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Thread: Are we getting some consensus on the R1b story?

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    Are we getting some consensus on the R1b story?

    As my first thead on this site I thought I would start with seeing if we are nearing a consensus on the broad possibilities of the R1b story. I dont expect us to agree on details but I would value comment on this summary that I just posted on another site as what I think the range of possibilities are. I would value opinion from those who have a flexible approach which adjust with the new evidence rather than the sort of entrenched positions I see on other sites. Here goes:

    The current hobbiest thinking is that the western Alps are a likely secondary takeoff point because of high variance and L51* and L11* distribution. From there it may have gone west to Iberia (reexpanding as DF27, some stayed put in the Alps and west central Europe as U152 and some headed north through France and the Rhine as L11*, L21: etc. The phylogeny and variance data is clear that L23* and M269* are older and more frequent in the east Balkans, SW Asia etc. There is clealry an older zone of R1b in SW Asia and around the west shore of the Black Sea/Lower Danube. The only problem we have is its terrible vague in detail.

    As for timing. I think it is going against the data trying to push its journey across Eurpope to the west back to the first farmers spread. All the data in terms of ancient DNA, variance etc suggests R1b only really reached the area west of Italy in period after 3000BC. That is vastily younger than the Cardial spread or any wave of early farmers. In fact even eastern clades like L23* and M269* in SW Asia, the east Balkans etc are too young to relate to the first farmers, cardial etc. It is also wrongly positioned in the east to be associated with Caridal. Recent reports looking closely at Bulgaria, Romania, Moldovia, Serbai strongly suggest R1b's earliest location in Europe are on the western shore of the Black Sea and that the Danube towards the Alps was the most likely route further west. R1b is practically unknown on the Adriatic coast of the Balkans and L23* dramtically drops as you head inland from the Black Sea in Bulgaria. It also has most of its concentration in Poland in the south and east suggesting a route along the Dniester for L23* into Poland. It dramatically falls away in Poland when you move away from there.

    So leaving aside the IE question (which is not going to be resolved by people in this hobby if all the academics who have spent a lifetime on this still disagree) an unbiased look at the (admittedly patchy) data for R1b suggests M269 and L23* appeared in Europe somewhere around the Black Sea or SW Asia only in the late Neolithic or copper age (terminology varies) and there was a considerable delay before it spread west of the Alps in the period 3000-2500BC. This cannot be due to in-situ expansion of anciently settled R1b folks in the west because the phylogeny shows that almost all European R1b derives from L11* (and L51*) above it. None of this dates before 3000BC according to most variance experts. I think a case can be made that it might have entered the Alps from the east in the tail end of the L23XL51 phase around 3500-3300BC and crossed the Alps in the L51*-L11* phase around 3500BC-2500BC period possibly with L11 and P312 occurring there then arriving at points west like Iberia etc in the 3000-2500BC period as DF27.

    I think that is a fairly unbiased summary of what the evidence suggests at present. What that leaves us with is a late Neolithic/copper age presence in the east Balkans, Anatolia, Caucasus and Lower Danube commencing in the late Neolithic and copper age and a spread west through the Alps in the L23-L51-L11-P312 phase then a spread further west. A simple expansion from the extreme west in Iberia seems unlikely although a spread of DF27 subclade from Iberia in a west-east direction (mainly along the Med. as far as Italy but also to a lesser degree up the Atlantic) around 2800-2500BC is a strong possibility.

    I think that is about as much as can be said. R1b would appear to have had a very obscure existance away from the main farming advances in the early Neolithic and only started to form any sort of reconstructable shape in the L23 phase. Its location before that is totally obscure and all we can do is look at where the L23, M73 and V88 late Neolithic copper age expansions have a centre of gravity and higher variance and that seems to point to the area around the Black Sea which of course includes the Balkans, Caucasus, Anatolia etc (original situation on north shore is obscure). The position of R1b in the Palaeolithic and early Neolithic is totally unknown but its pretty clear it wasnt on the major early farmers starting point on the route west (Levant, south and east Anatolia etc) if ancient DNA, variance, phylogeny etc are not completely misleading us. If it had been in those areas we would have seen R1b in its form c. 7000-6000BC in a wave west. R1b at that time would have consisted of P297XM269 or P25XP269 form WAY upstream. SO yes it is impossible for the vast majority of European R1b to have simply re-expanded in the west from Neolithic settlers or you would have to have the entire R1b family from P23* or P297* downstream expand from there across Eurasia. This clearly is not the case and it goes completley against the distribution and variance of R1b clades.

