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Thread: Jewish people, where they are from?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kamani View Post
    how do you guys explain that Ashkenazim are "smarter" than Sicilians or Greeks, even-though genetically are very similar? (based on number of famous scientists, current average IQ, chess champions etc)
    You're generalising, pilgrim... From personal experience, there are two types of AJs:

    1. The extremely intelligent ones
    2. The extremely dumb ones (usually the most inbred and religious, you'd be appalled if you knew how stupid some of them are)

    The whole deal about AJ "intelligence" is a product of Jewish education (we absolutely loathe public education, for us education is a private matter) and history (most of the idiots and naive folks were weeded out by constant persecution).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    The argument that Behar is refuting isn't the one I'm making. I realize that some people are allergic to the idea of any connection between the Ashkenazi and the Khazars, mostly because some racists have used that connection to advance a false argument that the Ashkenazis aren't real Jews, which is not at all what I'm saying. There is documentary evidence of Jewish people in that part of the world after the Khazar ruling class converted to Judaism in a vain attempt to stay out of the christian/muslim wars. That's not evidence that the Ashkenazi are anything other than mostly Jews from the Middle East, although Behar seems to assume that's the argument being made by anyone who mentions the idea that the Ashkenazi came out of southern Russia.

    Behar said:

    "Competing theories include a hypothesis that Ashkenazi Jews descend largely from the Khazar Khaganate, a conglomerate of mostly Turkic tribes, who ruled in what is now southern Russia with the capital Atil in the Volga delta on the northwestern banks of the Caspian Sea approximately 1,400 to 1,000 years ago (Figure 1). According to this hypothesis, a portion of the Khazar population, among whom at least some had converted to Judaism, migrated north and west into Europe from their ancestral lands to become the ancestors of some or all of the Ashkenazi Jewish population."

    But I think there's better historical evidence for the idea that only the ruling elite among the Khazars ever converted to Judaism but that Jews from what is now Iraq may have migrated to the Khazar Khanate and later migrated westward, which would explain the bottleneck effect that's apparent. That's why the Ashkenazi Jews are mostly ancient Middle Eastern but with a bit of Siberian ancestry. I'm not necessarily convinced that a Turkish khanate in southern Russia was necessarily mostly Turkish in ancestry, and I suspect there was only a small amount of gene flow from the Khazars to the Jews who settled among them.

    Where's the evidence for Jewish communities in France and Germany during and after the Migration Period?

    I'm not "allergic" to such a connection... In fact, I'm pretty sure that most AJs would be delighted to find out that they have Turkic roots, most of the people who're pushing this theory are AJs themselves (Koestler, Sand, etc).

    The main problem with the Khazar model is that in any case, Mizrahim appear more "Khazar" than Western Jews, if we follow Elhaik's methodology which basically uses Armenians & Georgians as proxies for Khazar ancestry (don't laugh, he really did it).

    Also, when subscribing to such a theory you'll find yourself at loss when trying to explain the incredible similarity between Ashkenazim and, say, Syrian Jews (I have Syrian and Lebanese Jewish relatives on RF myself, and I'm just half-Jewish).

    The more we try to uncover traces of Khazar ancestry, the scarcer the evidence for it... Just read Rootsi et al. 2013's paper about R1a-M582, a marker which was long taken as actual proof of Khazar ancestry in Ashkenazim!

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Doe View Post
    Okay got it, thanks for the answer, I heard of a recent study which said that pre Islamic Eastern Mediterranean pops were more Cypriot like than Bedouin like. Wait who AJs do share a large amount of IBD with? BTW what's IBD? xD
    I think the recent study you're referring to is Fernandez et al. 2014, which obtained MtDNA data from PPNB samples... It basically shows that Ashkenazim and Cypriots retain markers which have disappeared in the Near East.
    Or perhaps is it Haber et al 2013?
    This was significant for me because I've been saying for years now that Cyprus might've retained most of the pre-islamic Levant's genetic make-up.
    Kind of what Sardinia is to Europe in a sense.

    I mean, look at the picture emerging from genome-wide studies of Neolithic European samples... Population change is a reality, we've stumbled on a few surprises and I very much doubt continuity will ever regain the popularity it once enjoyed in academic circles (and that's coming from someone who speaks to archeologists on a daily basis).

    No reason to believe that the Near East is any different, especially considering the data we have (take African admixture for instance, Moorjani et al. 2011 is very informative here)... I'm expecting even more surprises when we get our hands on Near Eastern and Eastern Mediterranean samples (as Angela said, the Iron Age Thracian shows that there were Ötzi-like people living in this area even during the Iron Age, that's a red flag if you ask me).

    What's IBD?
    You know they say that the shortest questions are the hardest to answer? :)
    IBD = Identical By Descent [segment] (read about it, if you tested with 23&Me that's what enables you to find RF matches).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    From what I've seen of the results, in the vast majority of cases it shows that there wasn't gene flow from Jews into the Italian gene pool, which is a surprise because I thought there would be some, given the documentary evidence of Jews who converted in the north in the late days of the Empire and of the ones in Sicily and Calabria who converted rather than go into exile when the Spanish introduced the Inquisition in the south. It may just be that the numbers were too small to make much of an impression.

