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Friday, May 3, 2019

Inferring the linguistic affinity of long dead and non-literate peoples: a multidisciplinary approach


Ancient DNA has treated us to many surprises in recent years. But it has also uncannily corroborated some well established hypotheses that were formulated decades ago from historical linguistics and archeological data. One such hypothesis is that the population associated with the Late Neolithic Corded Ware culture (CWC), and its myriad offshoots, spoke early Indo-European languages and spread them across much of Europe and into the Indian subcontinent.

Below is a series of figures in which I explain why the CWC and its likely close relative, the Sintashta culture, are widely regarded as early Indo-European-speaking cultures, even though their languages aren't attested. To view the images at their maximum size, right click on the thumbs and choose "open link in a new tab".




It's a damn shame that we still don't know where the modern domesticated horse lineage ultimately came from. I'm pretty sure that it came from the Pontic-Caspian steppe, but I was hoping this would be confirmed in the latest paper on horse genomics published today at Current Biology: Tracking Five Millennia of Horse Management with Extensive Ancient Genome Time Series. Nope, the topic wasn't even covered, and no wonder, because the sampling strategy in the paper didn't allow it to be. What we desperately need are samples associated with such archeological cultures as Khvalynsk, Repin, Sredny Stog and Yamnaya. Maybe next time, eh?

See also...

77 comments:

Davidski said...

If anyone's actually buying Carlos' BS, keep in mind that all horses with significant native Iberian ancestry (IBE), like Duk2, were totally replaced in Europe by Sintashta-related horses.

La Tene (Celtic), Gallic, Roman, Pictish and Viking horses were all Sintashta-related horses with no Iberian ancestry!

zardos said...

Probably the idea of horse breeding is more important than the breeds in use?
People which were active breeders of horses with some basic knowledge of inherited traits might very well have preferred a new, foreign breeding before their own horses.
I mean you cant, with any certainty, link horse and human lineages with any certainty.
Even who bred first might not be decisive, if the second in the row used the animals more effectively.

Davidski said...

The point though is that all of the likely and attested Indo-European groups from all over the place have exactly the same horse.

I guess it's possible that this certain breed became popular and someone made a killing from breeding and exporting it, but come on, we're talking about the Bronze Age here, or even earlier.

The most parsimonious explanation is that, just like the Indo-European horse cult, this breed of horse expanded with different Indo-European groups from the Indo-European homeland.

Ric Hern said...

This is all good and well. Just don't forget about Hittite...and especially don't forget about R1b...I have no problem with R1a spreading some of the Indo-European branches and being part of the initial formation of Proto-Indo-European, but not exclusively.

Vinitharya said...

I don't know Carlos is starting to make sense with his Slavic origin theory, probably specifically because I see the Slavic expansion through the prism of my haplogroup, R1a-M458-L1029-YP445, MRCA around 650 AD, whose modern descendants are predominantly German (I imagine the Wendish warrior MRCA looking over the modern members of the clade and wondering 'Why are all my descendants 𝘕𝘦𝘮𝘤𝘺?') in that the "Slavic from the West" (in my theories Southeastern Poland) makes much more sense when viewing the modern distribution of the clade than the Pripet Marshes theory. (I had become very interested in my y-haplogroup because I had knew very little of my paternal grandfather; he and my grandmother divorced when my dad and uncles were young and my Nana remarried a first generation Polish-American and then had her sons take his name when they moved across the country, so I have great fondness for the Polish people, as my parents would have never met without one of them). As for the horse part, that was the first thing I mentioned to my father when I found out we were R1a, as he's a farm animal lover. Horses are skittish animals, and it must have taken great patience and acumen to domesticate them. I don't know how anyone could separate the horse domestication and Sredny Stog, but stranger theories are out there.

music lover said...

I think that as with Bell Beakers the term Corded Ware material culture is a misnomer as far as the genetics are concerned. There are Corded Ware samples that have no Steppe ancestry, some that appear to be homogenous with Yamnaya and later samples which are a mix of European farmers (who are themselves at least in Eastern Europe almost entirely derived recently from Anatolian farmers). However the origins of whether this mixture happens directly on the Steppe, (Samara is where we have the earliest radio-carbon dated sample, with an R1a Y chromosome as well as the correct ratio of autosomal ancestry) or happens elsewhere is not certain. Therefore it is unclear if the Sintashta are an offshoot of the corded ware or if there was a movement of farmer ancestry into the Steppe first which was already an ongoing process in which the Yamnaya are themselves a product of (compare Khvalynsk vs Yamnaya), and thereafter there was movement into Eastern Europe.

old europe said...


music lover

The making of the steppe went like this ( it is a rough summary)

1)R1a M417 belongs to a culture ( Skelya or Sredni Stog ) that is at least 1000 years older than Yamnaia. Skeyla (or SS) is born out of a strong cultural and demic influence from the balkano-carpathian region ( see Kotova on academia.eu). Of course the R1a sample is a local one and doesn't come from the west. Anthony talked already in 1986 that a group of steppe clans were likely incorporated in the higher ranks of Cucuteni Tripolye. The discovery of sample I6561 seems to confirm this theory ( steppe people with an overwhelmingly farmer culture). Corded ware stems out of this culture only with a little bit of exogamy with Repin that lowered the EEF signal

