I don’t need to forgive my enemies.

David Reich says that around 4500 years ago, the existing Y-chromosomes in Iberia were almost entirely replaced. “The collision of these two populations was not friendly; instead, the men who arrived almost completely pushed out the local men.”  Spanish scientist Íñigo Olalde said that after the transition. populations had “40% of their genetic information and 100% of their Y chromosomes from the migrants.”

Which is considerably more drastic than  what happened when the Spanish and Portuguese conquered and settled Latin America – even though that was aided by catastrophic new diseases.  Apparently some of the Iberians ended up speaking Indo-European languages  while others did not.  We’ve seen other examples of male mediated-conquests, and language acquisition can go either way: Melanesians conquered Fiji, largely replacing  the  Y chromosomes, without replacing the language.  In Vanuatua, multiple waves of invasion almost completely replaced the whoe genome while preserving Polynesian.  But the Spanish and Portuguese imposed their languages, as did Aryans in India, and fairly small numbers of Turks and Magyars.


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135 Responses to I don’t need to forgive my enemies.

  1. benespen says:

    Because you are planning on replacing them?

  2. Coagulopath says:

    Language turnover doesn’t necessarily indicate violent population replacement, or vice versa. The Cornish language quietly died out in the British Isles in the 18th century, without anyone obviously suppressing it.

    And although the Spanish burned all the Aztec codices and made speaking Mayan/Nahuatl a capital crime, those languages still have millions of speakers today.

    • syonredux says:

      “Language turnover doesn’t necessarily indicate violent population replacement, or vice versa. The Cornish language quietly died out in the British Isles in the 18th century, without anyone obviously suppressing it.”

      Would have been pretty difficult to get ahead in England as a monolingual Cornish speaker….

      • owentt says:

        It’s impossible to get ahead in Mexico as a monolingual Nahuatl speaker. Has been for 400 years. And yet Nahuatl persists as the primary L1 for five million people.

        • syonredux says:

          “It’s impossible to get ahead in Mexico as a monolingual Nahuatl speaker. Has been for 400 years. And yet Nahuatl persists as the primary L1 for five million people.”

          Bit apples to oranges, Cornish vs Nahuatl, England vs Spain….

          England is significantly smaller than Mexico……

          And the Spanish Conquest actually helped spread Nahuatl as a lingua franca in Mexico….

          And the spread of English in the British Isles began approx 1.500 years ago….whereas the Spanish Conquest goes back only about 500 years…..One-third the time….

    • Anonymous says:

      The initial replacement of Celtic languages with Germanic languages in (what became) England was quite violent. This was just a 1500 year delayed consequence.

    • Misdreavus says:

      The Spaniards never made speaking Nahuatl or Mayan (any language) a capital crime. For well over a century, Nahuatl was the official language of New Spain. Literary Nahuatl (e.g. the Florentine Codex) came into existence for the first time under Spanish colonial rule.

      What on earth are you talking about?

      • Coagulopath says:

        Yes, Spain endorsed Nahuatl for a time, but In 1696 Charles II issued a decree banning the use of languages other than Spanish.


        This was reinforced in later edicts. The Real Cedula of 1770 contains an explicit goal of extinguishing the native languages.

        I cannot find a historical source indicating that there was capital punishment for speaking Nahuatl. I first heard this claim on a blog and didn’t investigate further. It probably isn’t true.

        • Anonymous says:

          In the Real Cedula of 1770 Charles III did mandatory the Spanish language AT SCHOOL. Simultaneously, the priests ceased to be required to know the native languages to obtain appointments. The purpose, in the long term, was a monolingual population in Spanish, but at the time of independence less than half of the population spoke Spanish.

    • epoch2013 says:

      No, but language turnover plus Y-DNA turnover is a different story.

      • Emilia says:

        It seems that in places outside Europe where European men have imposed their Y chromosomes to a significant extent – at least in modern times – language turnover has almost always followed. The most well-known example is of course Latin America. Other instances include, for instance, the “Coloured” in South Africa, who are mixed race but speak Afrikaans. At the very lease, populations with “superimposed” European Y chromosomes speak a “creole,” like the inhabitants of Cape Verde (Portuguese men+ African women), but not a native language.

  3. Rosenmops says:

    Something about this sort of invasion makes my blood run cold. It also bothers me to see male immigrants in the West with white women. I am female and old, so I’m not competing for these white females or immigrant males myself. But such relationships seem wrong. When I see such a couple, I have to turn away.

    Perhaps I worry because these invaders immigrants will be competition for my sons and grandsons, and fear these barbaric foreigners will get their hands on my daughters and granddaughters.

    I’m not sure if this sort of feeling is based purely on instinct, or on the knowledge that, at least in some cases, marrying someone from a very different culture might end badly. I’ve heard cases of the man taking the children and going back to Saudi Arabia, or Japan, and the mother has no legal way to get her children back.

    “International child abductions are difficult and complex situations. Unfortunately, they are not uncommon. Every year, hundreds of Canadian children are wrongfully taken from Canada or held in another country by abducting parents”

    • JayMan says:

      It also bothers me to see male immigrants in the West with white women. I am female and old, so I’m not competing for these white females or immigrant males myself. But such relationships seem wrong. When I see such a couple, I have to turn away.

      Should I tell her, or should one of you?


      • Phille says:

        Greg doesn’t believe in ethnic genetic interest. You know, math.

        • Abraham Lincoln says:

          There is math and there is instinct. One has been diligently refined over many hundreds of years by some of the best minds man has had to offer. The other has been for several million years mercilessly forged into our very blood, sinew, and bone marrow.

          When one disagrees with the other, which will take precedence?

