Iron Age nomads of West Siberia of hg. Q1b, R1a, and basal N1a-L1026

scythian-iron-age-sakas-ancient-dna

Open access Ancient genomic time transect from the Central Asian Steppe unravels the history of the Scythians, by Gnecchi-Ruscone et al. Sci Adv. 7 (13) eabe4414.

Interesting excerpts (emphasis mine):

From an archaeological perspective, the earliest IA burials associated with nomad-warrior cultures were identified in the eastern fringes of the Kazakh Steppe, in Tuva and the Altai region (ninth century BCE).

Following this early evidence, the Tasmola culture in central and north Kazakhstan is among the earliest major IA nomad warrior cultures emerging (eighth to sixth century BCE).

iron-age-scythians-sarmatians

These earlier groups were followed by the iconic Saka cultures located

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Increased mobility in the Nordic Late Neolithic/Bronze Age

strontium-isotope-mtdna-sweden

Open access Mobility patterns in inland southwestern Sweden during the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age, by Blank, Sjögren, Knipper, et al. Archaeol. Anthropol. Sci. 13, 64 (2021).

NOTE. For a full archaeological description of the area of study, refer to the related paper Old bones or early graves? Megalithic burial sequences in southern Sweden based on 14C datings, by Blank, Sjögren, & Storå, Archaeol. Anthropol. Sci. 12, 89 (2020).

Interesting excerpts (emphasis mine):

The sampling from megalithic graves shows a chronological gap of at least 400 years (2600–2200 cal BC), when no megalithic graves were constructed or used

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Another “Pre-Yamnaya” sample from the Northern Caucasus?

wang-caucasus-maykop

I have updated the Ancient DNA Dataset, including a lot of new information from – among other sources – the latest version of Reich Lab curated Dataset, now renamed Allen Ancient DNA Resource (AADR). This includes new columns:

  1. Object-ID: I am now using whenever possible the Master-ID; Version-ID for a quick identification of the ‘best’ sample to include in SmartPCA or ADMIXTURE runs; and Index as a key with a unique reference number for each sample. That should make for enough stable references for any external tool to use the data.
  2. mtDNA: Added mtDNA coverage
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IBD sharing between Corded Ware and Yamnaya-related populations

yamnaya-corded-ware

Oral communication Ancient DNA and the New Science of the Human Past by David Reich (March 3, 2021).

I noticed this interesting slide called “Caught red-handed”, at approximately 45m 17s, where David Reich asserts that sampled Corded Ware populations had many “close cousins” with Yamnaya-related populations “within generations”. The method could also be used, always according to Reich, to identify “who the Yamnaya mixed with to form groups like Corded Ware”.

NOTE. Notice also the the number of new sampled individuals from Khvalynsk, Ekaterinovka, and new Yamnaya groups from Chelyabinsk, Urals, Volga, Don, Moldova, and Romania.

This represents the … Read the rest “IBD sharing between Corded Ware and Yamnaya-related populations”

Germanic runes in the Prague-Type Pottery culture

slavic-prague-type-pottery-culture

Recent paper (behind paywall) Runes from Lány (Czech Republic) – The oldest inscription among Slavs. A new standard for multidisciplinary analysis of runic bones by Macháček et al. J. Archaeol Sci (2021).

Interesting excerpts (emphasis mine):

To date no archaeological find is generally accepted as evidence for a direct contact between Germanic tribes and Early Slavs in Central Europe (Brather, 2004). Here we report a novel archaeological find in support of a direct contact: a rune-inscribed fragment of a bone from the late 6th century found in a Slavic settlement. Runes are an alphabetic script, called fuþark,

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The importance of archaeology before population genomics

early-mesolithic-scandinavia

Recent paper First encounters in the north: cultural diversity and gene flow in Early Mesolithic Scandinavia, by Manninen et al. Antiquity (2021).

The authors criticize the model laid out in Günther et al. (2018), whereby the origin of the previously defined Mesolithic Scandinavian hunter-gatherer genetic group (SHG) was defined as an admixture between genetically defined WHG and EHG populations that migrated into Scandinavia from two separate Ice Age refugia: the south (WHG) and north (EHG). This dualistic model was further associated with two specific lithic blade technologies present in Early Mesolithic Scandinavia (Sørensen et al. 2013), as summarized … Read the rest “The importance of archaeology before population genomics”

R1b in Eastern Arabia Late Neolithic / Bronze Age

ras-al-hamra-221-portada

A reader asked my opinion about my reported R1b subclade of one low quality sample from Ra’s Al-Ḥamrāʾ 5 necropolis, Muscat (Oman), published (without Y-DNA) in Harney et al. (2020). For those interested, here are the relevant calls, with information on the graves taken from Salvatori (2007):

I11919_I11920_I11921: Grave 221 (ca. 3700-3200 BC), mtDNA H2a2a1, Y-DNA R1bL754 (xPH155; xL389P297M269; xPF6323PF6292).
* The samples show a straightforward path (but full of deamination question marks): CT (with 1 ancestral call M5813 1x C-A) -PP295M45P284P226 -KM526YSC0000186 Read the rest “R1b in Eastern Arabia Late Neolithic / Bronze Age”

On Fatyanovo and the survival of R1a-Z93* among Mari-Permians

fatyanovo-balanovo-corded-ware

The recent preprint on ancient DNA from Veretye, Lyalovo/Volosovo and Fatyanovo from Saag et al. (2020) has been published in Science Advances Vol. 7, no. 4, eabd6535, and with it the BAM files.

Here are the Y-SNP calls from the files, following the FTDNA Haplotree standard, with Fatyanovo individuals in alphabetical order:

  • Veretye PES001 from Peschanitsa (ca. 10785–10626 calBC), mtDNA U4a1, Y-DNA R1aM459YP1301(pre-YP1272?), with 2 SNPs derived – YP1306 (T-C, 5 reads) and Y12474 (T-A, 6 reads) – and 46 SNPs ancestral at the YP1272 level. A sample with 5× coverage that
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Recent Yamnaya-related intrusion in a Denmark Late Neolithic burial

denmark-single-grave-gjerrild

Open access Genomic Steppe ancestry in skeletons from the Neolithic Single Grave Culture in Denmark, by Egfjord et al. PLoS One (2021).

Relevant excerpts (emphasis mine, content under CC-BY):

Gjerrild stone cist

The Gjerrild stone cist in northern Djursland, eastern Jutland, is remarkable for containing the largest and best-preserved assemblage of SGC skeletons known from Denmark. From this follows a unique opportunity to obtain information on the genetic ancestry of people representing the SGC in Denmark. In the cultural history of Neolithic Denmark, northern Djursland is peculiar as this area lacks finds from the final TRB period but

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