2) This mixed population ( roughly 50% EEF 50% Steppe eneolithic) then in the first half of the 4th millennium started to expand eastward ( to the Volga) to the south ( northern caucasus) and to the west (Suvorovo) . for all this read Rassamakin academia.eu. Genetic clearly confirms this because the Ukraine eneolithic genetic signal reaches both the Volga ( that is why Yamnaia Samara has circa 18% EEF ) and Afanasievo has ukraine eneolithic too ( 36%). Cultural package of Yamanaia is basically Sredni Stog ( aka Skelya) derived. Repin, the antecedent of Yamnaia is a post SS developement.

3) so to sum up: the real player in the development of the famous steppe culture ( and steppe pastoralism ) was not the Volga but the contact zone between Cucuteni and Dneper Donets native people If you consider that PIE has an agricoltural vocabulary and that east of the Dneper we have no agricolture till 2000 BC it is clear that if we have to remain in the steppe theory ( the dogma par excellence!) the western steppe makes more sense than the Volga-Caspian alternative.
Waiting eagerly for the confirmation of Telegin's thesis of Dereivka ( SS) as the "domestication" homeland. Horse scepters as I have already said were present in the western steppe since Suvorovo- Novodanilovka.
Novodanilovka of course is just an elite group inside the Skelya (SS) culture.

Mouthful said...

@old europe

"Corded ware stems out of this culture only with a little bit of exogamy with Repin that lowered the EEF signal"

We have early Corded Ware samples from Baltic with no EEF.

bellbeakerblogger said...

Mules in La Tene France and throughout the Medieval Period. That's big news. I'm surprised they didn't include Cardoso's Chalcolithic African Ass.

Also this:


"Therefore, IBE [Iberian] or horses closely related to IBE, contributed ancestry to animals found at an Early Bronze Age trade center in Hungary from the late 3rd mill. BCE. This could indicate that there was long-distance exchange of horses during the Bell Beaker phenomenon"

I agree that this crossing of horses around Csepel Island has to be deliberate.

Gaska said...

@ Davidski- "If anyone's actually buying Carlos' BS, keep in mind that all horses with significant native Iberian ancestry (IBE), like Duk2, were totally replaced in Europe by Sintashta-related horses"

It's true that Carlos's theories have long been absurd and even comical, but saying what you're saying does not help much to clarify the debate about the domestication of the horse

A Fages- "The maximum of such estimate was found in the Hungarian Dunaujvaros Duk2-4077 specimen (11.7%–12.2%), consistent with its TreeMix clustering with IBE when allowing for one migration edge. This specimen was previously suggested to share ancestry with a yet-unidentified population (Gaunitz et al., 2018). Calculation of f4-statistics indicates that this population is not related to E. lenensis but to IBE. Therefore, IBE or horses closely related to IBE, contributed ancestry to animals found at an Early Bronze Age trade center in Hungary from the late 3rd mill. BCE. This could indicate that there was long-distance exchange of horses during the Bell Beaker phenomenon (Olalde et al., 2018). The fG minimal boundary for the IBE contribution into an Iron Age Spanish horse (ElsVilars-UE4618-2672) was still important (9.6%–10.1%), suggesting that an IBE genetic influence persisted in Iberia until at least the 7th century BCE in a domestic contex"

Everyone can understand what these words mean;

1-The Hungarian horses of the Bb culture didn't come from the steppes but from Iberia (at least in part), which is a demonstration more of the direction of the chalcolithic migrations (west-east) and not vice-versa.

2-In Spain that IBE ancestry was maintained at least until the Iron Age (10%), and as Jaime Lira demonstrated two years ago, the Mitochondrial C haplogroup of Lusitanian and Spanish horses (that is documented in Iberia since the Neolithic) has been maintained until the 21st century (although it may also be that geneticists who have signed this work think that the current Spanish horses are not DOM2). That lineage C was domesticated in situ, and is part of the genetic pool of DOM2.

Totally replaced in Europe by Sintashta related horses ????????????- You may think that Spain is not in Europe.

3- Gaunitz (2.018)- "All domestic horses dated from ~4,000 ya to present only show ~2.7% of Botai-related ancestry"

Fages says that the contribution of Iberian horses in Hungary is 12% and in horses of Iron Age-Iberia (10%), while Botai's contribution in Iberia is ZERO, and yet his conclusion is that Iberian horses have not contributed to the domestication of horses due to their low percentage in DOM2. It is simply amazing. Of course, everything is open regarding the domestication of the horse, but this paper is further evidence that it could have been produced in several places and different times independently, and Iberia was certainly one of those places. The steppes as everything related to that matter, is simple speculation.

Ario said...

@ Old Europe

where's your picture from? It reminds me of these ritual vessels from the Catacomb culture:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catacomb_culture#/media/File:Moscow_State_Historical_Museum_-_IMG_3473.JPG

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catacomb_culture#/media/File:Vessels_and_pins_Catacomb_GIM.jpg

Ric Hern said...