    On the other hand, I've seen no IBD evidence for gene flow from Italians into the Ashkenazim either, for all the talk of a Jewish population after the invasions taking gentile wives.
    Well I do have a Greek relative and a few Italian matches in my RF... But that's rather trivial compared to other matches I get (Iranian Jews, Bukharan Jews, etc).

    So I basically agree with what you're saying here.

    Didn't the rules about matrilineal descent come about after this whole period? Before that, in addition to male Hellenes converting to Judaism, you would have had gentile women marrying into the community. Certainly, there didn't seem to be any rules prohibiting the marriage of Ruth and Boaz in a far earlier time period.
    Matrilineal descent was established during the Tanna'im's time, so it's a relatively recent law (my personal opinion is that it was favoured because of the fact that Near Eastern women rarely tend to intermarry, hence reducing chances of assimilation). But some Jewish groups still retained the original patrilineal system (Karaites, Juhurim, Yemenite Jews until recent times, etc).
    I'm pretty sure Judeans mixed intensively with Hellenes, the problem though as you might guess is that uniparental lineages are very similar so it's hard to figure it out most of the time.
    I think the coastal Levant was mostly J2a during the Bronze Age so this complicates things further... The only paternal markers I'd associate with Greek ancestry are E-V13 and J2b (which aren't all that common either).
    That's why I think it was mostly men marrying foreign women, even Ezra the scribe complained about it at some point and it only makes sense given the fact that Jewishness was transmitted patrilineally back then.
    Marriage prohibitions were mainly designed to keep the Jewish people alive, it really took grotesque proportions... My paternal great-grandparents were 1st cousins for instance (and I'll spare you the whole ordeal about arranged marriages, this was pretty much the rule for thousands of years).

    Except that a lot of these results hold true for southern Italians as well, (Calabrians, for example, in my husband's case and others, but also people from Bari that I know of first hand) and there was no Phoenician or Punic/Carthaginian settlement there. I think we're talking about older common ancestry, dating back to the Neolithic, and reinforced in southern Italy by the Cretans and later by the Greek settlements of the first millennium BC.

    After all, you had some Balkan people still very Oetzi like way into the Iron Age, and I think Sicily, and perhaps much of far southern Italy as well, was not very impacted by the Indo-European migrations. The only reason why some mainland Greeks can be fitted into the three population Lazaridis model is, in my opinion, because they were impacted to some degree by the Slavic migrations which had no impact on Italy north or south. I do think there might have been some small amount of Punic input mixed with Berber in the Muslim settlers, particularly in Sicily, but also in other areas of the south, either through their short lived reigns there or through the relocation of Moorish soldiers on the peninsula to remove the threat they posed in Sicily. There was a famous settlement of them near Foggia and another one near Naples.
    Indeed, it actually makes more sense if this Levantine component was more ancient because I'd expect mild IBD sharing if they really were descended from Phoenicians (who were basically the Judeans' civilized counterpart, pretty much the same people in a sense).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    Aberdeen, my allergies are killing me right now, but they're not to the Khazar theory. :) I just don't think it's supported by either the preponderance of the genetic evidence or the historical evidence.

    I've also said that I think there's certainly the possibility that there was some input from the Khazars, although as you point out, only the upper classes seem to have converted. I do agree that there were Jews in that area, and that they may have fed into the emerging "Ashkenazi" ethnicity, but there's very little concrete data about their numbers and movements that I've ever been able to find.

    I think there's quite a bit of documentation for the French and Rhineland Jewish communities.

    This article provides a timeline for the establishment of these communities:
    http://www.geni.com/projects/Jews-of...-Lorraine/8610

    This is another article on the establishment of the Rhineland communities:
    http://judaisme.sdv.fr/histoire/hist...is/history.htm

    The Rhineland massacres during the First Crusade:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhineland_massacres

    The Crusades and the Jewish community:
    http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/.../crusades.html

    Massacres related to the plague:
    http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/jewis...blackdeath.asp

    Movement of some European Jews to Poland, where Yiddish, a dialect of German, is said by some to have first coalesced:
    http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/...jw/Poland.html

    Elkaim attempted to refute this evidence, in my opinion unconvincingly.
    Most of that information is about persecution of Jews during the Medieval period. There's some indication of small Jewish settlements in France and the Rhineland, but Jews don't seem to have been nearly as common in those areas as in Poland and Russia, at least not until the late Medieval period. And the fact that at least some of the Polish Jews spoke a dialect based partly on German certainly doesn't limit their origin point to somewhere within the boundaries of present day Germany. There were a lot of German speaking people in Eastern Europe until after WWII. I still think that most European Jews are descended from Jews who migrated from the Middle East north into Russia, then gradually moved west.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Semitic Duwa View Post
    I'm not "allergic" to such a connection... In fact, I'm pretty sure that most AJs would be delighted to find out that they have Turkic roots, most of the people who're pushing this theory are AJs themselves (Koestler, Sand, etc).

    The main problem with the Khazar model is that in any case, Mizrahim appear more "Khazar" than Western Jews, if we follow Elhaik's methodology which basically uses Armenians & Georgians as proxies for Khazar ancestry (don't laugh, he really did it).

