February 18, 2014

From North of Sochi

Greg Cochran closely reads the new paper "Ancient human genomes suggest three ancestral populations for present-day Europeans" and predicts that the giant team that put it together has an even bigger news paper coming on the geographic origins of Indo-European speakers, which has been one of the great controversies.
So they must have a paper in the works – one with strong conclusions, if they’re that worried about someone scooping them.  They were too obvious – they need a course in maskirovka. They have got to be looking at ancient DNA from relevant populations: from Kurgan burials, from Russia north of the Caucasus, Tocharian mummies, etc.  They’re going to need strong evidence, and a baseball bat, to get linguists to pay attention.  Looks to me like we”re going to get at least half of the story (the European end) of  the Indo-European expansion out of this, and probably we’ll learn something about Indo-Aryan end as well. 
I will predict this: they’ll pussyfoot about the likely historical process, which undoubtedly was awesomely bloody. The Balkans looks to be where this started, and there a fairly sophisticated agricultural population (with very advanced metallurgy for the time) seems to have been utterly squished.

I don't know about the prehistory, but the history of Bulgaria has largely been one of the locals getting squished, so maybe it was also like that before anybody wrote things down. In the comments, Henry Harpending notes:
Re the Indo-European advantage: consider that Mare’s milk has 190 Calories of fat and protein per gram and 250 Calories of lactose. Five kg. per day from one mare feeds two lactose tolerant children with 2200 Calories and fewer than one non-LT child with only 950 Calories. This is a huge nutritional advantage in an occasionally Malthusian ecology. My bet (hypothesis) is that the early IE people were horse people and that instant doubling of the food supply from a new gene was essentially the cause of the IE expansion. You can’t argue with calories.
    
Cochran adds:
The Indo-European invasion is a bit unusual in that it is not agriculturalists displacing foragers. More like agro-pastoralists (with an emphasis on pastoralism, probably) displacing straight farmers. 
Raising cattle probably preadapts for warfare through constant rustling. Valuable portable assets.

A commenter amends:
Or Aggro-Pastoralists, given the carnage they may have inflicted.

By the way, the Sioux Indians expanded radically to the west after they got guns and horses and white man diseases weakened their more densely populated Indian rivals:
Between approximately 1685 and 1876 the western Sioux conquered and controlled an area from the Minnesota River in Minnesota, west to the head of the Yellowstone, and south from the Yellowstone to the drainage of the upper Republican River. This advance westward took place in three identifiable stages: initially a movement during the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries onto the prairies east of the Missouri, then a conquest of the middle Missouri River region during the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and, finally, a sweep west and south from the Missouri during the early and mid-nineteenth
century. Each of these stages possessed its own impetus and rationale. Taken together they comprised a sustained movement by the Sioux that resulted in the dispossession or subjugation of numerous tribes and made the Sioux a major Indian power on the Great Plains during the nineteenth century

Not a perfect analogy to the proposed Indo-European expansion, but interesting.
    

69 comments:

Hunsdon said...

This is way better than dope.

Anonymous said...

> "Sioux Indians... white man diseases..."

Something which I've wondered about a lot recently:

1) Is it really true that disease took a terrible toll on the Indians of North America?

2) And, if so, then why did disease not take a terrible toll on the Indians of Central America [Mexico] - the Nahuatl, Yucatec, Mixtec, Zapotec, etc?

It seems like circa the 1986 Reagan amnesty, we had only maybe one million Indians in the USA [and it might have been only a few hundred thousand Indians in the USA?], whereas Mexico had 50 million or 75 million Indians just waiting to storm across the border.

Or maybe there just never were all that many Indians in the territory which would become the USA?

Maybe the overwhelming majority of the Indians were always down in Mexico?

Anonymous said...

The Indo-Europeans are fascinating. And the incredible diversity of their ancestors is a demonstration of how while genes are important, environmental factors predominate over genetic factors.

This must be so, otherwise if Norwegians and Chechens have the same ancestors, how else could you explain the very different present day IQ scores and socioeconomic outcomes?

This raises the question, how would the Indo-European tribes do on IQ tests? How would the illiterate barbarian tribes who were the progenitors of today's high-IQ Northern European populations (clearly dumber than their ancient Greek and Roman neighbors) do?

Willis said...

While it's been alleged that the farmer and the cow man can't be friends, lactase persistence actually aided in the spread of agriculture by providing farming populations with calories while their crops were still growing or when they ran out. It was an advantage for Indo-Europeans to the end of the 1800s, as they conquered the Americas, Australia, New Zealand, etc. Had the Chinese tried to conquer North America instead of Europeans, would they have been able to do so, absent the gene for lactase persistence?

keypusher said...

There is an obvious parallel to the Greeks besieging Troy in the Iliad. Cattle- and horse-rustling seems to be their normal mode of warfare.

Anonymous said...

"Mare’s milk has 190 Calories of fat and protein per gram and 250 Calories of lactose. Five kg. per day from one mare feeds two lactose tolerant children with 2200 Calories and fewer than one non-LT child with only 950 Calories."

that has to be 440 calories per kilogram of mare's milk not per gram.

