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Thread: E-M123/M34 in Africa: what we don't know

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    E-M123/M34 in Africa: what we don't know

    Before aDNA studies and deep Y-haplogroup phylogenies, the conventional wisdom that E-M123 and its immediate descendant E-M34 were of East/Northeast African origin, supported by its relatively high frequencies across different ethnolinguistic groupings in Ethiopia. So from the beginning, the conversation about E-M123/E-M34 has naturally been inseparable from the origins of AA debate, but that's not the subject of this post.

    At this point, we know a fair deal about the substructure of E-M34, even if we aren't at the point of making subclade pie charts by population, like the R1b folks. Most E-M34 in most parts of Europe and West Asia is E-M84 (TMRCA: 7800 ybp, with some evidence of star structure); the rest falls under E-Z841, whose major sub-grouping, E-L791, is relatively young (TMRCA: 5500 ybp). Since we have evidence of E-M34 in the Neolithic Levant, and of E-M84 specifically in the same neighborhood by the Chalcholithic, it stands to reason that the Levant is the fount of these lines in Europeóbut how it got there is still unresolved (particularly in the case of E-L791, given its later date).

    But: right now, there is no easily accessible information about where all that African E-M34 fits into the picture! One Egyptian and one Algerian fall on E-M84's various branches in YFull, and the FTDNA Haplotree includes Egyptians and a Sudanese who haven't tested positive for any downstream markersóbut literally not a single Ethiopian. Maybe I haven't been looking in the right places, so I'd love some guidance from someone better-versed in Horner Y-DNA.

    Without knowledge of where Northeast and East African E-M123/M34 fit into the haplogroup's structure, there's nothing we can say about how it relates to the fact of Natufian E-Z830, or to the deep (but not exclusively) East/Southeast African presence of E-V1515.

    Can someone offer any insights? Right now there are more E-M34 Irish people on the tree than North+East Africans!
    The clock indicates the momentóbut what does eternity indicate?

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