So where did the Sintashta horses come from initially ? Which inbetween cultures contributed to the eventual formation of Sintashta ? How does the migration route from the West look like ?

Romulus said...

is it fair to call a people who had no written language illiterate?🤔

Davidski said...

@music lover

You're probably confused because the earliest instance of R1a-M417 is in a Sredny Stog II sample on the North Pontic steppe, which is very similar to the most typical Corded Ware and Sintashta samples.

Look at this PCA very carefully.

LINK

There are no samples like this in the Samara area until the Poltavka outlier, which is clearly a migrant from the west.

Read this and try your best to understand it.

The Poltavka outlier

Bob Floy said...

@music lover

"There are Corded Ware samples that have no Steppe ancestry"

Are you sure about that? Because I don't think that's true.

Dragos said...

Old Europe
I think the Sherrats got IE right

Davidski said...

@Bob Floy

There is one Corded Ware sample with no steppe ancestry, and there will probably be more. But this doesn't support anything that music lover claimed.

All it shows is that there was a migration of the Proto-Corded Ware population from the steppe deep into Europe, and then some acculturation in Central Europe, leading to a more mixed gene pool. And this is probably where Sintashta came from. See here...

Awesome substructure within Czech Corded Ware

Bob Floy said...

So there's a CW sample that's basically a pure Europe_MN person(an assimilated local, in other words)?
Yeah, that dosen't support what this guy is saying.

old europe said...



Bob Floy


On the other hand, the third Czech Corded Ware individual, who belongs to the "Old European" Y-haplogroup I2a2a, actually shows no signs of steppe ancestry, because he clusters with Middle Neolithic Central Europeans. Indeed, I can test all of this with the Global25/nMonte method (see here and here), using the Eneolithic North Pontian and Samara Yamnaya as steppe references.

[1] distance%=3.8801 / distance=0.038801

Corded_Ware_Czech:I7272

Barcin_N 82.6
WHG 17.4
Ukraine_Eneolithic:I6561 0
Yamnaya_Samara 0

Onur Dincer said...

What about Bell Beakers and the early R1b-L51 and R1b-P312 folks? What language family did they speak? Vasconic? What about Yamnaya and the related cultures and the early R1b-L23 and R1b-Z2103 folks? An extinct language family? Or an extinct IE language sub-family?

I agree that Corded Ware and Sintashta (and the related cultures) were IE-speaking and that R1a-M417 is a clear IE marker and Sintashta and the related cultures were specifically Indo-Iranian-speaking. I also agree with David on what he says on horses.

Davidski said...

@Ric and Onur

I don't know what the apparent late (Iron Age?) turnover in horse lineages in Western Europe means for the spread of Indo-European languages into Western Europe.

But La Tene and Gallic horses lacked Iberian ancestry, and obviously they came from the same ancestor population as Sintashta horses. So these results mirror human DNA, and might mean that earlier Indo-European waves into Western Europe were washed over by later waves more closely related to eastern Indo-Europeans?

In any case, I fully expect Hittite horses to be Sintashta-related horses too. And if so, we can then debate where the Hittites got them, based on the new ancient data that, judging from what was said in the Fages et al. paper, is surely on the way from the steppe and Anatolia.

Davidski said...

@All

I modified some of the text in the third image.

I initially said that modern domesticates don't have any ancestry from the native Iberian horse lineage. What I meant to say is that, unlike the two horses from Bronze Age Hungary and Iron Age Iberia, they don't show any recent ancestry from Iberia.

Modern domesticates do carry a minimal signal of Iberian-related ancestry dating to thousands of years before domestication, which may or may not mean very ancient Iberian ancestry. I changed the text to reflect this.

Garvan said...

Romulus said...
is it fair to call a people who had no written language illiterate?

"An illiterate person can neither read nor write written texts in his native language, while a non-literate person's language has no written text, no alphabet."

I think nonliterate is the correct word to use.

Davidski said...

@Garvan

Thanks, I changed it to non-literate.

Onur Dincer said...

I also agree with David on what he says on horses.

When I wrote this, David had already modified the text of the third image, so my comment was based on the modified text.

Dragos said...

So the earliest steppe migrations into Europe don't seem to have brought domesticated horses to Europe; which is the leitmotif of the Kurgan narrative (derpty). Even early CWC doesn't seem to have been a ''horse culture''. Moreover, its expansion was often into areas prevously devoid of significant agriculture, and they were in essence the ''first farmers', with a well-developed subsitence pattern.
Isn’t Science great ?

Davidski said...

@Dragos

So the earliest steppe migrations into Europe don't seem to have brought domesticated horses to Europe; which is the leitmotif of the Kurgan narrative (derpty).

I don't know about that. We don't have the relevant samples to test it properly.

It does seem that the whole equestrian/horse worshipping thing started to take shape as CWC was disappearing, or maybe already gone. But the people who took part in it right from the start were directly of CWC descent.

Samuel Andrews said...

