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Thread: Could Western Jews (Ash. and Seph.) descend from Aegeans and Levantine admixture?

  1. #5781
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    A big thank you to pmokeefe for bringing the Cretan paper hot off the press to this forum.

    Given what we are slowly but surely learning about aDNA and contemporary DNA of the central and east Mediterranean, the main premise of this thread is being supported by a growing number of research papers. From a personal point of view, I'm naturally disappointed that more comparisons weren't made between Cretans and Cypriots. My understanding from my own genetic profile, and from what I have observed from other evidence, is that apart from Dodecanesians, Cretans are the closest to Cypriots in the Greek world. Syrian Jews, and perhaps even Romaniotes may be closer still. As Jonahst says, it's also disappointing that other western Jewish populations weren't included in the study.


    The paper does say this about the inter-relationship between the three largest islands of the central and eastern Mediterranean i.e. Sicily, Crete and Cyprus:

    "Especially the results of Hellenthal et al. (2014) used GLOBETROTTER to infer (under a pulse-admixture model that has the same assumptions as ALDER) that Greek DNA could be described
    as the mixture of 37% DNA from a Polish-like source and 63% from a Cypriot-like source occurring sometime between 718–1138 C.E.; our analyses here support these findings.

    These results might reflect past settlements to Crete from Europe. Indeed, Crete was invaded from the North by the Myceneans and the Dorians in prehistoric or early historic times. These were Greek tribes which, together with the Minoans and other prehistoric inhabitants of the island, shaped the genetic structure of the Cretan population... Since Crete, Sicily, and Cyprus have been colonized by Greeks in prehistoric or historic times, we investigated whether Sicily and Cyprus also shared higher IBD with European populations; indeed, they both do (Tables S9–S10). A possible interpretation of the IBD results is that they reveal the ancient Greek ancestry of the populations of the three islands. Another interpretation is that the IBD results in the three islands reflect unrelated historical events: the IBD sharing between Sicily and Northern/Eastern Europe may reflect the century-long occupation of medieval Sicily by the Normans, even though there is no record of extensive Norman settlement in Sicily (Burry, 1963). The IBD sharing between Cyprus and Northern/Eastern Europeans could be explained if, as a result of the expansion in Asia Minor of Turkish states in 12th–13th centuries C.E., Byzantine populations, which included Scythians and Slavs, migrated to Cyprus."

    However, I must stress that there is no record from an archaeological point of view of Slav settlement in Cyprus, and Professor Georgacas rejected this from supposed linguistic evidence in a 1950 paper. Arvanites, on the other hand, are thought to have arrived under the Venetians in the 16th century, if not before. It seems unlikely that Cyprus' Latin rulers would have welcomed Orthodox Christian refugees in the 12th-13th centuries, including Hellenized Slavs, when they were already trying to suppress and subjugate the local Orthodox church.

    My own impression is that, like the findings of the current research about Crete, the Venetians did not leave an appreciable genetic imprint in Cyprus. But one wonders whether the long period of Lusignan rule, from the 12th to the 15th centuries, may have left a western or northern European imprint, like the Normans in Sicily (they are actually related dynasties). This could explain the IBD sharing observed by the paper. In other words, perhaps their presence in Cyprus was more than the recently reported 'transient pulse' witnessed in the Levant. But the answer may well lie in earlier Greek migrations to Cyprus during the Byzantine era, when the empire was under pressure from both Arabs and Slavs. These Greek migrants would have had a Dorian component, previously absent from the Cypriot gene pool.


    But as Erik correctly underlines: "The East Mediterranean Continuum strikes again in all it's glory"
    Last edited by Andrewid; 06-14-2019 at 12:07 AM.

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  3. #5782
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    So back in November, I've ordered a Whole Genome Sequencing kit from DanteLabs.

    After many months, finally got their reports and source data (FASTAQ files).

    I've uploaded my FASTAQ file to YFull and also in the process of getting a deeper analysis of my mtDNA.

    In any case, was also able to extract a hg19 BAM file from that, using WGSExtract (which is a GUI automated front for samtools and 23extract), I was able to create a 23andMe V3 like raw data file to upload to GEDmatch.

    One of the things that really got me curious, is if I'm going to get better distances or maybe totally screwed up data. I trust 23andMe or FTDNA etc., but they are kind of blackbox in terms of the files that we get from them. I wanted to see what would be the results from a whole genome sequencing, not targeted at finding ancestry to begin with.

