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

  1. #6991
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    Quote Originally Posted by Claudio View Post
    Whatever happened to getting the DNA results of those 12th Century Jewish bodies found at the bottom of that Well in Norwich?
    Tom Booth responded recently to an inquiry I did on the matter, saying it's in the work, and won't be coming out soon :-( . They are testing a new method to perhaps getting better results from the remains, so at least that's encouraging.
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  3. #6992
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    Quote Originally Posted by StillWater View Post
    From what I can tell, if you take away my post early-antiquity admixture, I end up being a Mesopotamian/West Asian shifted Cypriot, if anything.

    Randwulf was kind enough to run me through his algo within G25 (using gradient descent etc) with Jewish references removed:

    distance%: 0.21

    Lebanese_Christian 24.5
    Maltese 11.6
    Kurdish 9.27
    Greek_Trabzon 9.11
    Sardinian 8.68
    Samaritan 8.64
    Greek 8.35
    Spanish_Valencia 8.28
    French 6.77
    Indonesian_Java 3.17
    Moroccan_North 1.64

    Although, to be fair, G25 makes me less North African relative to other Ashkenazim, whereas on everything else I am more North African than other Ashkenazim. However, I don't think the discrepancy is large enough to overwhelm the Mesopotamian/West Asian shift.
    My results are pretty different

    distance%: 0.37

    French 12.45
    Turkish_Adana 11.59
    Syrian 11.44
    Dutch 10.65
    Berber_Tunisia_Chen 9.07
    Lebanese_Druze 8.24
    Samaritan 8.07
    Algerian 7.63
    Albanian 7.23
    Iranian_Zoroastrian 6.75
    Greek 3.12
    Brahmin_Uttar_Pradesh 2.34
    Belgian 1.41

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  5. #6993
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonahst View Post
    My results are pretty different

    distance%: 0.37

    French 12.45
    Turkish_Adana 11.59
    Syrian 11.44
    Dutch 10.65
    Berber_Tunisia_Chen 9.07
    Lebanese_Druze 8.24
    Samaritan 8.07
    Algerian 7.63
    Albanian 7.23
    Iranian_Zoroastrian 6.75
    Greek 3.12
    Brahmin_Uttar_Pradesh 2.34
    Belgian 1.41
    Your European is almost entirely different. And you're much more North African. We're probably seeing balancing of sub-modern population components (north vs south etc) in both of our cases and hence the wide disparity across the board. However, we've noted before that you're more North African than I am in G25.
    Last edited by StillWater; 08-14-2019 at 11:26 AM.
    הִנְנִי֩ מֵבִ֨יא אוֹתָ֜ם מֵאֶ֣רֶץ צָפ֗וֹן

    Jeremiah 31

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  7. #6994
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erikl86 View Post
    Actually, it isn't a stretch at all, and both you and Claudio are partially correct of your analysis of יוסף בן מתתיהו, aka Flavius Josephus.

    According to his own testimonials, he was a Cohen , and not just any Cohen, but a descendant of Cohens from the first משמר mishmar, the priestly divisions, of priests in the Jerusalem Temple. On his mother's side, he descend from the Hasmoneans. And while his credibility as an historical source is sometimes dubious considering him flipping sides during the Great Revolt, his ancestral heritage is actually something scholars take him as accurate (especially because of the way he describes his line, such as referring to one of his paternal ancestors as "the stutterer" which is something a person seeking mythological prestigious ancestry wouldn't do).

    He was also a Pharisee, not an Hellenist, and seem to have been a practicing Jew which did his best to abide to the Jewish laws, and he specifically praises, even in one of his latest works when was already a Flavian for decades living in Rome - "The Life of Flavius Josephus" - the righteousness of the Pharisee sages he went to Rome to give supporting testimony for back when he was merely 26 (he mentions favorably in his work how they ate only nuts on their voyage to Rome to avoid eating non-Kosher food).

    In my opinion, there's also sufficient information in his own testimonials to believe that before he switched sides, he also belonged to the pro-Zealot faction among Jews, despite his apparent never ending criticism of them in his (obviously biased, pro-Roman) works. The reason for this is his deep intimacy with the structure and leaders of all the members of the Zealots factions, as well as the fact that he was nominated by them to be the high commander of all armed forces of the Galilee during the Revolt in spite the fact he had no apparent military experience.

    As for his wives - while they were Jewish, nothing is said about their ethnic origin - and his wives from Alexandria and Crete could have been admixed , while still fully Jewish.



    Josephus was argued and accused of being a traitor (and rightly so) by contemporary Jews of his own time - he himself attest to that that they saw him as a traitor, and even managed to physically attack him when he acted as a negotiator between the Romans and Zealots on behalf of the Romans during the siege of Jerusalem.
    While he was initially captured/surrendered (depends on which narrative you believe) as a POW, he then switched sides and de-facto was a traitor to his people. It's not just a narrative.
    I understood that the wives may have been mixed when I posted. The point was that Josephus didn't convert any women. However, I forgot that he was a Cohen and should therefore withdraw my point. Cohenim cannot marry converts. We don't know how much Josephus' observance factored into him not marrying converts. However, I don't think Vespasian decided to play matchmaker. Josephus would've expressed his needs to Vespasian. The first wife was a Judean captive. It's fair to say that she probably wasn't mixed. If Vespasian fetched her for Josephus, it might imply that the Mediterranean diaspora was fairly empty at the time. And if it was largely empty, then it means that admixture from those areas was largely absent at that time.
    Last edited by StillWater; 08-14-2019 at 11:28 AM.
    הִנְנִי֩ מֵבִ֨יא אוֹתָ֜ם מֵאֶ֣רֶץ צָפ֗וֹן

