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Thread: proper Indus Valley Civilization DNA to come

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    4 out of 4 members found this post helpful.

    proper Indus Valley Civilization DNA to come

    http://www.caravanmagazine.in/vantag...pes-rakhigarhi

    The Rakhigarhi samples belonged to individuals who lived approximately 4,600 years ago, during the peak of the Indus Valley Civilisation. The absence of steppe DNA markers in the samples indicates that, at that point in time, there had been no intermingling between the steppe pastoralists and the population of the Indus Valley Civilisation.

    Rai had earlier told Open magazine that the male “Y chromosome R1a genetic marker is missing in the Rakhigarhi sample.” The R1a is seen as a marker of Indo-European speakers, but its absence in a single sample is not significant—it is the wider analysis of the entire genome that is important in the context of this sample.

    The work by Rai and his team will provide direct evidence for the model proposed by the March 2018 paper from the Reich Lab, which has bearing on a number of questions of great interest pertaining to the Indian past. The preprint states, “Our results also shed light on the question of the origins of the subset of Indo-European languages spoken in India and Europe. It is striking that the great majority of Indo-European speakers today living in both Europe and South Asia harbor large fractions of ancestry related to … Steppe pastoralists … suggesting that ‘Late Proto-Indo-European’—the language ancestral to all modern Indo- European languages—was the language” of the steppe pastoralist population.

    In other words, the preprint observes that the migration from the steppes to South Asia was the source of the Indo-European languages in the subcontinent. Commenting on this, Rai said, “any model of migration of Indo-Europeans from South Asia simply cannot fit the data that is now available.”

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    Quote Originally Posted by bicicleur View Post
    http://www.caravanmagazine.in/vantag...pes-rakhigarhi

    The Rakhigarhi samples belonged to individuals who lived approximately 4,600 years ago, during the peak of the Indus Valley Civilisation. The absence of steppe DNA markers in the samples indicates that, at that point in time, there had been no intermingling between the steppe pastoralists and the population of the Indus Valley Civilisation.

    Rai had earlier told Open magazine that the male “Y chromosome R1a genetic marker is missing in the Rakhigarhi sample.” The R1a is seen as a marker of Indo-European speakers, but its absence in a single sample is not significant—it is the wider analysis of the entire genome that is important in the context of this sample.

    The work by Rai and his team will provide direct evidence for the model proposed by the March 2018 paper from the Reich Lab, which has bearing on a number of questions of great interest pertaining to the Indian past. The preprint states, “Our results also shed light on the question of the origins of the subset of Indo-European languages spoken in India and Europe. It is striking that the great majority of Indo-European speakers today living in both Europe and South Asia harbor large fractions of ancestry related to … Steppe pastoralists … suggesting that ‘Late Proto-Indo-European’—the language ancestral to all modern Indo- European languages—was the language” of the steppe pastoralist population.

    In other words, the preprint observes that the migration from the steppes to South Asia was the source of the Indo-European languages in the subcontinent. Commenting on this, Rai said, “any model of migration of Indo-Europeans from South Asia simply cannot fit the data that is now available.”
    Out of India was always an absurd theory, and it's good to know that Indian scientists have bitten the bullet and acknowledged it, no matter the blowback they might get from extreme Hindu nationalists.

    The story still isn't completely clear, however.


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    However, there are the other samples in the other area of IVC. There is a great possibilty of R1a to appear in IVC, which might make situation more complicated. As I mentioned lots of times, EHG R1a has mtDNA C and lake baikal pottery, being buried in supine position like lake baikal people. J was also found in karelia. In iran Hotu, J and lake baikal pottery were found. West siberian HG entered IVC.
    (I think lake baikal people would enter IVC)
    One indian member in Eurogens already caught the point of the possibilty, considering the relation between EHG and West siberian HG.

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    Razib Khan's take on it:
    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2018/...medium=twitter

    He's cautious since it's only one sample and from the far eastern range of the area, but basically suspects this will be the case for all the samples.

