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Thread: Mediterranean Race–Problems of Classification

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    Mediterranean Race–Problems of Classification



    From reading historical descriptions of the "Mediterranean race", it seems like this type is very much mixed and its "pure" form (the defining features clearly predominant) is relegated to a small area. "Pure" Mediterraneans are mesocephalic to dolichocephalic, but have very narrow or elongated faces, with relatively low, sloping foreheads, straight or aquiline noses, and proportionally small jaws with a specific angle. It is accepted that one can be mesocephalic but still classified as Mediterranean. Despite this I have seen on old racial anthropology sources many individuals with medium faces and smaller, concave noses listed as "Mediterranean" because of dark hair, swarthy complexion, and mesocephalic heads. I think this would be a disqualifier and such individuals would have been listed as "Alpine-Mediterranean" but the problem is, that they seem to outnumber True Mediterraneans in S.Europe. There are people with "pure Mediterranean" features, and they have a clearly distinct look, so that we know they are a distinct source population. It seems the two "varieties" of Mediterraneans in their "pure" form can be found in North Africa, where it is interesting to note that the population has on average proportionally the longest/narrowest faces in the world. While I do believe Irano-Afghans are part of the Mediterranean family, they are a distinct subset who I believe is classified correctly as it is so I will not include them. It is also mentioned that Mediterraneans usually show some traces of light pigmentation and possible hints of blondness, but I reject this, and believe it is an example of the prevalence of "Alpine" admixture.

    I will say "Mediterranean" populations have the following:

    •Very long or narrow face (proportionally more so than the Nordic population)•Nose that is at least straight if not aquiline, usually very high root and bridge-if present, concavity is very slight, nose is also very pointy-the stub noses that we see among "Mediterranean" individuals frequently is definitely Alpine
    •Clearly defined chin
    •Dark hair and swarthy complexion
    •Face is soft, except for jaw which is skinny and sharp, often small (N. Africans)
    •Head is mesocephalic or dolichocephalic.

    I think that in Europe we will see these features wherever haplogroups I2a1a and J are common. The main obstacle seems to be E1b1b, which is clearly predominant in N. Africa, and clearly present in men without these features (i.e. Montenegrins) but in Europe it is also seen in Gheg and Kosovar Albanians who do in fact have many of these facial features but are classified as Dinaric due to brachycephaly.
    Sardenoid= Flaring nostrils, very low forehead, rounder face, higher cheekbones, bigger chin, deep nasal indent (Haplogroup G?), perhaps separate classification? Perhaps ancestral Alpines?

    Finally, I believe that the "West Asian" component in Europeans has evolved into what we know as the Mediterranean race. We can look to Irano-Afghans, Arabs/"Orientalids", Dinarics, and Armenoids for West Asians who also have dark complexion and long faces although the latter two are brachycephalic.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    First, there is no such thing as a Mediterranean "race".

    The closest thing we have to a "Mediterranean" cluster is probably Sardinians, so some combination of Anatolian Early Neolithic, plus a chunk of WHG, plus some bit of "steppe" ancestry.

    If someone wants to talk about physical anthropology they should state which terms, from which anthropologists, they are using.

    I don't pay any attention to terms (and definitions and classifications) made up by non-anthropologists on anthrofora based on who knows what subjective criteria.

    The term "Atlanto-Med" is just one example. It's meaning has been totally changed and misused.


    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    First, there is no such thing as a Mediterranean "race".

    The closest thing we have to a "Mediterranean" cluster is probably Sardinians, so some combination of Anatolian Early Neolithic, plus a chunk of WHG, plus some bit of "steppe" ancestry.

    If someone wants to talk about physical anthropology they should state which terms, from which anthropologists, they are using.

    I don't pay any attention to terms (and definitions and classifications) made up by non-anthropologists on anthrofora based on who knows what subjective criteria.

    The term "Atlanto-Med" is just one example. It's meaning has been totally changed and misused.
    The terminology I used is from Coon, and used by many other early anthropologists. "Sardinian" is distinguished from "West Asian", and sometimes even "South European", in autosomal admixture graphs. Of course the autosomal components in PCA graphs will differ, but these ones are by no means rare or controversial.

    "Atlanto-Mediterranean" was used for so many different phenotypes anyway.

