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Thread: Racial Characteristics of South-West England

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    Racial Characteristics of South-West England

    Observations just for Devonshire (highlighted).

    From Wikipedia:

    Devon was one of the first areas of England settled following the end of the last ice age. Dartmoor is thought to have been settled by Mesolithic hunter-gatherer peoples from about 6000 BC. The name 'Devon' derives from the name of the Celtic people who inhabited the south western peninsula of Britain at the time of the Roman invasion c. 50AD , known as the Dumnonii, thought to mean 'Deep Valley Dwellers'. The Romans held the area under military occupation for approximately 25 years. Later the area became a frontier between Brythonic Dumnonia and Anglo-SaxonWessex , and some historians claim that this resulted in the effective conquest of Devon by Wessex by 715 and its formal annexation around 805. However, this is a matter of controversy. Later William of Malmesbury claimed "that the Britons and Saxons inhabited Exeter aequo jure ('as equals') in 927.

    By the ninth century, the major threat to Saxon control of Devon came not from the native British but from Viking raiders, and sporadic incursions continued until the Norman Conquest. A few Norse place names remain as a result, for example Lundy Island, though the Vikings' most lasting legacy is probably the move of the cathedral from Crediton to Exeter.
    Estimation of physical types: Atlanto-Med 40%, Keltic-Nordid 20%, Paleo-Atlantid/Brunn 20% North-Atlantid 10%, Borreby 5%, Nordid 1%>, others minor.

    Occasionally the hues are proper "Mediterranean dark", frequently the same as the rest of England. But no doubt, the people in Devon are noticeably darker than even folk from Dorset & Hamphire. They are also darker of skin IMHO than the Norman French who have not been subject to a French reflux (Channel Islands, Cotentin Peninsula).

    There may be more incidences of dark eyes than the rest of England... Hair is darker than Central & Eastern England and red hair is nearly absent, which surprised me. Blond hair is also uncommon, the majority have shades of brown hair.

    In terms of body builds the inhabitants of Devon & Cornwall contain many more short and broad-shouldered examples than Central & Eastern England, if we think of the English as leptomorphic compared to other parts of Europe, then South-Western England is bucking the trend and many stocky pyknomorphs can be seen, with an infantalised Paleo-Atlantid/Brunn look.

    Perhaps 2% (?) of the males possessed Armenoid/Litorid influenced nasal profiles. Also very few had faint epicanthic folds.

    Generally, the people look like a mix of Celtic and pre-Celtic inhabitants. They look distinct from the rest of England, swarthier and darker (as an aggregate). I am not of the opinion that England smoothly transitions from Teutonic/Keltic in the East to native British in the West, I would say it is "lumpier" than that.


    Historical figures from Devon:

    Pictures of Devonshire people, from the BBC (for what it's worth):


    Other remarks on the racial situation of Devonshire:

    Devon was one of the last areas of what is now known as England to be conqured by the Anglo-Saxon invaders, and was not formally claimed by the Saxon Kindom of Wessex until the early ninth century (805 AD - only a couple of decades before Cornwall was 'conquered', although Cornwall retained some degree of independence thereafter), and even after this (as noted in King Alfred the Great's will in 900 AD), Devon's Celtic people were called Wealcynn (wealas being the Anglo-Saxon word for Celts, and literally translates as 'foreigner').


    Recent genetic evidence (from the BBC 'Blood of the Vikings' series) has indicated that the Celtic peoples in South Western Britain not only survived, but that their gene pool are predominant in the current population.

    Norwegian based research indicates that Devon (and Cornwall) has a far greater proportion of black hair colour than other english counties, a tendancy also seen in Ireland and Scotland. Perhaps this also provides evidence of a common Celtic background, and certainly supports the theory that the Tamar is no 'racial' boundary.

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    Senior Member Arundel's Avatar
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    I found your article very interesting, concerning southwest England. Although I am an American, genetically I am about 95% English. Several of my English ancestors came from the devon and cornwall area. To have so many english genes, I am surprised that I have black hair and brown eyes. My family is all rather short too.
    It sounds like you were describing my family. But the facial features do not compare, as all of my relatives are very fine featured, and attractive. Their facial features are more like the English.

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