Ancient Ancestral South “Indians” may have roots in Southeast Asia


At the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution conference in Japan there is a presentation which reports evidence for gene flow from Pleistocene Southeast Asians into South Asia. I have long suggested this was possible for several reasons.

During the Last Glacial Maximum ~20,000 years ago Southeast Asia would have been a relatively protected and well-watered region in comparison to South Asia. My understanding is that moist savanna has higher population densities of hunter-gatherers than dry scrubland. Southeast Asia would have had a great deal of the former, and almost none of the latter (the LGM was drier, and the rainforest zone in Southeast Asia would have been smaller, and Sundaland was probably mostly savanna). The Thar desert zone would have been much more expansive, pushing south and east. The summer monsoons were far weaker.

All this indicates Southeast Asia would have had larger populations than South Asia during this period. And large populations tend to impact smaller populations genetically.

Additionally, looking closely at haplogroup M, which is highly diverse in South Asia, some of them look to be intrusive and related to branches in Southeast Asia. Though I do believe some of the M branches in South Asia are very old and probably native, others may have been brought by Southeast Asian people related to the Hoabinhian culture (which was mostly absorbed by rice farmers from the north during the Holocene).

During the Pleistocene Southeast Asia and Southern Asia were probably part of the same biogeographic zone, just as they are today. The ancestors and relatives of the Negrito peoples of Southeast Asia probably displayed a continuity from South Asia down toward Oceania. The preponderant gene flow at some points from the east to the was probably just a function of population size and climate.

Today the genetic differences on the border between South and Southeast Asia are striking. Though Pathans and Punjabis are quite different, they are far closer genetically than Bengalis and Burmese (notably, linguistically the chasm is also far greater). I think that has partly to do with agricultural and sedentarism. The mountainous zones in northeast India and western Burma are far harder for farmers to traverse than small groups of hunter-gatherers.

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45 thoughts on “Ancient Ancestral South “Indians” may have roots in Southeast Asia”

  1. Wow, I remember reading your blogpost on one of your sites discussing this possibility. I have encountered it several times elsewhere too. Highly interesting. Thank you very much for this as always!

    What do you believe the situation to have been on the western end of the Indian plate’s landmass before the Mehrgarh neolithic and the Holocene? Is there some truth in the Out of India theorists’ belief that the AASI ancestry came much later to the Indus area? I was considering all this while that perhaps the Hindukush and other mountains acted as the main facilitators of genetic separation between West Asia and South Asia, but maybe the Thar desert was the actual separator? Given how you say that the hunter gatherers of Southeast Asia may not have found it so impossible to move through the mountains in northeast India during the LGM, is it possible that the Indus regions were similarly colonised by people ultimately from Iran and/or Siberia, who probably were very much like the later neolithics known from Iran and Central Asia aDNA, far earlier than the Mehrgarh period and the Holocene? Wikipedia also tells me that the Indus regions were part of a “Tropical semi-desert” with some small portions of them as well as the Thar desert being part of a “Tropical extreme desert” while most of the remaining subcontinent had a “Tropical grassland” climate apparently. During the 3000 years or so between the LGM and the beginning of Holocene and the 3000 years or so between the onset of Holocene and Mehragarh neolithic, things may not have changed that much and the Indus populations were already part of a West Asian genetic profile with possibly some minor AASI ancestry that only steadily increased as neolithic period started?

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  2. Lemuria! Lemuria! #RajaRajadidnothingwrong

    “Though Pathans and Punjabis are quite different, they are far closer genetically than Bengalis and Burmese ”

    Are Pathans genetically closer to Iranian groups or Indian groups? And bengalis with that degree of east asian genetics are still so much away from burmese?

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    1. Are Pathans genetically closer to Iranian groups or Indian groups? And bengalis with that degree of east asian genetics are still so much away from burmese?

      bengalis. let’s say someone is 80% s. asian and 20% east asian. burmese are flipped. s. asian and east asian are VERY different.

      pathan is like 30% s. asian and and 70% west asian. punjabi is like 50% south asian and 50% west asian (these numbers are a little made up cuz sensitive to parameters). also, south asian west asian are genetically closer than south asian and east asian, since south asian is partly west asian.

      does this make sense?

      pathans are closer to iranians than they are to tamils. but they are between northwest south asians (punjabis) and iranians. not closer to iranians.

