Good Evening

This is my first post occasioned by receipt of my BIG Y as itemized in the subject line.

My introduction to genetic testing began when a gentleman who shared our last name wanted to prove that his Hunts were related to our de Vere Hunts of Curragh Chase and by definition from the marriage of Henry Hunt(e) of Gosfield and Lady Jane de Vere, Castle Hedingham, of the family of the Earls of Oxford.

However, in the end only de Vere Hunts matched each other but in the outgrowth now there is a Hunt FTDNA group with over 400 samples representing over 100 distinct families with that royal appointment regional name that began with William the Conqueror.

Those who matched went back 8-9 generations with GD's ranging from 0 to 4, but no individual more than two GD away from the mean - which is the better way to look at GD. Though as superior studies have shown GD STRs will never be able to correlate by formula on the paper tree.

To give due diligence, we examined exhaustively the lines - and aided with the fact that all were public figures and had hand me down genetic titles, wills, social milieu and so on - even to the point of disproving a non-consequential marriage citation in Burkes (but of considerable positive proof on the maternal line and linkages through autosomal).

In the end, the original project manager looking at all the results concluded that the genetic line for our family was as the record showed of Henry and Lady Jane. Interestingly enough, a couple of other British Hunts with known lines proved to be another J far away on the Haplogroup tree and an R proving as suspected that the regional appointment geographically held for a long time.

As a bit of collateral information, we took a look at what we could learn from autosomal. So using my father's sample who was was the most recent of our various lines to leave Ireland where we located as Anglo Irish. Ethnicity results are useless for us as it varies supremely between companies - which makes sense because my father's paternal line has over 120 different counties through Eastern, Northern and Western Europe, Ireland, Caribbean, England, France in ancestry over the last 450 years. But the only location that came up in all his genetic groups was Essex, and and the only specific two towns were Colchester and Braintree - which are the environs of Gosfield and Castle Hedingham.

However, there is an odd constant in my father's ethnicity which is Middle East of 2-3 percent. We do know of our von Buttlar beginnings (I have several lines from them) with Henry I's Ulsterman butler (believed to be a de Brionne) picking up a Syrian noblewoman, Medidda as his wife prize of the crusades. Actually, the only reason that this comes to historical light is that with regime change that came at Henry II, two monarchs later, they and their son were forced to flee and took refuge at Fulda Monastary, where Achilles' son Hartnild became involved very early. There is also middle eastern royalty in the lines but that is so far back. Perhaps pure junk or another unusual convergeance with something else from the broader region.

So now the final results. They were quite a surprise as we find ourselves as a was Jew/not now in the heart of the Jewish Haplogroup tree. While there are different datings for our end marker, of course there are also different dates between liberal and conservative Jews on the dating for their beginning as well which produces a couple of moving targets. However in the end, I believe it safe to say that we would have been Jews during the period of the Torah and likely into CE. As we know, chemical changes happen with separation and migration and not conversion (though tongue in cheek the none scientific proselytizers may think otherwise) - so change is likely in terms of the latter when the choice is most extreme between good and bad consequences. That was the way in those days.

Knowing that they did come to France and anticipating the most natural origin being Jews who moved there directly and fairly early in time - males displaced from their families by interventions like the Judean guard - at this point well separated from their sister clade who went to Eastern Europe and due to the homogeneity of their maternal lines retain high levels of Ashkenazi today. By vivid contrast, the pattern of early French Jewry seems to have been very integrationist in all respects. Perhaps the two clades perfect symbolize the bifurcation of Judaism today, albeit with those who left a millennium ago or more.

On Essex, it is interesting to note that they have an FTDNA area site which due to a couple of questions now has moderator again who has sorted the results. A couple of other J's show up, and a bit more variety overall than a typical English county. I am even surprised to find a Fitch - who intermarried with our family appears to have been a T. I have put out a question in Nova Scotia genealogy as the name comes back in the person of my great great grandfather - to see if anyone has tested that common core name here.

It has occurred to me that as Y results communities show more results, these samples may be more valuable than in tracing the diverse history of the area - which may not in the end be all particularly "Anglo- Saxon" and also working particularly with old Norman British families who have fairly decent trees and our luxury of knowing that that they came from France in 1066 and following - particularly useful during the testing ban in France and with so little known about early French Jewry - who will not likely have traces of Ashkenazi in their ethnicity results today - due to conversion before 1066.

In finding that date, a thorough review of French history shows that the only time that a sustained and extreme convert or die - that resulted in considerably conversions occurred during the 35 year reign of Robert II - and so at 1000 CE is about right in a number of ways.

Should any range of the conclusions above be as they are - perhaps a new way to look at our Judean-Christian in which we were steeped and sing with a different slant, the old spiritual hymn, "Were you there..." not as an armchair Gentile - anymore.

So in the end of this process - maybe a new beginning - and now to turn to my great grandmother's family who comes out at a surprising G.

I would be interested to hear of the ways in which others have responded to findings that flipped their sense of identity (although that also came to me with the discovery of my fourth great grandfather's past as well as a Baltic Noble with strange connections all over including the Russian palace) and/or ways in which they were able to draw together the various tools at our disposal.