Movements and genetic change between the Chalcolithic and Bronze Age in the Levant

Agamemmnon from Anthrogenica who is apparently as specialist of Afro-Asiatic languages, believe that ( something like that ) ; Semitic languages wich are genetically closer to Berbero-Lybian and Cushitic, was formed by the input of maybe an Ergative language, wich modern exemple would the closest to Northwest Caucasian, but ancestraly could be related with languages such as Elamit, Sumerian, Hurrian...

I didn't found the thread were he said that, but it was just a few times ago.

Fascinating, since Hurro-Urartian (before expanding southward) was just north of Upper Mesopotamia, and Sumerian just south of it. More and more I think those scholars who thought Semitic came from the Levant and preferably from the south (South Levant or even nearer to the Arabian peninsula) were wrong, and in fact Proto-Semitic was a "new" language that absorbed one of the earlier Afro-Asiatic languages of Natufian Levant (probably already subject to significant Anatolian_Neo influences) and changed it with an intensive foreign Iranian/CHG input. Genetically at least it's what makes most sense, and it also makes sense in the early attestation of the language family if we consider the possibility that its expansion was still going on, and the takeover of Sumer by Akkadians around 2400-2300 B.C. was part of that southward movement that would also have affected the South Levant and thence Arabia.
 
An example is Jordanian BA, which best-fits with the addition of 22% Kalavan (NE Armenia early BA) and 10% Satsurbia (Georgia PHG) to a mix of Levantine Neolithic and some Natufian.

Curiously, Kalavan was at least partly R1b (a brother clade of P297).

[1] "distance%=0.2912 / distance=0.002912"

Kura-Araxes_Kalavan

CHG 54.0
Barcin_N 28.6
Abdul_Hosein_N 11.2
Natufian 6.2

But isn't Kalavan (2619-2465 B.C.) a bit too late to be a good proxy for the population that probably mixed with more Levantine-like people (Afro-Asiatic only makes sense, compared with all the African branches, if it came from the Levant and ultimately Natufian) and started to spread Proto-Semitic dialects? Proto-Semitic is dated to before ~3500 B.C. By ~2500 B.C. the Akkadians, already a specifically East Semitic branch, were already well known by the Sumerians and lived to their north and northwest. I assume the bulk of the ethnogenesis of that BA Levant population would've happened before Akkadians appear in the historic record, maybe even before 3000 B.C.

I keep getting a necessary mix of Iranian_Chalcolithic+CHG (maybe a much more CHG-enriched population with a lot of Iranian_Neolithic too?) as the main if I use only Chalcolithic and Neolithic samples, assuming that the Proto-Semitic-speaking population was already pretty much formed. Kalavan doesn't seem to fit that (too little Iran_Neo). Whatever, I guess that a so-called "very CHG-enriched population related to Iranian_Chalcolithic" would end up looking quite similar to Armenia_Kalavan, maybe just a bit more Iranian-like, so we both may be finding similar results in fact. Another population south of Armenia, closer to Upper Mesopotamia (and also to the Zagros) would fit that scenario perfectly. I just think we haven't found "the" right population (not that many samples from the Chalcolithic and EBA in that region) that introgressed into a much more Levant_Neo/Natufian-like population as it moved to the flatlands and formed the Proto-Semitic and early Semitic tribes which later contributed to other populations of the Levant, Mesopotamia and Arabia.

Using 10 dimensions (and I did include Armenia_Chl, Maykop, Hajji_Firuz_Chl and others):

[1] "distance%=0.2386 / distance=0.002386"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 38.85
Natufian 24.35
Seh_Gabi_ChL 18.90
CHG 10.55
Levant_N 7.35

Using more proximate 25 dimensions(often less reliable and realistic in my opinion, so I don't take its results too seriously), in one model adding EMBA Kalavan and in the other, not:

[1] "distance%=2.6335 / distance=0.026335"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 84.75
Tepe_Hissar_ChL 14.00
Kura-Araxes_Kalavan 1.25

[1] "distance%=2.2745 / distance=0.022745"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 23.7
Natufian 23.6
Seh_Gabi_ChL 21.6
Levant_N 20.9
Kura-Araxes_Kalavan 10.3

