Brit-Am Anthropology and DNA Update.

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Ten out of the Twelve Tribes of Israel were exiled and lost their identity. Their descendants are now to be found amongst Western Peoples. This is proven from the Bible, Talmud, and Rabbinical Sources as well as from Secular Studies in Ancient History, Archaeology, Mythology, Linguistics, and related fields. It would be expected that DNA studies also reflect ancestral links between the Gentile (in the religious sense) Peoples in question and their Jewish kinfolk. DNA should also show that the Israelite Nations of Judah and the Ten Tribes may be traced back to the Middle East Area of Ancient Israel. In the notes, comments, and articles listed below we give an inkling of the issues involved and the complexity of the subject. DNA (especially mtDNA) is determined by a combination of both environment and heredity. To what proportion of either determinant may characteristics at a particular stage be attributed is not known. Nevertheless, even relying only on what has been published and accepting conventional explanations, valid ancestral links between the Israelite Nations and the area of Ancient Israel may be shown to exist. This in itself may not proof anything but it does add to the general plausibility of what Brit-Am believes in.

Brit-Am Anthropology and DNA Update
4 January 2011, 8 Tevet 5772

1. Scottish Surnames:
Scotland's DNA: Land of the Britons by Alistair Moffat.
3. Multiple origins of Russian mtDNA.


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1. Scottish Surnames:
Scotland's DNA: Land of the Britons

by Alistair Moffat
Published on Tuesday 27 December 2011 12:05

Surnames tell stories. When they began to be generally adopted around the 16th century, they could be unhelpfully simple. Scotland's second most common surname is Brown (behind Smith) and it is nothing more than a nickname, probably relating to colouring. Reid is 12th in the Scottish Top 20 and it is even more straightforward, meaning red. Since 13 per cent of all Scots have a variant of red hair, its popularity should surprise no-one. Little, Young, White, Black and many other nickname surnames occur all over Scotland but their application to individuals is, sadly, random.

More unusual Scottish names can be tantalising; Galbraiths, for example, are especially so. Behind its meaning lies a half-forgotten struggle in Scotland's early history. Galbraith derives from 'Gall Bretnach' and it means Stranger Briton.

The ancient kingdom of Strathclyde survived into the early middle ages and its capital stronghold, Dumbarton Rock, echoes that surname. It means the Fortress of the Britons, or the Brets. They spoke dialects of Old Welsh, not Gaelic or early English, and recent scholarship has traced the frontiers of this vanished state.

At the head of Loch Lomond in Glen Falloch stands a great boulder, a landmark left as the glaciers rumbled down Ben Lomond at the end of the last ice age. It is called the Clach nam Breatainn, the Stone of the Britons, and it marked the northern marches of the kingdom of Strathclyde. Eventually, Gaelic-speaking surnames such as the MacFarlanes, Campbells, MacGregors and Colquhouns gradually gained territory around the great loch, perhaps around the year 1,000AD. The Galbraiths, the Stranger Britons ' surely a name conferred by Gaels, appear to have resisted. Their ancestral stronghold was on an island, Inchgalbraith, off the western shores of Loch Lomond. 'Strangers' were probably people who did not speak Gaelic and the Galbraiths may have continued to speak Old Welsh as a sea of Gaelic lapped around their island.

This cultural and linguistic clash along one of Scotland's lost frontiers is only dimly remembered and hedged around by the subjunctive. But DNA testing would shed a bright light. Do Galbraiths carry a different, perhaps older marker than, say, the Colquhouns or the MacFarlanes? Or did populations mix? Or were the incoming Gaelic speakers a small military elite who decapitated a native aristocracy? In any event, Galbraiths have not strayed far. Over 5 per cent of all those with this very old name live in North Lanarkshire.

When Gael and Briton contended along the shores of Loch Lomond in the early middle ages, Scotland spoke many languages and each is remembered by surnames. Opposing the lords of Inchgalbraith were men who knew each other by patronyms, calling themselves by their fathers' names. Holding land around Arrochar, the MacFarlanes took their name from a semi-mythic figure called Parlan. In common with Gaelic usage, the first letter of his name is aspirated to form a ph or f sound. The sons of Parlan fought at Flodden in 1513 and as part of a Highland division, they knocked down and scattered an English battalion in the first phase of that fateful battle. Very little MacFarlane DNA has been tested and the origins of the unusually named Parlan may not necessarily be Celtic.

MacDonalds have a great deal more certainty. Believing that they are descended from Somerled, the first Lord of the Isles, many carry the S200 DNA marker. All of their current chiefs have it, as well as 24 per cent of all men called MacDonald. But more DNA testing may well place this rare marker in Norway ' if only the data were available. And there is a whisper that S200 may be very ancient indeed.

