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View Full Version : DNA study reveals 130,000 Hungarians are at least 50% Jewish



talombo
08-13-2019, 02:45 PM
https://www.jpost.com/Diaspora/DNA-study-reveals-130000-Hungarians-are-at-least-50-percent-Jewish-598498

passenger
08-13-2019, 03:20 PM
Interesting. It doesn't surprise me all that much, but I really wonder how they extrapolate that figure from MH data, considering how skewed their numbers are (not just the economic factors mentioned in the article, but also the number of expats that take the test in a given country). I'm sure they've taken that into account, but it's always a bit mysterious to me.

artemv
08-13-2019, 04:58 PM
I will type here current data on averages, that is published on myheritage.


MyHeritage has collected DNA data from people around the world. Using the Ethnicities around the world feature, you can explore the most common ethnicities in different countries, and the top countries for each ethnicity, according to MyHeritage DNA users' data.

When viewing most common ethnicities in a country, the percentages next to the ethnicities represent the total number of MyHeritage DNA users in that country who have that ethnicity. For example, 66.8% of MyHeritage DNA users in Italy have Italian heritage. The percentages do not include how much Italian heritage was found in each Ethnicity Estimate, only the portion of the MyHeritage DNA users in Italy with Italian in their Ethnicity Estimates.

Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity - top countries
Israel - 51.6%
Hungary - 18,3%
Argentina - 14,5%
Russia - 14,2%
South Africa - 11,9%
Equador - 11,7%
Panama - 11,5%
Monaco - 11,2%
Colombia - 10,7%
Chile - 10,6%
Romania - 10,3%
Brazil - 10,3%
...
Ukraine - 9,8%
...
Poland - 4,8%

I guess Ashkenazi Jewish in many Latin America countries comes partly from Sephardim as it is sometimes difficult to recognize the difference properly, especially from a person with a heavy mix of Mediterranean ancestries.
But Jewish admixture in East Europe is mostly recent. People here on AG wrote that is looks like an overestimation, when I wrote about 1 mln of people in Moscow who have a right to immigrate to Israel under the law of return (lets call them "potential repartiants" for short). I do not insist on this number 1 mln, as I never conducted an investigation myself, but I am quite sure that 300 thousands of "potential repartiants" in all Russia is definitely a very serious underestimation.

passenger
08-13-2019, 07:38 PM
I will type here current data on averages, that is published on myheritage.



Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity - top countries
Israel - 51.6%
Hungary - 18,3%
Argentina - 14,5%
Russia - 14,2%
South Africa - 11,9%
Equador - 11,7%
Panama - 11,5%
Monaco - 11,2%
Colombia - 10,7%
Chile - 10,6%
Romania - 10,3%
Brazil - 10,3%
...
Ukraine - 9,8%
...
Poland - 4,8%

I guess Ashkenazi Jewish in many Latin America countries comes partly from Sephardim as it is sometimes difficult to recognize the difference properly, especially from a person with a heavy mix of Mediterranean ancestries.
But Jewish admixture in East Europe is mostly recent. People here on AG wrote that is looks like an overestimation, when I wrote about 1 mln of people in Moscow who have a right to immigrate to Israel under the law of return (lets call them "potential repartiants" for short). I do not insist on this number 1 mln, as I never conducted an investigation myself, but I am quite sure that 300 thousands of "potential repartiants" in all Russia is definitely a very serious underestimation.

I'm not saying that there's overcounting or undercounting as far as specific studies are concerned. I would assume that the statisticians MH worked with on the above study took the necessary variables into account. But clearly MH figures in themselves are not a reliable indicator of real percentages of people with Jewish heritage (or any heritage for that matter) in a given country, since they're only telling you figures based on the percentage of people who happen to have ordered one of their kits in a given country, regardless of whether the individuals actually live in that country or have ancestors who lived in that country. Even if we're just talking about citizens of that country, how can MH users possibly be a representative cross-section of the national population as a whole? Are we to believe that 12% of South Africans have Ashkenazi ancestry, when less than 9% of the population is white (yes, I'm sure there are a few people with Jewish ancestry who aren't classified as white, but you get the picture)?

StillWater
08-13-2019, 08:23 PM
I will type here current data on averages, that is published on myheritage.



Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity - top countries
Israel - 51.6%
Hungary - 18,3%
Argentina - 14,5%
Russia - 14,2%
South Africa - 11,9%
Equador - 11,7%
Panama - 11,5%
Monaco - 11,2%
Colombia - 10,7%
Chile - 10,6%
Romania - 10,3%
Brazil - 10,3%
...
Ukraine - 9,8%
...
Poland - 4,8%

I guess Ashkenazi Jewish in many Latin America countries comes partly from Sephardim as it is sometimes difficult to recognize the difference properly, especially from a person with a heavy mix of Mediterranean ancestries.
But Jewish admixture in East Europe is mostly recent. People here on AG wrote that is looks like an overestimation, when I wrote about 1 mln of people in Moscow who have a right to immigrate to Israel under the law of return (lets call them "potential repartiants" for short). I do not insist on this number 1 mln, as I never conducted an investigation myself, but I am quite sure that 300 thousands of "potential repartiants" in all Russia is definitely a very serious underestimation.

It's recent in Russia, but not elsewhere in Eastern Europe. How many Russians have Ukrainian, Polish, Belarusian etc ancestry? A lot may be through those lines.

lgmayka
08-13-2019, 11:25 PM
Even if we're just talking about citizens of that country, how can MH users possibly be a representative cross-section of the national population as a whole?
- People who suspect unusual or "exotic" ancestry are more likely to order DNA tests.
- People whose culture highly values genealogy (Adam begat Seth, Jacob begat Joseph, etc.) are more likely to order DNA tests.
- People with higher income, education, etc., are more likely to order DNA tests.

I wonder whether statisticians can accurately adjust for all such factors.

StillWater
08-14-2019, 12:03 AM
- People who suspect unusual or "exotic" ancestry are more likely to order DNA tests.
- People whose culture highly values genealogy (Adam begat Seth, Jacob begat Joseph, etc.) are more likely to order DNA tests.
- People with higher income, education, etc., are more likely to order DNA tests.

I wonder whether statisticians can accurately adjust for all such factors.

Statistics is a large part of ethnicity estimation. And we know how well MyHeritage does that.

jonahst
08-14-2019, 12:08 AM
I will type here current data on averages, that is published on myheritage.



Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity - top countries
Israel - 51.6%
Hungary - 18,3%
Argentina - 14,5%
Russia - 14,2%
South Africa - 11,9%
Equador - 11,7%
Panama - 11,5%
Monaco - 11,2%
Colombia - 10,7%
Chile - 10,6%
Romania - 10,3%
Brazil - 10,3%
...
Ukraine - 9,8%
...
Poland - 4,8%

I guess Ashkenazi Jewish in many Latin America countries comes partly from Sephardim as it is sometimes difficult to recognize the difference properly, especially from a person with a heavy mix of Mediterranean ancestries.
But Jewish admixture in East Europe is mostly recent. People here on AG wrote that is looks like an overestimation, when I wrote about 1 mln of people in Moscow who have a right to immigrate to Israel under the law of return (lets call them "potential repartiants" for short). I do not insist on this number 1 mln, as I never conducted an investigation myself, but I am quite sure that 300 thousands of "potential repartiants" in all Russia is definitely a very serious underestimation.

I believe the % is the proportion of people in each country with some ancestry from these ethnic groups. I'm actually surprised it's so low in Israel considering that most non-Ashkenazi Jews and many non-Jewish Levantines get a small % of Ashkenazi.

But I would guess that the vast majority of Latin Americans and Eastern Europeans have a tiny percentage Ashkenazi (1-5%). I don't think this reflects the number of people eligible for Law of Return.

StillWater
08-14-2019, 12:14 AM
I believe the % is the proportion of people in each country with some ancestry from these ethnic groups. I'm actually surprised it's so low in Israel considering that most non-Ashkenazi Jews and many non-Jewish Levantines get a small % of Ashkenazi.

But I would guess that the vast majority of Latin Americans and Eastern Europeans have a tiny percentage Ashkenazi (1-5%). I don't think this reflects the number of people eligible for Law of Return.

Artem's point is that unlike in other countries, Russians who make up that statistic, are of recent Ashkenazi ancestry or at least a larger proportion are. I'm skeptical of his claim, but he read the data properly.

StillWater
08-14-2019, 12:24 AM
Actually, we can partly test this claim, assuming the proportion of those who are half to fully Jewish aren't over represented in on MH relative to those who are 1/4 Jewish (in the case of Russia). Given MyHeritage's matching system, everyone who is fully Ashkenazi should have about the same amount of matches from Russia. See what proportion are 1/4 Jewish.

