Localizing Ashkenazic Jews to Primeval Villages in the Ancient Iranian Lands of Ashkenaz

Das, Ranajit and Wexler, Paul and Pirooznia, Mehdi and Eran, Elhaik (2016) Localizing Ashkenazic Jews to Primeval Villages in the Ancient Iranian Lands of Ashkenaz. Genome Biology and Evolution, 8 (4). pp. 1132-1149. ISSN 17596653

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Official URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC48606...


TheYiddishlanguageisover1,000yearsoldandincorporatesGerman,Slavic,andHebrewelements.TheprevalentviewclaimsYiddish hasaGermanorigin,whereastheopposingviewpositsaSlavicoriginwithstrongIranianandweakTurkicsubstrata.Oneofthemajor difficulties in deciding between these hypotheses is the unknown geographical origin of Yiddish speaking Ashkenazic Jews (AJs). An analysis of 393 Ashkenazic, Iranian, and mountain Jews and over 600 non-Jewish genomes demonstrated that Greeks, Romans, Iranians,andTurksexhibitthehighestgeneticsimilaritywithAJs.TheGeographicPopulationStructureanalysislocalizedmostAJsalong major primeval trade routes in northeastern Turkey adjacent to primeval villages with names that may be derived from “Ashkenaz.” IranianandmountainJewswerelocalizedalongtraderoutesontheTurkey’seasternborder.Lossofmaternalhaplogroupswasevident in non-Yiddish speaking AJs. Our results suggest that AJs originated from a Slavo-Iranian confederation, which the Jews call “Ashkenazic” (i.e., “Scythian”), though these Jews probably spoke Persian and/or Ossete. This is compatible with linguistic evidence suggesting that Yiddish is a Slavic language created by Irano-Turko-Slavic Jewish merchants along the Silk Roads as a cryptic trade language, spoken only by its originators to gain an advantage in trade. Later, in the 9th century, Yiddish underwent relexification by adoptinganewvocabularythatconsistsofaminorityofGermanandHebrewandamajorityofnewlycoinedGermanoidandHebroid elements that replaced most of the original Eastern Slavic and Sorbian vocabularies, while keeping the original grammars intact

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: archaeogenetics, Yiddish, Ashkenazic Jews, Ashkenaz, geographic population structure (GPS), Rhineland Hypothesis.
Subjects: Departments at MU > Manipal Centre for Natural Sciences
Depositing User: MCNS Editor
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2017 07:07
Last Modified: 17 Jul 2017 07:12
URI: http://eprints.manipal.edu/id/eprint/149374

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