Monday, December 8, 2014

The Case for Haplogroup G

While the research released last week could not prove conclusively what the Plantagenet Y Chromosome was, it did NOT say that it proved Richard was not a Plantagenet though his father's side. No matter how badly historians & writers want to spin it that way, such statements are false & misleading. Here's a spoiler alert for Phillipa Gregory's next novel: Isabella of Castille has an affair with John Holland & gets pregnant with Richard of Conisburgh. :cough: Didn't happen :cough:

The Y-Chromosome identified in Richard III's remains was Haplogroup G, specifically G2-P287+.  I admit, everything after the "G" still reads like gobbletygook to me.  However, I have learned a couple of interesting things about Haplogroup G & men who have carried it.

According to Wikipedia, Haplogroup G first appeared in the Middle East during Neolithic times &  arrived in Europe with migrations of farmers & settlers from that region.  The earliest European remains belonging to this Haplogroup have been dated to 5000-3000 B.C.E.,  & have been found in Spain, France, Bavaria, & the Italian Alps.  Although this haplogroup is widespread, it is not very common.

Looking beyond the findings of last week's report, however, there is still some strong evidence that Haplogroup G is the correct Haplogroup for the Plantagenet Dynasty.  First, there are only 3 generations separating Richard III and Edward III. Second, remains supposedly belonging to Henry IV of France & Louis XVI both were found to have belonged to men in Haplogroup G.  Since this haplogroup is rare in Western Europe, it is hard to wave off  these findings it in 3 different kings from different countries & centuries  as "coincidence."

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