I'm betting everyone who is fully Ashkenazi has 95-110 matches in Russia.

Ownstyler
08-14-2019, 12:53 AM
There is absolutely no way of demonstrating, through autosomal DNA alone, that it is these Hungarians who have Jewish ancestry, and not Jewish people who have Hungarian ancestry.

StillWater
08-14-2019, 01:43 AM
There is absolutely no way of demonstrating, through autosomal DNA alone, that it is these Hungarians who have Jewish ancestry, and not Jewish people who have Hungarian ancestry.

If they score 50+% Ashkenazi, then it's them who have Jewish ancestry.

Ownstyler
08-14-2019, 03:18 AM
If they score 50+% Ashkenazi, then it's them who have Jewish ancestry.

Why is that?

StillWater
08-14-2019, 03:23 AM
Why is that?

How likely is it that the Ashkenazi reference panel has enough Hungarian segments to assign these people 50% Ashkenazi?

artemv
08-14-2019, 03:44 AM
I believe the % is the proportion of people in each country with some ancestry from these ethnic groups. I'm actually surprised it's so low in Israel considering that most non-Ashkenazi Jews and many non-Jewish Levantines get a small % of Ashkenazi.
Yes, 51% also seemed to be too low for me.
It would be interesting to see results of Sephardi or Mizrahi Jews on MyHeritage, if they really have that tiny Ashkenazi percent.


But I would guess that the vast majority of Latin Americans and Eastern Europeans have a tiny percentage Ashkenazi (1-5%). I don't think this reflects the number of people eligible for Law of Return.
I wrote that East European people with Ashkenazy ancestry, unlike Latin Americans, have mostly recent ancestry.


I'm not saying that there's overcounting or undercounting as far as specific studies are concerned. I would assume that the statisticians MH worked with on the above study took the necessary variables into account. But clearly MH figures in themselves are not a reliable indicator of real percentages of people with Jewish heritage (or any heritage for that matter) in a given country, since they're only telling you figures based on the percentage of people who happen to have ordered one of their kits in a given country, regardless of whether the individuals actually live in that country or have ancestors who lived in that country. Even if we're just talking about citizens of that country, how can MH users possibly be a representative cross-section of the national population as a whole? Are we to believe that 12% of South Africans have Ashkenazi ancestry, when less than 9% of the population is white (yes, I'm sure there are a few people with Jewish ancestry who aren't classified as white, but you get the picture)?

I guess most people in this statistics do not order kits in MH, as it is possible to load data from23andme and other companies.

Population in East European countries is much more homogenous culturally, if we compare them to South Africa or most American countries. There is no such a deep divide between groups like in South Africa or in many Latin American countries. In East Europe it cannot happen that moslty some wealthy minority, genetically different from most population, orders tests.
I never claimed that 14% of Russian population has recent Jewish ancestry. I wanted to say that given population structure in Russia, if only 300 thousand (0,2% of country population) had recent Ashkenazy ancestry that would not give 14% in overall results. But ok, probably that numbers from MH do not indicate well.

StillWater
08-14-2019, 03:53 AM
Population in East European countries is much more homogenous culturally, if we compare them to South Africa or most American countries. There is no such a deep divide between groups like in South Africa or in many Latin American countries. In East Europe it cannot happen that moslty some wealthy minority, genetically different from most population, orders tests.
I never claimed that 14% of Russian population has recent Jewish ancestry. I wanted to say that given population structure in Russia, if only 300 thousand (0,2% of country population) had recent Ashkenazy ancestry that would not give 14% in overall results. But ok, probably that numbers from MH do not indicate well.

I noticed a trend among Soviet Jews to get MyHeritage kits. This trend may have influenced their relatives still living in Russia to get such tests. If this trend began with Jews, then it's not shocking if it reached a higher % of Jews in Russia than others.

jonahst
08-14-2019, 04:57 AM
Yes, 51% also seemed to be too low for me.
It would be interesting to see results of Sephardi or Mizrahi Jews on MyHeritage, if they really have that tiny Ashkenazi percent.


I wrote that East European people with Ashkenazy ancestry, unlike Latin Americans, have mostly recent ancestry.



I guess most people in this statistics do not order kits in MH, as it is possible to load data from23andme and other companies.