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    [QUOTE=Dinarid;510910]The terminology I used is from Coon, and used by many other early anthropologists. "Sardinian" is distinguished from "West Asian", and sometimes even "South European", in autosomal admixture graphs. Of course the autosomal components in PCA graphs will differ, but these ones are by no means rare or controversial.
    Coon was an outlier at his time. Now, at the time of genetics is totally discredited theory. North Africans are not Mediterraneans. They have at least 10% of their genes from subSaharan Africa. Dinaricism had main component tallness. Yes Geg Albanaian are tall.

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    [QUOTE=DuPidh;510920]
    Quote Originally Posted by Dinarid View Post
    The terminology I used is from Coon, and used by many other early anthropologists. "Sardinian" is distinguished from "West Asian", and sometimes even "South European", in autosomal admixture graphs. Of course the autosomal components in PCA graphs will differ, but these ones are by no means rare or controversial.
    Coon was an outlier at his time. Now, at the time of genetics is totally discredited theory. North Africans are not Mediterraneans. They have at least 10% of their genes from subSaharan Africa. Dinaricism had main component tallness. Yes Geg Albanaian are tall.
    "At least 10%" is very much different from 25% or 50%. North Africans and Southern Europeans share a common ancestry even if they have been separated for thousands of years-also Southern Europeans were affected by the various population movements from the east.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dinarid View Post
    The terminology I used is from Coon, and used by many other early anthropologists. "Sardinian" is distinguished from "West Asian", and sometimes even "South European", in autosomal admixture graphs. Of course the autosomal components in PCA graphs will differ, but these ones are by no means rare or controversial.
    Coon was an outlier at his time. Now, at the time of genetics is totally discredited theory. North Africans are not Mediterraneans. They have at least 10% of their genes from subSaharan Africa. Dinaricism had main component tallness. Yes Geg Albanaian are tall.
    Paleolithic and Epipaleolithic East African skulls are in most cases completely Mediterranean.

    Coon cited these male Lake Elmentaita skulls as being identical to Corded Ware, though the former individuals seem to have been singificantly taller.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkoZ View Post
    Paleolithic and Epipaleolithic East African skulls are in most cases completely Mediterranean.

    Coon cited these male Lake Elmentaita skulls as being identical to Corded Ware, though the former individuals seem to have been singificantly taller.

    East Africa is different from the [rest of the] sub-Saharan portion of the continent.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Coon actually got it right about more things than most of them did. Regardless, we now have better methods.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    'med' is also a confusing term because it ties geography and genetic; Mediterranean is so big: pop of South Eurasia, even anciently linked one with another by same basic global autosomal, had developped neat phenotypic differences by partial isolation and some mesologic inputs - ancient anthropo bases itself the most often upon very dark pigmentation (for 'europoids'), true dolichocephaly on life (mesocephaly is an error I think, concerning means); even for stature there were not accord.
    and to complicate things, someones did not discriminate the mesopaleolithic pops involved in crossings sice late Mesolithic...

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    ATW the types evolve by time even without external crossings - not always towards an unique direction! It's dynamics -
    already Natufians were apparently a mix of close but different pops, not phonetypically identic - and they have as all broader faces than their successors; the part of internal partial homogeneisation and gracilisation and narrowing of face , and the part of crossing with different new southern pops in Levant is still to be studied (I think the more aquilin high rooted (frontal) nose prsent but not al present among Near-easterner is maybe of South Caspian origin or from the Iranian Plateau: it could show a Y-J folks introgression towards SouthWest Asia before other peregrinations could be the propagator of this nasal profile - first mediters were rather less agressively "nosed"; The old paleo-mso phyla more 'croma' or more 'brünn-capelle' seems having played a differenciating role among the southern gracilised 'europoids' as well as in North, and this before crossings with almost unchanged (except stature and within crossings) Paleo-meso pops of more Northern or Northeastern regions of Eurasia -

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Somehow I feel strange about this thread.
    Two mediterraneans will take nearly 30sec without any speaking to understand the other is also mediterranean. and honestly, it means that it has always been open to everyone, but that natural selection is at levels that are scary. so i think that mediterranean is not a sub race, just the best of all of them due to scary natural selection. I apologise for this comment but I am pretty tired of the anemic models.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bergin View Post
    Somehow I feel strange about this thread.
    Two mediterraneans will take nearly 30sec without any speaking to understand the other is also mediterranean. and honestly, it means that it has always been open to everyone, but that natural selection is at levels that are scary. so i think that mediterranean is not a sub race, just the best of all of them due to scary natural selection. I apologise for this comment but I am pretty tired of the anemic models.
    According to the flag you are Albanian. So, you would according to 20th century racial categories be classified as Dinaric (if you are Gheg) or Alpine (if you are Tosk). I understand that geographically you are indeed from a nation on the shores of the Mediterranean, but the reference at hand to "Mediterraneans" is that racial category from the system deemed obsolete by modern science and indeed most here. I am curious as to your claim that two Mediterraneans can recognize each other immediately. In what way will they recognize each other? As fellow Southern Europeans/North Africans/West Asians? Or members of the Mediterranean subrace as known to 20th century anthropologists?