    Also, when subscribing to such a theory you'll find yourself at loss when trying to explain the incredible similarity between Ashkenazim and, say, Syrian Jews (I have Syrian and Lebanese Jewish relatives on RF myself, and I'm just half-Jewish).

    The more we try to uncover traces of Khazar ancestry, the scarcer the evidence for it... Just read Rootsi et al. 2013's paper about R1a-M582, a marker which was long taken as actual proof of Khazar ancestry in Ashkenazim!
    Please read what I actually wrote. I think the Ashkenazi are descended from Jews who migrated from the Middle East into southern Russia with minimal gene flow from the Khazar empire. In any case, the Khazar empire may have been ruled by a Turkish elite, but it was probably made up primarily of Russians, Armenians and Georgians - the Turkish nomads were quite good at conquering huge empires made up primarily of non-Turks. Even modern Turkey isn't primarily Turkish in the genetic sense.

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    Did you guys see this study: Admixture Estimation in a Founder Population. Y. Banda, ... http://www.ashg.org/2013meeting/abst...f130123362.htm They presented results involving 3,366 Ashkenazi Jews (AJ) that were genotyped at 674,000 SNPs. They included surrogate Middle Eastern, Italian, French, Russian, and Caucasus subgroups to represent the ancestral populations. And the results were: "For the AJ, we estimated mean ancestral proportions of 0.380, 0.305, 0.113, 0.041 and 0.148 for Middle Eastern, Italian, French, Russian and Caucasus ancestry, respectively."

    I'd like to see this study repeated with different surrogate ancestral populations. I could see it plausibly getting similar results. I wonder if the 15% Caucasus ancestry would persist, and if so maybe that might represent the mysterious Khazar component.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post

    I think the rule comes from Old Testament, however Jews understood this rule, as " One can't charge an Interest to his family, close kin. Making money of gentiles and not related Jews was OK.
    Here is a history of money by Niall Ferguson.
    http://www.eupedia.com/forum/threads...l=1#post434448
    Thats a great documentary Lebrok, Thanks for the link and it explains so well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Semitic Duwa View Post
    I think the recent study you're referring to is Fernandez et al. 2014, which obtained MtDNA data from PPNB samples... It basically shows that Ashkenazim and Cypriots retain markers which have disappeared in the Near East.
    Or perhaps is it Haber et al 2013?
    This was significant for me because I've been saying for years now that Cyprus might've retained most of the pre-islamic Levant's genetic make-up.
    Kind of what Sardinia is to Europe in a sense.

    I mean, look at the picture emerging from genome-wide studies of Neolithic European samples... Population change is a reality, we've stumbled on a few surprises and I very much doubt continuity will ever regain the popularity it once enjoyed in academic circles (and that's coming from someone who speaks to archeologists on a daily basis).

    No reason to believe that the Near East is any different, especially considering the data we have (take African admixture for instance, Moorjani et al. 2011 is very informative here)... I'm expecting even more surprises when we get our hands on Near Eastern and Eastern Mediterranean samples (as Angela said, the Iron Age Thracian shows that there were Ötzi-like people living in this area even during the Iron Age, that's a red flag if you ask me).

    What's IBD?
    You know they say that the shortest questions are the hardest to answer? :)
    IBD = Identical By Descent [segment] (read about it, if you tested with 23&Me that's what enables you to find RF matches).

    Alright thanks for the answers, yes the study I was talking about was the 2013 Haber study, wait, there's a new study? May you perhaps post the link?

    P.S Alright, but who do typical AJs share IBD segments with?

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    Quote Originally Posted by JS Bach View Post
    Did you guys see this study: Admixture Estimation in a Founder Population. Y. Banda, ... http://www.ashg.org/2013meeting/abst...f130123362.htm They presented results involving 3,366 Ashkenazi Jews (AJ) that were genotyped at 674,000 SNPs. They included surrogate Middle Eastern, Italian, French, Russian, and Caucasus subgroups to represent the ancestral populations. And the results were: "For the AJ, we estimated mean ancestral proportions of 0.380, 0.305, 0.113, 0.041 and 0.148 for Middle Eastern, Italian, French, Russian and Caucasus ancestry, respectively."

    I'd like to see this study repeated with different surrogate ancestral populations. I could see it plausibly getting similar results. I wonder if the 15% Caucasus ancestry would persist, and if so maybe that might represent the mysterious Khazar component.


    Very interesting! I wonder if it's reliable?

    If it is, it basically says that unlike the African Americans, the AJ admixture is ancient (no surprise) and that the typical AJ ancestry is from the most predominant to the least:
    1. Middle Eastern or Middle Eastern like
    2. Italian or Italian like ancestry
    3. French or French like ancestry
    4. Russian or Russian like ancestry
    5. Caucasian or Caucasian like ancestry

    I'm no expert so I don't know if it's the right way to interpret the results, but I suppose someone who has knowledge concerning such subjects will go over this study and post his interpretation soon. :-P

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    Most of that information is about persecution of Jews during the Medieval period. There's some indication of small Jewish settlements in France and the Rhineland, but Jews don't seem to have been nearly as common in those areas as in Poland and Russia, at least not until the late Medieval period. And the fact that at least some of the Polish Jews spoke a dialect based partly on German certainly doesn't limit their origin point to somewhere within the boundaries of present day Germany. There were a lot of German speaking people in Eastern Europe until after WWII. I still think that most European Jews are descended from Jews who migrated from the Middle East north into Russia, then gradually moved west.