Reg Cæsar said...

.…the history of Bulgaria has largely been one of the locals getting squished…

More than just squished. The word "buggery" derives from their demonym. So does "vulgar".

kaganovitch said...

Harpending's comment has math error; either he didn't mean grams or calorie total is wrong or something else.

Anonymous said...

This is exactly why I find it amusing that the Sioux are so grumpy about the White Man stealing the "sacred" Black Hills from them. Sure, the White Man did steal the Black Hills from the Sioux, but that occurred only a few generations after the Sioux stole the Black Hills from other, weaker, Indian tribes. The federal government is sitting on 1.4 billion dollars earmarked to compensate the Sioux for the taking of the Black Hills, but the Sioux are holding out for the property itself (which, of course, will never happen). But the Sioux actually don't hold any better title to the Black Hills than the White Man does; both groups took the land from weaker tribes, simply because they could. The White Man, being prone to excessive guilt feelings, is at least offering monetary compensation to the Sioux; we can speculate that the Sioux offered nothing but death and slavery to the tribes they stole the land from.

Alexandros HoMegas said...

Indo-European speakers used to be dominant in Northwestern China, Central Asia and Anatolia, ALL those áreas are now dominated by Turkic speakers.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like the rapid Mongol expansion in the 13th Century.

Contrary to Jared Diamond's "farmer power" explanation, John Keegan in his "A History of Warfare" posits that much of pre-modern history has been the military triumph of semi-nomads (those on the border bewteen settled, agricultural lands and true "pure" noamds) who were able to harness both the technology of the farmers and the warmaking capacity of the nomads all the while having sufficient population made possible by contacts with civilization.

5371 said...

Cochran knows a lot about biology, much less about language - but he is quite sure of his infallibility in the latter area.

Anonymous said...

Monetizing free speech

http://www.wnd.com/2014/02/google-accuses-wnd-of-hate-speech/

PeterDownUnder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PeterDownUnder said...

Northeast Asia has a similar history with Northern nomadic horseman conquering Southern settled farmers.

China has a long history of cyclic conquests by Northern nomads who conquer the native Chinese farmers, to be sinicised over about a century to be replaced by new conquerers from the North. Like how the Mongolic Khitans conquered the Chinese to found the Liao dynasty, to be conquered by the Jurchen Jin dynasty, then to be conquered by Genghis Khan himself for the Yuan dynasty followed by a shortlived ethnic Chinese Ming dynasty followed by the Manchu Qing dynasty.

The Koreans are also a race of Northern nomads conquering and migrating south to the peninsula. Eventually they were trapped in the peninsula alone via successive conquerors of the steppes. Out of the 3 founding ancient kingdoms of Korea, 2 had founding legends of heavenly beings landing on Earth story whilst the other had being born from an egg legend, representing the Northern roots of 2 and the Southern roots of the other.

Japan also has a history of horse riding conquerors migrating to the islands and dominating or replacing the native Yayoi people.



Another interesting tradition in East Asia is that of "face reading" where one's facial features are read for fortune telling purposes. Northern features such as high cheeks and high foreheads and sharp noses are considered fortunate whilst Southern features such as round features, round eyes and flat noses are less fortunate.

But surprisingly most East Asians are actually lactose intolerant for some reason.

5371 said...

"Bugger" comes from "Bulgar" not because of anything done by any of the nations named Bulgarian, but because the Albigensian sect at one time was said to have its headquarters in Bulgaria. Religious unorthodoxy was popularly believed to extend to sexual unorthodoxy.

Anonymous said...

Actually the archaeo molecular genetics fraternity - particularly some very busy and committed 'enthuiastic amateur', ('amateurs' in the best sense of the word here, they are all highly accomplished but are not working as university staff), have more or less correlated the spread of the Indo Europeans all those years ago with the frequency and distribution of the r1a1a male dna haplotype.
Basically, the Indo Europeans were strongly patrilinearl in their relatedness - although they took wives from all sorts of people, male descent defined them, therefore Eurasia wide r1a1a distribution more or less corresponds of what we know of Indo European expansion from historical and archaeological evidence and the distribution of preset day alnguages.
This result was one of the first triumphs of widespread molecular genetic testing back in the 2000s, scholars noticed the pattern back then. Further high definition analysis strengthened the case.

Anonymous said...

The Indo-Europeans must have been so jacked thanks to that GOMAD (gallon of milk a day) diet--no wonder they had such an easy time of conquering everyone.

Anonymous said...

***"The Indo-Europeans are fascinating. And the incredible diversity of their ancestors is a demonstration of how while genes are important, environmental factors predominate over genetic factors.

This must be so, otherwise if Norwegians and Chechens have the same ancestors, how else could you explain the very different present day IQ scores and socioeconomic outcomes?"***

Not so fast. Norwegians are Indo-Europeans, but Chechens aren't.

Anonymous said...


Or maybe there just never were all that many Indians in the territory which would become the USA?


