- You may also be looking for the plural of the word pole.
The Poles are a western Slavic ethnic group primarily associated with Poland and the Polish language.
There are around 38 million Poles in Poland as well as autochthonous Polish minorities in the surrounding countries such as Germany, Lithuania, Ukraine, Belarus. There are some smaller minorities in Romania, Estonia etc. Note that there was/is also a Polish minority in the Soviet Union which included autochthonous Poles as well as as some forcefully transferred Poles.
The term Polonia is nowadays usually used in Poland to refer to people of Polish origin who live outside Polish borders, estimated at between 16 and 23 million. There is a notable Polish diaspora in the United States, Canada, Argentina and other countries.
There is no commonly accepted definition of the Poles. According to the preamble of the Constitution of Poland the Polish Nation consists of all citizens of Poland. However, like in most European countries, many people limit the group to native speakers of the Polish language or people that share certain views or traditions.