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Information on genetics in the Republic of Ireland?

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#1
I remember reading somewhere that the genetic substance of the Republic of Ireland hasn't changed significantly that much since the Neolithic period, has anyone else come across this claim or has knowledge of the genetic break down of the ROI's indigenous population?

As a Christian Platonist obviously I believe that humans are made up of body, soul and spirit and so while I do accept that our biology does determine us to a degree I don't believe it is the be all and end all. What does get me though is materialists who don't see things such as genetics counting for anything almost.
 
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#2
I remember reading somewhere that the genetic substance of the Republic of Ireland hasn't changed significantly that much since the Neolithic period, has anyone else come across this claim or has knowledge of the genetic break down of the ROI's indigenous population?

As a Christian Platonist obviously I believe that humans are made up of body, soul and spirit and so while I do accept that our biology does determine us to a degree I don't believe it is the be all and end all. What does get me though is materialists who don't see things such as genetics counting for anything almost.
This is an interesting site I used to view
irishorigenes.com
I don't know if its up to date as regards our genetic make up but the guy running it was interested in local genetics.
Most Clans in Ireland had specific markers, which means if you have a Gaelic surname then its likely your genetics will match clusters which are concentrated in the ancient homeland of your Clan.
Its very interesting and makes sense really as its still very often the case where surnames are concentrated in the geographical historical homeland of a clan. The Gallagher clan in Donegal being an obvious example.
 
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#4
Interesting study, but the methodology seems deeply flawed

To be eligible, all eight of your great-grandparents must have been born within 50km of each other.
With such a sample of participants, of course you're going to get very little diversity.
While the Irish are certainly more homogeneous than some would have us believe, this study exaggerates it somewhat.
At best, it gives us a rough clue of Ireland's genetic makeup a few centuries ago.

How many here could honestly say they'd qualify for that study?
 

Tadhg Gaelach

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#5

I don't think the Irish are very genetically diverse at all. I remember the first time I went to London I was working with some Irish fellas and we used to play "Spot the Paddy." We could spot an Irishman in any crowd, and I'm pretty sure we were right most of the time. Of course, a large part of that is the body movements and facial expressions, which come from speaking the Irish language. Even Irish people who don't know the words of Irish, continue to use the bodily expressions of the Irish language.
 
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#6
I don't think the Irish are very genetically diverse at all. I remember the first time I went to London I was working with some Irish fellas and we used to play "Spot the Paddy." We could spot an Irishman in any crowd, and I'm pretty sure we were right most of the time. Of course, a large part of that is the body movements and facial expressions, which come from speaking the Irish language. Even Irish people who don't know the words of Irish, continue to use the bodily expressions of the Irish language.
Those from the west of Ireland perhaps.
 
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#8
all eight of your great-grandparents must have been born within 50km of each other

6 of mine were born within 15 km of each other!
I think you're right about the journal study though.
But as per the first link and others (which I can't seem to locate) there are definite markers or subtle differences which identify the various tribal groupings in Ireland such as the Deise, Cineall Conall etc
And they still cluster in the geographic locations of those tribal boundaries
I wish I could find the papers which go in to it in depth
 

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#9
If Nordies can recognize Nordies if not the tribe they come from when away I don't see how it is impossible that Southerners couldn't spot Irish people as such in the manner described.

I'd say I could spot any Irish people - including Protestants from the north. There is something common to all Irish people, despite the differences. I'd say that's the Celtic blood and the Gaelic language. Even if some of the Ulster Protestants never spoke Gaelic, they were constantly around people who did - even in Scotland. Mind you, that leaves the question of could I spot a Scottish person in a crowd? Not sure about that. Probably if they had red hair and wearing a kilt...
 
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#10
If Nordies can recognize Nordies if not the tribe they come from when away I don't see how it is impossible that Southerners couldn't spot Irish people as such in the manner described.
I meant being able to identify someone as obviously Irish, especially when abroad.
Those from the west, in my experience, are more phenotypically Irish than those in , say, Dublin.

I, for example, wouldn't be easily identifiable as an Irish person.
I've even been mistaken as a Pole a few times :smile2:

In fact -- and I won't be popular for saying this -- the average Dub looks more like someone from a provincial British city than they do someone from, say, Donegal.
 

