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Thursday, April 18, 2019

Early chariot riders of Transcaucasia came from...


I'm finding it increasingly difficult nowadays to fully appreciate all of the ancient DNA samples that are accumulating in my dataset. But it's not entirely my fault.

Among the hundreds of ancient samples published last year there was a couple of Middle Bronze Age (MBA) individuals from what is now Armenia labeled "Lchashen Metsamor" (see here). I wasn't planning to do much with these samples because, even after reading the Nature paper that they came with a couple times over, I didn't have a clue what they were about. But after some digging around, I now know that their people, those associated with the Lchashen Metsamor archeological culture, were among the earliest in Transcaucasia, and indeed the Near East, to use the revolutionary spoked-wheel horse chariot. How awesome is that?

The invention of the spoked-wheel chariot is generally credited to the Middle Bronze Age Sintashta culture of the Trans-Ural steppe in Central Asia, and its rapid spread is often associated with the early expansions of Indo-European languages deep into Asia. On the other hand, some have argued that this type of chariot was first developed in the Near East, and directly derived from solid-wheeled wagons pulled by donkeys.

It's now obvious, thanks to ancient DNA, that the Sintashta people were by and large migrants to Central Asia from somewhere in Eastern Europe, and that they didn't harbor any recent ancestry from the Near East. So if chariot technology spread into the steppes from the Near East, then it did so without any accompanying gene flow, which is possible but not entirely convincing. This begs the question of whether the Lchashen Metsamor population was of Sintashta-related origin, because if it was, then this would corroborate the consensus that spoked-wheel chariots were introduced into Transcaucasia from the steppes to the north.

Below is a Principal Component Analysis (PCA) of West Eurasian genetic variation. It does suggest that the Lchashen Metsamor pair (labeled Armenia_MBA_Lchashen), as well as most of the other currently available samples from what is now Armenia dating to the Middle to Late Bronze Age (MLBA), harbor some steppe ancestry. That's because they appear to form a cline between samples associated with the Sintashta and Kura-Araxes cultures. Of course, the Kura-Araxes culture was a major Early Bronze Age (EBA) archeological phenomenon centered on Transcaucasia and surrounds, so its population can be reasonably assumed to have formed the genetic base of most subsequent populations in the region. The relevant PCA datasheet is available here.


To investigate the possibility of Sintashta-related admixture in Lchashen Metsamor with formal methods, I ran a series of mixture models with the qpAdm software. Here are the three statistically most sound outcomes that I was able to come up with for Lchashen Metsamor:

Armenia_MBA_Lchashen
CWC_Kuyavia 0.183±0.036
Kura-Araxes_Kaps 0.817±0.036
chisq 13.941
tail prob 0.378021
Full output

Armenia_MBA_Lchashen
Balkans_BA_I2163 0.193±0.045
Kura-Araxes_Kaps 0.807±0.045

chisq 14.780
tail prob 0.321267
Full output

Armenia_MBA_Lchashen
Kura-Araxes_Kaps 0.788±0.043
Sintashta_MLBA 0.212±0.043

chisq 14.871
tail prob 0.315451
Full output

I sorted the output by "tail prob", but the fact that Sintashta_MLBA is in third place isn't a problem because the stats in all of these models are basically identical. Indeed, CWC_Kuyavia (Corded Ware culture samples from present-day Kuyavia, North-Central Poland) and Balkans_BA_I2163 (a Bronze Age singleton from what is now Bulgaria) are both very similar and probably closely related to each other and to the Sintashta samples.

Interestingly, and, I'd say, importantly, ancients from the steppe that are closest to Lchashen Metsamor in both space and time, but not particularly closely related to the Sintashta people, don't work too well as a mixture source in such models.

Armenia_MBA_Lchashen
Kubano-Tersk 0.184±0.046
Kura-Araxes_Kaps 0.816±0.046

chisq 22.179
tail prob 0.0526526
Full output

A couple of months ago I suggested that populations associated with the Early to Middle Bronze Age (EMBA) Catacomb culture were the vector for the spread of steppe ancestry into what is now Armenia during the MLBA (see here). After taking a closer look at the Lchashen Metsamor samples, I now think that the peoples of the Sintashta and related cultures were also important in this process. If so, they may have moved from the steppe into Transcaucasia both from the west via the Balkans and the east via Central Asia, and brought with them spoked-wheel chariots. I don't have a clue what language they spoke, but I'm guessing that it may have been something Indo-European.

See also...

The mystery of the Sintashta people

A potentially violent end to the Kura-Araxes Culture (Alizadeh et al. 2018)

Late PIE ground zero now obvious; location of PIE homeland still uncertain, but...

86 comments:

Davidski said...

Yep, I finally checked the dates on these Lchashen Metsamor samples. One has a date of ~3207 calBP. That's definitely the late Middle Bronze Age in Armenia.

By the way, it's OK to discuss the new Crusaders paper here, but I won't be blogging about it until I get the genotype data. Here's the link...

https://www.cell.com/ajhg/fulltext/S0002-9297(19)30111-9

Hugh Capet said...

@Davidski

Thanks for this enlightening post. I appreciate the time and effort you dedicate to presenting this information with great eloquence and verbal fluidity. My question in regards to this post is, what evidence is there that the people of the Sintashta culture migrated to Anatolia and the Caucasus from Eastern Europe and the Balkans as opposed to a migration from Central Asia through Iran? Furthermore, how convinced are you that these samples harbor definite Sintashta ancestry and not ancestry from related cultures? I think a lot more studies need to be dedicated to the ancient Near East, the Caucasus and Iran in particular, in order to gain a greater understanding of the migrations from the steppes to these regions. I hope that there is more upcoming ancient DNA from the Near East, and I am glad that there is a recent published genetic study on the Crusaders. Finally, are Armenians today mostly a mixture of Caucasus Hunter Gatherers and Anatolian farmers, or do they harbor recent Near Eastern ancestry from the Levant? I think your work on the genetics of the peoples of the Caucasus should certainly be celebrated for highlighting aspects most geneticists do not bother to discuss.

Davidski said...

@Hugh Capet

My question in regards to this post is, what evidence is there that the people of the Sintashta culture migrated to Anatolia and the Caucasus from Eastern Europe and the Balkans as opposed to a migration from Central Asia through Iran?

Yes, there were probably migrations from the steppe into Anatolia and Transcaucasia via the Balkans, Caucasus and Central Asia.

The Central Asian route is almost certain, because the Indo-Aryan language is attested in eastern Anatolia during the Bronze Age.

I'm going to edit my blog post to reflect this.

Furthermore, how convinced are you that these samples harbor definite Sintashta ancestry and not ancestry from related cultures?

It might well just be Sintashta-related ancestry. Indeed, I didn't mention this in the blog post, but the Lchashen Metsamor male belongs to Y-haplogroup I, which suggests that he didn't have paternal ancestry from the Sintashta population, which is exceptionally rich in R1a-Z93.

Finally, are Armenians today mostly a mixture of Caucasus Hunter Gatherers and Anatolian farmers, or do they harbor recent Near Eastern ancestry from the Levant?

Armenians do have Levant-related ancestry, but it's hard to say how and when their ancestors acquired it. It may already have been present in some Kura-Araxes groups.

We'll need more ancient DNA from across space and time from the Near East and Transcaucasia to work this out.

Hugh Capet said...

@Davidski

Thanks for the enlightening reply. I had another question. How much of their ancestry do you think contemporary Armenians derive from Bronze Age Armenians, and do you think that the Armenian language spread to what is today Armenia from the Caucasus or from Anatolia via the Balkans?

