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From German Steppe or French steppe, in turn from Russian степь (stepʹ, flat grassy plain) or Ukrainian степ (step). There is no generally accepted earlier etymology, but there is a speculative Old East Slavic reconstruction *сътепь (sŭtepĭ, trampled place, flat, bare), related to топот (topot), топтать (toptatĭ).


From Russian степь (stepʹ)

Middle English

From Old English stæpe, stepe, from Proto-Germanic *stapiz, *stapǭ. The (historical) geminate is influence from steppen.