May 31, 2013

Genetic structure and different population strata in Italy

From the paper, on the use of evolutionary Y-chromosome mutation rate:
The use of STR variation for dating Y-chromosome lineages or population splits, is a controversial issue, due to the effect that both mutation rates and STR choice has on the temporal scale of age estimates. Following the most recent studies our estimates are based on those STRs that show the highest duration of linearity [49] and by using locus-specific mutation rates (Ballantyne et al. 2010). This is one of the reasons that led us to exclude ‘evolutionary’ mutation rates (see Methods for details). In addition, we removed ‘outlier’ haplotypes (see Methods S1), since their presence could inflate significantly the ages of haplogroups and DAPC clusters. However, these results have to be taken with great caution, keeping in mind that ‘evolutionary’ rates (applied to the same data) would yield time estimates around three times greater. Nonetheless, we observe that two independent methods applied to our data – BATWING and SD-based estimates – yield consistent results. In fact, in contrast to mtDNA age estimates, almost all Y-chromosome estimates fall between late Neolithic and the Bronze Age. 
On population structure in Italy:
Our results show that the Y-chromosomal genetic diversity of Italy is not clinal but structured in three geographical areas: North-Western Italy (NWI), South-Eastern Italy (SEI) and Sardinia (SAR). The outlier position of SAR described in previous studies [21], [58]–[61] is mainly due to the high frequency of I-M26 haplogroup, that in turn is almost completely absent in continental Italy. In addition, it is noteworthy the scanty haplotype affinities with other European I-M26 lineages as DAPC results seem to indicate (Figure S7, Table S6). However, the structure observed for paternal lineages in continental Italy and Sicily was not characterised by North-South gradients as previously described: our results show a NWI-SEI clustering (Figure 1a), suggesting a shared genetic background between Southern Italy and the Adriatic coast from one side, and between Northern Italy and Tuscany from the other side. Actually, the most accurate description of the discontinuity between NWI and SEI is that of a “belt”, that is a restricted portion of territory in which haplogroup frequencies tend to change more rapidly than in the rest of the Italian peninsula. This model was suggested by the presence of a few populations from North-Eastern and Central Italy (Treviso, Foligno/PG) that reveal an intermediate position between the two main groups. 
The figure on the left shows the first two principal components based on Y-haplogroup frequencies, with positive/negative values coded as black/white and size of the square indicating the PC value.

On mtDNA:
Age estimates for mtDNA haplogroups - even if past demographic events affecting error rates cannot be excluded - point almost unanimously to pre-Neolithic times, ranging approximately from ~13,000 (H1*) to ~31,600 (HV) YBP. Although such estimates might reflect the haplogroups pre-existent diversity previous to their establishment in Italy (which could be the case of HV, that includes two DAPC clusters with different geographical distributions and whose ages largely post-date that of the whole haplogroup; Table 2), this does not seem to hold for most of the mtDNA haplogroups analysed. Indeed, most of our mtDNA time estimates are consistent with the hypothesis of the existence of a Glacial Refugium in the Italian Peninsula and its probable role in subsequent post-glacial expansions.
 I am not sure the data can be interpreted as supportive of the refugium hypothesis; they are consistent with it, but might also be consistent with the "pre-existent diversity" during colonization, as the authors themselves mention. I often give the example of Paleolithic TMRCAs for European mtDNA in the Americas, even though the actual arrival of that mtDNA was almost certainly post-1492. In any case, ancient DNA studies will eventually sort out who was where when.

Finally, here's the table of Y-haplogroup frequencies (below) in different regions (defined above):




PLoS ONE 8(5): e65441. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0065441

Uniparental Markers in Italy Reveal a Sex-Biased Genetic Structure and Different Historical Strata

Alessio Boattini, Begoña Martinez-Cruz et al.