Davidski said...

@Hugh Capet

Thanks for the enlightening reply. I had another question. How much of their ancestry do you think contemporary Armenians derive from Bronze Age Armenians, and do you think that the Armenian language spread to what is today Armenia from the Caucasus or from Anatolia via the Balkans?

Based on the currently available ancient data, I'd say that Armenians are mostly derived from Early Bronze Age Kura-Araxes populations of Transcaucasia and surrounds.

As for the Armenian language, for now I'm mainly going to go with the academic consensus on this and say that it arrived in Transcaucasia from the Balkans during the Iron Age or a little bit earlier.

Hugh Capet said...

@Davidski

Thank you, David.

Dragos said...

Although its not the main focus of your post, the missing link could be Unetice, which was the preeminent Bronze Age culture in north-central Europe. This might explain the elaborate forts in Sintashta & even the chariots there. Some of the lineages found there, e.g. I2c link to the Carpathian basin, which was a vital link to areas south, and as it seems the southern Caucasus. Given that it succeeds CWC in parts of central Europe, it would harbour CWC-like ancestry you’re detecting.

Bob Floy said...

Do the Mitanni fit into this anywhere, you think?

Davidski said...

@Dragos

I don't know yet how to link Corded Ware, Unetice, Sintashta, the Bronze Age Aegean and West Asia. I need more ancient DNA data.

So far I've got one so called Corded Ware/Proto-Unetice sample. I would need more of these and many others to be able to come up with a coherent and accurate post.

And I've never heard anything about chariot technology spreading from Central Europe to the Urals. As far as I know, the consensus is that it moved the opposite way.

Slumbery said...

@Davidski

There is the returning problem of telling apart excess Anatolian farmer ancestry from actual European farmer ancestry. nMonte is supposedly good at picking up recent drift, so it would not choose the much older Barcin_N against Sintashta if there would be a Sintashta-specific ancestry, would it?

"sample": "Armenia_IA_Lchashen_Metsamor:Average",
"fit": 2.2486,
"Kura-Araxes_Kalavan": 61.67,
"Catacomb": 23.33,
"Levant_ChL": 13.33,
"Barcin_N": 1.67,
"Sintashta_MLBA": 0,

"sample": "Armenia_MLBA:Average",
"fit": 1.6806,
"Kura-Araxes_Kalavan": 66.67,
"Catacomb": 14.17,
"Sintashta_MLBA": 10.83,
"Levant_ChL": 5.83,
"Barcin_N": 2.5,


Now, Armenia MLBA and Lchashen_Metsamor are not really the same, but the Lchashen_Metsamor the ones that do not seem to be very fond of a specific Sintashta ancestry.
(They both undoubtedly have steppe ancestry tough.)

The fit is significantly improved for Lchashen_Metsamor when more eastern samples are included, so a Central Asian connection is probable:

"sample": "Armenia_IA_Lchashen_Metsamor:Average",
"fit": 1.6327,
"Kura-Araxes_Kalavan": 40.83,
"Catacomb": 22.5,
"Dzharkutan1_BA": 18.33,
"Barcin_N": 9.17,
"Levant_ChL": 9.17,
"Sintashta_MLBA": 0,

However using just Iran works almost as well.

"sample": "Armenia_IA_Lchashen_Metsamor:Average",
"fit": 1.7208,
"Hajji_Firuz_ChL": 41.67,
"Catacomb": 25,
"Kura-Araxes_Kalavan": 24.17,
"Levant_ChL": 5,
"Barcin_N": 2.5,
"Sintashta_MLBA": 1.67,

There seem to be some complicated mixing going on, but I am not convinced that Lchashen_Metsamor is had much to do with Sintashta. Armenia_MLBA is more so.

Davidski said...

@Bob Floy

Mitanni are closely associated with one of the population movements from the steppe into Anatolia, the one that brought Indo-Aryan into the region.

But I don't have a clue whether they're related in any direct way to Lchashen Metsamor.

It seems that we have signals of some significant population movements from the steppe into the south Caucasus, probably from the west, north and east, and at about the same time Anatolian and Indo-Aryan languages are attested in Anatolia.

So there's a picture emerging, but the details escape me for the time being.

Slumbery said...

@Davidski

If I use the same Kura-Araxes samples as you the results are different. And that adds the additional question: how much this is effected by internal variation between KA that is possibly not fully mapped?

"sample": "Armenia_IA_Lchashen_Metsamor:Average",
"fit": 1.9666,
"Kura-Araxes_Kaps": 61.67,
"Catacomb": 20.83,
"Levant_ChL": 11.67,
"Sintashta_MLBA": 5.83,
"Barcin_N": 0,

"sample": "Armenia_MLBA:Average",
"fit": 1.2296,
"Kura-Araxes_Kaps": 64.17,
"Sintashta_MLBA": 15.83,
"Catacomb": 13.33,
"Levant_ChL": 6.67,
"Barcin_N": 0,

Nevertheless, it is still very Catacomb heavy even in this set-up.

And with adding some South-Central Asia:

"sample": "Armenia_IA_Lchashen_Metsamor:Average",
"fit": 1.3887,
"Kura-Araxes_Kaps": 43.33,
"Catacomb": 18.33,
"Dzharkutan1_BA": 16.67,
"Levant_ChL": 11.67,
"Sintashta_MLBA": 5.83,
"Barcin_N": 4.17,

Slumbery said...

Based on this if I wanted to assign the entire impact to just one population movement (I am not sure about that), I would say it is a Catacomb-heavy southern Andronovo group from Central Asia.

Samuel Andrews said...

Is it possible the Indo-Aryan elite in Mitanni came straight from Eurasian Steppe not India?

Davidski said...

@Slumbery

The assumption you're making is that Global25/nMonte will pick the most relevant mixture sources when offered a lot of choices.

But in reality it may or may not do that, because if you give it too many similar choices, nMonte will just do whatever it can to get the best fit, and your results might be an artifact of this.

And the problem will be worse if there are no real proximate mixture sources available.

This is what I get when I copy my qpAdm Sintashta model. It looks very similar to my qpAdm result. Is it perfect? Nowhere close, but the fit is OK and I think this is an informative effort, that does reflect reality at some level.

[1] "distance%=3.453"

Armenia_MBA_Lchashen

Kura-Araxes_Kaps,75.4
Sintashta_MLBA,24.6

Should I try and improve the model? Sure, but I would have to do this very carefully, maybe by adding one population at a time to see how the fits improve. In any case, I wouldn't use more than four populations in the final model, and I'd try to make sure that they're all quite different.

The main point I'm making is that there are indeed some advantages to using Global25/nMonte over qpAdm, like being able to test more mixture sources at a time, and using recent drift to get more realistic models, but you can't overdo it.

Slumbery said...

@Davidski

The fact that nMonte's over-fit _might_ screw things up somewhat does not not mean that a five or six way model is necessarily useless. On the same right I could say your two-way model is an obvious oversimplification. You admit it is a simplification and could be refined. At the other hand I also agree that my complicated model should not be taken literally, so the gap is not that big between us.

Nevertheless my successive posts are somewhat of a though process. I came to the conclusion that there is probably some Sintashta ancestry here, not just in Armenia_MLBA but also in Lchashen_Metsamor, but it is probably from a rather mixed Andronovo group.

Davidski said...

@Slumbery

The danger that both approaches face is that minor admixtures can create various illusions, that's why I think it's best to try a lot of samples and combinations of samples, but in limited models, and if the fits are still poor (much more than 3) then it might be useful to carefully move onto four or five way models.

