North African admixture in Western Andalusia and chrstian conquest

martin chaide

Regular Member
Reaction score
Hi, this is my first post, i hope you find it interesting

A basic study on mitochondrial DNA

The percentage of the North African haplogroup E1b1b1b (formerly known as E3b2) in the Iberian peninsula is around 5 percent, about 10/11 times lower than in North Africa. Based on this it has been estimated that the percentage of male north african genes in iIberia should be at most ten percent. These lineages are more abundant in the peninsular west than in the east, where the Moorish population lived segregated from the Christians, being expelled for the most part between 1609 and 1614. However, there is no significant difference in a north / south direction, without any notable differences between the Andalusian population and the rest of Spain.

As for mitochondrial DNA, which is transmitted exclusively through the maternal route, note that the African frequencies are three> M1, L and U6. Their percentages are not large and in the case of L vary enormously from some north African populations to others (5-40%), so in this case it is difficult to make an estimation.

However, there is a haplogroup h2a2a frequency, called the Revised Cambridge Reference Secuence (rCRS). This sequence is used as a starting point to determine all others. If a haplotype does not fit within that frequency, by convention it is considered a mutation (not rCRS). Almost all rCRS belong to haplogroups H, HV and R, which are typically European.

That said, it should be noted that almost half the inhabitants of western Europe are rCRS, while in North Africa they are only 15 percent, in Spain they are around 40 percent, decreasing clearly in the south as can be seen in the next table. Andalusia has been presented according to the old division in kingdoms (reinos), previous to the creation of the provinces in century XIX. The number of rCRS is also compared to the Berber haplogroup U6.

table 1: rCRS and U6 in modern north african and iberian population

N rCRS % U6 %
Castile 539 218 40,45 6 1,11
North of Iberia 280 110 39,29 2 0,71
Mediterranean coast 621 243 39,13 16 2,58
Aragon 69 27 39,13 1 1,45
Extremadura and Leon 335 121 36,12 11 3,28
Reino de Jaen 154 51 33,12 6 3,90
Reino de Cordoba 214 70 32,71 4 1,87
Reino de Granada 349 100 28,65 3 0,86
Reino de Sevilla 285 64 22,46 16 5,61
North of Morocco 92 14 15,22 8 8,70

As can be seen, there is a clear correlation between rCRS and U6, so that the more rCRS minus U6, which was to be expected. The striking exception to this is the ancient kingdom of Granada, where this rule do not matches at all. This cannot be attributed only to statistical variance.

In the case of Western Andalusia, that is to say, Hueva Sevilla and Cádiz, there seems to be a greater genetic proximity to North Africa than to most of Spain, the existence of this strong discrepancy after seven centuries of genetic admixture, indicates very clearly that the Christian repopulation that soon followed the christian conquest is a myth rather than a historical reality, at least as far as the female population is concerned, whose composition should not have varied substantially after the conquest. The same has been shown for the Canary Islands or the Americas, which experienced the same type of asymmetric Castilian colonization a few centuries later.

Source: Meta-Analysis of Mitochondrial DNA Variation in the Iberian Peninsula, Published: July 21, 2016

This thread has been viewed 2459 times.