*** NOW WITHOUT KALAVAN...***

[1] "distance%=2.6339 / distance=0.026339"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 85.1
Tepe_Hissar_ChL 14.9

[1] "distance%=2.6727 / distance=0.026727"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 86.8
Namazga_Eneolithic 13.2


*** By the way, Tepe Hissar was like this, still mostly Iranian_Neolithic:

[1] "distance%=0.3705 / distance=0.003705"

Tepe_Hissar_ChL

Abdul_Hosein_N 72.8
Barcin_N 14.3
CHG 12.8


Let's not forget that much of the Levant was under Hurrian rule, but that was much later in the MLBA, nonetheless what matters is that it's possible that this CHG/Iranian input may have come with different ethnicities from different places, not all of it with the "primordial" Caucasus/Iran+Levant Semitic-speaking expansion that defined the post-BA Levant linguistically and culturally.
 
But isn't Kalavan (2619-2465 B.C.) a bit too late to be a good proxy for the population that probably mixed with more Levantine-like people (Afro-Asiatic only makes sense, compared with all the African branches, if it came from the Levant and ultimately Natufian) and started to spread Proto-Semitic dialects? Proto-Semitic is dated to before ~3500 B.C. By ~2500 B.C. the Akkadians, already a specifically East Semitic branch, were already well known by the Sumerians and lived to their north and northwest. I assume the bulk of the ethnogenesis of that BA Levant population would've happened before Akkadians appear in the historic record, maybe even before 3000 B.C.

Why not derive AA directly from Africa? Natufian wouldn't be needed, and indeed it seems as though they suffered some male-biased replacement in the later Neolithic.
 
[1] "distance%=0.2912 / distance=0.002912"

Kura-Araxes_Kalavan

CHG 54.0
Barcin_N 28.6
Abdul_Hosein_N 11.2
Natufian 6.2

But isn't Kalavan (2619-2465 B.C.) a bit too late to be a good proxy for the population that probably mixed with more Levantine-like people (Afro-Asiatic only makes sense, compared with all the African branches, if it came from the Levant and ultimately Natufian) and started to spread Proto-Semitic dialects? Proto-Semitic is dated to before ~3500 B.C. By ~2500 B.C. the Akkadians, already a specifically East Semitic branch, were already well known by the Sumerians and lived to their north and northwest. I assume the bulk of the ethnogenesis of that BA Levant population would've happened before Akkadians appear in the historic record, maybe even before 3000 B.C.

I keep getting a necessary mix of Iranian_Chalcolithic+CHG (maybe a much more CHG-enriched population with a lot of Iranian_Neolithic too?) as the main if I use only Chalcolithic and Neolithic samples, assuming that the Proto-Semitic-speaking population was already pretty much formed. Kalavan doesn't seem to fit that (too little Iran_Neo). Whatever, I guess that a so-called "very CHG-enriched population related to Iranian_Chalcolithic" would end up looking quite similar to Armenia_Kalavan, maybe just a bit more Iranian-like, so we both may be finding similar results in fact. Another population south of Armenia, closer to Upper Mesopotamia (and also to the Zagros) would fit that scenario perfectly. I just think we haven't found "the" right population (not that many samples from the Chalcolithic and EBA in that region) that introgressed into a much more Levant_Neo/Natufian-like population as it moved to the flatlands and formed the Proto-Semitic and early Semitic tribes which later contributed to other populations of the Levant, Mesopotamia and Arabia.

