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Author Topic: The effect Isles migration on continental European DNA  (Read 1229 times)
David Mc
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« on: August 30, 2012, 02:16:07 AM »

I’d like to build on an issue that I’ve seen raised a few times on this forum, including today: the effect of migration on the DNA record. I’ve been around long enough to know that this can be a controversial topic, but I’m also new enough to need some help if I’m off base.

Let’s use M222 as a springboard for discussion.

When I look at M222, it seems very Irish (or, one could argue, Scottish). As others have pointed out, though, M222 is also present on the continent.  This raises a question as to this group’s origins. Is it Irish or continental? This is where the debate typically begins.

My question, though, is slightly different. When can we reasonably introduce the idea of historical population movements as an explanation of “alien” DNA? I’m not talking about the wandering Irish monks of forum lore, but about larger and more dramatic movements.

Over half a million Irish mercenaries are believed to have migrated to the Continent between 16th and 18th centuries. Some of them no doubt returned home. Some of them will have stayed.

Large numbers of Scots mercenaries also migrated to the continent, many of them settling in France, Sweden, and Germany. William Lithgow even spoke of finding 30,000 Scottish families who had migrated to Poland in 1616 AD.

Given the vast numbers of Isles-men moving around Europe over the last few centuries, isn’t it only reasonable to assume that we will find significant numbers of modern Europeans carrying their DNA? I realize that the older the SNP the more complicated this becomes, but surely much of the Isles-appearing DNA is just that-- Isles DNA.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2012, 02:19:46 AM by David Mc » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2012, 05:53:24 AM »

David,

My understanding of the principal inbound and outbound migrations is as follows:

Inbound
1) Mesolithic Settlers
2) Neolithic Settlers
3) Megalithic People
4) Celtic People
       Atlantic Celts
       River Celts
       Central European Celts
       Copper, Bronze, Iron Ages
5) Vikings
6) Normans
7) Anglo Saxons
8) Plantations (Ulster, Leinster, Munster)
9) Huguenot French
10) Palatine Germans
11) Modern Migrants (Polish, etc.)

Outbound
1) Dal Riada
2) Celtic Monastic Movement
3) Viking Slaves
4) Flight of the Earls
5) Wild Geese
6) Cromwellian Deportations
7) Scots Irish Emigration
8) The Great Famine
9) 20th C Migration (UK, US)
10) 21st C Migration (Europe)

Lots of opportunities for I, J, R1b, L21, DF13, U152, U106 and others to mix.
My objective is to identify the traces of these migrations.
I have tried to illustrate it on the following boards (work in progress).

http://pinterest.com/gerardcorcoran/

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Richard Rocca
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« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2012, 07:32:08 AM »

I’d like to build on an issue that I’ve seen raised a few times on this forum, including today: the effect of migration on the DNA record. I’ve been around long enough to know that this can be a controversial topic, but I’m also new enough to need some help if I’m off base.

Let’s use M222 as a springboard for discussion.

When I look at M222, it seems very Irish (or, one could argue, Scottish). As others have pointed out, though, M222 is also present on the continent.  This raises a question as to this group’s origins. Is it Irish or continental? This is where the debate typically begins.

My question, though, is slightly different. When can we reasonably introduce the idea of historical population movements as an explanation of “alien” DNA? I’m not talking about the wandering Irish monks of forum lore, but about larger and more dramatic movements.

Over half a million Irish mercenaries are believed to have migrated to the Continent between 16th and 18th centuries. Some of them no doubt returned home. Some of them will have stayed.

Large numbers of Scots mercenaries also migrated to the continent, many of them settling in France, Sweden, and Germany. William Lithgow even spoke of finding 30,000 Scottish families who had migrated to Poland in 1616 AD.

Given the vast numbers of Isles-men moving around Europe over the last few centuries, isn’t it only reasonable to assume that we will find significant numbers of modern Europeans carrying their DNA? I realize that the older the SNP the more complicated this becomes, but surely much of the Isles-appearing DNA is just that-- Isles DNA.