The most balanced view on this comes from a couple of archaeologist friends -who aren't flakes: their numbers were never enormous. For example, the Southern Appalachians probably never had more than 25,000 people at any one time, and no permanent settlement in the upper mountains. On the other hand, there is a lot of evidence of population collapse post 1540 Desoto parts of the deep South and further up in the Mississippi River valley. Lots of villages simply disappeared. The level of craft shown in artifacts went way down in many of these areas. There were regions where Euro-introduced disease took its toll.

dearieme said...

"then why did disease not take a terrible toll on the Indians of Central America": but it did.

Anonymous said...

"The Indo-Europeans are fascinating. And the incredible diversity of their ancestors is a demonstration of how while genes are important, environmental factors predominate over genetic factors."

Nope. Not divers at all and not environment (except physical environment i.e. latitude).

.


"This must be so, otherwise if Norwegians and Chechens have the same ancestors, how else could you explain the very different present day IQ scores and socioeconomic outcomes?"

Easily.

Base Indo-Europeans not particularly bright.

Bonus IQ from the iodine transferring farmer genes (SLC24A5).

IQ bonus from iodine gene proportional to skin lightness and skin lightness on a northern cline.

So:

base IQ + (SLC genes * skin lightness)

.

"This raises the question, how would the Indo-European tribes do on IQ tests?"

More or less the same as Native Americans imo.

.

"How would the illiterate barbarian tribes who were the progenitors of today's high-IQ Northern European populations (clearly dumber than their ancient Greek and Roman neighbors) do?"

Dumber before they got the farmer SLC genes but smarter after they got the SLC genes (due to lighter skin generating more pre-natal and post-natal iodine).

Anonymous said...

"Maybe the overwhelming majority of the Indians were always down in Mexico?"

This is true. Supposedly, at the time Columbus arrived more than half of the Western Hemisphere's population lived in what is today's Mexico and Peru. This makes sense, since these were the only two areas in the New World to have developed agriculture on a grand scale.

And as far as European diseases go, the Southern natives did suffer from them just as the North American ones did. There were just a lot more of them to begin with. Or perhaps the Southerners had hardier resistance due to the tropical climate.

What is also interesting is the theory once the Spanish introduced those diseases to the Indians in the early 1500's, they spread like wildfire across both continents, decimating North American populations well in advance of the arrival of English settlers. This is why the English and later the Americans had an easier go of it, and also had far less admixture than the Spanish settlers did. The Indians they encountered were much fewer and far between.

Volksverhetzer said...

There aren't any Indo-Europeans, as they never show up in Scandinavia, and the Scandinavian tame animals seems to have originated there as well.

""Bugger" comes from "Bulgar" not"

Bugger is the same word as buck, bag, and comes from how horny the male goat is, and the very large balls he has. I don't know if a bag was named after a buck, or the opposite, but the bag/buck root have given us a host of words in most Germanic languages.

The Swedes call Norwegians "North-bucks" that is "norrbagge" They are not the only ones who have made the connection that Norway is so steep and rocky, that it is only suited for goats, but the Danes call us "mountain monkeys" for some unknown reason.

Dan said...

This is Keegan's thesis.

It's probably a good explanation for the wipe out of the Indian too.

Lactose intolerance is a huge reproductive disadvantage.

jgress said...

Geography correlates with linguistic diversity. The Great Plains are dominated by just a couple of Amerindian language families, like Macro-Siouan and Algonquian. The steppes of Central Asia have also historically been dominated by a single family for much of the time, starting with Proto-Indo-European, then Proto-Iranian (itself a daughter of PIE), then Turkic, then almost Mongolian but that ended up not replacing the Turkic majority.

It makes sense, of course: with few natural obstacles it's easy for one group to dominate a large area. The vast plains of northern China have been mostly monoglot Mandarin-speaking for a long time, while the mountains of southern China host a plethora of related but mutually unintelligible Sinitic languages. Other mountainous areas with large diversity include the Caucasus, East Africa and New Guinea; coastlines also tend to be diverse, such as California (home to a huge number of Amerindian families and isolates) and northern Australia.

Anonymous said...

"Bugger" comes from "Bulgar" not because of anything done by any of the nations named Bulgarian, but because the Albigensian sect at one time was said to have its headquarters in Bulgaria. Religious unorthodoxy was popularly believed to extend to sexual unorthodoxy."

Funny how stereotypes and folk wisdom aren't so sacrosanct with istevers when its there behind being gored.

Ray Lopez said...

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/12/us-science-native-americans-origins-idUSBREA1B1TS20140212?feedType=RSS&feedName=scienceNews

White Nativist theory of North American colonization has setback...at least in the western USA. Comment you sordid little racist! lol

Anonymous said...

"Or maybe there just never were all that many Indians in the territory which would become the USA?"

On the territory of the USA pre-Columbian agriculture was recent, primitive and not very widespread. I think most of what is now the US was hunter-gatherer territory. Mexico had old, well-established agriculture. A square mile of cultivated land will feed at least an order of magnitude more people than a square mile of wilderness. So yes, Mexico had a lot more people. A long history of agriculture also explains Mexicans' considerable capacity for hard work.

