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Them Old Boys

11 June 2023
Anthropology, Evolution, Genetics

At https://phys.org/news/2023-06-lingering-effects-neanderthal-dna-modern.html … recent discoveries show that Neanderthal genes comprise up to 4 per cent of the genome of modern humans. They add, who migrated Out of Africa [modern humans]. This add-on is a consensus belief, a bit like an article on geology requiring a reference to modern global warming/ climate change, in order to get published. Irrelevant as it may be, as it is primarily a theory that has inadequately been tested, these topics always have that add-on, lest the great unwashed forgets. The gist of the  article revolves around a new suite of computerised genetic tools in order to address the genetic effects of interbreeding. This is another assumption, in order to explain away that odd 4 per cent. The game was given away last year, however, as Neanderthal dna was absent from skeletal material used in a study. In fact, prior to the disappearance of the Neanderthals, their genes were dominated by modern human dna. One may wonder if they have it wrong – the 4 per cent had an even older origin, prior to the Neanderthals?

At https://phys.org/news/2023-06-ancient-genomes-farming-africa-ignited.html … genetic analysis is creeping into all kinds of studies. In this one, human remains from Morocco, reveal that early farming was introduced by migrants from the  eastern Mediterranean. They are said to be similar to those migrants bringing the Neolithic into Europe. That is the gist of what  I took from reading the press release – local people, in Morocco, adopted the practise.

There were in fact two migratory surges. The first one is dated around 7400 years ago, about 5400BC, and the second, around 4,300 years ago. The local hunter gatherers had lived isolated from the outside world for 8000 years, we are told, or longer. In other words, since the end of the Late Glacial Maximum. The two waves of migration  seem to correspond with the aftermath of two catastrophic events of some kind, one around 6000BC and the other around 4300BC. The latter date corresponds with the arrival of Neolithic people from the North European Plain, into the UK, and the first one with a migration through the Mediterranean basin from the Levant. The latter also coincided with a shift of farmers from Anatolia into the Balkans, and beyond, ultimately reaching Poland and the Low Countires. Genetics fits snugly here into a catastrophist model.

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