GENEALOGY-DNA-L ArchivesArchiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2005-02 > 1109019535
From: "Martha" <>
Subject: RE: [DNA] Basque phenotype
Date: Mon, 21 Feb 2005 14:58:55 -0600
No one has mentioned actually knowing anyone who is Basque, or being of
Basque heritage on this list, so I thought that maybe a first hand
knowledge of the phenotype that some of them possess might be of help in
this discussion. I'm not saying that ALL Basques are of the same type,
but am just sharing my non-scientific observations...
Some years ago I was employed by the U of AL Med. Center in B'ham,AL as
a research tech in the division of Dermatology. Our project director for
a couple of years was Dr. Raphael Montes, who was Basque. He and his
family were living in the U.S. but intended to return home at a later
time to practice medicine.
My description of Dr. Montes isn't all that scientific, but from actual
He was of a trim, compact build, about 5'9" tall; of very light, almost
porcelain white complexion, and he had dark brown eyes, as did his wife
and children, whom we saw often. Though not curly, Dr. Montes & his
family had black hair, with a tightly waved, but not kinky, natural
appearance. His nose was well proportioned to his face, fairly long,
aquiline and slightly hooked in the Gallic manner. The back of his head
appeared a little flattened, rather than rounded from top to bottom.
Another physical trait rather noticeable to us at the time was that Dr.
Montes' head was a little large for his body size, which most of us at
work (rightly or wrongly) attributed to his higher than normal degree of
intelligence. He was very proud of being Basque and would speak of his
heritage proudly, making sure those of us who were native to the U.S.
knew that he was NOT of the typical Spanish heritage, but came from the
mountains of France where the culture was much older than of the rest of
Spain. I speak a little conversational Spanish, but had trouble
conversing w/ Dr. Montes at the time bc/ he had a definite accent that
was neither Castillian (as I learned it), nor any other Spanish dialect
I've ever heard since.
I know that this isn't a 'scientific' approach to determining anything
about the true ethnic phenotype for a people group...just using one
family as a model. However, from it and several pictures from Basque
links posted online, you can get somewhat of a picture of what I believe
to be the general appearance of many Basque people.
How this might, or might not, compare to the phenotype of Irish people
from Connaught, I have no knowledge.
Does anyone else on the list?
"ERIN GO BRAUGH"