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Eth. SCIRI or SCIRRI, a population variously placed by various authors. The first who mentions them is Pliny (4.13. s. 27), who fixes them in Eningia, i. e. in the parts to the NE. of the extreme frontier of what he and his contemporaries call Germania, i. e. East Prussia, Courland, Livonia, Esthonia, and part of Finnland, “quidam haec habitari ad Vistulam usque fluvium a Sarmatis, Venedis, Sciris, Hirris, tradunt.” No other author either mentions the Hirri or places the Sciri thus far northward.

The most interesting notice of them is in the socalled Olbian inscription (Böckh, Inscr. no. 2058), wherein they are mentioned as dangerous neighbours to the town of Olbia along with the Galatae, the Thisamatae, the Scythae, and the Saudaratae (Zeuss, Die Deutschen, &c., s. v. Galatae); and, doubtless, the neighbouring town of Olbia was their true locality. [p. 2.932]

The evidence of Jornandes makes them Alans ( “Sciri et Satagariiet ceteri Alanorum,” Reb. Get. 49), evidence which is important, since Peria, the notary of the Alan king Candax,was the writer's grandfather. They are made by Sidonius (Carm. 7.322) part of Attila's army, by Jornandes subjects of Odoacer, by Procopius members of the Goth and Alan alliance. They were, almost certainly, a Scythian tribe of Kherson, who during the period of the Greek settlements harassed Olbia, and, during the Byzantine period, joined with the other barbarians of the Lower Danube againts Rome. Of these, the chief confederates were the Heruli and Turcilingi; with whom they found their way as far west as Bavaria. The present country of Styria (Styermark)==the March of the Stiri or Sciri, the change from Sc to St being justified by the Bavarian Count Von Schiern in one part of a document of the 10th century being made a Comes de Stira in another. Add to this the existence of a Nemus Scirorum in Bavaria. (See Zeuss, s. v. Sciri).

The Sciri of the later writers were probably a portion of the Scythians of the parts between the Danube and Don, under a newer and more specific name. The transplantation into Styria along with an inroad of Uldis, king of the Huns, seems to have broken up the name and nation. Sozomenes saw the remnants of them labouring as slaves in the mines of Mount Olympus in Bithynia (9.5).


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