Dan said...

Better at war too.

A nomad on a horse drawn chariot used to tending a herd of sheep/goats and other cattle is inadvertently in continual training for battle. Controlling and dominating the Alpha Sheep is the name of the game. Also, the charioteer/herdsman is used to butchering lambs and blood
N guts are everyday occurrences. Ezekiel's Work of the Chariot is a good racial memory of the steppe charioteers going in to dominate everyone.

It required the Greeks to figure out a way for farmers to dominate charioteers.

Mr Drab said...

"... if Norwegians and Chechens have the same ancestors, how else could you explain the very different present day IQ scores and socioeconomic outcomes?"

Who said there was a big difference in IQ between Norwegians and Chechens?

I haven't seen any data to suggest Chechens - or Georgians, Armenians, Ossetians etc. - fall below the white/European mean.

That is not to say they don't. I just haven't heard of any studies of Chechen IQ.

Felix said...

The dietary calorie is actually a kilocalorie. So,one 'calorie' you see on a nutritional label is equal to 1000 calories. Cmon that's high school chemistry.

Anonymous said...

"Who said there was a big difference in IQ between Norwegians and Chechens?"

Maybe a more instructive comparison might be between say, the Italians and Iranians. Both had Indo-European ancestors and there is a pretty big disparity in IQ scores. This is from Steve's website

http://www.isteve.com/iq_table.htm

The point I was getting at is that there is no other way to explain how two groups of people who share significant ancestry could have different IQ outcomes without chalking it up to non-hereditary reasons.

Anonymous said...

You know, I wonder whether basic HBD ignorance could have been at the heart of Reagan's suicidal naivete in signing Simpson-Mazzoli?

Reagan was pretty hard on North American Indians - he had this famous joke which went something like, "Why did the gubmint worker at the Bureau of Indian Affairs have such a sad, forlorn look on his face? Because his Indian died."

Maybe Reagan was thinking that if we had at most 500,000 or 750,000 North American Indians in the USA, then how bad could an amnesty for Mexican Indians possibly be?

And maybe it never dawned on him that Mexico could be sheltering more like 50,000,000 or 75,000,000 Indians which they were more than willing to unleash upon us.

It also begs the question of whether the Bush family was aware of these massively asymmetric population demographics back in that time period.

Although I haven't ever seen evidence of any sort of a Machiavellian intelligence on the part of the Bush family - if it's there, then they do a damned good job of faking stupidity in its place.

Anonymous said...

Or perhaps the Southerners had hardier resistance due to the tropical climate.

That's the kind of thing I'm wondering about - smallpox ought to be an equal-opportunity destroyer of nations.

Also, there seem to be some native strains of bubonic plague in the rodents of the American Southwest.

So maybe the urban squalor of pre-Columbian Mexico helped to prepare the aboriginals for the diseases of Europe?

Whereas the hunter-gatherers up North, in what would become the USA, had no such selective preparation?

BurplesonAFB said...

Yeah. grams and calories then kilograms and kilocalories. Probably just a Greg Cochran is a big nerd thing.

Acilius said...

"They’re going to need strong evidence, and a baseball bat, to get linguists to pay attention."

I'd say that's backwards. Historical linguists may not be especially quick to embrace hypotheses based on findings from population genetics, but population geneticists and physical anthropologists often flatly refuse to engage with evidence from historical linguistics.

So when DNA boys propose IE origins stretching back several thousand years before the advent of wheeled vehicles, historical linguists ask them how it came to be that all branches of the IE family except Anatolian have the same vocabulary for the making of wheeled vehicles. Rather than an answer to that question, you get lots of self-righteous posturing. Frankly, it's hard to avoid a suspicion that most of the population geneticists and physical anthropologists who turn to questions in historical linguistics are showing signs of emeritus disease. They may not be keeping up with their own fields, but they are still confident they can straighten everyone else out.

What would be more interesting would be research that starts from the recognition that population movements and language diffusion don't have a simple one-to-one relationship.

So, for example, it looks like over 80% of the ancestral lines represented in the current population of the UK can be traced back to people who were in those islands 9000 years ago. That would imply that the current levels of immigration to the UK are probably the only true mass migration the islands have received in that time. Yet Britain has undergone several radical changes in language during that period.

Many of those changes would have been triggered by the arrival of truly tiny groups. For example, the Anglo-Saxon invasion of 449 was probably a matter of a handful of warriors displacing the Celtic-speaking elite. Gildas, a contemporary Celtic writer, supports that when he tells us that the invaders that year arrived on two ships. And indeed, a much larger invasion of Britain than that would have required a much larger fleet than the archaeological record suggests would have been available to the Angles, Saxons, Jutes, and Friis in the mid-fifth century.

What's more, we know a great deal now from studies of the postcolonial world about how languages spread. Not only do we not find a straightforward one-to-one relationship between population movements and language spread, we don't find a one-to-one relationship between political dominance and language spread either. The rise of English in India since 1947 is an obvious example of a language that has gained currency after its speakers have lost political power. So if a Hindi speaker and an Urdu speaker want to do business, English is available as a language that puts them both at an equal disadvantage.