          • gcochran9 says:

            Give me a break. If there was a baked-in, natural biological tendency to focus your aid on people from the same ethnic group, people would all do that. You wouldn’t have to argue them into it, and it would be hard to argue them out of it.

            That isn’t what we see.

            • Rosenmops says:

              “Give me a break. If there was a baked-in, natural biological tendency to focus your aid on people from the same ethnic group, people would all do that. You wouldn’t have to argue them into it, and it would be hard to argue them out of it.

              That isn’t what we see.”

              But we do see quite a lot of it in the world. Just not in the West for the last 40 or 50 years.

              • J says:

                Greg gave a few examples of “race-traitors”. The Tlaxcala people and other joining Hernan Cortes forces. Greek mercenaries fighting for the Persians against Hellas. G. Soros volunteering to do the Hungarian Nazis’ dirty work and enjoying it. Et cetera.

              • gcochran9 says:

                Far more widespread than that.

              • A good example is the Finnish war. Georg Magnus Sprengtporten, a Swede, betrayed his country to help Russia conquer Finland. There, his new colleagues included Dutch general Jan Pieter van Suchtelen and several Baltic Germans, none of whom let their Germanic-ness stop them from fighting for Slavic Russia against Germanic Sweden.


              • Jim says:

                During the time of the Roman Empire it was common for some Germanic tribes to wage war against other tribes for the purpose of acquiring captives to be sold to the Romans as slaves. Just like black Africans selling black slaves to Arabs and Europeans.

              • Dividualist says:

                @J or Vercingetorix and Caesar racing who can get more Gaul tribes on their side. I think there is such a thing as natural xenophobic instincts, but there is also this thing that that tribe down the road has been my traditional enemy for 100 years and I hate their guts, but these Romans, the new kids on the block have never harmed me and they are offering me to kill them together and split up the loot, not a bad deal… Vercingetorix tried to invent a Gaul nation, because he was a hostage in Rome and learn there that nations exist. That is, that tribes who speak the same language can cooperate strongly against external enemies. It was a mind-blowingly new idea for Gauls.

                On the other hand, I think that race-treason got slowly out of the gene pool because those who had less of it tended to conquer those who had more of it. Peter Turchin gets this right – whoever cooperates better and does not infight tends to win. Nations defeat tribes. Hence people who have nationalist, as opposed to tribal instincts, tend to get more descendants.

            • JP says:

              There’s pretty clearly a natural, baked in xenophobia, but it’s just as intense for genetically similar neighboring rivals as for genetically distant. Population-level physical differences are I suppose just an obvious sign that someone if from a different tribe, which would have almost always meant a potential foe back in the day. I imagine animosity between northern Irish Protestants and Catholics (or Greek’s and “Turks”/Anatolians) was every bit as fierce as animosity between populations in the Jim Crow south. Genetic distance is sometimes associated with conflict, but not always. Patterns in prison gangs are interesting though.

              • Coagulopath says:

                There’s probably some kind of general outgroup phobia present in humans. But that needn’t fall neatly on ethnic lines.

              • albatross says:

                For most of history, most people weren’t ever going to see anyone of another race, so it’s hard to see how an instinct for sticking to your own race could have evolved. I mean, if you did see someone of another race, probably it was bad news–an invading army or pirate raid or something. But 99.9% of your interactions were with people who had been born within a few hundred miles of where you lived.

                Now, figuring out who was in your tribe vs the neighboring tribe, that mattered. But you were all like third cousins or something, so clothing and tattoos and such had to give you your us/them markers.

              • Bob says:

                The fact that animosity between more closely related groups can be just as great or even greater wouldn’t be inconsistent with a tendency for xenophobia towards less related groups. People use heuristics, and the same heuristics may be involved in identifying non-relatives, whether they’re from the same ethnic group or exotic foreign groups. A very foreign appearance may not be a signal of degree of less relatedness, but simply a much stronger and more reliable signal.

              • gcochran9 says:

                ” wouldn’t be in consistent” : it is inconsistent. This is a stupid idea. Please tell me how the Gauls all cooperated against the Romans, or the Greeks against … anyone.
                One of those ever-popular hypotheses that is contradicted by everything that has ever happened in the history of the world.

                How this particular bee got up your butt is a mystery, but not an interesting one.

            • Natural selection is not going to favor a baked-in biological tendency to focus aid on people from the same ethnic group, regardless of the broader social context. In this respect, ethnic groups are different from families. But natural selection might – might – favor a tendency to create social contexts, norms, and institutions that reward ethnocentrism, i.e. not spontaneous individual altruism but socially enforced altruism toward fellow ethnics.

            • Oedipus Bayezid XIII says:

              True, but what about fratricide, patricide? Not common of course, but it’s noted in many mythologies and plenty ambitous kings and emperors practiced it. Is it an anomaly because the stakes are unusually high?

              • TB says:

                Re fratricide, who is the biggest competitor for your own children’s resources? The closer someone is, the stiffer the competition. Patricide means no new brothers.

            • Abraham Lincoln says:

              No one said anything about a baked-in, natural biological tendency to “focus aid”. That sort of thing, presumably on an ongoing basis, is very costly (to the actor) indeed.

              Or are you strawmanning the notion that there might (“might”) be a baked-in, natural biological tendency to kill, beat up, and/or brusquely deport trespassers/strangers/foreigners? It’s pretty inexpensive to put a well-placed spear through an unfortunately placed heart.

              So tell me, kindly: am I a monkey’s uncle, or is that what we see?

              • Bob says:

                Given Greg’s knowledge of and interest in military history, I doubt he denies any natural biological tendency to beat up and kill strangers and foreigners. If I’m not mistaken, he’s long been a proponent of the beat up and kill strangers and foreigners theory of history against the peaceful contact and cultural diffusionist views of the anthropologists, long before confirmation by recent genetic findings.

