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Fire Haired14
24-11-15, 00:22
BBC: DNA study finds London was ethnically diverse from start (http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-34809804)

BT: 2,000 year old Londoners weren't from London, DNA reveals (http://home.bt.com/news/odd-news/2000-year-old-londoners-werent-from-london-dna-reveals-11364020974414)

I don't know if any paper has been published. Here's information that can gathered from the articles. They tested genetic markers

Four indviduals:
14 year old Girl: North Africa.

Gladiator: "His mother's ancestral line is common in Eastern Europe and the Middle East.". His mtDNA is probably an ambiguous West Eurasian mtDNA haplogroup. You can't pin point origin with mtDNA.

"Mansell Street man": 45 years old. Dark Brown hair and Brown eyes. "both his remains and DNA showed a strong African connection." NW Africa, Egypt, Ethopia? Doesn't say.

"Harper road woman": Actually a male. Died 43AD which was at the begging of Roman conquest. He was a native Briton buried with Roman pottery and belongings. The authors say this means he adopted Roman culture.

It'll be very interesting to see more detailed information from the paper and genome bloggers. It'll be most interesting to see the genetic-affinity of the three non-Britons. They can reveal information about the regions they came from. Maybe there's been influence of Arab genes in NW Africa and the North African girl will reveal that. Hopefully the Gladiator had his autosomal DNA tested. If he wasn't Briton, he could reveal information about another region in the Middle East or Europe.

As interesting as this information is, i'm annoyed by the PC-agenda in the articles. The "Harper road woman" was biologically male but because he was first thought to be female based on skeletal remains the BBC and BT articles say "physically she was a woman." They insist on calling him a woman. This is just stupid. When someone wants to be apart of a differnt culture they're crazy (http://www.cnn.com/2015/06/16/us/washington-rachel-dolezal-naacp/) but when they want to be a differnt gender they're heros (https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=7&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwij-pnp16fJAhVDAxoKHV1PDh4QFggzMAY&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.huffingtonpost.com%2Fjim-joseph%2Fbruce-jenner-a-hero-once-again_b_7142482.html&usg=AFQjCNHSuzkj6lkmBWWkYmp_ns2rds0eXA&sig2=91QOUbOwgxkS5EhudHlhjQ)?

Angela
24-11-15, 01:47
Very interesting, Fire-Haired. However, I couldn't find anything about how the remains to be tested were chosen. Perhaps this group of four is not very representative of all the remains.

Tomenable
24-11-15, 03:37
I guess this, among other things, explains why Pre-Roman Hinxton Celtic samples appear "more northern European" genetically than modern English people. I mean, in Eurogenes K15 Hinxton Celts scored 38% North_Sea, 30% Atlantic and 6,5% Mediterranean. While modern English people from Kent scored 35,5% North_Sea, 30% Atlantic and 11,5% Mediterranean. Given all those subsequent Anglo-Saxon, Viking and so on immigrations, you would rather expect North_Sea to increase and Mediterranean to stay the same.

Especially that Anglo-Saxon Hinxton samples scored 41,5% North_Sea, 28,5% Atlantic and 6,5% Mediterranean.

epoch
24-11-15, 09:18
I guess this, among other things, explains why Pre-Roman Hinxton Celtic samples appear "more northern European" genetically than modern English people. I mean, in Eurogenes K15 Hinxton Celts scored 38% North_Sea, 30% Atlantic and 6,5% Mediterranean. While modern English people from Kent scored 35,5% North_Sea, 30% Atlantic and 11,5% Mediterranean. Given all those subsequent Anglo-Saxon, Viking and so on immigrations, you would rather expect North_Sea to increase and Mediterranean to stay the same.

Especially that Anglo-Saxon Hinxton samples scored 41,5% North_Sea, 28,5% Atlantic and 6,5% Mediterranean.


Cities were only a tiny fraction of the general population in those days. Furthermore, they probably were effectively population sinks as diseases simply can take far more down by expanding far quicker. I did some genealogical research to my family and found that most family lines in cities tended to die out. I noticed this happening well into the 18th century.

Tomenable
24-11-15, 14:00
Furthermore, they probably were effectively population sinks as diseases simply can take far more down by expanding far quicker. I did some genealogical research to my family and found that most family lines in cities tended to die out. I noticed this happening well into the 18th century.
It also depends who were they in those cities, how important were they.

Because the patriciate (the richest class of inhabitants of a city), who lived in comfortable houses and also owned some villas in the countryside where they could always take a refuge and hide for some time in case of an outbreak of an epidemic disease inside the city itself, tended to have a lot of children surviving to adulthood.

But lower / poorer strata of urban folks indeed tended to die like flies.

The countryside was indeed a much more healthy environment back then.

Cities could usually increase only by immigration from the countryside, because they tended to have a negative natural growth. Among exceptions were Jews who had some hygene-increasing religious rules and probably that's how they became so numerous in some cities, especially in countries where serfdom prevented peasants from migrating to cities en masse (under serfdom there were limitations on a number of peasants who could leave a village per year).