Located in the center of the Mediterranean landscape and with an extensive coastal line, the territory of what is today Italy has played an important role in the history of human settlements and movements of Southern Europe and the Mediterranean Basin. Populated since Paleolithic times, the complexity of human movements during the Neolithic, the Metal Ages and the most recent history of the two last millennia (involving the overlapping of different cultural and demic strata) has shaped the pattern of the modern Italian genetic structure. With the aim of disentangling this pattern and understanding which processes more importantly shaped the distribution of diversity, we have analyzed the uniparentally-inherited markers in ~900 individuals from an extensive sampling across the Italian peninsula, Sardinia and Sicily. Spatial PCAs and DAPCs revealed a sex-biased pattern indicating different demographic histories for males and females. Besides the genetic outlier position of Sardinians, a North West–South East Y-chromosome structure is found in continental Italy. Such structure is in agreement with recent archeological syntheses indicating two independent and parallel processes of Neolithisation. In addition, date estimates pinpoint the importance of the cultural and demographic events during the late Neolithic and Metal Ages. On the other hand, mitochondrial diversity is distributed more homogeneously in agreement with older population events that might be related to the presence of an Italian Refugium during the last glacial period in Europe.

Link

30 comments:

apostateimpressions said...

Can we detect the Germanic contribution to the Italian population structure, Lombards, Goths, Ostrogoths?

I was wondering about France recently. Has there been any study of population structure in France? In particular can we detect west Germanic Frankish and north Germanic Norman structure?

DocG said...

I would think that categorization by topography as well as geography would also be of interest, as many of the most traditional populations worldwide are known to have retreated into refuge areas, such as dense forests and, especially, mountainous areas, as well as islands (witness the distinctiveness of Sardinia).

terryt said...

"Our results show that the Y-chromosomal genetic diversity of Italy is not clinal"

But then the authors go on to say:

"Actually, the most accurate description of the discontinuity between NWI and SEI is that of a 'belt', that is a restricted portion of territory in which haplogroup frequencies tend to change more rapidly than in the rest of the Italian peninsula".

Hang on. Isn't that simply a steep cline? And surely it is splitting hairs to draw a distinction between a 'North-South gradients as previously described' and 'a NWI-SEI clustering'.

"Spatial PCAs and DAPCs revealed a sex-biased pattern indicating different demographic histories for males and females".

That is hardly surprising. And didn't we already know that mt-DNA is much older than Y-DNA? It si only those who believe in some sort of Garden of Eden theory that have trouble getting their heads around it. It is interesting to see Y-DNA 'F' listed.

mooreisbetter said...

Thank you so much for posting this. Your continual sharing of great papers like this is the reason why this blog is the best genetics/anthro blog in the world!

A wealth of data here.

A few initital reactions:

(1) The conclusion, that men of the G haplogroup are MESOLITHIC in Europe is something that I have been thinking about (and posting here) for a long time.

In other words, G is concentrated now in the mountains of the Caucasus. And sporadically in the rest of Europe.

Previous orthodoxy was that G's distribution was clinal, radiating from the Caucasus through the Middle East, to Europe, consistent with a Neolithic spread of the "farming" haplogroups.

With recent studies showing:

-G is old
-G is widely distributed and concentrated in refuge/isolated areas from the Alps to the Pyrenees to islands like Sardinia
-G in so many ancient samples

I concluded that G was the best candidate for the "original" YC Hg in Europe.

It would make sense that subsequent waves - wave after wave - pushed the marker into the most remote areas, where it survived.

This paper seems to conclude that too. Espcially with the age and the close relationship with the G men in remote parts of Germany and remote parts of Italy.

(2) They did a great job on (someone, finally) distinguishing between Iberian M26 and Sardinian M26 and Mainland Italian M26. Again, that was predicted here: that they would end up being vastly different.

(3) The two critiques I would have is that the paper is not written in a plain/communicative style, even by the standards of academia. And 886 samples, sadly enough, for a region like Italy, just isn't enough. They need more from the way isolated regions, like the mountains of South Central Italy.

Dr Rob said...

" I am not sure the data can be interpreted as supportive of the refugium hypothesis; "

From the evidence of actual setlement - the only places we can thus far be sure of refugical settlements are in North Pontic and Franco-Cantabria.

The supposed balkan and Italian, or perhaps a common Adriatic refugium, are simply lacking in **hard** evidence, although, they could be "under the sea" .