    "A major caveat here is that we’re talking about one sample from the eastern edge of the Indus Valley Civilization (IVC). I’m not sure that this should adjust our probabilities that much. From all the other things we know, as well as copious ancient DNA from Central Asia, our probability for the model which the Rakhigarhi result aligns with should already be quite high.Again, since it’s one sample, we need to be cautious…but I bet once we have more samples from the IVC the Rakhigarhi individual will probably be enriched for AASI relative to other samples from the IVC. The InPe samples in The Genomic Formation of South and Central Asia exhibited some variation, and it’s likely that the IVC region was genetically heterogeneous."

    I'm sorry, but if I'm to be honest, if the following is true, it doesn't say much good about the steppe people.

    "In contrast, India has a rich mythos which seems to date to the early period of the arrival of the Indo-Aryans. One interpretation has been that since these myths seem to take as a given that Indo-Aryans were autochtonous to India, they were. But the genetic data seem to be strongly suggesting that the arrival of pastoralists occurred in South Asia concomitant with their arrival in West Asia, and somewhat after their expansion westward into Europe. Indian tradition and mythos could actually be a window into the general process of how these pastoralists dealt with native peoples and an illustration of the sort of cultural synthesis that often occurred."

    I'm not fond of the fact that they mated barely pubescent girls, either, to the detriment of both the girls and their longevity rates.

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    The "Indian ultra-nationalist" community already warned us - in Eurogenes and other places - that Dr. Rai was "misunderstood" and "misquoted", and that "of course" the results will prove that the IVC people were relatively close to the modern North Indian Brahmins and already had typical Indo-Aryan autosomal and Y-DNA markers. Oh my God, what kind of brainwashing did these people take? I can only feel a bit of pity on them because, as a more sensible and well informed Indian man told me yesterday, they're somehow striving to decolonize the culture and mindset of India, and to get rid of the centuries-old (even before the British) feelings of inferiority due to foreign conquest, but they want to do that regardless of facts and evidences and in such an extreme, uncompromising way that their brand of nationalism is becoming an international laughing stock these days...

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    I think there is something to be said about the fact that it was the indians that preserved these ancient traditions.

    The Vedas, Sanskrit, rituals, and all the rest of the culture, both material and immaterial.

    Its not only wrong but sick, to have this infantile attitude towards Indian's amazing achievement by somehow claiming ownership to it via higher steppe percentages
    in Brahmins.

    Indians paid a price and sacrificed to conserve all that they did, they get a claim to this legacy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bicicleur View Post
    It is striking that the great majority of Indo-European speakers today living in both Europe and South Asia harbor large fractions of ancestry related to … Steppe pastoralists … suggesting that ‘Late Proto-Indo-European’—the language ancestral to all modern Indo- European languages—was the language” of the steppe pastoralist population.
    Their phrasing of these results suggest to me that they are leaning towards reviving the Indo-Hittite theory, that is, an Early PIE i.e. Indo-Hittite that was spoken not necessarily in the same place and the same culture as the later PIE-minus-Anatolian Late PIE of the Pontic-Caspian steppe.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post
    I think there is something to be said about the fact that it was the indians that preserved these ancient traditions.

    The Vedas, Sanskrit, rituals, and all the rest of the culture, both material and immaterial.

    Its not only wrong but sick, to have this infantile attitude towards Indian's amazing achievement by somehow claiming ownership to it via higher steppe percentages
    in Brahmins.

    Indians paid a price and sacrificed to conserve all that they did, they get a claim to this legacy.
    But nobody is even suggesting that Indian culture came fully formed, locked and packaged in the steppes, and then delivered to India. Indian culture is most definitely NOT a steppe culture, but the indigenous final development of a mix of cultures, including the one brought by steppe Central Asian pastoralists. That's also what Greek culture is, what Italian culture is, and so on.

    I actually think that this misunderstanding between genetics and culture (which change, shift and evolve much faster and more flexibly than the genetic makeup of a population) is one of the main reasons for all this resistance against the latest findings by Indian nationalists. Nobody is claiming that Indian culture or Hinduism itself is not Indian, but just that the Indo-Aryan language and the Indo-Aryan steppe culture were contributors to the melting pot from which Indian civilization arose.

