and Georgian Anthriopology [draft]
Friedrich Blumenbach (1752-1840),
Member of Russian Academy of Sciences,
the German anthropologist, in his work “De Generis Humani
Varietate Nativa” (On the Natural Variety of Mankind, 1775)
based mainly on cranial measurements, called light-skinned people
as Caucasian. Blumenbach's definition cites two reasons for his
choice--the maximal beauty of people from this small region, and
the probability that humans were first created in this area –
Blumenbach believed that Homo Sapiens had been created in a single
region and had then spread over the globe. Because of Blumenbach's
obsession with Georgian "beauty," the word
"Caucasian" became a "scientific" synonym for
variety. I have taken the name of this variety from Mount
Caucasus, both because its neighborhood, and especially its
southern slope, produces the most beautiful race of men, I mean
the Georgian; ...That stock displays...the most beautiful form of
the skull, from which, as from a mean and primeval type, the
others diverge...Besides, it is white in color, which we may
fairly assume to be the primitive color of mankind and because ...
in that region, if anywhere, it seems we ought with the greatest
probability to place the autochthones of mankind.»
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(45,000) is oldest among “sisters” (4 mutations) - is she
“sister” or mother (of whom)
(25,000) is twice older (2 mutations) than other “sisters” -
is she “sister” or mother (of whom)
According to Oxford's study, the
seven matriarchal groups are classified as follows:
Helena - a clan which lived in
the Pyrenees some 12,000 years ago. This is the most common of all
clans in Great Britain and the United States, but members of this
group are now present in all European countries.
Jasmine - people of Syria who
migrated across Anatolia, into Greece, and eventually into Spain
- a clan which occupied what is not Venice about 10,000 years ago.
Most of this clan lives in the Alps today.
Tara - a clan of Tuscany which lived about
17,000 years ago. This clan is believed to have ventured across
northern Europe and eventually crossed the English Channel.
Ursula - users of stone tools,
occupied all parts of Europe, but lived in Northern Greece
approximately 45,000 years ago. (In 1998, the skeleton found in
Europe known as Cheddar Man was shown to belong to this clan.)
Velda - a clan that lived in
Spain about 17,000 years ago, which today, are believed to be the
Lapps, or Saami of northern Finland and Norway.
Xenia - the
most mysterious of clans, known to have lived about 25,000 years
ago in one of the remote wooded valleys of the Caucasus
Mountains on the eastern edge of the Black Sea. These people
spread East and West, but not only are found all over Europe, but
in North America as well. It is believed the North America clan
traveled across Asia across the dry Bering land.
The Seven European Daughters of Eve
matriarchal groups correspond to Dr. Wallace's lineages above, and
were given names by by Prof. Sykes:
Helena: This clan lived in the ice-capped
Pyrenees. As the climate warmed, Helena's descendants trekked
northward to what is now England, some 12,000 years ago. Members
of this group are now present in all European countries.
Jasmine: Her people had a
relatively happy life in Syria, where they farmed wheat and raised
domestic animals. Jasmine's descendants traveled throughout
Europe, spreading their agricultural innovations with them. [The
main exception is Jasmine where the modern distribution of the
clan follows the two main routes into Europe taken by the earliest
farmers - one along the Mediterranean coast and up the Atlantic
seaboard to western Britain, the other along the river basins of
central Europe to the Baltic and the North Sea. Once again Jasmine
is exceptional. Her clan is very rare in the Basque country.]
Katrine: Members of this group
lived in Venice 10,000 years ago. Today most of Katrine's clan
lives in the Alps.
Sykes' maternal ancestry goes back to this group, which settled in
Tuscany 17,000 years ago. Descendants ventured across northern
Europe and eventually crossed the English Channel.