@Dragos,
"Moreover, its expansion was often into areas prevously devoid of significant agriculture, and they were in essence the ''first farmers', with a well-developed subsitence pattern. "

CWC were the first farmers only in the Baltic states. But In Poland, Germany, Sweden CWC was not the first farmer.

Davidski said...

It'll be interesting to see where Sintashta got its horses from exactly.

It was either from the steppe (Sredny Stog?) via CWC, or from CWC.

But it might be something really weird like from GAC or TRB via CWC.

Ric Hern said...

@ Davidski

Yes like for example the Salzmünde Tabiano Coloured Horse...I will not be surprised if those horses originally came from a more Northern Latitude, Forest Steppe environment along the upper Volga. After all they were a sister of North European Horses...

Ric Hern said...

Fatyanovo-Balanovo area ?

Davidski said...

@Ric

Fatyanovo-Balanovo area?

Don't know, but that's another potential source.

Maybe the whole horse worship thing spread from the interaction zone between CWC and GAC?

Ric Hern said...

If Late GAC that postdate Early Corded Ware Expansion, was found in Volhynia and Podolia, does it mean that Corded Ware pushed into GAC territory from a Northeastern direction (Belarus, Lithuania) into Poland ? This could indicate that horses from the Forest Steppe and Sarmatic Forest areas basically bordering their North European Sister Group were introduced by Corded Ware. Maybe most people in the Forest Steppe zone had contact with this type of horses...

Ric Hern said...

The earliest Horseheaded Scepters if I remember correctly were also found near the Forest Steppe Zone...So maybe all horses found in the Pontic Caspian Steppe zone during the Eneolithic were domesticates brought into the open plains from the Northern Forest Steppe....

Davidski said...

Horseheaded scepters might be linked to horse hunting not domestication.

I don't think Sintashta sites ever produced any horseheaded scepters.

Bob Floy said...

Didn't Vucedol produce the earliest horsehead scepters?

Davidski said...

I think it was Khvalynsk or some other culture from around that area and time.

Bob Floy said...

Well, that's amusing. Our buddy Carlos is obsessed with Vucedol's horsehead scepters, judging by the results of a quick google search. Ha.

Dragos said...

@Sam

'' CWC were the first farmers only in the Baltic states. But In Poland, Germany, Sweden CWC was not the first farmer. ''

Yes I'm aware of that, hence my term ''often'' not ''all the time''. Id even include large part of Sweden, actually, which only had some TRB here & there., and Norway not even that. There's also most of central Asia., and these are where it made the biggest impact.
As for Germany & Poland, it was admigration, and its distribution was rather selective. Maps like this are actually incorrect (but we can't expect too much from Copenhagen).

@ Davidski

''But the people who took part in it right from the start were directly of CWC descent.''
That certainly seems to have been the case. Nevertheless, they seem to have acquired some very important admixture and cultural influences from somehwere first (recalling that rather painful but basic debate with Slumberry, a few posts back). In this must have been somehwere close to EEF-rich groups, with the know-how of building elaborate architecture, etc.

Dragos said...

As user ''Old Europe'' has outlined, horse-headed sceptres are found the Karanovo VI complex (at sites scuh as Varna & Durankulak) c. 4500 BC. They are ''high quality'' representations, whilst in comparison those in Khvalynsk area look like imitations of poorer quality. It has been claimed that this represents an evolution from basic (archaic) to more developed forms, but that explanation doesn't make much sense, especially given that they co-occur with representations of other animals, thus requiring the presence of domesticates, which had not even taken hold yet that far east.

Dragos said...

For example, one can look Northern Poland http://i66.tinypic.com/2ij3h39.jpg%5B/IMG%5D

The solid circle (-3-) are CWC barrows, with 1 & 2 being TRB & GAC, and all 3 co-existed down to the Bronze Age; confirmed by carbon dating of individuals from burials

Davidski said...

@Dragos

But the problem is that the lineage represented by GAC and TRB, which once lived in most of Europe, is now extinct. Some Sardinians get pretty close to that type of genetic structure, but that's about it.

On the other hand, the once peculiar genetic structure of the CWC has persisted and expanded, and now covers basically 3/4 of Europe and spills out into Asia.

This is why the CWC is genetically now associated with early Indo-Europeans, although of course that wasn't why it was pegged as an early Indo-European culture decades ago when ancient DNA didn't exist.

Ric Hern said...

@ Davidski

I'm only referring to the Scepters because of their probable origin near the Forest Steppe. And as you know the Forest Steppe stretched from the Southern Urals to Western Ukraine....So any culture in or near the Forest Steppe area could have switched from Hunting to Domesticating that specific line of horses....

Dragos said...


@ Davidski
I was not implying that TRB and GAC were I.E.; and it certainly is CWC which was the more expansive group, perhaps as the formative Indo-Aryans.
But you are incorrect about the extinction of GAC linegaes, and even TRB. The GAC lineage remains in fairly laudable frequencies in modern Germanic peoples; and would have been even higher had it not been for the virtual extinction of ancient Germani from the mainland after 450 AD
Some lineage of I2a1b-TRB must have survived, because it is now one of the most prevalent Slavic lineages.
Sardinians don;t link into any of this.
And, as I'm sure you're aware, whilst R1a initially expanded with CWC, a lot of its current prevalence in Europe is due to the Slavic expansions. As you see, there's a lot more to than first glance

Gaska said...

