Scythian elements in Old Iranian

Alexander Lubotsky

in Indo-Iranian Languages and Peoples

Published by British Academy

Published in print January 2003 | ISBN: 9780197262856
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191753961 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

Scythian elements in Old Iranian

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This chapter examines whether there are Scythian loanwords in the Old Iranian languages, namely Avestan and Old Persian. Since all three languages are closely related, it is not simple to prove borrowing. Old Persian vocabulary contains many words which must be of Iranian but non-Persian origin. These words are usually attributed to Median, but it is in principle equally possible that they are borrowed from any other Iranian language, including Scythian. Only when we find phonological features which are characteristic of Scythian can we be confident that we are indeed dealing with a Scythian loanword.

Keywords: Scythian loanwords; Old Iranian languages; Avestan; Old Persian; Scythian; Median

Chapter.  6396 words. 

Subjects: Classical History

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