The Greeks claimed that the word derives from ἀ- (a-, “not”) + μαζός (mazós, “breast”), in reference to the belief that Amazons cut off their right breast so that it might not hinder their ability to fire a bow or throw a spear. However, this is almost certainly a folk etymology; in art, Amazons are always shown with two intact breasts. The word is likely of foreign origin, perhaps an Ionian Greek pronunciation of the Old Persian word *hamazan (“fight as a group”), as the Amazon women were known warriors. Ionians did not aspirate the first syllable, and the word became "amazon" to the Greeks in general. It could also be native Greek, such as from a Proto-Indo-European *n̥-mn̥gʷ-i̯on-es 'manless, husbandless', from Proto-Indo-European *mongʷi̯o (“man”) (compare Russian муж (muž)). Numerous other etymologies have been proposed, generally tracing the word back to Iranian, Greek or (West/East) Caucasian languages.
- (5th BC Attic): IPA: /amazdɔ͜ɔ́n/
- (1st BC Egyptian): IPA: /amaz̚zóːn/
- (4th AD Koine): IPA: /amaz̚zón/
- (10th AD Byzantine): IPA: /amaz̚zón/
- (15th AD Constantinopolitan): IPA: /amazón/
|Case / #||Singular||Dual||Plural|
|Nominative||ἡ Ᾰ̓μαζών||τὼ Ᾰ̓μαζόνε||αἱ Ᾰ̓μαζόνες|
|Genitive||τῆς Ᾰ̓μαζόνος||τοῖν Ᾰ̓μαζόνοιν||τῶν Ᾰ̓μαζόνων|
|Dative||τῇ Ᾰ̓μαζόνῐ||τοῖν Ᾰ̓μαζόνοιν||ταῖς Ᾰ̓μαζόσῐ|
|Accusative||τὴν Ᾰ̓μαζόνᾰ||τὼ Ᾰ̓μαζόνε||τᾱ̀ς Ᾰ̓μαζόνᾰς|
|Notes:||This table gives Attic inflectional endings. For declension in dialects other than Attic, see Appendix:Ancient Greek dialectal declension.|
- Ἀμαζών in Liddell & Scott (1940) A Greek–English Lexicon, Oxford: Clarendon Press
- Ἀμαζών in Liddell & Scott (1889) An Intermediate Greek–English Lexicon, New York: Harper & Brothers
- «Ἀμαζών» in Bailly, Anatole (1935) Le Grand Bailly: Dictionnaire grec-français, Paris: Hachette
- «Ἀμαζών» in the Diccionario Griego–Español en línea (© 2006–2016)
- Ἀμαζών in Slater, William J. (1969) Lexicon to Pindar, Berlin: Walter de Gruyter
- Woodhouse, S. C. (1910) English-Greek Dictionary: A Vocabulary of the Attic Language, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul Limited.
- Amazon idem, page 1000.