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BONES TELL STORY OF THAI ORIGIN
Bangkok Post ^ | Sunday November 05, 2006 | ANCHALEE KONGRUT

Posted on 11/04/2006 7:22:03 PM PST by JimSEA

DNA tests on ancient skeletons in the Northeast suggest our ancestors may have migrated to this part of the region long before we first thought.

The tests were conducted by scholars and archaeologists at the Fine Arts Department in a bid to find the origins of Thai people. The team started its work in 2003, using the testing of mitochondrial DNA on skeletons in selected graveyards in Nakhon Ratchasima and groups of living people in China, and some countries in Southeast Asia.

Mitochondria are small energy-producing organelles found in egg cells which, unlike nuclear DNA that is equally inherited from both father and mother, is passed only from a mother to her children.

The result showed genetic similarities in the skeletons and people in China and Southeast Asia, which means migration might have taken place about 3,000 years ago.

''We want to know more about the origin of Thais. We used DNA tests which scientists employ for medical purposes to learn about our history and our origins,'' Rachanie Thosarat, former archaeologist at the department, told a seminar on Friday.

She said the technology has been used widely by foreign archaeologists since 1980s. But local archaeologists applied it for the first time only in recent years.

''We want to know whether a theory which says that our ancestors migrated from China's lower region about 700 years ago is true or not,'' she said.

The researchers extracted mitochondrial DNA samples from the teeth of skeletons in ancient Noen U-Loke and Ban Lum Khao graveyards, near Pimai historical park in Nakhon Ratchasima province.

Almost unknown to the public, compared to the country's popular Ban Chieng archaeological site, the researchers chose the two sites as more than 200 skeletons there were in perfect condition.

Noen U-Loke contained 130 skeletons aged 1,500-2,500 years while Ban Lum Khao site is home to 113 skeletons aged 2,500-3,500 years.

Details of the DNA samples were put in a computer model that contained the DNA of 20 living ethnic people, 10 from countries in Southeast Asia and another 10 from eastern China.

The method constructed the so-called ''Phylogenetic tree'' or ''genetic evolution tree'' that indicates links between ancient skeletons and people in China and Southeast Asian countries, said Prof Samoerchai Poolsuwan, anthropologist from Thammasat University's sociology faculty and also a member of the research team.

''The DNA test confirmed that the genes of the people and the skeletons are close,'' he said.

''In lay terms, you may say that Thai ancestors may have shared the same ancestors from people in China and Southeast Asia.

''You may say that people in this region may share the same origins, and Thais may go back more than 700 years,'' he said.

He said the findings are just a small part of the whole picture and more DNA tests were needed, adding the Fine Arts Department had agreed to use DNA tests at other archaeological sites.


TOPICS: Science
KEYWORDS: dna; godsgravesglyphs; helixmakemineadouble; history; thailand
This is of great interest to me as it settles a long standing friendly arguement between me and a friend in Chiang Mai. He is a Thai educated in forestry and holds the most common Thai belief that their ancestors came from southern China about 700 Years ago. Recent arcaeological evidence points to Thais as having been in the area in which they currently live for some 5,000 years. Certainly the physical atributes of ancient skeletons resemble the current residents (Thais). This is excellent as confirmation of the connection will help in the push for preservation of ancient sites.
1 posted on 11/04/2006 7:22:06 PM PST by JimSEA
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To: blam; SunkenCiv; ASA Vet; angkor; Brian Allen; bsariwat; Central Scrutiniser; Fielding; ...
Possible interest?? Blam's Cheddar Man and this seem to show many people in the world live where their ancestors have lived for thousands of years.
2 posted on 11/04/2006 7:29:01 PM PST by JimSEA
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To: JimSEA

This is really interesting....
I love stuff like this!


3 posted on 11/04/2006 7:29:45 PM PST by LibertyGrrrl (http://www.conservativepunk.com)
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To: JimSEA

I appreciate your concern yet,a nagging thought is
"destination " becomes increasingly important as one
ages. Unless you are a racist where you come from is irrelevant, its where you end up thats important.

