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Thread: 37 mtDNA sequences from Minoan Crete

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.

    Arrow 37 mtDNA sequences from Minoan Crete

    Just released: A European population in Minoan Bronze Age Crete, by Hughey et al.

    Abstract

    The first advanced Bronze Age civilization of Europe was established by the Minoans about 5,000 years before present. Since Sir Arthur Evans exposed the Minoan civic centre of Knossos, archaeologists have speculated on the origin of the founders of the civilization. Evans proposed a North African origin; Cycladic, Balkan, Anatolian and Middle Eastern origins have also been proposed. Here we address the question of the origin of the Minoans by analysing mitochondrial DNA from Minoan osseous remains from a cave ossuary in the Lassithi plateau of Crete dated 4,400–3,700 years before present. Shared haplotypes, principal component and pairwise distance analyses refute the Evans North African hypothesis. Minoans show the strongest relationships with Neolithic and modern European populations and with the modern inhabitants of the Lassithi plateau. Our data are compatible with the hypothesis of an autochthonous development of the Minoan civilization by the descendants of the Neolithic settlers of the island.

    Here is the haplogroups breakdown for the 37 samples.

    - H : 32.4% (12 samples*, including one H5, one H7, one H13a1a)
    - T : 18.9% (7 samples, including one T1, three T2, one T3 and one T5)
    - K : 16.2% (6 sample)
    - HV : 8.1% (3 samples)
    - I : 8.1% (3 sample, all I5)
    - U : 5.4% (2 samples, including one U5a)
    - J : 5.4% (2 samples, including a J2)
    - R0 : 2.7% (1 sample)
    - W : 2.7% (1 sample)
    - X : 2.7% (1 sample, most probably X2)

    * among the 9 unidentified subclades of H, there could be one H1k, one H5 or H1k, and one H1a3c or H1t1aa.

    From the paper:

    Quote Originally Posted by Hughey et al.
    The greatest percentage of shared Minoan haplotypes was observed with European populations, particularly with individuals from Northern and Western Europe (26.98% and 29.28%, respectively) (Figs 2–4; Supplementary Table S7). Notably, in Fig. 4, a gradient can be observed, with the lowest affinity for Minoans found with Northern African populations and the percentage of haplotype sharing increasing as we move through the Middle East, Caucasus and the Mediterranean islands, southern Europe and mainland Europe (Fig. 4a,b).
    This affinity of Minoan maternal lineages with the modern populations of Northern and Western Europe are interesting because the shared mt-haplogroups happen to be exactly those I have identified as Indo-European mtDNA. I have linked H5a, H7, T, U3, U5a1 and X2 with the spread of R1b in the Bronze Age, and I, U2, U4 and W with that of R1a.

    Modern Crete has a relatively high frequency of R1b (15%) and R1a (9%), and the highest local percentage of R1b ever observed in Greece justly happens to be in the Lasithi Plateau (36.6% R1b according to Martinez et al. 2007), where these 37 ancient samples are from. Apart from U3 (probably, since there is still one unidentified U) all the mt-haplogroups corresponding to R1b were found.

    The association with R1a is more shaky as it relies solely on two rare haplogroups : I and W. I5 has been found in such places as northern Germany, Italy, Bulgaria, North Ossetia (actually a R1b hotspot, not a R1a one) and the Arabian peninsula. But how else could the presence of nearly 10% of R1a in Crete be explained, if not by the Indo-Europeans ? Ultimately all R1a is thought to be of Indo-European origin. In this case it is hard to attribute its presence in Crete to the Slavic migrations. That was limited to continental Greece, mostly in the north. R1a must have arrived earlier in Greece, during the Bronze Age, along with R1b.

    R1b almost certainly arrived in the early Bronze Age, around the time the Minoan civilisation appeared. If we follow the diffusion of the Bronze Age, R1b is thought to have started invading the Balkans from 4200 BCE, reaching Bulgaria circa 3300 BCE (Ezero Culture), and Greece circa 3000 BCE. The Bronze Age started c. 2700 BCE in Crete. Although there was already an early Minoan culture there before (since 3650 BCE), the beginning of the true Minoan civilization is usually associated with the start of the Bronze Age c. 2700 BCE. Chronologically, it all fits. R1b people brought bronze working with them to Crete and took over the existing Minoan culture, blending with the local people.


