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Author Topic: Bell Beaker & R1b - A weak hypothesis  (Read 6663 times)
Northern Line
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« on: June 28, 2013, 05:56:18 PM »

Hi, first of all I really respect your collective genetic knowledge. I'm approaching this from an archaeological perspective so I can't really comment on the genetic variety of R1b itself bar the largest sub-groups.

I cannot accept, from the point of view of archaeology, R1b arriving into Britain and Ireland only during the Copper Age. It goes against everything I have learnt of prehistoric Britain and of human nature.

I've noticed that the Atlantic Megalithic culture of Western Europe tends to be where we have the highest concentration of R1b today. Megaliths of this sort are found in great number in Portugal, Northern Spain/Basque Country/ Western France and the British Isles. To me, this suggests a spread of R1b earlier than the Bronze Age but later than the Mesolithic.

It is inconceivable that a major genocide occurred all across Europe perpetrated by R1b Bell Beaker males. Neolithic Europe had a flourishing culture and we would be looking towards hundreds of thousands of people dying. Britain in ~2500BC is estimated to have had a population of many tens of thousands. We would find the remains of this violent time. We don't. We do see the early Neolithic as a violent time though. If I recall correctly, in the early Neolithic 10-20% of human remains found show signs of violent injuries. We don't see this with the time of the Bell Beaker phenomenon. Jews in Nazi Germany made up a tiny minority of Germans and the Nazis with all their modern weapons could not kill them all. Therefore, the killing of 60% plus of Western Europe's male population is unthinkable and ridiculous with these population numbers. Please don't say it was disease or social effects that made R1b so heavily present today. People from Britain had long been in contact with the continent. Any disease affecting the Neolithic population would have been equally affecting the Bell Beaker people. Socially, it is ridiculous to think that the other haplogroups were bred out. That would require one homogeneous social system from Iberia, through the Alps, to the British Isles and Germany etc. People don't work like that.  

It is also incorrectly assumed that the Bell Beaker people had better weaponry. This is a myth; copper is not a durable metal and not useful in a war-like scenario. Neolithic populations and the possible Bell Beaker people will have had equal weaponry. This is not a Native Americans vs Europeans type scenario.

Barry Cunliffe in his recent book "Britain Begins"  remarks how Bell Beakers are found in only small numbers in Ireland and even then they usually only occur alongside "indigenous" culture. This is evidence for continuity. Western Ireland is up to 90% R1b so this haplogroup must have been earlier.

One final piece of evidence against the R1b Bell Beaker theory is that stone circles continued to be built and used during the early Bronze Age. This shows a continuity of culture which one would not expect of genocidal maniacs. In Scotland, a recent study by the University of Aberdeen  shows Bell Beaker burials related to earlier Neolithic Stone Circle alignments and Bell Beakers were found alongside earlier megalithic phenomena. Again, continuity.

The Basque language is another problem. It is not Indo-European yet 90%+ Basque Y-DNA is R1b. Therefore, Indo-European languages did not enter this part of Europe during this period alongside R1b.

Now, this is the serious part. Some of the members on here are clearly very political and show a complete bias. Now, this is not to claim I am free from bias. I want to be descended from Cro-Magnon but I realise this is not at all likely considering the evidence. Others allow their bias to completely affect their work. Members from this and other forums have remarked about not liking "politically correct Anti-Migrationists" and one forum member talked of Bell Beaker people "routing" the earlier people in war....with no evidence! If you see a simple pot as evidence of a genocide event then you clearly must see the Romans having replaced all the Iron Age people of Gaul, Britain, Iberia etc. Others appear to love the idea of their R1b ancestors being a warlike, ultra-aggressive Mongolesque invasion force wiping out people all over Europe. This is unrealistic nonsense and is more akin to the Stormfront version of history. People are random!

One must remember how metallurgy will have looked to a Neolithic person. It will have been seen as magic, how this lump of apparent stone will melt into a red hot liquid then poured into a cast where it magically becomes a solid, cold knife etc. This explains the sudden loss of British Neolithic religion. Try and enter a Stone Age mind. In the South Pacific, during WW2, native tribes worshipped American planes and radios, building mock wooden planes to try and encourage the Gods to give them the American foodstuffs. Faced with an advanced new technology, the Americans became their focus of religion.

My hypothesis is that R1b arrived into a sparsely populated Europe of hunter gatherers and early farmers and achieved a greater population density leading to violence. The Early/Middle Neolithic is the best candidate for a spread of R1b. I do not accept the Basque/R1b/Ice Age hypothesis either.