@Dragos said "So the earliest steppe migrations into Europe don't seem to have brought domesticated horses to Europe; which is the leitmotif of the Kurgan narrative (derpty)"

Any smart person engaged in scientific research (including historians, linguists, archaeologists, geneticists, anthropologists) must be clear that when a theory is developed, it always has an expiration date. People who do not assume this principle become stubborn and lose their ability to collaborate in scientific advances. The case of the theory of the Kurgans is a clear example of this situation. First, there were the uni-parental human markers that, in relation to R1b, do not coincide with the Western ones and in relation to women, they do not coincide either. Then there was the archaeological evidence of the difference in metallurgical technology, then the languages ​​and the possible disengagement of P312 from IE, now the domestication of the horse that can not be associated with an Indeuropean invasion either.

All that remains, is haplogroup R1a and the obvious relationship between CWC and steppe cultures, so we can assume that this haplogroup is responsible for the expansion of IE in mainland Europe. The participation of some R1b subclades from the steppes in the western process is limited to the existence of Z2103 in the BB culture of Hungary and Poland, that's all. Of course this opinion could change if someone shows the opposite, that is, they only have to provide evidence of P312 and their lineages in the steppes or the CWC. But at the moment this is also speculation.

Gaska said...

Study of the domestication of the horse (Equus caballus) in the Iberian Peninsula from the analysis of ancient mitochondrial DNA- Jaime Lira (december 2018)

This thesis that will be published soon, has analyzed more than 200 fossil remains of twenty Iberian sites with chronologies from the end of the Upper Pleistocene to the Middle Ages, and the results obtained have compared them with more than 2,000 DNA sequences of horses from all over the world (of modern individuals and ancient DNA sequences). This work has allowed to identify the great mitochondrial lineages that were present in the Iberian populations of wild horses of the late Pleistocene and to quantify how many lineages were lost in the transit from the Pleistocene to the Holocene.

In addition, one of the most revealing results of this research has been the identification of a genetic lineage that was distributed only in the Iberian Peninsula during the Holocene. This lineage was involved in the process of domestication in Iberia, which confirms the importance of Iberian wild horses in the formation of local domestic populations. This mitochondrial lineage was identified a few years ago between Lusitanian horses, and was named haplogroup Lusitanian C. Also, this haplogroup has appeared among horses of American breeds, a fact that shows the close relationship between Iberian horses and horses that took to the New World. Although in the past this haplogroup was widely represented among Iberian horses, at present its presence is minimal among modern Iberian horses of Iberian origin, so they run the risk of disappearing. This research not only provides information on the genetic diversity of Iberian horse populations of the past, but also allows the identification of lineages on which to develop Iberian genetic heritage management programs.

music lover said...

@Davidski I understand the genetics of the Poltavka outlier well enough. Your arguments about the first R1a of a particular subtype don't make any genetic sense because the autosomal ancestry of that Sredni Stog sample are nowhere close to the later Corded Ware Sintashta homogeneity. It is an undisputed fact that the earliest radio carbon dated sample with unambiguous autosomal and Y chromosome evidence is from the East. There are Corded Ware burials in other locations as I mentioned but they either don't have the right genetics or they are several hundred years later. We will know more when the Willerslev or Reich labs produce more data but with the current data I think this is all we can say.

With regards to horse domestication, the paper has a dearth of early material from either the Caucuses or the Steppe either of which could be candidates. We shall see when they produce data. Till them keep calm folks.

@old Europe I understand the cultural transformations that are happening but we need to wait for ancient DNA. Often these things don't go hand in hand as we've seen in Europe. People argued for an indigenous origin for beakers in England. Turns out there was a Yamnaya invasion at a level far beyond what is seen in South Asia there.

Davidski said...

@music lover

Obviously you don't have a clue about the genetics of Poltavka outlier, because if you did you'd know that this individual was a migrant to the Samara region from the west.

Davidski said...

Hey, take a look at these D-stats...

Chimp Yamnaya_Samara CWC_Germany Sredny_Stog_II -0.0029 -0.799

Chimp Yamnaya_Samara CWC_Czech Sredny_Stog_II 0.0021 0.495

Chimp Yamnaya_Samara Poltavka_outlier Sredny_Stog_II 0.0027 0.545

All the Z scores are basically zero. So you just lost the argument. And to emphasize that you lost the argument, here's one more.

Chimp Yamnaya_Samara Poltavka Sredny_Stog_II -0.0161 -4.289

Matt said...

Frustrating questions not really covered in paper:

1) Why is Sintashta horse fairly basal in treemix analysis, yet embedded in the f3 table? What's the statistical difference that drives that?

2) Thoroughbred shows similar proportion of IBE in Fig 7 as DUK2. A pulse into all caballine horses alone doesn't seem to account for that. (f3 stats suggest this is specifically Thoroughbred 0145A in particular).