GailT said...

They found mtDNA U5 at 5.43% in the Italian populations, which is very similar to the 5.8% U5 found in Asturians and 5.9% U5 found in Basques (after excluding U5b1f from the Basques, which is 12% of the total Basque population and probably represents drift or a founder effect).

I surprised to see such a uniform percent of U5 across the region. We would need the control regions test results to see if the diversity of U5 is similar in Italians as in Asturians and Basques. They provided this for y-DNA in Table S2, but I don't see the mtDNA haplotypes.

eurologist said...

However, the structure observed for paternal lineages in continental Italy and Sicily was not characterised by North-South gradients as previously described: our results show a NWI-SEI clustering (Figure 1a), suggesting a shared genetic background between Southern Italy and the Adriatic coast from one side, and between Northern Italy and Tuscany from the other side.

Not sure anyone really expected anything different. N/S has been loosely used, in this context. Italy, geographically, is a thin thing where such differences amount to almost nothing of importance.

Actually, the most accurate description of the discontinuity between NWI and SEI is that of a “belt”

This is a more important conclusion, and jives with other recent data that Italy has maintained more highly-localized populations than many other regions in Europe (except, perhaps, the Caucasus).

The conclusion, that men of the G haplogroup are MESOLITHIC in Europe is something that I have been thinking about (and posting here) for a long time.

Definitely for the Balkans. I have written before that much of the G-dominance of the European Neolithic could be based on that (and following common river routes). Not sure about other areas of Europe, which likely hosted "I" and others.

Slumbery said...

mooreisbetter

"I concluded that G was the best candidate for the "original" YC Hg in Europe."


Which G? The table shows that virtually all of the G is G2a. The idea of G or G2a being the "original" European Y Hg is incompatible with other recent research on G itself. It is more likely that it is first wave Neolithic.

Also from the article: "almost all Y-chromosome estimates fall between late Neolithic and the Bronze Age"
If this includes G, then it is far too young to be Mesolithic European.

Plus I am not aware of any Mesolithic Hunter-Gatherer Y Hg G result. All the numerous G-s you mention are from Neolithic samples.

------------
I am a bit surprised, because this population structure seems to be older than Roman times and despite that it survived the last two millennia in a very characteristic form.

Joshua Lipson said...

Interesting find of 6% E-M123 in Sardinia. The only comparable rates in Europe, I think, are in odd northern Iberian pockets (smaller southern Italian samples, too).

Zoltán Remek said...

In this paper ESHG 2013 abstract write that Kazakh tribe of Argyn has G1A - P20 (71%) haplogroup.

Simon_W said...

In contrast to others here I don't find the discovery of a NW-SE differentiation trivial and uninteresting, because the SE group extends along the Adriatic coast far to the north and is even found in the northeast. Surely that's something quite different than a simple north-south contrast.

From the y-chr. studies on Ravenna and Rimini I know that these coastal places are probably also on the border belt between NW and SE.

Also interesting to see how Tuscany constantly groups with the north, or rather NW. This was already indicated by the autosomal clustering done by Dienekes. And by the recent study on Etruscan mt-DNA, which turned out to be similar to central Europe.

It's really striking, when we compare the structuring revealed by the present study with the map of the ancient peoples of Italy:

http://img707.imageshack.us/img707/182/ancientethnicities.png

The Italic, IE tribes of Italy, along with the Veneti and the Iapyges, and the Greeks of course, are virtually identical with the SE group, while the NW group includes non-IE peoples such as the Raeti and the Etruscans, plus the Ligurians.

This is something that often isn't appreciated enough: The Italic languages were in fact rather in the south / southeast of Italy, while the north wasn't all that Indoeuropean.

And this is quite the opposite of what we would expect if the Etruscans originated in Anatolia, as often was proposed and the Italics in central Europe... Of course, there's still room for ethnogenesis and language imposing by elite dominance, but wouldn't it be an irony of history if the central European Italics ended up being genetically more southeastern than the Anatolian Etruscans? There's also the evicence of the Protovillanova culture, which had clear ties with eastern central Europe, and whose effect yet was most lasting in the north and in the region which became known as Etruria...