Bob Floy said...

@Davidski

"I don't know yet how to link Corded Ware, Unetice, Sintashta, the Bronze Age Aegean and West Asia. I need more ancient DNA data."

This pretty much answered the question.
IIRC it was believed by some that the Catacomb culture had to do with that, and with the Indo-Aryan expansions in general, if fact some evidence of this was presented by a Soviet archeologist back in the 80s. But that probably dosen't jive with the ancient DNA we have at this point.

@Sam

"Is it possible the Indo-Aryan elite in Mitanni came straight from Eurasian Steppe not India? "

I actually never heard it suggested that they had gotten there from India. If there was a Sintashta-like incursion into Armenia, then it may have to do with that, I'm thinking(tentatively)?

Dragos said...

@ Davidski

''I don't know yet how to link Corded Ware, Unetice, Sintashta, the Bronze Age Aegean and West Asia. I need more ancient DNA data.

So far I've got one so called Corded Ware/Proto-Unetice sample. I would need more of these and many others to be able to come up with a coherent and accurate post.''

I think there are already some emerging links. As we know, the Unetice groups appears to supplant earlier groups in central Europe and served as a link between south of the Carpathians and areas to the north (bidirectional, of course). In Scandinavia, we are still yet to account for the appearance of I1 in the post-Battle Axe era.
We are seeing that ''southern IE areas'' such as putative Thracian, Mycenean, etc had their own basis, from a specific selection of already present (so-called ''farmer'') lineages.
Dare I say, I think the closest persons from the pre-aDNA era to have predicted the emergence of PIE were the Sherrats.

Slumbery said...

@Davidski

This kind of a Scylla and Charybdis situation there. When you do not have a reference that is particularly close to the real source, jut picking the best fit from the available ones can be also misleading. A multi-way admixture from the same sources into both the reference and the test population can create an illusion of admixture from the reference to the test population.
(Again, for now I came to the conclusion that this is not the case here.)

Samuel Andrews said...

@Bob Floy,
"I actually never heard it suggested that they had gotten there from India. "

I assumed they came from India from the people who wrote the Rig Veda. If, Aryan charioteers formed as a warrior elite in Mitanni that must be what they did in India.

This would mean, they were not just going to India but to other places as well. This makes them a more interesting people. The picture I get is, warriors on chariots singing elaborate Rig Veda hymns.

Slumbery said...

@Dragos

Unetice seems to be pretty straightforward CWC + some extra local TRB/GAC.

I imagine them as a southward expansion of not yet directly sampled West Baltic Battle Axe population from NE Germany / NW Poland.
Actually they are very closely related to Netherlanden Beakers.

Now, some Sintashta samples to have some affinity to some Beaker groups. I did some tests about that a half year back, but dropped it, because it seemed an implausible connection.

Let's try something simple:

"sample": "Sintashta_MLBA:Average",
"fit": 1.131,
"Beaker_Bavaria": 61.67,
"Poltavka": 38.33,


Now, is this plausible? It seems to be a very deep Western connection, I find it hard to believe and it is not like CWC is such a bad proxy:

"sample": "Sintashta_MLBA:Average",
"fit": 1.6512,
"CWC_Baltic": 94.17,
"Poltavka": 5.83,

Especially if we drop in some extra local famer ancestry:

"sample": "Sintashta_MLBA:Average",
"fit": 1.0143,
"Poltavka": 45.83,
"CWC_Baltic": 34.17,
"Poland_GAC": 20,

With Unetice:

"sample": "Sintashta_MLBA:Average",
"fit": 1.3903,
"Germany_Unetice": 66.67,
"Poltavka": 33.33,

"sample": "Sintashta_MLBA:Average",
"fit": 1.231,
"Poltavka": 54.17,
"Germany_Unetice": 30,
"Poland_GAC": 15.83,

(Note, Unetice_Poland is worse fit, I tried.)

This does not work better than CWC Baltic. The fit without GAC is better simply because Unetice already have some extra TRB/GAC ancestry above CWC Baltic.

I'd say the link between all these groups (Beaker, Unetice, Sintashta) is CWC and it does not need to be more specific than that. Especially considering that the dominant YDNA of these three groups are different (+ they can't be plausibly connected linguistically either), so there was probably no direct population connection between Unetice and Sintashta in either direction and close cultural links seem to be unlikely to me too.
Also Sintashta supposedly have a good archaeological continuity with Abasevo and Abasevo is older than Unetice (and does not show apparent western connections either).

I do not know how Mycenians and Greeks come into this picture.




Davidski said...

@Samuel Andrews

I wasn't implying that the Indo-Aryans who apparently became the Mitanni elite migrated to Anatolia from India.

The point I was making was that it seemed more plausible that they got there from the steppe via Central Asia and Iran rather than via the Balkans.

This also accommodates the Indo-Aryan spread into India, via a closely related population that decided to go south instead of west in Central Asia.

Philippe said...

“The Chinese words used to describe the chariot, parts of the wheel, and the axle were borrowed from Indo-European sources. Even the word for “horse”, a cognate in Mongolic, Korean, Japanese, and Chinese, suggests a single origin, possibly during one wave of contact across the steppes. Archaeologically, the evidence for Western sources is overwhelming, for it is now possible to compare dated chariots from China with those excavated in Western sites. Foremost among the latter is the site of Lchashen in Armenia, between the Caspian and Black Seas. Dated to about 1500 BCE, a burial at Lchashen hold the remains of two chariots. Their distinctive design features include wooden wheels one metre across, lined with two bent wooden felloes. Each wheel had 28 wooden spokes and turned on a fixed axle that supported the chariot box in the center.[…] Numerous rock engravings of chariots found across central Asia depict a similar vehicle; while not precisely dated, they nevertheless illustrate the widespread presence of horse-drawn chariots. The similarity between the Chinese chariot and those seen in Armenia is so precise as to rule out any likelihood of an independent invention. […] Both the linguistic and the archaeological evidence concur that the chariot was of Western origin."

Higham, C., Encyclopedia of Ancient Asian Civilizations, 2004, p.71.

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=...page&q&f=false

Samuel Andrews said...

@Davidski,
"I wasn't implying that the Indo-Aryans who apparently became the Mitanni elite migrated to Anatolia from India."

That's what I thought. I didn't say you thought that.

"The point I was making was that it seemed more plausible that they got there from the steppe via Central Asia and Iran rather than via the Balkans."

This is what I find fascinating & surprising.

Philippe said...

Working link:

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=H1c1UIEVH9gC&pg=PA70&lpg=PA70&dq=China+chariot+origin+encyclopedia&source=bl&ots=5hd6dwtpW3&sig=ACfU3U1OUMg2RZxbbFFbFCT_vOtPuOG9fw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwid9IOE35TgAhUiTxUIHeVQC-kQ6AEwGXoECAUQAQ#v=onepage&q&f=false

Dragos said...

@ Slumberry

“Unetice seems to be pretty straightforward CWC + some extra local TRB/GAC.