    Also, as expected, I got more SNPs than my 23andMe v5 kit (almost twice as much SNPs). I did use dna.land in the past to migrate my v5 to v3 kit using DNA Studio with imputation, but again, that was black box and basically estimated the missing SNPs rather than actually reading them as in the case of the process I did with my WGS BAM file.

    Just to compare:

    23andMe v5 kit:

    Usable SNPS is 491158.
    Usable SNPS(slim) is 391597.

    DanteLabs WGS 23andMe v3-like kit:

    Usable SNPS is 889256.
    Usable SNPS(slim) is 615166.

    In any case, these are my K13 and K36 results and similarity map. I actually got better distance with Ashkenazi Jews, as well as for the first time Italian Jewish is second, while in both the imputed kit I used and the original 23andMe v5 kit I used gave me East_Sicilian second to Ashkenazi:

    Eurogenes K13:

     
    Single Population Sharing:


    # Population (source) Distance
    1 Ashkenazi 4.93
    2 Italian_Jewish 9.62
    3 East_Sicilian 10.02
    4 Algerian_Jewish 10.52
    5 Central_Greek 10.65
    6 South_Italian 10.77
    7 Sephardic_Jewish 11.23
    8 West_Sicilian 12.07
    9 Tunisian_Jewish 13.01
    10 Italian_Abruzzo 13.18
    11 Greek_Thessaly 13.18
    12 Libyan_Jewish 13.88
    13 Cyprian 15.74
    14 Tuscan 17.22
    15 Lebanese_Muslim 19.37
    16 Bulgarian 20.24
    17 Lebanese_Druze 20.29
    18 Samaritan 20.81
    19 Syrian 20.87
    20 Palestinian 21.49


    Mixed Mode Population Sharing:


    # Primary Population (source) Secondary Population (source) Distance
    1 94.4% Ashkenazi + 5.6% Lebanese_Druze @ 4.79
    2 97.9% Ashkenazi + 2.1% Lebanese_Christian @ 4.91
    3 99.5% Ashkenazi + 0.5% Cyprian @ 4.93
    4 99.7% Ashkenazi + 0.3% Samaritan @ 4.93
    5 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Yemenite_Jewish @ 4.93
    6 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Abhkasian @ 4.93
    7 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Adygei @ 4.93
    8 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Afghan_Pashtun @ 4.93
    9 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Afghan_Tadjik @ 4.93
    10 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Afghan_Turkmen @ 4.93
    11 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Aghan_Hazara @ 4.93
    12 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Algerian @ 4.93
    13 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Algerian_Jewish @ 4.93
    14 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Altaian @ 4.93
    15 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Armenian @ 4.93
    16 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Assyrian @ 4.93
    17 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Austrian @ 4.93
    18 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Austroasiatic_Ho @ 4.93
    19 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Azeri @ 4.93
    20 100% Ashkenazi + 0% Balkar @ 4.93


    Eurogenes K36:

     
    Amerindian -
    Arabian 4.77 Pct
    Armenian 6.27 Pct
    Basque -
    Central_African -
    Central_Euro 0.13 Pct
    East_African -
    East_Asian -
    East_Balkan 3.79 Pct
    East_Central_Asian -
    East_Central_Euro 5.35 Pct
    East_Med 18.20 Pct
    Eastern_Euro 3.58 Pct
    Fennoscandian -
    French 5.05 Pct
    Iberian 9.96 Pct
    Indo-Chinese 0.07 Pct
    Italian 14.79 Pct
    Malayan -
    Near_Eastern 9.75 Pct
    North_African 2.75 Pct
    North_Atlantic 0.88 Pct
    North_Caucasian 6.54 Pct
    North_Sea 2.99 Pct
    Northeast_African -
    Oceanian -
    Omotic -
    Pygmy -
    Siberian -
    South_Asian -
    South_Central_Asian -
    South_Chinese 0.29 Pct
    Volga-Ural -
    West_African -
    West_Caucasian 0.61 Pct
    West_Med 4.23 Pct


    Similarity map:


    In my original 23andMe v5-based k36 similarity map, I got highest similarity with Crete and Calabria, the rest were orange. This time, I get much wider coverage:

     


    In any case, my point is, that other than the further uniparental information I'm going to get and my own WGS BAM file to play with, it was nice to see that even doing it by myself from a non-ancestry specified service, gave me at the end even better results than one of the big companies.
    Check out my Hidden Content
    My Y-DNA: Q-M242 -> Q-L232 -> Q-L275 -> Q-M378 -> Q-Y2016 -> Q-L245 -> Q-FGC1904 -> Q-Y2209 -> Q-Y2225 -> Q-Y2197 -> Q-Y2750 -> Q-YP1004 -> Q-YP3924;
    My mtDNA: K1a1b1a;

    My dad's mtDNA: K2a2a;

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  5. #5783
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    Quote Originally Posted by Claudio View Post
    Italian Jewish kits are now blocked on Gedmatch
    Maybe it was something I said
    Nope, they were temporarily taken down because the same samples with better SNP coverage had become available, and will be uploaded soon instead of these.

