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Genetic origins of the Minoans and Mycenaeans

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  • Genetic origins of the Minoans and Mycenaeans

    Here's a link to a new study using ancient DNA - Unfortunately, it's behind a pay wall.

    However, the supplementary information is available in a pdf file at and it has useful information from the study. Also, there's a summary report in Science, the magazine of the AAAS, at

    Here's an important quote from the Science article: "The ancient Mycenaeans and Minoans were most closely related to each other, and they both got three-quarters of their DNA from early farmers who lived in Greece and southwestern Anatolia, which is now part of Turkey, the team reports today in Nature. Both cultures additionally inherited DNA from people from the eastern Caucasus, near modern-day Iran, suggesting an early migration of people from the east after the early farmers settled there but before Mycenaeans split from Minoans." Pages 43-45 of the pdf file with supplementary information discuss modeling in the study which does indicate that there was some contribution by steppe/Caucasus populations to the DNA of mainland Greece.

    Perhaps this explains why the AncientOrigins percentages for Metal Age Invader given in Family Finder by FTDNA are slightly higher for those with a high Southeast Europe (Italy/Greece/Balkans) percentage than those with northern European ancestry. This study may be showing that southeastern Europe had an earlier migration from the steppes and/or Caucasus than northern and eastern Europe had, so southeastern Europe got an "extra dose" of the DNA that steppe populations brought into the rest of Europe about 5,000 years ago.