I imagine them as a southward expansion of not yet directly sampled West Baltic Battle Axe population from NE Germany / NW Poland.
Actually they are very closely related to Netherlanden Beakers.”

everyone on here is obsessed with Dutch Beaker :)
the genesis of Unetice is pretty clear
It’s cultural model differs to CWC or Battle axe, and throws back to the Carpathian Basin (weapons, burials style, etc)
It’s lineages differ to TRB & GAC, instead link to Boleraz, and some LN Tisza cultures
Far from being some Baltic culture; it’s an advanced carptho-Danubian culture which conquered mitteleuropa


“Also Sintashta supposedly have a good archaeological continuity with Abasevo and Abasevo is older than Unetice (and does not show apparent western connections either). ”

No western connections apart from the 35% EEF
I’m not sure how much continuity we can guess at present b/w Abashevo and Sintashta given the lack of aDNA
The sudden increase in complexity after 2000 BC in the Urals warns against it ; as does the EEF admixture.
I’m looking toward MDC; which falls into the european Bronze Age orbit


Bob Floy said...

@Sam

"The picture I get is, warriors on chariots singing elaborate Rig Veda hymns."

No doubt about that, but I think that they were a Sintashta-adjacent steppe offshoot that went south, probably at the same time their close relatives were moving into south Asia.

Aram said...

Thanks Davidski for the post.

It is also interesting that this model has also a good fit.

Armenia_MBA_Lchashen
Balkans_BA_I2163 0.193±0.045
Kura-Araxes_Kaps 0.807±0.045
chisq 14.780
tail prob 0.321267

Slumbery said...

@dragos

"everyone on here is obsessed with Dutch Beaker :)"

Sure, if mentioning them in one side remark counts as obsession... Do you have any argument against the claim that in therms of genome-wide ancestry German Unetice is similar to Beaker_Netherlands?

"It’s lineages differ to TRB & GAC, instead link to Boleraz, and some LN Tisza cultures. Far from being some Baltic culture; it’s an advanced carptho-Danubian culture which conquered mitteleuropa."

Based on the currently available samples its population is very Northern genetically, there is nothing that smells Carpathian Basin about them.
nMonte does not only calculates better fit with all Northern sources for both Polish and German Unetice, but also rejects Carpatian Basin references in the presence of Northern references (total zero).

"No western connections apart from the 35% EEF "

That is hardly a western connection in the context of the direct source and contemporary connections of Abashevo. You do not need to go very far west for that kind of ancestry. Both TRB and GAC expanded far east compared to the Unetice territory ages before Unetice and the further east expansion of CWC (already incorporating this ancestry) also happened a way before Unetice. Unless there is hard data behind it, it is an unnecessary and baseless hypothesis to assume a root anywhere west of Russia/Belarus/Ukraine behind Abashevo.

Also aren't you have confirmation bias here? You point out this: "It’s lineages differ to TRB & GAC", then proceed to ignore the same (or stronger) difference in Unetice vs. Sintashta relation.

Not to mention that I can't see how is Protoboleraz and Tisza a better uni-parental fit as Northern groups. We have a very low number of samples and not much real close matches either way.

Slumbery said...

@Dragos

Just to be clear: Unetice covered a considerable part of the former Baden territory and I have no doubt that there was both genetic and cultural heritage from that. However the currently available Unetice genetic samples tell a story of Northen origin. Those samples are from the North and from outside of the former Baden territory as far as know, but there should be still a genetic signal if the Unetice population emerged mainly from the Danube region. The genetic argument is against the Danubian origin.

Davidski said...

@All

The following samples are now in the Global25 datasheets...

Lebanon_Medieval_Euro:SI-39
Lebanon_Medieval_Euro:SI-40
Lebanon_Medieval_Euro:SI-47
Lebanon_Medieval_Mixed:SI-41
Lebanon_Medieval_Mixed:SI-53
Lebanon_Medieval_NE:SI-38
Lebanon_Medieval_NE:SI-42
Lebanon_Medieval_NE:SI-44
Lebanon_Medieval_NE:SI-45
Lebanon_Roman:QED-12
Lebanon_Roman:QED-2
Lebanon_Roman:QED-4
Lebanon_Roman:QED-7

Same links as always. Scroll down here...

https://eurogenes.blogspot.com/2019/04/downloadable-genotypes-of-worlds.html

You'll find more info about the samples above in this paper...

https://www.cell.com/ajhg/fulltext/S0002-9297(19)30111-9

I'll write up a post about them in a couple of days, after I get a chance to have a good look at them.

Matt said...

Re; Crusaders paper, disappointing that they don't test the suggestion of "we found there was an increase in Eurasian hunter-gatherer and Steppe population ancestry in Lebanon after the Bronze Age (Figure S8A)" against Turan references from Narasimhan and others.

Trying to put together a G25 based PCA that highly distinguishes for West Asia between Turan and South-Central Asian input vs Steppe input: https://imgur.com/a/IBvlKH5

Doesn't seem clear to me that Levant_N BA vs present day populations, inc. Lebanese Christian is related to Steppe or Turan :(

Seems most likely to me that this stuff is due to the Persian Empire and imperial trends from the Mediterranean west. I'm guessing probably not Mitanni. I'd hope Lebanon Roman Era samples on G25, when Davidski is able to, will be able to help with this.

(Wrote this before Davidski's post, will add on the Roman Lebanese).

Matt said...

As above with Roman Era Lebanese - https://imgur.com/a/F28AVcF

Dragos said...

@ Slumberry
I’m sure mobile males married into local groups rather than exterminating them
which accounts for the autosomal picture, although I’m not sure just how “southern” you’d expect groups from Hungary to be (it is east Central Europe, afterall).
But the lineages encountered in Unetice - I2c2, I2a1a, G2a - point an intriguing direction, as does the archaeological picture; eg “One cardinal question, however, still remains: why do we have a much more pronounced cultural break north of the Danube River at the end of the 3rd millennium BC, with new burial customs, for example in the Unětice Culture, rejecting clear gender distinctions, and with a number of new archaeological materials and technological innovations, such as, eventually, metal-casting and tin bronzes. To a certain extent the same actually applies to major parts of Hungary (Nagyrév group)..” (V Heyd)

I’m sure there was some amber trade or exogamy and alliances with groups further north ; which might account for its success

FrankN said...

I was thinking that the appearance of CWC/Sintashta ancestry in Arm_MLBA might have to do with the replacement of ANF by European pig mtDNA as reported in Larson e.a 2013.
https://academic.oup.com/mbe/article/30/4/824/1066875

However, they directly sampled a specimen from Lchasen, and it still had the original ANF Arm1T mtDNA haplotype. The first appearance of European pig mtDNA was during the early IA, and the replacement of Arm1T by European pig DNA only occured during the Hellenistic period (after ca. 500 BC). In Central Anatolia (Lidar Höyük), the replacement already commenced during the MBA, and European pigs reached domination during the early IA.
This suggests an entrance of pig herders from Anatolia, ultimately most likely of Balkans origin, into Armenia during the IA, but not yet during the MBA.

The Central Asian hypothesis looks interesting. Not so much because of the chariots: Wheeled vehicles quickly spread from between TRB in the NW to Mesopotamia in the SE via CT and Maykop, w/o obvious genetic links between these pops. However, Mitanni is generally believed to have been an IndoAryan rather than an Anatolian language, which implies a Central Asian origin.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitanni-Aryan

Note otherwise that the Kingdom of Matiene that Herodotus, Strabo and others located around Lake Van is believed to have set forth the Mitanni name.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matiene

Matt said...

Looking at the Lebanon Medieval ('Crusader Period') Samples, trying to use some appropriate PCA for intra-European differences: https://imgur.com/a/ykNgkni

SI-41 looks plausibly not actually a person from mixture in Lebanon but genetically just a Southeastern Iberian person of that time.

SI-53 may be genuinely a product of admixture in Lebanon, but I'm not sure what the most plausible parental populations are.

