Celtic Myth Show News

Bringing the Tales and Stories of the Ancient Celts to your Fireside

Category: DNA

Beachy Head

The Beachy Head Lady in Iron Age Britain

Thanks to the wonderful Way Back machine, we have managed to recover another of the posts that we lost with our database crash. Please enjoy.

An exhibition exploring the origins of ancient skeletons in Sussex, including a woman from sub-Saharan Africa buried in Roman times, opened reported the BBC in Feb 2014. The face of the so-called Beachy Head Lady was recreated using craniofacial reconstruction.

Eastbourne Borough Council’s museum service was awarded a grant of £72,000 by the Heritage Lottery Fund for the Eastbourne Ancestors project. The aim was to identify the gender and age of each skeleton in its collection.

Detailed scientific analysis of more than 300 skeletons of people who lived in the south of England thousands of years ago has undertaken by scientists and archaeologists.

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Cherchen Man

The Mysteries of the Chinese Celtic Xinjiang Mummies


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Cherchen Man - from the article about the Xinjiang Mummies

Cherchen Man

Solid as a warrior of the Caledonii tribe, the man’s hair is reddish brown flecked with grey, framing high cheekbones, a long nose, full lips and a ginger beard. When he lived three thousand years ago, he stood six feet tall, and was buried wearing a red twill tunic and tartan leggings. He looks like a Bronze Age European. In fact, he’s every inch a Celt. Even his DNA says so.

But this is no early Celt from central Scotland. This is the mummified corpse of Cherchen Man, unearthed from the scorched sands of the Taklamakan Desert in the far-flung region of Xinjiang in western China, and now housed in a new museum in the provincial capital of Urumqi. In the language spoken by the local Uighur people in Xinjiang, “Taklamakan” means: “You come in and never come out.”

Within a nondescript Bronze Age cemetery first discovered by Swedish archaeologists in 1934 and rediscovered by the Xinjiang Archaeological Institute in 2000, researchers have found the oldest and best-preserved mummies in the Tarim Basin area of China. Their skeletal remains, along with unprecedented artifacts, are helping solve the longstanding question of the origins of human settlement in a politically contested area of China.

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First Ancient Irish Human Genomes Sequenced


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The First Ancient Irish human genomes have been sequenced Stonepages reported this month.

Geneticists from Trinity College Dublin and archaeologists from Queen’s University Belfast have sequenced the first genomes from ancient Irish humans – an early farmer woman who lived near Belfast some 5,200 years ago, and those of three men from around 4,000 years ago in the Bronze Age.
Ireland has intriguing genetics. It lies at the edge of many European genetic gradients, however the origins of this heritage are unknown.

Opinion has been divided on whether the great transitions in the British Isles – from a hunter-gatherer lifestyle to one based on agriculture and later from stone to metal use – were due to local adoption of new ways, or derived from influxes of new people.

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