    Now I myself can't really understand what's so offensive and demeaning about suggesting that there was no primeval continuity in India and that their culture has a substantial foreign contribution. Perhaps I don't even want to understand the true, undisguised reasons.

    This is not about "ownership". Thousands of years later you just can't disentangle the steppe from the Iranian Noelithic and from the indigenous Indian hunter-gatherer contributions either in genetics or in culture, they're all irretrievably mixed together and forming a whole new thing. It'd be naive to believe that Indian culture really preserves Aryan culture exactly as it was when pastoralists migrated there milennia ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by johen View Post
    However, there are the other samples in the other area of IVC. There is a great possibilty of R1a to appear in IVC, which might make situation more complicated. As I mentioned lots of times, EHG R1a has mtDNA C and lake baikal pottery, being buried in supine position like lake baikal people. J was also found in karelia. In iran Hotu, J and lake baikal pottery were found. West siberian HG entered IVC.
    (I think lake baikal people would enter IVC)
    One indian member in Eurogens already caught the point of the possibilty, considering the relation between EHG and West siberian HG.
    R1a may appear there, but not "the" R1a clades associated with Indo-Aryan or more broadly Indo-Iranian speakers/culture, and even if EHG and West Siberian HG were related to each other they were still different enough to allow a distinction between them, so if some now rarer clade of R1a appears it shouldn't be too difficult to distinguish whether it came with EHG/CHG steppe pastoralists or with West Siberian HGs. Haplogroups alone, especially in a very generic label (R1b, R1a, no specified clades), are a very weak indication of the origin of migrations and components of a people's genetic structure if you don't relate them to the results of autosomal DNA analysis. If no BA Steppe-like ancestry is found in IVC, but eventually West Siberian HG is found, then the presence of R1a would be much more easily explained by the latter than by the unlikely assumption that IVC were already Indo-Aryans, had "Aryan" R1a, but somehow got rid of all their steppe ancestry.

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    2 out of 3 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    Razib Khan's take on it:
    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2018/...medium=twitter

    He's cautious since it's only one sample and from the far eastern range of the area, but basically suspects this will be the case for all the samples.

    "A major caveat here is that we’re talking about one sample from the eastern edge of the Indus Valley Civilization (IVC). I’m not sure that this should adjust our probabilities that much. From all the other things we know, as well as copious ancient DNA from Central Asia, our probability for the model which the Rakhigarhi result aligns with should already be quite high.Again, since it’s one sample, we need to be cautious…but I bet once we have more samples from the IVC the Rakhigarhi individual will probably be enriched for AASI relative to other samples from the IVC. The InPe samples in The Genomic Formation of South and Central Asia exhibited some variation, and it’s likely that the IVC region was genetically heterogeneous."

    I'm sorry, but if I'm to be honest, if the following is true, it doesn't say much good about the steppe people.

    "In contrast, India has a rich mythos which seems to date to the early period of the arrival of the Indo-Aryans. One interpretation has been that since these myths seem to take as a given that Indo-Aryans were autochtonous to India, they were. But the genetic data seem to be strongly suggesting that the arrival of pastoralists occurred in South Asia concomitant with their arrival in West Asia, and somewhat after their expansion westward into Europe. Indian tradition and mythos could actually be a window into the general process of how these pastoralists dealt with native peoples and an illustration of the sort of cultural synthesis that often occurred."

    .
    Well Razib is right about one thing, Rakhigarhi is one of hundreds upon hundreds of IVC settlements and on the very eastern frontier of the IVC cultures. In the west Mohenjo Daro and Harrapa along with the many other settlements along the Indus may have harbored more Iran_Neo ancestry, I remember a description of anthropological features from skeletons in Mohenjo Daro being described as mostly Mediterranean. That be saying said I do not expect Rakhigarhi to be the most AASI shifted of the IVC, that will probably be claimed by the settlements south east in Gujarat like Lothal and Dolivira where contact with hunter gatherers was most evident and native material traditions strongest and most pervasive. Keep in mind Rakhigarhi was not a shanty town either, but geographically the largest of all the IVC cities. What that means is you should not expect this sample to be some kind of outlier with more AASI ancestry than usual in IVC, but representative of someone closer toward AASI on a cline of AASI and Iran_Neo ancestry that existed in IVC from north west to south east.