SI-44 who they don't finger as admixed may actually be admixed between an early Medieval / late Antiquity SE European genepool (Byzantine?) and the Lebanese Roman Period?

Grey said...

for chariot riders i'd imagine the path of least resistance might be the flattest

Matt said...

Adding some more Saudis and Yemenis to my PCA panel, and modern Hungarians to fill out the Slavic cline: https://imgur.com/a/Whwu4Eh

SI-41 definitely isn't Norwegian+Saudi mix, looks distinctively NW African and West European in affinities.

S-53 looks to me most like (closest to) a mix of 1) Italian_Medieval_Collegno_o1 and 2) Hungarian_Medieval_Szolad_o2/Slovakia_Poprad_Med, whatever they are.

I'd tentatively agree with Iosif Lazaridis who (I think in a tweet) suggested that these "admixed" samples may be both be within the range of previously existing European populations.

FrankN said...

@Matt:
Staying with pig aDNA; The a/m replacement of mid-Eastern by European mtDNA also occured in the Levante, where it is dated to ca. 900 BC. The authors speculate about a Sea People (Philistines) connection. "The arrival of the Philistines was accompanied by a sharp rise in the ratio of pig bone in their main urban sites. The exceptionally high frequencies (up to 20–25% of the faunal assemblage) stand in stark contrast to the low numbers of pigs in most contemporaneous assemblages from local Canaanite and early Israelite settlements (usually <2% of the faunal assemblage)." The origin of the Philistines is seen "in the Aegean Basin, Cyprus and/or southern Anatolia", which corresponds to the slight offset in that direction that your PCAs are showing for Roman Area Lebanese.
https://www.nature.com/articles/srep03035#f5

As to the replacement of Near Eastern by European pig mtDNA in general: The earliest evidence of this process comes from TRB N (but note that e.g. the Paris Basin or the Baltic States haven't yet been sampled in this respect). GAC is the first Central European culture to prefer pigs over cattle, and as thus a plausible candidate for that replacement to have become fixed. In the Carpathian basin, the replacement occured from around 2,000 BC on (Wietenberg Culture).
https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/full/10.1098/rstb.2013.0616

@Dragos: Amber trade was certainly an issue. However, amber trade to the Mediterranean seems to in earnest only have picked up during the MBA (Mycene, Thutmosis etc.), when Unetice had already become history.
Unetice's main economic base seems to have been channeling Cornish tin via Elbe and Danube towards the Troad and beyond. Unetice was the Central European pioneer in producing Tin Bronzes, at a time when Iberians still preferred Arsenic Bronze. I think it is more than just a coincidence that Unetice collapsed after the Thera eruption/ tsunami had devastated Minoan Crete, and with it East Mediterranean trade networks.

epoch said...

@Matt

"Seems most likely to me that this stuff is due to the Persian Empire and imperial trends from the Mediterranean west. I'm guessing probably not Mitanni."

From what I read Persians only settled in Asia Minor but that could just be settlement that drew attention. There are also the Neo-Hittite states bordering Lebanon that were overrun by Assyrians roughly 850-800 BC.

Slumbery said...

@Dragos

"...I’m not sure just how “southern” you’d expect groups from Hungary to be (it is east Central Europe, afterall)."

In this context by southern I mean the Carpathian Basin and Danube region and by northern the region between the Carpathian-Sudete mountains and the Baltic Sea. The Carpathian Basin had some "communication" with the Balkan that effected its genetic make-up, but the exact strength of of this effect at the relevant time is not crucial for my argument. It was a somewhat different population than the northern regions and nMontes definitely prefers the latter for Unetice.

I show you what I mean. Note that I did a lot more test run than this, even with super simple two way models and the fit difference always favored north.

"sample": "Germany_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.1316,
"CWC_Germany": 80.83,
"Poland_GAC": 19.17,
"Baden_LCA": 0,

"sample": "Poland_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.6843,
"CWC_Germany": 84.17,
"Poland_GAC": 15.83,
"Baden_LCA": 0,

"sample": "Germany_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.1316,
"CWC_Germany": 80.83,
"Poland_GAC": 19.17,
"Protoboleraz_LCA": 0,

"sample": "Poland_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.6843,
"CWC_Germany": 84.17,
"Poland_GAC": 15.83,
"Protoboleraz_LCA": 0,

At least German and Polish Unetice seems to be completely local in the sense that virtually their entire ancestry is from the "northern" region as defined above. At any rate their "southern" ancestry is nowhere near the 50% that is implied by your Baden males + local females scenario.

Now, Beaker Hungary scores some ancestry, but at this point we have a problem. Not only the YDNA of Beaker Hungary do not fit you theory at all, but they have pretty obvious North-Western ancestry that is very similar to Unetice. So the flow goes to the other way (also, over-fitting:)

"sample": "Germany_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.0135,
"CWC_Germany": 56.67,
"Beaker_Hungary": 28.33,
"Poland_GAC": 15,

"sample": "Poland_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.5431,
"CWC_Germany": 58.33,
"Beaker_Hungary": 29.17,
"Poland_GAC": 12.5,

Bavarian beakers produce an even better fit and they are pretty far from the Carpathian Basin and outside of the Baden territory.

"sample": "Germany_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 0.8973,
"Beaker_Bavaria": 48.33,
"CWC_Germany": 43.33,
"Poland_GAC": 8.33,

Finally just for fun with shady Netherlanden Beakers.

"sample": "Germany_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.0731,
"Beaker_The_Netherlands": 93.33,
"Poland_GAC": 6.67,

"sample": "Germany_Unetice:Average",
"fit": 1.0403,
"Beaker_The_Netherlands": 95,
"Baden_LCA": 5,

So some extra farmer ancestry is welcomed, maybe even transmitted from the south-east by Baden, but not a big impact. In genome-wide terms Unetice from modern day Germany is very close to their western neighbors.

"But the lineages encountered in Unetice - I2c2, I2a1a, G2a - point an intriguing direction,..."

These lineages are not really specific. I2c2 was in Mesolithic Sweden, so it have a long presence in the North, G2a is also already all over the map in the Neolithic, including LBK from Germany.


I would not speculate about the reason behind this perceived cultural transition. Might as well be cultural effect from Baden et. al.

Matt said...

Minimum Euclidean Distances for other samples in the G25 set for the Lebanese Crusader/Medieval "mixed" and "European": https://imgur.com/a/OGANZaD

* SI-41 is very definitely matching with 400-1600 CE Southeast Iberians, and this is not just an artefact of the populations I selected for PCA.

* SI-53 is a pretty close match to Southern Italians, as would be expected from their PCA. (It looks like other people with this genetic composition are just not well represented in the adna panel of largely Roman-Medieval samples I used for the PCA).

* SI-39 and SI-47 are essentially NW European (English, German, Langobard, Viking, Scottish), seem slightly less northern than Norwegians.

* SI-40 is essentially Iberian / Southern French.

@epoch, you may be right. At the end of the day, I think this is going to be a composite of subtle migration over time from the north, east and west I think, not a single pulse of Steppe_MLBA / Sarmatian like people or something like this.

Ric Hern said...

An expansion from Pomerania ?

Ric Hern said...

Is that another indicator of R1bs migration route towards the West ? Maybe all along the border of Pomerania...

capra internetensis said...

