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Thread: Faces of Three Ancient Egyptians Brought to Life Using 2,000-Year-Old DNA

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    @Keneki20

    None of your excerpts support a massive migration from the Levant. The oldest non-controversial dates for domesticated cattle is around 5700 BC found in El Barga after the 3rd Cataract in Nubia. Controversial dates put them at 8000 BC in Nabta Playa for wild cattle undergoing domestication. Most of your excerpts deal with neolithic sites in Lower Egypt, which is well-known as being influenced by Levant migration. Upper Egypt and Nubia have no such evidence.

    Goats from the Middle East and likely indigenous African cattle were incorporated into hunter gatherer ways of life that bore no resemblance to the Middle East. Up to this day, there are Nilotic herders in Africa who don't know how to farm. The idea that such people represent an influx of Levantine farmers during the neolithic is beyond far-fetched. If so, their farming systems and crops would resemble the Middle East more.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mansamusa View Post
    @Keneki20

    None of your excerpts support a massive migration from the Levant. The oldest non-controversial dates for domesticated cattle is around 5700 BC found in El Barga after the 3rd Cataract in Nubia. Controversial dates put them at 8000 BC in Nabta Playa for wild cattle undergoing domestication. Most of your excerpts deal with neolithic sites in Lower Egypt, which is well-known as being influenced by Levant migration. Upper Egypt and Nubia have no such evidence.

    Goats from the Middle East and likely indigenous African cattle were incorporated into hunter gatherer ways of life that bore no resemblance to the Middle East. Up to this day, there are Nilotic herders in Africa who don't know how to farm. The idea that such people represent an influx of Levantine farmers during the neolithic is beyond far-fetched. If so, their farming systems and crops would resemble the Middle East more.
    My first quote stated that Neolithic Levantine peoples arrived in the Lower Nile Valley, but that their presence didn't represent colonization. So it cannot be seen as a massive migration, per se. But it's not like I ever suggested that this was like colonization anyway. Nevertheless, I think the DNA evidence speaks for itself. How else does one reasonably explain significant Neolithic Levantine ancestry in the region if there weren't at least a significant presence of them during the Neolithic? That is far from far-fetched. Also, the rest of my quotes demonstrate pretty much what you're saying, especially my second to last one, since that focuses on Upper Egypt (although, I might add that it sees some degree of transition in the Upper Egyptian phenomenon in spite of the old ways persisting. Upper Egypt did not exist in a vacuum). So, I'm not too sure where a massive point of divergence is. Additionally, using Nilotic herders as an example is not especially useful here. By comparison, the PPNB is often seen as uniformly farming and herding in nature, but, in fact, some PPNB peoples appear to have engaged primarily in hunting and gathering in the Negev and Sinai. Despite their difference in lifestyle, they are still treated as part of the broader PPNB culture.

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  5. #183
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    @Keneki, Please read this post to help answer your question as to why Levant Neolithic type ancestry in Africa should not be treated as an actual migration from the Levant.

    Quote Originally Posted by leorcooper19 View Post
    Assuming a Hyksos-AE narrative, I estimated that the ancient Egyptians we have available to us all have around 70% Hyksos-like (proxied by Shadud_MLBA) and 30% Neolithic Egyptian-like (proxied by Natufian and Taforalt). I found no need for Dinka-like or Kenyan Pastoral_N-like for them, but I found that Taforalt was needed. Note the pretty consistent scores across the four individuals; I would be shocked if this wasn't the standard Egyptian profile of the era.

     
    Target Distance Levant_Natufian Levant_Shadud_MLBA
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.03947624 38.6 61.4
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.06166188 39.4 60.6
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.05184928 35.8 64.2
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.03562187 36.2 63.8
    Average 0.04715232 37.5 62.5

    Target Distance Dinka Levant_Natufian Levant_Shadud_MLBA
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.03318529 3.4 32.8 63.8
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.05900218 2.8 34.6 62.6
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.04913211 2.6 31.4 66.0
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.03457619 1.4 33.8 64.8
    Average 0.04397394 2.5 33.1 64.3

    Target Distance Dinka Levant_Natufian Levant_Shadud_MLBA MAR_Taforalt
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.02902443 1.4 23.0 68.8 6.8
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.05711875 0.0 24.2 68.0 7.8
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.04500267 0.0 19.2 72.2 8.6
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.02702428 0.0 21.0 71.2 7.8
    Average 0.03954253 0.4 21.8 70.0 7.8