    I'm not fond of the fact that they mated barely pubescent girls, either, to the detriment of both the girls and their longevity rates
    Angela, I feel as if you are overly prejudiced towards the ancient steppe people because of your own negative interactions with some steppe theorists.

    Are you even aware your own ancestors did the same thing? The legal marriage age in Rome was 11 and girls were expected to copulate right away lest their "inner desires" get hold of them and they lost their virginity before marriage, eliminating the little value they had in the Roman world. At least the steppe people did it out of desperation and not a bizarre anxiety about pseudoscience involving an imbalance of fluids and gases in young women.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorcs View Post
    But nobody is even suggesting that Indian culture came fully formed
    Did I suggest this? Why mention this?

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post
    I think there is something to be said about the fact that it was the indians that preserved these ancient traditions.

    The Vedas, Sanskrit, rituals, and all the rest of the culture, both material and immaterial.

    Its not only wrong but sick, to have this infantile attitude towards Indian's amazing achievement by somehow claiming ownership to it via higher steppe percentages
    in Brahmins.

    Indians paid a price and sacrificed to conserve all that they did, they get a claim to this legacy.
    I agree, if you want a laugh look at the comments of EastPole on eurogenes who claims that the philosophy of India and Greece (he mentions specifically Pythagoras) actually derive from ancient knowledge from "Hypoborean philosophers" (who I guess he connects with balto-slavs)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post
    Did I suggest this? Why mention this?
    Oh don't take it personally. I'm not talking of your personal opinions, but making a comment, based on parts of what you've written, on some of the misunderstandings and controversies that have surrounded this issue, most of them related to this underlying - and sometimes quite explicit - notion that "they're trying to deny the indigenous origin of Indian languages and cultures and are again stealing our legacy and our self-esteem as they did during the colonial era", often in an unfair way, because no one among the criticized parts was claiming that Indians do not "own" their culture and history.

    There are also of course the radical types that believe everything the ultra-nationalist Indian pseudo-scientists say and are automatically suspicious of anything wrtten by the "white man" (even when, as in the study of David Reich et al., there are also several South Asians involved). Just a few minutes ago I had to read an angry Indian man's post against my answer to a topic, with all the "scientific evidences" that the IVC had very advanced technology, like the ability to make floating rocks (yeah...), and that - prepare for this - they destroyed themselves in a nuclear war because they weren't responsible with the use of their nuclear weapons.

    So, THAT is the kind of people with a "keen scientific interest" that are into delirious wishful thinking of a "glorious hidden past" and believe they are in an epic crusade against the "white men" who want to deny that their civilizations is not only 100% indigenous, but 100% primeval, dating back to even (yes, I read this exact comment yesterday in another forum) 70,000 years ago - oh, and mind you, those ancient people already spoke an early form of Sanskrit. It's just too much for me to take them seriously.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    I'm sorry, but if I'm to be honest, if the following is true, it doesn't say much good about the steppe people.

    "In contrast, India has a rich mythos which seems to date to the early period of the arrival of the Indo-Aryans. One interpretation has been that since these myths seem to take as a given that Indo-Aryans were autochtonous to India, they were. But the genetic data seem to be strongly suggesting that the arrival of pastoralists occurred in South Asia concomitant with their arrival in West Asia, and somewhat after their expansion westward into Europe. Indian tradition and mythos could actually be a window into the general process of how these pastoralists dealt with native peoples and an illustration of the sort of cultural synthesis that often occurred."

    I'm not fond of the fact that they mated barely pubescent girls, either, to the detriment of both the girls and their longevity rates.
    I'm not sure what exactly in that quoted comment makes you say "it doesn't say much good about the steppe people".
    I see nothing that wasn't already totally expected and unsurprising in any ancient expanding population there.

    Also, as for getting barely pubescent girls married, I think the unfortunate and inconvenient truth is that they, the steppe tribes, were more following the usual norm than being the weird outliers with awful customs. Life expectancy for women, due to high maternal death rates, used to be lower than that of men, and of course at least 1/3 of them died during childhood, and women being net economic burdens after some age was also taken in consideration by the parents, so the general pattern in most ancient societies, especially those still fairly tribal, and not urban civilizations, was indeed to marry them off as soon as possible.

