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Scythia is an ancient region of Europe and Asia, located between the Danube River and China. It was occupied by the Scythians, a nomadic tribe of horse-riding conquerors, invading many neighbouring areas in Eurasia, Mesopotamia and Asia Minor. Scythians were famous for their archers, and many were hired as mercenaries.

Archaeological remains of the Scythians are generally limited to the elaborate tombs that they constructed, containing gold, silk, horses and human sacrifices. The preservation of some of the remains was improved by mummification techniques and by the presence of permafrost. The Scythians did not leave written records, but they were described in detail by Herodotus. It is believed that Herodotus histories reports very early use of marijuana by Scythians, also known in archaeological literature as the Saka. The Scythians may have migrated from Pazyryk.

It's said that the Scythians disappeared in the 1st century BC, but some scholars believe that their descendants are the Ossets[?] or Ossetians[?], and they are the only Iranians who still live in Europe. They call their country Iron, and are mostly Christians. They speak Ossetic, or as they themselves call it Ironig, or Ironski (=Iranian), which is classified as an Eastern Iranian language. Ossetic maintains on the one hand, some remarkable features of the Gathic Avestan, and possesses on the other, a number of words such as THAU (tauen to thaw, as in snow) and GAU (district, region) which are remarkably similar to their modern German equivalents.

External links

  • Picture of Scythian women attacking a tower. (http://ibs001.colo.firstnet.net.uk/britishlibrary/controller/textsearch?text=knight&width=9&height=9&image.y=6&image.x=14&idx=1&start=67) (From the British Library Collection)

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