    The Romaniote samples were done using FTDNA.
    Check out my Hidden Content
    My Y-DNA: Q-M242 -> Q-L232 -> Q-L275 -> Q-M378 -> Q-Y2016 -> Q-L245 -> Q-FGC1904 -> Q-Y2209 -> Q-Y2225 -> Q-Y2197 -> Q-Y2750 -> Q-YP1004 -> Q-YP3924;
    My mtDNA: K1a1b1a;

    My dad's mtDNA: K2a2a;

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  7. #5784
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erikl86 View Post
    Nope, they were temporarily taken down because the same samples with better SNP coverage had become available, and will be uploaded soon instead of these.

    The Romaniote samples were done using FTDNA.
    Outstanding News

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  9. #5785
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    9:42 onwards is kind of weird to watch and amusing to me as I've never seen a Jew express that he is a Greek convert. I credit him on his curiosity about his own origins, but I disagree with his denial of there likely being a Judean origin. He suggests Moroccan Jews are in order of importance Greeks, Berber/Phoenicians and Iberians. I don't necessarily think he is dead wrong about everything either.

    Last edited by Seabass; 06-17-2019 at 02:33 PM.

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  11. #5786
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seabass View Post
    9:42 onwards is kind of weird to watch and amusing to me as I've never seen a Jew express that he is a Greek convert. I credit him on his curiosity about his own origins, but I disagree with his denial of there likely being a Judean origin. He suggests Moroccan Jews are in order of importance Greeks, Berber/Phoenicians and Iberians. I don't necessarily think he is dead wrong about everything either.

    Fascinating stuff. Thanks for bringing it to our attention. Ethnic identity is such a fragile subject for many and I loved the fact that many expressed the view that they have never really thought about challenging their own identity. I swear that the last guy claiming to originate from Greek converts must be a forum member. I just haven't worked out who yet

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  13. #5787
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seabass View Post
    9:42 onwards is kind of weird to watch and amusing to me as I've never seen a Jew express that he is a Greek convert. I credit him on his curiosity about his own origins, but I disagree with his denial of there likely being a Judean origin. He suggests Moroccan Jews are in order of importance Greeks, Berber/Phoenicians and Iberians. I don't necessarily think he is dead wrong about everything either.

    These guys sound more confused than anything else, it's safe to say their exposure to the genetic data is very superficial to say the least. The sheer amount of similarity between all Western Jewish groups (who as a whole can be described as a single population emanating from a single source with minimal regional variation in the form of local admixture) basically precludes the kind of outlandish theories they are talking about. The wholesale denial of the predominance of typically Levantine (very likely to be Judean for the most part) markers on the paternal line is simply incorrect. Of course they might not be entirely wrong, I for one suspect that the Toshavim make up a much more substantial amount of the Tunisian and Libyan Jews' ancestors, and that their presence could initially date back to pre-Roman times in North Africa.

    Also, several years ago I had a private conversation with Corey on the issue of genetic studies and Jewish origins. So he is quite aware of some of the stuff we are talking about here, but for some reason (I suspect personal political bias) he decided to overlook this and made an entire series on the "ethnicities of Israel" where he basically ignored not only the genetic data but also much of the more conventional definitions of Jewish ethnicity, going as far as to portray Polish and German Jews as separate "ethnicities". So I've grown quite weary of his intentions to be honest.

    That being said I am aware of some Sephardic Jews who identify as Greek. My father for instance had a close Egyptian Jewish friend (who died in tragic circumstances) whose family would claim to be of "Greek" (not Romaniote for that matter) origin, however this could be due to the ties between the Greek and Jewish diasporas in Egypt before his family was kicked out of the country.
    Last edited by Agamemnon; 06-18-2019 at 12:06 AM.
    ᾽Άλλο δέ τοι ἐρέω, σὺ δ᾽ ἐνὶ φρεσὶ βάλλεο σῇσιν:
    κρύβδην, μηδ᾽ ἀναφανδά, φίλην ἐς πατρίδα γαῖαν
    νῆα κατισχέμεναι: ἐπεὶ οὐκέτι πιστὰ γυναιξίν.