    What I find surprising with this new link between the Indo-Europeans and Minoan Crete is that Minoan people were usually depicted as having black curly haired and half of the time as being very darked skinned - the opposite of what is expected of the fair-haired, fair-skinned Indo-European people. This is why some people have suggested that the Minoan came from North Africa, along with the bulk of Greek Y-DNA E1b1b. This study didn't find any African mtDNA, but it isn't really surprising since there is very little African mtDNA in modern Greece and even E1b1b is rather sparse in modern Crete, especially in the Lasithi Plateau (5%).

    I believe that the dark pigmentation came with the J2 people from the Fertile Crescent, although it is too early to say whether they came before or after R1a and R1b Indo-Europeans. J2 could have come in the (late) Neolithic just as it could have arrived in the late Bronze Age, following the collapse of the Minoan civilisation and the rise of the Sea Peoples. The latter is not impossible considering the strong association of J2 with seafaring civilisations (Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Venetians, Portuguese).

    However, since Neolithic samples were limited to G2a, I2a and E1b1b samples, and that regions with high frequencies of these haplogroups (e.g. Sardinia, which may be the best reference population to compare with Neolithic Europeans) have fairer skin and less curly hair than people in the Fertile Crescent, I would suppose that J2 was already part of the Minoan admixture. My original assumption was that the Minoan were mostly a hybrid of R1b and J2 male lineages. The mitochondrial lineages in this study that could correspond to the maternal side of J2 are R0, HV, K, and some subclades of H, J and T.

    Minoan language remains a mystery since Linear A has not yet be deciphered. So we have no clue as to whether it was Indo-European or not. Either alternative is equally possible. The Minoans could have inherited their language either from R1b+R1a Indo-Europeans or from J2 non-IE.
    Last edited by Maciamo; 15-05-13 at 10:28.
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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Most Cretans today are j2, some 37%, nearly 40% of them...this accounts for the original Minoan males and their dark haired locks, the Dorians (R1b Greeks, possibly some R1a or I2) came later and destroyed Minoan civilization. Maternally I am surprised as they seem to have been very typical European , as they are today all across Europe with mtdna H dominating in literally every part of Europe, these middle eastern men , many of them, may have bred with typical cro-magnid European women.

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    0 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Renfrew seems to be pleased by the results as well:

    The analysis of DNA from the Lassithi cave is a "valuable contribution," said Colin Renfrew, an archaeologist from the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at the University of Cambridge, who was not involved in the study. However, to make a clearer connection to the Anatolian migration, the researchers should have compared the Minoan DNA with more DNA samples from modern and ancient Anatolia, he said
    http://news.yahoo.com/mysterious-min...151455582.html

    In my humble opinion there was a south-european-like branch of the Indo-Europeans from Anatolia, which was linked to both, R1b+J2 and which affected mostly Anatolia, Greece and Italy, at least. I'm sure there existed R1b peoples whithout blonde individuals. Today Armenia would be such an example.

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    0 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    No the italian R1b came from continental Europe, northwest of the alps predominantly. The Minoan Crete J2 was mostly a "solo" J2 package coming from the middle East, R1b in Greece came after Minoan civilization which was primarily J2.

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    Most Armenian R1b is R-l23 I think, came from Russia through Caucasus to Armenia; very old Clade, its certainly not dominant, I would even say barely present in Italy.

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    I buy it that this possible neolithic R1b in Crete came from anatolia; what I don't buy is that they spoke an indo-european language. Since this R1b is so old and since Minoan is most probably non-IE, this might be another example of old R1b speaking non-IE language.

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    The only thing this study establishes is that the Minoan civ. was from a Neolithic (Anatolia spread) source and not from a North-African migration.

    Hughey et al 2013
    Our data are compatible with the hypothesis of an autochthonous development of the Minoan civilization by the descendants of the Neolithic settlers of the island.
    ---
    Given that the timing of the first Neolithic inhabitants to reach Crete 9,000 YBP coincides with the migration of Neolithic farmers out of Anatolia, it is highly probable that the same ancestral population that spread to Europe, also spread to Crete and contributed to the founding of the early Minoan civilization.
    ---
    Importantly, three of the top ten nearest neighbours to the Minoans are ancient (two Neolithic and one Bronze Age) populations (Figs 5 and 6a, Table 1 and Supplementary Table S6). In fact, the highest percentage of Minoan haplotype sharing (33.33%) is observed with Neolithic populations from Southern Europe (including samples from Neolithic sites of Treilles and Iberia) (Fig. 4d).

