Friday, June 25, 2010


Learned the history of this word from "The Girl who Kicked the Hornet's Nest". I am enjoying this final book of the trilogy and am disappointed that the author died.

Word History : In classical legend the Amazons were a tribe of warrior women. Their name is supposedly derived from Greek a-mazos, "without a breast," because according to the legend they cut off their right breasts so as to be better able to shoot with a bow and arrow. This folk etymology, like most folk etymologies, is incorrect, but the Amazons of legend are not so completely different from the historical Amazons, who were also warriors. The historical Amazons were Scythians, an Iranian people renowned for their cavalry. The first Greeks to come into contact with the Iranians were the Ionians, who lived on the coast of Asia Minor and were constantly threatened by the Persians, the most important of the Iranian peoples. Amazōn is the Ionian Greek form of the Iranian word ha-mazan, "fighting together." The regular Greek form would be hamazōn, but because the Ionians dropped their aitches like Cockneys, hamazōn became amazōn, the form taken into the other Greek dialects.

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posted by joe @ 6/25/2010 08:48:00 AM   2 comments


At 1:39 PM, Blogger Clay said...

So you listened to the entire trilogy? I saw lots of ads for the one you mentioned but didn't buy it yet. Do you recommend it? I am about to start the 3rd book in The Fourth Realm Trilogy by John Twelve Hawks it is pretty good.

At 1:56 PM, Blogger joe said...

I haven't finished it yet but it is good and recommend it.


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