    I probably wasn't clear about it, but the links to the sites about the persecutions were mainly to support the hypothesis that the "genetic bottleneck" which affected the Ashkenazim but not the Sephardim could have taken place at this time and in this location. It's a good fit for it genetically, because the bottleneck has been estimated to have taken place around 1000 AD if I remember correctly. The articles also serve to show the number of Jewish communities that existed from 800 AD in this area. However, I also provided other links.

    There's also this from Medieval Germany: An Encyclopedia, Edited by John M. Jeep, a google book:
    "In the ninth century there were only a few dozen Jewish families in Germany, probably a few hundred in the tenth century. It has been estimated that there were as many as 4,000 to 5,000 Jews by the end of the tenth century, and 20,000 to 25,000 Jews by the end of the eleventh century..."
    http://books.google.com/books?id=p4u...neland&f=false

    Now, I'm always a little leery about population figures from this period, but I think it might be safe to say that there were a substantial number of Jews in the Rhineland and neighboring areas of France by the end of the eleventh century even if you halve the figures.

    (There were also substantial communities in Italy, and France outside of Alsace, and Spain at the time. The Italian communities remained relatively undisturbed, but the French Jews were expelled in 1394, although there had been numerous expulsions and recalls since the beginning of the 1000's. They had to go somewhere; there is no indication that they all converted, and there's no indication that they went to Muslim lands. At least, I'm not aware of any. There are also the even better known expulsions involving the Spanish Jews, although in that case a high percentage of them went to North Africa or to regions ruled by Muslims and form the basis for the Sephardic communities. (and perhaps even to the New World. There's the case of the converso element in southwestern American "Hispanics" for example.) Even when they went to the Netherlands, they maintained their separate ritual and the use of Ladino, and seem to have practiced a great degree of endogamy even with regard to the Ashkenaz, a term meaning German Jew by the way.)

    Now, this isn't to say that some Jews didn't return after the various "pogroms", because there is every indication they did. After the first crusade, for instance, there seems to have been an establishment of very small dispersed communities in the Rhineland, although they greatly diminish after the progroms surrounding the Black Death. This is a map of the Jewish communities, all small, from 1349 in the area of the Rhineland:
    http://pages.uoregon.edu/dluebke/Ref...ities1349.html

    Then there's this from the Jewish Virtual Library linked to above:
    There is no specific date that marks Jewish immigration to Poland. A journal account of Ibrahim ibn Jakub, a Jewish traveler, merchant and diplomat from Spain mentions Cracow and the First Duke of Poland, Mieszko I. More Jews arrived during the period of the first Crusade in 1098, while leaving persecution in Bohemia, according to the Chronicler of Prague. There is also archeological evidence, coins from the period with inscriptions in Hebrew, revealing that other Jewish merchants traveled to Poland in the 12th century. The coins may have belonged to 12th century Jewish traders, Holekhei Rusyah (travelers to Russia).

    While persecution took place across Europe during the Crusades, in the 13th century, Poland served as a haven for European Jewry because of its relative tolerance. During this period, Poland began its colonization process. It suffered great losses from Mongol invasions in 1241 and therefore encouraged Jewish immigrants to settle the towns and villages. Immigrants flocked to Poland from Bohemia-Moravia, Germany, Italy, Spain and colonies in the Crimea. No central authority could stop the immigration. Refugees from Germany brought with them German and Hebrew dialects that eventually became Yiddish.

    Now, I'm aware of the criticism of this theory from Jits Van Straten, but I didn't find it very convincing. The fact is that while the contemporaneous fragments we have from Jewish sources often indicate movement by the survivors to other "German" areas, some of those areas were indeed to the east, and some are in areas that are now part of Poland. I don't think the fact that these people didn't immediately make a beeline for Poland necessarily means that there wasn't a gradual movement east that was accelerated every time there was another persecution, especially given the favorable climate for them in the Poland of that time. Of course, it's far from a settled matter given that we don't have specific documentary evidence of the establishment of these kinds of communities in Poland by the exiles.
    http://www.mankindquarterly.org/samp...Migrations.pdf

    Also, when I said I had looked for documentation of the existence of any signficant Jewish settlements in Poland or the Ukraine before, say, 1000 AD, and the proposed movements of Jewish exiles from the west, I was specifically thinking of this Van Straten article. I thought perhaps he would include such data, but he advances no alternative hypothesis to explain the presence of Jewish communities in Poland.

    In that regard, have you found documentary evidence of such settlements? There is that teasing reference above to Crimean Jews also moving to Poland, but that's the only thing I've ever seen, and there's no citation for it. I'm not playing gotcha here, as I hope you realize. I've looked, and I've never found any. Certainly, data like that would have to be factored into the equation.

    I do also now get how your hypothesis differs from the "Khazarian" one.


