The Birth of Britain

Recent studies considering modern and ancient DNA show that about 25-40% of British ancestry is Anglo-Saxon, with a high in East Anglia and gradual decreasing as you move north and west. While the Britons of Roman times look like the Welsh.

Winston Churchill wrote about this, in The Birth of Britain, the first installment of his history of the English-speaking peoples. He mentions that place names in Sussex suggested total replacement, while the West Saxon legal code made provision for the rights of Welshmen.. But he didn’t know how much replacement had occurred. Still, he said “.. we may cherish the hope that somewhere a maiden’s cry for pity, the appear of beauty in distress, the lustful needs of an invading force,would create some bond between victor and vanquished. Thus the blood would be preserved, thus the rigours of subjugation would fade as generations passed away. The complete obliteration of an entire race is repulsive to the human mind. There should at least have been, in default of pity, a hearing for practical advantage or the natural temptations of sex.”

However, being repulsive doesn’t stop something from happening. This time, it didn’t. Perhaps Churchill’s ghost, or his ghost’s ghost, is pleased by this result.

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23 Responses to The Birth of Britain

  1. Charlie says:

    Oh my God, it’s happening again!

    A stroll down some streets in Bradoford suggest total replacement. While Sharia court legal codes make provision for the rights of Dhimmis.

    • Light Night says:

      The English have always been on the leading edge of these things. First the genocide of the Saxons, then parliament, then the Revolution, now the genocide of the English. It’s a neat little circle, really.

  2. IC says:

    Looking at today middle east situation, you can imagine how people migrate back then. You don’t need genocide to get total replacement.

  3. Dale says:

    Can we study Y chromosomes vs. mitochondrial chromosomes to determine whether the mixing of Anglo-Saxon and Celtic ancestries was sex-unbalanced?

  4. People can’t wrap their minds around how total population replacement happens. Why sink your stone axe into the head of a pretty young thing, there seem to be better alternatives. It didn’t happen in Britain at this latter date but those earlier ravagers the Yamnaya of the Bronze Age were some vicious crazy bastards. David Anthony explains how and why the Yamnaya steppe herders were able to depopulate northern Europe of what seemed to be a far more advanced population. His book The Horse, the Wheel, and Language is a hard slog unless pages and pages of horse bone inventories is your thing. His lecture here ttps:// tells you how this first culture to have the horse was able to annihilate the sitting ducks who were stuck in one place because they were farmers who worked one piece of land. It was like a boxing match between one boxer who could move and another that couldn’t. Now why didn’t they become interbred with the locals they conquered? Because they didn’t conquer, the young men went on raiding parties depopulating the countryside ahead of the ever expanding herding culture that was the Yamnaya. This was the Bronze age, it was tough times, you choose a mate that was trained from childhood to work with you in your culture, so everybody from the stable farm culture was slaughtered. David Anthony explains the largest advantage of the horse wasn’t in the surprise attack but in the clean getaway.

    Later times were vastly different times, one side or the other did not have the huge advantage of the horse.

  5. JayMan says:

    Interestingly, the regional genetic differences across Britain correspond to the “Four British Folkways” of Albion’s Seed:

    Genes, Climate, and Even More Maps of the American Nations

    • ohwilleke says:

      The really stunning part of Albion’s Seed is not genetic persistence of founding populations, it is that founding population’s cultural and linguistic impressions continued to dominant regionally even in circumstances where the founding population was vastly diluted by subsequent immigrants who did not share the founding population’s origins.

      • JayMan says:

        Well, the language is to be expected. But most of the cultural factors stem from assortative migration. Many of these areas were considerably changed by subsequent immigrants.

  6. dearieme says:

    This may explain why Lancastrians tend to be much jollier than Yorkshiremen.

  7. Anglo Saxons and Britons were so similar genetically that it is impossible to accurately determine how much Anglo Saxon vs Briton ancestry modern English have. This study had to look at very rare-alleles, which are good to track recent-genealogical ancestry, to estimate Anglo Saxon ancestry. That isn’t the best method and the fact they used that method and shows how identical Anglo Saxon and Briton DNA was.

    All the study tells us is: All British(inclu. Scottish and Welsh) have Anglo Saxon/Germanic ancestry and East-England has the most. Also, that British are something like 100% North European, so there can’t be significant ancestry any non-Gallic Romans or even from most regions of France/Roman Gaul.

  8. Pingback: The Word From The Dark Side, January 22nd, 2016 | SovietMen

  9. spottedtoad says:

    Amusingly enough, I’ve been listening to the audiobook of this the last week (the narrator gets some of the Churchillian attitude, if not accent.) Churchill is pretty explicit from the beginning that he views the “history of the English-speaking peoples” as much about shared ancestry as national boundaries or shared institutions. Of course, given that the savior of Britain (as he already clearly thinks of himself by the time he finishes writing the books) had an American mother, it’s not that surprising, perhaps.

  10. Sean says:

    John R Baker in his 1974 book Race said that the original inhabitants of Britain were like the Welsh. But he noted the amount of red hair in Wales was difficult to explain.

    It seems to me that the remains we have from Roman times might be ethnically untypical, because some people did not get formal burials, while the rulers and their servants did. The Romans might have favoured certain minority tribes of Britain over others and thus the remains we have from Roman grave sites to do genetics analysis of could be misleading as to the wider population of Britain at that time.

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