If you're into popular etymology, you may have read that the word Amazon means "breastless", from a- ("without") and mastos ("breast"). Indeed, even the Greeks thought that; back when they were using the word they were convinced it was describing the quality of some Amazons to cut off their right breast for better archery skills. These statements have been largely debunked by historians and philologists alike; the Ancient Greek word Amazon is more likely a foreign word, hailing from Iranian hamazan, which described a certain group of warrior women in the steppes around Ukraine. Being part of a Proto-Indo-European language, the Iranian word hamazan could be from PIE nmngwiones, or "manless", from mongwio, "man". That, however, is getting really hypothetical. What we DO know is that the river was named after a similar warrior tribe in South America, and the company was named after the river due to its qualities of being large and exotic.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic, a rising junior studying government and linguistics at Harvard University, where I co-founded the Harvard Undergraduate Linguistics Society. In addition to etymology, I also really enjoy trivia, politics, vexillology, geography, board games, conlanging, art history, and law.