                I think the main issue here is the proper understanding of ethnic group in this context. If you examine history and look at the geography of paternal vs. maternal haplogroups, it’s clear that ethnic groups originate as patrilineal clans or perhaps alliances of patrilineal clans that dominate a territory and monopolize the women on the territory. The men are members of the same paternal lineages and clans and closely related, while the women are, to put it crudely, spoils and resources to be monopolized for the clan that can be obtained through conquest and expansion of territory. With paternal clans in place and closely related men dominating territory and access to women on that territory, kin selection can operate. This seems to have been the foundation and origin of ethnic groups, and the basic template that people have inherited today, even as in many places patrilineal clans have been destroyed and societies have scaled way beyond kin groups. In the world of patrilineal clans, clans – groups of related males – fight non kin men for territory and women. There is great hostility towards foreign men and mate guarding against encroachment by foreign men. People today have inherited these instincts, which are naturally generally stronger in men than in women, and they likely explain various visceral reactions people tend to have.

                Ethnic groups as patrilineal clans of closely related males are different from ethnic groups consisting of mostly anonymous, not closely related members. In the former, kin selection can operate and probably explains the instincts that persist today and that are more generalized in their expression.

              • Bob says:

                You don’t think xenophobia is a common reaction or view, or do you disagree that its modern expression may derive from our evolutionary history when patrilineal clans and kin selection were more prominent?

              • Cesarani fan says:

                Greg’s trenchant, and largely incoherent, view on the rationality of ethnic genetic interests vis a vis conflict is a tell of his own personal biases. He’s not going to promote any line of reasoning, however correct it may be, that disavows his own genetic interests. Why would he? I’m sure his son reads this.

                Because any argument based on ethnic genetic interests isn’t good for Greg Cochran’s interests. Hasn’t been so for about, oh, 20 years or so now.

              • gcochran9 says:

                There’s no way it can work, not does the world look as if anything of the sort exists. I wonder what crap hypothesis about ‘ my interests’ is floating around in your diseased brain.

            • epoch2013 says:

              “That isn’t what we see.”

              We do see tribal preference all over the world. It is what shapes the Middle-East and Africa.

        • Anon says:

          What does this have to do with “ethnic genetic interests”? Rosenmops was clearly just expressing a visceral disgust reaction toward miscegnation / invasion by foreigners, and you don’t need anything as stilted as “ethnic genetic interests” to explain a preference for living in a place where the people around you 1) look like you and 2) share cultural values with you. You might even be so bigoted as to wish for a better mating pool for your children and grandchildren than Arabs and Somalians. To act as if this is a made up or even new preference is idiotic.

          “Ethnic genetic interests ” seems like a poorly thought out and convoluted way of rationalizing and explaining these preferences.

          • Rosenmops says:

            ” You might even be so bigoted as to wish for a better mating pool for your children and grandchildren than Arabs and Somalians. To act as if this is a made up or even new preference is idiotic.”

            Just thinking of my daughter or granddaughter getting involved with an Arab or Somali ffills me with anxiety. I wish things were the way they were when I was young, when Canada was more or less a mono-culture. I never thought about people of other races. I hardly new that Islam existed. If there was just a small amount of immigration, the immigrants would become assimilated. But Canada has massive amounts of immigration.

            II am brought into contact with people of other races for my work, and I don’t have any animosity towards them in that context.

            • Anonymous says:

              Arabs are white, you’re delusional.

              • Alex says:


                You are being willfully obtuse, and discomfort with immigration is not just about race, as every ethnic conflict between people with the same skin color or even religion can attest.

              • Anonymous says:


                Conflict can happen for all sorts of reasons apart from race, but “miscegnation” was specifically mentioned, which is obviously purely racial term.

              • Rosenmops says:

                None of the Arabs I have seen are white.

          • Bob says:

            There’s nothing unusual about people coming up with hypotheses like “ethnic genetic interests” to try to explain this phenomenon since this sort of visceral reaction is not uncommon and is directed towards people as you note resemble oneself less and behave more differently than one does. It is not some arbitrary preference, but follows a pattern that tracks ethnic difference and distance.

            Greg notes that people have to be incentivized or forced into ethnic nepotism, but it’s also the case that people have to be incentivized or forced into avoiding expressing antipathy towards other ethnic groups. People lose their jobs and get socially ostracized today if they express such antipathy. That’s why people feel comfortable expressing their feelings online and avoid doing so in real

            So the phenomenon and its ethnic dimension remain to be explained. The “ethnic genetic interests” and other group selectionist hypotheses apparently fail to do so, so some other explanation is needed. Perhaps it derives from a past when kin selection was stronger, and instincts from that past are generalized. Or perhaps it has to do with different populations having varying disease burdens, ecologies, and resistances, and the visceral reactions and antipathy people have is a defensive instinct against novel diseases that they may not have immunities for.

      • et.cetera says:


        • Abraham Lincoln says:

          Unsurprisingly, men of foreign bloodlines are not on your side.

          • et.cetera says:

            I will echo Garr’s comment since I was asking the same thing in fewer words. I don’t get what jayman was getting at, yet he worded that reply as if everyone knows what he meant.

            • Anonymous says:

              He has a white wife and likes to rub it in the face of the stormfronters.

              • Toddy Cat says:

                Well, seeing as how white women are the least likely to marry outside their race (much propaganda to the contrary notwithstanding), I suppose it is something of an accomplishment…

      • Garr says:

        She said she’s bothered. You deny that she’s bothered? Do you think that she’s lying about being bothered or that she really thinks she’s bothered but isn’t in fact bothered?

        • Rosenmop says:

          Garr, I wish I could go back to not being bothered. I wasn’t bothered when I was younger–I never really thought about it. But things weren’t very enriched in my town a few years ago. However it is looking exceptionally vibrant, presently.

