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Thread: "New" Research Shows That Some Ancient Egyptians Were Naturally Fair-Haired

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    "New" Research Shows That Some Ancient Egyptians Were Naturally Fair-Haired

    According to Dr. Janet Davey from the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine in Australia, some ancient Egyptians were naturally blonde or red haired. Her research has brought an answer to an intriguing question connected with Egyptian mummies and the effects of the mummification process.

    An article published recently by The Sydney Morning Herald says that the mystery of the red and blonde hair discovered on some ancient Egyptian mummies may finally be solved. The new research was necessary to check the common perception that no ancient Egyptians had hair that wasn’t colored dark brown or black. Until now, most researchers had claimed that the different colors of the mummy hair were a result of the mummification process itself.

    Dr. Davey decided to do innovative experiments, which she accomplished with the support of her friend, a retired industrial chemist named Alan Elliot. They prepared a quantity of synthetic natron, and used it on 16 hair samples. Natron was a kind of a salt that was used during the process of mummification to dry out the remains and has often been linked to a supposed hair color “change.”

    Davey and Elliot covered samples in the salty powder for 40 days. It is believed that this was the same amount of time that was needed in ancient times to dry out the bodies. The donors of the hair were men and women aged from 4 to 92 years old. Most of the samples were dark hair, with one grey, one fair, and one with henna on it for comparison.

    After 40 days, all the hair was removed from the salty powder and they appeared unchanged. Microscopic analysis also showed no change in the hair.

    Dr. Davey is convinced that there were fair-haired Egyptians, but believes that the fair-haired mummies are just very rare. This is why Egyptologists used to believe that lighter hair color was created during the mummification process. Moreover, Davey suggests that there were blondes living in Egypt during the Graeco-Roman Period (332 BC – 395 AD).

    "Some ancient Egyptians could have been blue-eyed blondes or brown-eyed blondes. I wouldn't say ancient Egypt was multi-cultural like Australia today but certainly there were various mixes." - she said.

    The secret of mummies with differently colored hair is as old as the Egyptian civilization itself. For example, the oldest known mummy with dyed hair is dated back to 3400 BC. It was the Late Pre-dynastic period of Egypt, a very mysterious time in the history of the country.

    The well-preserved mummy of a man was excavated by Wallis Budge in the end of the 19th century. Nowadays, it is exhibited in the British Museum. The mummy was nicknamed ''The Ginger'', due to the color of its hair. The man was mummified naturally, without the use of natron. He was buried at the desert necropolis in Gebelein, Egypt. The mummy of “The Ginger” sheds light on the very early history of Egypt, and suggests that people who created the Egyptian civilizations could have been blonde or red haired too.

    Moreover, one of the greatest pharaohs in history, Ramesses II, had red hair. For many decades, researchers believed that his color was caused by natron applied to the mummy. Another theory said that fair hair in Egyptian mummies was a result of marriages with women from Anatolia. The Hittite prince Zannanza, who was sent from Hattusha to Thebes to marry princess Ankhesenamun, had light skin and hair. The father of the powerful queen Tiye (wife of Amenhotep III), Yuya was blonde as well.

    On December 14, 2014 Ancient Origins reported on a remarkable discovery in Fag el-Gamous necropolis, which lies along the eastern edge of the Fayum depression near Seila in Egypt and dates to the time when the Roman or Byzantine Empire controlled Egypt, from the 1st to the 7th century AD.

    It is an enormous cemetery that is believed to contain over one million burials of ordinary Egyptian citizens that were naturally mummified by the hot and dry desert sands over 1,500 years ago. Over three decades of excavations by Brigham Young University in Utah revealed some incredible finds, such as the remains of large male over 7 feet (2.13 meters) tall, an infant child that was discovered wearing a tunic and jewelry, and unique groupings of burials clustered according to hair color, including blond and redheaded mummies.
    Source: http://www.ancient-origins.net/news-...812?nopaging=1

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    Senior Member Catterick's Avatar
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    It would be nice to know the origin of blondism in NW Africa. Not far from Egypt.

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    a.k.a. Alpensun Ringenwald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catterick View Post
    It would be nice to know the origin of blondism in NW Africa. Not far from Egypt.
    For a large part from the Vandals invasion of North Africa via Spain, no? I'm not a specialist so I don't know much more than that...

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    Senior Member Catterick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpensun View Post
    For a large part from the Vandals invasion of North Africa via Spain, no? I'm not a specialist so I don't know much more than that...
    The Shawia are metrically Nordic according to Coon. However the Reconquista must have caused a migration of Visigoth descendants into the Rif among the other Moors. The problem with this explanation is that blondism corresponds in Morocco and the Canaries to the Mechtoid craniofacial type that was present in the Canaries before they were invaded by Castile.

    In Europe blondism peaks among Baltic Finns but not the Lapps. Its frequency in Scandinavia proper supposedly matches the historical Kvenland. Similarly the gene for blue eyes is highest in the Baltic States and parts of Russia. In these areas is most continuity from the Mesolithic through the Forest Neolithic whilst the North African Mechtoids are of Epigravettian affinities.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catterick View Post
    It would be nice to know the origin of blondism in NW Africa. Not far from Egypt.
    French settlers after 1830?