Good topic David. It's hard to picture finding a 'significant' amount of L21 on the continent due to these late migrations. Most movements that you described leave a cultural imprint on the settled area when they are significant, sometimes even changing the local dialect. Given that, I don't really know of any examples of that happening and attributing it to L21 outside of the UK and US samples.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2012, 07:41:07 AM by Richard Rocca » Logged

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Heber
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« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2012, 08:11:16 AM »

"While the Irish population in Continental Europe is c450,000-550,000, there are estimated 2.8 million first, second and third generation Irish based there."
If you figure in the large numbers who left in the past 1,500 years and their impact on a a then smaller European population their numbers are significant. Add to this the rest of the Isles and you have a measurable impact on DNA. For example the small number of Viking slaves taken during the Viking era accounts for up to 60% of mtDNA in Iceland.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irish_people_in_mainland_Europe
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irish_diaspora

http://www.plosgenetics.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pgen.1000343
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A.D.
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« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2012, 09:00:35 AM »

I think the 60% given for mtDNA is now higher andthe slave idea is under question as seeming ly these Irish and Scottish females seemed to properties and even socialstanding. It's also siad that the Y-dna is 90% Viking (any guesses? I has been surgested)
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alan trowel hands.
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« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2012, 11:40:47 AM »

Personally I think M222 is too young to be continental in origin or at least its on the borderline.  I think it is more likely to be isles. I have a hunch it came from Celtic Britain poddibly from the Damnoni of SW Scotland/NW England but its only a hunch. 
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eochaidh
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« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2012, 12:07:24 PM »

This is one family, the Taaffe family, who have been on the Continent and marrying Continental women from Austria, Germany, Czech Republic, Hungary etc. for hundreds of years.

One of my great grandmothers was a Taaffe, and I think that some Hungarian, German and Romanian matches that I find on 23andMe's Ancestry Finder could be from Taaffe DNA being on the Continent for the last few hundred years.

Again, this is just one family.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viscount_Taaffe
« Last Edit: August 30, 2012, 12:08:39 PM by eochaidh » Logged

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A_Wode
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« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2012, 12:57:10 PM »


This comment is often pushed by "nordicists" - individuals who consider the "germanic race" superior, and those of us from UK/Ireland as an inferior species.

Here's the kicker -
http://dienekes.blogspot.ca/2012/08/mtdna-from-medieval-north-wales.html found that individuals actually originated in Iceland and moved to Wales. Sounds strange right? Well, my father's I2 has a FGS match to western England with a Welsh originating surname (his mtDNA connection is Somerset). Combine this with I2 found in your earlier cited study of medieval mtDNA from Iceland - and the migration is bidiretional, in fact the scientific evidence points to Iceland -> Wales immigration rather than the reverse "slave" Wales -> Iceland  direction migration.

"Two of these were high (Skeletons 33 and 60), indicating that these individuals had spent their childhoods in areas with high strontium ratios, representative of precambrian rock types, possibly older than those of the Holyhead Rock group, such as in Northern Scotland or Norway. The skeletal samples yielding the lowest strontium ratio (Skeleton 52) are of compelling interest, since the ratio is indicative of upbringing in only one place in the North Atlantic, namely Iceland."
« Last Edit: August 30, 2012, 01:01:41 PM by A_Wode » Logged
Heber
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« Reply #8 on: August 30, 2012, 04:08:38 PM »

I assure you I am not "nordicists", whatever that means, neither do I consider any race superior to another. I'm sure Agnar Helgason et Al understand Icelandic DNA better than I do so I will leave the last word to them.

"The Icelanders are one of the most studied populations in human genetics [1]–[5]. According to historical and archaeological sources, Iceland was settled roughly 1100 years ago by a mixture of people that originated primarily from Scandinavia and the British Isles [6],[7]. Studies of mtDNA variation indicate that contemporary Icelanders trace about 37% of their matrilineal ancestry to Scandinavia, with the remainder coming from the populations of Scotland and Ireland [1],[8],[9]. In contrast, Y-chromosome analyses suggest that 75–80% of their patrilineal ancestry originated in Scandinavia [3],[9]"
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Dubhthach
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« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2012, 04:15:14 PM »


This comment is often pushed by "nordicists" - individuals who consider the "germanic race" superior, and those of us from UK/Ireland as an inferior species.