      • Rosenmop says:

        JayMan–gloating doesn’t become you.

    • Bob says:

      W.D. Hamilton argued that this is an instinct genetic in origin. He suggests that it goes back to our ancient past, presumably when kin selection was much stronger:


      Hamilton is an unabashed, no-fig-leaf naturist. He believes that genetics, not nurture, accounts for a large and important range of human behaviour — from racism and xenophobia to differences in intellectual abilities between men and women — and that only by admitting and understanding this, only by casting aside hypocrisy on the matter, can fundamental human problems be tackled. As an example, he argues that a basic cause (emphatically not a justification) of racism — and, particularly, of ethnically motivated genocide — is a differential birth rate between groups. And, yes, he does extend this to the Nazi extermination of Jews…

      I [Hamilton] suggested it might be useful for us to discuss the psychology of population situations and to give special attention to those where closely placed or intermixed distinct groups had strikingly different rates of increase. In particular, it might be useful to consider what this might do to competitive birth rates and aggressive instincts connected with population perceptions–in fact, also with the inception of wars. There was silence as I stopped. I’d wanted to explain my thought as far as I could in words that didn’t bring in my pet and as yet little accepted views about the importance of genetical kinship for human altruism and aggression. It had seemed to me that my case for the interest of this topic could be made for present purposes without that and based on known historical instances by themselves.

      The silence that came surprised and unsettled me, so I added something about every one having pride in his or her family and, perhaps not wanting to see descendants lost in a sea of strangers…

      In an effort to be more explicit and to be taken more seriously, I then exposed some corner of my actual work, saying something about how we were all expected, as a result of population genetical processes–natural selection in fact–to have psychological biases that wouldn’t necessarily be easily visible on the surface but whose reality would come to the fore in situations where these rapid changes in a population’s composition were imminent. There was a matter of within- and between-group variances involved here, this applying to the very genes that made us. It wasn’t necessary to such ideas, I added, that shortages of land or whatever would be apparent right when divisive psychology took effect; it would be in this nature of the group psychology to anticipate what might be about to happen. [. . .] If we really wanted to understand why population is a difficult issue to discuss and to do anything about it in the world, I continued [. . .], it is very essential that we understand the evolutionary forces that have moulded reproductive and territorial psychology in humans–the features must be old, of course, started doubtless mainly in our Old Stone Age past. If we wanted to recommend policies to affect population trends in any direction today, we perhaps needed to discuss first the underlying motivations that all people had to possess–that must be there from the very fact that they themselves came form successful parentage and successful families of the past . . .

  4. syonredux says:

    “Which is considerably more drastic than what happened when the Spanish and Portuguese conquered and settled Latin America”

    Overall, sure, but didn’t Puerto Rico, for example,see the complete replacement of native Y-DNA ancestry?

    • owentt says:

      Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Hispaniola, along with Caribbean islands, appear to have seen near-total genetic replacement, Y and non-Y. The current inhabitants seem to be of European and African descent.

      • Young says:

        I think Puerto Ricans learned they have a good bit of Indian ancestry.

      • zinjanthropus says:

        Not worth much, but I lived in the Dominican Republic in the early 90s and was surprised to see a very Indian-looking girl in a small village. Only happened that one time. I wonder what a genetic analysis for her would have turned up. It could have been something very simple like a Mexican ancestor.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Hot news but off topic – with no mentions of the R word, which does not exist in Graunidaia: https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/oct/08/genetics-research-biased-towards-studying-white-europeans

    • Rosenmops says:

      A quote from the link:
      “In a recent study, published in Psychiatric Genetics, Curtis found that a commonly used genetic test to predict schizophrenia risk gives scores that are 10 times higher in people with African ancestry than those with European ancestry. This is not because people with African ancestry actually have a higher risk of schizophrenia, but because the genetic markers used were derived almost entirely from studies of individuals of European ancestry.”

      I have read is several places that people with African ancestry DO have higher risk of schizophrenia. For example:

      • gcochran9 says:

        threefold higher, but not ten times higher, in the US.

      • Phille says:

        ” This is not because people with African ancestry actually have a higher risk of schizophrenia, but because the genetic markers used were derived almost entirely from studies of individuals of European ancestry.”

        So Africans have fewer SNPs connected to EA because those have been derived from Europeans data sets and they have more SNPs connected to schizophrenia because those haven been derived from European data sets. Got it.

  6. dearieme says:

    “I’ve heard cases of the man taking the children and going back to Saudi Arabia, or Japan, and the mother has no legal way to get her children back.” Apparently it’s very hard indeed to get the German courts to give you your children back too.

    • dearieme says:

      Come to think of it: do the American courts often return children in such cases?

      • AppSocRes says:

        Elian Gonzalez? Although Janet Reno – damn her soul to hell – played a role. US courts usually side with the mother barring unusual circumstances.

  7. Pingback: The Indo-European Conquest of Iberia | Burned-Over District Perennialist

  8. DataExplorer says:

    4,500 years ago? That doesn’t correspond with the historical knowledge. According to history, prior to the Roman conquest (around 150 BC) only the Northeast of the Peninsula was populated by the “Celtiberians”, the South and West were populated by non Indo European speaking “Iberian” tribes. Unless this population replacement was a pre-Indo European one? Or the conquerors adopted the non Indo European languages, or the dates are slightly off and the Indo European conquerors were actually the Romans….

    • DataExplorer says:

      I am trying to get to the bottom of this discrepancy, but the El Pais link you provided is awful. It links to three other El Pais articles, none of which have anything to do with the study in question, they are literally just click bait links taking you to other articles on the archaeology of Spain that have nothing to do with the original article.

