Ancient tombs analyzed: Illegal dynasties existed in Ireland

Ancient tombs analyzed: Illegal dynasties existed in Ireland

Ancient tombs were analyzed
There were illegitimate dynasties in Ireland

In Ireland, researchers are examining various graves. The genetic analysis of more than 40 people buried there shows similarities that point to incestuous relationships. The present results not only confirm the infidelity among the elites of the time, but also provide the oldest evidence of trisomy 21.

Monumental tombs and the proximity of the closest relatives of the elite: 5,000 years ago, the dynasties of Egyptian pharaohs and Inca gods apparently ruled the island of Ireland. One Gene study The journal Nature recreates how these power structures came to be – and provides early evidence of Down syndrome. It also suggests that an Irish myth may be based on real events thousands of years old.

There are hundreds of large tombs in Ireland – so-called passage tombs, long corridors leading to burial chambers beneath large earthen mounds, set in stone. The complex dates back to the 4th millennium BC, so it is older than the Egyptian pyramids in Giza.

Newgrange is older than Stonehenge

The sun shines on a corridor in Newgrange.

(Photo: dpa)

The most famous is the New Grange, built between 3200 and 3000 BC on the eastern side of the island north of Dublin, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. At the end of winter, at sunrise, light falls on the basement of the inner chamber with the altar through a 20 m long corridor, arranged in a tomb complex about 90 m in diameter. Newgrange is about 500 years older than Stonehenge in England. Little is known about the manufacturers of the systems. The team, now led by geneticist Daniel Bradley from Trinity College Dublin, analyzed the genomes of 42 people from two island dwellers and different burials before that period.

Results show that various large burials from different parts of the island – in addition to Newgrange, for example, in Northwest Karaoke and Caromore – were partially buried with distant relatives. “It seems to have been a strong, branched kinship group with access to elite cemeteries in many parts of the island for at least half a millennium,” lead author Lara Cassidy was quoted as saying in a Trinity College statement.

A member of this group, buried in Newgrange, specifically reveals: the man’s parents were first-degree relatives – that is, siblings or direct descendants of his parents. Such illicit relations are forbidden all over the world – except for a few ruling dynasties that have secured power for their families. There are similar – albeit recent – examples from ancient Egypt and the Incas.

Only family members are eligible partners

“The prestige of this type of cemetery speaks to an extreme range in which only the eligible spouses of the elite were family members,” Bradley said. Isotope analysis of human remains shows that the people buried in these tombs ate a lot of meat and animal products, which the researchers say is further evidence of their wealth. Interestingly, the discovery of the Immortal from Newgrange agrees with an 11th-century myth: Douth, the royal builder of the neighboring tomb, secured the sun’s daily cycle by proceeding with his sister.

Parallel to the findings of the study, it raises the question of whether oral traditions can survive four millennia, the team writes. In addition, a boy from the Polnabron megalithic tomb west of the island found early evidence of Down syndrome and trisomy 21. The tomb is estimated to be about 4,500 years old, according to researchers. Older evidence of trisomy 21 to date.

The migration of farmers 6000 years ago

Overall, the researchers conclude from their data that the island’s early poaching population was completely displaced by a farming population that arrived here about 6,000 years ago. In the following centuries, these new arrivals led to the hierarchical form of society that bears witness to the great tombs.

In a “natural” interpretation, Alison Sheridan of the National Museums in Edinburgh, Scotland, writes of a groundbreaking study with astonishing results. The winter solstice was a crucial date for the early farmers. 5000 years ago the islanders may have traveled from near and far to celebrate the end of winter. Sheridan emphasizes that learning to understand early societies has far-reaching consequences.

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