Thanks for reading, this issue has been bothering me recently.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 09:06:48 PM by Northern Line » Logged
Maliclavelli
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2013, 08:48:15 PM »

Many thanks for your writing. Perhaps you know that my theory of the Italian Refugium of R1b amongst other haplogroups presupposes a diffusion from Italy at least from 7500 years ago with the agriculturalists by sea to Iberia and later to the Isles, see the presence of R-L51 in the place where they landed in Iberia but also the presence in Ireland.
Northern line or Southern line?
I carried many proofs (against all of course, also in this forum) of this theory, and the migration was at least twice: from Iberia to the Isles but also from Italy directly Northwards: see Amesbury Archer etc., but also my mtDNA haplogroup: K1a1b1e, which demonstrates a link with the Isles but not with Iberia.
Someone I don't want to name said that I carry only single samples: every proof is single, but I carried tons of proofs.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2013, 02:09:29 AM by Maliclavelli » Logged

Maliclavelli


YDNA: R-S12460


MtDNA: K1a1b1e

Northern Line
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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2013, 09:25:37 PM »

Hi

Yes, I've read your theory on here quite a few times. I'm not in a position to judge how R1b came to Europe as I know very little about genetics itself and I'm not very knowledgeable on prehistory outside of the British Isles. All I know is that the Beaker people did not commit genocide in Britain. Please note, I do believe Beaker people were very mobile (hence the Amesbury Archer etc) but not warlike. I see trade and a new religious culture.

I think the only way we will solve this is by ancient DNA. The dating of R1b and its subgroups seems very fluid and depends on the researcher. Therefore, I will not place my trust in any one study. I believe the oldest R1b found so far is in Kromsdorf in Germany (2600-2500 BC)? I suspect we'll find it from earlier also.

To solve R1b, in my opinion, we need a decent amount of Mesolithic DNA, Neolithic DNA and Bronze Age DNA from an isolated place such as Britain. If R1b appears early then we need to look at your theory and others. If it's later then something big must have occurred that's not registering on the archaeological scene so far. However, this could take 20 years for it to be broad enough. No study on R1b will compensate for the lack of ancient DNA.

I wonder how possible it is that R1b is Mesolithic? Perhaps it spread from the East (Italy or Anatolia or Levant etc) in the post-Ice Age re-population and the dating of the different subgroups is too young. I couldn't say, I'll leave that down to you guys.

P.S. I am well prepared to change my views (and so will professional archaeologists) if we find evidence of genocide such as mass graves during the Bell Beaker period. Until then, it doesn't look likely. I also share the annoyance at the mass media's continual use of Oppenheimer and the obsession with the Basque people when his work does appear out of date.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 09:29:23 PM by Northern Line » Logged
Maliclavelli
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« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2013, 02:14:50 AM »

Of course I completely agree with you, above all about the aDNA we need (but the skeptics, like some your compatriot, is just on the safe side...).
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Maliclavelli


YDNA: R-S12460


MtDNA: K1a1b1e

Dubhthach
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« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2013, 04:23:30 AM »

You are probably better off crossposting this on Anthrogenica where alot of the people working in the likes of R1b-L21 (R1b1a2a1a2c -- which 70% of irishmen are positive for) post.

http://www.anthrogenica.com/forumdisplay.php?49-R1b-General
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Northern Line
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« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2013, 08:25:36 AM »

You are probably better off crossposting this on Anthrogenica where alot of the people working in the likes of R1b-L21 (R1b1a2a1a2c -- which 70% of irishmen are positive for) post.

http://www.anthrogenica.com/forumdisplay.php?49-R1b-General

Thanks. I'll do that now.
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rms2
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« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2013, 05:05:10 PM »

I posted this over at Anthrogenica, but I'll post it here, as well (only slightly modified).

I realize some contrary evidence could turn up tomorrow, but it does seem odd that, of all the Neolithic y-dna results thus far, not a single R1b has turned up. The only Bell Beaker site thus far to produce any y-dna yielded two R1b results (Kromsdorf, Germany, c. 2600 BC).

Here's the Google map of ancient y-dna results in Europe I made based on info from Jean Manco's excellent site, Ancient Western Eurasian DNA:

Ancient European Y-DNA

I tend to think the Neolithic males of Britain were predominantly G2a and I2a, because that is the way the ancient y-dna is trending right now. That could change, obviously, and I think we are due to hear more, one way or the other, very soon.
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