Tomenable
24-11-15, 14:05
If even Roman London was so multicultural, I'm afraid to ask about Rome itself.

In that mega-city (for that time) of 1 million people, there were probably migrants from all corners of the Empire !!!

But I've read that for most of the population life in Rome was not rosy, even though it had aqueducts and sewers.

Now imagine some large Medieval cities where often there was no running water and no sewers.

Angela
24-11-15, 14:39
Epoch, your insight is, in fact, supported by scholarship.

Mary Beard, one of the world's pre-eminent Classicists, has written extensively about the "Romanization" of the ancient world, which includes an analysis of the movement to cities from the surrounding countryside but also from other parts of the province or Empire.

Her take on it is that the populations of the largest cities, despite good sanitation and clean water, were constantly being "pruned" by disease. We now know, for example, of the toll that the plague took in late Roman times, but even in earlier times disease would have spread more easily in overcrowded conditions, and there were no antibiotics etc. Also, civil wars, rebellions etc. would have had an effect.

It may be that most Europeans are descended not from the people who lived in these cities but from rural populations. Of course, there would have been some effect.

This is a review of her latest book. She's highly entertaining as well as incredibly erudite.
http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/oct/18/spqr-by-mary-beard-review-rome

Tomenable
24-11-15, 17:15
Today in Europe fertility rates in cities are lower than in the countryside.

One exception are some cities in Western Europe inhabited by high-fertility groups of non-European immigrants.

Though in France average fertility rates in rural areas are still higher than in cities.

LeBrok
24-11-15, 18:04
Cities were only a tiny fraction of the general population in those days. Furthermore, they probably were effectively population sinks as diseases simply can take far more down by expanding far quicker. I did some genealogical research to my family and found that most family lines in cities tended to die out. I noticed this happening well into the 18th century.
In good times 10% of population lived in cities and towns, in bad times even less.
We should mention that folks in cities lived on surplus production of food of villagers. In times of poverty and hunger city folks died first.

Fire Haired14
24-11-15, 22:09
The point of the articles is that London began with Rome and fat the start many differnt types of people were living there. Any Britons living in London were born somewhere else, because London began only when Rome invaded. Plus, people from outside of Britain came. No one is saying all of Britain was ethnically diverse at this time.

I dislike how they connect diversity in early London to modern London. It isn't connected at all. Persons of North African decent in London in 43 AD have nothing to do with people of North African decent there today. After Rome and before today it should have been somewhat mixed at times but mixed with neighboring people. The common people are always going to be more typical of Britain.

bicicleur
25-11-15, 09:18
I dislike how they connect diversity in early London to modern London.

it is political correct tough

bicicleur
25-11-15, 09:24
If even Roman London was so multicultural, I'm afraid to ask about Rome itself.

In that mega-city (for that time) of 1 million people, there were probably migrants from all corners of the Empire !!!

But I've read that for most of the population life in Rome was not rosy, even though it had aqueducts and sewers.

Now imagine some large Medieval cities where often there was no running water and no sewers.

after the Punic wars, a Roman upper class existed that bought all the fertile lands in Italy and they put slave labor on it
the empoverished peasants came to Rome surviving on clientelism
it was the era of panem et circensis and the forebear of the end of the Roman republic
Rome changed completley. It was chaos. I don't think it was a pleasant city to live in.

LeBrok
25-11-15, 17:05
after the Punic wars, a Roman upper class existed that bought all the fertile lands in Italy and they put slave labor on it
the empoverished peasants came to Rome surviving on clientelism
it was the era of panem et circensis and the forebear of the end of the Roman republic
Rome changed completley. It was chaos. I don't think it was a pleasant city to live in.
And yet everybody wanted to live in Rome.
Human factor wasn't the decisive reason behind collapse of Roman Empire. It was global cooling, dry years, failed crops, lack of food, hunger and drop in population numbers. They were few of them and too poor (lack of weapons and troops) to resist attacks of tribes squeezed out from the Steppe by this climatic cooling. More and more scientific papers are coming out implicating climate in Rome collapse and the Dark Ages.

bicicleur
25-11-15, 17:52
And yet everybody wanted to live in Rome.
Human factor wasn't the decisive reason behind collapse of Roman Empire. It was global cooling, dry years, failed crops, lack of food, hunger and drop in population numbers. They were few of them and too poor (lack of weapons and troops) to resist attacks of tribes squeezed out from the Steppe by this climatic cooling. More and more scientific papers are coming out implicating climate in Rome collapse and the Dark Ages.

people with ambition had to be in Rome to assure themselves with the support of influential and powerfull fractions
wealthy people who could afford it had a villa in the country or on the other side of the Tiber, next to the Martian fields, or on top of Palatine hill

the famine and natural diseasters affected the invading tribes as much as Rome itself
Rome was in a downward spiral, it couldn't defend its outer boundaries anymore and ended as a big spoil for looters and ambitious chiefs