Historically the Portuguese people's heritage includes the pre-Celts, Celts (Celtiberians, Lusitanians, Gallaecians and Celtici) the Romans, Greeks, Scandinavians, and migratory Germanic tribes like the Vandals, Visigoths (Western Goths) and Suebi.
The Roman Republic conquered the Iberian Peninsula during the 2nd and 1st centuries B.C. from the extensive maritime empire of Carthage during the series of Punic Wars. As a result of Roman colonization, the majority of local languages stem from the Vulgar Latin. Due to the large historical extent from the 16th century of the Portuguese Empire and the subsequent colonization of territories in Asia, Africa and the Americas, as well as historical and recent emigration, Portuguese communities can be found in many diverse regions around the globe, and a large Portuguese diaspora exists.
Portuguese people were a key factor to the Age of Exploration beginning at the end of the 15th century and extending into the 16th, 17th, 18th centuries and consolidated during the 19th century. Discovering during these times, several lands unknown to the Europeans in the Americas, Africa, Asia and Oceania (southwest Pacific Ocean), helping to pave the way for the globalization and dominazation of Western civilization.
Today, Portugal also exhibits a multicultural society from around the world, but in particular from its former most recent colonies of the Lusosphere, such as Brazilians, Cape Verdeans, Angolans, Mozambicans, Goans, Macanese and Timorese people.
The Portuguese are a Southwestern European population, with origins predominantly from Southern and Western Europe.