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    Quote Originally Posted by JS Bach View Post
    Did you guys see this study: Admixture Estimation in a Founder Population. Y. Banda, ... http://www.ashg.org/2013meeting/abst...f130123362.htm They presented results involving 3,366 Ashkenazi Jews (AJ) that were genotyped at 674,000 SNPs. They included surrogate Middle Eastern, Italian, French, Russian, and Caucasus subgroups to represent the ancestral populations. And the results were: "For the AJ, we estimated mean ancestral proportions of 0.380, 0.305, 0.113, 0.041 and 0.148 for Middle Eastern, Italian, French, Russian and Caucasus ancestry, respectively."

    I'd like to see this study repeated with different surrogate ancestral populations. I could see it plausibly getting similar results. I wonder if the 15% Caucasus ancestry would persist, and if so maybe that might represent the mysterious Khazar component.
    I'm going to try to find the actual study and take a look. Off the cuff, I'd say that if they had that much French and Russian and Italian (unless they were all Sicilians and far southern Italians), I don't see how they wind up with virtually 0 WHG in Lazaridis et al.

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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Greg Cochran (co-author of “The 10,000 Year Explosion”) has an article on his blog today titled “Ashkenazi Ancestry”: http://westhunt.wordpress.com/2014/0...nazi-ancestry/ His take seems to be that Ashkenazi Jews (AJ) are about half Middle Eastern and half European. He says: “From other data (mtDNA) , and from the fact that you see almost zero WHG or ANE in Ashkenazi autosomal genes, one can conclude that the European admixture was mostly Italian, with some southern French.”

    This, to me seems somewhat at odds with this Dodecad “K12a Spreadsheet”: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...21tdkpldWxwVmc
    which breaks down a sample of 18 AJs as being: 29.5% Mediterranean, 13.3% North European, 34.8% Caucasus, 13.2% Southwest Asian, and 4.3% Northwest African, and another sample of 17 AJs as having a similar breakdown. This clustering suggests to me as being much more than “almost zero WHG or ANE”, although Cochran may be exaggerating there -- and Italians on that spreadsheet do have a lot of the "Caucasus" component (very unlike the Northwest European samples).

    In one of Cochran’s comments to the article, he states: “Their mtDNA is unambiguously Italian, Y -chromosomes mostly middle Eastern, which data autosomal analysis fully confirms.” Again, I wonder whether that AJ Caucasus component is more Middle Eastern, Italian, or more Caucasus mountains?

    He also seems to think that the AJ population hit a bottleneck of only about 350 individuals, and that this occurred at around 900 A.D.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JS Bach View Post

    He also seems to think that the AJ population hit a bottleneck of only about 350 individuals, and that this occurred at around 900 A.D.
    that would be very strange if it was true, since the y-dna of AJ-s reflects very well their historic periods of mixing with Caananites (Phoenicians E-M123), mixing with Greeks (E-V13, J2a), mixing in Eastern Europe (R1a), mixing in Mesopotamia (J1) etc. It is pretty hard to get that after a bottleneck of 350 in 900 AD. Maybe marrying inside a small community brings slow growth, which I guess could be mistaken for a bottleneck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JS Bach View Post
    Greg Cochran (co-author of “The 10,000 Year Explosion”) has an article on his blog today titled “Ashkenazi Ancestry”: http://westhunt.wordpress.com/2014/0...nazi-ancestry/ His take seems to be that Ashkenazi Jews (AJ) are about half Middle Eastern and half European. He says: “From other data (mtDNA) , and from the fact that you see almost zero WHG or ANE in Ashkenazi autosomal genes, one can conclude that the European admixture was mostly Italian, with some southern French.”

    This, to me seems somewhat at odds with this Dodecad “K12a Spreadsheet”: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...21tdkpldWxwVmc
    which breaks down a sample of 18 AJs as being: 29.5% Mediterranean, 13.3% North European, 34.8% Caucasus, 13.2% Southwest Asian, and 4.3% Northwest African, and another sample of 17 AJs as having a similar breakdown. This clustering suggests to me as being much more than “almost zero WHG or ANE”, although Cochran may be exaggerating there -- and Italians on that spreadsheet do have a lot of the "Caucasus" component (very unlike the Northwest European samples).

    In one of Cochran’s comments to the article, he states: “Their mtDNA is unambiguously Italian, Y -chromosomes mostly middle Eastern, which data autosomal analysis fully confirms.” Again, I wonder whether that AJ Caucasus component is more Middle Eastern, Italian, or more Caucasus mountains?

    He also seems to think that the AJ population hit a bottleneck of only about 350 individuals, and that this occurred at around 900 A.D.
    The problem with Greg's analysis is that if Ashkenazim really were 50% Near Eastern and 50% Italian, you'd expect much more WHG... Which obviously isn't what we're seeing here.
    Heck, he even says "with some southern french", which makes the whole thing sound even more outlandish!
    He blatantly contradicts himself here, before acknowledging the fact that "The Middle East isn't what it used to be - more South Arabian and African ancestry"... I guess straight answers just aren't what they used to be.

