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,
… Read the rest “Germanic runes in the Prague-Type Pottery culture”
Recent paper (behind paywall) Population genomics of the Viking world, by Margaryan et al. Nature (2020), containing almost exactly the same information as its bioRxiv preprint.
I have used Y-SNP inferences recently reported by FTDNA (see below) to update my Ancient DNA Dataset and the ArcGIS Online Map, and also to examine the chronological and geographical evolution of Y-DNA (alone and in combination with ancestry).
Sections of this post:
- Iron Age to Medieval Y-DNA
- Iron Age to Medieval Ancestry
- Iron Age to Medieval Y-DNA + Ancestry
- FTDNA’s big public debut
I. Iron Age to Medieval
… Read the rest “Vikings, Vikings, Vikings! Hordes of high quality ancient DNA”
When I started ruminating in 2016 over the apparent differences between populations that kept the two-velar distinction of Indo-Tocharian, and the only two unrelated dialectal groups that showed a strong satemization trend, I believed that – much like in modern times – there would be no clear-cut division in terms of ancestry or Y-DNA haplogroups between neighbouring forest-steppe and steppe populations.
The answer to the question of interacting ethnolinguistic groups had to lie, as everything else, on the investigation of fine-scale population movements that must have put Uralic-speaking peoples as the main substratum of Balto-Slavic and Indo-Iranian.
Still, … Read the rest “RISE1.SG, R1b from Poland CWC, a likely mislabelled Balto-Slav”
Open access Population genomics of the Viking world, by Margaryan et al. bioRxiv (2019), with a huge new sampling from the Viking Age.
#EDIT (16 SEP 2020): The paper has been published in Nature.
Interesting excerpts (emphasis mine, modified for clarity):
To understand the genetic structure and influence of the Viking expansion, we sequenced the genomes of 442 ancient humans from across Europe and Greenland ranging from the Bronze Age (c. 2400 BC) to the early Modern period (c. 1600 CE), with particular emphasis on the Viking Age. We find that the period preceding the Viking Age was
… Read the rest “Vikings, Vikings, Vikings! “eastern” ancestry in the whole Baltic Iron Age”
This is the second of four posts on the Corded Ware—Uralic identification:
I read from time to time that “we have not sampled Uralic speakers yet”, and “we are waiting to see when Uralic-speaking peoples are sampled”. Are we, though?
Proto-language homelands are based on linguistic data, such as guesstimates for dialectal evolution, loanwords and phonetic changes for language contacts, toponymy … Read the rest “Corded Ware—Uralic (II): Finno-Permic and the expansion of N-L392/Siberian ancestry”
Open access Genomic and Strontium Isotope Variation Reveal Immigration Patterns in a Viking Age Town, by Krzewińska et al., Current Biology (2018).
Interesting excerpts (emphasis mine, some references deleted for clarity):
The town of Sigtuna in eastern central Sweden was one of the pioneer urban hubs in the vast and complex communicative network of the Viking world. The town that is thought to have been royally founded was planned and organized as a formal administrative center and was an important focal point for the establishment of Christianity . The material culture in Sigtuna indicates that the town had intense
… Read the rest “Viking Age town shows higher genetic diversity than Neolithic and Bronze Age”
Two papers have been recently published, offering another interesting use of ancient DNA analysis for Archaeology and, potentially, Linguistics.
Open access Ancient DNA reveals the chronology of walrus ivory trade from Norse Greenland, by Star, Barrett, Gondek, & Boessenkool, bioRxiv (2018).
Abstract (emphasis mine):
The search for walruses as a source of ivory -a popular material for making luxury art objects in medieval Europe- played a key role in the historic Scandinavian expansion throughout the Arctic region. Most notably, the colonization, peak and collapse of the medieval Norse colony of Greenland have all been attributed to the proto-globalization of
… Read the rest “Tracking material cultures with ancient DNA: medieval Norse walrus ivory trade, and leather shields from Zanzibar”
Open access Network analysis of the Viking Age in Ireland as portrayed in Cogadh Gaedhel re Gallaibh, by Yose et al., Royal Society Open Science (2018).
Cogadh Gaedhel re Gallaibh (‘The War of the Gaedhil with the Gaill’) is a medieval Irish text, telling how an army under the leadership of Brian Boru challenged Viking invaders and their allies in Ireland, culminating with the Battle of Clontarf in 1014. Brian’s victory is widely remembered for breaking Viking power in Ireland, although much modern scholarship disputes traditional perceptions. Instead of an international conflict between Irish and Viking, interpretations based
… Read the rest “Network analysis of the Viking Age in Ireland as portrayed in Cogadh Gaedhel re Gallaibh”
Interesting and related publications, now appearing in pairs…
1. The Irish DNA Atlas: Revealing Fine-Scale Population Structure and History within Ireland, by Gilbert et al., in Scientific Reports (2017).
The extent of population structure within Ireland is largely unknown, as is the impact of historical migrations. Here we illustrate fine-scale genetic structure across Ireland that follows geographic boundaries and present evidence of admixture events into Ireland. Utilising the ‘Irish DNA Atlas’, a cohort (n = 194) of Irish individuals with four generations of ancestry linked to specific regions in Ireland, in combination with 2,039 individuals from the
… Read the rest “Migrations painted by Irish and Scottish genetic clusters, and their relationship with British and European ones”