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No Etruscan Link to Modern Tuscans

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Author Topic: No Etruscan Link to Modern Tuscans  (Read 216 times)
Stacie Firkus
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« on: July 13, 2009, 12:36:03 am »

Sunday, July 5, 2009
No Etruscan Link to Modern Tuscans

An intriguing article, and what I appreciate is that the author noted the experts indicated that their findings in no way indicate that there is NO LINK between the ancient Etruscans and modern-day residents of the same area, but only perhaps the DNA evidence has been so diluted we can no longer trace it with our current technologies. Unfortunately, the title and sub-title to this article are VERY misleading!

2009-07-03 17:06
No Etruscan link to modern Tuscans
Study shows genetic discontinuity with Bronze Age people

(ANSA) - Florence, July 3 - The current population of Tuscany is not descended from the Etruscans, the people that lived in the region during the Bronze Age, a new Italian study has shown. [If you read on, you will see that this is actually a mis-statement of what is currently known.]

Researchers at the universities of Florence, Ferrara, Pisa, Venice and Parma discovered the genealogical discontinuity by testing samples of mitochondrial DNA from remains of Etruscans and people who lived in the Middle Ages (between the 10th and 15th centuries) as well as from people living in the region today.

While there was a clear genetic link between Medieval Tuscans and the current population, the relationship between modern Tuscans and their Bronze Age ancestors could not be proven, the study showed. [But what about a link between the Bronze Age Tuscans and the Medieval Tuscans? That was not addressed in this article.]

''Some people have hypothesised that the most ancient DNA sequences, those from the Etruscan era, could contain errors or have been contaminated but tests conducted with new methods exclude this,'' said David Caramelli of Florence University and Guido Barbujani of Ferrara University.

''The most simple explanation is that the structure of the Tuscan population underwent important demographic changes in the first millennium before Christ,'' they said.
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Stacie Firkus
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« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2009, 12:36:31 am »

''Immigration and forced migration have diluted the Etruscan genetic inheritance so much as to make it difficult to recognise''.

The scientific data does not necessarily mean that the Etruscans died out, the researchers said.


Teams from Florence and Ferrara universities are working to identify whether traces of the Etruscans' genetic inheritance may still exist in people living in isolated locations in the region.

The new study is published online by the scientific journal Molecular Biology and Evolution.
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Stacie Firkus
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« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2009, 12:37:07 am »

The Etruscans lived mainly between the rivers Tiber and Arno in modern-day Umbria, Lazio and Tuscany, in the first millennium BC.

By the sixth century BC they had become the dominant force in central Italy, but repeated attacks from Gauls and Syracusans later forced them into an alliance with the embryonic Roman state, which gradually absorbed Etruscan civilization.

Most of what is known about the Etruscans derives from archaeology as the few accounts passed down by Roman historians tend to be hostile, portraying them as gluttonous and lecherous.

This problem is compounded by the fact that Etruscan cities were built almost entirely of wood and so vanished quickly, leaving little for archaeologists to investigate.
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As far as I know, we have not yet been able to decipher the Etruscan language, although we do understand some individual words. The problem, as I understand it, is that there is a lack of long enough texts to be able to apply modern-day algorithyms, etc., that are now used to decipher a language. Another issue seems to be whether Etruscan is related to the Indo-European family of languages, or not.

http://goddesschess.blogspot.com/2009/07/no-etruscan-link-to-modern-tuscans.html
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