Population in East European countries is much more homogenous culturally, if we compare them to South Africa or most American countries. There is no such a deep divide between groups like in South Africa or in many Latin American countries. In East Europe it cannot happen that moslty some wealthy minority, genetically different from most population, orders tests.
I never claimed that 14% of Russian population has recent Jewish ancestry. I wanted to say that given population structure in Russia, if only 300 thousand (0,2% of country population) had recent Ashkenazy ancestry that would not give 14% in overall results. But ok, probably that numbers from MH do not indicate well.

I think 300,000 might have a fully Jewish grandparent. Many more people might have more distant Jewish ancestry. Also, as others have noted, there could be an extreme overrepresentation of Jews among Russian testing with MyHeritage, especially since it's an Israeli company. Jews are definitely way overrepresented among Americans doing DNA tests.

Just going through my first 30 matches that live in Russia, I notice that half (15) are mostly or fully Ashkenazi (80-100% with the rest usually being MENA, Southern European, or other Jewish). The other half are a mix from 25% - 75%. I don't really notice any patterns with age oddly enough. My most distant matches are overall much less Ashkenazi, with most having under 25% and one not having any! Though there are a few who are 75-100%.

jetshop
08-14-2019, 09:04 AM
I have 83 matches in Russia, 64 in Hungary, 33 in Ukraine, 16 in the Czech Republic, 10 in Poland, 9 in Slovakia and Romania, and 2 in Belarus. Most of my matches in the first few pages appear to be either fully Ashkenazi or have a bit of something else that's not unusual, like Sephardic or various MENA categories. The final matches have a great grandparent who was Jewish. I've noticed more than a few people have trees managed by somebody in Israel, the company MyHeritage is from, so I wonder if that says anything about the likelihood of the results we're seeing.

An interesting thing about the Hungarian matches (and a few of the purely Ashkenazi Slovak ones) is that a lot of them, compared to others, seem to have Hungarian surnames instead of ones derived from Hebrew, Yiddish, or German. In one person's case, a late 19th century man born to a father with the last name Weisz is shown as having the last name Kovács, a very common Hungarian surname. There are other instances where people's ancestors appear to suddenly acquire other common Hungarian names like Horváth and Tóth, or topographic ones for towns or regions they're ostensibly from (e.g. Borsod -> Borsodi), despite their ancestors having very typically Ashkenazi surnames. My father's parents are from Hungary (and what is now Slovakia) as well but all the surnames that I'm aware of in our tree are typical Ashkenazi ones, sometimes with Hungarian spellings. Does this seem to be the case with anybody else's Hungarian or Slovak matches?

eolien
08-15-2019, 07:57 AM
I have 83 matches in Russia, 64 in Hungary, 33 in Ukraine, 16 in the Czech Republic, 10 in Poland, 9 in Slovakia and Romania, and 2 in Belarus. Most of my matches in the first few pages appear to be either fully Ashkenazi or have a bit of something else that's not unusual, like Sephardic or various MENA categories. The final matches have a great grandparent who was Jewish. I've noticed more than a few people have trees managed by somebody in Israel, the company MyHeritage is from, so I wonder if that says anything about the likelihood of the results we're seeing.

An interesting thing about the Hungarian matches (and a few of the purely Ashkenazi Slovak ones) is that a lot of them, compared to others, seem to have Hungarian surnames instead of ones derived from Hebrew, Yiddish, or German. In one person's case, a late 19th century man born to a father with the last name Weisz is shown as having the last name Kovács, a very common Hungarian surname. There are other instances where people's ancestors appear to suddenly acquire other common Hungarian names like Horváth and Tóth, or topographic ones for towns or regions they're ostensibly from (e.g. Borsod -> Borsodi), despite their ancestors having very typically Ashkenazi surnames. My father's parents are from Hungary (and what is now Slovakia) as well but all the surnames that I'm aware of in our tree are typical Ashkenazi ones, sometimes with Hungarian spellings. Does this seem to be the case with anybody else's Hungarian or Slovak matches?

There was a huge wave of assimilation and conversion in Hungary starting from late 19th century. The first step was to change your surname.

mildlycurly
08-26-2019, 10:02 PM
This does not surprise me at all.