    • gcochran9 says:

      One DNA sample contains more data that all the books surviving from Classical times.

      We know that the Basque had a high degree of y-chromosome replacement from Indo-Europeans ( today they have a very high level of R1b chromosomes) while keeping their pre-Indo-European language.

      • JP Irwin says:

        One thing I’ve wondered is why R1b is the Steppe male marker in western Europe, but R1a plays that role in eastern Europe and I2 in Scandinavia (though less dominantly). Are we seeing the results of three great patriarchal warlord clans taking different paths to glory? I really wonder what happened, why is there so little R1a and I2 in western Europe? Why so little R1b in eastern Europe?

        • epoch2013 says:

          NW Europe and Scandinavia is I1 territory, not I2. We have an I1 from LBK 5000 BCE in Hungary, and one from battle axe culture. I1 is thought to have come into existence around 27.000 years ago. However, current diversity is mostly thought to have been only 3 to 5.000 years old. That gives a window of opportunity to theorize it got spread by the same waves that spread R1b or R1a.

          Scandinavia has a sizable amount of R1a, ~25% in Norway, ~15% in Sweden and Denmark. Roughly speaking R1a is a Corded Ware marker (all but 1 CW samples are R1a) and R1b a Bell Beaker marker (All R in BB is R1b). And I1 a Germanic marker.

          Former Yugoslavia is a I2 hotspot with over 50% in some parts.

      • Jaakko Raipala says:

        We don’t really know that when we don’t know where the Basques came from. We don’t know if they were in Iberia at the time of the R1b replacement. The Basque language may have arrived after R1b or the Basques may even have been some of the R1b invaders.

        We have examples like the Hungarians arriving as part of Turkic expansion even though they’re not Turkic. One way to avoid being overrun by steppe marauders is to join the horde and historical steppe hordes tended to become multiethnic with lots of small groups attached to the main core. Similar things may have happened with Indo-Europeans – perhaps the “original Basques” lived near the IE homeland and ended up joining the Indo-European invasion that took them far to the West.

        R1a seems to be the original Indo-European marker, not R1b, given that R1a was spread by Indo-Europeans all over Eurasia but R1b is a Western European thing. One way to explain this would be a two-stage IE expansion towards Western Europe where the R1a heavy original IEs first attack some R1b heavy neighbors, create an Indo-Europeanized culture out of them and then this second culture starts raiding Western Europe. Perhaps this group didn’t entirely lose their language and it got transplanted from the Black Sea region to Iberia.

        The most common speculative work of linguists has been trying to link Basque with Kartvelian languages of the Caucasus and that would put the origins of the language pretty close to the IE homeland.

        • JP Irwin says:

          Ok, I can follow that. Basques got confederated by IEs the way various Germanics got hitched to the Huns, or Tartars to the Mongols, that’s a plausible (and fun) story. Their sub horde makes it to Spain and settles there.

          The distribution of Y DNA makes me think we’re seeing the result of great warlords arising form within the Yamnaya. We know Yamnaya elite graves had both R1a and R1b in high frequency, before the expansion. R1a (Sons of Arias) went north and south from the Urheimat (Slavs, Iranians). R1b went west, I2 went northwest, longing to build a great welfare state and import heirs from the Horn of Africa.

      • DataExplorer says:

        The New Scientist article is behind a pay wall. But context matters a lot. Where in Spain were these DNA samples unearthed? Where they from the areas where we already knew the Celtiberians lived? I.e. the Northeast? Or were they from the areas where the Iberian speaking peoples lived? If its the former then nothing new has been discovered, if its the latter then this changes everything and is very hard to believe its true. I have not seen any actual links to the original study which details the number of samples analyzed, and their locations.

        • random observer says:

          “Where in Spain were these DNA samples unearthed? ”

          The DNA in Spain was found mainly on the plain.

          Sorry. Truly. Self-discipline failure in that I could not resist that.

    • epoch2013 says:

      “Or the conquerors adopted the non Indo European languages”

      Happens all the time. Why not there and then?

  9. Ledford Ledford says:

    My name is Íñigo Olalde. We killed your fathers. Prepare for our Y.

  10. J says:

    Spanish scientist Inigo Olalde refers to la transición Mesolítico-Neolítico that is the Yamnaya expansion by blue eyed swarthy individuals from the steppe. He has some alarming illustrations of these people (?) and says that the phenotype has disappeared in Spain.


  11. moscanarius says:

    IIRC, not many Spaniards and Portuguese came to the New World, and while their infectious diseases helped exterminate the natives, they were themselves weak to the tropical diseases brought by their African slaves.

    Still, some 50% of Latin American DNA (and >70% of Y chromosomes) came from the Peninsula, so their impact was pretty big.

  12. epoch2013 says:

    This is Iberia, which has one of the highest R1b abundance in Europe. The Netherlands, for instance, has a R1b + R1a barely over 50%. Germany and France roughly 60%. We have male farmers with I2 buried according to Corded Ware tradition in Czechia. So the extreme replacement disn’t happen in all of Europe.

  13. epoch2013 says:

    Another interesting thing that is hardly discussed: This isn’t the first utter replacement of male lineages. By the end of the middle Neolithic the original G2a lineage hardly prevailed. Most farmers Y-DNA came from hunter-gatherers, while most farmer autosomical DNA or especially mtDNA did not. There hasn’t been found one single G2a in middle Neolithic Britain as far as I know.

    • JP Irwin says:

      That’s fascinating. Bummer for the early farmer men. All that hard work and then your women ditch you for Indian raiders on the warpath.

      • NobodyExoectsThe... says:

        I dont think they ditch their men. More like the men ended up dead in a ditch

      • Coagulopath says:

        On that note, the story of the Bounty mutineers is interesting.

