April 24, 2013

mtDNA haplogroup H and the origin of Europeans (Brotherton et al. 2013)

Panel b is particularly interesting, as it clearly shows the Iberian-ness of Bell Beaker mtDNA (BBC), and the South-Eastern-ness of LBK.

From the paper:
From around 2800 BC, the LNE Bell Beaker culture emerged from the Iberian Peninsula to form one of the first pan-European archaeological complexes. This cultural phenomenon is recognised by a distinctive package of rich grave goods including the eponymous bell-shaped ceramic beakers. The genetic affinities between Central Europe’s Bell Beakers and present-day Iberian populations (Fig. 2) is striking and throws fresh light on long-disputed archaeological models3. We suggest these data indicate a considerable genetic influx from the West during the LNE. These far-Western genetic affinities of Mittelelbe-Saale’s Bell Beaker folk may also have intriguing linguistic implications, as the archaeologically-identified eastward movement of the Bell Beaker culture has recently been linked to the initial spread of the Celtic language family across Western Europe39. This hypothesis suggests that early members of the Celtic language family (for example, Tartessian)40 initially developed from Indo-European precursors in Iberia and subsequently spread throughout the Atlantic Zone; before a period of rapid mobility, reflected by the Beaker phenomenon, carried Celtic languages across much of Western Europe. This idea not only challenges traditional views of a linguistic spread of Celtic westwards from Central Europe during the Iron Age, but also implies that Indo-European languages arrived in Western Europe substantially earlier, presumably with the arrival of farming from the Near East41.
It does seem increasingly likely that there was a major Out-of-Iberia episode which may very well have involved a population of relative newcomers (R1b males, undetected in Europe in the pre-5ka period) interacting with an "Iberian" matrilineal substratum and then exporting both R1b and the "Iberian" type of H into most of Western Europe with the Bell Beaker phenomenon. It's hard to think of the Bell Beakers as ultimately descended from the first farmers alone, both because of their distinctive physical type, and also because of the aforementioned absence of R1b in early farmers. More ancient DNA work will certainly help solve many of the remaining puzzles.

Also from the paper:
The demographic reconstruction, which is based on direct calibration points, has major implications for understanding post-glacial human history in Europe. Our new estimate is incompatible with traditional views that the majority of present-day hg H lineages were carried into Central, Northern and Eastern Europe via a post-glacial human population expansion before the Holocene (12 kya)13. Our data complement a recent study, based on present-day mt genomes, which describes a pronounced population increase at ~7000 BC (interpreted as a Neolithic expansion into Europe), but followed by a slow population growth until the present day26. By including ancient DNA data from across the critical time points in question, our skyride plot corrects for missing temporal data and suggests substantial growth of hg H from the beginning of the Neolithic and continuing throughout the entire Neolithic period. This emphasizes the role of farming practices and cultural developments in the demographic expansions inferred in subsequent time periods, which have not yet been explored genetically.
Nature Communications 4, Article number: 1764 doi:10.1038/ncomms2656

Neolithic mitochondrial haplogroup H genomes and the genetic origins of Europeans

Paul Brotherton et al.

Haplogroup H dominates present-day Western European mitochondrial DNA variability (>40%), yet was less common (~19%) among Early Neolithic farmers (~5450 BC) and virtually absent in Mesolithic hunter-gatherers. Here we investigate this major component of the maternal population history of modern Europeans and sequence 39 complete haplogroup H mitochondrial genomes from ancient human remains. We then compare this ‘real-time’ genetic data with cultural changes taking place between the Early Neolithic (~5450 BC) and Bronze Age (~2200 BC) in Central Europe. Our results reveal that the current diversity and distribution of haplogroup H were largely established by the Mid Neolithic (~4000 BC), but with substantial genetic contributions from subsequent pan-European cultures such as the Bell Beakers expanding out of Iberia in the Late Neolithic (~2800 BC). Dated haplogroup H genomes allow us to reconstruct the recent evolutionary history of haplogroup H and reveal a mutation rate 45% higher than current estimates for human mitochondria.

Link

102 comments:

  1. "and reveal a mutation rate 45% higher than current estimates for human mitochondria."

    They are obviously not taking the calibrated mutation rates from the Fu et al. (2013) paper into account, had they done so, this higher mutation rate wouldn't appear very surprising. I recall making a comment about it on your blog:

    “So this new mutation rate of 2.16 – 3.16 E-08, is 42-74% faster than the Soares mutation rate of 1.52 – 1.81 E-08 ….”

    link

    ReplyDelete
  2. But how did R1b get to Iberia? By boat? And from where?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Celts likely originated nearer to northern Italy or within Italy for that matter, not Iberia. Beakers were brachycephalic Alpines or Dinarics(alpine-med.), two types found in a much less frequency in Spain(mainly around the north). Bell Beakers anthropology have been pretty much always regarded as coming from the eastern Mediterranean or even via the Balkans where the Dinaricized nucleus is supposedly found.

    The authors appear to jump to some conclusions but I think the Near eastern and Neolithic spread of IE is fact by now.

    This other study from Christina Jane Adler also showed an interesting result with LBK and BB:

    http://s7.postimg.org/5bl7hi9e3/image.png

    Apparently there rooted in a generalized southern/western European grouping but Basque are shifted towards Uralic peoples even a bit more so than the Poles.

    ReplyDelete
  4. An Iberian origin for Celtic is not unlikely, though Stephen Oppenheimer (the leading popular proponent of this idea) unfortunately mixes it up with notions of Paleolithic European origins for R1b. For a more detailed explanation of this theory, read CELTIC ORIGINS: IBERIAN DIMENSIONS by Seamus Hamill-Keays: http://www.academia.edu/1432724/Celtic_Origins_Iberian_Connections

    ReplyDelete
  5. The notion that Bell Beaker was Celtic or Indo-European is, IMHO, extremely weak. The case that Bell Beaker was Vasconic and eventually was overrun culturally by Indo-Europeans everywhere but Basque country, is far more plausible.

    ReplyDelete
  6. And hg H in Berbers is also of Bell-Beaker origin? And what about hg V in the Saami and Berbers? Do the authors want to tell us that Magdalenian hunters (R1b) had no women and hg H was not present in Western Europe before the Bell-Beaker culture? We still know too little about old Europeans. I wouldn't draw large-scale conclusions based on few dozens of paleogenetic samples.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Our results reveal that the current diversity and distribution of haplogroup H were largely established by the Mid Neolithic (~4000 BC), but with substantial genetic contributions from subsequent pan-European cultures such as the Bell Beakers [...]

    Contrary to earlier phases of the Neolithic, the Mid Neolithic rather derives from "some" Mesolithic cultures. Often this requires an expert to perceive in the archeological record. Hence the title of my latest blog 'The Mesolithic Blind Spot'.
    In this article I adhered to the current archeological insight that reconstruct a continued Mesolithic presence in "some" key regions that coexisted with separate Neolithic groups. That is, the native hunter-gatherer groups that evolved into the main cultural bearers of the Middle Neolithic don’t necessarily represent the complete legacy of earlier Mesolithic expansions. Those Mesolithic groups that had already fully adapted to the Neolithic way of life may have become bottlenecked together with the Danubian population they merged with, while the Mesolithic groups of many geographic other locations that didn’t adapt may have disappeared altogether. However, a growing body of evidence indicates the dramatic population crash that terminated the “Danubian” Early Neolithic was survived by some groups of Late Mesolithic origin that continued to thrive and ultimately entered a new (Middle-) Neolithic phase several centuries later, that in turn evolved more gradually into the pan-European Late Neolithic Beaker groups. One such candidate Mesolithic key region may be Swifterbant in NW Europe.

    The rapid evolution of H fits well in my view that much of mtDNA H is actually home-grown in Europe.

    ReplyDelete
  8. "The notion that Bell Beaker was Celtic or Indo-European is, IMHO, extremely weak. The case that Bell Beaker was Vasconic and eventually was overrun culturally by Indo-Europeans everywhere but Basque country, is far more plausible."

    Pardon my sarcasm , but according to which of the zero supporters of Vennmens' outlandish and speculative claims?

    If anything , prehistoric europe had greater linguistic diversity which then later became more uniform, ie with Celtic then romance and Germanic.

    ReplyDelete
  9. My how quickly you have implicitly reversed your "R1b recently came from the East" theory.

    I know, this is when you say, "it still did come from the east at some point."

    And I reply, "that's as imprecise as saying 'we all came from Africa' through the east, at some point."

    I think we can conclusively say now that the expansion of Beaker folk was out of the west, that the expansion was due to lactose tolerance mutation, and that the R1b marker marks this expansion in males.

    ReplyDelete
  10. And I agree by the way that the Celtic language claim here is a very great leap, ie wrong.

    ReplyDelete
  11. R1b people were highly mobile(by horse, boat). Since R1a and R1b spread from east to west. I think early bronze age metallurgy spread in the same way. And since waterways makes the wooded areas accessable it might explain the high conecentrations along the Atlantic coast and river like the Rhine.

    Maybe the African r1b V88 snp-group spread from the eastern Mediterranean sea during the same period as its Euroasian brother clade p297.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Metallurgical_diffusion.png

    ReplyDelete
  12. What about the H samples found in Upper Paleolithic Iberia and Mesolithic Karelia? Some H in Europe may still be descended from the Upper Paleolithic and Mesolithic populations.

    ReplyDelete
  13. @ Crimson Guard

    I would suggest that the question of where Bell Beaker have origins outside Iberia, if they have such origins at all, is anything but a settled question with a consensus answer, and that the Eastern Mediterranean theory, in particular, doesn't stand up to closer scrutiny. I personally lean towards the theory that Bell Beaker was a folk migration from somewhere else to Iberia, but I am not comfortable concluding anything more than that it was from someplace in Europe (obviously, someplace to the East of Iberia), rather than North Africa. And, I acknowledge that the Iberian origin theory (or alternately an Iberian ethnogenesis theory with the shake up in that local gene pool possibly taking place thousands of years before BB expansion as a result of a prior minor Neolithic or Mesolithic migration wave) cannot be dismissed out of hand.

    There is something close to a consensus that the Bell Beaker phenomena's late Copper Age/Bronze Age expansion can be traced to Southwestern Iberia ca. 2900 BCE. But, further back than that, the trail becomes far less clear.

    The limited number of candidate cultures at the right time period with the right kind of mastery of copper metallurgy and other technologies and the right physical anthropology narrows the number of candidates significantly. On balance, a migration by land also seems more likely to me than one by sea given their genetic affinities, although the fact that early BB civilization was strongly maritime weakens the strength of this inferrence.

    Michael Boblett also likewise rightly distinguishes between the possibility that the Indo-European migrants ancestral to the Celts didn't crystalize the full Celtic cultural package until reaching Iberia (contrary the leading view that this cultural package was more or less in place in Central Europe prior to the migration), from the question of which archaeological culture should be identified as the original Celtic culture or of how the genes that became much more common in the late Neolithic came to be widespread or where those genes had their origins.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Seems plausible to me.

    If you look at maps of Celtic expansion

    http://permastoreom6.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/celticmaps.jpg

    i think what you're looking at is the terriotory where the original neolithic farming package wasn't viable long-term except in the most favoured sites and which took the development of a modified package built around cattle to fill (with a giant forest full of white walkers past the northern edge).

    If so then if it's true that high rainfall -> lush grass -> good cattle country then one of the most likely development points of that cattle culture would be somewhere along the Atlantic coast because of the extreme rainfall

    http://imageshack.us/f/527/eurprcyfz7.jpg/

    and franco-cantabria would be the first stop along that line.

    Whether the Atlantic cowboys were descended from first farmers, paleos, second farmers or a mixture i think the critical factor is the modification of the farming package to revolve around cattle.

    I think those Bell beakers would likely test positive for neolithic milk and cereal.

    "The notion that Bell Beaker was Celtic or Indo-European is, IMHO, extremely weak. The case that Bell Beaker was Vasconic and eventually was overrun culturally by Indo-Europeans everywhere but Basque country, is far more plausible."

    Maybe it's both.

    Say for the sake of argument the Atlantic cowboys were genetically Celtic i.e. their genetic mixture formed the basis of the non-germanic substrate but not yet entirely culturally Celtic as we now know it i.e. when the cowboys reached the Hallstatt region with it's iron-richness and position dominating the trade along the Danube-Rhine those material resources sparked the creation of a particular form of Celtic culture which expanded out from that point including back in the direction it came from i.e. genetically celtic atlantic cowboys expanded east and many centuries later the genetically similar but culturally distinct central european version of Celts expanded back to the west.

    ReplyDelete
  15. "An Iberian origin for Celtic is not unlikely,"

    I can think of a few problems, mostly geographical, with that proposal, which is pretty novel.

    One is that an Iberian origin for the language group puts it a long ways from the first known Celtic cultural phase around Hallstat.

