\ shēˈu̇ŋˈnü \
plural Hsiung-Nu

Definition of Hsiung-Nu

: an ancient horse-using people related to or identical with the Huns, including the Jung and Ti peoples of Chinese history, and recorded in Chinese annals as being a powerful nation and in the 3d century b.c. occupying all the country between the Caspian sea and the Great Wall and dominating much of Mongolia

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

History and Etymology for Hsiung-Nu

Chinese (Pekingese) hsiung1 nu2, from hsiung1 cruel, fierce + nu2 slave, servant

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about Hsiung-Nu

Statistics for Hsiung-Nu

Cite this Entry

“Hsiung-Nu.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Hsiung-Nu. Accessed 16 Jan. 2021.

Comments on Hsiung-Nu

What made you want to look up Hsiung-Nu? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Words of Snow and Ice Quiz

  • image1037863653
  • Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!