    Target Distance Levant_Natufian Levant_Shadud_MLBA MAR_Taforalt
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.02979495 22.0 69.4 8.6
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.05711875 24.2 68.0 7.8
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.04500267 19.2 72.2 8.6
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.02702428 21.0 71.2 7.8
    Average 0.03973516 21.6 70.2 8.2

    Target Distance KEN_Early_Pastoral_N Levant_Natufian Levant_Shadud_MLBA MAR_Taforalt
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.02822956 4.2 21.0 68.6 6.2
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.05652042 3.6 23.6 67.2 5.6
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.04468149 2.4 18.6 71.8 7.2
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.02702428 0.0 21.0 71.2 7.8
    Average 0.03911394 2.6 21.0 69.7 6.7

    Target Distance KEN_Pastoral_N Levant_Natufian Levant_Shadud_MLBA MAR_Taforalt
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.02826186 3.4 21.6 68.8 6.2
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.05663496 2.6 24.4 67.2 5.8
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.04478334 1.6 19.2 71.8 7.4
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.02702428 0.0 21.0 71.2 7.8
    Average 0.03917611 1.9 21.5 69.8 6.8


    Assuming a mixed Neolithic and/or Chalcolithic Levant-Hyksos-AE narrative, I found that Shadud_MLBA is still preferred as the majority component at around 60%:
    Target Distance IRN_Ganj_Dareh_N Levant_Natufian Levant_PPNB Levant_Shadud_MLBA MAR_Taforalt
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.02941578 0.0 18.4 6.6 66.2 8.8
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.05668014 0.4 18.8 11.0 61.8 8.0
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.04117189 0.0 5.0 25.6 59.8 9.6
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.02563644 3.4 14.0 20.2 55.0 7.4
    Average 0.03822606 1.0 14.1 15.8 60.7 8.5

    That said, the individuals score a bit less consistently in that model relative to the previous ones, although that likely has more to do with having more distal source components and, simply, more components to choose from.

    A few notes as someone who has been reading the thread regularly these last few days:
    1. I think everyone who cares about this topic and about Natufians should start to understand just how imperfect of a proxy Natufians are for many of our relevant questions. Natufians are almost certainly not proto-AAs or the source of most "Natufian-like" ancestry anywhere, whether in the Levant or in North/east Africa. Their Y-chromosomes- E-Z830* if not pre-Z830- are dead ends. There is a need for another NE African group coming into the Levant c. 11kybp (?) to explain Semitic and more derived clades of E-M35. Once we realize that Natufians are simply the best we have right now, we'll be able to get out of the (IMO incorrect) assumption that any Natufian-like ancestry in Africa is from the prehistoric Levant.

    2. The similarity between these ancient Egyptians and ancient Levantines cannot be simplified into the presence of the Natufian-like component in both (which I agree is ultimately NE African). This is for two reasons: one, the ancient Egyptians we have are at most 50% Natufian-like when you include other Neolithic West Asian references:
    Target Distance GEO_CHG IRN_Ganj_Dareh_N Levant_Natufian MAR_Taforalt TUR_Tepecik_Ciftlik_N
    Levant_Beirut_IAIII_Egyptian:SFI-43 0.04216922 6.8 7.4 50.0 3.0 32.8
    EGY_Hellenistic_contam:JK2888 0.06002102 0.0 11.6 45.6 3.4 39.4
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2134 0.04787971 6.0 4.0 42.2 4.4 43.4
    EGY_Late_Period:JK2911 0.03729139 5.0 9.0 48.0 2.2 35.8
    Average 0.04684034 4.5 8.0 46.4 3.3 37.8

    and two, because Hyksos-like Levantines also have Natufian-like as a minority component (though clearly not as high as the AEs):
    Target: Levant_Shadud_MLBA
    Distance: 3.8822% / 0.03882195
    54.0 TUR_Tepecik_Ciftlik_N
    25.4 Levant_Natufian
    12.6 IRN_Ganj_Dareh_N
    8.0 GEO_CHG

