The Akan /kn/ are a meta-ethnicity predominantly speaking Central Tano languages and residing in the southern regions of the former Gold Coast region in what is today the nation of Ghana. Akans who historically migrated from Ghana also make up a plurality of the populace in the Ivory Coast.
Akans are the largest group in both countries and have a population of over 20 million people. The Akan language (also known as TwiFante) is a group of dialects within the Central Tano branch of the PotouTano subfamily of the NigerCongo family.
Subgroups of the Akan proper include:
Asante, Akuapem, Akwamu, and Akyem (together known as Twi), Agona, Kwahu, Wassa, Fante (Fanti or Mfantse: Anomabo, Abura, Gomua) and Bono.
Subgroups of the Bia-speaking groups include: the Anyin, Baoul, Chakosi (Anufo), Sefwi (Sehwi), Nzema, Ahanta and Jwira-Pepesa. The Akan subgroups have cultural attributes in common, notably the tracing of descent, inheritance of property, and succession to high political office.
A large number of Akans were taken as captives to the Americas, and many people of African descent in the Americas have partial Akan ancestry, especially Jamaicans. During the 18th and 19th centuries, Akans who were enslaved were all referred to as "Coromantees".