September 03, 2011

Who Are the Anatolian Turks? A Reappraisal of the Anthropological Genetic Evidence (Yardumian & Schurr 2011)

This is a rather comprehensive overview of the issue of Turkish origins from an archaeological/anthropological/historical and genetic perspective. It should serve as a nice overview of the literature on the subject for anyone interested in the topic. The authors don't estimate a % estimate of the impact of incoming Turkic speakers vs. pre-Turkic Anatolians, but marshall enough evidence to show that massive migration into Anatolia from the east was not responsible for the linguistic Turkicization of the peninsula.

A minor observation on the genetic aspects of the paper is that the authors reference the old claim that Y-haplogroups G and J share common ancestry; this is not our current understanding of the Y-chromosome phylogeny which puts haplogroup J with haplogroup I in the IJ clade and more generally the IJK clade at the exclusion of G. In any case, this does not materially affect the paper's conclusions as both G and J originated in West Eurasia and may only have entered Anatolia with Turkic speakers as back-migration together with haplogroups typical of East Eurasia.

Related:
Anthropology & Archeology of Eurasia
Issue: Volume 50, Number 1 / Summer 2011Pages: 6 - 42

DOI: 10.2753/AAE1061-1959500101
Who Are the Anatolian Turks?A Reappraisal of the Anthropological Genetic Evidence
Aram Yardumian and Theodore G. Schurr


Abstract:Due to its long-term geographic position as gateway between Europe and Asia, the genetic constitution of Anatolia is highly complex. In spite of its overwhelming diversity, most citizens of the Republic of Turkey are firstlanguage Turkish-speakers and consider themselves ethnic Turks. This was not the case during the early Middle Ages and the time of the Byzantine Empire. Although we are able to identify four successive Turkic empires, Islamicization, and post-World War I nationalization as the essential steps toward ethnic homogenization, from historical texts alone we cannot determine to what extent mass migration from Central Asia and Siberia is responsible for Turkish dominance in Anatolia today. To assess the extent of gene flow from lands east of the Caspian, we examined the patterns of genetic variation in Turkic-speaking populations from Anatolia to Siberia. This analysis allows us to build the case for incommensurable, long-term, and continuing genetic signatures in both Anatolia and Siberia, and for significant mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosome divergence between the regions, with minimal admixture. We supplement the case against mass migration with correlative archeological, historical, and linguistic data, and suggest that it was irregular punctuated migration events that engendered large-scale shifts in language and culture among Anatolia's diverse autochthonous inhabitants.

Link

15 comments:

aynakom bilibyanalanamihan said...

some people say "turks turkicized locals"
I dont think that such statement is the most appropriate description of what really occured indeed by those times much of the population were peasants and the turks did only conquer the few numbering fewer towns and as a result local azaris(who were speaking different azari dialects from the same kurdish group) and armenians(speaking different armenian dialects) of those towns adopted the turkic brought by the few military nomadic newcomers as a lingua franca and by time it became the mothertongue of their descendants as well as of the surrounding countrysides thus supplanting persian
In fact Turkish speaking anatolians are irano-armenians who adopted the turkish lingua franca of the invaders (principle of cuius regio, eius religio) to intercommunicate (armenian and kurds adopted turkish to communicate between them)
There is a striking parallel with the kypchak speaking armenians (see below) who also adopted kypchak turkish of the kypchak turk invaders and the enslaved (by kypchak turks) local salvs and circassians, as their native tongue
"Armeno-Kipchak is the Turkic language of the Kipchak people which was current in the 16th and 17th centuries among the Armenian communities settled in the Lviv and Kamianets-Podilskyi area of what is now Ukraine.[1]
When members of the Armenian diaspora moved from the Crimean peninsula to the Polish-Ukrainian borderland in the end of the thirteenth century, they brought Kipchak, their adopted Middle Turkic language with them.[2]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armeno-Kipchak_dialect"

And not only kypchak-native tongued armenians but most of ottoman armenians were turk by native tongue
The few eastern asian input amongst various anatolians and iranians as well syrians (be them turkish persian kurdish or arabic speaking) is a pre-turk geographical one and that's why some kurds and iranians have more eastasia mongoloid input than anatolian turks

Dienekes said...

