Skip to comments.Crusaders 'Left Genetic Legacy'
Posted on 03/27/2008 6:29:52 PM PDT by blam
Crusaders 'left genetic legacy'
The genetic signature can be traced to Europe
Scientists have detected the faint genetic traces left by medieval crusaders in the Middle East. The team says it found a particular DNA signature which recently appeared in Lebanon and is probably linked to the crusades.
The finding comes from the Genographic Project, a major effort to track human migrations through DNA.
Details of the research have been published in the American Journal of Human Genetics.
The researchers found that some Christian men in Lebanon carry a DNA signature hailing from Western Europe.
The scientists also found that Lebanese Muslim men were more likely than Christians to carry a particular genetic signature. But this one is linked to expansions from the Arabian Peninsula which brought Islam to the area in the 7th and 8th Centuries.
But they emphasise that the differences between the two communities are minor, and that Christians and Muslim Arabs in Lebanon overwhelmingly share a common heritage.
The legacy of the Muslim expansion has been demonstrated in other studies which looked at the genetics of Middle Eastern and North African populations. But signs of recent European migration to the region is more unusual.
The study focused on the Y, or male, chromosome, a package of genetic material carried only by men that is passed down from father to son more or less unchanged, just like a surname.
But over many generations, the chromosome accumulates small changes, or copying errors, in its DNA sequence.
So Y chromosomes can be classified into different groups (called haplogroups) which, to some extent, reflect a person's geographical ancestry.
The team analysed the Y chromosomes of 926 Lebanese males and found that patterns of male genetic variation in Lebanon fell more along religious lines than along geographical lines.
A genetic signature on the male chromosome called WES1, which is usually only found in European populations, was found among the Lebanese men included in the study.
Science and history
"It seems to have come in from Europe and is found mostly in the Christian population," said Dr Spencer Wells, director of the Genographic Project.
"This is odd because typically we don't see this sort of stratification by religion when we are looking at the relative proportions of these lineages - and particularly immigration events."
He told BBC News: "Looking at the same data set, we saw a similar enrichment of lineages coming in from the Arabian Peninsula in the Muslim population which we didn't see [as often] in the Christian population."
Lebanese Muslim men were found to have high frequencies of a Y chromosome grouping known as J1. This is typical of populations originating from the Arabian Peninsula, who were involved in the Muslim expansion.
"The goal of the study was to put some science to the history of this country - which is very rich," said Pierre Zalloua, a co-author on the paper, from the Lebanese American University in Beirut.
He added: "To have these great civilisations - with the Islamic expansion and the migration from Europe - coming to Lebanon, leaving not only their genes but also some of their culture and way of life, it can only make us feel richer."
The Genographic Project was launched by National Geographic in 2005 to help piece together a picture of how the Earth was colonised.
The consortium has sold 250,000 DNA test kits and regional centres have taken samples of genetic material from 31,000 indigeous people.
According to the RLDS genealogy web site, I’m descended from the bog man.
Bog man — you are so funny.
I have DYS392-13.
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Thanks,...I may have to check my DNA...
A King of Norway, Harald Hardrade (hard to “read”) actually served in the Vangarian guard before being called back to Norway to be King.
No, I’m serial. I just checked my data base but I can’t find his name. He only has one and he died about the time that the Romans invaded and it said he was sacrificed by his people and thrown into the bog to keep the Romans away. I guess that didn’t work out for him but he did manage to reproduce first.
Oh for heaven’s sake. hmmm
Only if it’s on a blue dress!
Mine is 100 proof.
How much did it cost.. if anything to get tested?
I’m curious about having it done myself.
At the site in post #5:
$107.50 for yDNA(male) and $107.50 for mtDNA(female). So, total = $215.00.
Harald Hardrada invaded England in 1066 and was killed at the battle of Stamford Bridge near York on Sept. 25, 1066. He was supported by Earl Tostig, the brother of King Harold II of England.
When the three lords met before the battle King Harold II of England promised to give northumbria to Earl Tostig if he would recognize Harold as King of all England.
Earl Tostig asked “And what of my cousin King Harald Hardrade of Norway, who has fought so hard on my behalf?”
“Of him the King Harold II has said, he shall gain of England SIX FEET OF EARTH; or that much more that he is taller than other men.”
As you mentioned King Harald Hardrade died in the battle (arrow in the throat); and he got his six feet (or more) of English soil; but only for awhile before they exhumed his body and buried it again in Norway.
“Did they trace you back to anybody of significance?”
Every last one of my ancestors was pretty significant to me :)
When you think of it, everyone traces there existence to heroic survivors.
According to Snorre Sturlason the Icelandic historian and other accounts a young man named Rolf the Granger was on trial for murder, but because his family knew the family of the Queen he was granted exile instead of death. He and some young rowdies settled in the north of France, a region that was thereafter called Normandy or ‘land of the Northmen’.
In the great tradition of Gallic capitulation the King of France gave him title to Normandy in exchange for recognizing him as King of all France.
The Normans spawned such a vibrant and warlike people that they soon ruled England, Sicily, southern Italy, and the Crusader kingdom of Antioch (one of the major metropolises of the ancient world) and twice came within one battle of ruling Byzantium (the major Empire of its day).