    3. I think this discussion would be best served if mention of phenotypes just stopped. Every page of the thread there's at least one post that includes something about them, and none have improved the discussion or our gained knowledge/understanding at all.
    Last edited by Mansamusa; 10-14-2021 at 04:11 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keneki20 View Post
    My first quote stated that Neolithic Levantine peoples arrived in the Lower Nile Valley, but that their presence didn't represent colonization. So it cannot be seen as a massive migration, per se. But it's not like I ever suggested that this was like colonization anyway. Nevertheless, I think the DNA evidence speaks for itself. How else does one reasonably explain significant Neolithic Levantine ancestry in the region if there weren't at least a significant presence of them during the Neolithic? That is far from far-fetched. Also, the rest of my quotes demonstrate pretty much what you're saying, especially my second to last one, since that focuses on Upper Egypt (although, I might add that it sees some degree of transition in the Upper Egyptian phenomenon in spite of the old ways persisting. Upper Egypt did not exist in a vacuum). So, I'm not too sure where a massive point of divergence is. Additionally, using Nilotic herders as an example is not especially useful here. By comparison, the PPNB is often seen as uniformly farming and herding in nature, but, in fact, some PPNB peoples appear to have engaged primarily in hunting and gathering in the Negev and Sinai. Despite their difference in lifestyle, they are still treated as part of the broader PPNB culture.
    Yeah, but Levant Neolithic is a major ancestral component in Somalis, Ethiopians, and many East Africans. How is it possible for a population to be large enough to contribute so much ancestry to such a wide range of people and leave no to little evidence of their material culture in this process?

    The argument is that Natufian-like ancestry in Africa is not from Natufians but is rather an older NE African ancestral population shared between Natufians and Nile Valley inhabitants.
    Last edited by Mansamusa; 10-14-2021 at 04:09 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mansamusa View Post
    Yeah, but Levant Neolithic is a major ancestral component in Somalis, Ethiopians, and many East Africans. How is it possible for a population to be large enough to contribute so much ancestry to such a wide range of people and leave no to little evidence of their material culture in this process?

    The argument is that Natufian-like ancestry in Africa is not from Natufians but is rather an older NE African ancestral population shared between Natufians and Nile Valley inhabitants.
    Natufians are modelled as 88% Dzuzduana, or thereabouts. Levant_N is around 93%. Also, what would explain the presence of Eurasian uniparental lineages in those East Africans?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mnemonics View Post
    Looking at the TMRCA of the shared mtdna between East Africans and various Levantine + North African populations all of the most common Eurasian mtdnas seem to have a TMRCA around the time the Natufians were around or a bit younger. The exclusively East African branches also seem to have a time of formation around the same time.


    R0a2 formed 12700 ybp, TMRCA 10400 ybp

    N1a1a formed >20000 ybp, TMRCA 12300 ybp

    N1a1a3 formed 12300 ybp, TMRCA 10300 ybp

    N1a1a-a formed 12300 ybp, TMRCA 9200 ybp

    N1a1a-a2 formed 12300 ybp, TMRCA 3200 ybp

    N1b2 formed >20000 ybp, TMRCA 12900 ybp

    I formed 18900 ybp, TMRCA 14400 ybp

    K1-a formed 18700 ybp, TMRCA 15800 ybp

    K1a12a formed 13300 ybp, TMRCA 11500 ybp

    HV1a'b'c formed 16200 ybp, TMRCA 14000 ybp

    HV1b1 formed 11500 ybp, TMRCA 4700 ybp

    T2-a formed 12100 ybp, TMRCA 10000 ybp

    M1a formed >20000 ybp, TMRCA 17300 ybp

    M1a1 formed 17300 ybp, TMRCA 10500 ybp

    M1a1b formed 10500 ybp, TMRCA 7200 ybp

    M1a1f formed 10500 ybp, TMRCA 7900 ybp

    M1a1k formed 10500 ybp, TMRCA 8400 ybp

    U6a2a formed 15100 ybp, TMRCA 10700 ybp

    U6d2 formed 12900 ybp, TMRCA 3300 ybp

    U9a formed 18800 ybp, TMRCA 13000 ybp

    The specific Natufian E-Z830 samples we have right now maybe dead ends but E-Z830 derived lineages seem to be the most common E lineage in Pastoral Neolithic populations. We don't have many African E-V1515 samples in Yfull but they also have a TMRCA (12500 ybp) roughly around the time the Natufians lived.
    Now, this is a very important point. I will admit that.

    I have always thought that the most powerful arguments for the ingress of Levantine ancestry to NE Africa is th mtDNA results of current and limited ancient remains we have now. And this timing you just enumerated here (if we are to take them literally) makes it even morr significant.

    We await morr results from the region. And am sure we will get some soon

    Thànks again

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    Quote Originally Posted by beyoku View Post
    Do you think that Natufians have cranial and post cranial metric and non metric affinities with Jebel Sahabans, Wadi Halfans, Tushkans and West Africans? And again your are tying this affinity together based on how a skeleton was situated?
    It is amazing and bewildering at the same time what the poster you quoted wanted to drive at with his comment. Just amazing!!

    This is why i have always said that you have to consider and familarize yourself with different lines of evidence such as arcaheology for instance if you are to get your head around this issue. A total reliance in such a limited line of inquiry(Genetics) by some persons is the reason for the rather astonishing conclusions drawn often times. Conclusions drawn by the way with "confidence".