    "They were very similar to Neolithic Europeans and very similar to present day-Cretans," - George Stamatoyannopoulos

    The only Indo-European link (to be noted) is the Anatolian hypothesis (that Neolithic [7000 BC] Anatolia was already proto-Indo-European) of C. Renfrew.
    But that is if the Anatolian hypothesis of Renfrew is even correct! if its not than there is no Indo-European link.

    acc. to Table 1: the nearest neighbours to the Minoan civ. are the Sardinian Bronze(age) and the Iberian Bronze(age)
    http://www.nature.com/ncomms/journal...ms2871_T1.html

    Hughey et al 2013 - Figure 6: Relationships between the Minoans and other European populations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo View Post
    What I find surprising with this new link between the Indo-Europeans and Minoan Crete is that Minoan people were usually depicted as having black curly haired and half of the time as being very darked skinned - the opposite of what is expected of the fair-haired, fair-skinned Indo-European people. This is why some people have suggested that the Minoan came from North Africa, along with the bulk of Greek Y-DNA E1b1b. This study didn't find any African mtDNA, but it isn't really surprising since there is very little African mtDNA in modern Greece and even E1b1b is rather sparse in modern Crete, especially in the Lasithi Plateau (5%).

    I believe that the dark pigmentation came with the J2 people from the Fertile Crescent, although it is too early to say whether they came before or after R1a and R1b Indo-Europeans. J2 could have come in the (late) Neolithic just as it could have arrived in the late Bronze Age, following the collapse of the Minoan civilisation and the rise of the Sea Peoples. The latter is not impossible considering the strong association of J2 with seafaring civilisations (Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Venetians, Portuguese).

    However, since Neolithic samples were limited to G2a, I2a and E1b1b samples, and that regions with high frequencies of these haplogroups (e.g. Sardinia, which may be the best reference population to compare with Neolithic Europeans) have fairer skin and less curly hair than people in the Fertile Crescent, I would suppose that J2 was already part of the Minoan admixture. My original assumption was that the Minoan were mostly a hybrid of R1b and J2 male lineages. The mitochondrial lineages in this study that could correspond to the maternal side of J2 are R0, HV, K, and some subclades of H, J and T.

    Minoan language remains a mystery since Linear A has not yet be deciphered. So we have no clue as to whether it was Indo-European or not. Either alternative is equally possible. The Minoans could have inherited their language either from R1b+R1a Indo-Europeans or from J2 non-IE.
    H5-individuals have also been found in Tell Halula, Syria, dated 6800 BC - they could have been rather dark haired and dark skinned, too.

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    Most r1b on Crete in particular, is u152, most in mainland Greece is l-23

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    0 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    By far most in Italy is u152, the Middle East + mainland Greece are higher in L-23

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    Quote Originally Posted by adamo View Post
    Most r1b on Crete in particular, is u152, most in mainland Greece is l-23
    What are your sources. I don't know of any study on Crete that tested U152 or L23. Even the FTDNA project is of little help as only a handful of R1b tested for subclades.

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    0 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Maps of r1b subclades on the InternetInternet

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    This affinity of Minoan maternal lineages with the modern populations of Northern and Western Europe are interesting because the shared mt-haplogroups happen to be exactly those I have identified as Indo-European mtDNA. I have linked H5a, H7, T, U3, U5a1 and X2 with the spread of R1b in the Bronze Age, and I, U2, U4 and W with that of R1a.

    Modern Crete has a relatively high frequency of R1b (15%) and R1a (9%), and the highest local percentage of R1b ever observed in Greece justly happens to be in the Lasithi Plateau (36.6% R1b according to Martinez et al. 2007), where these 37 ancient samples are from. Apart from U3 (probably, since there is still one unidentified U) all the mt-haplogroups corresponding to R1b were found.
    I think most Aryans (Indo-Europeans) worshipped the bull. Bull worship would be an indicator of R1a and R1b. When Moses went up the mountain the Israelites built a bull or calf thus indicating Israelites have some connection with R1b people and also Egypt as King Tut was R1b.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by oriental View Post
    I think most Aryans (Indo-Europeans) worshipped the bull. Bull worship would be an indicator of R1a and R1b. When Moses went up the mountain the Israelites built a bull or calf thus indicating Israelites have some connection with R1b people and also Egypt as King Tut was R1b.
    Personally I have linked bull worship chiefly with J2 populations (although some were absorbed by R1b, like in Iberia, or by R1a, like in South Asia).