It was extremely common for Hungarian Jews to convert to Christianity and magyarise their surnames during the Haskalah (Jewish Enlightenment). A fair few of my Hungarian matches have sizeable amounts of Ashkenazi ancestry. While the religious Jews (even the Reform) tended of course to marry other Jews, many of the Hungarian Jews who didn't convert to Christianity became so secularised as not to give intermarriage a second thought. They thought of themselves as ethnic Hungarians whose ancestors happened to practice Judaism. In other words, their ancestors were Jewish; they were not.

Of course, DNA testing now shows that Ashkenazi Jews are a distinct people of mixed Semitic and European origins. A lot of people (especially the Orthodox) look upon the diffusion of Jewish DNA through intermarriage as bad, some even calling it a "silent Holocaust". I tend to view it as generally a positive thing- a lot are raised Jewish or eventually reclaim their Jewish roots in some form or other. I'm one of the latter, and even before finding out about my Ashkenazi ancestry I had a strong interest in anything Jewish. Blood knows home.

Generalissimo
08-27-2019, 04:12 AM
As far as I can see, none of the publicly available academic Hungarian or Russian reference samples shows significant Jewish ancestry.

What are the chances of that in the light of this commercial study based on customer data?

StillWater
08-27-2019, 09:59 AM
As far as I can see, none of the publicly available academic Hungarian or Russian reference samples shows significant Jewish ancestry.

What are the chances of that in the light of this commercial study based on customer data?

The bias might work both ways. An academic study would question the subjects on their ancestry and thus would eliminate those with known or plausible Ashkenazi ancestry. Furthermore, even past the interview process, the available reference samples might've also been filtered for such outliers prior to being used/published.

Petr
08-27-2019, 10:36 AM
Maybe this can explain why my Hungarian friend has 80 % Ashkenazi ancestry - but no known Jewish ancestor 3-4 generations back.

Ancestry DNA: 81 % European Jewish
23andMe: 73 % Ashkenazi Jewish
MyHeritage: 72 % Ashkenazi Jewish
FTDNA: 80 % Jewish Diaspora - Ashkenazi

artemv
08-27-2019, 11:09 AM
As far as I can see, none of the publicly available academic Hungarian or Russian reference samples shows significant Jewish ancestry.

What are the chances of that in the light of this commercial study based on customer data?

Agree with StillWater.
This means that Ashkenazi Jewish admixture in Hungarians is mostly recent, of 19th and 20th centuries. It is possible for academcs for filter out people with some Jewish ancestry last 3-4 generations. You can check methods - probably they also filter out outliers (people who do not know about their non-Russian or non-Hungarian ancestry but show it after test).


Maybe this can explain why my Hungarian friend has 80 % Ashkenazi ancestry - but no known Jewish ancestor 3-4 generations back.

Ancestry DNA: 81 % European Jewish
23andMe: 73 % Ashkenazi Jewish
MyHeritage: 72 % Ashkenazi Jewish
FTDNA: 80 % Jewish Diaspora - Ashkenazi

No, this could not explain. 5-10% percent of Ashkenazi admixture can be a mistake - but not 70-80% percent. This means, that some mistake has happened in the testing company and they mixed him with some other person. Alternatively, he might be not a biological son of his parents or his parents didn't tell him his true family story.

Generalissimo
08-27-2019, 11:10 AM
The bias might work both ways. An academic study would question the subjects on their ancestry and thus would eliminate those with known or plausible Ashkenazi ancestry. Furthermore, even past the interview process, the available reference samples might've also been filtered for such outliers prior to being used/published.

That's possible to a degree, but the Estonian Biocentre doesn't remove outliers and other places mark samples as outliers but then leave them in.

My point was that the sort of revelation that this article was reporting on would've probably been discovered earlier if it was true.

StillWater
08-27-2019, 12:18 PM
Maybe this can explain why my Hungarian friend has 80 % Ashkenazi ancestry - but no known Jewish ancestor 3-4 generations back.

Ancestry DNA: 81 % European Jewish
23andMe: 73 % Ashkenazi Jewish
MyHeritage: 72 % Ashkenazi Jewish
FTDNA: 80 % Jewish Diaspora - Ashkenazi

That's crazy. I'm fully Ashkenazi and these are my results:

AncestryDNA: 100% European Jewish
MyHeritage: 89% Ashkenazi + 4% Sephardi
FTDNA: 87% Ashkenazi

What are the other categories assigned to him by AncestryDNA and 23andMe?