Indeed, studies of the spread of English in India have gone a long way to solving the old riddle of the origin of the Romance languages. It used to puzzle people that Latin seems hardly to have been used at all outside Italy and Roman colonies until the Roman Empire began to fall, at which point it spread rapidly and demotic versions of it displaced local languages in much of the west. That doesn't seem so mysterious now that we can see the usefulness of an appearance of political neutrality for a language.

Vlad the Inhaler said...

So does "vulgar".

I.e., so too does it come from the ethnic designation "Bulgar".

It's already been pointed out several times that the origin of the term "bugger" has nothing to do with the Bulgarians directly (though it does ultimately go back to them).

But it should be pointed out in addition that "vulgar" comes from a Latin adjective formed perfectly regularly from the Latin noun vulgus, which means "common people". Hence, what is associated with the lower-classes was considered "vulgar". The word has absolutely nothing to do with the population of Bulgaria (of whatever religious or sexual inclinations).

As Horace might say, odi profanum vulgus et arceo.

Anonymous said...

The Indo-European invasion is a bit unusual in that it is not agriculturalists displacing foragers. More like agro-pastoralists (with an emphasis on pastoralism, probably) displacing straight farmers.


Nothing unusual about that, horse riding pastoralists subjugating/displacing farmers was a regular occurrence for several thousand years. See the Huns, Tartars, Mongols, and others.

It's not a coincidence that the ruling classes in many places had (and still have in some cases) hobbies which involved hunting game from horseback.

PIE Etymology for BS said...

You know, I've been doing a lot of looking into all this DNA-history hype, and while it sounded cool at first, if you look at the details, it seems pretty sketchy in both theory and practice. Oddly enough, while the people who do this sort of thing give us very detailed stories about the expansion of "sub-clades" (equated with specific ethnic and linguistic groups) and whatnot across Europe during, say, the Mesolithic period, it turns out that you can't actually distinguish the present-day Hungarians from their Slavic neighbors. Huh, imagine that.

To some extent this pseudo-history cooked up on the basis of DNA reminds me of the Global Warming hysteria. The "modeling" can't predict what's going on before our eyes, yet somehow ice cores from Antarctica allow us to know exactly what the climate was doing many thousands of years ago.

I think it's worthwhile to let the dust settle on this exciting new DNA game before laying any wagers on where exactly in Moldavia the first "Proto-Indo-European" bought a bus ticket to Hallstadt.

5371 said...

If you can explain what a large nutsack has to do specifically with sodomy, you could probably sell sand to the Saudis.

Anonymous said...

"And, if so, then why did disease not take a terrible toll on the Indians of Central America...?"

My understanding is that it did have a devastating effect, but because European whites were particularly vulnerable to diseases of the tropical and subtropical climate of the region, they never managed to outnumber the Amerindian population in the way that, say, New England Yankees did. The Amerindians there died in massive numbers from smallpox and the like, but eventually their numbers bounced back. The Conquistadors didn't worry as much about smallpox, but they died from just about everything else that stagnant jungle water has to offer.

Anonymous said...

if Norwegians and Chechens have the same ancestors

Norwegians and Chechens don't have the same proportions of ancestry. For example, the Chechens have more ANE ancestry than WHG ancestry, whereas it is the opposite for Norwegians.

Willis said...

It would be silly to dismiss the LP gene as simply a gene for warrior-nomads. The benefits it conferred up its bearers compared to their non-LP neighbors must have been numerous. Early farmers took a huge nutritional hit when they adopted a grain-based diet. Their bodies appear to have been smaller and more frail compared to their hunter-gatherer ancestors.

Being able to digest milk into adulthood would have nutritionally complemented their carbohydrate diet with an easy source of fat and protein. They would have been more robust, helping them to better withstand disease and out-fight non-LP neighbors. They would have been more mobile, which would have aided them in expansion, both in peaceful and non - peaceful ways (see the US, ca. 1600-1900). And they would have been better able to withstand crop shortages. It would have helped them to displace the probably nonn-LP Near Eastern farmers who originally brought agriculture to Europe.

There are probably a half-dozen or more significant ways in which lactase persistence helped them to out-compete and out-expand their competitors.

Anonymous said...

There aren't any Indo-Europeans, as they never show up in Scandinavia, and the Scandinavian tame animals seems to have originated there as well.

That applies to India as well. There is no archaeological evidence to indicate a migration from North/Central Asia. The cattle (presumed to be dear to the hearts of the IE people) is a native sub-species as well and was domesticated independently.
Yet how do you explain the uncanny resemblance of languages from Scandinavia to Eastern India?

Reg Cæsar said...

Funny how stereotypes and folk wisdom aren't so sacrosanct with istevers when its there behind being gored. --anonymous body cavity ["its there"? Really… sue "you're" grade school and leave us alone]

Anyone who managed to make it all the way through Fun With Dick and Jane would have seen that Steve's statement painted the Bulgarians as victims, and my comment did as well. Victims of buggery, slander about buggery, Albigensian settlement, or slander about Albigensian settlement, but victims of something.

