Sunday, April 21, 2024

Hittites from east.

Before commenting the deeper origins of Indo Europeans proposed in the new Lazaridis 2024 paper I want to speak about the origins of Anatolians. Since the advent of paleogenetic it became clear that they can't be native to plain Anatolia. They could be either from east or from north-west. Since 2018 the accumulating data was giving clear preference to the eastern origins. From historic Armenia. But a doubt was still persisting, because the Balkanian route was not fully investigated. In 2023 Penske et al. has found a migration from steppe to eastern Balkans before Yamna around 4000BC but they didn't even discuss the possibility that they could be related to Hittites. It's because their autosomes were rapidly diluted having a limited impact in Bulgaria yet alone in Anatolia. Also the Y DNA associated to this migration the I2-L699 was missing from inland ancient Anatolian samples.

While a R1b-V1636 was found in Bronze Age Gaziantep quite close temporaly and geographically to the kingdom Armi mentioned in Eblaite texts around 2500bc. Hittites names have been discovered in this kingdom recently.
The V1636 was popular in CLV cline stretching from Caucasus to Lower Volga and was found in ancient Malatya and Sevan basin also.
Besides this R1b other haplotypes found in Bronze Age Anatolia also show self-evident eastern affiliation.
The J1-Z1828 who's subbranch BY94 can be an Iron Age Luwian lineage like the J2- L70 which itself is derived from the L25 a haplotype from east.
A J2-Z6065 which was found in Masis Blue in Neolithic Armenia. We have also bunch of of J2-M67 and G2-M406, even though this latter is related to Hattic people so it can't be interpreted as a prove of Hittites from east.
In conclusion all ancient Y DNA that we have in inland Anatolia do have an eastern origin, from historic Armenia and around. One of them is further from north of Caucasus region. Their autosomes are also shifted to east compared to the preceding periods.
One exception is the I2-P78 from MBA Yassi Tepe near Izmir, which is clearly from Mycenean Greece, so this person was almost certainly a Greek people representative who probably settled in western Anatolian coasts after the 2000BC. They are mentioned in Hittite texts as Ahhiyawa.
In sum we can now say with high certitude that Indo-European languages were spoken in Armenian Highlands at minimum the last 6300 years. The 4300BC is not a random number it's the date of the start of Late Chalcolithic associated with Chaff faced ware which had a tremendous impact on southern Anatolia. But not much on northern Anatolia where Hattic related people were settled since more earlier times. Probably since 5800BC.
But that would require another thread which I will do the next time.

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