Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2010-02 > 1266286565

Subject: Re: [DNA] Sorting the Irish via DNA
Date: Tue, 16 Feb 2010 02:16:05 +0000 (UTC)
In-Reply-To: <>

I think there are probably many more Irish modals that have been discovered and have not become well-known, and I think it is interesting to ponder about the reasons for that. I think the four that you mention are well-known because they are hard to miss. There are large numbers of men in these groups, and I think that the majority of them have lots of matches. That makes it easy to identify the recent mutations in their lines and the key marker values that they share with their matches. I'm no expert on Irish history, so I can't say how well the composition of these groups matches with the claimed linkages to famous historical or legendary figures, or whether the groups that do include famous lines also include other lines with an older connection, but it certainly seems to me that these large groups probably are large because they included lines with the advantages of high social status.

It would not shock me to find that there are other somewhat similar clusters that have not been recognized, but most will probably be smaller. There may be some that descend from lines that expanded earlier and then shrank or stagnated, so that most members do not have a lot of matches making it easy to discern their shared off-modal markers. There are probably some who are just a little too close to the Western Atlantic modal haplotype to be recognized easily. I suppose that modal haplotype itself originated with the expansion of a clade a long time ago.

Just as an example, here is another Irish modal. I wasn't able to recognize this cluster until last year, mostly because there were very few men in it with extended haplotypes. The DYS578=10 really helps, and if I had been savvy enough to look at Leo Little's charts showing the distributions of allele values within haplogroups, I might have realized that the DYS607=17 or 18 is really unusual and along with the DYS393=14 and DYS442=13, makes the group recognizable on 37 markers. There must be lots of little groups like this one that have not been easy to recognize or have not made as much of a splash because they are so small.

There are probably multiple reasons that only a small number of Irish modals have become well-known, and I have only touched on some of them. It's smart to think about those reasons.


----- Original Message -----
Sent: Sunday, February 14, 2010 5:17:40 PM GMT -05:00 US/Canada Eastern
Subject: Re: [DNA] Sorting the Irish via DNA

I have to wonder why only four Irish modals have been discovered to date,
covering basically the UI Neill and Connachta (m222), the Eoghanachta
(Irish type II), the Dal Cas (Irish Type III) and the Leinster cluster (Lagin)It
may not be a coincidence that these groups were the most important
chieftains in the four provinces of Ireland as described in a history of Ireland I
read recently. Nothing much is known of the early origins of the Dal Cas
but O'Rahilly considered the Eoghanachta, Lagin and Connachta as recent
arrivals in Ireland at least compared to the known earlier population groups,
prominent among them the Erainn and Cruithin. No doubt there were many more
but history has not recorded their names. I have seen one other Irish
modal listed but it doesn't seem to match much of anything.

Why would this be?


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