Trying out Lchashen-Mestamor in G25:

In a distal model no East or South Asian appears, but elevated ANE and Levantine compared to Kura-Araxes:
33% Boncuklu N, 32% CHG, 15% Abdul Hosein N, 11% Afantova Gora 3, 9% Natufian, 0% Shahr-i-Sokhta BA3 or Irula, 0% Shamanka EN or Mongola - distance 3.1748%

The Kura-Araxes populations vary: Velikent has more ANE and less Levantine than others, Talin is a little more Anatolian. Kaps and Kalavan seem almost identical in basic composition, but Kalavan is closer to everyone and they work differently, I don't know why.

89% Kalavan, 11% AG3 - distance 2.6795%; or 80% Kalavan, 20% Sintashta - distance 2.9937%
75% Kaps, 25% Sintashta - distance 3.4530%; or 88% Kaps, 12% AG3 - distance 3.8021%
Do they work differently in qpAdm?

Three-way models with Kura-Araxes and Lebanon BA:
59% Kalavan, 22% Sidon BA, 19% Steppe Maykop - distance 1.6836%
69% Kalavan, 18% Sidon BA, 13% AfanotovaGora3 - distance 1.6977%
69% Kalavan, 17% Sidon BA, 14% Sintashta Outlier 3 - distance 1.7101%
70% Kalavan, 18% Sidon BA, 13% West Siberia N - distance 1.7360%
71% Kalavan, 16% Sidon BA, 13% Botai - distance 1.9056%
57% Kalavan, 22% Yamnaya Samara, 21% Sidon BA - distance 2.2929%
72% Kalavan, 20% Sintashta, 7% Sidon BA - distance 2.8577%

51% Kaps, 27% Sidon BA, 22% Steppe Maykop - distance 2.1646%
63% Kaps, 21% Sidon BA, 16% Sintashta Outlier 3 - distance 2.3448%
51% Kaps, 25% Yamnaya Samara, 24% Sidon BA - distance 2.3749%
63% Kaps, 22% Sidon BA, 15% WS N - distance 2.4353%
65% Kaps, 20% Sidon BA, 15% Botai - distance 2.6320%
63% Kaps, 23% Sidon BA, 14% AG3 - distance 2.6370%
66% Kaps, 25% Sintashta, 10% Sidon BA - distance 3.2236%

So yeah, I don't know. At least in G25 the variation in Kura-Araxes may swamp the differences in possible sources of Steppe/ANE.

VAsistha said...

"
"Is it possible the Indo-Aryan elite in Mitanni came straight from Eurasian Steppe not India? "

I actually never heard it suggested that they had gotten there from India. If there was a Sintashta-like incursion into Armenia, then it may have to do with that, I'm thinking(tentatively)?"

Yes why even connect the only 2 regions where you find the same Gods mentioned? lol

Simon_W said...

Davidski said: "As for the Armenian language, for now I'm mainly going to go with the academic consensus on this and say that it arrived in Transcaucasia from the Balkans during the Iron Age or a little bit earlier."

Seems correct to me. This is a Global25/nMonte model for my Polish girlfriend's daughter, whose Turkish father is from the western fringe of the Armenian plateau:


distance%=1.3249


Mother_Polish, 53.5
Hasanlu_IA:F38, 41
Balkans_BA, 2.8
Kazakhstan_Turk:DA89, 2.7
Anatolia_MLBA, 0
Kazakhstan_Turk:DA228, 0
Kyrgyzstan_Turk:DA68, 0
Hajji_Firuz_IA, 0
Armenia_IA_Lchashen_Metsamor, 0
Armenia_MLBA, 0
Balkans_IA, 0

So almost as much Turkish as Balkans_BA, and I did't even manage to reduce her mother's influence to the correct 50%... But predominantly they're local, probably Hurrian-related.

Samuel Andrews said...

So those crusaders come from all over western Europe. Saxony or Frank (I'm guessing), Italy, Spain, Aquataine.

Leron said...

Phoenicians were the first Levant people to traffic between Europe and the Near East on a regular basis. Nothing surprising about their descendants having picked up some extra European genetics compared to Assyrians and Amorites.

While the northern part of Transcaucasia had interactions with cis-Caucasus ones, I doubt they were contributing IE into the region. The Caucasus traps ancient languages, so there might have existed other pre-IE languages with steppe component.


FrankN said...

Sam: I doubt about Saxony - when looking for fortune in heathen lands, they rather went north-east, to the German Order in East Prussia. But Godfroy of Bouillon certainly attests for a Belgian (Wallonian) element among the Crusaders...

Dragos said...

Slumberry

''These lineages are not really specific. I2c2 was in Mesolithic Sweden, so it have a long presence in the North, G2a is also already all over the map in the Neolithic, including LBK from Germany. ''

Yes but we need to look at the specific time frame. There is no I2c2 in preceding groups in Poland is there ? None in TRB none in GAC, nor any in Swedish TRB.
Where is the G2a in TRB and GAC or preceding CWC ?

''I would not speculate about the reason behind this perceived cultural transition. Might as well be cultural effect from Baden et. al. ''

No need for speculation if one understands the data and solicits archaeological opinion instead of bombasting their own pet theories and overfitted nMonte models .
Btw Baden had ended 400 years prior Unetice and the Hungarian groups which influenced it .
Try getting at least some basics right, Mr MPI

Leron said...

FrankN: You brought up European pigs entering Anatolia during the MLBA. This coincides exactly with the emergence of the Kaska in Hittite records, who were seen as alien “pig herders” in contrast to Hittites who found pigs unclean. The Kaska, along with the Phrygians/Mushki were likely the source of Balkan genes/languages. The old Greeks referred to *Askanius as kindred to the Phrygians, and the name maybe be an Ionic interpretation of (K)aska. These tribes having the -skV suffix in common. The Armenians call themselves Hayk but originally it would be *Poti-k, very reminiscent of the name the Persians gave to the former Hittite lands, Kat-Patuka/Cappadocia.

Dragos said...

So it’s confirmed that western R1b in Near east is crusader origin rather than Galatians

Bob Floy said...

@VAsistha

I can see that you have a very advanced understanding of all this.

FrankN said...

Leron: Interesting addition. Seemingly, (pig) aDNA and historic sources seem to match in this case.

I would caution, however, from overinterpreting the Mushki ethnonym in this context. They may have been identical, or have been mistaken to the Moshoi that Herodotus located on the SW coast of the Black Sea - according to Hecataeus of Miletus "Colchians" (Kartvelians?).

From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mushki
"Strabo locates the Moschoi in two places. The first location is somewhere in modern Abkhazia (Georgia) on the eastern shore of the Black Sea, in agreement with Stephan of Byzantium quoting Hellanicus. The second location Moschice (Moschikê) [..] was divided between the Colchians, Armenians, and Iberians (cf. Mela, III. 5.4; Pliny VI.4.). These latter Moschoi were obviously the Georgian Meskhi or Mesx’i (where Greek χ, chi, is Georgian ხ, x)."
The latter have a/o lent their name to the S. Georgian region of Samtskhe ("land of Meskhi"), the ancient Georgian capital Mtskheta, and possibly also various places called "Meshoko" in the N. Caucasus.

As such, ancient Mushki may have been either Kartvelians, or (proto-)Armenians, or a cohabitation of both.

Romulus said...

Is the academic ancient DNA agenda to test literally every single population in existence BUT the earliest Romans and Greeks? Come on. Nobody cares about Crusaders. Test the bones in the tomb of Abraham and I'll care.

Davidski said...

@capra internetensis

The Kura-Araxes populations vary: Velikent has more ANE and less Levantine than others, Talin is a little more Anatolian. Kaps and Kalavan seem almost identical in basic composition, but Kalavan is closer to everyone and they work differently, I don't know why.