Please explain why where a person comes from is so damn important.
Isnt how a person acts more important?


4 posted on 11/04/2006 7:33:47 PM PST by claptrap (optional tag-line under reconsideration)
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To: claptrap
Aren't you interested in world history and the spread of the Human Species? In my instance, I began an interest in archeology when a neighbor in Oracle, Az asked it I wanted to help her do some salvage work for the Univ. of AZ along a gas pipeline. Of course, one of the questions was where did these people come from? When we moved to Southeast Asia part-time, my interest went with me. One big question is where the Ban Chiang culture came from. Here is a very advanced culture seemingly springing up 7,000 years ago where there were hunter / gatherers before. It is like a detective novel.

We are all about the same and our individual efforts define us, not our heritage, however, heritage is the story of mankind.

We carry a lot of cultural baggage and understanding it and other peoples histories accurately seems very important to me.

5 posted on 11/04/2006 7:56:30 PM PST by JimSEA
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To: JimSEA; blam; FairOpinion; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 24Karet; 3AngelaD; ...
Thanks JimSEA.

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6 posted on 11/04/2006 8:14:48 PM PST by SunkenCiv (Dhimmicrati delenda est! https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: AdmSmith; AnalogReigns; caryatid; Celtjew Libertarian; CobaltBlue; concentric circles; ...
Genetic
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7 posted on 11/04/2006 8:21:16 PM PST by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: martin_fierro

Thanks for the ping!


8 posted on 11/04/2006 8:22:49 PM PST by voiceinthewind
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To: JimSEA

I thought this was a Star Trek thread. Sorry.


9 posted on 11/04/2006 9:08:10 PM PST by Harrius Magnus (Not Welcome.)
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To: JimSEA
Good article, thanks for the ping.

My instincts say the people 'flowed' the other way. Thais going north and becoming Chinese. I think Oppenheimer's DNA studies show that type of flow.

In fact, the Northern Chinese are descended from the Southern Chinese who are themselves descended from people in SE Asia, Thailand.(?)

I'm still just astounded by the Cheddar Man story.

10 posted on 11/04/2006 9:42:27 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
Cheddar Man
11 posted on 11/04/2006 9:50:08 PM PST by blam
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To: JimSEA

If you've not been to the Ban Chieng archaeological site you should do so.


12 posted on 11/05/2006 5:20:05 AM PST by ASA Vet (3.03)
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To: JimSEA

"Here is a very advanced culture seemingly springing up 7,000 years ago where there were hunter / gatherers before. It is like a detective novel."

Maybe they figured out agriculture and a few related things 7000 years ago, just like the other people who emerged from being hunter-gatherers.

One of the more-difficult-to-understand (for me) mental fixations of historians and archaeologists is the idea that knowledge has to "move" from one place to another. Middle Eastern people are not exceptionally smart or exceptionally dumb. It is generally recognized that settled agriculture began there several thousand years ago. But then comes the assertion - based on what? A few shards here and there; mostly, I think, a mental prejudice, that sees agriculture spreading out from there, along with alphabets and other inventions. There seems to be a limited capacity for human belief that 58 different cultures, at varying times, all independently invented agriculture, and pottery, and clothmaking, etc., the staples of "advanced" early civilization.

Fortunately, we DO have the fact that agriculture certainly developed completely independently in at least two separate areas: MesoAmerica and the Middle East.

There is no very good reason to believe it did not ALSO independently develop in, say, Western Europe and India and China as well.

I think that there is just a preference for things to trace back to a single origin, which makes everything simpler (and also establishes a "pecking order" among civilizations, which people definitely prefer making, probably for the same reason that people like to root for sports teams even though there's nothing very distinguishable one to the other...Yankees, Red Sox...what's the difference?).


