Sunday, September 25, 2022

Norman after all?

Well, the new Anglo-Saxon paper is out and it is another notch in the belt for the ancient historians.

 I'll be watching to see what the refined quantities of post-Saxon French turn out to be.


Eleanor and Henry Plantagenet

I've thought for a long time estimates on French settlement were too low.  After all, how can two countries be politically unified for so long without significant mobility?



  1. Alternatively, since the paper makes clear that the "French Iron Age" component is present in some of the earliest samples, perhaps this was a component already present in Roman or even late Iron age Britain. The distribution maps resemble the parts of the country known to have had "Belgic" tribes and/or culture (Aylesford-Swarling pottery) at the time of Caesar's invasion, and Caesar records a tradition of a Belgic takeover of SE Britain not long before his time. In fact one of the most surprising results in this paper is the apparent genetic homogeneity of the British bronze and iron-age samples: in contrast, for instance. Tacitus claimed that the Silures looked distinctly different from other British tribes. Of course Gretzinger et al do point out that their coverage of the Roman era is very sparse (7 individuals), mostly from the Roman towns which seem unlikely to be representative of the countryside. They have no samples from the territory of the Silures. Meanwhile, the aDNA data for France is still very patchy, with no samples from large parts of the country including most of the Atlantic seaboard, so "France IA" may not be typical Gauls.

    1. I imagine French Iron Age increases gradually from the LBA through the post-Norman invasion. It may be punctuated several times along that line. I'll be interested to see how much and when.