3K.
09-20-2019, 10:33 PM
>DNA study reveals 130,000 Hungarians are at least 50% Jewish
Color me surprised.
Call it a coincidence but gee, could it perhaps have anything to do with the Hungarian society culturally pressuring Hungarian Jews to gradually drop the "foreign" religion and customs and adopt the "appropriate society-approved customs and moral laws" (i.e. Roman Catholicism) for centuries now? On the other hand, many Hungarian Jews did so of their own volition.

mzg139
02-17-2020, 07:49 PM
Sure, there might be traces of Jewish ancestry in Hungary but I think My Heritage overestimates Ashkenazi ancestry by conflating it with Eastern Mediterranean/North Africa. It gave me 4% Ashkenazi despite the fact that my ancestors were Serbs who lived under Ottomans for 500 years where the only Jewish community spoke Ladino, a version of Spanish. 23rd and me classifies the 4% as Anatolian which I think makes more sense.

Tanchik
09-07-2020, 03:15 PM
By Myheritage the whole world is Jewish. Almost everyone score Ashkenazi even Palastinians Lebanese and Armedinians

Dorkymon
09-07-2020, 04:33 PM
By Myheritage the whole world is Jewish. Almost everyone score Ashkenazi even Palastinians Lebanese and Armedinians

Most results that I've seen don't score any.

rober_tce
09-07-2020, 05:09 PM
Most results that I've seen don't score any.

Agree, in fact these are some of percentages of MH users that score Ashkenazi Jewish:

Israel
51.6%
Hungary
18.3%
Argentina
14.5%
Russia
14.2%
South Africa
11.9%
Ecuador
11.7%
Panamá
11.5%
Mónaco
11.2%
México
10.7%
Colombia
10.7%
Chile
10.6%
Romania
10.3%
Brazil
10.3%
Liechtenstein
9.9%
Guatemala
9.9%
Ukraine
9.8%
Bulgary
9.1%
Venezuela
8.7%
República Dominicana
8.6%
Portugal
8.5%
Puerto Rico
8.2%
Georgia
8%
Luxembourg
7.5%
Perú
7.4%
Austria
7.3%
Albania
7.3%
France
7.2%
Belarus
7.2%
United States
7.1%
Slovakia
7.1%
Spain
7.1%
Switzerland
7.1%

PD: I have traslated countries names because I took the list of my My Heritage account, which it's in spanish language, sorry if I have missed any country.

Riverman
09-07-2020, 05:27 PM
MH is among the big commercial testers the one with the highest rates of false positives and negatives for AJ respectively. This is particularly noticeable in comparison to 23andme, but even for FTDNA.
But the 50+ for Israel makes even then little sense.

rober_tce
09-07-2020, 05:42 PM
MH is among the big commercial testers the one with the highest rates of false positives and negatives for AJ respectively. This is particularly noticeable in comparison to 23andme, but even for FTDNA.
But the 50+ for Israel makes even then little sense.

If we analyse ethnic distribution by countries, Israel in this case, we have these percentages:

Ashkenazi Jewish
51.6%
Sephardic Jewish - North African
22.8%
Middle East
21.2%
Italian
15.5%
West Asian
14.3%
Mizraji Jewish - Iranian / Iraqi
13.8%
Iberian
12.6%
Balkan
11.7%
North African
11.5%
Greek and Southern Italy
11.3%
Eastern european
11%
Yemenite Jewish
8.5%
Scandinavian
8.2%
Northwest European
8.2%
Baltic
8.1%
English
4.6%
Mesoamerican and Andean
4%
Finnish
3.2%
Sardinian
2.3%
Irish, Scottish and Welsh
2.3%
South Asian
2.2%
Nigerian
2.2%

passenger
09-07-2020, 05:47 PM
MH is among the big commercial testers the one with the highest rates of false positives and negatives for AJ respectively. This is particularly noticeable in comparison to 23andme, but even for FTDNA.
But the 50+ for Israel makes even then little sense.

Do you have actual statistics on this? From what I've seen anecdotally I'm inclined to agree that MH gives a number of false positives for AJ, but I'm not sure how one could prove that.

And why does 50+ Ashkenazi Jewish for Israel make little sense? It makes perfect sense to me. About half of Israeli Jews identify as Ashkenazi, so that would be less than 50% of the total population, but there are for sure many Sephardi/Mizrahi identifying Jews with actual Ashkenazi roots, or who score Ashkenazi due to genetic overlap, and Israeli Jewish testers are probably overrepresented as compared with Israeli Arab/Palestinian testers and others.