3) Is DUK2 really an admixed sample between Iberian horses and another population, or was there long standing structure across Europe by its time? (Does DUK2 really have much to do with Bell Beaker when placed in Middle Bronze Age Vatya culture context?). If from an intermediate population and as a proximate source, DUK2 like horses may have contributed more to ancient horses?

(Aside, one thing that always gets me about animal adna is the differences in generation times. DUK2 is about as separated from horses today in numbers of generations as we are from El Miron.)

(Also, I was annoyed at how the f3 analysis was not very clear on the most ancient samples, so edited their graphic to cut out anything younger than 3000 YBP - https://imgur.com/a/gj0XeuZ . DUK2 is more "lower sharing with main horse group" than it is "higher sharing with Iberian horses").

music lover said...

@Davidski I know exactly what the genetics are. I've looked at it on qpAdm. It has the characteristic mix of farmer and steppe pastoralist ancestry that is present in many later samples including the corded ware and Sintashta. As it stands there is no argument as to whether that sample is a migrant because it is the undisputed first time that such an ancestry type appears in the genetic record as it stands and we have huge numbers of samples from later times further East from where this sample was found carrying precisely the same ancestry. When you produce strontium isotope data on that sample you can come back here and tell me that he's a migrant from further west. However, unless new data appears, that sample reflects the continuation of long running contact of European farmers into Asia that began shortly before the development of the Yamnaya. Further if you run f-statistics on the samples that have been currently released by the Reich team that they have uploaded online, with radio-carbon dates, it's clear that European farmer ancestry enters the steppe prior to Steppe ancestry moving into Europe from Asia, thereby implying that the formation of the first homogenous ancestry of the corded ware type cannot be anywhere close to say where the Corded Ware from Poland are geographically.

John Thomas said...

David, which particular one quarter of Europe is not 'basically CWC' in ancestry?

Davidski said...

@John Thomas

David, which particular one quarter of Europe is not 'basically CWC' in ancestry?

The Mediterranean region.

Davidski said...

@Matt

1) Why is Sintashta horse fairly basal in treemix analysis, yet embedded in the f3 table? What's the statistical difference that drives that?

My view for now is that this is because the Sintashta horse is part of a population directly ancestral to all modern domesticates. :)

2) Thoroughbred shows similar proportion of IBE in Fig 7 as DUK2. A pulse into all caballine horses alone doesn't seem to account for that. (f3 stats suggest this is specifically Thoroughbred 0145A in particular).

Probably some kind of an error. You should ask the authors about this.

3) Is DUK2 really an admixed sample between Iberian horses and another population, or was there long standing structure across Europe by its time? (Does DUK2 really have much to do with Bell Beaker when placed in Middle Bronze Age Vatya culture context?). If from an intermediate population and as a proximate source, DUK2 like horses may have contributed more to ancient horses?

I think the speculation that DUK2 or its ancestors were brought to the Carpathian Basin by Bell Beakers does make a lot of sense for obvious reasons.

And yeah, it's possible that such horses weren't recently admixed, but rather a long-standing homogeneous population within the Bell Beaker complex. It'll be interesting to see if that's the case.

Davidski said...

@music lover

Poltavka outlier forms an obvious clade with most Central European Corded Ware samples, both in terms of genome-wide DNA and his Y-chromosome lineage.

There is no gradual transition to this type of genetic structure in the Samara region. The turnover happens suddenly.

Therefore, Poltavka outlier was a migrant to the Samara region from the west, and you haven't provided any real arguments against this obvious conclusion.

You're just obfuscating because you don't like the facts.

EurDNA said...

@ Music Lover
Corroborative Isotopic data would be terrific, but it is not 100% solid. It would require analysing first generation migrants, who grew elsewhere in their specific formative years, the locales having distinctive enough geological signatures, and scientists actually knowing what the signatures are. Some of these earlier isotopic studies produced the (wrong) contunuity propoosals you just admonished.

As for EEF adxmiture in Sintastha, where do you propose they got it ? The easternmost EEF cultural block was C-T, it that did not extend much past central Ukraine. From the time period of Poltavka, its immediate western neighbour is Catacomb, and that lacks much EEF at all.
So we'd be looking toward the ''contact zone'' outlined here. I'd be surprised if Abashhevo has the required EEF admixture seen in Sintastha. Truly a mystery, still

Samuel Andrews said...

@EuDNA, According to David's G25 PCA, it looks for sure that Sintashta's EEF is from Globular Amphora. This is the same source for EEF in Corded Ware & northern Bell Beaker.

Ario said...

According to this https://populationgenomics.blog/2019/02/01/of-stone-blood-the-demography-of-the-megalithic-expansions-work-in-progress/ Globular Amphora is connected to the West European megalithic culture. Maybe this helps to explain how European-type Megalithic structures ended up in East Asia and India.

Davidski said...

@All

There's a new paper on the way with Cimmerian and Scythian samples from the North Pontic steppe. At least in this one, the authors got the Y-haplogroups right, and most of the males belong to R1a.

