Yay, Neanderthals!

neanderthal (plural neanderthals)

1. (pejorative) A primitive, boorish person or a person with old-fashioned ideas or who opposes change.
2. A specimen of the now extinct species Homo neanderthalensis.

Boo! Hiss! Thumbs down on the first definition. Don’t you dis my ancestors!

When our ancestors first migrated out of Africa around 60,000 years ago, they were not alone. At that time, at least two other species of hominid cousins walked the Eurasian landmass—Neanderthals and Denisovans. As our modern human ancestors migrated through Eurasia, they encountered the Neanderthals and interbred. Because of this, a small amount of Neanderthal DNA was introduced into the modern human gene pool.


A team of scientists comparing the full genomes of the two species concluded that most Europeans and Asians have between 1 to 2 percent Neanderthal DNA. Indigenous sub-Saharan Africans have none, or very little Neanderthal DNA because their ancestors did not migrate through Eurasia.
Why am I Neanderthal?

The above article says “most” Europeans and Asians, this one says everyone of European descent is bound to have some Neanderthal genes. I’m half Swedish, a quarter Irish, and a quarter German, so that’s me. How cool is that? 🙂

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7 Responses to Yay, Neanderthals!

  1. Ah, well, that’s evolution for you! I guess I’m none too!
    Still the Lucky Few´s last blog post ..A Perfect Day for Picking Apples

  2. Audra E says:

    I met someone yesterday who said she was 100% Irish,and that meant she had DNA from all the many, many peoples who’ve been through, conquered, inhabited that island. So, Jean, are you overlooking many of your ancestors?

  3. Cathy in NZ says:

    this ancestor question just came up on our new “clan f/b” page about someone’s mother (long dead) looking definitely a different race…it’s long been thought that some of us should get our DNA done.

  4. Typo! I meant, “I guess I’m one too.” in first comment.
    Still the Lucky Few´s last blog post ..Are Things Really Bad, and Getting Worse?

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