Vikings and Celtic peoples

21 Mar 2010

The Copenhagen Post March 19th (www.cphpost.dk/news/ reports on a Danish analysis of DNA from a Viking cemetery near a 1000 year old church in southern Greenland that shows a strong Celtic bloodline, according to science website www.videnskab.dk . The settlers were Nordic but they had mixed origins - or genes. These were Scandinavian and Celtic (from Britain and Ireland). The colonies in Greenland were first established in AD985 and the skeletons under study date from shortly afterwards. The early inhabitants of the Faroes and Iceland also had pronounced Celtic genes - so much so it was speculated that the Irish had colonised Iceland before the Vikings. However, it seems Viking raiders took women along with other loot after attacking settlements in Scotland, Ireland and other parts of Britain, and the genes entered the bloodline that way. Presumably, raiding parties were all male affairs and women would have been a desirable commodity.