The numbers rober_tce posted are probably inflated for most countries, but we can't attribute that to false positives alone. Surely, as I and others have said before, it's also due to overrepresentation of testers from particular social, economic and ethnic backgrounds.

Riverman
09-07-2020, 07:01 PM
Do you have actual statistics on this? From what I've seen anecdotally I'm inclined to agree that MH gives a number of false positives for AJ, but I'm not sure how one could prove that.


No statistics, but just what I could observe from people with known ancestry and results from other sources to compare with. 23andme has a much lower rate of false positives/negatives.


And why does 50+ Ashkenazi Jewish for Israel make little sense? It makes perfect sense to me. About half of Israeli Jews identify as Ashkenazi, so that would be less than 50% of the total population, but there are for sure many Sephardi/Mizrahi identifying Jews with actual Ashkenazi roots, or who score Ashkenazi due to genetic overlap, and Israeli Jewish testers are probably overrepresented as compared with Israeli Arab/Palestinian testers and others.

Because that would mean they would be perfect in assigning different Jewish ancestries, when they don't even get the easiest (Ashkenazi Jewish) sample right. Doesn't make sense. Otherwise even most non-Ashkenazi Jewish from Israel should test at least a minor AJ and chances that all minorities in Israel send in more than 40 percent of the tests, considering how active AJ are in commercial testing, would be an oxymoron.


The numbers rober_tce posted are probably inflated for most countries, but we can't attribute that to false positives alone. Surely, as I and others have said before, it's also due to overrepresentation of testers from particular social, economic and ethnic backgrounds.

Agreed, but I think the false positives contribute too. Its a shame because MH has a nice site and good data base, but there ethnictiy estimates are among the worst offered. Hopefully they can improve with the next update.

Btw: I think it might still reflect some reality, since Hungarians might have more often mixed with assimilated Jewish people than many others, its just that the numbers can't be trusted for more than one reason.

Targum
09-07-2020, 07:14 PM
MH is among the big commercial testers the one with the highest rates of false positives and negatives for AJ respectively. This is particularly noticeable in comparison to 23andme, but even for FTDNA.
But the 50+ for Israel makes even then little sense.

The percentage in Israel does make sense; slight majority to non-Ashkenazi jews, with greater and greater numbers of Israeli Jews being of various (AJ, SJ, YJ, Mizrahhi, Italqi, Romaniote etc) jewish backgrounds.

Riverman
09-07-2020, 07:16 PM
The percentage in Israel does make sense; slight majority to non-Ashkenazi jews, with greater and greater numbers of Israeli Jews being of various (AJ, SJ, YJ, Mizrahhi, Italqi, Romaniote etc) jewish backgrounds.

But that would mean that all Jewish people have the same testing behaviour in Israel and that MH is perfect in distinguishing the different ancestral Jewish groups. I doubt both. I mean to the decimal place? Never.

What's the threshold for counting?

talombo
09-08-2020, 07:15 AM
Actually MH isn't selling kits in Israel and blocks raw data uploads from Israeli IP numbers, I guess the Israeli kits are from Israelis who live abroad or somehow managed to upload using a proxy so I don't know if it's a good representative of Israelis.

Riverman
09-08-2020, 07:24 AM
Actually MH isn't selling kits in Israel and blocks raw data uploads from Israeli IP numbers, I guess the Israeli kits are from Israelis who live abroad or somehow managed to upload using a proxy so I don't know if it's a good representative of Israelis.

What's the reason for this policy?

talombo
09-08-2020, 07:46 AM
What's the reason for this policy?

Technically DNA testing is illegal in Israel because of some old law but nobody is enforcing that law, Israelis can order kits from 23andme and ftdna without any problems.

passenger
09-08-2020, 05:01 PM
Actually MH isn't selling kits in Israel and blocks raw data uploads from Israeli IP numbers, I guess the Israeli kits are from Israelis who live abroad or somehow managed to upload using a proxy so I don't know if it's a good representative of Israelis.

I've wondered about that. I'd heard before that MH didn't distribute kits in Israel, yet my mom has 256 matches from Israel and I have 160. I would expect more, but that still seems like a sizeable number for a country where access to the kits is supposedly blocked. That also might change my impression of how MH compiles their statistics, since, at least in the Israeli case, it would seemingly have to be based on the country listed under the customer's account preferences, rather than where they bought the kit from.