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      1. “let’s say someone is 80% s. asian and 20% east asian. burmese are flipped”

        Do you also find it strange that how neighboring ethnicity are so different? I mean where are the punjabis of the east (50% s. asian and 50% east asian)?

        Pathans still have 30% s. asian , always felt they would be less like 10 percent or so. Looks like the only ethnicity they are closer to more than iranians, are the punjabis, apart from that they are closer to iranians. On the other hand felt the punjabis south asian % age would have been higher. Because the common sense is punjabis are more south asian than west asian, never felt they are so “perfectly balanced”.

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        1. I’m not getting into the genetics, but culturally Punjabis are solidly South Asian. All Pakistani Punjabis share with Iran is Islam (and most Punjabis are Sunni). I think Afghanistan is kind of the border between South Asia and West Asia. Pakistan is solidly South Asian (despite the fact that many people in my country aren’t exactly jumping for joy at that fact).

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          1. “Pakistan is solidly South Asian (despite the fact that many people in my country aren’t exactly jumping for joy at that fact).”

            Do you think it has to do with the lack of heroes in the history, i have noticed that in India too.
            Punjab does not have heroes till Ranjit Singh and even there he is seen a sikh so doesnt count. Its similar to Bengalis over emphasis on Post 1857 period( after that they had some heroes) or Marathis after Shivaji.

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          2. We have Punjabi heroes. They tend to be Sufi Saints like Baba Farid and Baba Bulleh Shah.

            Anyway, Pakistan doesn’t like dwelling too much on anything pre-1947 (except for maybe the Mughal Empire).

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          3. I know about punjabi sufi saints , but with all due respect they are not heroes i am talking about. When people talk about Marathas no one is really talking Tukaram, they are talking Shivaji.

            “Anyway, Pakistan doesn’t like dwelling too much on anything pre-1947 (except for maybe the Mughal Empire).”

            Yeah i think it has to do with that, we have the same thing in India as well(nothing to get defensive about), where ethnicity base and wipe their history based on heroes. Similar to Bengal’s history starts from Plassey, Tamil’s (religious kind) base it on Cholas, non religious kind to Sangam. Marathas to Shivaji etc. I feel had their been a muslim Ranjit Singh, Pakistan would have delved into history pre 1947(apart from mughals of course), which helps in feeling pride/root for the region.

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      2. Fascinating information. Kudos for the guesstimate of percentages for us laymen. Unlike India, I almost never see any attempts in Bangladesh to disseminate the history-creating population genetic findings to the general people. In Bangladesh, the social divide between the more SE Asian Hill people and more South Asian flatland people, is a very important socio-political issue.

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    2. Saurav,

      Most Pashtuns are genetically closer to the Iranian groups of Central Asia, rather than the populations of northern South Asia. Which makes sense, considering that the Pashtuns are a southern extension of those Central Asian Iranics (the Pamiri peoples, the Yaghnob population, Tojiki-speaking peoples, etc).

      Now, if you’re idea of “Iranian” is West Asian (Kurds, Lur, Persians of the western plateau, etc), then Pashtuns are somewhat closer to Jat and Gujjar Punjabis, rather than West Asians. But even in that case, there is almost equidistance. (I have the samples and analyses to back these statements up, if you guys are interested)

      Looking at the whole ethnic group in the sense of some idealized “average”, one can model the “average” Pashtun as 50% Pamiri Tajik, 40% Gujjar/Jat Punjabi or Sindhi, and 10% southeastern Iranian or Balochi.

      Obviously though, there is great variability. Most of the Durrani and Ghilzai Pashtun only take 15%-20% northwestern South Asian, while some of the eastern Pashtuns can be modelled as 60% Punjabi (the ANI type) and 40% Pamiri + southeastern Iranian.

      Also, we’re talking about the mostly West Eurasian Punjabis (the ones who are 80% West Eurasian) for all of these models.

      Some Punjabis, like some of the samples from Lahore, aren’t so different from South Indians. If you use them, some eastern Pashtuns will only take 35% Punjabi, and the Ghilzai and Durrani will see percentages in the 5%-10% range.

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      1. the main quibble i’d have with your assertion is that so many (less so yagnob or pamiri) have turkic era admixture that shifts them a lot from pashtuns.

        also, using formal methods the even hill ppl (kalash pathans) have ~10% AASI type ancestry due to back migration of indus periphery types. this doesn’t get much past southern afghanistan last i checked.

