The Ingush (Ingush: Галгай "Ghalghay") are an ethnic group of the North Caucasus, mostly inhabiting the Russian republic of Ingushetia. They refer to themselves as Ghalghai (галгай, from Ingush ghal "fortress" and ghai "inhabitants"). The Ingush are predominantly Sufi Muslim and speak the Ingush language, which has a very high degree of mutual intelligibility with neighboring Chechen.
Dzurdzuk is the legendary ancestor of the Nakh peoples, including the Ingush and Chechens, who are closely related linguistically. The endonym Ghalghay has been spelled Gargarei, Gelgai, and Galgai; the Georgian name is Glivi / Gligvi.
The Ingush came under Russian rule in 1810, but during World War II they were falsely accused of collaborating with the Nazis and the entire population was deported to Kazakhstan and Siberia with an estimated loss of a quarter to half of the population. They were rehabilitated in the 1950s, after the death of Stalin, and allowed to return home in 1957, though by that time northern Ingush lands had been ceded to North Ossetia. In 1992 the remaining Ingush were expelled from their capital, Vladikavkaz.
The Ingush possess a varied culture of traditions, legends, epics, tales, songs, proverbs, and sayings. Music, songs and dance are particularly highly regarded. Popular musical instruments include the dachick-panderr (a kind of balalaika), kekhat ponder (accordion, generally played by girls), mirz ponder (a three-stringed violin), zurna (a type of clarinet), tambourine, and drums.