Some further observations:
Did you see, E-M81 and J1 both peak in Bologna (at least in this study), together making up 10,3% of the Bolognese population. What's this?? The legacy of migration and slavery in Roman times? Or remnants of the Carthaginian troops which were allied with the north Italian Gauls?

Also striking the high incidence of R1b-L21 in Bologna! I thought this was a British haplogroup. Did the Boii have British allies among them?

Finally, @ Joshua Lipson, E-M123 was also found in Rimini at 4,1%.

mooreisbetter said...

Did you guys actually read the paper?

I mean, one might argue that its precise conclusion is the same as my hypothesis:

"It is worth noting the older age estimate obtained for Y-haplogroup G2-P15 (15,020 YBP) that, coupled with its high frequency (11.09%), makes it the most probable candidate for a continuity with Italian Mesolithic populations..."

Note too the reasoning, which they give as very old distribution throughout Italy, is the same logic I apply, when I note that G-P15 is also distributed quite evenly in other remote European locales (from the Bavarian Alps to the Pyrenees).

"). The most frequent G2-P15 cluster (12,643 YBP, Table 2), besides being evenly diffused in NWI and SEI, it encompasses almost all Sardinian G2-P15 individuals (Figure 2, Table 1). These facts, together with the higher degree of isolation of Sardinia to Neolithic and Post-Neolithic migration processes, support the antiquity of this haplogroup in Italy."

There is just NO reason why G-P15 would end up evenly distributed in modern refugia locations (Pyrenees, Alps, Appennines, Caucasus), unless it was very ancient. That wouldn't comport with farming.

So that answers your first question, whether it's in the paper.

The second question was "what do the ancient samples show?" Well the answer is that ancient Y-DNA samples are still rare, since the technology to get them is very new. However, I would point out that four out of six, of the oldest samples found in Europe, are G2a.

http://www.buildinghistory.org/distantpast/ancientdna.shtml

Grant it, these samples are estimated at between 6000 and 5000 BC, which is the early Neolithic in Europe. But the samples are from all around Europe, so unless G2a men rode a very fast magic carpet in their invasion, the samples would also be quite consistent with a Mesolithic origin.

In fact, the simple fact that the oldest extant YC Hg in 4/6 of the samples we have is G2a also lends credibility to my theory.

eurologist said...

I am a bit surprised, because this population structure seems to be older than Roman times and despite that it survived the last two millennia in a very characteristic form.

Slumbery,

If you look at the various languages and dialects spoken in Italy today (partially derived from various Romance but also non-Italic substrates):
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/ae/Linguistic_map_of_Italy.png
and the fragmented history of Italy, in conjunction with strong local social isolation, this should not come as a surprise. Other genetic studies of Italy have shown strong persistence of highly localized populations.

Simon_W said...

Interestingly R1b-U152, thought by some to be THE Italo-Celtic haplogroup, peaks in Tuscany! It's a little more common there than in the northwest, and quite a bit more common than in the northeast and centre.

On the other hand, the Anatolian J2a in Tuscany is only 6,5%. Enough for elite dominance, but it's strinking that nowhere in Italy it is less common, except for Bologna, where it doesn't exist. And Bologna once used to be Etruscan too...

According to Thucydides, the Etruscans were Pelasgians, i.e. Pre-Greeks. But the most likely pre-Greek E-V13 amounts to 4,9% in Tuscany, only Sardinia has less...

And no, I don't believe the Romans exterminated the Etruscan male populace in order to replace it with north Italians.

Slumbery said...

mooreisbetter

I admit, I had not read the source paper. Now I have and still disagree.

The clustering time can be this old because of pre-existing variety of the farmers. Nevertheless, also a possible reason that it was present in a refugium here, so I would say this date is neutral to the question.

What is problematic however that the there are regions where G is very low, sometimes virtually zero. A good part of Scandinavia and the Baltic region. These are precisely the regions were people have the highest HG ancestry. If I look at the modern distribution of G, I have the impression that it made as far as the Anatolian farmers. This would be rather strange from a Mezolithic refugium DNA marker.