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        1. Razib,

          I think I can fully explicate the dynamics once I get home tonight. I’ll post some models, clarify my remarks, and add some further flesh. I think you’ll find the data to be interest. Not sure about everyone else though, they don’t seem to dig genetics.

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          1. I wonder how much of this fascination for human population genetics in the lay Indian public is driven by Indian obsessions with skin tone and familial descent, and, lately, the reverse-obsession with proving nativism (which is just a psychological complex of the former obsession)?

            I reckon most Indian observers or dilettantes of population genetics don’t really understand/appreciate the Science, but are just interested in it as a new-age method of either showing exotic descent (read Aryan, Lemurian, Alexandrian, Arab or whatever is in fashion these days) or confirming everyone is a daughter/son of Bharat Mata since IVC. It is so revolting to me personally that it really puts me off genuine scientific work in this field – no offence to experts like Razib and others. I think I’d have “dug” the nuances of this field a lot more if I weren’t Indian.

            (Just a personal rant)

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          2. Slapstick

            “public is driven by Indian obsessions with skin tone and familial descent, and, lately, the reverse-obsession with proving nativism ”

            I dont think proving nativism has to do with skin tone, the periyar-ist at least didnt think about it that way. India has a white skin obsession irrespective whether someone in a nativist or not.

            ” showing exotic descent (read Aryan, Lemurian, Alexandrian, Arab or whatever is in fashion these days) or confirming everyone is a daughter/son of Bharat Mata since IVC. ”

            Its just a ‘political’ fight between respective side intellectuals, any addition to the research work is used to settle scores politically , but i hardly doubt people will change their already stratified views on this topic from further research.

            Also i see similar fights at a lot of places as to the real native of the land, its not a Indian thing only.

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          3. Slapstik,

            This type of condescension is why lay people are more and more interested.

            Curiosity about ancestry is natural. Otherwise there won’t be family tree books or ancestry.com before genetics were popular among lay Americans.

            Someone can very well accuse you of very same nativist arguments given your interest in linguistics. The nasty fights regarding IVC scripts and Rg Veda sorting have definitely put me off linguistics

            Also, if you read enough of Razib, genes for skin tone haven’t known until recently. Even then, having a gene doesn’t guarantee anything for your kids anyway. (Unless you’re a very intelligent mother – per latest GWAS study ). 23& me tells any Indian that they are 95% South Asian. Your grandma knows better familial descent since they keep track of who is related to whom for arranged marriage purposes.

            So, it is safe to say you can explore genetics without being accused of any of those fascinations you ranted about .😀

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          4. @Saurav

            I meant that skin-tone obsession also feeds into the nativism complex, partly as a reaction to colonial theories of white men having given India its classical culture. Indians obviously look different from each other – in some cases very different – and that unsettles some people who wish to explain differences staring in their face away by virtue of population genetics phenomenologies.

            It isn’t India specific, but Indians are fairly obsessive with this stuff for all the wrong reasons which is a real turn off. Exotic descent is cool in Western circles too (a recent phenomenon) but it is a liberal impulse whereby people militate against the single-white-race straitjacket, unlike in India where we are either primarily concerned with white-washing ourselves or confirming our nativist biases by eigenvalue decomposition of cherry-picked data. At least that’s my personal impression.

            PS: No “c” in Slapstik.

            @Violet

            I think you are unnecessarily flying off the handle a bit here. I wasn’t condescending but genuinely curious if my personal impression of a majority of Indian genetics dilettantes is correct. I wasn’t speaking of all of the people who are interested in a scientific field of inquiry, and certainly not you.

            I was just responding to Commentator’s comment on digging genetics, i.e. why my Indian baggage makes me dig it less that I otherwise would have. Linguistics is irrelevant here. Language is not inherited but learnt culture. One can *choose* to speak it.

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          5. “I meant that skin-tone obsession also feeds into the nativism complex, partly as a reaction to colonial theories of white men having given India its classical culture”

            Oh come on, In India everyone who is political is obsessed with nativist theory. Do you think the lemurians obsession is fueled by “white men having given India its classical culture” , do they feel there were white people in Lemuria, on the other hand its a bit opposite where they argue that the fair skinned ones are the invaders from the north while they , the dark skinned ones are the original ones. The same theory goes for dalits as well as tribals. In their circles too the Savarnas are the fair skinned ones/invader and they contrast that with their skin tone/nativism.