In fact Turkish speaking anatolians are irano-armenians who adopted the turkish lingua franca of the invaders (principle of cuius regio, eius religio) to intercommunicate (armenian and kurds adopted turkish to communicate between them)

Turkish speaking Anatolians are mostly Anatolian Greeks, except in the eastern provinces where they are Caucasian, Armenian, Iranic (Kurdish mainly), and Semitic (Assyrian-Arab).

All these various elements have a variable amount of Central Asian admixture, which they have acquired by gradual intermarriage with the Central Asian Turkic intruders.

that's why some kurds and iranians have more eastasia mongoloid input than anatolian turks

Kurds and Iranians have a little Mongoloid input which can be well-explained by admixture with Muslim Turkic peoples with which they lived in close proximity and with which they intermarried partially, being of the same religion and living in the same political entities.

Onur said...

I totally agree with Dienekes.

BTW, the percentage of the average Turkic genetic input in who are now Turks and Azeris is still open to debate (my guesstimate is <10% for Turks and probably for also Azeris).

Onur said...

BTW, the percentage of the average Turkic genetic input in who are now Turks and Azeris is still open to debate (my guesstimate is <10% for Turks and probably for also Azeris).

A clarification: Here, by "Turkic genetic", I am referring to the genetic composition of the Turkic speakers who participated in the migration to Anatolia and present-day Azeri lands at the time when they arrived in Anatolia and present-day Azeri lands.

terryt said...

"both G and J originated in West Eurasia"

Interesting. That's not what Maju claims. I've been arguing with him at his blog. He's convinced every haplogroup came originaly from South Asia (after they'd left Africa of course).

Megora7 said...

Have you any Anatolian Greek samples to compare them with modern Turks?.

It would be cool if you put the Sephardic Jewish samples in comparison. I think they could be very well come out partially West Anatolian.

Onur said...

Have you any Anatolian Greek samples to compare them with modern Turks?

Good question (a question I had asked Dienekes previously, but to which I haven't got a reply from him).

Dienekes said...

"Anatolian Greeks" is not really a valid category anymore as the people who lived in West Anatolia are not the same linguistically (and probably genetically) as those who lived in Northeastern Anatolia.

The former have been influenced by Greeks from the islands and mainland Greece during Ottoman times; the latter are divergent linguistically from all other Greeks and are also geographically isolated.

Greek communities elsewhere in Anatolia were much reduced in numbers, if not extinct, by the time of the exchange of populations.

In short, we don't have any good samples of the Greeks of the Anatolian plateau prior to the arrival of Turkic speakers. In any case, if any regional Greek populations reach the 5-person mark they will be reported in the Project.

Onur said...
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Onur said...

"Anatolian Greeks" is not really a valid category anymore as the people who lived in West Anatolia are not the same linguistically (and probably genetically) as those who lived in Northeastern Anatolia.

The former have been influenced by Greeks from the islands and mainland Greece during Ottoman times; the latter are divergent linguistically from all other Greeks and are also geographically isolated.

Greek communities elsewhere in Anatolia were much reduced in numbers, if not extinct, by the time of the exchange of populations.


I completely agree with these statements.

In short, we don't have any good samples of the Greeks of the Anatolian plateau prior to the arrival of Turkic speakers. In any case, if any regional Greek populations reach the 5-person mark they will be reported in the Project.

It seems to me that there is no Greek Dodecad participant whose all four grandparents are Anatolian Greeks. Hopefully, soon new genetic studies on Anatolian Greeks will be available.

Arslan Giray said...

dienekes, do you have a research about alevi Turks? most of them claim Turkoman ancestry. im always curious about them. alevis always consider themselves "purest Turks in anatolia" with Yoruks.

Kaygysyz said...