    So what we need to look for in terms of archaeological correlation in a sudden presence (or growth from virtually zero) around much (maybe all) of the cirumpontic area c. 5000-4000BC followed by a spread through the Alps c. 3500-3000BC, an arrival on the west side of the Alps in the 3000-2500BC period etc. That is not a re-expansion from the west. Only once we reach the L51 level can we argue for a major expansion in the west (from Liguria or adhacent) and only from DF27 (three phylogenic steppes below L51) can we argue for a major expansion from Iberia.

    Archaeologically the main potential for culprits for the initial arrival are

    1. pastoralists from Marmara about 5000BC moving into Bulgaria

    2. copper metallurgical groups of the Circumpontic traditions c. 4000-3000BC (tradition oldest in Maykop and adjacent areas to the south)

    3. early steppe groups who spilled into SE Europe c. 4000BC onwards

    4. farming groups (perhaps kurganised in some way) fleeing the massive climatic collapse which devasted old Europe c. 4200BC and forming new groups in the melting pot just west of the steppes.

    Any of these seems to fit and I cannot see any other options. I also think that these are not mutually exclusive options. For example the Marmara pastoralist did probably have input into the Cuc-Tryp farmers. The latter may have had a steppe substrate (skull evidence). The Circumpontic metallurgical province was partly run by steppe groups. Maykop was very influential on the steppe group etc etc.

    I also would not think anyone on earth can at present guess which one of these is correct. I dont really much care but I think we should stick to options such as these which fit the data.
    Last edited by alan; 04-19-2013 at 02:21 PM.

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    Thank you for expressing your thinking. I'll add my comments, but keep in mind I am just speculating and I like to be a little contrarian. (...just ask my family!)

    Quote Originally Posted by alan View Post
    ...The current hobbiest thinking is that the western Alps are a likely secondary takeoff point because of high variance and L51* and L11* distribution.
    It may be due my instincts in pheasant hunting back home, but it's very important to lead the bird as you shoot. Likewise, I do think there was a general east to west flow. I also think when we are looking for the Most Recent Common Ancestor (MRCA) for L11 or founder of any clade, we have to recognize that is origin trail may be nil genetically. There was only one of him.

    I lean towards L51* and L11* coming from the east side or just east of Alps, probably along the Danube.

    However, there is a point that I'd like to re-iterate that some really don't accept. I'm not talking to you but there are some can't grapple with this. It doesn't matter how much L11/P312/U106 is out there today, they still had only a single man as MRCA, and he doesn't look to be that old. To me, the phylogenetic tree and a single founder is a powerful consideration to be be triangulated with geography and time... and cultures, etc.
    Last edited by TigerMW; 04-19-2013 at 11:59 PM.

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    Alan -- this makes a fair amount of sense to me. Without opening the whole can of IE worms it seems likely to me that both R1b and R1a were near to/involved with early IE, wherever one places it.

    Mike's explanation of the Danube makes sense to me for L11, but so do the Alps; after all, we seem to have some "strange" (for Europe) yDNA around there, such as C, L, some "odd" Q, and several G2a subclades. Mind you, I'm not sure those all had to be part of the same movement. In fact, from Oetzi it would seem not.

    One thing I would like to be assured of, perhaps by STR comparison to the relevant populations, is that the southeast Polish L23 lines are neither Ashkenazi nor Armenian. David, Prince of Galicia (Galicia is the precise area we're looking at, southeast Poland and western Ukraine) invited Armenians to settle in his principality in the 1300s; similarly, Galicia was at one time about a third Ashkenazi. If there's a gentle gradient to this area it's probably not a concern, but a sudden L23 spike in Galicia might simply be down to either or both West Asian groups.