    It also requires a back migration fomr the last area to be Indo-europenainzed in Europe back on the route those people came in on, without much identifiiable motive.

    But the biggest problem is chronological. Bell Beaker is way too early to get Celtic to line up with Italic the way it has too for the sound changes to fit.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Dear Average Joe – there's a nice Eupedia article on this indicating a Bronze Age introduction of R1b: http://www.eupedia.com/europe/Haplogroup_R1b_Y-DNA.shtml#history Certainly it's a latecomer, which paradoxically may account for its very high percentages among old Connaught families. Quite likely it came by way of the Maykop and descendent Proto-Italo-Celtic cultures, which is interesting in light of Crimson Guard's ideas about Celtic origins before Spain, though Italy itself may not have been the geographic origin of Celtic. Certainly there was a lot going on in Spain after the Neolithic arrived but before IE, which is why speculations that Basque is Paleolithic in origin are fruitless. That's not to say that Andrew is wrong when he suggests that Bell Beaker may be Vasconic.

    ReplyDelete
  17. @ Crimson Guard
    " I think the Near eastern and Neolithic spread of IE is fact by now. "

    Im not saying I disagree (although I do, at least in terms of the time frame), but where did you dream this up from ? ? :)

    95% of linguists DISAGREE with your statement and avocate a Chalcolithic -steppe scenario, for right or wrong

    ReplyDelete
  18. Dienekes, archaeologists have noted (eg in Aegeum 27) that there might be links of Beaker culture to western Greece. Now, this is very scant and not universally agreed, but the Bell Beaker culture definitely arose as the western/ central Mediterranean (iwe Italy and Iberia) began to link up with the eastern mediterranean/ eastern Adriatic/ Aegean. Connections with west Balkans/ NW Greece are definitely attested, and ''could'' provide a seaborne PIE 'link' to the west Med/ Atlantic region

    ReplyDelete
  19. "The case that Bell Beaker was Vasconic and eventually was overrun culturally by Indo-Europeans everywhere but Basque country, is far more plausible".

    My feeling also.

    ReplyDelete
  20. As far as I can tell, this article is Pay-For-View-Only even in academics, so I won't comment. \

    It's an utter disgrace to science, and a very poor choice by the authors.

    ReplyDelete
  21. "Celtic From The West" Cunliffe and Koch, ed. (2010) and "Tartessian, Celtic in the South-west at the Dawn of History" Koch (2009) are both excellent reading for those who hold to the theory propounded by the above article's authors, who I note include both Renfrew and Wells.

    As to where they may have come from, if not indigenous to Iberia for thousands of years, Gibraltar is only a short hop across from Africa, and the littoral of North Africa is a much more direct path from the Middle East than around the many indentations of Southern Europe. What is needed is more aDNA from North Africa.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Andrew, as I recall, your argument that Bell Beaker was Vasconic relied upon interpreting the archaeological record in light of the Kurgan hypothesis. I don't think you can dismiss something that questions the validity of a hypothesis using an argument that depends upon that hypothesis being valid. You run the risk of disappearing up your own backside in a poof of logic.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Dr Rob,

    "Connections with west Balkans/ NW Greece are definitely attested, and ''could'' provide a seaborne PIE 'link' to the west Med/ Atlantic region"

    Copper mining in the Balkans begins quite early. Might there be a connection, given the metal industry associated with the Beaker folk?

    "95% of linguists DISAGREE with your statement and avocate a Chalcolithic -steppe scenario, for right or wrong"

    If you're implying that 95% of linguists may be a bit in the dark, I tend to agree. I think Michael Frachetti's work strongly suggests that at least some aspects of the steppe scenario are deeply problematic.

    Slightly OT, but I found and read the article by Andrew Garrett that you mentioned a while back. His ideas about linguistic convergence are fascinating, I thought, and certainly a step in the right direction, but his grasp of ancient history had me laughing out loud. He parrots Mallory's claim that Indo-Iranian tribes from the Eurasian steppe "absorbed a suite of religious institutions" from the BMAC, when there isn't a shred of compelling evidence to support such an assertion.

    Best I can tell, that claim must depend upon Viktor Sarianidi's unsustainable speculations and contradicts what we may glean from Bactrian-Margiana iconography. If it was true, then the Indo-Iranians were converted to some species of goddess worship and surely that cannot be what either Mallory or his adherents intend.

    ReplyDelete
  24. "As to where they may have come from, if not indigenous to Iberia for thousands of years,"

    If, and it's only an opinion, the expansion was based on developing a cattle-centric version of farming that was viable above the southern coastal line that took in Greece, Southern Italy etc then that would imply neolithic farmers spreading along the Atlantic Coast - because fishing could compensate for crop problems - would have been at least the catalyst by introducing cattle.

    I've tended to assume they were Dienekes' blue atlanto-med group as they always looked (to me anyway) like they spread out from the coast in a more SW->NE kind of way.

    A second possibility is miners coming north after copper, silver and gold finding that their draft animals - as cattle were mostly draft animals at the time - got fatter faster and produced more milk grazing the lush grass along the Atlantic coast.

    ReplyDelete
  25. "As to where they may have come from, if not indigenous to Iberia for thousands of years,"

    If, and it's only an opinion, the expansion was based on developing a cattle-centric version of the neolithic farming package that was viable above the southern coastal line that took in Greece, Southern Italy, Southern Portugal etc then that would imply neolithic farmers spreading along the Atlantic coast - using fishing to compensate for crop problems - would have been at least the catalyst by introducing cattle.

    I've tended to assume they were Dienekes' blue atlanto-med group as they always looked (to me anyway) like they spread out from the coast in a more SW->NE kind of way.

    A second possibility is miners coming north after copper, silver and gold finding that their draft animals - as cattle were mostly draft animals at the time - got fatter faster and produced more milk grazing the lush grass along the Atlantic coast.

    I'm inclined more to the miner version.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Keltos emigrated from Sicily, according to Appian.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I think that people are often guilty about of just leaping to conclusions just becuause one new piece of evidence (which is actually not so new) has arisen. Just because the spread of Hg H might ''appear'' to parallel the spread of Beakers, it hasn't relly solved anything. That's interpreting data prima facie.

    I can tell you now that whole Bell Beaker package did NOT start in Iberia. Rather, only the actual Bell Beaker 'pottery decoration' style first surfaced there. All the other aspects of BB culture (eg tumuli, weapons in graves) still have a more "Eastern' origin, ie Corded Ware culture . So it was a fusion of traditions, no "migration" from Iberia.

    Archaeologists have moved away from explaining everything in terms of migration, yet that's all some enthusiast geneticists appear to do (?!)

    Lets not forget non-demographic phenomena which could account for genetic patterns, ie drift and selection.

    ReplyDelete
  28. It has long been the case that ancient DNA studies have focused attention on mtDNA and then gone on to make sweeping claims about the rest of the DNA. Since mtDNA is among the least correlated with consanguinity of human DNA and Y-Chromosome the most, this is, at best, a highly suspect way of determining national* origins. When confronting these sweeping imputations, the (15 years or so) old excuse for this has been that mitochondria are numerous in comparison to nuclear DNA, and that therefore ignorance of the Y-Chromosome data is "understandable". The problem is this merely excuses ignorance -- it does not excuse sweeping imputation based on the ignorance.

    However, even the excuse for ignorance is no longer valid given the fact that entire genomes are being reconstructed from samples far older than neolithic.

    What excuse can Brotherton et al, or their apologists offer for this ignorance?

    ReplyDelete
  29. Va highlander :

    "Connections with west Balkans/ NW Greece are definitely attested, and ''could'' provide a seaborne PIE 'link' to the west Med/ Atlantic region"

    Copper mining in the Balkans begins quite early. Might there be a connection, given the metal industry associated with the Beaker folk?"

    Definitely there were east-west links, but nothing definite based on clear typological links. However, despite the "iberian" origin of the Bell Beaker decoration itself, the other aspects of the culture, ie Tumular solitary burials , weapons inclusions, etc apparently point to Corded Ware inspiration, from what I've read.

    As for linguistics, I personally agree with a Bronze Age chronology for PIE, but not a Pontic steppe geography.

    ReplyDelete
  30. @Average Joe I doub that R1b was present in Europe pre Neolithic, most likely R1b belongs to one of the first Neolithic farmer waves into Western Europe.

    ReplyDelete
  31. @Mooreisbetter
    My how quickly you have implicitly reversed your "R1b recently came from the East" theory.

    It came from the West but it reached the West itself during the earlier Neolithic with one of the earliest expansion of farmers from the East and not during the Paleolithic. Alone the fact that the autosomal DNA of Bell Beaker farmers shows in no way difference to other early farmers throughout Europe (where Haplogroup R1b was not found yet) just supports this theory. If we assumed R1b came from a different Paleolithic than Neolithic origin, we would have to assume that the Bell Beaker farmers have at least slightly different autosomal DNA. But they don't.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Lots of data here. I got quite excited. But not much enlightenment in the end.

    All I am picking up is:

    (1) In Figure 2 part c, The LKB bunch with Jordan and the Arabian Peninsula rather than any of the eastern and northern mediterranean populations they should have flowed through (assuming a northern mediterranean route into Europe). Either they did not go that way, or they did not have much genetic impact as they travelled through, or even at their destination. If this does represent a migration wave they did not bring many/any of their women.


    Bell Beakers bunch with the modern Iberians and the Middle Neolithic with the modern Western Isles/France, which seems quite reasonable. This is consistent with either a culture emerging out of the resident population OR total replacement.

    (2) From Figure 1. I hoped to see something like the earliest group (LKB) closer to the root with other subcultures either branching off from LBK (representing arrival in Europe and later cultural innovations) or forming separate groups (representing multiple migrations/expansions into Europe). But it just looks like a random mess to me. Closer to the second scenario, but not conclusively so.

    The earliest Eurpeans in this study, the neolithic LBK folk, already include multiple H1 (the major group in modern H)variants. So at the time of LBK, H1 had already started its big expansion. Clearly they (LBK) did not start it. Whether it started in the Near East, Iberia or North Africa will hopefully become clear eventually.

    ReplyDelete
  33. "It came from the West but it reached the West itself during the earlier Neolithic with one of the earliest expansion of farmers from the East and not during the Paleolithic."

    And where is the Y-haplogroup of Magdalenian hunters, who occupied Western Europe after the end of the Ice Age? Has it died out mysteriously during the Neolithic without leaving any traces?

    The theory about the origin of R1b-M269 in the Near East is funny. In reality, the two major West European R1b-M269 lineages (R1b-S116 and R1b-U106) were separated as early as during the Ice Age. R1b-S116 belongs to the Magdalenian culture, while R1b-U106 may represent descendants of the Badegoulian culture, who survived in the proximity of the Big Iceberg.

    ReplyDelete
  34. And where is the Y-haplogroup of Magdalenian hunters, who occupied Western Europe after the end of the Ice Age? Has it died out mysteriously during the Neolithic without leaving any traces?

    The theory about the origin of R1b-M269 in the Near East is funny. In reality, the two major West European R1b-M269 lineages (R1b-S116 and R1b-U106) were separated as early as during the Ice Age. R1b-S116 belongs to the Magdalenian culture, while R1b-U106 may represent descendants of the Badegoulian culture, who survived in the proximity of the Big Iceberg.

    ReplyDelete
  35. First, I want to clarify some confusion, here. Bell Beaker (BB) is Chalcolithic and ends with the beginning of the Bronze Age,locally, about 1,000 years later. It, as well as its Iberian Copper Age predecessors, are therefor rather (~2,500 years!) late in terms of Copper Age in Europe, and started when the Aegean and northern Balkans already transitioned to the Bronze Age.

    There is no archaeological evidence that the pre-BB Iberian Copper Age people received their knowledge in one swoop from some advanced place far away; their technique was different, and - as mentioned above - in the European hot spots of the time, transition to the Bronze Age was already under way. So, local diffusion from, e.g., the western Alps seems more plausible. As such, an eastward spread of IE (Celtic) from Iberia due to copper production and trade can be pretty much ruled out as rather anachronistic. Conversely, north of the Alps, with some gradient away from the northern Balkans/Pontic region, IE clearly was already spoken.

    There is strong evidence that from around the Rhine area eastward, BB took on local agriculturalist customs of the time. This, of course, very likely would have included taking on IE as a language, too. Since there is strongly decreasing evidence of Celtic (as a language) further east of the Rhine, it appears that Celtic started to form in that general (left bank) area during this process, with the conventional early cultural (but, especially initially, not necessarily linguistically) Celtic places to the east of it.

    As to the incredibly increasing spread of mtDNA H throughout Europe, even though I think it was present throughout the Mesolithic, already, I cannot see any other reason than diseases, at the moment. We don't see regional clumps, and we don't see proper migrations or cultural domination, and we don't see a cultural vector (such as elite domination with male DNA) to explain it.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Dr Rob,

    "Archaeologists have moved away from explaining everything in terms of migration, yet that's all some enthusiast geneticists appear to do (?!)"