But then, progressivism is not about logic, "its" about power. The power to Bulgar the rest of us.


Reg Cæsar said...


That is not to say they don't. I just haven't heard of any studies of Chechen IQ.
--Mr Drab

Nor of any other group likely to kidnap or murder the proctors.

Anonymous said...

"If Norwegians and Chechens have the same ancestors, how else could you explain the very different present day IQ scores and socioeconomic outcomes?"

The two groups still had a large number of other ancestors they did not share in common. It's not as if the person who had the original LP mutation was the only man or woman in their lineage. His other DNA may have been crap. He may have been a prehistoric dunce. The rest of his DNA may have been bred out of the population all but entirely. What matters is that people got the LP mutation.

Anonymous said...

"Raising cattle probably preadapts for warfare through constant rustling."

Herd management in itself leads to the kind of battlefield tactics which wouldn't come as naturally to farmers. Knowing how to steer a herd or flock toward a desired location is not far from knowing how to steer your enemies into the killing zone.

Kel said...

@Anonymous 6:54pm
"1) Is it really true that disease took a terrible toll on the Indians of North America?

2) And, if so, then why did disease not take a terrible toll on the Indians of Central America [Mexico] - the Nahuatl, Yucatec, Mixtec, Zapotec, etc? "


There were mostly like less than a million people in sparsely populated North America compared to the density of the Valley of Mexico (the densest populated area on earth.) Old world diseases took a toll on both groups.

The Spaniards often married the Indian women thus preserving the genes. The English settlers brought many of their own women to marry.

So there are more Indians(often with admixture to varying degrees ) in Central & South America because there were more to begin with and they where more likely to marry into the disease resistant gene pool. Also, areas of Central and South America such as rain forests and Andean peaks are inhospitable to European civilization. These groups still show more pre Columbian DNA.

Simon in London said...

Mr Drab:
"I haven't seen any data to suggest Chechens - or Georgians, Armenians, Ossetians etc. - fall below the white/European mean."

Georgians seem a pretty bright bunch, at any rate, and I get the impression Armenians et al are much the same. IME they all seem to have 'generic white' IQs, probably 90+, with most of any gap between them and NW Euros being cultural. For low IQ Caucasoids you have to go a good way further south.

pat said...

The Bulgarian Buggery connection seems to be valid but indirect.

This topic made me recall the pop song 'Dominique' from the early sixties.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EO7cD6qmydo&feature=kp

This was an odd choice for an American pop hit. Most pop ballads of the day dealt with self pity over sexual failures. This is literal hagiography sung in French by nuns. Weird.

I learned back then that the real Saint Dominic was the bloodthirsty fanatic who when asked how the soldiers were to differentiate between the true Catholics and the Albigensian heretics replied - "Kill them all God knows his own". Like many things I learned in the sixties this wasn't really true - it was someone else who said that. But it was illustrative of attitudes in the 13th century and the 1960s.

The Albigensians were ascetic heretics whom the Catholics accused of sexual deviancy like that that they associated with Bulgarians. This raises an interesting point.

Later in the fifteenth century Savonarola earned the undying enmity of all gay sympathizers by advocating and effectuating a lot of gay 'burnings at the stake'. But it seems likely that he was more interested in the spiritual and doctrinal deviancy than their mere sexual deviancy.

The Church fathers liked to tag free thinkers as Buggers or Bulgars so as to illustrate to their illiterate congregations just how outside the normal the heretics were. The average medieval peasant might have some trouble with esoteric Church doctrine, but they understood sex well enough. It was sort of like decorating churches with paintings so as the present the bible stories to those who neither had a bible nor could read.

Or at least that's my theory.

Albertosaurus

Reg Cæsar said...

White Nativist theory of North American colonization has setback... --some "sordid" cleftwipe with a conquistadorean surname and a sneaky, deadly marine nickname

White nativist defense of North American colonization has never depended upon "who got here first". And many of us prefer the older term for "white nativist": native American.





Anonymous said...

Acilius:

It used to puzzle people that Latin seems hardly to have been used at all outside Italy and Roman colonies until the Roman Empire began to fall, at which point it spread rapidly and demotic versions of it displaced local languages in much of the west

Why should it seem puzzling? Caesar reportedly could converse with the Gauls without too much difficulty, implying that his Latin was not far removed from whatever sort of proto-French/Celtic they were speaking.

Isn't it more likely that Latin was simply the Roman dialect of a more widespread language that already covered much of southwest Europe? And that the differentiation of French from Oc and Oil stems from Frankkish (Rhenish/Flemish) influence in northern France? The spread of Latin would then be like the spread of Hochdeutsch of Parisan French at the expense of a variety of lesser dialects that did not have political power. People retained the dialect in everyday speech, but used "proper" language in writing and formal speaking.

Anonymous said...

