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Haplogroup E1b1b (Y-DNA)
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|Haplogroup E1b1b||Haplogroup G2a||Haplogroup I1||Haplogroup I2||Haplogroup J1||Haplogroup J2||Haplogroup R1a||Haplogroup R1b|
Haplogroup E1b1b (formerly E3b) represents the last direct major migration from Africa into Europe. It is believed to have first appeared in the Horn of Africa (some also suggest southern Africa) approximately 26,000 years ago and dispersed to the Middle East during the Upper Paleolithic and Mesolithic periods.
Distribution of haplogroup E1b1b in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa
On the European continent it has the highest concentration in north-west Greece, Albania and Kosovo, then fading around the Balkans, the rest of Greece and Western Turkey. Outside Europe, it is also found in most of the Middle East, northern and eastern Africa, especially in Morocco, Libya, Egypt Yemen, Somalia, Ethiopia and South Africa.
|Did E1b1b cross directly from North Africa to Europe due to climate change ?|
It is still unclear when haplogroup E entered Europe. Recent DNA tests from Neolithic sites in southern Germany and southern France lacked all trace of E1b1b. This suggests a later arrival, either towards the end of the Neolithic/Chalcolithic or during the Bronze Age. In the absence of Y-DNA from Neolithic Greece, South italy and Iberia, nothing rules out the possibility that E1b1b was present to these regions since the Neolithic, Mesolithic or even the late Paleolithic. North Africans carriers of E1b1b could have crossed the Mediterranean (probably in several independent waves) anytime between the Last Glacial Maximum (circa 20,000 years ago) and the last desertification of the Sahara that started when the monsoon retreated south 6,200 years ago.
At the Last Glacial Maximum, sea levels were 120 metres lower than today and the Strait of Gibraltar was just a few kilometres wide, permitting even the most primitive raft to cross it easily. Is it merely a coincidence that the last attested trace of Neanderthal in Iberia (actually in Gibraltar itself) dates from 24,000 years ago, a short time before the Last Glacial Maximum ? Could their disappearance be the result of an an absorption by Homo Sapiens from North Africa ? The last Iberian Neanderthals did show some signs of hybridization with Homo Sapiens. Whereas Homo Sapiens indisputably colonised Europe from the Middle East, a counter-current colonisation from Northwest Africa is plausible too. This would explains why there is so much Northwest African E-M81 in Portugal and Northwest Spain, which is not corroborated by any historical migration nor by any archaeologically demonstrable Neolithic migration from Northwest Africa.
The Sahara changed many times from a lush green place to a hot and arid desert in the last 20,000 years. It was as arid as today at the end of the last Ice Age 13,000 years ago, then the warming climate brought tropical monsoons again from 10,000 to 7,000 years before present. The desertification taking place today started around 4,200 BCE. This severe transformations of their environment surely had a tremenfous effect on the indigenous (E1b1b) people, causing populations booms during the green millennia of the Neolithic, and prompting migrations to milder climes once the rain had gone. It wouldn't be all that surprising that North Africans crossed the Mediterranean (again ?) in the late Neolithic. The region most affected by the desertification would have been around modern Libya. The northern Maghreb enjoys the protection of the mountains that stopped the advance of the desert. Egypt had the Nile and its delta. One hypothesis is that the Neolithic population of Libya migrated to what is now South Italy, Greece, Macedonia and Albania, bringing with them the E-V13 lineage, which is still found in Libya today, as well as in Iberia, Egypt and the Levant, but is far more common around Greece. Alternatively, instead of crossing directly the Mediterranean from Tunisia to Sicily, then to Italy and the southern Balkans, the migration could have taken place along the coast of the Mediteranean, through Egypt, the Levant and Anatolia, and eventually to Greece. Some migrants might have taken a westward route to Iberia, explaining why E-V13 is found in western Iberia, alongside the Maghreban E-M81, while Greeks never colonised that region.
E1b1b1a1 (or E-M78, formerly E3b1a) is the most common variety of haplogroup E among Europeans and Near Easterners. E-M78 is thought to have migrated out of Egypt in the Mesolithic or Neolithic to colonise the Middle East, where it mixed with the indigenous inhabitants belonging to haplogroups J and G.
The Phoenicians, from the Levant, also contributed to the spread of E1b1b1a (as well as J2, Q and T) to places such as Cyprus, Malata, Sardinia, Ibiza and southern Iberia. The lower incidence of E1b1b1a in Syria and Anatolia is almost certainly due to the competition from the other major Neolithic haplogroups : G2 and J2.
E-M78 is divided into 4 main branches : E1b1b1a1 (E-V12), E1b1b1a2 (E-V13), E1b1b1a3 (E-V22) and E1b1b1a4 (E-V65), each further subdivided in "a" and "b" subclades.