@aynakom bilibyanalanamihan
you should read some history.
the Oghuz Turks, whom migrated anatolia were not only male warriors. they were nomads, they came with their horses, herds, dogs, women, children, sheeps etc... "the earth was could not carrying the Turkmens
migrants" this is what arab historians said about Turkish migration. even mtdna in Turkey proves this. the newcomer Oghuz Turks began to intermarry with native anatolians. this was the tactic of "Turkicization". the Seljuk and Ottoman rulers seperated the Turkomans to most of the anatolia. nomadic Turkoman ratios of the regions were changing between 30% - 50%. and central anatolia was predominantly Turkmen. because of it's arid steppe, the native anatolian population was low in this region. your assertations @aynakom bilibyanalanamihan
your assertions are hilarious and idelogical. and about the native anatolian population of 11.century...there are also hilarious assertions about this...
in the beginning of the 20.century, there were only 8 million Turks in anatolia. (except balkans&caucasian immigrants)

Kaygysyz said...

There is alot of confusions and misconceptions about Turkic peoples and it basically stems down to a general lack of knowledge about us.
Your post is a good introduction but I’d like to add some more.
1. The Eurasian steppe has always been a mixing pot, people of various appearances (Mongoloid, Caucasoid). The Turks have never had “one” look, if you look at the Chinese records they describe Turks as being different from themselves looks wise, they have been described as having different colored eyes and hair. To Europeans Turks looked Oriental, to the Chinese Turks looked European. What I’m getting at is, there is no “Turkic gene”, just like no other nation has its own gene. Therefore its hard to determine Turkicnes through genes. We don’t even know the genetics of the immigrants who came to Anatolia, Iran, Azerbaycan and its hard to work this out as it was before the Mongol expansion.
2. Turks of Azerbaycan and Turkey don’t look very different to people of Turkmenistan and even parts of Ozbekistan and Uygur regions. Infact many Turkmens look closer to their Oghuz Turk brethren then their Kazakh Turkic neighbors. To understand this one must look at regions history, most of the Mongol tribes who were Turkicized were in the modern Kazakhstan region.
3. There is a high degree of mutual intelligibility between the Oghuz and Karluk/Chaghtai Turkic groups. The Turkmen of southern Turkmenistan can be understood especially in parts of Anatolia and Azerbaycan. Uygur-Ozbek is quite close to Oghuz Turkish, however, Kazakh and Kirgiz have notable differences.
4. Nearly all the main Oghuz tribes have been recorded as having a presence in the Turkey/Azerbaycan region and founded countless Beyliks, Atabeks and states like the Aq-qoyunlu – Qara-qoyunlu the later which were nomadic Central Asian style nomadic Turkic states which didn’t have a permanant capital city. The influx of Turks must have been considerable as it wasn’t even Turks who came up with the name “Turkiye”, it derives from the Latin, Turchia = Land of the Turks and was coined in the 13th century, before the Ottoman Empire existed.

Onur said...
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Onur said...

Arslan Giray/Kaygysyz/Pecheneg (I think they are the same person),

No serious geneticist, historian or archaeologist I know makes an estimation of the number of the Turkic immigrants to Anatolia as large as you do and an estimation of the number of the native Anatolian population as small as you do. The genetic, archaeological and historical data do not support you. Anatolia was still a principally Christian and non-Turkic-speaking region at the end of the last Turkic migration wave (by 1300 CE). So its transition to a majority Muslim and Turkic-speaking region largely happened later than the last Turkic migration wave to Anatolia, and hence largely as a result of Anatolia's local dynamics. The Turkic immigrants to Anatolia were large enough to trigger a language shift in Anatolia, but they were surely not as large as you claim. Likewise, you exaggerate the number of the Mongolian immigrants to Central Asia. I explained why your claims are implausible before, so I don't want to repeat them. The Latin word Turchia simply referred to a Turkic-ruled area irrespective of the Turkic-speaking population. All the territories of the Ottoman Empire were called Turchia by western Europeans, even the territories which lacked Turkic-speakers.

BTW, in case you don't know, aynakom bilibyanalanamihan is a historian and he surely is more informed about the Turkic and Anatolian history than you and me. I am just stating this as a fact, and this doesn't mean I agree with all his conclusions.

This will be my last reply to you if you don't reply again.