    If this is not an issue, we might be looking at an analogue to the most basic R1a-M198 types we have, which are in Belarus, Moldova, Russia.
     

    Other ancestral Y lines:

    E1b-M81 Ukraine (Ashkenazi)
    E1b-V13 England
    I1-M253 Ireland
    I2-M423 Ukraine
    R1a-L176.1 Scotland
    R1b-L584 Syria/Turkey (Sephardi)
    R1b-L20 Ireland
    R1b-L21 (1)England; (2)Wales?>Connecticut
    R1b-L48 England
    R1b-P312 Scotland
    R1b-FGC32576 Ireland

    Other ancestral mtDNA lines:

    H1b2a Ukraine (Ashkenazi)
    H6a1a3 Ukraine
    K1a9 Belarus (Ashkenazi)
    K1c2 Ireland
    V7a Ukraine

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    Quote Originally Posted by alan View Post
    Archaeologically the main potential for culprits for the initial arrival are

    1. pastoralists from Marmara about 5000BC moving into Bulgaria

    2. copper metallurgical groups of the Circumpontic traditions c. 4000-3000BC (tradition oldest in Maykop and adjacent areas to the south)

    3. early steppe groups who spilled into SE Europe c. 4000BC onwards

    4. farming groups (perhaps kurganised in some way) fleeing the massive climatic collapse which devasted old Europe c. 4200BC and forming new groups in the melting pot just west of the steppes.

    Any of these seems to fit and I cannot see any other options. I also think that these are not mutually exclusive options. For example the Marmara pastoralist did probably have input into the Cuc-Tryp farmers. The latter may have had a steppe substrate (skull evidence). The Circumpontic metallurgical province was partly run by steppe groups. Maykop was very influential on the steppe group etc etc.

    I also would not think anyone on earth can at present guess which one of these is correct. I dont really much care but I think we should stick to options such as these which fit the data.
    Or, for arguments sake, it could be more than one of the scenarios above. For example:

    Step 1: The original L23(xZ51,Z2103) arises in the Crimean Kemi Oba Culture, Stelae and all.
    Step 2: A movement east and south could have given rise to Z2103. We know that Kemi Oba had many similarities with the Maykop Culture and they were contemporaries (~3700 BC), so this works archaeologically and chronologically. By around 3400 BC, this migration extends further south into the Armenian Plateau in the form of the Kura–Araxes Culture. This would give rise to the early Anatolian branch of PIE.
    Step 3: A secondary branch of L23(xZ51,Z2103) makes its way up the Danube (a short trip from Crimea), and lays the L23 groundwork that eventually pushes the full Copper Age and the Secondary Products Revolution towards the Alps.
    Step 4: By 3500 BC, L51 is already in existence in the Alps and are exploiting the oldest Western European Copper Mine (Monte Loreto). These people would have brought their Stelae related beliefs with them.
    Step 5: By 2900 BC, the Portuguese Bell Beakers start their Maritime expansion. This would make P312 about 28% older than Z2103, which would fit variance pretty well.
    Step 6: The reflux phase of Bell Beaker begins and by 2450 BC, L21 has already appeared in the Isles.

    The western part of the journey is pretty much similar to Jean's "Stelae People" (minus the Yamnaya of course).
    Last edited by R.Rocca; 04-20-2013 at 12:39 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikewww View Post
    To me, the phylogenetic tree and a single founder is a powerful consideration to be be triangulated with geography and time... and cultures, etc.
    Yeah, the time element is very important - when we have robust age estimates of each R1b subclade, we should be better able to triangulate on the geography.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GailT View Post
    Yeah, the time element is very important - when we have robust age estimates of each R1b subclade, we should be better able to triangulate on the geography.
    TMRCA estimates are subject to many vagaries. However, for R1b we now several studies' worth of data, a lot of long haplotypes and and interclade TMRCA methodologies. I think we have robust enough data broken up by the SNP defined phylogeny that we can have robust estimates. The issues are the methodologies themselves, or actually, more the STR mutation rates. The SNP methods need maturity in the coverage of the Y chromosome. Posted on the R1b Early Subclades subcategory phylogeny thread are several TMRCA estimates from different folks and methodologies that find essential agreement.

