The Scythians came roaring out of southern Siberia and came to dominate vast tracts of land from the Black Sea to China, according to the conventional wisdom. The nomadic warriors of Scythia lived on horseback, their fierceness documented by others, if only because they didn’t write.
One who could write was the Greek historian Herodotus, who lived in the fifth century B.C.E. and described the nomadic Scythians at length, explaining among other things that they descended from the fruit of Heracles having intercourse with a half-woman, half-snake: The Scythians arose from the best of their three sons, young Scythes. “None who attacks them can escape, and none can catch them if they desire not to be found,” Herodotus explained of the Scythians, who dominated the central Asia steppes from approximately about 2,700 to 2,200 years ago.