Also Sardinia is not a good place to look for a Mezolithic remnant population. The autosomal markers show strong Middle Eastern connections here.

Dr Rob said...

"In contrast to others here I don't find the discovery of a NW-SE differentiation trivial and uninteresting, because the SE group extends along the Adriatic coast far to the north and is even found in the northeast. Surely that's something quite different than a simple north-south contrast."

Good pick up, Simon

eurologist said...

What is problematic however that the there are regions where G is very low, sometimes virtually zero. A good part of Scandinavia and the Baltic region. These are precisely the regions were people have the highest HG ancestry.

Slumbery,

Not so strange if post-LGM Mediterraneans and N/NE Europeans in the end were very different people (as today's appearance suggests). Perhaps, N and NE Mesolithic Europe eventually was dominated by more Eastern refugia, Magdalanean connections notwithstanding. Ancient mtDNA seems to support this (roughly speaking, H in the S only, and particular U's in the N/NE, only).

I am of the opinion that the pre-Neolithic Balkan was high in G, so I have no problem with the idea that this extended at least towards Italy (if not further).

Simon_W,

Good comment - see also:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d8/Iron_Age_Italy.png

which includes the IE Venetic (IMO closer to the Germanic/Celtic/Italic split than Italic languages). The most straightforward explanation is that the IE folks (who were more heavily invested in cattle than the previous Italian agriculturalists) entered via the Austrian/Slovenian highlands just after the split from Germanic, while similar folks moved westward at the northern foot of the Alps (eventually resulting in proto-Celtic languages perhaps somewhere first in the Alsace to W Alps region).

Early IE regions II, V, and VI (and, partially, VII) are high in G2a, J2a, and several R1b subclades. Not unexpected from a mixture of mesolithic, Cardium, late Balkan LBK derived, and yet later Balkan and IE migrants. Perhaps someone who is more familiar with the R1b subclades can illuminate why M269* is particularly high (Balkan, again?).

Slumbery said...

eurologist

A possible scenario, but some explanation should be done. If we should name just one Y Hg that surely was here in the Mesolithic, it would be I. And I is present in the whole Scandinavia-Baltic region. How come it behaves so differently than G?

At the end I do not know of course. There are a lot of plot-holes in the story and you just made me more uncertain. :)

Simon_W said...

Eurologist,

To me it looks as though the Italic tribes had southeastern European connections and the Etruscans more northern, central European ones, both archeologically and genetically. Which way the Italics had taken isn't quite clear, but I think they may well have come directly across the Adriatic Sea, and in any case earlier than at the final bronze age. Massimo Pallottino has expressed similar views.

This model is compatible with several theories regarding the PIE homeland. It's just not so consistent with a central European homeland, of course.

The ancestors of the proto-Celts then must have followed the Danube to central Europe.

M269* is quite a basal marker. I guess it's ultimately from the West Asian highland region. There was a study recently suggesting it may have spread from the Iranian plateau, judging from its variance. But it's also relatively frequent and ubiquitous in the Balkans.

R1b-U152 on the other hand has the highest variance in Germany and Slovakia, i.e. central Europe. Even though it's most frequent in France, Switzerland and Italy.

Simon_W said...

Addendum: But in this study M269 apparently isn't really M269*, but rather M269(xP311). Thus here M269 also includes L23* and M412*, and the latter marker is mostly western + central European.

sarbon said...

Some comments on the numbers of G2a-P15 in the study and on what some have written here.
1. The proportion of the G2a subgroup to the total sample population in this study, is I think the highest proportion found in any country in Western Europe.
2. It is the second highest of any subgroup in this study.
3. The dominant G group found in Europe (perhaps 80% of G samples) is G2a1c2a1 and is thought to have entered into the Europe in the time of the Roman Empire [or not long after].
It has very different marker values to the samples of G2a1b which the Oetzi [Iceman] is one and who were obviously in the region at a very much earlier time than the ancestors of the majority of Western Europe.
Unfortunately the study doesn’t seem to have broken the hg G samples down further and so the opportunity hasn’t been taken to see whether they were very early arrivals into Italy, migrants from the Middle East into the Empire or part of the Barbarians from the Caucasus.