Ursula: Users of stone tools,
Ursula's clan members drifted across all of Europe. So Ursula is
the oldest of the seven because her clan has accumulated the most
mutations and Jasmine is the youngest because her clan shows the
Originally from Spain, Valda and her immediate descendants lived
17,000 years ago. Later relatives moved into northern Finland and
Her people lived in the Caucasus Mountains 25,000 years
ago. Just before the Ice Age, this clan spread across Europe, and
even reached the Americas. [As Dr. Wallace discovered, the X
pattern is a rare European lineage and is also among the northern
Native Americans such as the Ojibwa and Sioux.]
( pl. same or Hurris) a member of a people,
originally from Armenia, who settled in northern
Mesopotamia and Syria during the 3rd-2nd millennium bc and were
later aborbed by the Hittites and Assyrians. (See also Mitanni.)
Hittite & Assyrian Harri, Hurri
The Oxford English Reference Dictionary, ©
Oxford University Press 1996
A people living in E Anatolia and N Mesopotamia during the 2nd
millennium bc. The Hurrians probably originated in the
Armenian mountains before their expansion. Their language, which is extinct, was neither
Indo-European nor Semitic, but may be related to Georgian
and the Caucasian languages. It
is largely known from cuneiform tablets from Hattusas, the capital
of the Hittites, whose civilization the Hurrians greatly
influenced. There was never a Hurrian empire, but the powerful
kingdom of Mitanni (1550-1400 bc) was largely Hurrian in
population. See also Nuzi
The Macmillan Encyclopedia 2001, © Market
House Books Ltd 2000
Nefertiti (14th century BC)
Wife of King Amenhotep IV of Egypt. Probably born in Mitanni, an empire based in what is now northern Iraq,
Nefertiti became the chief wife of the intellectual Egyptian ruler
Amenhotep IV (reigned about 1379-1362 BC). She bore him six
daughters but no son. His reign was distinguished by a religious
revolution, strongly supported by Nefertiti, that renounced the
established pantheon of gods in favour of a single, supreme deity,
Aton. Aton, represented by a sun disc, was revered as the source
of life and the bounties of nature.
The Penguin Biographical Dictionary of
Women, © Market House Books Ltd 1998
An ancient Hurrian city SW of Kirkuk (N Iraq). Nuzi flourished in
the 15th century bc before being absorbed into the Assyrian
Empire. Excavations here in the 1920s revealed a prosperous
trading centre with archives detailing legal, commercial, and
The Macmillan Encyclopedia 2001, © Market House Books
Urartu (biblical name: Ararat)
A kingdom flourishing between about 850 and 650 bc in E Turkey.
The inhabitants, of Hurrian stock, made their capital at Van (ancient
Tushpa). Their metalwork was famous, examples even reaching
Etruscan Italy. Urartu was frequently at war with neighbouring
The Macmillan Encyclopedia 2001, © Market House Books
Mitanni n. & adj.
n. ( pl. same)
1 a member of the predominant people of a largely Hurrian
kingdom centred on the Khabur and Upper Euphrates rivers which
flourished in the 15th and early 14th centuries bc.
2 the language of this people.
adj. of or relating to this people or their language.
Mitannian adj. & n.Mitanni or Hurrian
The Oxford English Reference Dictionary, © Oxford University
A people speaking a non-Semitic language and civilization native
to Sumer in the 4th millennium bc. The Sumerians were a hybrid
stock speaking an agglutinative language related structurally to
Turkish, Hungarian, Finnish, and several Caucasian
dialects. As the first
historically attested civilization they are credited with the
invention of cuneiform writing, the sexagesimal system of
mathematics, and the socio-political institution of the city-state
with bureaucracies, legal codes, division of labour, and a money
economy. Their art, literature, and theology had a profound
cultural and religious influence on the rest of Mesopotamia and
beyond, which continued long after the Sumerian demise c. 2,000
bc, as the prototype of Akkadian, Hurrian, Canaanite, Hittite, and eventually, biblical
literature. Two of their main cities were Ur and Lagash.