    Also, his claim that Ashkenazi MtDNA is Italian (based on Costa et al. 2013) died a quick death with the recent Fernandez et al. 2014 paper, so he's out of touch with what's going on in this field right now.

    Even funnier is the fact that he seems to assume some sort of correlation between uniparental lineages frequencies and MtDNA... Which is ridiculous of course, since Ashkenazim are ~90% identical to Sephardim who have very different uniparental lineages frequencies (especially if we focus on MtDNA haplogroups).

    All in all, I find the Italian model wholly unconvincing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kamani View Post
    that would be very strange if it was true, since the y-dna of AJ-s reflects very well their historic periods of mixing with Caananites (Phoenicians E-M123), mixing with Greeks (E-V13, J2a), mixing in Eastern Europe (R1a), mixing in Mesopotamia (J1) etc. It is pretty hard to get that after a bottleneck of 350 in 900 AD. Maybe marrying inside a small community brings slow growth, which I guess could be mistaken for a bottleneck.
    In fact, E-M34, J1 and J2a probably all were to be found in Canaan at non-negligible frequencies (I think the coastal Levant was mostly J2a during the Bronze Age).

    E-V13 could possibly hint towards Greek admixture, the problem though is that it isn't all that common and that it seems to have spread with the Neolithic first & foremost (in fact, I'd be ready to bet it was born in N. Africa since all of its sister-clades are mainly found in Africa).

    R1a in Jews is most common in Levites, and they belong to a subclade of Z93: M582. Rootsi et al. 2013 showed that this marker is Near Eastern (found in Azeris, Iranians and Kurds), it's a classic Indo-Iranian marker... Non-Levites usually test positive for another Z93 subclade (Z2123).
    So far, I've only seen a handful of Jewish individuals who tested positive for one of R1a's Slavic subclades and this was L1029(-A, the "Jewish" subclade), which is commonly found in Central Europe (Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia)... Which isn't a big deal since Jews are overrepresented in most databases.

    So most of the Jewish Y-DNA actually comes from the Near East (same thing for R1b in Jews), and a huge majority of these lineages can be traced back to the Levant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JS Bach View Post
    Greg Cochran (co-author of “The 10,000 Year Explosion”) has an article on his blog today titled “Ashkenazi Ancestry”: http://westhunt.wordpress.com/2014/0...nazi-ancestry/ His take seems to be that Ashkenazi Jews (AJ) are about half Middle Eastern and half European. He says: “From other data (mtDNA) , and from the fact that you see almost zero WHG or ANE in Ashkenazi autosomal genes, one can conclude that the European admixture was mostly Italian, with some southern French.”

    This, to me seems somewhat at odds with this Dodecad “K12a Spreadsheet”: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...21tdkpldWxwVmc
    which breaks down a sample of 18 AJs as being: 29.5% Mediterranean, 13.3% North European, 34.8% Caucasus, 13.2% Southwest Asian, and 4.3% Northwest African, and another sample of 17 AJs as having a similar breakdown. This clustering suggests to me as being much more than “almost zero WHG or ANE”, although Cochran may be exaggerating there -- and Italians on that spreadsheet do have a lot of the "Caucasus" component (very unlike the Northwest European samples).

    In one of Cochran’s comments to the article, he states: “Their mtDNA is unambiguously Italian, Y -chromosomes mostly middle Eastern, which data autosomal analysis fully confirms.” Again, I wonder whether that AJ Caucasus component is more Middle Eastern, Italian, or more Caucasus mountains?

    He also seems to think that the AJ population hit a bottleneck of only about 350 individuals, and that this occurred at around 900 A.D.
    I'll be interested to see the Carmi paper(s) when they come out, particularly as they used whole genomes. However,what they posit and what Cochran is repeating is, and has been for quite a while the leading hypothesis for Ashkenazi ethnogenesis. (i.e. a movement from the Italian peninsula north to the Rhineland, a bottleneck there straddling somehow the millennial mark, and then a gradual movement of many of them to the east. So, there's nothing new there.)

    It still has to correlate, as Semitic Duwa has pointed out, with the Lazaridis et al results showing virtually nil WHG results in the modern Ashenazim. Just to add a gloss to what he stated, today's Sicilians can indeed be fitted, like the Jews, as an EEF/ANE population. Modern Northern Italians and Tuscans cannot. Yet, the Jewish population that then moved into the Rhineland spent the majority of its sojourn in northern Italy. If Carmi et al are correct, the mixing would have to have taken place in Sicily and far southern Italy before the move to northern Italy, and they would have had to have started practicing strict endogamy there in the south.

    Or, they may be misinterpreting their data. I could make a pretty good argument, I think, that the populations of Sicily and far southern Italy of that time were largely indistinguishable from those of the Aegean and Greek western Turkey, and so a possibility that Semitic Duwa had previously raised is still possible, i.e. that the mixing took place in the Near East itself, with possibly the Philistines, but definitely during the Hellenistic period. It remains to be seen if Carmi et al even tested Aegean Greeks, or Cretans, or Anatolian Greeks.
    Ed. Also, it's extremely important that a comprehensive IBD analysis is done with all these populations.