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    Mein Glaube ist die Liebe zu meinem Volk. Juthunge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpensun View Post
    For a large part from the Vandals invasion of North Africa via Spain, no? I'm not a specialist so I don't know much more than that...
    When the Vandals settled in the region, they were already a mixed bunch and had absorbed much blood of the non-Nordish areas they went through. They were also closely entwined with the non-Germanic Alans by the time.
    They probably brought a small part of the blondism, as there are certain Haplogroups among the Berbers that point to that also.
    But at least most of the (male) Vandals were expelled from North Africa by Belisar and had to fight for the Byzantines against the Persians.

    Quote Originally Posted by Catterick View Post
    However the Reconquista must have caused a migration of Visigoth descendants into the Rif among the other Moors. The problem with this explanation is that blondism corresponds in Morocco and the Canaries to the Mechtoid craniofacial type that was present in the Canaries before they were invaded by Castile.
    It's also highly unlikely, that any of the blondism in Northern Africa stems from Visigoths. They settled mostly in the north of the Iberian Peninsula and that's precisely where the Reconquista started from. Being the conquerors, they were also likely the predominant portion of the Spanish nobility who fought the invasion.
    It also wouldn't make sense why blondism is strongest in the most remote, montainous parts of the region, if it originated among the displaced Spanish Moors. They stayed rather in the coastal cities close to Spain and were the predominant part of the Barbary Corsairs.

    As you said, Blondism was already present in the Canarian Guanches that settled there in BC times.
    This is what he says about the "lightest" Rif Berbers:
    The head hair is black in 44 per cent of the total, and dark to medium brown in 46 per cent; the others are reddish-brown or light brown; in a few cases, golden-blond. These last form less than 1 per cent of the whole, however. The beard is usually much lighter, being black in only 34 per cent of the total, dark or medium brown in 25 per cent, reddish-brown in 14 per cent, light brown in 19 per cent, and golden, ashen, or red in 8 per cent. Seventeen per cent of Riffians show some rufosity in beard color.

    Since the Riffians wear turbans, and since the few adults who still wear pigtails cover all but the ends of these, it is the beard color and not the head hair color which is responsible for the current idea of Riffian blondism. Furthermore the children, who go bareheaded, possess an infantile dominance of blondism, as among Europeans of mixed pigmentation. The blondest hair and beards are found in the central Rif, especially in the tribe of Beni Amart, where over 50 per cent of the men have beards light brown or lighter.
    Coon thought, that among every Mediterranean population there was a small presence of blondism, without necessarily indicating Nordid admixture.
    But he also has other theories for the origin of blondism in northern Africa. From the same link:
    The most troublesome factor in the whole North African racial problem lies in the necessity of explaining the origin of the local Nordics, whose presence as a minority in the populations of Tunisia, Algeria, and northern Morocco, if not in the Canary Islands, cannot be denied. There are two possible explanations, as follows:

    (1) The North African Nordics resemble the mixed Nordics of Upper Palaeolithic inspiration found in Ireland and western Norway more than they do the ash-blond Eastern Valley Nordics of Norway, and those of Sweden. Therefore the so-called Nordics of North Africa are a mixture of brunet Mediterraneans of tall stature and considerable facial length with A.falou survivors. The minor blondism of these "Nordics" is derived from the Afalou side of the ancestry.

    (2) The North African Nordics were partly formed as stated, but not wholly so, for there are some ash-blonds in the Rif; furthermore, the Riffian Nordics are lighter-haired than individuals of Afalou type, just as European Nordics are lighter-haired than are modern representatives of the Brünn race. Blond hair is positively associated with narrow noses, and the Afalou type nose is moderately broad. Unless it is possible to explain these phenomena as genetic recombinatiOns, we must admit a Nordic invasion of North Africa from Europe or Asia as early as the second millennium B.C. Of the two continents, Asia is by far the more likely immediate source.

    The racial history of North Africa may best be understood by analogy with western Europe, since parallel invasions entered both continental sub-areas, and parallel processes of evolution occurred in both. This parallelism started in the Pleistocene, with the sequence of Upper Palaeolithic racial types. This was followed by the entrance of small Mediterraneans into both areas, in Mesolithic and Neolithic times, but of course earlier in North Africa, whence they entered western Europe. Tall brunet Mediterraneans arrived in both areas, by land in North Africa, by sea in western Europe. Nordics entered both from the east. Meanwhile the Palaeolithic types asserted themselves, in both unreduced and smaller, more brachycephalic forms. Thus we have in both regions Afalou or Borreby men, and Alpines. In Europe, we may add the Mongol and Lapp, in North Africa, the Arab and the Negro.

    The difference between North Africa and western Europe racially is largely a difference in the relative numerical survival of the component elements, rather than in the nature of the elements themselves.
    As for the "test" applied in the initial post, I don't know why they don't simply do genetic tests for fair hair and eye colour as the Russians do since ages with the Kurgan people and others. Unless all the DNA is already contaminated or destroyed by now.
    And the day they sold us out, Our hearts grew cold
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    Ancient DNA: List of All Studies analyzing DNA of Ancient Tribes and Ethnicities(post-2010)


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    Mein Glaube ist die Liebe zu meinem Volk. Juthunge's Avatar
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    Posts diverging towards the question, whether ancient Germanics have been miscegenating have been moved to:

    Is Human Miscegenation Unnatural?
    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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