Oxford Paperback Encyclopedia, © Oxford University
Study Says Ancient Humans Followed Second Route
By Joseph B. Verrengia
The Associated Press
Nov. 30, 2000 — Scientists examining
hereditary material in cells suggest that modern humans followed a
migration wave from Africa to Asia more than 50,000 years ago
after an earlier exodus to the Mediterranean and Greece.
Blood samples of people from east
Africa and India showed close genetic similarities that indicate a
common African ancestor, according to a research team from the
University of Padua in Italy.
The Italian study is reported in the December issue
of the journal Nature Genetics.
The researchers examined mitochondria, units outside
of the cell’s nucleus that act as a cell’s energy source. They
have their own genetic material—passed only by the mother from
generation to generation—which lets scientists trace ancestry
between geographically distant human populations.
Blood Relations in Asia
In the Italian study, researchers
reported that closely related genetic sequences were found in high
frequency in blood samples from people in Ethiopia, the Arabian
Peninsula and India. The same genetic makers were not found in
blood samples from Middle East populations.
The first, and older, human migration route out of
Africa is believed to have extended northward around the eastern
Mediterranean and Greece more than 100,000 years ago.
Mitochondrial DNA clues were reported
in the mid-1980s as scientists speculated on the existence of an
African “Eve”, from whom modern humans descended. Since then,
the older, northern migration route has been bolstered by fossil
discoveries of modern humans bones from the same time period in
the Middle East.
mitochondrial studies of modern humans are separate from
anthropological digs establishing that extinct ancestors of humans
inhabited Africa 4 million years ago. Larger-brained tool-making
human ancestors are believed to have left Africa and spread to
Asia and Europe 1.8 million years ago.
1999 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material
may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Possible Pre-Flood Artifacts
By WARREN E. LEARY
[from The New York Times]
სხვა რამეც (მათ
WASHINGTON, Sept. 12 — Scientists
said today that they had discovered remnants of human habitation
under the Black Sea that they believe is the first proof that
people thrived along an ancient shoreline before it was inundated
by a great flood thousands of years ago.
Dr. Robert D. Ballard, the undersea explorer whose
robotic devices have resolved many underwater mysteries, including
the resting place of the Titanic, said an expedition he is leading
had discovered a well-preserved structure that might be thousands
of years old 12 miles off the coast of Turkey, near Sinop.
An underwater robot, scouting about
300 feet below the surface two days ago, found a rectangular area
measuring about 12 feet by 45 feet on which there appeared to be a
collapsed wood and clay structure.
"Artifacts at the site are clearly well
preserved, with carved wooden beams, wooden branches and stone
tools collapsed amongst the mud matrix of the structure," Dr.
expedition, sponsored by the National Geographic Society and
others, is part of a project to survey the coastal waters of
northern Turkey for signs of human settlement around the time of a
great flood. Some scholars believe that such a flood inspired the
biblical story of Noah; it may also be the source of the flood
tale in the Babylonian story of Gilgamesh.
Using sonar equipment, the expedition has mapped
large areas of the coastline and found hundreds of potential
targets to examine more closely with the underwater robots
operated from the research ship Northern Horizon.
In a telephone interview from the
ship, Dr. Ballard said the site near Sinop could be the first of
many in the area that could answer questions about the habits and
lifestyles of a little-known ancient culture suddenly uprooted and
forced to flee by flooding water.
"Now that we know what these sites look like on
sonar, now that we recognize their signatures, we're regrouping to
continue the search," he said, noting that the target area
was about 200 square miles of what would have been livable terrain
before the flood. Researchers have already identified a second
site seven miles away. Pieces of ceramics suggest that it, too,
may have been an inhabited area, he said.
Dr. Fredrik T. Hiebert of the University of
Pennsylvania, chief archaeologist on the project, also was
enthusiastic about the find, occurring two weeks into the
five-week mission. "This is a discovery of world
importance," Dr. Hiebert said from the ship. "We have
the first site with direct evidence of human occupation on the old
"Now we can
say there were people living around the Black Sea when it was a
freshwater lake before it was flooded."