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          6. Just look it up on the net , it makes Out of India theory look like serious research 😛

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          7. Zack asks
            What is Lemuria?

            Where Lemurs live, i.e. Madagascar

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lemur
            the word lemur derives from the word lemures (ghosts or spirits) from Roman mythology and was first used to describe a slender loris due to its nocturnal habits and slow pace, but was later applied to the primates on Madagascar

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      2. U r assuming virtually no “Iranicisation” by the Pathans..

        Eastern Afghanistan & NW Pakistan has only fully Iranicised in the last millennia; even Baluchistan has indigenous groups..

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        1. Zack,

          Not assuming anything. With more time, I could give you a proper account of the socio-historical picture, but that isn’t what we’re discussing. We’re talking about genetic affinities.

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      3. “Most Pashtuns are genetically closer to the Iranian groups of Central Asia, rather than the populations of northern South Asia. ”

        Yeah that what i thought, it made sense.

        “Now, if you’re idea of “Iranian” is West Asian (Kurds, Lur, Persians of the western plateau, etc), then Pashtuns are somewhat closer to Jat and Gujjar Punjabis, rather than West Asians. But even in that case, there is almost equidistance. ”

        I was talking more as central asian rather than west asian, the earlier point. But even then i felt afghans are bit closer to west Iranians rather than Jatts/Punjabis . But “40% Gujjar/Jat Punjabi or Sindhi” is still high enough for my estimation.

        Your point on diversity is well taken.

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      4. @Commentator

        Perhaps I’m being naïve but isn’t what you’re saying sort of obvious given where Pashtuns are located .. W-NW of Punjab, E of Iran and abutting C Asia. And most Pashtun population lives in E Afgh and W Pakistan, rather than Iran proper to boot.

        It would have been interesting if Pashtuns had shown genetic kinship not in line with what we expect from their situation. But what you are saying seems sort of on expected lines, or have I misunderstood you?

        (Perhaps I am looking for an oh-blimey! moment and dissatisfied that there’s none to be found here)

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        1. @Slapstik

          “Perhaps I am looking for an oh-blimey! moment and dissatisfied that there’s none to be found here…”

          Yeah, you hit your own nail exactly on its head.

          My contextualization of Pashtun genetic affinity (in relation to their neighbors) was not an attempt at conveying unique and unexpected insight. Rather, it was completely tied to the exchange occurring between Razib and Saurav, where mention was made of “West Asian vs South Asian” ancestral quantum.

          Saurav,

          “But even then i felt afghans are bit closer to west Iranians rather than Jatts/Punjabis .”

          Many of them are. In fact, most of the Ghilzai and Durrani are genetically closer to western Iranians in comparison to any population in northwestern South Asia.

          And some of the isolated Karlani higlanders possess an equal/comparable genetic relationship to West Eurasian-type Punjabis (Jatts/Gujjars/Khatri/Rajput) and Chechens/Lezgins/Avars!

          “But “40% Gujjar/Jat Punjabi or Sindhi” is still high enough for my estimation… Your point on diversity is well taken.”

          Again, this estimate is based on an “idealized” Platonic type (lol). Some Pashtuns in the eastern quadrant can be sensibly modeled as 60%-70% ANI-like Punjabi, while most of the western Pashtuns barely get 20% ANI-like Punjabi. And many of the FATA Pashtun are more around 35%. Like you said, diversity should always be kept in mind.

          Anyway, those estimates aren’t meant to be taken literally. I mean, Pashtuns aren’t actually the product of mixture between Pamiri Tajiks, high-caste Punjabis, and southeastern Iranians. Those are just the estimates you obtain when you force things, by using geographic neighbors as sole reference populations.

          In truth, all populations in eastern West Asia, southern Central Asia, and northern South Asia share the same ancestral streams. As a result, you can model all of these populations as mixtures of each other, but that doesn’t have much of a bearing on reality. For example, you could probably model Punjabi Jatts as 60% Punjabi Chamar and 40% Karlani Pashtun highlander, but that isn’t a “serious model”, just a fun way of testing affinity.

          The source populations are shared, but the proportions differ. We’re looking at clines of genetic similarity, structured by geography, that’s all.

          Also, just a sidenote: some Afghan Tajiks, like the Panjsheris, are genetically identical to Pashtuns. The ones which aren’t genetically identical to Pashtuns tend to have a ton of Turkic-related admixture.