    I don't see anything really "OMG these bastards", by Antiquity standards, in the steppe peoples as far as these social customs are concerned. It's not like Aztecs ordering the conquered peoples to send "gifts" to them in the form of human beings to be sacrificed in the hundreds per year to appease the gods and avoid the chaos and destruction of the cosmos. In isolated tribes of these days these practices are also still pretty common.

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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Promenade View Post
    Well Razib is right about one thing, Rakhigarhi is one of hundreds upon hundreds of IVC settlements and on the very eastern frontier of the IVC cultures. In the west Mohenjo Daro and Harrapa along with the many other settlements along the Indus may have harbored more Iran_Neo ancestry, I remember a description of anthropological features from skeletons in Mohenjo Daro being described as mostly Mediterranean. That be saying said I do not expect Rakhigarhi to be the most AASI shifted of the IVC, that will probably be claimed by the settlements south east in Gujarat like Lothal and Dolivira where contact with hunter gatherers was most evident and native material traditions strongest and most pervasive. Keep in mind Rakhigarhi was not a shanty town either, but geographically the largest of all the IVC cities. What that means is you should not expect this sample to be some kind of outlier with more AASI ancestry than usual in IVC, but representative of someone closer toward AASI on a cline of AASI and Iran_Neo ancestry that existed in IVC from north west to south east.



    Angela, I feel as if you are overly prejudiced towards the ancient steppe people because of your own negative interactions with some steppe theorists.

    Are you even aware your own ancestors did the same thing? The legal marriage age in Rome was 11 and girls were expected to copulate right away lest their "inner desires" get hold of them and they lost their virginity before marriage, eliminating the little value they had in the Roman world. At least the steppe people did it out of desperation and not a bizarre anxiety about pseudoscience involving an imbalance of fluids and gases in young women.
    My dear Promenade, I've been rather "down" on the steppe people since I read about them at university a couple of decades ago, and particularly since I read Marija Gimbutas. I'm not so childish, as you seem to think, as to dislike a culture because one of its champions is a racist thug. (I know, I know, she was wrong or at least exaggerated a lot of things.)

    Part of my perspective on ancient cultures comes out of my ethical sensibilities, my compassion for the "under-dog", my belief that all human being should be treated with respect, if you will. Part of it is very much because I'm a woman, and so I'm not going to be inclined to identify with warriors banging around killing all the local men, and male children, and raping all the women. Why on earth would I?

    The more peaceable a culture, and the more respect and scope it gives to women the more I'm going to like it.

    Nor am I so childish and proprietary as to "like" a culture simply because I'm descended from the people who created it. I like the Etruscans more the Romans as a people. I also like the Cretans more than the Romans. Now, before you say it, I'm very well aware that all cultures, including those, have attributes which are less than admirable. There's nothing admirable about enslaving or killing one third of the population of Gaul, or in creating combats to the death at funeral games. It's a question of whether, in addition to the attributes which seem to be shared by most ancient cultures, there are also numerous things to balance the scale. In the case of Rome, I believe there are. (Also, that particular custom, and others of which I'm also not overly fond, are, in fact, a legacy of the Indo-Europeans. Did you forget the Romans are descended from them?) I don't see anything much noteworthy about the Indo-Europeans other than being a martial society, and apparently, ruthlessly suppressing local people, and creating a rigid caste system ultimately based on color. Certainly, most of the hall marks of what civilization they had were borrowed from others. I completely understand why Indians would not want to be descended from them; I don't either. However, we have to be rational and objective about science and history, and facts are facts and have to be accepted.

    For good or ill I was trained to be a Christian humanist. The Christian part may have faded away, but the humanist part remains, and it's going to be part of my world view. I'm also a woman, and that's also going to color my outlook. Maybe it's good for all the men in this hobby to be reminded from time to time that not everyone looks at these people and this period of time in the way that they do.