    Hear, hear!

    "However, despite the "iberian" origin of the Bell Beaker decoration itself, the other aspects of the culture, ie Tumular solitary burials , weapons inclusions, etc apparently point to Corded Ware inspiration, from what I've read."

    That is certainly what is suggested in the relevant Wiki articles, which unfortunately supply most of what I know of the subject. Those entries also suggest that Corded Ware itself was not a monolithic entity but rather a diffusion of cultural and technological elements from multiple contemporary peoples. Frachetti, mentioned earlier, has proposed a similar pattern on the eastern steppe. I suspect that such piecemeal adoption and adaptation was more the rule than the exception.

    "As for linguistics, I personally agree with a Bronze Age chronology for PIE, but not a Pontic steppe geography."

    I should enjoy seeing you expand upon that statement, sometime. I'm unsure whether a single expansion event can explain what we observe, whatever the timing.

    For what it's worth, I also doubt the Pontic-steppe geography offered for PIE. Tocharian presents one problem, one quite possibly fatal to the idea, but there are probably others. Our host has suggested that this language may be linked to the BMAC. I feel that's a definite possibility but for somewhat different reasons. If true, to my mind it suggests the spread of at least one branch of Indo-European as early as the fourth millennium BCE.

    ReplyDelete
  37. In reality, the two major West European R1b-M269 lineages (R1b-S116 and R1b-U106) were separated as early as during the Ice Age. R1b-S116 belongs to the Magdalenian culture, while R1b-U106 may represent descendants of the Badegoulian culture, who survived in the proximity of the Big Iceberg.

    What evidence do you have to back up this claim?

    ReplyDelete
  38. Va Highlander.

    I am trying to write an article on PIE in Europe: genesis and expansion. If I ever write it and get published, I'll gladly share it with you

    And, yes, Franchetti is a sorely needed new light on Eurasian work. His approach will overturn everything we think we know about from IE to Scythians. The very same principle applies to BBs, Halstatt, etc. In fact a similar line of arguement re: 'arhcaeological cultures', was written in "Celtic from the West" monograph.

    And Tochariaans - They're a puzzle to say the least. But Im wanting an Anatolian origin for them. Ivanov highlights numerous similarities b/w Tocharian and Anatolian. As Dienekes has said, they probably are a splinter of a group who drifted east on the Silk Road.

    ReplyDelete
  39. And where is the Y-haplogroup of Magdalenian hunters, who occupied Western Europe after the end of the Ice Age? Has it died out mysteriously during the Neolithic without leaving any traces?

    I think you missed the part where studies revealed all Paleolithic European Hunters and Gatherers belonged mainly to a North European substrata, even the once from Spain. And we know from skeletal remands that Hunters and Gatherers and Farmers lived strictly divided. So there is absolutely NO WAY that R1b might be of paleolithic European origin when the R1b farmers are autosomal exactly the same as the other farmers and differ from the H&G.

    "The theory about the origin of R1b-M269 in the Near East is funny. In reality, the two major West European R1b-M269 lineages (R1b-S116 and R1b-U106) were separated as early as during the Ice Age. R1b-S116 belongs to the Magdalenian culture, while R1b-U106 may represent descendants of the Badegoulian culture, who survived in the proximity of the Big Iceberg."


    Ice Age is a very very broad definition. It started already 100000 BC but alone the fact that this Haplogroup is hardly older than ~20000 yearsI doubt that any of its subclades, especially R1b-S116. You are basing your theory on old, outdated studies from 2000 when the people believed R1b is paleolithic but we are in the year of 2013 and we have found remands of Neolithic farmers which clearly indicate and support a Neolithic origin of R1b.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Until there are clearly proven links among language (Celtic), DNA (hgH) and culture (BB), there will be much confusion, as appears from the many comments to this article. Right now everyone is reading tea leaves.

    ReplyDelete
  41. "Archaeologists have moved away from explaining everything in terms of migration, yet that's all some enthusiast geneticists appear to do (?!)"

    Forty years ago Archaeologists moved away from explaining anything in terms of migration, and the DNA evidence has shown that they were mistaken.

    Of course I'd like to see a much larger number of ancient DNA samples, and more full mito-genome sequences. But the evidence that we have now clearly suggests multiple waves of migration, along with some population continuity. We see mtDNA continuity of U5 from the Paleolithic to the present, and we also see continuity in some of the haplogroup H LBK subclades from the early Neolithic to the present. I think the interesting challenge now is to see if we can tease out the details with more ancient and modern DNA samples.

    ReplyDelete
  42. @Average Joe,

    Klyosov has been claiming the westward North African route of R1b for at least 5 years.

    But I still disbelieve the out-of-Iberia, primarily because the hypothesis of the Iberian origin of Bell Beakers is very far from dominant.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Average Joe said:
    „But how did R1b get to Iberia? By boat? And from where?“

    Dienekes called it his working hypothesis that R1b originated in the highland arch south and west of the Caspian sea.

    Well, by boat, why not? There had been boats and seafaring long before that, even in paleolithic times.


    Dr Rob said:
    „Pardon my sarcasm , but according to which of the zero supporters of Vennmens' outlandish and speculative claims?“

    The man's name is Vennemann, Theo Vennemann. Actually he supports an UP origin for the supposed Vaskonic substrate in large parts of Europe. So his theory does not at all depend on the interpretation of BB as Vaskonic. That said, I think it's even likely that already before the spread of BB there were linguistic connections along the Atlantic region, linked with the spread of megalithism and y-haplogroup I-M26. So, even if BB was IE, which is not certain, there may have been a Vaskonic substrate. In Vennemann's view these megalithic people spoke Semitic languages, BTW...


    Jim said:
    „the biggest problem is chronological. Bell Beaker is way too early to get Celtic to line up with Italic the way it has too for the sound changes to fit.“

    I think one thing's for sure: If Bell Beaker was IE, then certainly it wasn't Celtic, but rather some sort of Proto-Italo-Celtic. It would be the root for a wide array of languages:
    Classical Celtic (Gaelic, Brythonic, Gaulish, etc)
    Tartessian
    Pictish
    Classical Italic (Oscan-Umbrian and Latino-Faliscan)
    Lusitanian
    Ligurian
    Sicel
    Elymian

    And it would have at least influenced Germanic and Venetic.

    In my view it's quite possible that at least some of the Italic languages entered Italy from the northeast, from Hungary and Slovenia, and that these were still ultimately derived from Bell Beaker and predominantly R1b, because BB definitely extended into Hungary.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Michael Boblett said:
    „there's a nice Eupedia article on this indicating a Bronze Age introduction of R1b: http://www.eupedia.com/europe/Haplogroup_R1b_Y-DNA.shtml#history Certainly it's a latecomer, which paradoxically may account for its very high percentages among old Connaught families. Quite likely it came by way of the Maykop and descendent Proto-Italo-Celtic cultures,“

    Eupedia has some really nice maps, but its theories have to be taken with a huge grain of salt. The authors strictly adhere to the Kurgan theory of IE origins, everything is interpreted in light of this theory, which is not at all unequivocally supported by archeologists. And the Eupedia authors even support a Kurgan / North Pontic origin for R1b, which is an adventurous idea, to put it mildly. The earliest attested occurrence of R1b in central Europe in individuals from the BB culture is a devastating blow to the hypothesis that R1b arrived from the North Pontic area via the Danube valley.

    Dr Rob said:
    „However, despite the "iberian" origin of the Bell Beaker decoration itself, the other aspects of the culture, ie Tumular solitary burials , weapons inclusions, etc apparently point to Corded Ware inspiration, from what I've read.“

    What are you talking about? Typical Bell Beaker graves are flat! And often collective. And the inclusion of weapons is an old, widespread custom, it cannot solely be attributed to Corded Ware inspiration. But without a doubt, there were parallels with the Corded Ware; it looks as though BB was a conscious reaction on the Corded Ware to the east, but no simple copy, rather they sought to distinguish themselves from CW.


    Kurti said:
    „Alone the fact that the autosomal DNA of Bell Beaker farmers shows in no way difference to other early farmers throughout Europe (where Haplogroup R1b was not found yet) just supports this theory. If we assumed R1b came from a different Paleolithic than Neolithic origin, we would have to assume that the Bell Beaker farmers have at least slightly different autosomal DNA. But they don't.“

    To my knowledge there is no autsomal DNA of BB people in the literature. It has never been mentioned on this blog. Certainly it would be a great help if we had some BB autosomal DNA, but we don't.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Eurologist said:
    „It, as well as its Iberian Copper Age predecessors, are therefore rather (~2,500 years!) late in terms of Copper Age in Europe, and started when the Aegean and northern Balkans already transitioned to the Bronze Age.“

    Well, it depends on the exactness of the chronology. If the earliest BB really was around 2900 BC, that would be a time where Bronze technology wasn't yet that widespread. According to what I read, bronze technology is attested in Palestine at 3300 BC, in western Asia minor at 2800 BC, on Cyprus 2600 BC...

    ReplyDelete
  46. In my opinion there is a connection between the following things:

    Bell Beaker people
    R1b in western/central Europe
    the Gedrosia component in western/central Europe (from the K12b calculator)
    Dinarics in western/central Europe + Coon's Keltic type and the rather similar Basquids

    Where can the Bell Beaker's Dinaric type be derived from? The contemporary Balkans were still predominantly longheaded. Cyprus did have a similar Dinaroid population which clustered with the BB in one study I read about. I've also read about a similar sample of chalkolithic pirates from Campania in Southern Italy with cultural ties to Asia Minor, which may represent a possible link. It is often pointed out that the Iberian BB were longheaded, unlike their more northern fellows. Maybe the impact of the shortheaded newcomers wasn't as strong in Iberia because the population density of the locals was higher than in the north? Concordantly, the Gedrosia component isn't as strong in Spain and Portugal as it is in France, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark and the British Isles. Apart from the Basques, the Iberian peaks for the Gedrosia component are in Andalusia and Catalonia. And in southern Spain you find types like Jean Reno...

    But was Bell Beaker Vaskonic or Proto-Italo-Celtic? The Basques are really puzzling. Very high on R1b AND Gedrosia, and there's the Basquid type. But on the other hand they have virtually nothing of the West_Asian component, be it K7b or Globe10 or Globe13... If there was a demic influx of Dinaroid R1b bearers from West Asia, the Basques almost would have to have a lot of the West_Asian component, if these newcomers were their ethnic ancestors. Really it looks like the Basques don't have the real Gedrosia. The Scots have it! Argyll is a relative peak of West_Asian in northwestern Europe. But if the Basques don't have the real Gedrosia, what have they what looks like it, and how did they get it?

    In my experience, in central Europeans, DNA-segments that are rich in Gedrosia are also high on the West_Asian component. So these components really appear to be linked in central Europeans, but not in Basques.

    Furthermore, even with the K12b Dodecad oracle you get this:
    Argyll = 98% Orkney + 2% Makrani

    The Basques on the other hand are:
    76% Aragon + 24% Sardinian

    The latter comparison is a very bad one by the way, it matches the Basques only very inaccurately. But Aragon is a region where the West_Asian component is relatively low, too. They are probably partly related with the Basques.

    ReplyDelete
  47. I think these notions may help reducing the perplexity:

    - The Keltic and the Basquid type are longheaded and low vaulted. Even though they display Dinaroid features, they are not planoccipital brachycephals. This makes the longheaded nature of the Iberian BB people less anomalous. The question remains why the more northern BB people were more often planoccipital brachycephals. Was there a shortheaded nucleus that migrated from Iberia northward? Or did they acquire their brachycephaly through mixture with more northern indigenous people? After all, the Danish Borreby type had a similarly short- and high vaulted tendency.

    - In these admixture analyses even 0% of a component does not mean complete absence of admixture with this component. I guess the Basques do have some low level West_Asian admixture, it's just very low. But probably from this they acquired their R1b and their Gedrosia alleles.

    - The constellation that a population has more Gedrosia than West_Asian isn't restricted to Basques, but it's a general tendency in western Europe. For instance, Argyll, Orkney and Ireland all have more Gedrosia than West_Asian. So therefore the Basques are not completely different in this respect, it's just much more extreme in them. Probably there was some positive selection in favour of the Gedrosia alleles.

    We may wonder: Did the Basques start with strong West_Asian admixture and somehow „breed it out“? Or was it the other way round: Did they start with low level West_Asian and Gedrosia admixture and was the latter somehow positively selected? I think the latter seems much more probable. In this case we may conclude that the incoming R1b-/West_Asian element probably wasn't ethnically Basque, but rather IE.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Dr Rob:

    "If I ever write it and get published, I'll gladly share it with you."

    Excellent!

    "But Im wanting an Anatolian origin for [the Tocharians]. ... As Dienekes has said, they probably are a splinter of a group who drifted east on the Silk Road."