Given that Heber is from the West of Ireland and bears a "Gaelic surname" I very much doubt that's what he's trying to say.

-Paul
(DF41+)

ps. I'm also from the west of Ireland -- Gaillimh abú!
« Last Edit: August 30, 2012, 04:18:35 PM by Dubhthach » Logged
eochaidh
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« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2012, 04:58:28 PM »

Well, of course, all those from Loch Garman are Vikings! Loch Garman abu!

Maolmordha MacEochadha (Uigingeach)
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« Reply #11 on: August 30, 2012, 04:59:44 PM »

My surname has a sect that left Ireland for France.  I haven't been able to find them in France but I do have a very distant match (7 at 67 but SNP confirmed) with a different surname from Poitou-Charente.

Quote from: WalshRootsWeb
Following the Jacobite defeat in Ireland by Williamite forces, marked by the capitulation of Limerick in 1691, the pick and flower of the 14,000 Irish troops fighting for the cause of James II (Catholic King of England - deposed in 1688) elected to leave their native land and seek their fortune on the continent of Europe....
This Walsh family was later distinguished in France as Counts and Viscounts "de Serrant."
http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~walsh/serrant.html
« Last Edit: August 30, 2012, 05:08:23 PM by Mikewww » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2012, 05:02:17 PM »

I wonder if there were any irish mercenaries that got involved with viking groups.
Wikipedia (I know) has a bit about the Gallagher (meaing foreign helper/worker) surname coming from aligning with vikings.
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« Reply #13 on: August 30, 2012, 05:07:45 PM »

I wonder if there were any irish mercenaries that got involved with viking groups.
Wikipedia (I know) has a bit about the Gallagher (meaing foreign helper/worker) surname coming from aligning with vikings.

Although it is, again, a somewhat distant match (6 at 67) I've got a match that is SNP confirmed from the Baltic side of Sweden.  We can't figure it out. He traces his family back to the 1500's there and never appears to have been close to SE Ireland or Wales, where my family and a number of other matches are from. Of course, many people bring up the possibility of the Viking thrall trade but I don't think the Vikings were big in South Wales.  I don't see any reason why this lineage couldn't have somehow been engaged in friendly or cooperative exchange with Scandinavians.
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« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2012, 05:10:54 PM »

...  I'm sure Agnar Helgason et Al understand Icelandic DNA better than I do so I will leave the last word to them.

"The Icelanders are one of the most studied populations in human genetics [1]–[5]. According to historical and archaeological sources, Iceland was settled roughly 1100 years ago by a mixture of people that originated primarily from Scandinavia and the British Isles [6],[7]. Studies of mtDNA variation indicate that contemporary Icelanders trace about 37% of their matrilineal ancestry to Scandinavia, with the remainder coming from the populations of Scotland and Ireland [1],[8],[9]. In contrast, Y-chromosome analyses suggest that 75–80% of their patrilineal ancestry originated in Scandinavia [3],[9]"

The one thing that's always puzzled me is that the R1b proportions in Iceland are low but this is not true on the far northern islands of Scotland or the northern coasts of Ireland and Scotland. I'm not sure the Vikings had as much impact in these areas, at least compared to their impact on Iceland.
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chris1
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« Reply #15 on: August 30, 2012, 09:20:21 PM »

I don't see any reason why this lineage couldn't have somehow been engaged in friendly or cooperative exchange with Scandinavians.
I think friendly, later medieval/more recent trade routes are sometimes overlooked.
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David Mc
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« Reply #16 on: August 31, 2012, 12:33:08 AM »

I avoided the slavery example because it raises even thornier issues regarding ancient DNA. They are serious issues, though, and it's good that it's been raised.