        They settled in Pitcairn with a number of slaves from Tahiti. Immediately, the white men took the Tahitian women as their own, which obviously didn’t sit well with the male Tahitians. In 1794, six of them hatched a plot to kill the mutineers and take control of the island.

        Apparently (it’s unclear) they were then murdered by the Tahitian women. Why? They liked the white men more.

        Sometimes the line between sexual selection and natural selection gets awfully blurry.

        • JP Irwin says:

          This is what I was thinking for these farmers. The farmer women had the hots for the wildmen. Not hard to imagine, what with the HGs having better teeth, being taller. Anyone want to write copper age romance novels? Did they have bodices then?

        • Emilia says:

          That’s kind of what happened in Latin America. Native American women often chose to pair up with Spanish or Portuguese (or other European) men, often abandoning their Native husbands in the process and sometimes even neglecting the children they had with their previous consorts. That’s not to say that rapes did not occur, but nothing suggests that the majority of European male-Native female relationships were not voluntary.

          Interestingly, in the Philippines, another former Spanish colony, there are even accounts of Filipina women going with Spanish priests and their parents encouraging them. However, because relatively few Spaniards went to the Philippines, their genetic impact there was minimal (not non-existent, but studies suggests probably around 5%).

          • Toddy Cat says:

            “Anyone want to write copper age romance novels?”

            What do you want to bet we’ll be seeing them soon?

          • syonredux says:

            “That’s kind of what happened in Latin America. Native American women often chose to pair up with Spanish or Portuguese (or other European) men, often abandoning their Native husbands in the process and sometimes even neglecting the children they had with their previous consorts. That’s not to say that rapes did not occur, but nothing suggests that the majority of European male-Native female relationships were not voluntary.”

            Male Spaniards in Latin America had a lot of opportunities in terms of spreading their genes…Where Amerind women were concerned, that frequently meant concubinage and de facto polygyny (the Church looked the other way)….

            • Emilia says:

              About concubinage, I think most relations between Spanish men and Amerindian women were out of wedlock. Polygamy was another feature of these relationships (not all, but many, of them), perhaps because Native women were eager to mate with Spanish men and might have tolerated sharing their lovers with other women.

              • J says:

                Emilia, it was not consensual. In Mexico, a common insult is “Hijo de la Gran Chingada” meaning “You are a son of the Great Rape”. La Gran Chingada refers to the immediate post conquest years.

              • gcochran9 says:

                It is possible that people noticed that children fathered by Spaniards, with their Old World immune systems, had a far better chance of surviving.

              • Emilia says:

                Hi. I’m actually trying to reply to the two following comments, but the reply sign doesn’t seem to below them. To J., I’m not saying there were no rapes in the Spanish conquest of the New World, but there’s no really indication they constituted the majority of Spanish male-Native female relationships – unless you go by the late Andrea Dworkin’s view that every act of intercourse between men and women is an act of war. Also, the word “chingar” doesn’t necessarily mean “rape” in Spanish (a better word would be “violar”).

                To Mr. Cochran, when you say that it was noticed that part-Spanish children were healthier than their unmixed Amerindian counterparts, do you mean that would be one of the reasons Amerindian women were keen to pair up with Spanish men?

              • Emilia says:

                The better immune system factor may have been the reason why, according to one report, some Native American women preferred to have children with Blacks than with Amerindian men. However, no one talks about these relationships (Native women-Black men) amounting to rape.

            • Emilia says:

              Yes, I agree the fact that mixed Spanish-Amerindian children may have had a better chance of survival could have been a factor that pushed Native women into relationships with European men. I also think gaining social prestige for themselves (the women) and their resulting offspring played a role. That seems to be one of the motives for Filipina women to go out with the (relatively) few Spanish men who ventured to the Philippines, as that country did not seem to be affected by diseases brought by the Europeans.

              • Emilia says:

                I’ll just conclude by saying that mestizos rather than “pure” Amerindians became the majority population in Latin America because they were more likely to survive for three reasons:

                First, Amerindian women often preferred to conceive mestizo children.
                Second, these children were more likely to be immune from Old World diseases.
                Third, their mothers may have taken better care of them than they did of their unmixed Amerindian offspring. The third is not a particularly heartwarming possibility, but it may very well have been the case. Similarly, it has been speculated that no pure Polynesian child was born on Pitcairn Island because the women there resorted to abortion if they got pregnant by one of the Tahitian men.

    • G2a and I2 says:

      G2a frequency remained OK in some Central European cultures by Middle Neolithic (e.g. Middle Neolithic Germany, Czech Republic), but the Atlantic Facade colonisation route seems to be I2 (and so do Central Europeans that fed from that route; like Funnelbeaker, Globular Amphora).

  14. Henry Scrope says:

    This was my father’s belief
    And this is also mine:
    Let the corn be all one sheaf—
    And the grapes be all one vine,
    Ere our children’s teeth are set on edge
    By bitter bread and wine.

  15. sprfls says:

    So what’s your take on IE in Anatolia? I’ve been scratching my head about it. Only negligible Steppe ancestry found in the Bronze Age samples… and what little there was seems to have been already present by the Chalcolithic (~4000BC sample from Barcin). This same sample differed from the earlier Neolithic ones by the addition of CHG / Iranian Neolithic stuff (modelled well using a ~4300BC sample from Armenia).

    Looking at just the genetic data, ignoring linguistics and archeology, my best guess is that proto-IE existed somewhere around eastern Anatolia / southern Caucuses and that proto-Anatolian was already spoken before 4,000 BC. That explains the early divergent branches while Yamnaya-related migrations later on explain the rest.

