- of, relating to, or characteristic of Parthia, its inhabitants, or their language.
Origin of Parthian
Examples from the Web for parthian
The Parthian shot was delivered actually on the way to Mabel's embrace.Love and Lucy
Maurice Henry Hewlett
Myra delivered this Parthian shaft over her shoulder as she walked off.Shining Ferry
Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch
Two of these were Nubians, one a Parthian, the other a Spaniard.For the Temple
G. A. Henty
He wants to go to the Parthian war, but he has not money to support him.The Life of Cicero
That was her way of replying to the Parthian arrow; but the barb was poisoned.Rhoda Fleming, Complete
- of or relating to Parthia, a country in ancient Asia, or its inhabitants
- a native or inhabitant of Parthia
Word Origin and History for parthian
1520s, native or inhabitant of Parthia (ancient kingdom northeast of Persia in western Asia), from Old Persian Parthava- "Parthian," dialectal variant of the stem Parsa-, source of Persia.
As an adjective, 1580s. Phrase Parthian shot is in reference to their horsemen, who were expert at racing forward, turning, and shooting arrows backward at the moment of retreat. The exact phrase is attested by 1832; the image itself was in use long before (e.g. Parthian fight, 1630s).
Or, like the Parthian, I shall flying fight ["Cymbeline," Act I, Scene VII]