Scholars (such as G.E.M de Ste. Croix and Scott Bartchy) have observed that Rome was one of only five societies in world history entirely based on slave labor. It is estimated that between 30-40% of the population of ancient Rome were slaves. Not all of these would have been foreign-- Romans facing bankruptcy could sell themselves into slavery to pay off their debts. The vast majority were foreign, though, and were either taken in war or sold by their fellow countrymen.

This means, again, a massive influx of alien DNA into Italy. Britons, Gauls, and Germans and others will have left a significant mark that should still be visible in the modern Italian gene pool. But it doesn't end with slaves. By the end of the Empire, many Roman citizens were descended from "barbarians" who had won their citizenship through military service. Again, we're not speaking about small numbers here, but the genetic equivalent of a tectonic shift.

Practically speaking, then, how do we bring all of this to bear on seeking the origins of sub-clades? If we see a DF23 person in Italy, does this suggest an Alpine origin for DF23, or does it suggest that this person is descended from a Gaul/Briton?

I often wonder about this when I read Maliclavelli's arguments for an Italian refugum. It is possible that the genetic diversity of R-L23 and descendants in Italy points to there being a refugum of some sort there. But it seems equally possible that this genetic diversity is the result of peoples from all over Europe being enslaved and brought back to the Apennine Peninsula.

I'm afraid I'm not providing answers so much as I am raising questions that have been troubling me. Thanks to those who are taking part, though.

Mike, in re: the Vikings, I think you're right. In an Irish context many were taken by Norse slavers. There were a lot of Irish who threw in their lot with the Norse settlers, as well, though. My understanding is that Galloway, for example, was settled by both Hiberno-Norsemen and their Irish allies. I don't know if that's genetically demonstrable or not, though...
« Last Edit: August 31, 2012, 12:44:16 AM by David Mc » Logged

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« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2012, 01:00:08 AM »

....This means, again, a massive influx of alien DNA into Italy. Britons, Gauls, and Germans and others will have left a significant mark that should still be visible in the modern Italian gene pool.
....
Practically speaking, then, how do we bring all of this to bear on seeking the origins of sub-clades. If we see a DF23 person in Italy, does this suggest an Alpine origin for DF23, or does it suggest that this person is descended from a Gaul/Briton?

In reality., I don't think this poses a big problem. For instance we don't find a massive amount of R1b-L21 in Italy. This is far and away the largest haplogroup in the Isles yet it hardly exists in Italy, particularly as you move towards the heart of the Roman Empire, Rome.

Where's the massive influx from Britain? If it ever was that massive, they didn't survive.  If they did survive, we can easily check their haplotypes for cluster matches with Brits.  We just don't see it though. 

What should we conclude? It's not that big a deal.

Scandinavia may be different so that is another question.
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David Mc
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« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2012, 01:26:01 AM »

Thanks for the correction, Mike. I may have overextended myself there.
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« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2012, 08:51:25 AM »


In reality., I don't think this poses a big problem. For instance we don't find a massive amount of R1b-L21 in Italy. This is far and away the largest haplogroup in the Isles yet it hardly exists in Italy, particularly as you move towards the heart of the Roman Empire, Rome.

Where's the massive influx from Britain? If it ever was that massive, they didn't survive.  If they did survive, we can easily check their haplotypes for cluster matches with Brits.  We just don't see it though. 

What should we conclude? It's not that big a deal.

Scandinavia may be different so that is another question.

You are right Mike, and this really speaks to the dangers of concluding too much from single finds on an FTDNA map, especially when the kit is geographically far removed from a subclade's center of importance. These one-offs can be the result of just about anything.
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alan trowel hands.
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« Reply #20 on: August 31, 2012, 09:19:20 AM »

....This means, again, a massive influx of alien DNA into Italy. Britons, Gauls, and Germans and others will have left a significant mark that should still be visible in the modern Italian gene pool.
....
Practically speaking, then, how do we bring all of this to bear on seeking the origins of sub-clades. If we see a DF23 person in Italy, does this suggest an Alpine origin for DF23, or does it suggest that this person is descended from a Gaul/Briton?

  

In reality., I don't think this poses a big problem. For instance we don't find a massive amount of R1b-L21 in Italy. This is far and away the largest haplogroup in the Isles yet it hardly exists in Italy, particularly as you move towards the heart of the Roman Empire, Rome.