    I don't object to an Anatolian origin but my first question would be, why did they drift eastward? Part of what would later become the Silk Routes, in this case a trade network stretching from the upper reaches of the Amu Darya to Anatolia and Predynastic Egypt, was already in use by the second half of the fourth millennium BCE. But it's a bit difficult imagining a language traveling east that way, unless of course that language was already spoken in the oases along that route and that takes us back to a possible eastward expansion of PIE during the Neolithic. To be honest, the implications of that make me nervous.

    Simon_W:

    "According to what I read, bronze technology is attested in Palestine at 3300 BC..."

    Arsinical bronze comes first. If you're talking about tin-alloyed bronze, then I should not be surprised to find that it originated much farther east, quite possibly in what is now Afghanistan, and somewhat earlier. Afghanistan is the only place on earth with a deep metallurgical tradition and both copper and tin deposits found in close proximity.

    ReplyDelete
  49. ^ Basic head form isn't a very reliable indicator of ancestral origins. Tooth morphology is much more accurate in that regard and correlates closely with genetics. See here...

    http://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/vital/access/manager/Repository/unige:12659

    Also, there weren't any important migrations from West Asia into Western and Central Europe after the Neolithic. The problem is that the expansions and genetic mixing happened much later than when all the pieces of the puzzle arrived in Europe.

    Early Neolithic groups had origins in different parts of the Near East, and were kept apart in Europe because they were adapted to very specific ecological niches. See here...

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440313000617

    Thus...

    Mediterranean Neolithic = Oetzi/Sardinian type influence.

    LBK = West Asian/Gedrosia-like admixture.

    Corded Ware/Unetice = a revival of Mesolithic (North European) genetic influence in Central Europe after the near expatriation of LBK groups and their descendants.

    If you look at where LBK farmers came from, it should definitely explain why they were very different from the Mediterranean/Oetzi and Sardinian-like farmers who were separated from them by the Alps and ecology.

    http://img838.imageshack.us/img838/4176/haakmtdnadistances.png

    ReplyDelete
  50. Simon W:

    IN your responce to me
    "What are you talking about? Typical Bell Beaker graves are flat! And often collective. And the inclusion of weapons is an old, widespread custom, it cannot solely be attributed to Corded Ware inspiration. But without a doubt, there were parallels with the Corded Ware; it looks as though BB was a conscious reaction on the Corded Ware to the east, but no simple copy, rather they sought to distinguish themselves from CW."

    - the short reply is: your quite wrong

    - to elaborate: the burial rite of the BB era was necesarily very diverse, not surprising given the bredth of its coverage. BB cultures certainily DID have tumui burials, cist cairn buriuals, etc. Yes some were without external markers (tumuli or stone cairns), and yes, collective burials also continued. Most were inhumations, yet you also had cremation rite , esp as you approach the Carpathian / middle Danube regions. The introduction of solitary burials, marked by external features, and weapons inclusions was undoubdtely a new phenomenon; one not previusly seen in the preceding Late Neolithic of western Europe. Its immediate precedents are definitively in the east (ie Corded Ware culture).

    - Now certainly, BB expressed themselves differently, and adpoted and modified those features in their own meaning, of course. Whether this was 'oppositional' to CWC groups is possible, however, unlikely. They both were such wide- spread phenomena that it is unlikely that they represented some aggregate ideology. Rather each were, respectively, supra-regional , supra-ethnic phenomena incorporated onto local ''ethnies''. You'd be hard-pressed making an arguement for a BB vs CWC kind of scenario.

    ReplyDelete
  51. I have some serious doubts if my above proposal really works as an explanation. Because, if part of the West_Asian alleles are positively selected and get more frequent, then the West_Asian component ought to increase as well. If these alleles are part of the West_Asian component in the beginning, they should stay West_Asian even if they get more frequent than other West_Asian alleles.

    No, I think the key, the crucial insight may be rather this: The Basque Gedrosia alleles are found in the West_Asian component (because everything in the Gedrosia component is either part of West_Asian or South_Asian), but, obviously, they are also found in the Atlantic_Baltic and/or Southern component. They are ambiguous. Part of the Gedrosia alleles are ambiguous. West_Asian admixture isn't necessary to explain them, therefore the ADMIXTURE program doesn't use this component to explain the Basques. That may be a consequence of the mutual influence and exchange between the Atlantic_Baltic and the Caucasus_Gedrosia components Dienekes which Dienekes once showed in a diagram.

    ReplyDelete
  52. I will again point out a number of anachronisms in many of the posts above.

    It is well known that early BB copper knowledge (~2,800 BC), and that of their local predecessors (~3,000) was very late in Europe and technologically simple and outdated. Production and use of copper started in Europe in ~Serbia ~5,500 - 5,000 BC, with no external input. Again: copper production technology is local to Balkan Europe and was not imported from Anatolia nor from any other place. Copper was imported into other parts of Central Europe starting with the demise of LBK around 5,000 BC, and was locally produced there by ~ 4,200 BC - which is also about the same time frame for SE Spain. Note that Greece, so close to Anatolia, lags behind ~2,000 years, and so does Portugal - so close to Spain. In summary: copper production definitely did not advance West via shipping routes along the Mediterranean.

    The origin argument for bronze production and use is more difficult, (i) because one has to distinguish between arsenic and tin bronze, and (ii) because Anatolian - and in general Middle Eastern - dates for its first production are far from certain. For now, it looks as if arsenic bronze was first and independently produced before ~3,000 BC in SE Europe, and tin bronze was produced in Anatolia at most a couple of centuries before secure dates in Europe (~2,500 - 2,300 for mainland Greece to C Europe - IMO way too late for an introduction of IE to W Pontic to N Balkan region).

    This means that arsenic bronze was well-understood in SE Europe before BB, and tin bronze was beginning to be understood in the East before BB started to really take off East of the Rhine. As such, BB is clearly a late phenomenon not centered around technology, but rather centered around securing trade posts along copper (and other) trade routes that had existed for at least a couple of millennia. And "securing" may also explain the focus on archery, since archeology has shown that it was not used for hunting.

    Now, BB entered the Rhine area around ~2,500 BC, when there is ample evidence of IE to have spread that far, from the east (the northern Balkans and W Pontic). And given that in much of Europe BB made up only 10% to 20% of the population, it is of course much more likely that they adopted the local language (but then spread that further, e.g., SW into Iberia).

    IMO, BB and the early copper age had no impact on language (nor haplogroup) spread in Europe. However, later BB (locally very late copper and early bronze age) and subsequent processes most likely did.

    ReplyDelete
  53. eurologist
    "As to the incredibly increasing spread of mtDNA H throughout Europe, even though I think it was present throughout the Mesolithic, already, I cannot see any other reason than diseases, at the moment."

    lactose tolerance?

    ReplyDelete
  54. Grey

    I just looked up some data on the distributions. There does not seem to be correlation between lactose tolerance and mtDNA Hg H.

    Also I think this article draws too much conclusion from insufficient data. I love speculating too, but I am an amateur. :)

    ReplyDelete
  55. "Afghanistan is the only place on earth with a deep metallurgical tradition and both copper and tin deposits found in close proximity."

    How long does it take to sail between Iberia and Cornwall?

    A maritime culture centered on southern Portugal might bring shiny metal for jewelry home from any of the places in the network.

    http://s47.radikal.ru/i116/1103/d1/7ad850abb3b2.jpg

    copper axes and tin jewelry in the same workshop?

    This is not to say they invented it or anything but when they did develop it - if the presence of the two metals close together was rare - then that would have given them a distinct advantage over their neighbors in the western end of the med.

    .
    "I don't object to an Anatolian origin but my first question would be, why did they drift eastward?"

    As a general motivation for odd journeys losers in a civil war would always have a strong incentive to pick a direction and keep going.

    ReplyDelete
  56. lactose tolerance?

    Grey,

    I think that any initial correlation of autosomal DNA with uniparental haplogroup would vanish within a few generations - as long as we are talking about an initial minority and free intermarriage.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Just a point. Some people are talking here about "Gedrosia and West Asian" as if these are two different components. West Asian component it self is a composite or ancestral to "Gedrosia and Caucasus" components of K12b.

    ReplyDelete
  58. IN fact the Gedrosia component is the much more unchanged part of West Asian while Caucasus appears like West Asian+Caucasus with North Euro influence.

    ReplyDelete
  59. eurologist:

    "Again: copper production technology is local to Balkan Europe and was not imported from Anatolia nor from any other place."

    While copper smelting may have been developed independently in multiple locations, how do you propose to prove a negative assertion like that?

    And who in this thread has suggested that a copper industry was imported to the Balkans from Anatolia?

    "Note that Greece, so close to Anatolia, lags behind ~2,000 years, and so does Portugal - so close to Spain. In summary: copper production definitely did not advance West via shipping routes along the Mediterranean."

    The evidence you offer cannot prove such a negative assertion. It doesn't even make your assertion likely. There is no reason whatsoever to think that metallurgy spread like ink through blotting paper for the simple reason that the necessary resources are not uniformly distributed. This is just common sense.

    As for bronze, I suspect you would agree that there is little, if any, reason to suspect an independent development in Europe. Long-distance trade networks were well established by that date.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Mediterranean Neolithic = Oetzi/Sardinian type influence.

    LBK = West Asian/Gedrosia-like admixture.


    How does that model square with Gok4?

    ReplyDelete
  61. Gok4 came from a Funnelbeaker (TRB) burial on the west coast of Sweden, so it's unlikely she had any direct Central European Neolithic ancestry.

    TRB groups were part of the Megalithic tradition, and so the ancestors of Gok4 most likely made their way north from the Mediterranean via the Atlantic. As a result, she's probably more closely related to Impressed Ware/Cardial Ware/Oetzi/modern Sardinians, than to early Neolithic LBK farmers from Central Europe.

    LBK farmers moved quickly into Central Europe via the Balkans and the Danube. Apparently their behavior fit the stepping stone model very well. If so, this is very important, because it can explain why a genetically Sardinian-like farmer was present in Bulgaria during the early Iron Age, several thousand years after the LBK farmers moved through there.

    Anyway, I guess we need autosomal DNA from early LBK farmers from Central Europe. The TRB farmer and Oetzi can't be used as proxies for them.

    ReplyDelete
  62. @Dr Rob

    About tocharians: "But Im wanting an Anatolian origin for them."

    Why's that? Because of the lack of (non-IE) Anatolian loanwords (Hatti, Hurrian or semitic, for instance - all east of the known IE Anatolian languages during bronze age) in Tocharian languages?


    "Ivanov highlights numerous similarities b/w Tocharian and Anatolian."

    The resemblances are likely a result of the fact that they are probably the oldest branches of "IE" and that they split first hence conserving some archaic occurences of the early "IE", but Germanic, balto-slavic (or even latin IIRC) seem even closer in relationship, vocabulary-wise, IIRC.

    If we go that way, why not say Scandinavian lask (salmon) and Tocharian A lask (fish) - the only other matches are in balto-slavic and nowhere else, if I'm not mistaken - is the proof that Tocharian came from the north-east of europe :)


    "they probably are a splinter of a group who drifted east on the Silk Road"

    At the time of the silk road? And without indo-iranian loanwords? (the indo-iranian loanwords in the Tocharian texts are late loanwords and due to the spread of buddhism, AFAIK)

    Besides, the 2 (or maybe actually at least 3?) tocharian languages are not dialects of the same language, they really are true quite diverging languages. This implies that they were in the Tarim basin for a very long time. Like the time of the first tracks of settlement in this place, during the bronze age.

    The fact is that we can follow a genetic/archaeological/"morphologic type" trail from the Pontic steppes to the Tarim (via south Siberia) which provides an obvious option.

    As for the fact that Tocharians cultivated cereals... so did the peoples in Srednij Stog (Apparently a scientist contested that the seed impressions in Srednij Stog's potteries had something to do with agriculture and claimed it was wild seeds, but how certain is that, especially in the light of the genetic link between south Siberian Afanasevo and an early Xinjiang population such as the Xiaohe - see below to see what I mean), so no dead end on this path (the modern matches of the aDNA of south Siberia (Kayzer et al, 2009) could easily point to a source in the north-east balkan and thus actually a little further east). The fact that there are no tracks of agriculture (but there were grinding stones) in Afanasevo (yet?) doesn't mean it didn't exist as a minor phenomenon (like it always had been at that time among kurgan-type cultures, wester - if we accept the Srednij Stog chain of evidences).

