M222 La Tene signature?

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Jean M:
Here's what I added to the Peopling of Europe: Beaker Folk to Celts and Italics since laying hands on Celtic from the West :

The influence of La Tène styles spread quite widely across Gaul, Britain and further afield. Trade, gifts and emulation can account for some of the spread. However history records a series of Celtic migrations between 400 and 200 BC. Celts moved into Northeastern Italy around 400 BC. Since Iron Age Celts were naturally genetically similar to their ancestors, it may prove difficult to distinguish these later waves from earlier ones into Britain and Iberia purely by DNA. However the R1b-U152 haplogroup is concentrated around the Alps, so where it appears in Britain, Greece and Iberia, it may partly reflect La Tène movements.

Though Ireland overall is not swamped with La Tène material, a concentration of it has been found in the northeast of the country starting from c. 300 BC. It is in this same area that the earliest Irish records mention people called Cruithin or Cruithni, apparently meaning British. There has been much debate over their origins, but there is a genetic clue that the La Tène style arrived with them. Y-DNA haplogroup I2b1a (M284) is almost exclusively British and seems to have arisen there among the Celts. It is rare in Ireland, but there is a concentration of it in North-Eastern Ireland. This haplogroup is shared by men of several surnames which are Gaelic in origin, and so cannot reflect gene flow from Britain in modern times. McEvoy and Bradley date its most recent common ancestor in Ireland to about 300 BC. I2b1a appears in McGuinness and McCartan men, who have a common ancestor in Eochaidh, King of the Ulaidh (d.c. 552 AD), who was of the Cruithin. If the Cruithin arrived in 300 BC speaking Brittonic, no trace of it survived to be recorded. The Ulaidh came under heavy pressure from southern tribes, including the Uí Néill, presumed descendants of the fabled 5th-century warlord, Niall of the Nine Hostages. A branch of the Uí Néill took over North-Western Ireland. Nearly 20% of the men in Donegal today carry Y-DNA R1b-M222. It is particularly common among those with certain surnames derived from the Uí Néill, such as O'Doherty, though not the O'Neills themselves. It also appears among the Connachta, supposed descendants of the brothers of Niall and among Lowland Scots. There is even a scattering of M222 in England, France and Germany. The long and complex relationship between the peoples of Ulster and Scotland leaves us with several possible explanations, one of which is that M222 is another La Tène signature, centuries older than Niall.

Mike Walsh:
Quote from: Jean M on July 17, 2010, 06:04:29 AM

... The Ulaidh came under heavy pressure from southern tribes, including the Uí Néill, presumed descendants of the fabled 5th-century warlord, Niall of the Nine Hostages. A branch of the Uí Néill took over North-Western Ireland. Nearly 20% of the men in Donegal today carry Y-DNA R1b-M222. It is particularly common among those with certain surnames derived from the Uí Néill, such as O'Doherty, though not the O'Neills themselves. It also appears among the Connachta, supposed descendants of the brothers of Niall and among Lowland Scots. There is even a scattering of M222 in England, France and Germany. The long and complex relationship between the peoples of Ulster and Scotland leaves us with several possible explanations, one of which is that M222 is another La Tène signature, centuries older than Niall.

Very interesting.  What are the primary points supporting your proposal on M222 being La Tène?

A correlation with I2b1a (M284)?

The distribution of M222 which is concentrated in northeast Ireland but scattered in other places, including Germany, where the La Tène were known to be?

An apparent association with  Uí Néill? Were they known to have La Tène artifacts?  The implication is Uí Néill was a southern tribe that attacked the Ulaidh (men of Ulster).  If so why does that link them La Tène? Do you mean southern Ireland or are you talking about south into the continent? Wasn't Uí Néill Gaelic speaking?  If so, is that a contradiction with a Brittonic speaking La Tène "Cruithe"?

Jean M:
It is all a big puzzle.

As you will know M222 was trumpeted in 2006 as the marker of the descendants of Niall of the Nine Hostages. As I was adding the new idea from McEvoy and Bradley about I2b1a (from the new volume Celtic from the West), I thought I would slip in the Ui Neill story while I was at it.

Scarcely had I done that when I had an email by sheer coincidence from someone who has published on a Scottish M222 family. That led me to the R-M222 Haplogroup Project and the informative web-site of its Group Co-Administrator:  John D. McLaughlin. I began to feel very uneasy. All this Lowland Scots M222 does not fit the picture of the line of Niall.

And yet it is very clear that plenty of people whose ancestors claimed descent from Niall are indeed M222. They were not considered Cruithin. They were Gaelic speakers. (Probably all the La Tene arrivals had turned into Gaelic-speakers by the time we have any records anyway.) However they were living in that part of Ireland that had La Tene material. So were they really 100% Gaelic lads who were bent on pushing the Cruithin into the sea? Or is the story a bit more complex? Why is Niall's mother (in legend) supposed to be British?         


 

alan trowel hands.:
M222 is linked with the north west but la tene is linked to the north east.  There is in my opnion no correlation and even something of a negative correlation between them.  There may be somethng to the idea of a link between la tene and cruithin may be worth furher consideration.  However I do not think the ui neill or connachta were an ethnic group.  It seems most likely to me they were a military or dynastic lineage rather than a people as such. I do not think they were anything to do with the spread of Gaelic in ireland. I suppose the only clue about origin would be where it is found and where pre m222 groups are found. Previous posts by others seem to suggest that both have been noted together in SW Scotland but not in nw Ireland. This is where the damnoni tribe were located. It is interesting that the ulster tales mention fighing the fir domnain who were associated with nw Connaught. I wonder if the ui neill and connachta were somehow derived from them. This is not what the genealogies say but frankly the pre400ad part of the various genealogies cannot remotely be trusted. One thng I think everyone needs to drop is the idea that there were waves, one of which was 'the Gaels' an ethnic term or a term for a distinct wave of invaders like O'Rahilly wrote.  Even the name Gael is not a Gaelic word! It's a borrowing fom British Celtic around the 5th centuryAD and was probably originally an insulting term meaning wild man of the woods or simlar that the welsh used for he Irish raiders who were attacking them. Perhaps the term was carried to Ireland by welsh monks.

Heber:
Jean,

McEvoy and Bradley date the ancestor of M222 to 1,700 bpe and located in  NW Ireland.  "The unique corpus of Irish genealogical records allow the tracing of his putative decendants to the 11th and 12th centuries where they in turn became the founding fathers of many modern Irish surnames."  Frequency of M222 in Donegal (NW Ireland) reach 20%.
M222 corresponds closely to the historic character Niall Noigiallach (Niall of the Nine Hostages) (378-405), founder of the Ui'Neill dynasty, which lasted from the 5thC-15thC for over 1,000 years, until The Flight of the Earls in 1607. He also established the Dal Riada in Western Scotland.
McEvoy and Bradley specifically identify haplogroup Iic as being seperate and associated with NE Ireland and dating to 2,600 bpe. It is an interesting theory and merits further research.
Dr. Anatole Klyosov has estimated the age of M222 (NW Irish) as 1450±160 ybp.




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