          Razib,

          “also, using formal methods the even hill ppl (kalash pathans) have ~10% AASI type ancestry due to back migration of indus periphery types. this doesn’t get much past southern afghanistan last i checked.”

          Absolutely, Kalasha, Nuristanis, and the eastern Pashtuns do seem to be around 10% AASI. But this does seep beyond southern Afghanistan. The Ishkashim speakers show around 5-7% AASI, and the other Pamiri peoples seem to be around 2%-3%. True Tajiks in Tajikistan also hover around 2%-3% AASI. The only population with 0% AASI in Tajikistan (for which we have samples) seem to be the Yaghnobi people. In Iran, the people of Khurasan do seem to show around 5% AASI, while the Iranian Bandari samples (the ones which lack African admixture) are closer to being at 10%. Once you hit northwestern Iran, you still see 1% AASI, which one could perhaps construe as noise, but it doesn’t appear for other Near Easterners in the same analyses, so I’m inclined to see it as a real (albeit incredibly faint) signal.

          “(less so yagnob or pamiri) have turkic era admixture that shifts them a lot from pashtuns.”

          My focus there was mainly on Pamiri and Yaghnobi folk.

          All,

          If you guys want, I can post some genetic models of South Asians, southern Central Asians (Pashtuns, Kalasha, Kho, Tajiks, Pamiri, Yaghnobi, etc), and West Asians, using aDNA samples, later this week. Though, it depends on whether you folks are interested in aDNA stuff.

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          1. Correct me if I m wrong but I am quite sure you are Sein from eurogenes.

            Good to see you here and wish you a long healthy association with this blog.

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  3. Saurav, Punjab and Bengal have many spiritual heroes. The reason for the lack of known polito-economic heroes is that they were under occupation for a long time and the rulers suppressed knowledge of said heroes.

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  4. Nice to see you post on this paper. The abstract was put up on anthrogenica and it is as follows :-

    Back migrations of Southeast Asian ancestors to South Asia during the Last Glacial Maximum

    Namrata Kalsi 1, Stephan Schuster 1, Hie Lim Kim 1, 2, The GenomeAsia 100K consortium

    1 Nanyang Technological University (Singapore),
    2 Nanyang Technological University (Singapore)

    The ancestor of the South Asian tribal people, the oldest groups in the region, has not been clearly known, due to lack of genome data. Our study used more than 800 high coverage and whole genome data, including 470 South Asians and 280 Southeast Asians, generated by the GenomeAsia 100K project. We found admixture signals between tribal South Asians and indigenous people living in the Malay Peninsula, Kensiu and Kintak, who are the earliest settlers in the region and also speak Austroasiatic languages. According to the MSMC analysis, the Malay groups have once increased their population size during the Last Glacial Maximum. During this period, the sea level in the Southeast Asia region was dramatically increased. In the same time period, the South Asian tribes show admixture signal and higher cross-coalescence rate with Kensiu than other South Asian groups. These results support the possible contacts between the ancestors of South and Southeast Asian groups, during the Last Glacial Maximum. Based on analyses using sex chromosomes and mitochondrial genomes, we found abundant male Southeast Asian ancestries in the South Asian tribal groups, which is consistent with previous studies. Overall, our study suggests the possibility of male-driven migrations from Southeast Asia to South Asia and noticeable contacts between them, with the sea level rise in Southeast Asia.

    This is exciting stuff and I was planning to post this on your gnxp blog to draw your attention but got a little late.

    Let us wait and see how solid the study’s inferences are. If their assertions are backed by good solid data, this adds complexity to the AASI ancestry in South Asia. Clearly there has to be structure within the AASI stream of ancestry. It could not have been a monolithic single population. Even Narasimhan et al suggested that the South Asian AASI had separated from the other East EurAsian groups atleast around 45000 ybp. So from that period right up to the Holocene how could it not have splintered into several different groups ?

    South Asian genetic history is clearly quite complicated. We need to collect much greater nos of ancient and modern samples from the vast and massive population of this region.

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  5. Clearly there has to be structure within the AASI stream of ancestry.

    i think it’s pretty obv. that there is. in particular to the NE. (chota napgur)

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    1. Well it should be clear but why do population geneticists ignore it ? For example who do Narasimhan et al model AASI on the Onge when clearly it is much more complex than that ? Though I m unable to recall right now, there are some qpAdm models of ancient and modern South Asians ( InPe included) in their paper where Han as the AASI source gives a higher p value than Onge.