    (Just as an aside, I long ago raised, to vociferous opposition, I might add :), that based on the results of the Ralph and Coop et al paper, it was my opinion that the Italian populations, not just those of Sardinia, harbored very old genes which had been more diluted and recombined in other parts of Europe and that this was part of the reason that earlier incarnations of the 23andme calculator found such high levels of "Italian" in north Africa, the Levant, parts of Greece and Spain etc. I think the change to the modern "European" genomes in southern Europe and even Central Europe to some degree may have taken place quite a bit later than has been proposed. The survival of a very "Oetzi like" Thracian into the Iron Age supports that contention, in my opinion. Certainly, I think there was some change in mainland Greece due to "Slavic" migrations, even if they weren't large scale changes. See: Ralph and Coop et al, based on a very sophisticated IBD analysis:
    http://www.plosbiology.org/;jsession...319810AA6287BA)

    In terms of the R1a1 yDNA, Semitic Duwa is quite correct. We now know that the Jewish version is not "Slavic". As to the mtDNA, the analyses are sadly lacking. The only way to make judgments is through the use of full sequences of the mtDNA, which has not been done, and which is why Costa et al is totally unconvincing, in my opinion. The same applies to mtDNA analyses of the Etruscans. With the truncated data being used, it's impossible to determine whether those Etruscan sequences came to Italy in the first millennium B.C. or five thousand years earlier in the Neolithic, as the authors who originally proposed a Bronze Age migration from Anatolia have themselves stated in the most recent studies. None of it is as yet settled. Just another wrinkle is that a study of Cretan mtDNA shows it's basically the same as "European" mtDNA, as is, by the way, most of the DNA in the Levant. (the major difference being the amount of U4 and U5 in Europe, and the higher levels of L in the Near East.) The differences seem to stem mostly from differences in the yDNA.

    As to the calculator results, I personally don't think they can tell us much about ancient population movements. As Dienekes was at pains to point out many times, but which was largely ignored, these are autosomal components or "clusters" according to where they are most prevalent geographically today. They "cover" older strata or layers. This was specifically pointed out by Dienekes in a number of his threads from 2012. I'll just provide a few of the ones where he specifically discussed it, since this is really off topic for the thread.
    http://dienekes.blogspot.com/2012/08...-k12b-and.html
    http://dienekes.blogspot.com/2012/09...decad-k7b.html

    ( I think some of what he pointed out here is amazing, given what we are now learning from very recent papers.

    • Northwest African appears to be Caucasus + a minority Sub Saharan


    • Gedrosia appears to be Caucasus + a slice of Siberian
    • East Asian on the other hand, appears to be mostly Southeast Asian + minority Siberian
    • Atlantic Med appears to be Caucasus + a slice of North European
    • North European appears to be Atlantic Med + Gedrosia with a slice of Siberian
    • South Asian appears to be Caucasus + East Asian
    • East African appears to be Sub Saharan + minority Caucasus
    • Caucasus appears Atlantic Med + Gedrosia + slices of Northwest African and Southwest Asian)



    That isn't to say that the calculators can't tell you things about your own ancestry. They're very good for letting you see how you compare to other people of your ethnicity. Let's say, for example, as in my case, that you know your ethnicty, or ethnicities, or at least think you do. You then get your 23andme data or Family Finder data and run it through the calculators. Then, you can compare your figures to the population averages that he provides for each calculator. If you're doing the Globe 13, for example, just go to Dodecad and search for the Globe 13 spreadsheet. All the population averages for the academic populations as well as for the study participants are listed. You can check how you compare. They might confirm what you believe, or they might refute it.

    (If you really are interested in how the calculators were developed, and what they can and can't show, you can use the search engine on his sites. They're pretty good. His sites are also a good reference for discussions of numerous genetics and archaeology papers.)
    Last edited by Angela; 26-06-14 at 20:21.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Semitic Duwa View Post
    The problem with Greg's analysis is that if Ashkenazim really were 50% Near Eastern and 50% Italian, you'd expect much more WHG... Which obviously isn't what we're seeing here.
    Heck, he even says "with some southern french", which makes the whole thing sound even more outlandish!
    He blatantly contradicts himself here, before acknowledging the fact that "The Middle East isn't what it used to be - more South Arabian and African ancestry"... I guess straight answers just aren't what they used to be.

    Also, his claim that Ashkenazi MtDNA is Italian (based on Costa et al. 2013) died a quick death with the recent Fernandez et al. 2014 paper, so he's out of touch with what's going on in this field right now.

    Even funnier is the fact that he seems to assume some sort of correlation between uniparental lineages frequencies and MtDNA... Which is ridiculous of course, since Ashkenazim are ~90% identical to Sephardim who have very different uniparental lineages frequencies (especially if we focus on MtDNA haplogroups).

    All in all, I find the Italian model wholly unconvincing.

    Do you have a link for Fernandez et al. 2014 paper? I didn't even hear of it, I thought no study yet was made in response to Costa. :-P

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    Quote Originally Posted by Semitic Duwa View Post
    In fact, E-M34, J1 and J2a probably all were to be found in Canaan at non-negligible frequencies (I think the coastal Levant was mostly J2a during the Bronze Age).