Acilius:

For example, the Anglo-Saxon invasion of 449 was probably a matter of a handful of warriors displacing the Celtic-speaking elite. Gildas,

How could the Saxons "invade" a land that was already called "The Saxon Coast" by the Romans? It seems like they were already there well before Gildas and his screed, and this would account for why they later came to be called Wessex, Sussex, and Essex.

Can you provide any real evidence of this "Celtic-speaking" elite in the lands of England outside Cornwall and Cumbria? I am not aware of any.

The significant contacts between southern England and Belgium/Holland/Frisia date back prior to Caesar's invasion, as evidenced by coin hordes and similar names of rulers and tribes, and imply that the most probable solution of the problem was that the "Saxons" of England were the same people as lived across the sea in Flanders, Holland, Frisia, Bremen, and Rhineland. The natural trade route between the Meuse, Rhine, and Mosel to the Thames still exists today, as well as the obvious line of contact between Dover and Calais (Kale)/Dunkirk(Duenkirchen) across the Channel.

The Celtic (really Gaelic) connection is up and down the Atlantic coast from Ireland, Highland Scotland, Cumbria, Wales, Cornwall on the west side of the isle to Brittany, Galacia in Spain, and Portugal where actual co-linguists are to be found), and where natural lines of north south ocean trade have again been maintained from ancient times, along with the obvious connection of megalithic monuments and similar looking (and genetic testing) people.

Anonymous said...

PIE Etymology:

it turns out that you can't actually distinguish the present-day Hungarians from their Slavic neighbors

Well, maybe if you reviewed the history of Hungary a bit more, you'd know why.

First of all, its not as though the Danube basin was uninhabited before the Hungarians showed up. A large part of it was part of Pannonia and was a Mark of Charlemagne's Germanic Holy Roman Empire, while in the east, the "Shepherds of the Romans" lived in what was Dacia and is now Transylvania. The Carpathians were a southern line for the true Slavs (R1a folk), who spilled over the top and down the southern valleys. The South Slavs (I2 folk) are obviiously not related by anything except an imposed language following the Slavic invasion of the Balkans post Justinian.

When the Magyars and Szekely arrived on the scene, those peoples would have made up the existing rural peasant population of which they became the noble rulers and warrior guards. The Magyar/Szekely would have made up around 5% or so of the population of the basin.

Now into this Germano-Slavic-Romance mix of peoples, inject the Ottoman invasion in the 1500's which lead to widespread flight of refugees and depopulation from everywhere except the highlands of Slovakia and Transylvania, and the sliver of Hungary over by Lake Balton still held by the Hapsburgs.

Upon reconquest, the Hapsburgs found a decimated land which required extensive resettlement. To accomplish this, the Hapsburgs flooded the basin with mobile peasant settlers Swabians, Bavarians/Austrians, Slovaks, Rusyns, Romanians, Croats, and Serbs and "Hungarian" speakers from western Hungary. This mix of peoples resettled in the 1650-1800 period were then subjected to a program of Magyarization post 1848 which saw the population of non-Hungarian speakers fall dramatically in many places. Especially among German inhabitants, who formed a majority of the cities of Ofen and Pest, for example, many became Hungarian speakers in hopes of rising in the civil administration and business world of Hapsburg Hungary. Many Hungarians bear the traces of this today with German last names but Hungarian "ethnicity".

So when you look at the genetics of "Hungarians", what you are really looking at is a mixed up population of Germans, Slavs, and Romanians speaking a Urgic language due to the influence of a conquering Magyar elite of nobles. Outside of the noble population or perhaps some isolates like the Szekely, its probably very difficult to find anythign resembling even half-blood Hungarians.

BurplesonAFB said...

Re: Chechens vs Swedes

They've been separate populations for thousands of years, there's no reason to belive there wasn't more selection towards intelligence in one environment vs the other. Indeed it was almost certainly the case.

Humans shape culture. Culture shapes humans.

andres said...

Chechens are not, at least linguistically, Indoeuropean. The Chechen language belong to the Caucasian languages, to which the Georgian language belong (along with many others languages spoken by small tribes in the Caucasus mountains). I do agree that the Indoeuropeans and the speakers of Caucasian languages had a relatively recent common ancestor, given the proximity of their probable original homelands (the Caucasus and the Russian steppes).

Anonymous said...

"The point I was getting at is that there is no other way to explain how two groups of people who share significant ancestry could have different IQ outcomes without chalking it up to non-hereditary reasons."


There are dozens of other ways to explain differences between people with identical *distant* ancestry if those two populations had different selection pressures in the more *recent* past.

For instance inbreeding can create inbreeding depression which lowers IQ a few points and inbreeding is a product of marriage forms and / or population density so if a population splits in two and one part ends up living up a very low population density mountain and the second part ends up living on a high population density fertile plain then their IQ might differ by a few points.

Indo-European ancestry is ancient ancestry - lots of time for different sub-populations to have had different selection pressures in the interim.

.

"So, for example, it looks like over 80% of the ancestral lines represented in the current population of the UK can be traced back to people who were in those islands 9000 years ago. That would imply that the current levels of immigration to the UK are probably the only true mass migration the islands have received in that time. Yet Britain has undergone several radical changes in language during that period."