Kura-Araxes_Kalavan is dated to around 500 years later than Kura-Araxes_Kaps, and has some sort of steppe ancestry, which is difficult to model but it's almost certainly there. See here...

R-V1636: Eneolithic steppe > Kura-Araxes?

This might account for the subtle difference that you're seeing between the two sample sets, and it's why I separate them in my analyses.

I suspect that Kura-Araxes_Kaps will turn out very similar to Neolithic samples from Armenia, including those associated with the mythical Shulaveri-Shomu culture.

Leron said...

FrankN: Name confusion isn't such a rare occurrence. It happened with Syrian and Assyrian, where Greeks would conflate the name even though they were originally meant for clearly distinct people and regions. The term Asian was also passed around, starting from Asia Minor now all the way to the far east.
In the cuneiform sources the reference to the Mushki always related to events in central Anatolia and Phrygia: Mita of Mushku (Phrygian Midas), the Kaska and Mushki traversing the Hittite areas into Assyria, and the Neo-Hittite mention of the state of Muska as one of the prominent kingdoms of the time.

The Kartvelian Moschi appear to be a relatively unimportant Colchian tribe that only get counted among the many others. By the time the Greeks learn about them the former Mushki/Phrygians were always doubly absorbed by the Lydians and then the Persians.

Davidski said...

@Dragos & Slumbery

As far as I can see, there are three Proto-Unetice samples in the ancient DNA record. Two from Czechia and one from Poland. All belong to Y-haplogroup R.

Czech_Protounetice_EBA I5037

Czech_Protounetice_EBA I5042

Poland_Corded_Ware_Proto_Unetice RISE431

See here...

https://reichdata.hms.harvard.edu/pub/datasets/amh_repo/curated_releases/V37/V37.2/SHARE/public.dir/v37.2.1240K.clean4.anno

Dragos said...

Davidski

Im not sure why Reich has classified I5037 as proto-Unetice, indeed what the heck proto-Unetice is even meant to be. Sounds like a made up culture.

I5037 - originally from Price 2004. Bell Beaker
I5042 - same
RISE 431 - Corded_Ware_Proto_Unetice_Poland.

The actual Unetice samples have so far come back I2c, I2a1, G2a. Of course, as I said, there will be R1 and other lineages, because Unetice was a different culture, a new phase of European society, instead of primitive tribal systems; and that system came from the southeast. No doubt. See Fig 1. https://www.academia.edu/1347170/Bruszczewo_und_Leki_Male_Ein_fr%C3%BChbronzezeitliches_Machtzentrum_in_Gro%C3%9Fpolen

HAUMAVARGĀ said...

Looks like the father is Kurdish.

Davidski said...

@Dragos

Im not sure why Reich has classified I5037 as proto-Unetice, indeed what the heck proto-Unetice is even meant to be. Sounds like a made up culture.

I don't think this was done on a whim. The classification was probably made by collaborating archeologists from that part of Europe.

Cpk said...

How is it that there is steppe-like ancestry in Armenia and Northern Iran but nothing in Eastern Anatolia? (Arslantepe etc.)

Davidski said...

@Dragos

E-mail the relevant people and complain to them...

We would be grateful if users of this dataset could alert us to any errors they detect and help us to fill in missing data. This could include: (1) errors or missing information for location, latitude, longitude, archaeological context, date, and group label, (2) concerns about Y chromosome or mitochondrial DNA haplogroup determinations, and (3) evidence for other problems in the data or annotations for individuals. Please write to Swapan 'Shop' Mallick and David Reich with any suggestions. We would also be grateful if members of the community could suggest additional content that would be helpful to add to this page to make it maximally useful. Finally, please let us know if there is any ancient DNA data we should be including that we have missed.

https://reich.hms.harvard.edu/downloadable-genotypes-worlds-published-ancient-dna-data

Matt said...

On the Crusaders paper, quick discussion on how they tested their models using qpAdm and f3 stats:

For qpAdm, they use Ust’-Ishim, Kostenki 14, MA1, Onge, Papuans, Chukchi, Karitiana, Eastern hunter-gatherers (EHG), WHG, Natufians, Caucasus hunter-gatherers, Neolithic Iranians, Neolithic Anatolians, and Neolithic Levantines. Without much explanation they use nothing African, and in particular do not use the Iberomaurasians.

This seems like a pretty major oversight even for gross scale models, given that G25 shows SI-41 to be essentially like a 400-1600 SE Iberian (and his DF27 lineage, which must have existed to some degree in SE Iberia, agrees with this).

I'm not sure why this would be the case, as it should be immediately obvious that something North African is going down dropping this sample even into a "world" PCA.

On f3 admixture stats, their rationale for SI-53 being admixed in the Crusader states is as follows:

Individual SI-53 clustered on the PCA with Ashkenazi Jews, Sicilians, and Southern Italians and therefore we wanted to test whether SI-53 could have descended directly from one of these populations who were previously reported to be admixed, with the implication that admixture in SI-53 could then have occurred before the Crusaders’ time and in Europe instead of in the Near East. However, our results (Table S6) show that the Europeans have in general a distinct admixture pattern from the one observed in SI-53; among the populations tested, Ashkenazi Jews’ Near Eastern ancestry is mostly related to Near Eastern Jews, Sicilians’ European ancestry is related to Italians, and Southern Italians have Northern Italians as top sources of their European ancestry.

Looking at Table S6, essentially they are arguing that the best fit for SI-53 is Croatian / Norwegian / Romanian with Lebanon_MP, while for Sicilian or Southern Itaian it is Italian North / Spanish with Jew_Turkish / Lebanon_MP, while Ashkenazi Jew is Hungarian / English / Turkish with Jew_Turkish.

I find this pretty unconvincing evidence, since their qpAdm has no specific sensitivity to present day European / West Asian differences through its outgroups, and it's also likely that South Italy today is only a restricted representative of more widely distributed admixed post-Roman East Mediterranean populations.

Samuel Andrews said...

@Romulus,
"Is the academic ancient DNA agenda to test literally every single population in existence BUT the earliest Romans and Greeks? Come on. Nobody cares about Crusaders. Test the bones in the tomb of Abraham and I'll care."

Yes!

Matt said...

Proto-Unetice presumably as date and location match "Moucha 1963" definition of "Proto-Únětice"
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unetice_culture) - "The first unified chronological system (relative chronology) based on a typology of ceramics and metal artefacts for the Únětice culture in Bohemia was introduced by Moucha in 1963".

(Turns out Wikipedia's a pretty great basic reference to get pretty basic information from, for people who have pretty basic knowledge).

https://eprint.ncl.ac.uk/file_store/production/246907/EB2BFD9F-FB54-4234-99D2-F26C88342D3A.pdf - Contact Person - Miroslav Dobeš, Petr Velemínský: Site: Moravská Nová Ves - "Czech EBA" - "I5037/RISE579, F0579, gr. 27: 2300–1900 BCE"

A 2010 paper by Jan Kolar placing this site as "Proto-Únětice" is https://www.academia.edu/1427849/Secondary_Mortuary_Practices_During_the_Late_Eneolithic_in_Moravia_Czech_Republic_State_of_Knowledge_History_Of_Research_Terminology_and_Interpretations, citing Stuchlík -Stuchlíková 1996.

(I don't care about this topic personally, the above is just for reference).

Dragos said...

From Matt’s reference

“cultural component, but some authors consider it contemporaneousness with Bell Beaker and Corded Ware (Peška 2009, 253-260), and it is also often groundlessly dated as late to Early Bronze Age. “

It’s basically a non entity- just late CWC. Unetice proper is a dofferemt entire

Aram said...