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    Well in another thread I mentioned that Haplogroup J being so old would be everywhere and also linked with Indo-Europeans. J2 is found in India, Middle East and Europe. I think Indo-Europeans would be from some tribes with J2, R1a, R1b, E and G in the general area of Central Asia, Anatolia and parts of Eastern Europe during the formation.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by adamo View Post
    Most r1b on Crete in particular, is u152, most in mainland Greece is l-23
    u152 in Crete is about 40% of R1b from what I'm seeing from online maps (assuming they're correct), so the old 60% could be the Minoan. Minoans probably had just as much R1b as mainland Balkans thou, which were a mix of neolithic european/anatolian/levantine yDna mixed with paleolithic native european mtdna. All southern-europe was probably the same in the early-bronze age.

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    "However, R-U152 occurs in 7.3% of Cretans suggesting introgression Y chromosomes of North Italian (Venetian) origin, from the 400 years of Venetian rule of the island."

    http://www.davidkfaux.org/R1b1c10_Resources.pdf

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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Bull worship was an old European, Middle Eastern, and Near Eastern phenomenon. Indo-Europeans did not worship the bull, and it doesn't hold power in it's mythology. Most Indo-European myths about bulls relates to it's destruction. It was viewed as an enemy. A good example is the Minotaur and Theseus myth.

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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Bull worship is characteristic of the ancient Levant. Cananites and later Carthagenians had their deity Moloch, often represented as a bull. There is also the ancient worshiping of Baal in Levant and Anatolia. So actually it is more common among ancient semitic speaking populations than among indo-european ones.

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    ----------------------------------------------------------------
    Last edited by Paesci; 19-05-13 at 00:14.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paesci View Post
    The bull thing in iberia, has its origins in the basque country (poor basques, always speculating about them)
    And they have the highest r1b of spain and only and 2,5% J2 one of the lowest.

    Bull playing was forbidden in all muslim territory during the reconquista, and in the rest of the north, galicia, asturias(where reconquista began ) and cantabria, this tradition its inexistent ,but remained in basque country and navarre , not only bullfighting but also bull running, or throwing the bulls at the streets and other bull festivals. its a basque thing that was spread across spain and evolved in andalucia in modern bullfighting.

    Basque traditional style of bullfighting was based in jumps over the bull, dodges and banderillas....

    See this video, is in valencia(today basque style is still in use), its remember me alot at minoian bull jumping.

    i cant link, search this in youtube "incredible spanish bull leapers"
    Modern bullfighting has its origins in medieval Castile, not in the Basque country. I think you are confusing with the bull race at the San Fermin in Pamplona.

    The earliest recorded bullfighting in ancient times was in Catalonia at the time of the Punic Wars. It is likely to have been brought by the Carthaginians (who inherited it from the Phoenicians).

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    Quote Originally Posted by kamani View Post
    Bull worship is characteristic of the ancient Levant. Cananites and later Carthagenians had their deity Moloch, often represented as a bull. There is also the ancient worshiping of Baal in Levant and Anatolia. So actually it is more common among ancient semitic speaking populations than among indo-european ones.
    As I said, it is a trait of J2 population, and J2 is strongest in the Levant and Anatolia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ebAmerican View Post
    "However, R-U152 occurs in 7.3% of Cretans suggesting introgression Y chromosomes of North Italian (Venetian) origin, from the 400 years of Venetian rule of the island."

    http://www.davidkfaux.org/R1b1c10_Resources.pdf
    R1b-U152 in Crete is only a portion of all the R1b. It could have been brought by the Venetians or the Romans. Anyway there is no reliable estimate of its percentage. It could be as low as 1% of the population.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo View Post
    R1b-U152 in Crete is only a portion of all the R1b. It could have been brought by the Venetians or the Romans. Anyway there is no reliable estimate of its percentage. It could be as low as 1% of the population.
    The U152 could be genoese ( ligurian ) as the genoese lost crete to venice in 1218 after a 5 year war.

    true also, is that the venetians migrated up to 12000 veneti to crete in the 13th and 14th century, but most left between 1620 and 1669.
    Italian archives state that the 12000 was approx 20% of the islands population in the 14th century.

    The search should be the cretans that left with the venetian commander Morosini in 1669 and where placed in the venetian owned Ionian islands.........check if the populace of these islands have this U-152
    Father's Mtdna H95a1
    Grandfather Mtdna T2b24
    Great Grandfather Mtdna T1a1e
    GMother paternal side YDna R1b-S8172
    Mother's YDna R1a-Z282

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