Dr. Hiebert said the underwater
structure closely resembled the wood-and-clay "wattle and
daub" buildings still common in the area. "This style is
distinctively Black Sea," he said.
"This discovery will begin to rewrite the
history of cultures in this key area between Europe, Asia and the
ancient Middle East," he said.
Dr. Ballard said earlier studies of seashells from
the area helped to date the underwater coastline. Shells from an
extinct type of freshwater creature are all 7,000 years old or
older, and shells from saltwater shellfish date from 6,500 years
"We know that
there was a sudden and dramatic change from a freshwater lake to a
saltwater sea 7,000 years ago," he said, "And we know
that as a result of that flood a vast amount of land went
William B. F. Ryan and Dr. Walter C. Pitman 3rd, two geologists at
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory in Palisades, N.Y., a branch of
Columbia University, speculated in their 1997 book, "Noah's
Flood" (Simon & Schuster), that melting European glaciers
at the end of an ice age unleashed a great flood that changed a
small freshwater lake into the saltwater Black Sea.
According to the book, melting
glaciers raised the level of the Mediterranean, causing water to
break through the narrow Bosporus and rapidly flood the lake.
Water poured in so rapidly, the Columbia researchers said, that it
would have widened the surface of the lake by as much as a mile a
day, submerging the original shoreline and causing any population
Dr. Ryan said
in an interview that he was thrilled to hear of Dr. Ballard's
discovery and was surprised that evidence of human habitation on
the old shore had been found so quickly.
Dr. Ryan likened the discovery to finding Pompeii,
the ancient city buried by Mount Vesuvius. "Peel away the ash
of Vesuvius and you see life on the day of the eruption," he
said. "Here you have Neolithic life on the day of the
said that no artifacts had been removed from the first site and
that it would not be disturbed until it was thoroughly mapped. The
first priority, he said, is finding and mapping more sites.
"We're just beginning our work
and understanding what we have here," he said. "At some
point, after we fulfill all the requirements of mapping the site,
we hope to recover some artifacts to learn what kind of people
Jerome L. Hall, president of the Institute of Nautical Archaeology
at Texas A&M University, praised Dr. Ballard's work.
"According to the scientific
method, you formulate a hypothesis, in this case the flood
spillage theory for the Black Sea, and then you test it," Dr.
Hall said. "One test is finding remnants of a civilization
that was affected and looking for evidence to support the flood
theory. This is how you do good science."
Signs of First Human Migration Are Found
By JOHN NOBLE WILFORD
discovery with profound implications for the study of early human
history, scientists digging in the republic of Georgia have found
1.7-million-year-old fossil human skulls that show clear signs of
African ancestry and so may represent the species that first
migrated out of Africa.
relatively complete skulls, being described today in the journal
Science, begin to put a face, in a sense, to the ancestors who
responded to opportunity and necessity by leaving Africa and
spreading out over much of the rest of the world. Many
paleoanthropologists hailed the discovery as a major advance in
their field, and said the skulls were probably the most ancient
undisputed human fossils outside Africa.
the first good physical evidence we have of the identity of the
first emigrants out of Africa," said Dr. Ian Tattersall, a
paleontologist and evolutionary biologist at the American Museum
of Natural History in New York City.
international discovery team, led by Dr. Leo Gabunia of the
Georgia National Academy of Sciences, concluded that the age and
skeletal characteristics of the skulls linked them to the early
human species Homo ergaster, who lived from 1.9 million to 1.4
million years ago and who some researchers think is the African
version of Homo erectus. The specimens were said to bear less
resemblance to the typical Asian Homo erectus.
