The people of Bihar can be generally categorized into two groups: (i) the "non-tribals" of the north and (ii) the aboriginees or the tribals of the south. The non-tribal group belong to various castes, prominent among which are: kayasthas, bhumihars, rajputs, and the so-called backward castes - yadavs, koeris, musahars, chamars, and others.

The aboriginees belong to various tribes, among which are: santhals, mundas, oraons, and others.

Regarding physical appearance of the people, the non-tribals or people of the north have smooth features with comparatively and generally a fairer complexion. The tribals are negroid in feature and are relatively shorter in stature.

The hallmark of the Biharis is a rustic simplicity with intrinsic humility coupled with enormous self-respect. They are traditionally very hospitable to strangers.