Cradle of Civilization

A Blog about the Birth of Our Civilisation and Development

The Semites: From the Armenian Highland

Posted by Fredsvenn on December 4, 2014

Distribution map of haplogroup J1

The main haplogroup among the Semites are J1 P58, which is from Van. Chiaroni et al. (2010) found that the greatest genetic diversity of J1 haplotypes was found in eastern Anatolia, near Lake Van in central Kurdistan.

The first J1 men lived in the Late Upper Paleolithic, shortly before the end of the last Ice Age. Like many other successful lineages from the Middle East, J1 is thought to have undergone a major population expansion during the Neolithic period.

Eastern Anatolia and the Zagros mountains are the region where goats and sheep were first domesticated, some 11,000 years ago. Chiaroni et al. estimated that J1-P58 started expanding 9,000 to 10,000 years ago as pastoralists from the Fertile Crescent. Although they did not analyze the other branches, it is most likely that all surviving J1 lineages share the same origin as goat and sheep herders from the Taurus and Zagros mountains.

Kitchen et al. (2009) estimated through a Bayesian phylogenetic analysis that Semitic languages originated in the Levant around 3,750 BCE, during the Early Bronze Age. It evolved into three groups: East Semitic (an extinct branch that comprised Akkadian), Central Semitic (which gave rise to Aramaic, Ugaritic, Phoenician, Hebrew and Arabic), and South Semitic (South Arabian and Ethiopian).

Haplogroup J1 Y-DNA

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