There Sampling Method
If I’ve understood it correctly, the sampling method was designed to give a geographical spread of samples, and not a random sample of the total population, thus to take an extreme example, Rome might generate the same number of samples as a rural region in the south.
Also the study only looked at birthplace of grandparents, which means that it would often not even take account of the effects of WW2 on a family’s historical place of origin.

Simon_W said...

Note how Foligno, which is in the very core area of the ancient Umbri, is already half way between NW and SE. And the Umbri were just the northernmost Italic tribe. On the other hand Grosseto and Siena, in the core area of the Etruscans, are clearly NW.

By the way, according to Gimbutas, the Protovillanovan culture had particularly similarities with the Urnfield/early Hallstatt groups of Bavaria and Upper Austria. This is perfectly in line with an origin of R1b-U152 between Germany and Slovakia. Gimbutas thought that these were the Italics. But in light of recent genetic evidence I would rather think that they were Etruscan.

And after all, the Raeti, linguistic relatives of the Etruscans, were living nearby, in immediate proximity: in Trentino-Südtirol, northern Tyrol, southern Bavaria (Raetic inscriptions have been found near Chiemsee!), Slovenia and possibly eastern Switzerland.

But what about Lemnian, another relative of Etruscan? Well, if the Proto-Etruscans managed it to migrate southwards to Campania, another branch may just as well have made it to Lemnos, during the so called bronze age collapse.

From this line of reasoning it follows that the language of the Bell Beaker east group was presumably the common ancestor of Raetic, Etruscan and Lemnian, and that the „Celtic from the West“ theory must be wrong. Apparently most of the R1b-U152 got Celticized and spread westwards after that, to France and Switzerland.

eurologist said...

From this line of reasoning it follows that the language of the Bell Beaker east group was presumably the common ancestor of Raetic, Etruscan and Lemnian, and that the „Celtic from the West“ theory must be wrong. Apparently most of the R1b-U152 got Celticized and spread westwards after that, to France and Switzerland.

Simon_W,

I am not sure how you associate these relatively widespread, successful groups with Bell Beaker folks, who most everywhere were a small minority among previously-existing agriculturalists, with little noticeable legacy.

I agree, though, that "Celtic from the West," before very late Celtic expansion, is a ludicrous idea with zero archaeological, linguistic, or genetic support.

However, as I have mentioned numerous times, IMO there is no documented materialization of early Celtic to the East of the Rhine, and most surrounding areas seem to be stuck in some proto-Celtic / proto-Italic - derived language (W and SW edge of the alps) or tend more towards proto-Germanic / Proto-Italic (N and NE edge of Alps -- until some Celtic-speaking trading posts were established, very late, during eastward Celtic expansion.

There are very, very few clearly Celtic toponyms east of the Rhine, and virtually none for landmarks, hills, mountains, and even rivers. Those that may be derived from Celtic are trading posts (i.e., founded by a Celtic-speaking elite among non-Celtic speakers). For most others, one has to keep in mind that proto-Celtic and proto-Germanic were so close that they simply offer no diagnostic power in this respect.

There are also new linguistic developments. For example, a recent analysis of hal (as in Hallstatt and the Greek word that gave us halogen) suggests a completely different origin than sal; namely, one that is Germanic and describes the process of making salt by evaporation (akin words for crust etc.).

Simon_W said...

Well eurologist, AFAIK archeology doesn't speak of different local cultures besides the migrant Bell Beaker culture, but rather of various local Bell Beaker groups. At least after the Bell Beaker package had become fully established. The culture in southern Bavaria and upper Austria at the final stage of the Chalcolithic is called Bell Beaker culture, or more precisely the eastern group of the Bell Beaker culture; there is no other culture known that existed there at the same time.

But in using this designation I don't intend to imply that the majority of the people there, nor their language, was immigrant. I didn't say anything about their origin.

