• "Terran" is to "Terra" what Aryan is to ______?
  • "Venusians" are to "Venus" what Aryan is to ______?

This question is about the etymological origin of the pronoun Aryan, given that Terran depends on a place being colloquially called "Terra". Of or being from Terra. Never ever heard of a place called "Arya" or is there?

The first Aryan place name that comes to mind is "Valhalla", given that the Nordic and Baltic races were considered Aryan in the Third Reich, but am not familiar with any concrete links between Norse and Germanic mythology whatsoever.

  • 1
    There is no pronoun "Aryan" in German. It is unclear what you are asking and how it relates to the German language. You might have a question that fits on the History Stackexchange site but I'm not sure.
    – user6495
    Oct 24, 2022 at 7:52
  • mistaking Aryans for Germanic language is pretty easy to do. Don't pretend to not know how the mistake can be made. Best answer has been chosen.
    – user610620
    Oct 24, 2022 at 19:21
  • 1
    "Aryans" is clearly an English word. Don't pretend you didn't know that.
    – user6495
    Oct 25, 2022 at 4:47
  • This is a joke taken seriously? Martians/Aryans -> Mars/Ars? Oct 27, 2022 at 12:51

2 Answers 2


The OP says:

The first Aryan place name that comes to mind is "Valhalla", given that the Nordic and Baltic races were considered Aryan in the Third Reich, but am not familiar with any concrete links between Norse and Germanic mythology whatsoever.

While term Aryan is usually associated with the white supremacy theories widespread in German-speaking countries in the first half of the XXth century, it is actually not of Germanic, but of Indo-Iranian origin (link to Wikipedia article Aryan):

The term Arya was first rendered into a modern European language in 1771 as Aryens by French Indologist Abraham-Hyacinthe Anquetil-Duperron, who rightly compared the Greek arioi with the Avestan airya and the country name Iran. A German translation of Anquetil-Duperron's work led to the introduction of the term Arier in 1776. The Sanskrit word ā́rya is rendered as 'noble' in William Jones' 1794 translation of the Indian Laws of Manu, and the English Aryan (originally spelt Arian) appeared a few decades later, first as an adjective in 1839, then as a noun in 1851.

Thus, one could probably say that "Venusians" are to "Venus" what Aryan is to Iran. But this is just a guess - the question should be really addressed to the experts on ancient languages and Indo-Iranian history are in Linguistics or History communities.

  • Thanks for the great answer. It really makes no sense though that Germanic caucasians idealize their race after Iranians, who are pretty much Semites neighboring the Jews. Someone please make this make sense, were 20. century Germans dumb?
    – user610620
    Oct 24, 2022 at 19:20
  • 1
    @user610620 Iranians are not semites, Arabs are.
    – Roger V.
    Oct 24, 2022 at 19:45
  • thus the placement of "pretty much neighboring" perojoratively. the question remains a white race trying to model themselves after black-haired brown skin iranians, while at the same time castigating anyone with black hair and brown skin originating in the surrounding areas of iran. make it make sense pls
    – user610620
    Oct 25, 2022 at 8:33
  • This discussion definitely doesn't belong in German Language Q&A. You may fit in better in a politics or history debating forum. Oct 26, 2022 at 12:09
  • @TilmanSchmidt I suppose it could be a legitimate question, if it asked about the origin of terms Arier and arisch in German. As it is now, it could be even in English community.
    – Roger V.
    Oct 26, 2022 at 12:16

"Aryan", or "Arier" in German, originally wasn't a term for people from a specific place, but for people speaking a specific language (or group of languages):

Der Ausdruck Arier (...) ist unter anderem eine Selbstbezeichnung von Sprechern indoiranischer Sprachen.


So it was originally a term speakers of Indo-Iranian languages used for themselves in ancient times, to contrast themselves from neighboring people who spoke other languages. We're talking about roughly 500 B.C. and earlier. Obviously, those people lived somewhere, but for a long time scholars couldn't agree on where exactly. This search for a (at least partially mythical) "Urheimat" (roughly "original homeland") played a role in the shift of the term from linguistics into far-right politics.

Because many centuries later, in the 19. and 20. century, the term was kind of occupied by white supremacists who were looking for a pseudo-scientific rationale for the idea of them being some kind of "superior race". Very broadstroke, the general concept was that back in the day, some Aryans supposedly travelled to Europe to "bring culture" to the people there. The white supremacists considered themselves descendants of those "Kulturbringer". And because of that, they were obviously superior to all those other lowly people...

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