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Thread: The Genetic Prehistory of The Baltic Sea Region

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    The Genetic Prehistory of The Baltic Sea Region

    I'm mostly sharing this for the PCA's because actually it concerns itself only marginally with Scandinavia proper and more with the Baltic(and therefore with the heritage of Slavs and Balts).


    Recent ancient DNA studies have revealed that the genetic history of modern Europeans was shaped by a series of migration and admixture events between deeply diverged groups. While these events are well described in Central and Southern Europe, genetic evidence from Northern Europe surrounding the Baltic Sea is still sparse.

    Here we report genome-wide DNA data from 24 ancient North Europeans ranging from ~7,500 to 200 calBCE spanning the transition from a hunter-gatherer to an agricultural lifestyle, as well as the adoption of bronze metallurgy. We show that Scandinavia was settled after the retreat of the glacial ice sheets from a southern and a northern route, and that the first Scandinavian Neolithic farmers derive their ancestry from Anatolia 1000 years earlier than previously demonstrated.

    The range of Western European Mesolithic hunter-gatherers extended to the east of the Baltic Sea, where these populations persisted without gene-flow from Central European farmers until around 2,900 calBCE when the arrival of steppe pastoralists introduced a major shift in economy and established wide-reaching networks of contact within the Corded Ware Complex.


    The individual from Olsund in north-eastern Sweden was dated to the Late Neolithic (ca. 2,600 to 2,100 calBCE) when agriculture had been introduced to the coastal areas of Northern Sweden with the Battle Axe Culture, the regional variant of the CWC, while foraging persisted as an important form of subsistence.
    The remains were found without any associated artifacts, but in close proximity to a site where the assemblage showed a mix between local hunter-gatherer traditions and CWC influence32.
    On the PCA this sample falls within the European LNBA cluster (Fig. 2A) and similarly to other individuals from this cluster displays the three components derived from WHG, CHG and Neolithic Levant (Fig. 2b) providing genomic evidence for the influence of both the early Neolithic and LNBA expansions having reached as far as northern Sweden in the third millennium.
    General Source / Study / Supplementary Information

    Looking at it in an European or even Eurasian context it's truly striking how closely genetically related modern Celto-Germanics(circled in red by me, different populations also marked in red by me) are from Iceland to the Alps and from Ireland to Sweden.
    The internal variation of our meta-ethnicity is actually less than that within other single ethnicities, such as Italians, Spaniards or the French. Among the latter, even if you exclude the strongly deviating Basques and Gascons:

    Also interesting to interpret these, so called, "Near Eastern" Neolithic farmers.

    This should only be understood in a geographic context only as even the Anatolian farmers are already halfway between modern Europe and the modern Levant. Even the ancient Levans draw much farther towards the European gene pool, than their descendants.

    Those Neolithic farmers, yet uninfluenced by the IE steppe herders, are already as much WHG influenced as modern Spaniards and Northern Italians are and merely lack their additional Steppe and Caucasus influence. And even then, they're not even strongly related to the modern people that now live in their place in north-central Europe.

    Instead, the latter owe much more to the local Hunter Gatherers(of whatever kind) and the IE Steppe herders and their and gene-pool is largely fixed since the late Neolithic/Chalcolithic/early Bronze Age. With movements/migrations within that area making genetically little difference.
    The only difference in (some) modern north-central Europeans compared to much of their ancestors seems to be a slightly higher affinity to Western Hunter Gatherers. Coon's "Upper Palaeolithic reëmergence", anyone?

    It's actually interesting to quote what Coon said about that already decades ago, without any help of DNA testing:

    With the present chapter we enter upon the last west-east drive in our effort to deal systematically with the racial geography of living white peoples. We enter at the same time upon the most complex and, from the biological standpoint, the most difficult aspect of the white racial problem. The history of Europe north of the Pyrenees and south of the Arctic fringe has been largely a matter of the penetration of food-producing Mediterranean peoples into territories held by food-gatherers of Mesolithic tradition, the retreat and submergence of the food-gatherers, and their subsequent racial reëmergence. We have already witnessed the same process in the north, and in Britain, especially Ireland. We have also witnessed a similar process in Morocco and the Canary islands.

    In northern Europe and in Ireland, the reëmergence was of full-sized, unaltered Brünn and Borreby men; in North Africa of both reduced and unreduced Afalou survivors. One suspects, in studying individual living Irish, that the presence of occasional individuals of Alpine appearance may be due to a minor tendency toward size reduction in the Brünn stock, parallel to the reduction evident in some Riffians.

    In central Europe, we shall deal with the Alpine race, a reduced Upper Palaeolithic type, which in its pure form is a medium to short-statured, laterally built, brachycephalic, short and broad-faced, short-nosed, relatively large-jawed, human variety. The perfect Alpine looks very much like the Germanic concept of a dwarf, the small men with snub noses and long beards who live in the mountains and forests, and who foster such poor unfortunates as the Princess Snow White.

    The Mediterranean race is a foreigner on European soil. Only in Spain and Portugal and the western Mediterranean islands, where the large Brünn and Borreby hybrids were never important; only in Great Britain, where geography yields little quarter to ancient survivors; and in eastern Norway and Sweden, where the land was relatively empty before their arrival, could Mediterraneans of either blond or brunet pigmentation survive as unaltered major populations on European soil. Europe owes her civilization to the Mediterraneans, but she owes her blood and bone, to an equal if not a larger extent, to the people who settled the continent during the last interglacial.

    All this to those who claim, that ethnical mixing has always happened in Germanic history and that it makes no difference if you breed with a Russian or a Frenchman or any other non-Celto-Germanic.
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    And the day they sold us out, Our hearts grew cold
    'Cause we were never asked, No brother, we were told!
    What do they know of Europe, Who only Europe know?

    Ancient DNA: List of All Studies analyzing DNA of Ancient Tribes and Ethnicities(post-2010)

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    Based on haplogroups alone, Nordic would be I1 and Mediterranean would be I2, if the theory of a common origin is to be followed. What does that leave? The vast majority are neither subclade of Stone Age haplogroup I, with no relationship to haplogroup J in Asia Minor. Does this make Bronze Age haplogroup R, of either subclade, bearer of Alpine phenotype? Haplogroup N would therefore be related to Lappid.

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