    The earliest settlement in the east Tarim and North-west Gansu (appearing before 2,100 BCE) were both having sheeps/cattle/horse (like Afanasevo) and cultivating cereals (same type as the ones found near the Dniepr in Srednij Stog) - the famous Loulan Beauty in Eastern Tarim Basin around 1,800 BCE was burried with wheat... It so happens that the study Chunxiang Li et al 2010 found that some of this early Xinjiang population (the Xiaohe people) were fully R1a1a, harboring a few west Eurasian mtDNA lineages (having matches as far as north-western Europe) and also having east Asian lineages that pointed to south Siberia (namely mtDNA C4). It's fully congruent with the South Siberian results' aDNA of what have to be the Afanasevo substrate (Kayzer et al, 2009).

    ReplyDelete
  63. Davidski said: Basic head form isn't a very reliable indicator of ancestral origins. Tooth morphology is much more accurate in that regard and correlates closely with genetics. See here...
    http://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/vital/access/manager/Repository/unige:12659

    Agreed, that's a very valuable study, confirming the results of the present mt-DNA study.

    But still, the basic head form of these BB folks was quite distinct and striking, it's not just about brachycephaly vs. dolichocephaly, but about a planoccipital high vaulted form which was not seen in the previous central European and British cultures. For instance in Bohemia, only the male BB people belonged to this type, clearly indicating a male-only migration.


    Dr Rob said: the burial rite of the BB era was necesarily very diverse, not surprising given the bredth of its coverage. BB cultures certainily DID have tumui burials, cist cairn buriuals, etc. Yes some were without external markers (tumuli or stone cairns), and yes, collective burials also continued. Most were inhumations, yet you also had cremation rite , esp as you approach the Carpathian / middle Danube regions. The introduction of solitary burials, marked by external features, and weapons inclusions was undoubdtely a new phenomenon; one not previusly seen in the preceding Late Neolithic of western Europe. Its immediate precedents are definitively in the east (ie Corded Ware culture). 

    My point was: BB certainly wasn't a „Kurganized“ culture in the literal sense of the word, as its typical burial rite wasn't the one of the CWC, i.e. they typically didn't have single graves under a tumulus. Collective graves under cairns are something different. Yes, their solitary burials were something new, but as a rule these weren't under a tumulus.

    And as for the opposition to the CWC, I think Christian Strahm suggested something like this, but I don't know exactly on what grounds...

    There's the orientation of the dead, for instance: in the BB culture you had the males lying on the left hand side with the head in the north, the females on the right side with the head in the south, thus both genders facing towards the east. In the CWC you had the males oriented W-E, the females E-W, both facing towards the south.

    I think the parallels between BB and CWC may well be a consequence of them both being IE, thus having a common origin.


    Eurologist said: given that in much of Europe BB made up only 10% to 20% of the population, it is of course much more likely that they adopted the local language [...] IMO, BB and the early copper age had no impact on language (nor haplogroup) spread in Europe.

    But given the strong connection between haplogroup R1b and Celtic languages, also Italic languages to some extent, and the fact that this haplogroup is first attested in indiviuals from the BB culture; given further the peak of European Gedrosia on the British Isles, especially in Argyll, a component that is related to West_Asian influence and uncommon in southeastern Europe, and which apparently overlaps well with the BB distribution, IMO there is some plausibility in the assumption of a Proto-Italo-Celticity of BB. Especially when you take into account that the north Alpine / south German early bronze age clearly stood in the tradition of BB and western Europe in general, both physically and culturally. While the Unetice culture to the east was closely related with the CWC. Then later, in the middle bronze age, the two traditions were united to the Tumulus culture. Previously the origin of this culture was ascribed to invasions from the Danubian area, but nowadays it's more common to assume a local continuity.

    ReplyDelete
  64. Dienekes said: How does that model square with Gok4?

    Good point. While the TRB isn't exactly the LBK, the TRB origins have to be sought rather in the central European LBK than in the Mediterranean Cardium pottery. And according to a craniometrical cluster analysis by Ilse Schwidetzky, the Swedish neolithic is very similar to the central European middle neolithic Rössen culture, and both are close to LBK. IMO the main difference between the Danubian cultures and the Cardium derived cultures is that the latter seem more strongly dominated by haplogroup G, which in turn seems to imply a stronger presence of the (Southern part of the) Caucasus component, while the former may have had more haplogoup I and Atlantic_Med.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Eurologist said: And given that in much of Europe BB made up only 10% to 20% of the population, it is of course much more likely that they adopted the local language

    That they were in the minority isn't ncessarily a problem, because there's the process called elite dominance. But I have to agree, if we perceive them primarily as traders, rather than as a ruling class of conquerors, it's natural to assume that they were quick in learning the local languages. That they did may be indicated by their re-use of pre-existing collective graves, as if they consciously wanted to tie in with the local traditions. If they didn't bring Italo-Celtic languages with them, I guess the latter most likely arrived with the push from the Danubian area in the middle bronze age. In that case their further expansion would have been one of elite dominance with little effect on the genetic side.

    ReplyDelete
  66. So maybe, in that case, the Gedrosia component didn't spread with BB, but later, with Indoeuropeanized R1b people from central Europe. These may have acquired this component much earlier, when the Lengyel influence spread in central Europe. This would fit perfectly with the Rolloff date of the West_Asian admixture in the French: 4940 BC. Also it would explain better why Gedrosia is actually stronger in northwestern Europe than in Iberia, where BB came from.

    ReplyDelete
  67. So, I finally was able to read a copy of the paper. Here are some points:

    1. While the map points to Iberia, it should be noted that BBC haplogroups appear to almost exclusivly originate from local existing post-LBK CE subgroups, with the only exception being H13. So from that viewpoint, the BBC make-up is genetically very close to the then-local population. I find that very strange, as I would have expected Iberian populations to be very different (post-LGM or cardium-derived). Does this imply that SW Europe underwent the same near-replacement as LBK, by roughly the same people? Where is H13a1a2c found, today? Populations below the already highly-derived A13542G seem to be found in the Caucasus.

    2. Their H age estimate contradicts immediate post-LGM expansion from Iberia (for specific subgroups) - but pre-neolithic H has been found in Iberia. What known movement spread H from SE Europe/ Western Asia to Iberia in mesolithic times?

    3. The discontinuity after LBK is striking. I think we all suspected some replacement - but not what appears to be an almost complete population replacement. Interestingly, the map shows the Balkans/Greece as closest association of LBK with modern populations, which fits with my general notion of an LBK population origin there, and not in Anatolia, with additional (non-H) elements picked up along the way to CE.

    ReplyDelete
  68. But given the strong connection between haplogroup R1b and Celtic languages, also Italic languages to some extent, and the fact that this haplogroup is first attested in indiviuals from the BB culture; given further the peak of European Gedrosia on the British Isles, especially in Argyll, a component that is related to West_Asian influence and uncommon in southeastern Europe, and which apparently overlaps well with the BB distribution, IMO there is some plausibility in the assumption of a Proto-Italo-Celticity of BB. Especially when you take into account that the north Alpine / south German early bronze age clearly stood in the tradition of BB and western Europe in general, both physically and culturally.

    Simon_W,

    As I said - they adopted the then-evolving (pre-proto-Celtic) local language in the Rhine area. Not any further west of that, which IMO was not IE at the time.

    So, yes, BB and following phenomena/ cultures had some impact on spreading IE in Europe - but not the one some people imagine. It was both west and east.

    As far as R1b is concerned, the first attestations seem to always be Central Germany - regardless what time period. That reminds me of the joke in which the policeman asks where the odd man looking around the street lantern lost his keys. He replies he doesn't know - but at least there is light, here, to search...

    ReplyDelete
  69. wagg:

    "At the time of the silk road? And without indo-iranian loanwords?"

    Why not? There is no compelling evidence that Indo-Iranian was spoken along the trade routes of southern Central Asia in the late fourth millennium BCE. Mallory swallows the idea whole and coughs it up again because it makes the narrative that he sells seem plausible, not because the claim is necessarily true. It rests wholly on the easily-dismissed speculations of V I Sarianidi, a man who also refused to consider potsherds as evidence because they could be blown by the wind!

    "Besides, the 2 (or maybe actually at least 3?) tocharian languages are not dialects of the same language, they really are true quite diverging languages. This implies that they were in the Tarim basin for a very long time."

    Wiki claims that the two probably diverged in the first millennium BCE. The mud-brick construction of the Hami Oasis is older than that, something without precedent on the western steppe but common in the oases of Central Asia.

    "As for the fact that Tocharians cultivated cereals... so did the peoples in Srednij Stog"

    More specifically the wheat known to the Afanasevo and the people of the Tarim came from toward South Asia, not from across the Russian steppe.

    "The earliest settlement in the east Tarim and North-west Gansu (appearing before 2,100 BCE) were both having sheeps/cattle/horse (like Afanasevo)..."

    No. The Afanasevo were vertically-transhumant sheep herders, a mode of existence without parallel on the west Eurasian steppe but once again well-attested in southern Central Asia. Cattle and horses were of little if any importance in the east until after the advent of nomadic pastoralism on the Eurasian steppe, a date too late to account for Afanasevo.

    Conversely, the agricultural tribes of the Central-Asian oases were already established as far east as the Zarafshan Valley by the dawn of the third-millennium BCE, reasonably coincident with the appearance of Afanasevo in southern Siberia.

    Grey:

    "As a general motivation for odd journeys losers in a civil war would always have a strong incentive to pick a direction and keep going."

    Point to this civil war and I shall happily consider it. Perhaps more to the point, why would such refugees be wandering across such inhospitable ground as the deserts of southern Central Asia? This is precisely my point.

    ReplyDelete
  70. @ WAGG; you said


    "Why's that? {anatolian origin for Tochairans] Because of the lack of (non-IE) Anatolian loanwords (Hatti, Hurrian or semitic, for instance - all east of the known IE Anatolian languages during bronze age) in Tocharian languages?

    :Perhaps, and Im merely brainstorming. TBH the Tocharians have me, like Im sure most people, stumped ! But Ivanov has identified a few lexical correspondences between Mesopotamian milieu of cultural terms and Tocharian

    "Ivanov highlights numerous similarities b/w Tocharian and Anatolian.' To which you replied "
    The resemblances are likely a result of the fact that they are probably the oldest branches of "IE" and that they split first hence conserving some archaic occurences of the early "IE", but Germanic, balto-slavic (or even latin IIRC) seem even closer in relationship, vocabulary-wise, IIRC. "


    :well that depends on which source you trust. And remember it is only ASSUMED that Tocharian is the oldest branch. Remember that it is attested much much later than its posited 'genesis'. And lets not even go into the faultiness of the simplistic family tree model, anyway

    "If we go that way, why not say Scandinavian lask (salmon) and Tocharian A lask (fish) - the only other matches are in balto-slavic and nowhere else, if I'm not mistaken - is the proof that Tocharian came from the north-east of europe :) "

    : Maybe;

    ReplyDelete
  71. @ WAGG

    I said "they probably are a splinter of a group who drifted east on the Silk Road" You replied " At the time of the silk road? And without indo-iranian loanwords? (the indo-iranian loanwords in the Tocharian texts are late loanwords and due to the spread of buddhism, AFAIK) "

    : At >>what time,, ? You are again assuming a time for the Tocharian spread without definitive proof either way. You are only assuming that Tocharian spread in Bronze Age based on north-European features of Tarim mummies and 'family'tree' linguistic model


    "The fact is that we can follow a genetic/archaeological/"morphologic type" trail from the Pontic steppes to the Tarim (via south Siberia) which provides an obvious option."

    : perhaps, but have ALL Tarim mummies been excavated ? and are they all blonde ("Nordic")? Their genetic composition wasa ctually diverse, as shown by mtDNA, and even moreso if we sampled what really counts - autosomal DNA. Y DNA is just a potential red herring. And we do not know for certain where this R1a1 came from; it has not been typed for Z 93 (Sth Asia) or Z 280 or M458 (rastern Europe) or something wholly different (and potentially extinct)

    "As for the fact that Tocharians cultivated cereals... so did the peoples in Srednij Stog (Apparently a scientist contested that the seed impressions in Srednij Stog's potteries had something to do with agriculture and claimed it was wild seeds, but how certain is that, especially in the light of the genetic link between south Siberian Afanasevo and an early Xinjiang population such as the Xiaohe - see below to see what I mean), so no dead end on this path (the modern matches of the aDNA of south Siberia (Kayzer et al, 2009) could easily point to a source in the north-east balkan and thus actually a little further east). The fact that there are no tracks of agriculture (but there were grinding stones) in Afanasevo (yet?) doesn't mean it didn't exist as a minor phenomenon (like it always had been at that time among kurgan-type cultures, wester - if we accept the Srednij Stog chain of evidences)."

    : The entire state of steppe archaeology is still mostly stuck at 1950s discourse. Increasingly scholars like Kohl and Franchetti will unravel more realistic and nuanced interpretations of the arhcaeological record, suffice it to say, at the moment it is uninspiring.

    SIMON W said "I think the parallels between BB and CWC may well be a consequence of them both being IE, thus having a common origin."

    : Neither BB nor CWC were IE. IE spread in Europe considerably later. ie from M2.

