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The word people derives from the term latin populus and can refer to several concepts: the inhabitants of a certain region (or living on the same territory), all persons defined by the region they inhabit, usually smaller than a city (a village, a campaign) and the mass of the people belonging to lower class of a society as opposed to the propertied classes.
The people can be doncl' all the inhabitants of a nation, a region or a country ("the french people"). These people are a community whose way of life and culture are similar. For Cicero, the people is the association based on the consent of the right and community of interest.
Moreover, as synonym of village (countryside versus city), the term people refers to the population focusing main mental agricultural activities. Nowadays, considering that the campaign represents about 0.5% of the total population of a country.
On the other hand, the people means the largest number of people, as opposed to those that differ from by their social or cultural level. In other words, it's citizens belonging to the social class known as the Plebs, or active population (one that brings its workforce). The social significance of the people (i.e., everyone) is used since the Roman period, which coincides with the appearance of the motto Senatus Populusque Romanus (SPQR), which was the emblem of all of the State (the patricians in the Senate and the plebeians).
Then, it is worth mentioning that the popular word (from the latin populāris) is a fact adjectifqui referring to this, or one who belongs or is matter/relative to the people. It is used to refer to what is easily accessible to all social classes or what is known by most of society.