"We suggest that these hominids may represent
the species that initially dispersed from Africa and from which
the Asian branch of H. erectus was derived," the discoverers
said in their report.
findings contradicted the theory that human ancestors left Africa
soon after they invented better stone axes and other tools of what
archaeologists call the Acheulean culture. The more than 1,000
stone tools found in the sediments with the two skulls were all
pre-Acheulean, crudely chipped cobbles that had been made since
human ancestors began knapping stone tools about 2.5 million years
earliest tools of the Acheulean style did not appear in Africa
until 1.6 million years ago, and about 100,000 years later outside
Africa, in Israel. By contrast, the discovery team reported, the
tools found with the Georgian skulls resembled tools found in the
Olduvai Gorge of Tanzania and dated at about 1.8 million years.
So it was not technology, but biology or environment,
that presumably set human ancestors off on their migrations,
scientists now say.
Susan C. Anton, a paleoanthropologist at the University of Florida
who was a member of the discovery team, said that by this time
human ancestors had become more carnivorous and their diets pushed
them to expand their home range to match the wider ranges of the
animals they preyed on.
the appearance of Homo, we see bigger bodies that require more
energy to run, and therefore need these higher quality sources of
protein as fuel," Dr. Anton said of the adaptation to
as early human ancestors had smaller bodies and brains, Dr.
Tattersall said, they lived mainly on plants and confined
themselves to a limited range at the edge of forests, not too deep
in or too exposed far out on the savanna. Once they had stronger
bodies and high-protein meat diets, they were able to spread out
geographically and ecologically.
Alan Walker, a paleoanthropologist at Pennsylvania State
University who specializes in searching for human fossils in
Kenya, said he agreed with the interpretation of the Georgian
skulls. "The new fossils look exactly like early Homo skulls
from Kenya," Dr. Walker said.
the implications of the new findings for human dispersal from
Africa supported an idea he and his wife, Dr. Pat Shipman, an
anthropologist, proposed in 1989. They suggested that once the
more apelike australopithecines evolved into the genus Homo and
became carnivorous, they were forced to expand their home
are restricted to where the plants are that they eat," Dr.
Walker said. "Carnivores are not so restricted. Meat is meat,
and you often have to travel far to find it."
The two skulls were uncovered last summer at Dmanisi,
on a slope of the Caucasus Mountains 55 miles southwest of
Tbilisi, the Georgian capital. At the same site in 1991,
paleontologists found a jawbone of what was identified as a Homo
erectus. Finding the craniums -- one of a young adult male and the
other of a female adolescent -- has seemed to quiet skeptics who
had disputed the jawbone dating.
discovery team included scientists from France, Germany and the
United States, as well as Georgia. Dr. Carl C. Swisher 3rd of the
Berkeley Geochronology Center in California determined the
approximate age of the skulls by geochemical and paleomagnetic
analysis of the sediments and the presence of small rodent bones
of a well-established age that were found with the human fossils.
Dr. Philip Rightmire, a specialist in Homo erectus at
the State University of New York at Binghamton, said he was
impressed by the new discovery's implications for "a pretty
quick, really wholesale dispersal of these people, along with
other animals," from the time the new species emerged in East
is fossil evidence that by the time the individuals the Dmanisi
skulls belonged to were living in Georgia, others of their species
had already traveled as far east as Java in southeast Asia.
Unlike some scientists, Dr. Rightmire classifies the
African ergaster together with the Asian erectus in the same
species. To him and many others, they are regional variants of the
scientists, often referred to as "splitters" and
including discoverers of the Georgian skulls, look at the same
fossils and see distinct species in Africa and Asia, with the
Dmanisi fossils much more closely related to its African roots.
In their report, the discoverers said, "The
Dmanisi site suggests a rapid dispersal from Africa into the
Caucasus via the Levantine corridor, apparently followed by a much
later colonization of adjacent European areas."
It was somewhat surprising, the discoverers said, to
find that the Dmanisi fossils bore so little similarity to later
close to the boundary between Europe and Asia, Georgia might have
been a crossroads of dispersal to the west in Europe as well as to
southern and eastern Asia.
said the discovery left unchanged current interpretations of the
origin of anatomically modern humans in Africa some 100,000 years