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Mon Jun 22, 2020, 07:14 PM

DNA from ancient Irish tomb reveals incest and an elite class that ruled early farmers




By Andrew CurryJun. 17, 2020 , 11:00 AM

Twenty-five kilometers north of Dublin, a masterpiece of Stone Age engineering rises from the hills: a circular structure 12 meters high, almost the area of a U.S. football field, and made up of more than 200,000 tons of earth and stone. Some of the first farmers to arrive in Ireland erected this monument, called Newgrange, nearly 1000 years before Stonehenge or Egypt’s first pyramids were built. Archaeologists have assumed it was a ceremonial site and communal tomb—an expression of an egalitarian society.

Now, DNA from a middle-aged man buried in 3200 B.C.E. at the center of this mighty mound suggests otherwise. His genes indicate he had parents so closely related they must have been brother and sister or parent and child.

Across cultures, incest is almost always taboo—except in inbred royal families. Its genetic traces at Newgrange suggest social hierarchy took hold in Ireland earlier than thought, according to a new study. “Maybe we’ve been arguing too far that [these people were] egalitarian,” says Jessica Smyth, an archaeologist at University College Dublin who was not part of the team.

The newly sequenced genomes from Newgrange and other Irish tombs are part of a wider re-evaluation of the Neolithic era, which is marked by the advent of agriculture. Over the past decade, researchers have used ancient DNA to track a slow-motion, 5000-year expansion of ancient farmers from Anatolia across Europe. The Neolithic settlers who arrived in Ireland around 3700 B.C.E. were the westernmost limit of that expansion.

More:
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/06/dna-ancient-irish-tomb-reveals-incest-and-elite-class-ruled-early-farmers

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Reply DNA from ancient Irish tomb reveals incest and an elite class that ruled early farmers (Original post)
Judi Lynn Jun 2020 OP
FirstLight Jun 2020 #1
Judi Lynn Jun 2020 #3
flamin lib Jun 2020 #2
Judi Lynn Jun 2020 #4

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Mon Jun 22, 2020, 07:16 PM

1. Fascinating

Definitely bookmarked!!! Thanks for sharing

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #1)

Wed Jun 24, 2020, 07:18 AM

3. Thanks, First Light. n/t

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Mon Jun 22, 2020, 07:54 PM

2. What? The Trump family goes that far back?? nt

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Response to flamin lib (Reply #2)

Wed Jun 24, 2020, 07:20 AM

4. No doubt they've been stealing from the human race forever. It seems they will never go away. n/t

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