Where's the massive influx from Britain? If it ever was that massive, they didn't survive.  If they did survive, we can easily check their haplotypes for cluster matches with Brits.  We just don't see it though.  

What should we conclude? It's not that big a deal.

Scandinavia may be different so that is another question.

think the reason why we dont see the expected hotchpotch of yDNA you would except from free movement in a massive empire in places like Britian, Gaul and Italy is the phenomenon that prior to recent centuries, it was the wealthy who produced far more surviving descendants while the lineages at the bottom of the pile would be lucky to retain a surviving male lineage for even a few generations.  Also, the local top huys would have a lot of reproductive activities!  Put it this way how many descendants did Niall have and how many did his slave shephard have?  Females relationships had massive implications in terms of dowries etc in Celtic society and would not have happened lightly in the land owning classes with something to lose.  it was likely mainly arranged, formal etc and with dire consequences when this was flouted much as we still see in some parts of the world.   I dont think male slaves had much in the way of options other than female slaves and I am sure even they were subject to the owners will.  I dont think today we have a lot of remaining lineages of the multi-generations poor of the prehistoric and ealry historic eras unless they somehow broke out of poverty.  

I know people tend to think of the large working class families of the 19th and first half of the 20th century but that was an odd period when modernisation crossed over with a pre-modern expectation for children not to survive (encouraging large families) and resulted in a boom.  We see this phenomenon today in developing countries.  I think its pretty clear that was not the norm in prior times.  
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« Reply #21 on: August 31, 2012, 09:49:59 AM »

I assure you I am not "nordicists", whatever that means, neither do I consider any race superior to another. I'm sure Agnar Helgason et Al understand Icelandic DNA better than I do so I will leave the last word to them.


None of these studies, and yes I believe I read this one a few years back, ever report how they came to these strong conclusions of defining mtDNA as British vs local Icelandic. I can only assume that they compare mtDNA sequences in both areas and determine where one is more common.

If you guys read my above passage, and the study I cited, it is clear the situation is far more complex than raiding. I suspect there were many prehistoric movements (settlement) of various people across NW Europe.

I realise that Heber is not a nordicist, but very many peoplle have drank the koolaid on the whole viking slave thing, and it needs to be cleared up since we have no evidence as of yet.
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« Reply #22 on: August 31, 2012, 09:55:24 AM »

...  I'm sure Agnar Helgason et Al understand Icelandic DNA better than I do so I will leave the last word to them.

"The Icelanders are one of the most studied populations in human genetics [1]–[5]. According to historical and archaeological sources, Iceland was settled roughly 1100 years ago by a mixture of people that originated primarily from Scandinavia and the British Isles [6],[7]. Studies of mtDNA variation indicate that contemporary Icelanders trace about 37% of their matrilineal ancestry to Scandinavia, with the remainder coming from the populations of Scotland and Ireland [1],[8],[9]. In contrast, Y-chromosome analyses suggest that 75–80% of their patrilineal ancestry originated in Scandinavia [3],[9]"

The one thing that's always puzzled me is that the R1b proportions in Iceland are low but this is not true on the far northern islands of Scotland or the northern coasts of Ireland and Scotland. I'm not sure the Vikings had as much impact in these areas, at least compared to their impact on Iceland.

Mikewww, the only study I am aware of reported R1b to be about 40%. I don't consider that low :/
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« Reply #23 on: August 31, 2012, 06:16:34 PM »

The one thing that's always puzzled me is that the R1b proportions in Iceland are low but this is not true on the far northern islands of Scotland or the northern coasts of Ireland and Scotland. I'm not sure the Vikings had as much impact in these areas, at least compared to their impact on Iceland.

Mikewww, the only study I am aware of reported R1b to be about 40%. I don't consider that low :/

I agree, AWode. I didn't intend to communicate R1b was devoid or rare in anyway in Iceland, just relatively low compare to the areas of Ireland and Scotland directly across from there... where Scandinavians should have and did hit as well.
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