    Lolz
    Last edited by taharqa; 10-14-2021 at 06:14 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keneki20 View Post
    I don't treat their having Neolithic Levantine ancestry equivalent to the notion of Neolithic in that part of the continent simply being an unadulterated extension of the Levantine Neolithic. Neolithic Levantine imports, as far as I can tell, were very important, but it's still an imperfect overlap. That's to say, I believe the reality is more involved.

    Niroyuki Shirai in The diffusion of material culture and domesticates from the Levant to Egypt said the following:




    That first quote is quite significant. But to move on, it’s simple for one to think pre-existing Lower Nile Valley inhabitants were simply overrun and absorbed into the incoming peoples, and that the known linguistic tapestry of North Africa reflects that, but the truth seems more complex than that. From here, to spare myself from typing paraphrased information, I’ll just be posting relevant quotes from my notes. A source I have states the following:

    * The Global Prehistory of Human Migration



    Another source I have says the following:

    * The diffusion of material culture and domesticates from the Levant to Egypt


    And lastly, I have a few more salient sources:

    * New Archaeozoological Data from the Fayum “Neolithic” with a Critical Assessment of the Evidence for Early Stock Keeping in Egypt



    * New Archaeozoological Data from the Fayum “Neolithic” with a Critical Assessment of the Evidence for Early Stock Keeping in Egypt


    * An Introduction to the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt



    So the information in the sources I’ve linked seems to indicate that the pre-existing foraging population, while adopting agricultural methods from neighboring Levantine peoples, must have kept many their practices alive, while also intermixing with incoming migrants. Even with the possibility of incoming migrants, that doesn’t seem to mean they were original culture(s) and language(s) were necessarily subsumed. So, there was continuity of the broader preceding population. The transition was strongest and sharpest in lowermost Egypt, but then farther south in Egypt and farther from the Nile, the transition appears to have been much more gradual. I trust that those coming directly from the Neolithic Levant brought their language(s) with them, but I personally don't think the language(s) they brought eventually survived, and, at least for the (Proto-)Egyptian language, I don't think that can be tied to these incoming Neolithic Levantine peoples, even though we see a strong signature of admixture with them reflected in Egyptians' DNA. But there's a bit more below.

    * An Introduction to the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt



    What I've understood this all to mean is that the pre-existing populations of Lower Nile Valley experienced a significant infusion of ancestry from the Neolithic Levant, but the incoming population was eventually absorbed into the various populations already in existence there, and it cannot be seen as akin to the migration that brought Anatolian farmers to Europe. Considering the Neolithic coincides with the appearance/development of farming and pastoral practices, one would expect a large overlap in agricultural and pastoral lexicon between, for example, speakers of various Afro-Asiatic branches, who, at the time, must have been more heavily concentrated in Northeast Africa. But that lexical overlap is virtually absent.

    Additionally, TuaMan provided some very interesting information about the Neolithic last year in a few correspondences I had with him.
    Archaeology! Archaeology!!

    I love this.

    Of course, there are also the evidences of the south (and from the South) i.e the eastern sahara in the story of those early societies of the Nile Valley
    Last edited by taharqa; 10-14-2021 at 06:12 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nebuchadnezzar II View Post
    Natufians are modelled as 88% Dzudzuana, or thereabouts. Levant_N is around 93%. Also, what would explain the presence of Eurasian uniparental lineages in those East Africans?
    Dzudzuana is more than 10,000 years older than Natufians. Do you genuinely believe that there is a direct ancestral relationship between Dzudzuana and Natufians?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mansamusa View Post
    @Keneki, Please read this post to help answer your question as to why Levant Neolithic type ancestry in Africa should not be treated as an actual migration from the Levant.
    Just to be clear, I actually disagree with "Levant Neolithic type ancestry in Africa should not be treated as an actual migration from the Levant" as a takeaway from my post. What I showed was that Natufian-like admixture cannot and should not be thought of as uniquely Levantine. My models actually demonstrated a huge Levant_N component among the ancient Egyptian individuals, the only issue is we don't know how much is Neolithic vs Chalcolithic vs EBA vs MBA vs LBA vs IA. Only earlier samples can tell us that for sure. I believe- based on the ratios of more distal components like Tepecik, CHG, and Ganj Gareh_N- that this true Levantine ancestry is mostly from the BA, though I am definitely not convinced it is exclusive to the BA. Conversely, I actually think there's a decent chance 12.5-25% of their ancestry could be Levant_N not even including BA Levant, and thus would have been present since the Old Kingdom at least.
     
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