    -Αγαμέμνων; H Οδύσσεια, Ραψωδία λ

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  15. #5788
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agamemnon View Post

    That being said I am aware of some Sephardic Jews who identify as Greek. My father for instance had a close Egyptian Jewish friend (who died in tragic circumstances) whose family would claim to be of "Greek" (not Romaniote for that matter) origin, however this could be due to the ties between the Greek and Jewish diasporas in Egypt before his family was kicked out of the country.
    And kicked out at the same time! I have a delightful Sephardi Greek family living opposite me. I would love to ask some questions, fishing for an indication of their own ideas relating to their ancestral origins. But it's about a correct phrasing which doesn't cause offence, or a phrasing which does not create a confirmation bias where you are kind of prompting a particular response. What I find interesting is not only ancestry based on concrete genetic evidence, but the perception of any particular group.
    Last edited by Andrewid; 06-18-2019 at 12:50 PM.

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  17. #5789
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    Obviously we should probably await the re-uploading of the Italki samples to Gedmatch before diving into this subject once more,but this came to mind for a more recent relationship between Ashkenazim,Italkim,Romaniote’s.

    First of all I just want to make it clear that I don’t doubt that all three populations Owe the bulk of there ancestry to a shared older population of Roman Italkim and Greek Romaniote’s more distant than being detectable through IBD.

    But regarding more recent relationship through IBD for all three communities this information came to mind:
    D0565EA3-62F5-4879-8D39-70A3A70EE8FC.jpeg
    So regarding Italkim and Romaniote’s If I’m not mistaken Epirus as highlighted is the region where the Ioannina Romaniote Jewish community hails from.
    It’s been shown on this thread that Eastern & Western Ashkenazim are Genetically the same due to back migrations but still you would imagine Western Ashkenazim from a geographical proximity are probably more likely statistically over the centuries to have received periodic more recent Italian Jewish Admixture especially when populations were temporarily back in Italy.
    That being said if Ashkenazim of Poland,Lithuania have received Italian Jewish Admixture 14th-16th Centuries would this not coincide with the time frame that Ashkenazi communities were recovering from bottleneck and really started expanding again and ultimately experienced a large population growth whilst at the same time still practicing endogamy?
    Would not this preserve and spread this potential Italian Jewish Admixture?
    Resulting in an inaccurate MRCA on Gedmatch regarding the modern MRCA on One-to-One regarding shared segments between modern Italkim and Ashkenazim?
    Last edited by Claudio; 06-18-2019 at 02:21 PM.

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  19. #5790
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agamemnon View Post
    Also, several years ago I had a private conversation with Corey on the issue of genetic studies and Jewish origins. So he is quite aware of some of the stuff we are talking about here, but for some reason (I suspect personal political bias) he decided to overlook this and made an entire series on the "ethnicities of Israel" where he basically ignored not only the genetic data but also much of the more conventional definitions of Jewish ethnicity, going as far as to portray Polish and German Jews as separate "ethnicities". So I've grown quite weary of his intentions to be honest.
    He is still obviously Zionist to me and even though he attempts to level with all minorities and communities in Israel, you can tell he is defensive towards the responses sometimes after relaying questions of the international community to Palestinians. I don't think he insinuates that Jews are genetically very different at a country of origin level, or at least I havn't noticed that, could be missing something. I do like his segments on the diasporic Jewish communities even though he ends up also asking younger generation mixed Israeli's about a fraction of said ancestry of interest. If anything, it demonstrates how much more intact their common Jewish heritage now is, so IMO does more good than bad to a Zionist cause by humanising Israeli's to the broad world. Unfortunately some of the brainwashed world couldn't possibly picture Israeli's/Jews besides nasty caricatures of them in kids cartoons. Sorry to detract from the topic of this thread a bit.

    That being said I am aware of some Sephardic Jews who identify as Greek. My father for instance had a close Egyptian Jewish friend (who died in tragic circumstances) whose family would claim to be of "Greek" (not Romaniote for that matter) origin, however this could be due to the ties between the Greek and Jewish diasporas in Egypt before his family was kicked out of the country.
    Never heard of a case like that but I'm sure some might. Was this friend Sephardic Alexandrian or Mizrahi/Mustarabim from Cairo? You could find a pretty big difference between these two groups in how they see themselves for sure, but Greek is strange and sounds like an opinion from maybe a minority of non-Sephardic Egyptian Jews.

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