Out of the 31 samples of this study, 16 are male, and with sufficient Y-chromosome coverage for haplogroup assignment (Table S2). R1a (43%) and I (27%) are the two most frequent Y- chromosome hgs in present-day Ukrainians [142]. R1a is also the predominant lineage among Cimmerians, Scy_Ukr and ScySar_SU in our data, and present among Scy_Kaz as well. Thus, although acknowledging our small sample size, the individuals sampled from archaeological context associated with Scythian identity do not appear to stand out from the context of other groups living in the region before and after them. One notable difference from the present is the absence of hg N, nowadays widespread in the Volga-Uralic region and West Siberia as well as among Mongols and Altaians [165-167]; however, this result is consistent with the absence of hg N among Bronze Age and Eneolithic males from the Steppe [168]. In context of their claimed Altaian homeland it is interesting to note that one Scy_Ukr and the single Sar_Cau sample belong to the Q1c-L332 lineage which is a sub-clade of hg Q1c-L330 that today has peak frequency of 68% in Western Mongolians [169] and occurs at 17% in South Altaians [170] while being very rare (<1%) in East European populations and absent elsewhere (https://www.yfull.com/tree/Q-L330/).

Open access, but you need to register...

Shifts in the genetic landscape of the western Eurasian Steppe associated with the beginning and end of the Scythian dominance

Ric Hern said...

@ Davidski

Interesting. What is also interesting is the confirmation of the Chernyakov Culture being of Gothic descent and was basically linked to the Wielbark Culture.

Ric Hern said...

@ Davidski

"R1a (43%) and I (27%)" So to which Haplogroups did the other remaining 30% belong to ?

Aram said...

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/sci/360/6384/111/F2.large.jpg?width=800&height=600&carousel=1

They had a horse from Georgia TachtiPerda (3600 year old) which clustered with Sintashta horse in Gaunitz 2018. The amazing thing that a younger horse from NW Iran Tepe Hasanlu clustered with a french horse but not with Sintashta one. Why those horses were not included in this paper? Or I missed something?

Davidski said...

@Ric

Those figures are for modern Ukrainians.

Scroll down to table S2.

Davidski said...

@Aram

Why those horses were not included in this paper? Or I missed something?

Probably not enough data for the analyses in the new paper.

epoch said...

@David

On the Iberia_MN affinity of the Poltavka outlier. The recent paper on the Mesolithic survival of Magdalenian ancestry states that the Magdalenian signal persists is several Middle Neolithic populations. In the XL sheet of the supplementary info of that paper is a tab with qpAdm results and surprisingly this ancestry also pops up in Polish GAC. Could that be the source of that affinity in Treemix? It more or less works in nMonte:

[1] "distance%=3.1802"

Poltavka_o

CWC_Baltic_early,76.2
Barcin_N,16.2
Villabruna,5.4
ElMiron,2.2

and

[1] "distance%=2.7923"

Poltavka_o

CWC_Baltic_early,73.4
Globular_Amphora,26.6

Davidski said...

@epoch

Yes, the Iberian signal in Poltavka outlier in my old TreeMix run is probably due to GAC ancestry.

But of course there were no GAC samples available back then, and I didn't have a clue what GAC samples would be like, so I put it down in the end to a high ratio of WHG ancestry.

EurDNA said...

Huh would you believe it. The Ukrainian Yamnaya is female again..not that there's anything wrong with that

Grey said...

"Is DUK2 really an admixed sample between Iberian horses and another population, or was there long standing structure across Europe by its time?"

a while back someone mentioned that PIE distinguishes between "slow horse" and "fast horse."

wild speculatin'

"slow horse" ~ draft horse

so maybe there was one population who domesticated and bred horses for traction - wagons etc and a second one that bred horses for riding/hunting/chariots etc.

1) it wouldn't be surprising if the latter developed a military advantage.

2) however is it possible any "long standing structure" could be related to draft/pack horses - i.e. the minority signal is largest in draft horses?

(BB with type A pack horses and wagons, later arrivals with type B horses and chariots?)

there are still some breeds of plow/draft horses around - maybe their signal is higher than in thoroughbreds?

excuse for picture of shire horse

https://cf.ydcdn.net/latest/images/main/A5shirehorse.jpg

Michał said...

@Davidski

"All it shows is that there was a migration of the Proto-Corded Ware population from the steppe deep into Europe, and then some acculturation in Central Europe, leading to a more mixed gene pool. And this is probably where Sintashta came from."

The Corded Ware horizon expanded relatively early towards Ural/Eastern Euroope (see the Fatyanovo-Balanovo group, not to mention the Middle-Dnieper group) and we don't have any data suggesting those early Fatyanowo grops were not resembling Sintashta. Also, when knowing that both Tripolye (Sofievka and Lukashevka groups) and GAC were reaching the Dnieper river, it seems perfectly possible for some Early Corded Ware groupings, more specifically those from the southern part of the Early Middle Dnieper group, to have already been strongly admixed with EEF, so this could have been a place of origin for both the Central European CWC and Fatyanovo (pre-Sintashta).
https://i.ibb.co/5hQzbkJ/Tripolye-local-groups.jpg
https://i.ibb.co/L9H1cZB/Eastern-GAC-sites.png

Please note that the earliest phase of MDC (for which we have no radiocarbon dates so far, so they are dated based on typology only), seems to predate the CWC sites in Central Europe.
https://i.ibb.co/WPJM7HJ/MDC-and-Yamna-dates.jpg
The relatively low level of EEF in some CWC samples from the East Baltic region may suggest that the northernmost part of the Early Middle Dnieper (pre-CWC) culture was less affected by the contacts with Tripolye/GAC.