Or a much simpler explanation is the various populations involved in all those earlier invasions were genetically almost identical - due to living in the same region of northwest Europe - but culturally and linguistically distinct.

.

"For example, the Anglo-Saxon invasion of 449 was probably a matter of a handful of warriors displacing the Celtic-speaking elite."

Or it probably wasn't like that at all and was exactly as the closest history from the time says it was i.e. years of Saxon sea raids on the east coast - likely depopulating the coast in exactly the same way as the med coast was depopulated centuries later by Moorish sea raids - and then the Romano-British king **invited** Saxons to settle on the east coast to protect it from other raiders - exactly like what happened centuries later with the Normans in Normandy - and then over the years those first Saxons brought their relatives over until they were in large enough numbers to start a war.

Very simple, fits the written history, fits the genetics, fits the language change etc.

.

"it turns out that you can't actually distinguish the present-day Hungarians from their Slavic neighbors. Huh, imagine that."

Somebody already explained that - in a word Ottomans - but separately the Hungarian example illustrates the point about genetic history. The gaps where y DNA, mtDNA or aDNA don't fit the history can provide great clues about what happened.

For example modern Europeans being mostly y DNA R & I and mtDNA H & U clearly implies that the initial farmer conquest of Europe was over-turned later but the farmers had some very beneficial genes that were strongly selected for afterwards via the surviving females.

gcochran said...


"So, for example, it looks like over 80% of the ancestral lines represented in the current population of the UK can be traced back to people who were in those islands 9000 years ago."

Untrue. As far as we can tell, all of the hunter-gatherers of Western Europe had U mtDNA. Today, in England, 16% do.

Anonymous said...

Can genetic studies on their own tell us anything about how the Roman empire spread its language in Europe? Let's say most history was forgotten and all you had was linguistic evidence, some scant archaeological evidence, and genetics. What would genetics add to this search for the origins of the Romans? How would you even start looking?

Willis said...

"Untrue. As far as we can tell, all of the hunter-gatherers of Western Europe had U mtDNA. Today, in England, 16% do."

It would be interesting to know how far back you could go to get that. At what point in time were 80% of the ancestors of today's Britons living there? 4000 years ago? 2000 years ago? 800 years ago?

Given their current insane rates of immigration, and the fecundity of some of those immigrant groups, I suspect that date is moving forward by decades per year.

Cheddar Man, who lived in GB about 9200 years ago, was U5. Three of the 20 people who were tested matched his haplogroup. Of course N=1 doesn't make a strong

Difference Maker said...

The Indo-Europeans are fascinating. And the incredible diversity of their ancestors is a demonstration of how while genes are important, environmental factors predominate over genetic factors.

This must be so, otherwise if Norwegians and Chechens have the same ancestors, how else could you explain the very different present day IQ scores and socioeconomic outcomes?

This raises the question, how would the Indo-European tribes do on IQ tests? How would the illiterate barbarian tribes who were the progenitors of today's high-IQ Northern European populations (clearly dumber than their ancient Greek and Roman neighbors) do?


Don't quit your day job.

If you feel the need to inflict on us more inane rantings, please be more respectful towards those who would review your work.

El Guapo said...

"Don't quit your day job."

You must be mistaken. This is the comments section of a blog.

Anonymous said...

Raising cattle probably preadapts for warfare through constant rustling. Valuable portable assets.


The Kshatriya warrior caste of India. Or the Great Cattle Raid of Cooley [Ireland].

Wealth measured for the lord in number of cattle he possessed.

And the group of men on horseback dedicated to protecting the cattle from rustling.

The ARMED man on horseback.

In the Hindu caste system the Kshatriya is analogous to the "arms" of a human being.. Arms wielding "arms".

And where ever the IE people move throughout the world, they travel in covered wagons, raise cattle, and have a group of men that herd and protect the cattle and are romanticized.

The cowboy, the gaucho, the jackeroo, the trekboer.

Our lineage is ancient and the same pattern of behavior repeats itself over and over.

Anonymous said...

According to the Spanish records there were about 50 million American Indians in Central America at the time Cortez landed in Mexico. Within 50 years 95 % were dead from a host of "white man" diseases. It is fair and reasonable to assume that about 95 % of those American Indians living in what is now the contiguous 48 states died in the same percentage? As to the total of American Indians living in what is now the contiguous 48 states when Columbus landed those figures range from about 1 million to 16 million with about 6 million generally considered to be most correct as best can be determined..

Anonymous said...

A lot of people like to use the word "stole" to describe how the United States acquired the land that is now the 48 contiguous states. "Stole" as gotten through negotiated treaty or outright purchase. Is that what is being talked about?

Anonymous said...

Lewis and Clark had been told during their ascent of the Missouri that upriver they would meet a "tribe that would not listen". The Sioux. Sioux of course has not other meaning than ENEMY. As told to Lewis and Clark by other American Indian tribes.

Anonymous said...

Two carts approach a bridge going in the opposite direction. One alone is able to pass. One is full and one is empty. Which should be given the right to pass? Ask yourself.