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#11
all eight of your great-grandparents must have been born within 50km of each other

6 of mine were born within 15 km of each other!
I think you're right about the journal study though.
But as per the first link and others (which I can't seem to locate) there are definite markers or subtle differences which identify the various tribal groupings in Ireland such as the Deise, Cineall Conall etc
And they still cluster in the geographic locations of those tribal boundaries
I wish I could find the papers which go in to it in depth

Good point, from the tribal or Clann point of view, limiting to 50Km makes sense. My great grandmother lived her entire life between Achill and Croagh Patrick. That was the very limit of her travels. As you say, for the most part she wouldn't have gone beyong 15 Km.
 
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#12
the average Dub looks more like someone from a provincial British city than someone than they do someone from Donegal

That would make sense though no?
Traditionally the Dubs would have been the most mixed, with Norse, English over successive waves, Welsh, Scottish and so on
 
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#13
Arlene foster, for example, looks like someone from the west of Donegal or Mayo.

Quite a few Unionists are phenotypically more Irish than the average inhabitant of the Pale.
 
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#14
Arlene foster, for example, looks like someone from the west of Donegal or Mayo.

Quite a few Unionists are phenotypically more Irish than the average inhabitant of the Pale.
Controversial but definitely true.
I'm not an expert but the west of Scotland and Ulster would be far more closely related genetically than any other parts of Ireland
 
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#15
the average Dub looks more like someone from a provincial British city than someone than they do someone from Donegal

That would make sense though no?
Traditionally the Dubs would have been the most mixed, with Norse, English over successive waves, Welsh, Scottish and so on
It's certainly true in my case.
While I'm for the most part a Gael, I also have Scottish, Italian, English and Danish ancestry.
And I doubt I'm unique in that regard.

On the other hand, rural peoples tend to have less admixture.
Every successive wave of immigration tends to settle in the cities.
 
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SwordOfStCatherine
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#16
I'd say I could spot any Irish people - including Protestants from the north. There is something common to all Irish people, despite the differences. I'd say that's the Celtic blood and the Gaelic language. Even if some of the Ulster Protestants never spoke Gaelic, they were constantly around people who did - even in Scotland. Mind you, that leaves the question of could I spot a Scottish person in a crowd? Not sure about that. Probably if they had red hair and wearing a kilt...
Some of the Anglo-Irish or those with strong Anglo-Irish strains you probably wouldn't be able to spot. I remember being when someone in England told me she was from Ireland but she was in fact from here. I can spot people from Ulster in Scotland, don't ask me how but I can.
 
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#17
Arlene foster, for example, looks like someone from the west of Donegal or Mayo.

Quite a few Unionists are phenotypically more Irish than the average inhabitant of the Pale.
Actually Arlene Foster is ethnically more or less Irish Gaelic though the family have tried to hide it- I suspect that maybe why she goes out of her way to "prove" her "True Blue" colours. I suspect something similar is going on with Michael McIvor on the other side of the "Peace Wall".
 
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#18
Some of the Anglo-Irish or those with strong Anglo-Irish strains you probably wouldn't be able to spot. I remember being when someone in England told me she was from Ireland but she was in fact from here. I can spot people from Ulster in Scotland, don't ask me how but I can.
A sizeable chunk of the Anglo Irish are descended from soldier settlers from Wales and the West of England.

And then you have the likes of the Barons of Inchiquin and the Guinness family who are of Gaelic extraction.
 
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#19
In Rural Ireland (people don't like to admit this) there would have been quite a lot of interbreeding and this goes back very early to the beginnings of the Clan system to fairly recently to the early 20th century.
People marrying their 3rd 4th or 5th cousins was not at all uncommon.
It's still the case in the some Gaelic areas like Gweedore
 
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#20
A sizeable chunk of the Anglo Irish are descended from soldier settlers from Wales and the West of England.

And then you have the likes of the Barons of Inchiquin and the Guinness family who are of Gaelic extraction.
Actually it is strange that the Anglo-Irish group which are the most likable and most integrated are the descendants of New Model Army soldiers who settled here. Though they produce atavistic flair ups such as Mercurial on Politics.ie. I think you are confusing there the Anglo-Irish with the "Old English". Two different groups with two different histories.