The Norse Clan MacLeod may seem a fairly common surname, but their marker is also rare. Tradition holds that they are the descendants of their name-father, Leod or Ljot, Almost half of all MacLeod men carry unusual DNA. S68+ links to Orkney and from there to Norway where only 1 per cent of men have it. But what is striking is the long-lasting fidelity of MacLeod wives. The 47 per cent of men who carry the S68+ marker descend from a single individual, possibly Leod himself. That means that the 10,000 Scotsmen who carry it are very closely related. Of the remaining 53 per cent there are only nine other lineages present ' which means that MacLeod men almost always married women who were unwaveringly faithful to them!

The story of one name in Scotland is very clear and very well documented ' but DNA can take it much further. Walter fitzAlan came to Scotland around 1136. His ancestors hailed from Brittany and when William the Conqueror mustered his invading army in 1066, they joined it. Walter fitzAlan came north and his family became Stewards of Scotland in the 12th century. Their royal role eventually became their surname, and it in turn became royal. Around 16 per cent of all Scottish men with the surname Stewart carry S310, the same marker as direct and undoubted descendants of James V and James VI and I. It is a sub-type of the widespread Celtic marker labelled S145.

Now comes a fascinating twist in a familiar story. In Brittany, the land of Walter the Steward's ancestors, there exists a very high proportion of men with the S145 marker, as many as in south-west England, Celtic Cornwall and Devon and far more than in the rest of western Europe. There is a historical reason for this quirk. Brittany literally means Little Britain, a name acquired between 400AD and 600AD, the period when Saxons raiders became invaders and settlers. As the Roman Empire in Britain and Western Europe collapsed, they drove out large numbers of native British and they crossed the English Channel to escape and found communities in Brittany. Several place-names such as Bretteville recall the refugees. It may well be, on the evidence of DNA, that the Stewart dynasty of Scotland and of Great Britain and Ireland actually originated in the south or south-west of England and not on the western edges of Normandy. One scion of a famous Scottish aristocratic family who is definitely descended in the Stewart line has had his DNA tested recently and more may well be revealed.

The markers of the likes of Sinclairs, Bruces, Frasers, Menzies, Corbetts, Colvilles, Kinnears and others show that their ancestors were not in fact Norsemen but native Frenchmen. Oh dear.

Other results simply surprise, and on a personal level. For someone who played rugby for Kelso in the Border League, fixtures against Langholm were not to be taken lightly. Tough and uncompromising, their forwards hunted in a pack and often ground out a good result. In my playing days half the Langholm pack seemed to be called Beattie ' an apposite surname, and I always assumed that it must be native to the Borders, or Dumfriesshire at a stretch. In fact the story starts in Ireland, in Leinster in the south-east. The major descent group of the Beatties carry the marker S169. Known as the Irish Sea Type, it traces descent from the Kings of Leinster who were originally the chiefs of the Lagin Clans. Such high-born beginnings do not dull the memories of bruises at the hands and feet of Langholm Beatties. But the presence of these uncompromising men might be a memory of a migration from Ireland. Only more testing will tell.

From: Merlin Houzet <>

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Evolutionary Leftovers in DNA' Not So, Says New Study.

3. Multiple origins of Russian mtDNA

The genetic distances from the Russians to the Europeanlanguage groups indicate that the gene pool of present-day Russians bears the influence of Slavic, Baltic,Finno-Ugric and, to a lesser extent, Germanic groups, aswell as Iranian and Turkic groups.
The results of this study strongly suggest that the impact of the pre-Slavic (Finno-Ugric) population on the East European Plain is the most important factor for the northward and southward differentiation of the present-day Russian gene pool. This explanation supports the view proposing the genetic influence of Finno-Ugrians on the formation of the northern regions of Russia, which was inferred from mtDNA marker studies of some Russian populations (Grzybowski et al., 2007) and Y-chromosome analysis (Balanovsky et al., 2008).
Being quite distant from the Finno-Ugric group, the Southern Russians consequently differ from the Northern Russians in their closeness to the Germanic group. This difference indicates that the Germanic people played a significant role in the development of the southern, but not the northern segment of the Russian gene pool. In general, the Germanic influence on the formation of the Russians is not as obvious as the impact of the Slavic, Baltic, and Finno-Ugric people. However, strong interactions between the Germanic and Slavic tribes have been found in archeological materials dating from the mid-first millennium B.C. to the early first millennium A.D. These interactions were the strongest on the northern coast of the Black Sea, in the area of the multiethnic Chernyakhov archeological culture (second to fifth centuries A.D.). In the second half of the first millennium A.D., the descendants of this culture colonized the southern regions of the historical Russian area (Sedov, 1994, 1995). However, there is no evidence in the historical literature of the interaction between the Germanic tribes and the Slavs (and later, the Russians) after the Slavic colonization of the East European Plain. Therefore, the Germanic influence could not have occurred after the early part of the first millennium A.D., which was before the eastward Slavic migration (Sedov, 1994, 1995). Apparently, the impact of the Germanic people on the Chernyakhov Slavs affected the gene pool of modern Southern Russians, consequently differentiating them from the Northern Russians (Fig. 6).


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