But, you know, to me it's clear that the early bronze age in southern Germany was a continuation of the preceding Bell Beaker population. From physical anthropology this is obvious, and also culturally there was no hiatus or revolution. Then, the middle bronze age saw the expansion of the Tumulus culture. In the past this was attributed to an invasion from the Danubian area; nowadays archeologists more often look for local continuities. However, this is merely a fashion; the pendulum may well turn back one day. In any case, a bronze age expansion from the Danubian area would be an excellent explanation for the expansion of Italo-Celtic related languages from southeastern Europe (where they once must have thrived, because they reached Italy from there) to central Europe. An earlier expansion seems unlikely, given the late presence of Etrusco-Raetic in central Europe. It's also known that the Alpine group of the Tumulus culture didn't have tumuli. So, there still was local diversity, and the possibility of continuation for remnants of the earlier populations. The ensuing Urnfield culture is afaik seen as a continuation and expansion of this central European group of peoples, which was mostly Celtic-related, or as you say, Italo-Celto-Germanic-related, but apparently it also included other, even non-IE groups.

IMO, in the light of this new genetic evidence, the Etruscans definitely migrated at the final bronze age to Italy, they were responsible for the Protovillanovan culture. Given the close relationship of Lemnian and Etruscan plus the established fact of the turmoils at the final bronze age, which were also noticeable in the Aegean, and even much farther, it's very likely that the forebear of Lemnian migrated at the same time.

So, that's how I see the continuity from eastern Bell Beakers to Etruscans, Raeti and Lemnians.

Dr Rob said...

@Simon W vs Eurologist

"To me it looks as though the Italic tribes had southeastern European connections and the Etruscans more northern, central European ones, both archeologically and genetically."

I agree with Simon W. All the evidence suggests that Northern Italy was either Celtic (incl venetic) or non-IE.

On the other hand, you have ample archaeological evidence for west Balkan - Italic cultural koinon from BA into IA, starting with the "Cetina culture" in central Dalmatia. This included northern NW Greece, which only became Greek gradually from Mycenaean times onto historic times.

Such links are not only evidence in some linguistic finds (a/p A Garrett), but also in that the Roman called the Hellenes "Graeci".

dalboscofamily said...

Neolithic came in Italy from mountains to rivers from Tirol to Sicily. Indoeuropeans.

Tuscano said...

When it is said that Italian male lines descend from "few common ancestors" that lived between the "late Neolithic and early Metal Ages", do these estimates mean ancestors living at Italy at that time, as in Neolithic and Eneolithic peoples already in Italy?

idurar said...

Hi, I don't know if somebody already mentioned it but you may pay attention to this recent study which has a sample from Brescia in Northern Italy with local Italians AND three other ethnic groups (migrants) which live in the same region. Although the paper is kinda disappointing, the idea is interesting:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3692336/

V Robazza said...

Although I am a few months late, I like to ask why has this paper look like its been "doctored" ( if thats the right word)in regards to:
1 - missing Ydna from Aviano Friuli when mtdna is sampled....clearly they sampled the men and did not like the results.
2 - no trentino or south tyrol for ydna or mtdna sampled, again doctoring the paper to make it look like it makes sense.
need to rely on cioa paper for any results there

Pneumatikon said...

Great report. I'm happy to see it dawn on people that the idea the Italic tribesmen came from the north is actually pretty ridiculous. My opinion? They came from Crete. There are a lot of J2a men in Central Italy that aren't supposed to be there, and a map of J2a men in Europe is a stunning match for the Roman Empire through Claudius. Notice the spike in their numbers in Venice: that was a well-known refuge for Romans fleeing the Huns and the Germans. The Romans also officially moved their capital to Constantinople – and moved thousands of people there to fill it up. Generals. Senators. Bureaucrats. The city itself and the region surrounding the city match Crete very nicely. Exactly what you would expect if the Romans were from there originally.

We know from Linear B records that Crete made a big push into Italy and Palestine between the Mycenaean Greek conquest and the Bronze Age collapse. In Palestine they were known as the Philistines - where they eventually got thrown in with the violent Sea Peoples. Until then the Philistines and Israelites were getting along just fine. (Fun fact: if you go with Biblical chronology, the Mycenaean conquest and the Exodus happened the exact same year.)