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    Hard to believe that any kind of steppe people would have high level of sophistication about anything except fighting. Indo-Aryans who went to India and parts of Near East were probably the earliest example of steppe conquerors who reached their apogee with Genghis Khan. Here's what happened when Gutians conquered parts of Near East according to Wikipedia:

    ''The Guti proved to be poor rulers. Under their crude rule, prosperity declined. They were too unaccustomed to the complexities of civilization to organize matters properly, particularly in connection with the canal network. This was allowed to sink into disrepair, with famine and death resulting. Thus, a short "dark age" swept over Mesopotamia...''

    ''
    Sumerian sources generally portray the Guti as an "unhappy", barbarous and rapacious people...''

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    I don't see anything much noteworthy about the Indo-Europeans other than being a martial society, and apparently, ruthlessly suppressing local people, and creating a rigid caste system ultimately based on color.
    Are we really sure that that was a common thing among all the Indo-European speakers who conquered other peoples and lands, especially outside South Asia? I remember having read that there are signs of still extensive inter-ethnic/inter-caste mixing in India up to a mere 2,000 years ago, when the genetic structure seems to have started to become "fossilized" and the groups became much more endogamous and to drift from each other much faster. Some saw that as an indication that the caste system only became really rigid many centuries after the supposed Indo-Aryan migration and assimilation and was an internal development of Indian culture/politics. Are there strong evidences that it was actually a much more ancient and Indo-European-wide phenomenon?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cpluskx View Post
    Hard to believe that any kind of steppe people would have high level of sophistication about anything except fighting. Indo-Aryans who went to India and parts of Middle East were probably the earliest example of steppe conquerors who reached their apogee with Genghis Khan. Here's what happened when Gutians conquered parts of Near East according to Wikipedia:

    ''The Guti proved to be poor rulers. Under their crude rule, prosperity declined. They were too unaccustomed to the complexities of civilization to organize matters properly, particularly in connection with the canal network. This was allowed to sink into disrepair, with famine and death resulting. Thus, a short "dark age" swept over Mesopotamia...''

    ''
    Sumerian sources generally portray the Guti as an "unhappy", barbarous and rapacious people...''
    That's mostly right, but they, or at least the later IE steppe cultures like Sintashta and Andronovo, become very good at making metal tools and objects, as well as efficient means of transportation (trained horses, wheels, wagons, chariots). They also must've been quite efficient in immaterial techniques like military organization and management, if not they couldn't have sustained their power and enforce their cultural ways for a long time anywhere, they would've been nothing but temporary raiders. They couldn't win those more advanced peoples if they just had strength and will, and nothing else.

    I would be wary of the way settled civilizations that were attacked by the steppe peoples portrayed them in a very dehumanizing and demeaning way. No attacked people who hates those foreigner hordes would say very good things about them. You just need to read how Romans and later Europeans portrayed the Huns and later the Mongols and Turks. Granted, they weren't "that" sophisticated, but the way they were portrayed would make us believe they were completely ignorant and primitive savages, and modern historians know that wasn't exactly the case - not when they reached Europe, anyway.

    As for the Gutians, nobody really knows if they were IE. Their few extant names don't look particularly IE to most linguists. I think people are just trying to find a direct link between the IE expansion and the Gutian invasions broadly in the same historic period. But I would be really surprised if the IE speakers were the only steppe/desert peoples to have invaded civilizations and settled societies in the Early-Mid Bronze Age. We know for sure that at least another people, Semites, expanded right in the same period and in a similar fashion, too.

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    My dear Promenade, I've been rather "down" on the steppe people since I read about them at university a couple of decades ago, and particularly since I read Marija Gimbutas. I'm not so childish, as you seem to think, as to dislike a culture because one of its champions is a racist thug. (I know, I know, she was wrong or at least exaggerated a lot of things.)

    Part of my perspective on ancient cultures comes out of my ethical sensibilities, my compassion for the "under-dog", my belief that all human being should be treated with respect, if you will. Part of it is very much because I'm a woman, and so I'm not going to be inclined to identify with warriors banging around killing all the local men, and male children, and raping all the women. Why on earth would I?

    The more peaceable a culture, and the more respect and scope it gives to women the more I'm going to like it.