      Instead of using Onge as the AASI source for South Asians would it simply not have been better to use something like a Pulliyar as the native source ? It would still be imperfect but likely to give a picture that is much closer to truth.

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  6. This is an interesting development, although I thought this was somewhat expected given how Onge themselves weren’t good proxies for ASI.

    I guess South Asian pop gen is at the threshold of being split in to more than two (ANI, ASI) or three (InPe, ANI, AASI) components. Just like EHG, EEF, WHG, CHG, ANE, (sorry haven’t mastered everything, don’t know how Basal Eurasian is properly shortened, BE?) I look forward to learning more and more acronyms from pop gen pubs. 🙂

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  7. Razib:

    Is this discussion paragraph “During the Last Glacial Maximum ~20,000 years ago Southeast Asia would have been a relatively protected and well-watered region in comparison to South Asia. My understanding is that moist savanna has higher population densities of hunter-gatherers than dry scrubland. Southeast Asia would have had a great deal of the former, and almost none of the latter (the LGM was drier, and the rainforest zone in Southeast Asia would have been smaller, and Sundaland was probably mostly savanna). The Thar desert zone would have been much more expansive, pushing south and east. The summer monsoons were far weaker.”
    from that paper?

    This does not represent the current state of knowledge about India in LGM.

    Some things that we know for true:

    1. Himalayan glacier cover was larger
    2. Thar had multiple saline and hypersaline lakes
    3. The extent of forest cover was smaller
    4. Tropical monsoon system was less well established.
    5. The river-delta system is unclear showing both, pre-glacial minimum proof of existence and later.

    It was not until 13-11 BP was the tropical monsoon fully established, “Highest values of insolation summer and warmer Indian Ocean SST of the Pleistocene-Holocene During the transition ( c. 13-11lime. ka BP) increased the amount of summer precipitation and caused expansion of the southwest monsoon”

    I think that a lack of a large scale monsoon system and a well established river-delta system had a larger contribution to a lack of the population. Nonetheless akin to genetics and peopling of India, paleogeography of India is poorly established today even with the availability of large exposed data.

    None of this impacts further discussion in the post below that paragraph.

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  8. Instead of using Onge as the AASI source for South Asians would it simply not have been better to use something like a Pulliyar as the native source ? It would still be imperfect but likely to give a picture that is much closer to truth.

    west eurasian ancestry. in hindsight perhaps pulliyar makes sense. but to get to understand who/what pulliyar are, you need a outgroup with no west eurasian ancestry. in fact, though onge are VERY different from AASI, they have the virtue of probably being isolated for 10,000 years. assuming the onge are highly drifted, it’s still more useful i think to use them because they lack the confounding admixture. AASI has to be inferred, but more useful than using high AASI groups.

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    1. How is west Eurasian being defined here? Also if the argument is about using an isolated group from modern pops would the exercise be just as valid if we used Japanese or Australian aboriginal or Yoruba in place of Onge?
      Also why is the same argument for isolated population not extended on the western end? I am certain out of Cheddar man and Iran_N, the latter would be closer to Onge (and therefore AASI), so what stops us from lumping Iran_N into the hypothetical AASI and only treating as westerly intrusive that which is related to further west ancients like cheddar man or all other fossils that go into WHG, SHG, CHG etc.
      Essentially what are we getting at from positing these genetics models as that which is supposedly super native and distinct to the south/southeast Asia continuum but abruptly broken from southwest Asia? Even Indus periphery and Rakhigarhi are being modeled as Iran_N x% and Onge y% when really they should be done as maybe Iran_N x% and Punjab Chamar y% if we are relegated to modern for latter category. What happens to all these models if the same unity of the Iran_N and Onge we see in Rakhigarhi or Indus periphery also shows up in South Asian aDNA from older than the age of the Iran_N guys?

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      1. Also if the argument is about using an isolated group from modern pops would the exercise be just as valid if we used Japanese or Australian aboriginal or Yoruba in place of Onge?

        onge are closer to AASI.

        I am certain out of Cheddar man and Iran_N, the latter would be closer to Onge (and therefore AASI)

        this is false. cheddar man is closer. that’s because iran_N has gene flow from a basal group.

