Ethnic Malay boys in Songkhla.
|1.9 million (2006 estimate)|
|Regions with significant populations|
|Patani Malay, Thai, Kedahan Malay, Kelantanese Malay|
|Sunni Islam, Buddhism|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Kelantanese Malay, Terengganu Malay, Kedahan Malay, Burmese Malays, Malays|
Thai Malays (Malay: Melayu Thai, Thai: ไทยเชื้อสายมลายู, Yawi: ملايو تاي) is a term used to refer to ethnic Malays in Thailand. Thailand hosts the third largest ethnic Malay population after Malaysia and Indonesia, and most Malays are concentrated in the Southern provinces of Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala, Songkhla, and Satun.
Ethnic Malays in Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala, and Songkhla are due in part to cultural differences from the Thai people as well as past experiences of forced attempts to assimilate them into Thai mainstream culture after the annexation of the Pattani Kingdom by the Sukhothai Kingdom. On the other hand, ethnic Malays in Satun are less inclined towards separatism. Ethnic Malays in Satun are more proficient in Thai as compared to the Malays from the other states, and their dialect has strong affinities to that of the neighboring Malaysian state of Perlis.
People of mixed Thai and Malay ancestry are known as Sam Sam, which forms the bulk of Satun's population but also a significant minority in Phatthalung, Trang, Krabi, Phang Nga and Songkhla as well as in the Malaysian states of Kedah, Perak and Perlis. Sam Sams are generally adherents of Islam but culturally Thai, although Malay influences are co-dominant. Phuket and Ranong, home to a sizeable Muslim population, also has many people who are of Malay descent. A sizeable community also exists in Bangkok itself, having descended from migrants or prisoners who were relocated from the South from the 13th century onwards.
- Thao Thep Kasattri and Thao Sri Sunthon — Heroine and Ancestors of na Thalâng Clan. (Malay descent from Phuket)
- Tengku Zubaidah Tengku Norudin (Kangsadal Phiphitphakdi) — Former Princess Consort of Muhammad V of Kelantan. (Malay descent from Pattani)
- Wan Aishah Wan Nawawi (Sirinthra Yayee) — The descendants of Mahsuri. (Malay descent from Phuket)
- Thapani Nakornthap (née na Thalâng) — Writer. (Malay descent from Nakhon Si Thammarat)
- Sukhumbhand Paribatra — 15th Governor of Bangkok and Politician. (Malay descent from na Thalâng Clan)
- Surin Pitsuwan — 12th Secretary general of ASEAN and Politician. (Malay descent from Nakhon Si Thammarat)
- Nikallaya Dulaya (Nikallaya Abdul) — Miss Thailand World 2004 and Actress. (Malay descent from Yala)
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