    ReplyDelete
  72. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  73. Va
    "As a general motivation for odd journeys losers in a civil war would always have a strong incentive to pick a direction and keep going."

    "Point to this civil war and I shall happily consider it. Perhaps more to the point, why would such refugees be wandering across such inhospitable ground as the deserts of southern Central Asia? This is precisely my point."

    You want a reason why a group of people might set off along the Silk road before it was the Silk road and conflict is a possible reason i.e. staying where they were wasn't an option for death-based reasons.

    Pretty straightforward. Half the foundation myths in the med are based on that idea and a few of them are probably true.

    The second point is they wouldn't neccessarily have *known* how difficult a journey it was going to be when they started. For all they knew there was a land of milk and honey 200 miles away not 2000.

    I'm not saying it's true but you seem to be saying it's not possible when it obviously is.

    ReplyDelete
  74. Separate point which struck me and i find interesting is in geographical path of least resistance terms i think there is a circular nature to this with the southern half going

    -> thessaly/greece
    -> med coast
    -> southern portugal

    and the northern half going

    -> thessaly/greece
    -> danube
    -> rhine
    -> atlantic coast
    -> southern portugal

    making the whole circle

    -> thessaly/greece
    -> danube
    -> rhine
    -> atlantic coast
    -> southern portugal
    -> med coast
    -> thessaly/greece

    so an expansion at one point on the circle in one direction can have a domino effect around the whole circle over the ensuing centuries.

    .
    I think there's a similar but smaller geographical circle going
    -> southern portugal
    -> med coast
    -> rhone
    -> seine
    -> atlantic coast
    -> southern portugal

    ReplyDelete
  75. RE: Iberia/metallurgy

    Spontaneously, the first thing that I thought when thinking old Iberic peninsula, metallurgy and expansion to the north-east is the odd fact that Silver is said zilbar in Basque which is similar to german silber, Icelandic silfur, russian serebr-, etc... (I'm no specialist but I assume latin sulfur is also related with this root (latin F from B: brother/ latin frater; german bieber / latin fiber (= beaver); (to) bear/ latin ferro, etc...)), but difficult to make something of it...

    OTOH, the ancient celtic root for silver is quite different: it's the same that the Latin one argent- (related to Hittite harki meaning light-colored; white and Tocharian A árki meaning white).

    ReplyDelete
  76. @ Va_Highlander

    "No. The Afanasevo were vertically-transhumant sheep herders, a mode of existence without parallel on the west Eurasian steppe but once again well-attested in southern Central Asia."

    What I've read (Mallory and Anthony in this case) gives Afanasevo about similar with what is found on the Pontic region at this time, and anyway, it fits with archeology (material culture similar to the Yamnaya/repin ones - similar potteries to Yamnaya ones, similar cultual objects, similar funerary practices (fully "Kurgan culture" type), a few axes typical of east Yamnaya were also found, pastoralism, there is also a trail of west Eurasian cattle in south Siberia (ex 1, ex 2), copper and gold metallurgy (the metal artefacts were typical of the Yamnaya horizon), silver metallurgy which was rare then but existing in southern Russia ... and simply the geography (why would south central Asians would go that north, beyond the Altai - at least the population from the west remained at the same latitude, more or less) and the chronology) and with genetics ... and it can also easily fit with Linguistics as well, as the place of Tocharian within the tree of IE languages is easily explained that way (and the lack of loanwords from known influential language families (except from east Asian languages (proto-Altaic/family family)) can also be explained by its "isolation".
    Besides, Tocharians might have borrowed some Finno-ugric (e.g. Tocharian A & B kälk-, kalák- (=to go) & Finnish kulkea (=to go), also Tocharian had 9 noun declension cases and it is said (well, at least where I've read it) that several seem to have been borrowed from Finno-ugric).


    "Conversely, the agricultural tribes of the Central-Asian oases were already established as far east as the Zarafshan Valley by the dawn of the third-millennium BCE, reasonably coincident with the appearance of Afanasevo in southern Siberia."

    The only problem with that is that the population was clearly originating from the west (as for the "cultural/economical" connections I mentionned it above): Same europoid morphology than in the Pontic region (called proto-europoid by east european archeologists), west Eurasian haplogroups (both male and female) with modern matches deep in Europe (Kayzer et al, 2009; Chunxiang Li et al 2010), non-negligible presence of light pigmentation in hair and eyes (Bouakaze et al, 2008; most of the tested individuals clustering w/ Europeans in the graph of the study), presence of a north European autosomal components in the region (found as far as the Yakuts (who also have a little percentage of male and female lineages similar to the aDNA of south Siberia, and thus Afanasevo)) apparently confirmed in the recently published Der Sarkissian study.

    So unless we ignore the recent European and Chinese genetic studies related to the matter, there is no doubt on their nature.

    If it wasn't enough, even specific dental characteristics point to Europoid populations.

    I'll add that Han Kangxin from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences of Beijing had examined 302 Tarim mummies skulls (Han Kangxin 1994; 1998) and according to him, the closest ancient populations were the populations from the Afanasevo culture and the Andronovo culture.

    ReplyDelete
  77. @Dr Rob

    "At what time? You are again assuming a time for the Tocharian spread without definitive proof either way. You are only assuming that Tocharian spread in Bronze Age based on north-European features of Tarim mummies and 'family'tree' linguistic model"

    Actually, I mentionned the divergent state of the Tocharian languages with each others (they're not dialects of the same language, they're different languages) that implied a long time of existence on site (and the economy of the earliest settlers (east of Tarim and north-west Gansu before 2,100 BCE) also fits w/ the Tocharian vocabulary and the timeframe, so no problem here).

    Why should we imagine several waves of migrants from the west (of the Tarim Basin) all ending up on the other side of such high mountains and of this huge harsh desert? Weird.

    I'm assuming there was only two major "waves": One that came from south Siberia, as hinted by their lineages (both west Eurasian and East Asian (Here, mtDNA C4 is of major importance - and it is the main one that led the chinese team (Chunxiang Li et al 2010) to conclude the Xiaohe population came from south Siberia)) and one Saka (that I assume are responsible for the arrival of most of the Y-DNA R2a, J2, etc.. and the South Asian/West Asian autosomal elements found nowadays in the tarim). AFAIK This 2 waves thing is in accordance with what I've read from Mair and Mallory.


    "perhaps, but have ALL Tarim mummies been excavated ? and are they all blonde ("Nordic")? Their genetic composition was actually diverse, as shown by mtDNA, and even moreso if we sampled what really counts - autosomal DNA. Y DNA is just a potential red herring. And we do not know for certain where this R1a1 came from; it has not been typed for Z 93 (Sth Asia) or Z 280 or M458 (eastern Europe) or something wholly different (and potentially extinct)"

    The important thing is that Kayzer et al, 2009 showed the concordance of the genetics of the Afanasevo substrate with their Europoid morphology and Chunxiang Li et al. 2010 showed that some of the oldest Tarim mumies had haplogroups concordant with Afanasevo - and East Asian lineages also concordant with south Siberia. From this we have a clear path.

    If we consider that the Xiaohe people from the 2010 study was NOT representative of these early bronze age east Tarim settlers - despite the fact that they appear basically at the same place and at the same time than the other settlers a bit easter, we have to accept the idea that several different populations came from the west: As one crossed the high mountains of the west and went on to the other side of the huge harsh Tarim desert, they ended up at the exact same TIME at the same PLACE, in an arid forlorn region of Eurasia, where some migrants from south Siberia (and originally from the west) had just arrived... Hard to believe (especially since the Xiaohe said to come from soutyh Siberia are wester in Tarim thyan the other settlers).
    So yes, I do believe the genetic results of the Xiaohe are representative and thus point to some Afanasevo population offshoot as the source of these first settlers of the east Tarim/North-west Gansu.

    Actually the simple fact that the earliest Tarim settlers are apparently found in the eastern Tarim and north-west Gansu already kind of favors an arrival from the north rather than directly from the west (high mountains, huge arid desert).

    As for the Tarim R1a1as I assume both Afanasevo (and thus originally coming from the west: archaeology, genetics, morphology imposing this view) that were apparently almost exclusively R1a1a given the results of several studies and the Sakas to be the source of these R1a1a. 2 different waves separated by a long time.

    ReplyDelete
  78. wagg,

    I'm well aware of what you have read and, as I think I told you some time ago, what you have read is both outdated and heavily burdened with deeply partisan interpretation. We now know that Afanasevo is older than Yamnaya, that they were sheep herders, not cow herds or horsemen, and that they appear in southern Siberia before the advent of nomadic pastoralism on the Eurasian steppe -- Afanasevo were not nomads but vertically-transhumant shepherds, as I have said.

    This sort of thing happens. New data comes to light and good scientists revise or discard their model as needed. Bad scientists deny the data's relevance or just go in search of new data to support the same old narrative. Anthony was invited to comment on Frachetti's paper and his objections were far from convincing.

    "The only problem with that is that the population was clearly originating from the west...west Eurasian haplogroups (both male and female)..."

    Not in the Tarim basin, obviously. Y-DNA of the oldest mummies just as readily points to South Asia, same as the wheat. The mt-DNA was typically Siberian. The data is inconclusive, at best, and not "clear" at all, unless one is already invested in Kurganism.

    Even if the points you raise were relevant, you would still have to explain why the Afanasevo were older than their supposed parent culture and why they wandered across the Eurasian steppe, before there were nomads wandering the steppe, abandoning their native subsistence strategy along the way, and upon their arrival adopted a new and alien subsistence strategy from southern Central Asians already present in the area. It's a narrative that, without very strong corroborative evidence, simply defies belief.

    And we haven't begun to address the very clear and very persistent cultural ties of the Tarim basin to the oases of Central Asia, ties that persisted for millennia.

    "...non-negligible presence of light pigmentation in hair and eyes..."

    Which is inconsistent with a Central-Asian origin if, and only if, there was no light pigmentation in hair and eyes in Central Asia at that time. Is that what you're claiming and, if so, what is your evidence?

    Grey:

    "I'm not saying it's true but you seem to be saying it's not possible when it obviously is."

    Possible and probable are two very different things. The oases were relatively densely populated and separated by desert that, on average, took about two days by camel to traverse. I never said that it was impossible. As I recall, I said that it is difficult to imagine.

    ReplyDelete
  79. @ Va_Highlander

    "what you have read is both outdated and heavily burdened with deeply partisan interpretation."

    Amusing.


    "The mt-DNA was typically Siberian"

    Except for the few west Eurasian mtDNA lineages, one of which (a mtDNA H) was found by the Chinese team to have several modern matches exclusively in Europe and in fact, up to north-western Europe.

    Anyway, the Asian south Siberian mtDNA is a good indication of the origin of these first settlers in itself (mtDNA C4 is till found mainly in the Altai nowadays IIRC, hence the conclusion of this Chinese study about the origin of this early bronze age population).


    Whatever.

    ReplyDelete
  80. @ Wagg;

    I agree with Va-Highlander. To re-iterate again, not only have yu too much faith in Y0DNA (which is merely 1 marker which is liable to large 'skewing') but your readily accepting that the R1a1 in the Tarim basin came from Pontic_Ural region rather than soutehr or southwestern Asia. Despite Keyser's STR studies of affinities to modern EE populations, her sampling of Asia was pretty negligible, and moreover, STRs are simply not that reliable, as we all know.

    They'd need to do further analyses of which specific cublcade of R1a1 the Tarmi basin mummies possesed - "European Z 280 or M458 or south Asian Z 93. Only then are we on a more secure footing

    However, even the that deosn't mean that R1a1 was not part of a largery mix of diverse Y Hgs which merely survived by historical fluke - ie the ever-present genetic drift which has most powerful effects on Y chromosome haplogroups.



    ReplyDelete
  81. wagg:

    "Except for the few west Eurasian mtDNA lineages, one of which (a mtDNA H) was found by the Chinese team to have several modern matches exclusively in Europe and in fact, up to north-western Europe."

    So what? You set out to prove that Afanasevo originated across the Eurasian steppe and now hang the claim on DNA samples from more than a thousand years later, drawn from a population that everyone agrees was mixed and from a time when nomadic pastoralists had wandered the steppe for some centuries.

    Off the top of my head, Seima-Turbino originated in the Altai and burial sites stretch from Mongolia to Finland. That provides at least one possible vector, one which, unlike Anthony's lost tribe, is unambiguously attested in the archaeological record.

    "Anyway, the Asian south Siberian mtDNA is a good indication of the origin of these first settlers in itself (mtDNA C4 is till found mainly in the Altai nowadays IIRC..."

    I agree. There seems little doubt that the mummy people derived from the Altai. The question before us was how did the sheep-herding culture of the Afanasevo arrive or arise there. The most plausible answer at this point is that it spread north-east from one or more Central-Asian colonies in Tajikistan. Whether it was carried there by colonists themselves or was adopted by local tribes of hunter-gatherers or some combination of the two seems immaterial. Y-DNA may provide a clue or it may not.