    I would never say they are precise. Still the relative nature of the timing within the phylogeny along with the geographical distribution is robust.
    Last edited by TigerMW; 04-20-2013 at 03:47 AM.

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    Hopefully with full genome sequencing for y-DNA we should get good SNP based age estimates soon.

  10. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Richard A. Rocca View Post
    Step 1: The original L23(xZ51,Z2103) arises in the Crimean Kemi Oba Culture, Stelae and all.
    You always forget what my Italian homonymous (Gioiello ) says: that R-L23* doesn’t come (unfortunately) from Eastern R1b1* with YCAII= 21-23 and 23-23, but from Western one with 18-22 or 18-23. Thus your hypothesis doesn’t fit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rathna View Post
    You always forget what my Italian homonymous (Gioiello ) says: that R-L23* doesn’t come (unfortunately) from Eastern R1b1* with YCAII= 21-23 and 23-23, but from Western one with 18-22 or 18-23. Thus your hypothesis doesn’t fit.
    Sorry, but to rely on one marker that may or may not have mutated up or down one or two steps over a period of 10,000 years proves very little of anything. Ancient DNA has shown no support for an early R1b in Italy. So do we rely on a few modal values of modern values (which may also be affected by founder effects), or ancient DNA? That said, I wouldn't rule it out either and would not be shocked to find early R1b in ancient DNA from Italy.

    And if you read my post, I wrote "for arguments sake". This is one of the million different scenarios that could have played out for R1b.
    Last edited by R.Rocca; 04-21-2013 at 12:35 PM.
    Paternal: R1b-U152 >> L2 >> FGC10543 >> PR5365, Pietro Rocca, b. 1559, Agira, Sicily, Italy
    Maternal: H4a1-T152C!, Maria Coto, b. ~1864, Galicia, Spain
    Mother's Paternal: J1+ FGC4745/FGC4766+ PF5019+, Gerardo Caprio, b. 1879, Caposele, Avellino, Campania, Italy
    Father's Maternal: T2b-C150T, Francisca Santa Cruz, b.1916, Garganchon, Burgos, Spain
    Paternal Great (x3) Grandfather: R1b-U106 >> L48 >> CTS2509, Filippo Ensabella, b.~1836, Agira, Sicily, Italy

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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard A. Rocca View Post

    Step 2: We know that Kemi Oba had many similarities with the Maykop Culture and they were contemporaries (~3700 BC), so this works archaeologically and chronologically. By around 3400 BC, this migration extends further south into the Armenian Plateau in the form of the Kura–Araxes Culture. This would give rise to the early Anatolian branch of PIE.
    I'm afraid not. Linguistically it seems that the founders of the Anatolian branch must have broken away from PIE before the invention of the wheel c. 3500 BC. One movement stands out as fitting the case.

    Step 1: Azov > Danube Delta c. 4000 BC. The Suvorovo group in the Danube Delta 4,200-3,500 BC appear identical culturally to the contemporary Novodanilovka group north-west of the Sea of Azov.

    Step 2: Suvorovo > Ezero culture, Bulgaria (3300—2700 BC)

    Step 3: Ezero > Troy I (c. 3000 BC). Troy I has pottery similar to that of the Ezero Culture Troy I also has an anthropomorphic stele. At a higher level in Troy is a text in Luwian.

    Bear in mind that all the languages of the Anatolian branch had a common ancestor. So if Luwian can be traced back to the Balkans, so can Hittite etc.

    Kura–Araxes Culture seems to have been the bearer of the Urartian language, and to have entered the Caucasus from the south.
    Last edited by Jean M; 04-22-2013 at 10:02 AM.

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