    Nor am I so childish and proprietary as to "like" a culture simply because I'm descended from the people who created it. I like the Etruscans more the Romans as a people. I also like the Cretans more than the Romans. Now, before you say it, I'm very well aware that all cultures, including those, have attributes which are less than admirable. There's nothing admirable about enslaving or killing one third of the population of Gaul, or in creating combats to the death at funeral games. It's a question of whether, in addition to the attributes which seem to be shared by most ancient cultures, there are also numerous things to balance the scale. In the case of Rome, I believe there are. (Also, that particular custom, and others of which I'm also not overly fond, are, in fact, a legacy of the Indo-Europeans. Did you forget the Romans are descended from them?) I don't see anything much noteworthy about the Indo-Europeans other than being a martial society, and apparently, ruthlessly suppressing local people, and creating a rigid caste system ultimately based on color. Certainly, most of the hall marks of what civilization they had were borrowed from others. I completely understand why Indians would not want to be descended from them; I don't either. However, we have to be rational and objective about science and history, and facts are facts and have to be accepted.

    For good or ill I was trained to be a Christian humanist. The Christian part may have faded away, but the humanist part remains, and it's going to be part of my world view. I'm also a woman, and that's also going to color my outlook. Maybe it's good for all the men in this hobby to be reminded from time to time that not everyone looks at these people and this period of time in the way that they do.
    Don't worry I'm not going to go down the path of turning a thread on the celebration of finally getting dna from ancient South Asia (even if it's just one sample, it's a start) into a discussion of whether we should be reprimanding ancient cultures. I don't find you childish that's why the commentary seemed odd, it's a bit silly to be chastising steppe cultures as if they are an outlier of an exceptionally evil ancient people. The Proto Natives of the Americas were forced to practice similar mating behaviors because of their harsh environment which led to the designation of "wild types" where the men were hyper masculine and women overly feminized in physicality, are we going to attach this behavior as far back as the ANE now and blame them? (This is rhetorical, of course not)

    More pertinent to the discussion was my prior paragraph that we should not expect Rakhigarhi to be labeled as IVC_Outlier when we get more samples (one day...), but rather something more akin to IVC_East.



    Quote Originally Posted by Cpluskx View Post
    Hard to believe that any kind of steppe people would have high level of sophistication about anything except fighting. Indo-Aryans who went to India and parts of Near East were probably the earliest example of steppe conquerors who reached their apogee with Genghis Khan. Here's what happened when Gutians conquered parts of Near East according to Wikipedia:

    ''The Guti proved to be poor rulers. Under their crude rule, prosperity declined. They were too unaccustomed to the complexities of civilization to organize matters properly, particularly in connection with the canal network. This was allowed to sink into disrepair, with famine and death resulting. Thus, a short "dark age" swept over Mesopotamia...''

    ''
    Sumerian sources generally portray the Guti as an "unhappy", barbarous and rapacious people...''
    Keep in mind they were already in contact with BMAC and the ancient cities of the Turan for a while by the time they entered South Asia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorcs View Post
    Are we really sure that that was a common thing among all the Indo-European speakers who conquered other peoples and lands, especially outside South Asia? I remember having read that there are signs of still extensive inter-ethnic/inter-caste mixing in India up to a mere 2,000 years ago, when the genetic structure seems to have started to become "fossilized" and the groups became much more endogamous and to drift from each other much faster. Some saw that as an indication that the caste system only became really rigid many centuries after the supposed Indo-Aryan migration and assimilation and was an internal development of Indian culture/politics. Are there strong evidences that it was actually a much more ancient and Indo-European-wide phenomenon?
    Ancient studies linked with proto and late indo-europeans shows how much inclusive they were. They probably didn't care who the peasant were, if they were genetically related or not. And most of exterior women could have been take as concubine, only focusing on the rulling elite, like actually most of the society even today. Just like vikings becoming count in western europe, they didn't care about lost their culture and their friend if they could have power and honor, this is pretty much how those guys had to be.