    I would say two Dinaric individuals could recognize each other as Dinaric immediately upon seeing each other, but what would this mean?

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    To be honest, I dont know if I can tell dinaric from alpine.
    Gegs are probably taller than tosks and probably tend to dinaric.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dinarid View Post
    East Africa is different from the [rest of the] sub-Saharan portion of the continent.
    Yes, parts of East Africa are also arid rather than tropical. My guess is that 'Mediterranean' and 'Caucasoid' morphologies are an adaption to arid-temperate zones and not a feature of race.

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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Mediterraneans are people who
    live around the Mediterranean. Are they all genetically similar? Of course not...Lebanese and Spaniards are vastly different...but they share the same "pond".

    If the ancient Chinese decided to inhabit some mediterranean island instead of moving east, they too would be mediterraneans ...

    The classification means nothing tbh.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    the classifications try to constate current ressemblances and differences: "race" even in animals is (or was) always the result of selection of everysort: it can have a value for some Kilo-years, not for ever, as everyone knows, nature evolves, the most often slowly, for some rare traits, quickly - that said, Human people live not more like animals and the selection is seemingly lighter for them than for animals - and if Mediterranea has a somehow unified enough climate, a man travelling from the westernmost shores to the easternmost shore will immediatly see differences not only at the individual level (common among HUmans) but also at the collective (average) level, sometimes between neighbouring pops, geograpgically close but which had different stories -
    some types seem common allover Mediteranean regions, from North Africa, Spain to Arabia; more numerous others are distributed very differently according to regions - History, not recent adaptation: adaptation is rather slow... we are no more speaking of Paleo isolated families submitted to climatic and other mesologic selection (and yet, our Paleo ancestors had already good skills to oppose to Nature). Just thoughts.

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    my 9# and 10# were about supposed 'mediter' types by physical anthropology - my 16# is about the Mediterranean pop (inhabitants:geographic, not anthropologic) as a whole, not the types; this precision to not seem contradicting myself: two different concepts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MOESAN View Post
    the classifications try to constate current ressemblances and differences: "race" even in animals is (or was) always the result of selection of everysort: it can have a value for some Kilo-years, not for ever, as everyone knows, nature evolves, the most often slowly, for some rare traits, quickly - that said, Human people live not more like animals and the selection is seemingly lighter for them than for animals - and if Mediterranea has a somehow unified enough climate, a man travelling from the westernmost shores to the easternmost shore will immediatly see differences not only at the individual level (common among HUmans) but also at the collective (average) level, sometimes between neighbouring pops, geograpgically close but which had different stories -
    some types seem common allover Mediteranean regions, from North Africa, Spain to Arabia; more numerous others are distributed very differently according to regions - History, not recent adaptation: adaptation is rather slow... we are no more speaking of Paleo isolated families submitted to climatic and other mesologic selection (and yet, our Paleo ancestors had already good skills to oppose to Nature). Just thoughts.
    I agree with some of the major points you have made, and thus reject any notion that the most predominant commonalities between inhabitants of the Mediterranean are due to natural selection or evolution, which I find ridiculous.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dinarid View Post
    I agree with some of the major points you have made, and thus reject any notion that the most predominant commonalities between inhabitants of the Mediterranean are due to natural selection or evolution, which I find ridiculous.
    Mathieson et al, Nature 2015 (see figure 3).
    or open access:
    http://biorxiv.org/content/biorxiv/e...16477.full.pdf




    75 The derived allele of rs12913832 at the HERC2/OCA2 locus is the primary determinant of blue eyes in Europeans, and may also contribute to light skin and hair pigmentation25-28. Our analysis detects a genome-wide signal of selection at this locus, but instead of the signal being one of positive selection with a coefficient of 0.036 as in a previous study of ancient DNA in the eastern Europe steppe8, our signal is of
    weakly negative selection (������ =-0.007, CI = -0.011 to -0.001). One possible explanation is local adaptation: that the allele is advantageous in the north and disadvantageous in the south of Europe. This hypothesis is
    supported by the fact that our data shows that an extreme north-south gradient in allele frequencies has been maintained in Europe for the last 8,000 years (Figure 2C, Extended data Figure 3).