    Personally, I am far from convinced that the Afanasevo spoke some precursor of Tocharian and in fact it may well be a question that science cannot answer. Moreover, and as Dienekes has emphasized before me, the language is not attested until well into the first millennium CE. By that time the historic Silk Routes had flourished for some centuries and clearly Central-Asian cultural elements had been present in the Tarim basin for at least a couple of millennia. That by such a date the oases in which Tocarian was spoken had undergone multiple demic events, and been subject to multiple cultural influences, seems beyond question. If it's true and a language had survived more-or-less unchanged under such conditions over the course of 4,500 years, that would be rather extraordinary, I should think.

    ReplyDelete
  82. @ Dr Rob said

    "I agree with Va-Highlander. To re-iterate again, not only have yu too much faith in Y0DNA (which is merely 1 marker which is liable to large 'skewing') but your readily accepting that the R1a1 in the Tarim basin came from Pontic_Ural region rather than soutehr or southwestern Asia."

    This has already been answered with galore of evidences (from _large_ mtDNA evidences to dental characteristics (it does concern the Tarim people as well)) so there is no point in going further with this.


    "Despite Keyser's STR studies of affinities to modern EE populations, her sampling of Asia was pretty negligible, and moreover, STRs are simply not that reliable, as we all know."

    Yes, let's just ignore the typical west eurasian mtDNA lineages (w/ matches in Europe) and the other genetic elements (including concerning cattle or autosomal profiles of modern and ancient population of that region (ALT-BA in the graphs from Der Sarkissian et al, 2013), anthropomorphological data (morphology and skulls) and archeological link, i.e. material culture (Pontic region-> Afanasevo).
    Let's just shrugg it off.


    @ Va_Highlander

    [wagg: "Except for the few west Eurasian mtDNA lineages, one of which (a mtDNA H) was found by the Chinese team to have several modern matches exclusively in Europe and in fact, up to north-western Europe."]
    "So what? You set out to prove that Afanasevo originated across the Eurasian steppe and now hang the claim on DNA samples from more than a thousand years later, drawn from a population that everyone agrees was mixed and from a time when nomadic pastoralists had wandered the steppe for some centuries."


    I think anyone neutral enough has to accept that west Eurasian lineages in Tarim, coming from south Siberia (likely from the east of the Altai region given the occurence of the first Tarim settlers) have to be related to Afanasevo, especially around 2,150 BCE (approximate date for the first known settlers)).


    "Off the top of my head, Seima-Turbino originated in the Altai and burial sites stretch from Mongolia to Finland."

    Seima-Turbino is at best originating in 1,900 BC, and I fail to see how this is a blow to what I've previously said.


    "There seems little doubt that the mummy people derived from the Altai. The question before us was how did the sheep-herding culture of the Afanasevo arrive or arise there. The most plausible answer at this point is that it spread north-east from one or more Central-Asian colonies in Tajikistan."

    As far as I can see, archeology (material culture) and genetics discard this view.


    I don't think I need to say more given the amount of data I provided.

    --
    Erratum:
    "Scandinavian lask (salmon) and Tocharian A lask (fish)"

    Oops. It's laks not lask, sorry.

    ReplyDelete
  83. wagg:

    "I think anyone neutral enough has to accept that west Eurasian lineages in Tarim, coming from south Siberia (likely from the east of the Altai region given the occurence of the first Tarim settlers) have to be related to Afanaseo..."

    Ha! I should counter that anyone skeptical enough would consider all possible explanations for the presence of such lineages before accepting that their preferred narrative is in fact the most plausible. Given the fact that Afanasevo appears in the Altai no later than 3000 BCE, it is difficult to see your preferred narrative as even possible, let alone plausible.

    And I should further suggest more generally that, when substituting plausible narrative for a scientific model based on empirical observation, anyone insufficiently skeptical will inevitably be led astray.

    "Seima-Turbino is at best originating in 1,900 BC, and I fail to see how this is a blow to what I've previously said."

    It isn't, unless the samples you mentioned from northwest Europe predate Seima-Turbino. But as I say, it hardly matters, since by the time the mummy people arrived in the Tarim basin increasing aridity had led many formerly sedentary populations to adopt a life of nomadic pastoralism. Context matters, you know, even when concocting plausible narratives.

    "As far as I can see, archeology (material culture) and genetics discard this view."

    Given the outdated sources upon which you rely, this is hardly surprising. What surprises is that anyone neutral enough would cling to such outdated sources so tenaciously.

    ReplyDelete
  84. @wagg

    "As for the Tarim R1a1as I assume both Afanasevo (and thus originally coming from the west: archaeology, genetics, morphology imposing this view) that were apparently almost exclusively R1a1a given the results of several studies and the Sakas to be the source of these R1a1a. 2 different waves separated by a long time."

    The Tarim mummies did not derive from Afanasevo. The Western mtdna in those tarim mummies were the product of more recent migrations from Europe, circa 2k BC, carrying mt H and K but lacking U. The androvono are a good candidate. The western mtdna in Afansevo would have been the "older" European types, U and maybe H, but not K.

    R-m417 seems to have spread with the latter IE push related to the satem languages. R1b, on the other hand, peaks in the areas where IE migrants first settled outside of the PC steppe - Anatolia, Southern Urals, and the Altai region. R1b is also associated with the earliest IE break offs - Anatolian, Tocharian, and Italo-Celtic. So we see a linguistic and archaeological association of the earliest IE with r1b. Furthermore, ancient west Eurasians of Central Asia/Eastern Europe share closer mtdna relations the people of the Southern Urals and the Altai, than they do with most other modern central Asian populations.

    ReplyDelete
  85. I elaborate on that theory, herehttp://distantconnections.wordpress.com/25-2/

    Also, I hope people realize that the Tocharian language may not have ever been established in the Tarim basin.We found Tocharian manuscript s in the t. basin, but that's not much...

    ReplyDelete
  86. "It isn't, unless the samples you mentioned from northwest Europe predate Seima-Turbino."

    Looks like I got that backwards. It should have read, and with apologies for any confusion:

    "It isn't, unless the samples you mentioned from northwest Europe postdate Seima-Turbino.

    ReplyDelete
  87. @ Colin Welling:

    The Tarim mummies did not derive from Afanasevo. The Western mtdna in those tarim mummies were the product of more recent migrations from Europe, circa 2k BC, carrying mt H and K but lacking U. The androvono are a good candidate. "

    Gotta love the certitude. You were there? Hope you had your camera with you. I expect some good shot! I'd love to see how it actually was.

    You're probably aware that the Xiaohe from Chunxiang Li et al, 2010 points to south Siberia as the source from this population. South Siberian west Eurasian mtDNA lineages has to be mostly or totally from an Afanasevo substrate, hence these early Tarim settlers' haplogroups as well.

    Kayzer et al, 2009 (Bronze and Iron age south Siberian aDNA) was not missing mtDNA U BTW. There was U2e and U5a in the lot (it's quite possible this population also had some U1a as it is found nowadays in the Altai and it was found in Bronze/iron age Kazakhstan (we can assume this lineage originated from Southern Russia as it is still there today), it's a possibility - but we can't be sure right now). You can't decide there were no U just because the few samples of the Xiaohe hadn't any.

    Anyway Afanasevo and Andronovo lineages should have a lot in common, especially early.


    "The western mtdna in Afansevo would have been the "older" European types, U and maybe H, but not K."

    1/ K was among the south Siberian western female lineages from Kayzer et al, 2009. The samples from this study are roughly from 1800 BCE to 400 AD so some female lineages might have been newcomers as the Afanasevo culture vanished to become part of the Andronovo horizon around 1700 BCE, I guess.

    But...

    2/ You can't know for sure what was the exact history of all the K lineages. It's just too soon yet to lecture about the precise history of human lineages.


    "R-m417 seems to have spread with the latter IE push related to the satem languages"

    It isn't. There were R1a1a found in corded ware remains from 2600 BCE deep in modern Germany. Besides, there are Scandinavian R1a1a that can't be related with the Dark ages' Satem/ Slavic migrations.


    VA_Highlander: "Given the outdated sources upon which you rely, this is hardly surprising"

    Afanasevo's Yamnaya metal artefacts, axes, cultual objects and funerary customs can't magically transform into something of a different nature. And the genetic nature of this population fits with the material culture. 1+1=2.


    "that Afanasevo appears in the Altai no later than 3000 BCE"

    That's not the carbon dating date I've seen, and anyway material culture don't lie. It seems mostly Yamnaya derived and they were anyway culturally and technologically related.

    ReplyDelete
  88. Colin Welling:

    "The Tarim mummies did not derive from Afanasevo."

    If you had made this statement before I had discussed the matter with wagg, here, I'd have disagreed and felt confident in doing so. But now I suspect that, like so many elements of the Kurgan narrative, the claim may not bear close scrutiny.

    The connection between Afanasievo, in Siberia, and Xiaohe and Gumuguo, in the Taklamakan desert, is based upon the early dates associated with these sites, on similarities between the woven baskets found in the Taklamakan and ceramic forms to the north, and on the identification of the mummies as Caucasoid. This is not a strong case, obviously, and given the fact that the authorities making the claim believe the Kurgan narrative and need this connection to make the story plausible, I have serious doubts.

    "The androvono are a good candidate."

    From an archaeological standpoint, no, they are not.

    There are no horse remains associated with the early mummies, contrary to what one would expect were there a connection to Andronovo. What we have instead are the remains of Bactrian camels, obviously indicating a connection with the oases of southern Central Asia. The wheat, sheep, and woolen textiles, found at Gumuguo and Xiaohe likewise point to southern Central Asia and not to the Eurasian steppe.

    "Also, I hope people realize that the Tocharian language may not have ever been established in the Tarim basin.We found Tocharian manuscript s in the t. basin, but that's not much..."

    Since surviving texts include monastery correspondence and accounts, commercial documents, and caravan permits, there is no reason whatsoever to doubt that Tocharian was established in the Tarim basin.

    ReplyDelete
  89. VA_Highlander: "that Afanasevo appears in the Altai no later than 3000 BCE"

    I think I wasn't clear enough about this (I had misread), so I precise: the carbon datings of Afanasevo and the Yamnaya horizon are totally concordant.

    @ Colin Welling: about the bronze and iron age south Siberian aDNA's mtDNA U, I forgot there was also U4.

    ReplyDelete
  90. Colin Welling

    "The western mtdna in Afansevo would have been the "older" European types, U and maybe H, but not K."

    Why? As far as I know mtDNA K is attested in Europe two millennia before Afanasevo and it was probably not even the earliest.
    Afanasevo postdates the arrival of most of the modern European mtDNA Hg-s with ages.

    ReplyDelete
  91. I'll just address everyone at once.

    The western mtdna lineages in afansevo should be a subset of the contemporary populations from the PC Steppes, Russia, and Kazakhstan, since any recently migrated mtdna in the afanasevo people probably derived from those areas. As it stands, mtdna K has not been found in any of the above regions pre 3k BC! All tests for western mtdna lineages in those regions, pre 3k BC, came back as U or H. Actually, it mostly come back as U. So we can suspect that the western lineages in afanasevo were mostly U and H, but lacked K. The Tarim mummies, however, had K and lacked U. That's why I don't think those Tarim mummies derived from afanasevo.

    Some very different western elements seems to have come to central Asia around 2k BC, ie different from the earliest IE peoples. You can see the western mtdna discontinuity around 2k BC here http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6cGT0FXvA1w/UAWpYIb7LDI/AAAAAAAAALw/EUZczxwoc8E/s1600/mtDNAtimeline.png

    This discontinuity is associated with Androvono, which I believe was satem derived.

    I think there were two early thrusts of IE. One was from the PIE people of the PC steppes and the other was from central/ eastern europe, probably related to corded ware, and only partially derived from the PIE peoples. I think the former was largely r1b and mtdna u and h. I think the latter had was largely r1a and law had mtdna K.

    ReplyDelete
  92. Just a point. Some people are talking here about "Gedrosia and West Asian" as if these are two different components. West Asian component it self is a composite or ancestral to "Gedrosia and Caucasus" components of K12b.
    IN fact the Gedrosia component is the much more unchanged part of West Asian while Caucasus appears like West Asian+Caucasus with North Euro influence.


    Kurti, these are just different levels of resolution. The West_Asian component of the lower resolutions (lower K) splits into the Caucasus and the Gedrosia components at a higher resolution, i.e. with more components. Basically! Of course, as you point out, things are more complicated, as the K12b Caucasus component does contain parts of the K7b Southern and Atlantic_Baltic components as well, and the K12b Gedrosia component includes part of the South_Asian component. Moreover, the Basques are about 10% Gedrosia while having 0% of West_Asian, which demands for an explanation, which I have tried to give. But, the K7b West_Asian component almost exclusively consists of Caucasus and Gedrosia, of parts of them.