    Funnily enough I came to this independently but apparently a similar argument (old date for proto-IE, originating at the nexus of eastern Anatolia / southern Caucuses / northern Mesopotamia) was proposed by Sturtevant, a linguist at Yale, in 1926. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indo-Hittite

    • epoch2013 says:

      So how and, also importantly, when did Yamnaya acquire the IE language in that case? Remember we don’t see any significant migration of male lineages over the Caucasus.

    • epoch2013 says:

      “my best guess is that proto-IE existed somewhere around eastern Anatolia / southern Caucuses (….) while Yamnaya-related migrations later on explain the rest.”

      And how and when did Yamnaya pick up proto-IE? Because looking at just the genetic data that seems impossible any time later than 4500 BCE, as per the Maykop paper. Also, if that happened earlier it had remarkably little impact on male lineages, if any at all. Now, it is entirely possible for a band of conquerors to start using the language of their newly acquired lands. But for men to adopt the language of their foreign wives that came to live with them, notably without a discernible trace of their former language is an absurd proposition.

      • Jim says:

        Also virtually no terms relating to the sea have been reconstructed for Proto-IE. The reconstruction of proto-IE suggests a continental inland environment with severe winters.

      • sprfls says:

        It’s possible that proto-IE spread north past the Caucuses prior to being subsumed by Yamnaya invaders. Looking at the samples from Ukraine there was clearly a shift between before ~4000BC and ~4000-3500BC — a shift that added CHG-related ancestry. If people in Ukraine already had CHG at that time I’d bet we’d find even higher levels slightly to the south and east in southern Russia, directly north of the Caucuses.

        Yamnaya and their R1a/R1b then take over these locations and adopt the local language. So, the simplified flow would be somewhere around Caucuses westward to Anatolia, followed by Caucuses northward to Sredny Stog(?), Sredny Stog to Yamnaya… and the rest is known.

        Generally I think some interactions between the Caucuses and the Steppe were happening for a bit before the Yamnaya expansion — IE spread, as they say, slowly, then all at once.

        Similarly, it doesn’t take much for a Y-DNA hg to explode. Just a few generations of a band of brothers with a major reproductive advantage and that’s it.

        • epoch2013 says:

          That scenario warrants a HUGE substrate in the non-Anatolian languages. There isn’t anything published that points to that. On the contrary, PIE is one of the most mathematically described languages there is. Also, the CHG part needs to have transferred before 4500 BC because we know that Eneolithic steppe north of the Caucasus already is mixed.

          Lastly, we have samples from the steppe up until 9000 years ago. They also are R1. Nothing exploded, we see continuity.

          • sprfls says:

            Yes, there is some CHG in Khvalynsk on the Eneolithic steppe around 4700 BC. As I wrote, there were interactions between the Steppe and the Caucuses for a while before the Yamnaya come to the scene… but certainly Yamnaya end up with a lot more of it. This needs to be explained.

            I won’t speak to the linguistics angle because I don’t know enough about it — like I wrote, my thoughts are purely based on the ancient DNA alone, and not on linguistics or archeology. That said my general opinion of linguistics isn’t too high especially in comparison to direct genomic data.

            I never said there wasn’t continuity of R1 — of course there was. However that doesn’t mean that it didn’t explode in a major way around 4000-2500 years ago, which of course it did.

            Anyways, what’s your theory? How do you explain Anatolian seemingly without any real Steppe-related migrations? I definitely don’t feel strongly about any of these arguments and curious to hear what others think.

            • epoch2013 says:

              I wrote, there were interactions between the Steppe and the Caucuses for a while before the Yamnaya come to the scene… but certainly Yamnaya end up with a lot more of it. This needs to be explained.

              Female mediated from a population that was a continuation of pure CHG. How is uncertain. Such a continuation certainly did exist as NW Caucasian late Bronze Age Dolmen culture is almost pure CHG, as per the Maykop paper. Two of three of these samples had mtDNA that popped up in several Steppe cultures.

              Anyways, what’s your theory? How do you explain Anatolian seemingly without any real Steppe-related migrations?

              You realize that there are just two Hittite samples? That is all. We know that even during Hittite rule large parts of the empire weren’t Hittites. We know that from their founding myths and also it’s documented by Assyrian sources. the Hittites even addressed half of their gods in the Hattian language. We also know the Hittites cremated their death. Most Anatolian Bronze Age samples were buried and not from sites or dates clearly related to Anatolian speakers. The two Hittite samples were likely not core Hittite – because those would have likely been cremated – and therefore could simply be a continuation from Hattians or other populations that extisted in Anatolia before the rise of the Hittites. Even if we’ll never manage to find a trace of steppe in samples in burials I’d say the Steppe Theory isn’t in jeopardy.

              Take note that cremation was no Middle-Eastern tradition but was found in early Bronze Age Balkan kurgans. The road could therefore be Sredny Stog -> Suvorovo during Eneolithic (4500 BC) -> early Bronze Age Balkans -> Anatolia, where they never became a majority even in the realms they ruled. We have no Suvorovo samples but we have two samples from Eneolithic Bulgaria with Steppe admixture, one from the culture directly preceding Suvorovo and one less then 100 kilometer west from it’s known area. Balkans early Bronza Age samples did show Steppe admixture. (See Mathieson 2018)

              I think genetics, by the way, only makes sense in archaeological and linguistic context. Especially if used to validate language expansion theories.

              • sprfls says:

                I find the Balkan route unlikely. The very same Mathieson paper you reference comes to the same conclusion:

                “If [the Balkan route] were correct, then one way to detect evidence of it would be the appearance of large amounts of steppe-related ancestry first in the Balkan Peninsula, and then in Anatolia. However, our data show no evidence for this scenario. While we find sporadic examples of steppe-related ancestry in Balkan Copper and Bronze Age individuals, this ancestry is rare until the late Bronze Age. Moreover, while Bronze Age Anatolian individuals have CHG-related ancestry, they have neither the EHG-related ancestry characteristic of all steppe populations sampled to date, nor the WHG-related ancestry that is ubiquitous in Neolithic southeastern Europe.”