Simon W

I don't think any pure Armenian would score such high level of Hasanlu IA.

Aram said...

FrankN

Anthropological studies showed that brachycephalic type in the teritory of modern Armenia became prevalant only in early medieval period. Assuming that brachycephality correlates with higher ANF we can conjecture that even in the period of late Arshacids Armenians in the modern Armenia were different from the moderns. Probably had higher CHG than the moderns. So what do will tell us this?

HAUMAVARGĀ said...

Agreed. On the other hand, Kurds score very high levels of Hasanlu_IA.

FrankN said...

Aram: "what will tell us this?"

Don't know. More samples needed (ideally accompanied by an inscribed tombstone)?

What is your conclusion?

EurDNA said...

@ FrankN

''Unetice's main economic base seems to have been channeling Cornish tin via Elbe and Danube towards the Troad and beyond. Unetice was the Central European pioneer in producing Tin Bronzes, at a time when Iberians still preferred Arsenic Bronze. I think it is more than just a coincidence that Unetice collapsed after the Thera eruption/ tsunami had devastated Minoan Crete, and with it East Mediterranean trade networks.''

A good point, however we should check what other economic sustained its population. We should point out its beginnings seem diverse, perhaps incorporating various segmentary societies (GAC, late TRB, CWC, BB) into a more complex system stretching from Britain to southeast Europe, with its core in Central Europe. Apart from some sub-zones, most other areas beyond its core continued their 'Late Neolithic'' trajectories.
Unetice must have served as a connector of regions. With its ''collapse'' c. 1600 BC emerges local regional groups, incl Nordic Bronze Age & Elp Culture. Funnily 1600 BC enough more or less matches the timing og El Argar collapse in Iberia, with the subsequent rise of Cogotas culture as the pre-eminent unit in Iberia. Both Unetice & El Argar draw paralles (very heriarchical, coercive societies) but the fabric of their formation nevertheless different.
Unetice seems

Santosh Rajan said...

Coming back to the subject of this article, it looks like there must be a change in the indo iranian language family tree.
The Sintashta must have spoken a proto rigvedic language rather than proto indo iranian. They spread this language along with their metallurgy and chariots, from eastern anotolia to central asia going down both sides of the caspian sea. On the central asian side proto rigvedic split into rigvedic sanskrit and avestan. Which then further split into indo aryan and iranian languages respectively.
I agree this is speculative, but warrants a relook at the indo iranian family tree.

Bob Floy said...

@Santosh

I think you may be onto something.

Dragos said...

@ Slumberry

''Also aren't you have confirmation bias here? You point out this: "It’s lineages differ to TRB & GAC", then proceed to ignore the same (or stronger) difference in Unetice vs. Sintashta relation.''

I'm sure we understand that Sintashta R1a-Z93 does not derive from I2c.
If you read carfeully i suggested - ''I’m looking toward MDC; which falls into the european Bronze Age orbit ''
Nevertheless, perform a PCA (if you can) of Sintashta and see where it plots.

BTW http://eurogenes.blogspot.com/2018/04/the-mystery-of-sintashta-people.html

Srtmil said...

A little of topic but who is closer genetically to yamnaya ? Slavs , finns maybe tajiks?
Thanks for creating this blog is really helpfull and informative

Samuel Andrews said...

@Srtmil,

Here's distribution of Yamnaya ancestry in west Eurasia....
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1LPWAEC3dbAEDu8aBAAcxIOa5CQjuflt0f0cvhCpZ_ME/edit#gid=1497568895

Tajik aren't included. They are about 40-50% Sintashta/Andronovo. Sintashta was 62-64% Yamnaya which makes Tajik about 30% Yamnaya. Kalash, Pathan have next highest amount of Sintashta ancestry in Asia. They have 30-40% Sintashta (so 20s% Yamnaya).

Finnish probably have a little less Yamnaya than other northern Europeans. I estimate 35-40% for them.

EurDNA said...

@ Dragos; Slumberry


It's true that we have too few data points from central European Bronze Age to discern exact connections with male uniparentals; however it is worth highlighting that during developed Unetice period, we see the predominant lineages to be those previously missing in preceding BB (P312) or Corded Ware (Z645). This requires an explanation which goes beyond a so-called "MNE bounceback'', just as it was demonstrated that there's a lot more complexity & meaning to the ''WHG bounceback'' than had previously been offered. The origin of Unetice to the Danube-bend/ Carpathian region has long been recognised, however ultimately what this all means might have to wait until further data is gathered from central & southeastern Europe, and I suspect that Dragos might be overshooting the mark in suggesting a 'conquest of central Europe'.

As for Sintastha being mentioned, it awoke an equiry as to how it shapes in light of the new Catacomb data. A simple plot here (http://i64.tinypic.com/359h9bd.jpg)
Quite surprisingly, Sintashta is right amongst the central European cluster, moreso than early CWC, even Catacomb and some German_CWC. Quite interesting ...

Davidski said...

Hopefully Dragos sobered up a bit since Easter Sunday.

Aram said...

I was out in holidays.
Some extra notes.

+ One of Armenia_MLBA samples looks like an outlier (Rise413 - 1900 - 1600BC ). The one that is shifted to west. It plots on the cloud of modern Armenians. It is from MBA period that comes after Kura-Araxes so chances are quite high that he represents a K-A ancestry typical to western parts of historic Armenia ( Eastern Anatolia ).

+ I2c is practically inexistant among Northern Caucasians. How he landed in South Caucasus is still not clear but it's presence in ancient Armenia especially in elite burial is what one would expect from this haplotype. It is even possible that I2c with some other haplotypes used coastal hoping in Black Sea to land directly in North East Anatolia before moving to South Caucasus.

+ Lchashen-Metsamor culture is very different from the Urartian culture that appeared in modern Armenia during Middle Iron Age. When I say very different I wanted to say different in every aspect. Pottery, architecture, metallic objects, burials.. Lchashenians were using Cyclopean masonry to build their forts. Similar to Myceneans. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclopean_masonry) while Urarteans were polishing stones before using them.
Lchashenians were the most important enemy of Urarteans after Assyrians. Numerous burning layers are found in Lchashenian sites after the arrival of Urartean army.


Aram said...

FrankN

Well yes we need more samples. But expecting inscriptions on tombstones is not realistic. What is more needed is the accurate archaeological context of samples.
So how You would define a proto-Armenian pottery? After all this kind of things are needed to test a theory. Because autosomal similarity will not tell much about ethnicity. As far I know some Urartean samples will plot much closer to modern Armenians than Lchashenians. Would this mean that they were the true IE speakers rather than those ones.

Maybe You know Karin Bartl. She is from Berlin, Germany. She discuss this issues in her paper named "Eastern Anatolia in Iron Age". Please find a time to read it.

Dragos said...

@ EuDNA

That’s fine; Hungary is considered central Europe anyhow; but we can term it a “take over”
As for everything else; you seem to confirm what I outlined

@ Davidski
I don’t really drink , but as they say - in vino Veritas
Twoje zdrowie

Srtmil said...

Thanks

Halfalp said...

Did you see in " http://open-genomes.org/analysis/Eurasian_Steppe_Y-DNA_mtDNA_Gedmatch.html?fbclid=IwAR18vO6fqjuXL9IxCT9nZrfhc_wkRby7dy2mMy8EuEuyKdwJjPxknheyqi4 ".

One Lchashen Metsamor sample is y-dna I2!!!