    Jeremiah 31

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  9. #6995
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    AncestryDNA results of a Mizrachi+Eastern Sephardi (don't know the proportions): https://www.reddit.com/r/AncestryDNA...out_right_the/
    הִנְנִי֩ מֵבִ֨יא אוֹתָ֜ם מֵאֶ֣רֶץ צָפ֗וֹן

    Jeremiah 31

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  11. #6996
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    Quote Originally Posted by StillWater View Post
    I understood that the wives may have been mixed when I posted. The point was that Josephus didn't convert any women. However, I forgot that he was a Cohen and should therefore withdraw my point. Cohenim cannot marry converts. We don't know how much Josephus' observance factored into him not marrying converts. However, I don't think Vespasian decided to play matchmaker. Josephus would've expressed his needs to Vespasian. The first wife was a Judean captive. It's fair to say that she probably wasn't mixed. If Vespasian fetched her for Josephus, it might imply that the Mediterranean diaspora was fairly empty at the time. And if it was largely empty, then it means that admixture from those areas was largely absent at that time.
    I doubt it would imply the Mediterranean diaspora was empty at that time.
    If we look at the map of Jewish diaspora communities outside Judea in 1st Century AD they span Italy,Greece,Anatolia the whole Levant,Egypt and the remaining coasts of North Africa. If anything it more than likely implies the opposite as in that Josephus being an actual native Levantine Judean wanted a native Levantine Judean wife and may be an indication that in his mind he was of the opinion the Hellenistic communities outside of Judea to his eyes were not proper Judean being partial convert communities.
    This is even more likely when you factor in his own documented opinion regarding the scale of Roman Empire converts to Judaism.
    I mean look at it this way he was a Cohen and a Native Judean with ancestry going back to Jewish Royalty so he probably had a huge Ego,and from an ancestral point of view it would not surprise me if he felt in some way superior to non native Judean Jews living outside of Judea who surrounded him.

    A bit like how Stillwater feels with his above Average West Asian Admixture and his extra immortal Mizrahi ancestry
    Last edited by Claudio; 08-14-2019 at 02:17 PM.

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  13. #6997
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sikeliot View Post
    So if Ashkenazim have southern Italian ancestry how do we know how much of their "Levantine" ancestry is truly ancient Hebrew, rather than being Phoenician or Punic inherited from southern Italian and Sicilian ancestors?
    It is not an 'either or' issue. Some Israelites were closer to Phoenicia (Gulf of Haifa) than others (Judea). The boundaries between the two areas have changed significantly and there were no major boundaries during the Neolithic and Canaanite eras.

    The reverse can also be true. Some Lebanese may have Israelite origins. As the Old Testament notes, there were Jews in the Phoenician explorations.


    The boundary between Phoenicia and Israel was religious not genetic
    Last edited by josh w.; 08-14-2019 at 02:40 PM.

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  15. #6998
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    Quote Originally Posted by StillWater View Post
    I understood that the wives may have been mixed when I posted. The point was that Josephus didn't convert any women. However, I forgot that he was a Cohen and should therefore withdraw my point. Cohenim cannot marry converts. We don't know how much Josephus' observance factored into him not marrying converts. However, I don't think Vespasian decided to play matchmaker. Josephus would've expressed his needs to Vespasian. The first wife was a Judean captive. It's fair to say that she probably wasn't mixed. If Vespasian fetched her for Josephus, it might imply that the Mediterranean diaspora was fairly empty at the time. And if it was largely empty, then it means that admixture from those areas was largely absent at that time.
    As Claudio said, there was an extensive diaspora outside of Judea.

    And as we can see - two of Josephus' wives were diaspora Jews - one was Alexandrian Jew, the other one Cretan Jew. So actually it proves there was a diaspora.

    As for why Josephus married his first wife from the captives of Judea - that was because by that time, he was still in Judea, not in Rome (he was escorting Vespasian to Alexandria, but before and after that he was in Judea, with Titus, until the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem in 70 CE).
    Check out my Hidden Content
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    My mtDNA: K1a1b1a;

    My dad's mtDNA: K2a2a;

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    Quote Originally Posted by StillWater View Post
    Your European is almost entirely different. And you're much more North African. We're probably seeing balancing of sub-modern population components (north vs south etc) in both of our cases and hence the wide disparity across the board. However, we've noted before that you're more North African than I am in G25.
    Yeah, my takeaway is that this should not be read literally. I'm definitely not 17% North African! That would make me almost as NA as a NA Jew. The high NW European is somewhat consistent with other calculators for me, but the low Southern European is bizarre.

    For comparison, this is what a Lebanese Christian (Dewsloth's mom) got:

    distance%: 0.36

    Armenian 14.8
    Greek_Trabzon 13.09
    Cypriot 12.55
    Assyrian 10.63
    Samaritan 10.25
    Tunisian_Jew 8.22
    Sephardic_Jew 6.6
    Lebanese_Christian 6.59
    Druze 5.32
    Italian_Jew 3.79
    Yemenite_Al_Jawf 2.9
    Ethiopian_Tigray 2.54
    Palestinian 2.21
    Biaka 0.51
    Last edited by jonahst; 08-15-2019 at 04:36 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by StillWater View Post
    AncestryDNA results of a Mizrachi+Eastern Sephardi (don't know the proportions): https://www.reddit.com/r/AncestryDNA...out_right_the/
    He says he's half Syrian Jew half Persian Jew.

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