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    So there are indications that within the European genes, geography poses a selection criteria. The South of Europe, generally, favors dark eyes. I say generally because there are variations also within it.


    I found this map for other reasons but might interest you because of a specific 'Dinaric feature'



    For me it makes sense that albania splits into north and south, geg and tosk because it is at a transition climatic zone. The North is less affected by sun (it never dries out even in the hottest summers), while the south does a bit away from the mountain regions. It is easier to fined more blue eyed in the north than in the south (especially the flat lands).Can you by any chance pick-point Basque and Armenian-like?

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    For people interested in the genetics of phenotypes, they might be interested in this:

    http://theconversation.com/how-we-fo...about-us-59837

    "A genome-wide association scan implicates DCHS2, RUNX2, GLI3, PAX1 and EDAR in human facial variation"
    https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms11616


    Also, a prior thread discussed this:
    http://www.eupedia.com/forum/threads...highlight=nose

    There have been a number of recent papers referencing the fact that there seems to be selection for increased height in northern Europeans and decreased height in some southern Europeans, i.e. in Spain. This is an example.
    http://mathii.github.io/review/2015/...ight-in-europe

    http://biorxiv.org/content/early/2015/03/13/016477

    There was also a paper indicating that there was selection for dark eyes in southern Europe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bergin View Post
    So there are indications that within the European genes, geography poses a selection criteria. The South of Europe, generally, favors dark eyes. I say generally because there are variations also within it.


    I found this map for other reasons but might interest you because of a specific 'Dinaric feature'



    For me it makes sense that albania splits into north and south, geg and tosk because it is at a transition climatic zone. The North is less affected by sun (it never dries out even in the hottest summers), while the south does a bit away from the mountain regions. It is easier to fined more blue eyed in the north than in the south (especially the flat lands).Can you by any chance pick-point Basque and Armenian-like?
    What are the darker spots? Is it a height map or something? I don't understand it
    They all seem to be on the west coasts

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Balkanite View Post
    What are the darker spots? Is it a height map or something? I don't understand it
    They all seem to be on the west coasts
    Average rain fall (1945-1995) in mm. (you take a 1x1 meter square bucket and check how much water it collected during the year).
    Most is on the boundaries between mountains and oceans/seas.

    Lol, I dont think it has connections with the western civilization, but your comment made me doubt for one second.

  24. #24
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    Y-DNA haplogroup
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bergin View Post
    Mathieson et al, Nature 2015 (see figure 3).
    or open access:
    http://biorxiv.org/content/biorxiv/e...16477.full.pdf




    75 The derived allele of rs12913832 at the HERC2/OCA2 locus is the primary determinant of blue eyes in Europeans, and may also contribute to light skin and hair pigmentation25-28. Our analysis detects a genome-wide signal of selection at this locus, but instead of the signal being one of positive selection with a coefficient of 0.036 as in a previous study of ancient DNA in the eastern Europe steppe8, our signal is of
    weakly negative selection (������ =-0.007, CI = -0.011 to -0.001). One possible explanation is local adaptation: that the allele is advantageous in the north and disadvantageous in the south of Europe. This hypothesis is
    supported by the fact that our data shows that an extreme north-south gradient in allele frequencies has been maintained in Europe for the last 8,000 years (Figure 2C, Extended data Figure 3).
    I agree for the theory but the phenotypes SNPs are studied on very tiny samples todate - the selection is or has been surely at work as a whole (why not?) but if you study more accutely today pops in close places (someones since 2000 years or more and this spite some local intercrossings) you see differences in pigmentation or stature which contradict a strong and too recent selection; I don't know how will work selection upon coming generations with our medecine, drugs, indoor life and so on? Surely even slower, without speaking of the recent intercontinental crossings increasing in number which complicate the analysis

  25. #25
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    If you live in the south of Europe, the adaptation to the environment consists of: if you have clear eyes the amount of sun we receive makes you always scandal, if you have an excessively clear skin you can have problems with skin cancer, so the adaptation to the Half happens to have dark eyes and brown skin, now I have neighbors with very clear skin and blue eyes that all their ancestors are from the area, south on the banks of the meditarreaneo. Therefore I believe that if a group of Iberian Meditrienne was grouped and moved to Scandinavia within 1000 years all would be blond with blue eyes and skin would clrara.

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