one of an ancient nomadic race living on the steppes of southern Russia, 1540s, from Latin Scythia, from Greek Skythia, name anciently given to the region along the north coast of the Black Sea and extending in definitely north, from Skythes "a Scythian," said to be from an Indo-European root meaning "shepherd" [Room]. The earlier noun was Scyth (late 14c.). As an adjective from 1560s, "pertaining to Scythia or the Scythians." Herodotus is responsible for Scythian disease or Scythian insanity.
updated on March 09, 2022