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Close Jewish DNA match at MyHeritage-suggestions?

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  • Close Jewish DNA match at MyHeritage-suggestions?

    My mom (also Jewish) received a close Jewish DNA match at MyHeritage through a weekly email. It is a suggested match of 1st cousin twice removed (148.9 cM-2.1% shared DNA). The person lives in Sweden but is definitely Jewish (name) but as I am not a member I cannot contact them or do anything. I was able to view the tree on Geni & find the person on Face book who controls the tree (the match’s husband) & sent him a message. He speaks English but I sent it in Swedish just in case. My question is this- if his wife- who is around age 50- is a 1st cousin x 2 to my mom - who is 76 (I am going to be 50 in 2 months). Would they share a great grandparent or a great great grandparent? The tree did show one surname that was familiar- my great grandfather’s surname but it was her great grandmother’s 2nd husband’s surname & she didn’t seem to have children by him. Unless the child she did have was really by him but took the name of her 3rd husband but carried the blood of the 2nd husband who was my ancestor as well. Does this make sense?

    I am wondering if anyone else has had any luck with MyHeritage, especially people of Jewish Ancestry. Have you found any unknown relations?


  • #2
    I was able to do some further digging by finding the tree on Geni & located the husband whom I will call “J” whose surname matches my family. His full name suggests a family connection- his 1st name is that if my Uncle & middle name of My ggrandfather’s brother but that could be a coincidence. He was born in 1886. My great grandfather whom I will call “D” was born in 1862. So I was able to find the names of J’s parents. They do not match the names of my great grandfather’s parents so if the link comes from that line J’s grandfather & my great grandfather D’s grandfather must be the same person. I have not been able to find the name of J’s grandfather to prove this & not sure if I will be able to. If not than I have no idea how they are related ???

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    • #3
      When they're making predictions like that it is based on averages. A 1st Cousin Twice Removed prediction can just as easily be a 2nd Cousin. Being based on averages, the relationship could also potentially be "a step" further away or even a step closer if they're a bit more of an outlier.

      1C2R is a "6 step separation" prediction, so anything within that realm is very possible and stuff just outside of that likewise has a probability, it just becomes a matter of ruling out, or ruling in, the various options until you find an answer.

      Of course, you're also talking about Jewish populations here, so endogamy is likely to add some curveballs to the mix, so from my understanding, don't be surprised if the match is more distant than predicted.

      Simplified breakdown: (Other combinations exist)
      1 step - Parent/Child
      2 step - Sibling
      3 step - Half-Sibling
      4 step - 1st Cousin
      5 step - 1st Cousin Once removed
      6 step - 2nd Cousin
      Last edited by bartarl260; 20th December 2018, 09:52 AM.

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      • #4
        I have to question any prediction of "1st cousin twice removed" based only on total shared cM, because the predicted amount (in the range of 75 to 360 cM, with about 95 percent probability, from the highly regarded "DNA Detectives Autosomal Statistics Chart" -- find it with a Google search), is EXACTLY THE SAME as the predicted total cM for 2nd cousin and half 1st cousin once removed. I don't think it's responsible for a vendor to specify "1st cousin twice removed" when there is no evidence to suggest that relationship in preference to the other possibilities. Doing so keeps you from understanding what other possibilities exist!

        And, since you reported 148 cM, let's see what other possibilities are available on the DNA Detectives Autosomal Statistics Chart. The range 30 to 215 cM applies to 2nd cousin once removed, half second cousin, 1st cousin three times removed, and half 1st cousin twice removed. None of the other ranges overlap with your degree of matching, although there is always a possibility that something in that residual 5 percent of exceptional cases could turn up!

        At least, there seem to be too many shared cM for a third cousin, so the match should be closer than that! You will have to draw out all of the possible trees, analyze the relationships (there are some good diagrams on the internet showing how to count those "removed" relationships), and try to find evidence to rule them out, until you are left, we hope, with just one tree that could be the correct one. I have a feeling you will need more evidence, so don't give up!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by John McCoy View Post
          I have to question any prediction of "1st cousin twice removed" based only on total shared cM, because the predicted amount (in the range of 75 to 360 cM, with about 95 percent probability, from the highly regarded "DNA Detectives Autosomal Statistics Chart" -- find it with a Google search), is EXACTLY THE SAME as the predicted total cM for 2nd cousin and half 1st cousin once removed. I don't think it's responsible for a vendor to specify "1st cousin twice removed" when there is no evidence to suggest that relationship in preference to the other possibilities. Doing so keeps you from understanding what other possibilities exist!
          Ancestry at least has a "help" option you can click on which will present charts demonstrating other ways a person could be related at a given level of matching.

          I'm assuming they went for "X removed" based on some kind of analysis of DNA Segments in addition to the raw shared DNA number, but so much of what they're doing in making those predictions is black box magic that it's a wild guess for anybody but the programmers on what exactly they were doing/thinking on that one.

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