    ReplyDelete
  93. wagg:

    "That's not the carbon dating date I've seen, and anyway material culture don't lie. It seems mostly Yamnaya derived and they were anyway culturally and technologically related."

    You have not seen it because you rely exclusively on outdated and deeply partisan sources. While you are perfectly free to stick your fingers in your ears and sing like this, it's beginning to look a bit ridiculous.

    I agree that material culture does not lie but lies about its significance are easy to tell. When confirmation bias comes into play, and one has personal, professional, and economic motives for interpreting a material culture a certain way, those lies don't even have to be deliberate.

    When one lays out all the evidence, there are some similarities between Afanasievo and the Yamna culture of some centuries later and there are significant differences, too. The fact that the former were vertically-transhumant sheep herders, a subsistence strategy without parallel among the Yamna but with clear antecedents in southern Central Asia, should be significant to any but the most die-hard Kurganistas.

    It is also far from clear that the similarities are as significant as you and others seem to believe. Round-bottomed pots, for instance, first appear on the eastern Eurasian steppe in the sixth millennium BCE and are found over a wide geographic area. The circular enclosures of the Afanasievo may be related to the kurgan burials of the later Yamna people or they may not. How can anyone neutral enough argue that the similarities are more significant than the obvious differences?

    ReplyDelete
  94. I think BB must have picked up the R1b in CE. Typical western-central European is R1b-M412. Its close ancestors M269 and L23 are relatively frequent in West Asia and the Balkans, especially in Kosovo, Macedonia and Serbia, where the Vinca culture once flourished. There is also a striking peak of R1b-L23 in the Rhone Valley of Switzerland, i.e. in the middle of CE. On the other hand, in Iberia these ancestral variants are mostly absent. Another line of evidence is the strength of the West_Asian autosomal component, which at least initially must have accompanied the R1b expansion. This component is stronger in France and CE than in either Iberia or Britain.

    There were mainly two post LBK waves of Near Eastern immigrants in SE Europe. The first one associated with Dimini, Vinca and Lengyel. The second one with Baden, Ezero, Kostolac, Cotofeni and related cultures.
    Now, I would suggest that the first wave brought the Gedrosia component, the second wave was mostly Caucasus. It's similar in West_Asia itself: The Gedrosia component dominates the eastern periphery of West Asia, as if it were a relic of an earlier expansion. The Gedrosia and early R1b spread with the Lengyel influence in CE. In contemporary SE Europe, the Caucasus component is much stronger than Gedrosia. So I think this (the West_Asian part of the Caucasus component) arrived with the second wave, with Baden etc.

    The BB expansion from Iberia brought along some cultural as well as some genetic influence. But apparently not the typical brachycephalic skull type commonly associated with BB. Maybe this was picked up together with R1b/Gedrosia in CE.

    The West_Asian component in Iberia is strongest in the South, where also the production of copper arrived first. In southern Iberia, there is also more of haplogroup J2 than in the North, West and East. Initially the Iberian BB people may well have spread some West_Asian admixture and J2, but generally, the West_Asian admixture in Iberia is low. It didn't spread from there to northwestern Europe.

    I think, as others have already suggested here, we should not disregard other vectors of cultural influence that spread within the BB context. Granted, there was the main influence stemming from Iberia, but as several authors pointed out, there were also influences from other directions, from northeast and southeast...

    As for the language and the possibility of the Celticity of BB, I guess this depends a lot on ones general ideas about the PIE homeland and early spread. In any case, apparently there were later, middle Bronze Age upheavals in western Europe, testified by the revival of agriculture in Britain and the main admixture with the North_European component in Iberia.

    ReplyDelete
  95. VA_Highlander:
    "When confirmation bias comes into play, and one has personal, professional, and economic motives for interpreting a material culture a certain way"

    Strange that biases could be only in one direction and that ALL the concerned scientists would be guilty of it.

    These scientists would ALL be driven and/or blinded by nationalism... And this coming from an Indian man (As iI recall from comments from Maju's blog) who (like apparently a majority of his fellow countrymen) seems to exude a fiery nationalism everytime a theory about IE and PIE doesn't point towards India and south Asia...
    Everyone is wrong but you. Fine.

    Everytime I pointed you to well-rooted data in diverse scientific branches by diverse scientists, your main answer was: "But they're biased!". Cogent counter-argumentation...
    Oh, they're biased? What do you know about it? What about you?

    Pontic-related culture and customs? Artefacts Similar to Pontic ones? Ancient and modern north European autosomal data in and around this region? Light pigmentation among them? west Eurasian Haplogroups) with modern matches in Europe? ? Europoid morphology? West eurasian cattle genetics? European dental characteristics in this region (including the Tarim basin)?
    Everything shrugged off.

    They ALL bent or invented their results to fit their nationalistic agenda? Ludicrous.

    No, I don't think there is a worldwide plot by western and Chinese scientists to deny India and/or south Asia of its rightful place at the center of everything.

    Someone who's trying to sell me that a people, that mainstream multi-domain data situate the origin in Russia (or at least "west"), is actually coming from south Asia against all evidences, will not lecture me on biases and jingoism.


    "The fact that the former were vertically-transhumant sheep herders, a subsistence strategy without parallel among the Yamna but with clear antecedents in southern Central Asia"

    Let's see.
    Proto-Europoid with sheep, cattle and horses on one side... and Proto-Europoid with sheep, cattle and horses on another side. Hmm... I think it works. Especially with similar material culture and an obvious genetic link.
    Pontic region: not exactly many mountains. Altai-sayan: high mountains.
    See? I've got an explanation for this Afanasevo way of life.


    "You have not seen it because you rely exclusively on outdated and deeply partisan sources"

    There was another post where I said: "the carbon datings of Afanasevo and the Yamnaya horizon are totally concordant"

    These "outdated and deeply partisan sources" are from recent books from respected authors writing about a mainstream theory (for a reason), something your deeply biased and partisan mind can't accept. And that's fine with me.


    I think we're through now, otherwise this could last forever.

    ReplyDelete
  96. wagg:

    "These scientists would ALL be driven and/or blinded by nationalism... And this coming from an Indian man (As iI recall from comments from Maju's blog) who (like apparently a majority of his fellow countrymen) seems to exude a fiery nationalism everytime a theory about IE and PIE doesn't point towards India and south Asia..."

    So my ethnicity is important to you and relevant to this discussion, is it? Well, at least I understand your motivation and looks like it was something nasty all along.

    I was born in the US, in the highlands of the Commonwealth of Virginia -- abbreviated "Va" and hence my screen name. My father is one quarter Irish and the rest an exclusively European mix fairly typical for this region. My mother's forbears were primarily English, aside from the odd German here and there, and most of her ancestral lines were established on this continent about four-and-a-half-centuries ago. I provide you with such detail in the sincere hope that your regard for European Americans is even lower than your regard for Hindus and we shall all enjoy seeing you make an even bigger, bigoted fool of yourself than you have already.

    So much for your genetic fallacy. The rest of your spittle-flaked rant is, I think, a most amusing combination of a straw man, projection, an appeal to authority, and yet another round of you sticking your fingers in your ears and singing the same tune even more loudly than last time. I see now why you're a regular at Maju's propaganda mill. You and he have so much in common, though sadly none of it good.

    ReplyDelete
  97. "My mother's forbears were primarily English, aside from the odd German here and there, and most of her ancestral lines were established on this continent about four-and-a-half-centuries ago."

    Better make that three-and-a-half centuries, and with apologies.

    ReplyDelete
  98. @VA_Hgihlander:

    "So my ethnicity is important to you and relevant to this discussion, is it? Well, at least I understand your motivation and looks like it was something nasty all along. "

    Enough with your excuses. You've been using foul play all along...
    You swept a huge pile of evidences under the carpet with a simple childish "They're all biased!".
    And this time you're at it again: All the big stack of data shrugged off with a mere "you racist bigot!". How simple.
    You clearly have no lessons to give to anyone.


    "So my ethnicity is important to you and relevant to this discussion, is it?"

    It would have had the merit of explaining your _otherwise difficult to explain_ stubborness to not take into account the multi-domain data, at least.
    You certainly spent a lot of time claiming ethnicity was important in the value of the work of the quite numerous and diverse scientists I mentionned, as apparently your main problem with them was their nationality (their nationalistic "biases")...

    I'm pretty sure I've read at Maju's blog that you were Indian, but maybe I misunderstood something. Whatever.


    "we shall all enjoy seeing you make an even bigger, bigoted fool of yourself than you have already"

    If this is so, I'm afraid we both share this image, given your irrational (and unexplainable: no, "they're ALL biased! Period!" is not enough) stubborness in the face of diverse multi-domain scientific data.


    Now I am really through with this parody of a "discussion".

    ReplyDelete
  99. wagg:

    "I'm pretty sure I've read at Maju's blog that you were Indian, but maybe I misunderstood something."

    At this point, it seems rather obvious that what you read and demonstrable reality are two very different things. I'd also suggest that, if you believe anything Maju claims, you are an even bigger fool than I thought.

    "You swept a huge pile of evidences under the carpet with a simple childish 'They're all biased!'."

    This is another straw man. Apparently, you just can't help yourself.

    "And this time you're at it again: All the big stack of data shrugged off with a mere 'you racist bigot!'."

    And this is obviously just more projection. I actually hesitated to call you a "racist bigot" but I see that was probably an error on my part.

    "Now I am really through with this parody of a 'discussion'."

    Good for you!

    ReplyDelete
  100. As for the theory that R1b (M269 and M73) is from the PC steppe and PIE, I think it's possible, but the evidence so far is really not that convincing.

    The plain facts from ancient DNA so far showed only R1a from the Corded Ware in Germany, over the bronze age Andronovo culture in Siberia to the Tarim basin in western China.

    But let's look at the indirect evidence.

    The old mt-DNA of the Bashkirs and near the Altai may be fact, but from mt-DNA you cannot conclude to the y-DNA, as these are seperately transmitted. The male lines may have had a different origin than the female lines. And after all, these people even don't speak IE, so there must have been admixture with incoming Turkic and other groups, which may well have involved more males than females.

    The different distribution of R1a vs. R1b in China, i.e. that the former seems to have a more diffuse distribution, while the latter seems concentrated along the steppe border, may be a consequence of R1a having arrived first, and the later R1b was halted near the agricultural border.

    I can't say much about mt-DNA U2e in Scythians, but the apparently West Asian U5a may have come from West Asia into the Scythians?

    Now for the claim that R1b, at least M269 and M73, seems associated with the earliest branchings of IE, I'd say the evidence is inconclusive. It is associated with Celtic, to a lesser extent with Italic too, but the association with Tocharian is uncertain, and in West Asia it's strongest in the places where IE arrived late: northern and northeastern Anatolia, Armenia and the Caspian coast in northern Iran. In these places we had the Kaskians and the Hurrians and other probably non-IE peoples as the Gelae, Cadusii, Amardi and Tapuri.

    The main problem however, is the lack of archaeological evidence for a far reaching, cataclysmic Kurgan invasion in Europe. The Corded Ware does have similarities with Yamnaya, but it's a different culture, mostly locally developped. And while there was a Yamnaya invasion in the Balkans, even Mallory admits that the steppe influence west of the Tisza remains elusive. Culturally, but also physically one must add. And even having some steppe people in the Carpathian basin, the problem remains that R1b was already present in the eastern group of the Bell Beakers, and deducing this eastern Bell Beaker group from steppe people in the Carpathian basin is not at all trivial, since, as Heyd wrote, Bell Beaker arrived late in Hungary and it wasn't much recepted at first, only late there arose the syncretistic Pitvaros/Maros culture. So, rather than having come from the Carpathian basin and the Vucedol culture, it was the other way round, Bell Beaker migrated there. And as Desideri proved, the Hungarian Bell Beaker people were clearly intruders from somewhere else, they did not come from Hungary itself.

    Now, the Baden culture had strong contacts with eastern Anatolia, which even make some immigration likely. It's not unrealistic to assume that this involved R1b males. And some of this may have spread to central Germany to end up in Bell Beaker males there.

    ReplyDelete
  101. I think there's an absurd mythology with the people basco: his Y-haplogroup R1b is 85% Indo-European branch of the Southern France and Iberia (the most recent inhabitants of the area), and as for the mother, has no significant feature.

    ReplyDelete
  102. Stop mythology of the Basque people: are quite normal in their haplogroups and genetic, and are the most recent inhabitants of Europe. The only weird thing is basque people in your language: one koine because it was an area with Celtic , Iberian and others influences. Their language is a recent mixture, with influences from latin too.

    ReplyDelete

Stay on topic. Be polite. Use facts and arguments. Be Brief. Do not post back to back comments in the same thread, unless you absolutely have to. Don't quote excessively. Google before you ask.