Using 10 dimensions (and I did include Armenia_Chl, Maykop, Hajji_Firuz_Chl and others):

[1] "distance%=0.2386 / distance=0.002386"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 38.85
Natufian 24.35
Seh_Gabi_ChL 18.90
CHG 10.55
Levant_N 7.35

Using more proximate 25 dimensions(often less reliable and realistic in my opinion, so I don't take its results too seriously), in one model adding EMBA Kalavan and in the other, not:

[1] "distance%=2.6335 / distance=0.026335"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 84.75
Tepe_Hissar_ChL 14.00
Kura-Araxes_Kalavan 1.25

[1] "distance%=2.2745 / distance=0.022745"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 23.7
Natufian 23.6
Seh_Gabi_ChL 21.6
Levant_N 20.9
Kura-Araxes_Kalavan 10.3

*** NOW WITHOUT KALAVAN...***

[1] "distance%=2.6339 / distance=0.026339"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 85.1
Tepe_Hissar_ChL 14.9

[1] "distance%=2.6727 / distance=0.026727"

Levant_BA_South

Levant_ChL 86.8
Namazga_Eneolithic 13.2


*** By the way, Tepe Hissar was like this, still mostly Iranian_Neolithic:

[1] "distance%=0.3705 / distance=0.003705"

Tepe_Hissar_ChL

Abdul_Hosein_N 72.8
Barcin_N 14.3
CHG 12.8


Let's not forget that much of the Levant was under Hurrian rule, but that was much later in the MLBA, nonetheless what matters is that it's possible that this CHG/Iranian input may have come with different ethnicities from different places, not all of it with the "primordial" Caucasus/Iran+Levant Semitic-speaking expansion that defined the post-BA Levant linguistically and culturally.

Good post.

Yes, Kalavan is probably too late to be ancestral to the Levantine immigrants, but I think it still represents a reasonable proxy for them. I would just say that the aDNA that first admixed into the Levant looks to have been mostly from a Kalavan-like population, by my calculations more like Kalavan that other earlier Armenian or Iranian samples. To be more precise, it looks to be from a Kalavan-like population skewed towards mainstream Iranian, so might well be closer still to Chalcolithic NW Iran.

The Kura-Araxes culture appears to have spread into Iran before moving across to the Levant, so it would probably have picked up some Iranian admixture around Van/Urmia and perhaps moved on further from there. This could still identify Kura-Araxes as the main culture bringing these people into the Levant.

It might also be the case that this incoming population moved in gradually over a long period, as later Levantine populations have a higher proportion of its DNA; but difficult to tell with fairly few samples. If this were a gradual process, I suppose the incoming population might have assimilated an early Semitic language already spoken in the Levant.

Yes, the Hurrians came later, probably related people from a similar direction, but most likely with additional EHG from North of the Caucasus.
 
Why not derive AA directly from Africa? Natufian wouldn't be needed, and indeed it seems as though they suffered some male-biased replacement in the later Neolithic.

Oh I probably expressed myself in an ambiguous way. My assumption is that AA came directly from Africa, but Semitic and possibly also Egyptian (and Cushitic perhaps too?) came from Natufians who in turn got North African ancestry probably via the Kebaran and ultimately from the Halfan/Khubanniyan (recent analyses have suggested that it wasn't that Iberomaurusians had a lot of Natufian ancestry, it was actually that both of them had a lot of North African West Eurasian-derived ancestry). Then the only thing clearly connecting West Asian AA (Semitic) and the AA branches is Natufians, not Anatolians, Iranians or Caucasians, so probably AA was picked up by those CHG/Iran-rich people in the Levant or in a heavily "Levantinized" population (which I believe lived in Upper Mesopotamia near the Zagros and Armenian/Kurdish Highlands). It's just a matter of chronology. I don't think all AA branches came directly from the Proto-AA source in a star-shaped expansion with no posterior connections, but rather from distinct later offshoots derived ultimately from that Proto-AA population.
 
The people living in Copper-Age Anatolia, were autosomally pretty much the same as they were in the bronze-age according to the Willerslev et al graphic. These were those blue-eyed migrants that went to settle down in the Levant. :


https://www.livescience.com/63396-ancient-israel-immigration-turkey-iran.html

WeXhhXp.jpg


https://science.sciencemag.org/content/360/6396/eaar7711

Perhaps the occasional depiction of fair features in ancient Mediterranean people doesn't necessarily have to come from Northern European sources. Because they were present in people coming in from Anatolia who had them as early as the copper age. The Bronze-Age Anatolian who spread west, that are exclusive of the ones that went down into the Levant; would probably have these features too. I don't think it was the norm phenotypically, but the mutations were there.
 

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