The Aryans were a semi-nomadic Nordic tribe who invaded and settled India from the northwest in circa 1500 BC. Their name means 'lord of the land'. The word derives from the Persian Arya, which refers to the Indo-European speaking people of Persia. As such, the name of the country Iran means "Land of the Aryans".
The term Aryan has also been used by Adolf Hitler and numerous other racialists to refer to what they believe to be the superior race of white, Nordic Europeans. The originator of the Aryan master race theory was French author Joseph Arthur de Gobineau.