13 posted on 11/06/2006 4:05:11 AM PST by Vicomte13 (The Crown is amused.)
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To: Vicomte13

I agree with your Ideas. It seems likely that we have better knowledge of civilization in the Mideast because studied the area for a longer period of time, because we have the bible as a guide, and because it is a desert and preserves the past well.


14 posted on 11/06/2006 7:59:23 AM PST by JimSEA
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To: JimSEA; blam
I was thinking the same thing, blam. Suppose the migration was from Thailand north, not vice versa? The conventional wisdom seems more reflective of sino-centrism than solid archaeological evidence.

Of course, there is the even more radical idea that the first home of the Thai people is now under water.

15 posted on 11/06/2006 9:00:01 AM PST by colorado tanker
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To: colorado tanker
The Chinese Civilization was evidently quite spectacular and I certainly would not denigrate its accomplishments. However, it tends to obscure other cultures and their place in history. A lot of this is ethnocentric Chinese vs. barbarians. Surprisingly to me, the Indian civilizations have been overlooked in comparison.

At least recently, even Chinese archaeologists have been looking at some "outlying" areas such as the Silk route civilization, the southern Chinese bronze cultures, the southeast (Taiwan) rice growers, etc.

16 posted on 11/06/2006 9:56:18 AM PST by JimSEA
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To: martin_fierro

Thailand?

Well the thai bone is connected to the knee bone.


17 posted on 11/06/2006 9:59:46 AM PST by Tijeras_Slim (Dancing through life like a street mime with tourettes syndrome.)
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To: JimSEA
If you haven't already, sign up for the ping list and you'll see a lot posted about those new developments in China archeology. A lot of fascinating stuff going on.
18 posted on 11/06/2006 10:02:50 AM PST by colorado tanker
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To: colorado tanker
"Of course, there is the even more radical idea that the first home of the Thai people is now under water."

Sundaland (GGG)

"The cradle of human civilization may well have been the prehistoric lowlands of the Southeast Asian peninsula, rather than the Middle East. Since those lowlands ‘sank’ beneath the seas thousands of years ago (actually drowned by rising sea levels), humanity has remained unaware of their possible significance up through the early 21st century. :

19 posted on 11/06/2006 10:27:44 AM PST by blam
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To: blam
Well, the legends of the Elves not only had the Elves originating in the East, by the waters of Cuivienen (which would be a lake sitting about where the Tarim Basin sits today, or maybe Lake Baikal), but also have Mortal Men originating by the waters of the far Eastern Sea (i.e.: China, Southeast Asia) and following the Elves along the Great Western Road across the steppes.

This would mean that Mortal Men entered into the ken of the Elves "East of Eden", so to speak.
20 posted on 11/06/2006 10:54:45 AM PST by Vicomte13 (The Crown is amused.)
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To: Vicomte13; JimSEA

Eden In The East

Excellent book that was recommended to me by FReeper JimSEA

21 posted on 11/06/2006 11:27:17 AM PST by blam
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To: blam

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22 posted on 10/06/2009 7:52:50 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: JimSEA; SunkenCiv
"Possible interest?? Blam's Cheddar Man and this seem to show many people in the world live where their ancestors have lived for thousands of years."

An update:

I've had the DNA of my family checked and my father's mother (Mrs Smith) has the same mtDNA as 9,000 year old Cheddar Man, mtDNA U5a. (See here.) U5a and 'V' are well represented amongst the Sami (Laplanders - rein deer herders) of the far north. My mtDNA is 'V'.

23 posted on 10/06/2009 9:23:44 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

The origin of ties... probably French. ;’)


24 posted on 10/07/2009 2:18:17 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: SunkenCiv
"The origin of ties... probably French. ;’)"

Oh? Never mind...I thought we were talking about Thai's.

25 posted on 10/07/2009 2:22:15 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

Hey, at least no one brought up the Thai master.


26 posted on 10/07/2009 3:38:20 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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