    E-V13 could possibly hint towards Greek admixture, the problem though is that it isn't all that common and that it seems to have spread with the Neolithic first & foremost (in fact, I'd be ready to bet it was born in N. Africa since all of its sister-clades are mainly found in Africa).

    R1a in Jews is most common in Levites, and they belong to a subclade of Z93: M582. Rootsi et al. 2013 showed that this marker is Near Eastern (found in Azeris, Iranians and Kurds), it's a classic Indo-Iranian marker... Non-Levites usually test positive for another Z93 subclade (Z2123).
    So far, I've only seen a handful of Jewish individuals who tested positive for one of R1a's Slavic subclades and this was L1029(-A, the "Jewish" subclade), which is commonly found in Central Europe (Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia)... Which isn't a big deal since Jews are overrepresented in most databases.

    So most of the Jewish Y-DNA actually comes from the Near East (same thing for R1b in Jews), and a huge majority of these lineages can be traced back to the Levant.

    My paternal haplogroup is E-M35, I know it originated in East Africa about 20,000 years ago and reached the Mediterranean region after the Ice age, I think today it's most common among Berbers in North Africa, does it reach any considerable frequency in the Middle East and/or Europe? What's the frequency of E-M35 among AJs?

    Do AJs, Maltese, Sicilians, Cypriots, Greeks and Greek Islanders get around the same WHG admixture? Are they all pretty much entirely EEF with some ANE? Or not?


    P.S I'm glad there's someone like you who knows a thing or 2 about genetics, I'm just an amateur but I'm very interested in it because I've always been confused, who am I as an AJ? My recent ancestry is German, Polish and Polish Galitzianer but according to Jewish tradition the AJs descend from the Levantine Israelites, was there any admixture with Europeans, if so then how much and from where? I'm sorry if I'm bombarding you with questions such as these, it's just that I never really had anyone to ask these questions. :)

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Doe View Post
    My paternal haplogroup is E-M35, I know it originated in East Africa about 20,000 years ago and reached the Mediterranean region after the Ice age, I think today it's most common among Berbers in North Africa, does it reach any considerable frequency in the Middle East and/or Europe? What's the frequency of E-M35 among AJs?
    E-M35 is the ancestral version of "everybody". In Europe it is rare, but its "nephew" E-v13 is quite common in the Balkans/Italy, possibly the mutation happened there and back-migrated in the Levant with the Greeks (after Trojan War, Philistines, Romans etc).
    Subclade E-M123 possibly happened in the Levant sometime in the late Paleolithic/Neolithic and some say it was big with the Canaanite/Phoenicians. Although it is also spread in small percentages all over Italy, Iberia, Balkans, and Turkey, in areas where there were no Phoenicians or AJ-s and most E-M123* is found in Iberia, so most probably it came in Europe with the Neolithic farmers.
    Subclade E-M81 is the North African mutation that happened on the E-m35 that stayed in North-Africa. In Europe it is common in Iberians because of the Moors and other late migrations from Northwest-Africa.

    So the birth of Civilization is a big mess of various tribes of E1b1b going around the Mediteranean coast, mixing and fighting with each-other.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kamani View Post
    E-M35 is the ancestral version of "everybody". In Europe it is rare, but its "nephew" E-v13 is quite common in the Balkans/Italy, possibly the mutation happened there and back-migrated in the Levant with the Greeks (after Trojan War, Philistines, Romans etc).
    Subclade E-M123 possibly happened in the Levant sometime in the late Paleolithic/Neolithic and some say it was big with the Canaanite/Phoenicians. Although it is also spread in small percentages all over Italy, Iberia, Balkans, and Turkey, in areas where there were no Phoenicians or AJ-s and most E-M123* is found in Iberia, so most probably it came in Europe with the Neolithic farmers.
    Subclade E-M81 is the North African mutation that happened on the E-m35 that stayed in North-Africa. In Europe it is common in Iberians because of the Moors and other late migrations from Northwest-Africa.

    So the birth of Civilization is a big mess of various tribes of E1b1b going around the Mediteranean coast, mixing and fighting with each-other.


    Alright, thanks, where is E-M35.1 most common in the world? And where is it most common in Europe? And what's it's frequency among AJs?

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Doe View Post
    Alright, thanks, where is E-M35.1 most common in the world? And where is it most common in Europe? And what's it's frequency among AJs?
    those I'm not sure. Maybe someone else can help this guy..

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    Quote Originally Posted by kamani View Post
    those I'm not sure. Maybe someone else can help this guy..

    Okay, thanks anyway mate. :)

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by kamani View Post
    Subclade E-M81 is the North African mutation that happened on the E-m35 that stayed in North-Africa. In Europe it is common in Iberians because of the Moors and other late migrations from Northwest-Africa.
    Quite unlikely, since its declining west-to-east instead of south-to-north distribution pattern does not follow historical patterns. Since it's also over 5000 years old, there is nothing preventing it from actually being of ancient introduction into the peninsula.

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    I have another question

    I have another question. If it's unlikely there was admixture between Jews and Italians, then how come on Gedmatch AJs and Italians tend to be close, and why did Behar include Tuscans and Abruzzo Italians in the non Jewish group that was closest to AJs?
    Thanks in advance.

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