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    Lol the Gutians are back! That's Alan's other account.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Promenade View Post
    Keep in mind they were already in contact with BMAC and the ancient cities of the Turan for a while by the time they entered South Asia.
    they made charriots with spoked wheels and trained horses before contact with BMAC
    they were skilled metallurgists, but not as sophisticated as BMAC
    the spread of later Seima-Turbino through the steppe has been associated with the casting of metals with lost-wax techniques from BMAC
    what is more, the IE tribes seem not to have destroyed BMAC, but they took over the trading networks of BMAC, making the BMAC cities and fortresses redundant, the IE people seem to have been learning from other cultures quite fast

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorcs View Post
    That's mostly right, but they, or at least the later IE steppe cultures like Sintashta and Andronovo, become very good at making metal tools and objects, as well as efficient means of transportation (trained horses, wheels, wagons, chariots). They also must've been quite efficient in immaterial techniques like military organization and management, if not they couldn't have sustained their power and enforce their cultural ways for a long time anywhere, they would've been nothing but temporary raiders. They couldn't win those more advanced peoples if they just had strength and will, and nothing else.

    I would be wary of the way settled civilizations that were attacked by the steppe peoples portrayed them in a very dehumanizing and demeaning way. No attacked people who hates those foreigner hordes would say very good things about them. You just need to read how Romans and later Europeans portrayed the Huns and later the Mongols and Turks. Granted, they weren't "that" sophisticated, but the way they were portrayed would make us believe they were completely ignorant and primitive savages, and modern historians know that wasn't exactly the case - not when they reached Europe, anyway.

    As for the Gutians, nobody really knows if they were IE. Their few extant names don't look particularly IE to most linguists. I think people are just trying to find a direct link between the IE expansion and the Gutian invasions broadly in the same historic period. But I would be really surprised if the IE speakers were the only steppe/desert peoples to have invaded civilizations and settled societies in the Early-Mid Bronze Age. We know for sure that at least another people, Semites, expanded right in the same period and in a similar fashion, too.
    Generally agree with you although i'd say it would be wrong to compare Turkic people to Indo Europeans. When Turkic people moved out to Near East, Central Asia was a center of the Islamic Golden Age and had the world's largest city (Merv)

    On the other hand i am not a trol* or someone else's secondary account and don't know why people are claiming that. I've been reading Dienekes and Razib since 2006 and commenting with the same nickname.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cpluskx View Post
    Generally agree with you although i'd say it would be wrong to compare Turkic people to Indo Europeans. When Turkic people moved out to Near East, Central Asia was a center of the Islamic Golden Age and had the world's largest city (Merv)

    On the other hand i am not a trol* or someone else's secondary account and don't know why people are claiming that. I've been reading Dienekes and Razib since 2006 and commenting with the same nickname.
    That's right, but the Turks were also a foreign element in Central Asia, at least with absolute certainty south of Kazakhstan, the really civilized and urbanized portion of Central Asia. They were also, at least until they became fully integrated and in turn assimilated the locals (linguistically and genetically), conquerors and for a long time a co-existing ethnicity, maintaining its distinct way of life and identity, occupying ecological/economic zones not fully used by the local Islamico-Persianate cultures. I think the situation of the gradual Turkification of most of Central Asia was more akin to the expansion of IEs in the Balkans (Cucuteni-Tripolye) and especially in India, though of course similarities are just very vague and generic, for the historic periods and contexts were very different.

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    Quote Originally Posted by halfalp View Post
    Ancient studies linked with proto and late indo-europeans shows how much inclusive they were. They probably didn't care who the peasant were, if they were genetically related or not. And most of exterior women could have been take as concubine, only focusing on the rulling elite, like actually most of the society even today. Just like vikings becoming count in western europe, they didn't care about lost their culture and their friend if they could have power and honor, this is pretty much how those guys had to be.
    I also believe they were inclusive at least initially and at least for women (concubines, arranged marriages, political/tribal alliances through marriage) and for potential male warriors that could strengthen their bands. I doubt they, who were probably not the largest ethnic population in the continent, could've done so much if they hadn't had the help of many integrated peoples and circumstantial allies. That does not mean they were egalitarian or "PC", but just that they had to accept outsiders and make large-scale alliances and compromises if they were willing to expand and win over adversaries that in many cases were actually more advanced than them (much like the Romans, Germans and Turks later did).

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