- E-V13 is one of the major markers of the Neolithic diffusion of farming from the Levant. Like all the other subclades of E1b1b1a, E-V13 originated in North-East Africa around the end of the last Ice Age. Its frequency is now far higher in Greece, South Italy and the Balkans than anywhere else due to a founder effect, i.e. the migration of a small group of settlers carrying mostly this lineage (but also a small amount of other North-East African lineages, notably E-M123 and T). Archeological evidence shows that the region of Thessaly, in northern Greece, was the starting point (circa 6,000 BCE) for the diffusion of agriculture through the Balkans and the Danube basin, as far as northern France to the west and Russia to the east. The modern distribution of E-V13 hints at a strong correlation with the Neolithic and Chalcolithic cultures of Old Europe, such as the Vinča, Boian, Maritsa and Karanovo, cultures. However, the genetic testing of three male samples from the LBK culture only revealed the presence of haplogroups F and G2a. The sample is obviously too small to rule out that E1b1b also entered Europe during the Neolithic period though.
E-V13 is also associated with the ancient Greek expansion and colonisation. Outside of the Balkans and Central Europe, it is particularly common in Southern Italy, Cyprus and Southern France, all part of the Classcical ancient Greek world.
- E-V22 is the predominant subclade in the Levant and is therefore associated with the Phoenicians and Jews, in addition to the spread of agriculture. The Phoenicians could have spread E-V22 to Sicily, Sardinia, southern Spain and the Maghreb, and the Jews to Greece and mainland Italy and Spain. However, the Mediterranean route for the diffusion of agriculture (see map below) went through the exact same regions. It is therefore impossible to know at present which of the two periods (Neolithic or Classical Antiquity) played the stronger role in the spread of V22 around the Mediterranean.
- E-V12 is the most common subclade of M78 in Egypt. Its low presence around Greece and Anatolia indicates that it probably already existed when E moved there in the early Neolithic.
- E-V65 is found in North Africa, with a maximum frequency in Lybia, then Morocco. It is also likely to have originated in Egypt. In Europe it is found at low frequencies in Greece and Sicily, but interestingly makes up one fourth of Sardinian E. It could be due to immigration from the Phoenician colonies in the Maghreb to Sardinia (the Sardinian haplogroup I2a1 is also present at low frequencies along the coast of Algeria and Tunisia, confirming exchanges of population between the two regions, maybe when both were Phoenician colonies).
E1b1b1a2 (E-M81, formerly E3b1b) is characteristic of the Berbers of North-West Africa. In some parts of Morocco E1b1b1b can peak at 80% of the population. This sub-hapolgroup is also found in Iberia, Italy and southern France, with the highest concentrations in southern Portugal (12%) and decreasing as we move north.
E1b1b1a3 (E-M123) and its main branch E1b1b1c1 (E-M34) is also associated with the diffusion of agriculture and ancient Middle-Eastern civilizations. This haplogroup peaks in Ethiopia (approximately 8 to 10%) and in the southern Levant (10-12% in Palestine and Lebanon), from where it expands in all directions over the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and South-East Europe. Within Europe, E-M123 is most common in Italy, especially in Sicily and Sardinia, and in southern France. There are also peaks in south-central Anatolia, west Anatolia, Tunisia and north-east Algeria. The distribution of E-M123 matches almost exactly the expansion of farming (see map below) during the Neolithic period. E-M123 seems to go hand in hand with haplogroup G2a, with the difference that G2a reaches its maximum frequency around the Caucasus and Anatolia, where cattle, pigs and goats where first domesticated. Inside Europe, E-M123 follows more or less the distribution of E-V13, with the highest frequency (1 to 5%) observed in Greece, South Italy, the Balkans and the Danube basin, then fading towards Germany, Poland, Ukraine and Russia, where its frequency is under 1%.
|The Harvey Y-DNA Genetic Project managed to retrace the ancestry and identify the Y-chromosomal haplogroup of William Harvey (1578 -1657), the first person to describe completely and in detail the systemic circulation and properties of blood being pumped to the body by the heart.|
|Gérard Lucotte et al. (2012) recovered the DNA of Napoleon Bonaparte from beard hair follicules and compared his Y-DNA to that of one of his present-day descendants, Charles Napoléon. They established that both men belonged to haplogroup E1b1b1c1* (E-M34), a subclade which is thought to have reached Mediterranean Europe from the Levant during the Neolithic period. Napoleon I had previously been identified by Lucotte's team as a member of mtDNA haplogroup H.|
|The Wright Brothers, the inventors of the world's first successful airplane, belonged to haplogroup E1b1b1a2 (V13). They were supposedly descended from Robert Wright of Brook Hall, Essex, England, which allowed the Wright Surname DNA Project to isolate their paternal lineage.|
|The acclaimed theoretical physicist Albert Einstein is presumed to have belonged to Y-haplogroup E-M35.1 (E-M243) based on the results from a patrilineal descendant of Naphtali Hirsch Einstein, Albert Einstein's great-grand-father. Approximately 20% of Ashkenazi Jews belong to haplogroup E1b1b.|
|Ronny Decorte, a geneticist from the Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium, tested relatives of Adolf Hitler and determined that the Fürher belonged to haplogroup E1b1b, ironcially the haplogroup thought to be at the origin of Afro-Asiatic languages, which includes the Semitic languages and peoples that Hitler despised so much.|