                Bottom line is Anatolian had to come from somewhere; Hittites had to come from somewhere. I generally find the elite dominance model plausible and it’s true we don’t have many Hittite samples yet to make a call. Yet let’s say we found some proper high-status Hittites and they had significant Steppe admixture… we’re looking at ~2000 BC at the earliest which leaves us ~1-2 millennia to account for, while also accounting for the early branching of Anatolian.

              • epoch2013 says:


                I disagree with Mathieson’s conclusions. They have two Copper Age samples that have clear steppe admixture which are very close in time and geographically to the Suvorovo culture. That culture has been considered intrusive. It also has very clear connections to steppe cultures such as Sredny Stog and Khvalynsk such as flexed burials in Kurgans, red ochre and horse head scepters.

                So I think Mathieson’s paper has all the proof we need.

                Furthermore, don’t underestimate the prevalence of cremation. It seems like special pleading to think that the Hittites developed that independently while it arose along the entire IE horizon.

              • epoch2013 says:


                To elaborate on the cremation: First cremation cemeteries are in the Copper Age Carpathians, among farmers. Later on, they start to pop up in Corded Ware and Andronovo later on.

                There is nothing similar south of the Caucasus.

          • sprfls says:

            (Sorry, I meant 4000-2500 BC, not years ago.)

    • Greying Wanderer says:

      “what’s your take on IE in Anatolia?”

      i have a few but one of mine is small number of steppe mercenaries providing security at intrusive mining settlements who became dominant later for sword-related reasons.

      • gcochran9 says:

        No swords back then.

        • Greying Wanderer says:

          i may have been misinformed but


          “The first swords known in the Early Bronze Age (c. 33rd to 31st centuries) are based on finds at Arslantepe by Marcella Frangipane of Rome University.[18][19][20]”

          leaving aside the details on the specific kind of weapons that may involved in this scenario i think the key point may be

          “they are composed of arsenic-copper alloy”

          that regions with mines producing ore of a specific kind had an edge over other regions even at the same level of metallurgical development so a map of the regions with that alloy overlaid over a map of which cultures won more battles than they lost might be informative.

  16. MagyarFasz says:


    So I take it that you don’t buy Vambery’s ideas on a Hun-proto-Magyar group existing in the Carpathian Basin subsuming the conquering Magyars with proto-Hungarian?

    How would a tiny group of conquering Magyars force magyar language on a larger population in situ?

      • Jim says:

        What about Finland? Finnish was imposed by a population from Central Asia without a huge genetic impact on Finns. I read that Finnish Lapps are only about 20% genetically of Central Asian ancestry, so again a language was imposed on them by a considerably smaller population of invaders.

        • Jaakko Raipala says:

          The Mongoloid components in Finns and Saamis do not match Central Asia at all, they partially match some Siberian peoples and in ancient DNA certain pre-historical cultures in northeastern China that curiously archaeologists already matched us to. (Saamis also seem to have some later, additional Siberian admixture that Finns don’t have.) The homeland theory favored by linguists places the Finno-Ugric on the Volga on the European side of the Urals and if that’s true then the proto-Finno-Ugric speakers would likely be some sort of Eurasians themselves; there is no reason why they should be pure Asians or Europeans.

          The people who brought the Finnish and Saami to the Baltic Sea region were almost certainly northern European looking with only a minor Mongoloid component and Finns could well have a large genetic input from them. We know this because the migration of Finno-Ugric speakers left behind a chain of peoples who now only exist as pockets among Russians and this is a lot of peoples with various Caucasoid and Mongoloid components; mostly Caucasoid with a minor Mongoloid component and there are no entirely pure Mongoloids among Finno-Ugric speakers.

          Previously there was the question of whether this is due to admixture with Russians but we now have the tools of genetics. The closest linguistic relatives of Finns, Estonians and Saamis on the Volga are the Mordvins who are also northeast Europeans with a minor Mongoloid component (Mordvin visitors in Finland effortlessly pass as locals). We do see the genetic similarity when we break it all down to various components. Mordvins have Finno-Ugric neighbors like Maris, Udmurts etc but their language is closer to Finnish and Saami than their close neighbors.

          Even if the Volga homeland for proto-Finno-Ugric turns out to be wrong, the Western expansionist branch of Finno-Ugric made up of FInnish, Saami, Mordvinic and a lot of related now mostly extinct languages in northern Russia almost certainly formed on the Volga near present-day Mordovia and they must have looked mostly European considering the now separated Finno-Ugric speakers seem to share both Caucasoid and Mongoloid components.

          So the Finno-Ugric invasion of Finland and Lapland would have been by mainly northern European looking people with a minor Mongoloid component which got further diluted in Finns by admixture with whoever was here before while Saamis seem to have picked up some additional Mongoloid admixture from contact with Siberians (the north is just open tundra with no migration barriers to Siberia besides the Urals).

          Finno-Ugric invaders definitely left their genetic mark on Finnish Y-chromosomes given that FInland is majority N1c, though of course you could have almost total male lineage replacement with a small number of invaders.

          • Jim says:

            How genetically different are Finns from other Scandinavians? Also how genetically different are Hungarians from neighboring Eastern Europeans?

          • Jim says:

            The Maltese speak a Semitic language derived from Arabic but they are only about 10% Middle Eastern genetically. Not a great deal different from other Southern Europeans. So a language of invaders can be established without massive population replacement.

  17. Rosenmops says:

    Off topic:
    Robert Plomin’s new book “Blueprint” is still not available in a Kindle edition.
    Very disappointing.

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