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        1. And basal is intrusive to South Asia like Iran-n and via the latter? No relation or continuum of basal eurasian to onge can exist through Paleolithic South Asia? Is there a tree diagram I can see that shows this including breakdown of OOA and where Iran-n, Onge, AASI, InPe, Rakhigarhi, other east and east and west and basal eurasians lie? Or if it doesn’t exist could you make one and post it? Most diagrams I find correspond to the path to modern Europe pops and I’m left to infer the subcontinent.
          Thanks

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  9. @Slapstik,

    I apologize that it came across a little too harsh. I tried to edit it when I saw it might be sounding too personal but ran out of time. Sorry about that.

    I was referring to the nativist arguments because they started out in linguistics. Talageri, Farmer, Witzel et al. were having epic battles on message boards that were very nasty and personal until ancient DNA became all the rage.

    I think it is quite naive to think linguistics has nothing to do with nativists. If that were the case, whole debate about proto-indo-European homeland and steppe people speaking it won’t deserve any comments. The whole nativist fight is about language of Rg Veda (if it came with steppe people), and IVC (what they spoke), and conflicting political interests. There are Unbelievable number of horse, wheel, chariot root word debates and how many horse words in Vedas debates in genetics threads.

    If people thought language transmits without genes, there won’t be geneticists co-authoring with linguists.

    But that is the recent internet history anyway that linguistics-ancient genetics-nativists are all bounded up. One can’t question the interest in one part too hard without rising a brow about the interest in another.

    I hope this clarifies my intent a bit more.

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    1. Violet, I think there was globalized trade and culture long, long ago. And that we evolved a global open architecture system. In that sense the Rig Veda belongs to many countries. And the wisdom of the Rig Veda belongs to the whole world.

      Jati and Varna are different things. Many new Jatis keep entering the Arya Varsha system in the ancient stories. Geneology and genetics measure Jatis. It is good that Arya culture accepted many Jatis into the the Varnas.

      “If people thought language transmits without genes, there won’t be geneticists co-authoring with linguists.” Why would anyone thing that language, culture, art, intuition and feelings transmit with genetics or Jati?

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    2. @Violet

      No worries. I just have two substantive points to make:

      a) Witzel, Talageri, Kak et al whose fights you are referring to aren’t lay public or dilettantes. They have widely different interpretations of IE linguistics and glottochronological fitting functions (and one of those is wrong), but one can argue with all of them on sound principles. To be passionate about one’s views – resulting in testy and combative email exchanges – is not the exception in academia, but the norm. (I recall many APS conferences where physicists routinely flew off their handles…)

      So, this is not directly relevant to the dilettantism I was speaking of.

      b) Even when people wade into whacky linguistics theories re what Aryans spoke and stuff, their real motivation is actually genetics. And not just any genetics, like say genetics of insulin resistance, but genetics of physiognomy specifically. So speech is merely a correlate of that.

      Re linguists co-authoring with pop geneticists, sure, but that is correlation not causation. In older tribal societies languages (at least over a short enough turn-over time-scales) were correlated to where one was born. However, it was never a norm and therefore language speciation rate is exponentially faster than genetic speciation among humans. Heck! we are still the same genetic species, but what percentage of world’s languages can even the most accomplished polyglot speak?

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  10. Zachary, Lemuria is a reference to a place that many human souls are thought to come from. Meditator communities have long had visions of Lemuria and have extensively written and spoken about Lemuria since the 1800s. Lemuria might be an ancient earth civilization that disappeared before Atlantis.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solon
    Solon studied extensively studied in Egyptian universities and later returned to Greece with a lot of Egyptian knowledge. Solon read detailed Egyptian records of history. According to Egyptian records Atlantis was destroyed circa 7500 BC.

    Some have combined Lemuria with ancient Tamil records of an ancient civilization (Kumari Kandam) in South India and a land mass that connected to South India that is now submerged below the Indian ocean. Is Lemuria the same as this Kumari Kandam? I don’t know. Kumari Kandam and her seven rivers feature prominently in many Arya texts and ancient Tamil texts. Please see the link in the next comment.

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  11. lol. Kumari kandam theory is a false theory propagated by Tamil nationalist.
    Dravidians did not originate in so called Kumari kandam as per imagination of Tamil nationalist.
    They would most probably arrived in India around 3000 BCE to 2500 BCE from greater Iran.

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