Also, there is nothing to suggest that Central European CWC significantly predates Fatyanovo. Since it is commonly accepted that Fatyanovo evolved into Abashevo, with the latter playing a crucial role in the genesis of Sintshta, while we have no archaeological data suggesting any relatively late mass migration of the CWC people from Central Europe to Ural, the Middle Dnieper origin of Fatyanovo>Sintashta seems to be the most likely scenario for the moment, although we should certainly wait for some aDNA results from MDC and Fatyaovo before making any final conclusions.

BTW, are you able to unequivocally distinguish between the hypothetical GAC and Tripolye source of EEF in populations like CWC?

Davidski said...

@Michał

The Corded Ware horizon expanded relatively early towards Ural/Eastern Euroope (see the Fatyanovo-Balanovo group, not to mention the Middle-Dnieper group) and we don't have any data suggesting those early Fatyanowo grops were not resembling Sintashta.

We don't have any direct evidence yet, but early Corded Ware in the East Baltic was very similar to Yamnaya and clearly different from Sintashta.

I wouldn't be surprised if it turns out that the Sintashta genotype formed somewhere very close to the Carpathians.

BTW, are you able to unequivocally distinguish between the hypothetical GAC and Tripolye source of EEF in populations like CWC?

Yes, they're quite different.

Michał said...

@Dawidski
"We don't have any direct evidence yet, but early Corded Ware in the East Baltic was very similar to Yamnaya and clearly different from Sintashta."

This can be explained by what I wrote about the possible differences regarding the EEF content (or regarding the intensity of contacts with GAC/Tripolye) in the Northern and Southern part of the Early Middle Dnieper (or "proto-CWC") culture.

"I wouldn't be surprised if it turns out that the Sintashta genotype formed somewhere very close to the Carpathians."

One problem with this scenario is that the CWC sites in that region seem to be relatively young (when compared to Kuyavia and some other regions) and nothing suggests this was a center of a "secondary" CWC expansion eastward (or in any other direction).

If Fatyanovo>Abashevo were not ancestral to Sintashta, then who do you think they were?

"Yes, they're quite different"

Thanks. So based on this, how would you estimate the contribution of both GAC and Tripolye to CWC?

Davidski said...

@Michał

I'm not saying that Fatyanovo and Abashevo weren't ancestral to Sintashta. But if they were then they had a lot of late western ancestry, as in GAC ancestry from western Ukraine and surrounds.

Both Sintashta and Corded Ware prefer GAC as the source of their farmer ancestry.

[1] "distance%=1.874"

RUS_Sintashta_MLBA

Yamnaya_RUS_Samara,64.2
UKR_Globular_Amphora,23
POL_Globular_Amphora,7.8
UKR_Mesolithic,5

[1] "distance%=1.8871"

Corded_Ware_POL

Yamnaya_RUS_Samara,45.4
UKR_Globular_Amphora,27.2
UKR_Mesolithic,19.4
UKR_Trypillia,6.6
Baltic_LTU_Mesolithic,1.4

[1] "distance%=2.6406"

Corded_Ware_DEU

Yamnaya_RUS_Samara,73
UKR_Globular_Amphora,23.6
UKR_Mesolithic,3.4

Andrzejewski said...

What’s the difference between GAC and Tripolye genotype, except that CT has lots of mtDNA V, R and HV from possible some forager groups while GAC has lots of Erteboelle I2 Haplogroup?

Andrzejewski said...

Speaking on the topic of Cucuteni Tripolye, is there any modern population resembling or largely descending from this great Neolithic civilization, or did they go the way of the dodo (and Botai Culture) except for some sporadic influence on Stredny Stog II and Yamnaya’s ethnogenesis?

weure said...

@epoch @Davidski

In my mothers' case ElMiron still comes through......

sample": "Custom:AGUser_finn_mom",
"fit": 4.2591,
"Corded_Ware_Baltic_early": 55,
"Anatolia_Barcin_N": 32.5,
"ITA_Villabruna": 8.33,
"Iberia_ElMiron": 4.17,

weure said...

@Epoch and @ Davidski
Excuse but the Runner isn't quite consistent in its outcomes.....

"sample": "Custom:AGUser_finn_mom",
"fit": 4.4434,
"Corded_Ware_Baltic_early": 54.17,
"Anatolia_Barcin_N": 32.5,
"ITA_Villabruna": 6.67,
"Iberia_ElMiron": 6.67,

ambron said...

Dawid, did you try modeling Sintashta, Polish and German CWC with Polish GAC?