Turks are Anatolian under the hood, somewhat more Greek than Armenian

My post, Are Turks Armenians Under The Hood?, attracted a little bit of controversy. The main criticism, which was a valid one, is that I did not sample Anatolian Greeks. A reader passed on three Anatolian Greek samples. I also added a Cypriot data set. To my mild surprise, the Anatolian Greeks and Cypriots cluster together, at the end of the Greece cline toward West Asians. Therefore, for further analysis, I pooled the three Greeks with the Cypriots.

Additionally, there are two Balkan Turk samples. Even on the PCA it’s pretty clear that they’re genetically very different from the other Turks (one of them is from what has become Bulgaria), though the shift toward East Asians indicates that Turkification is very rarely a matter purely of religious conversion to Islam and assimilation of the Turkish language (obviously it initially is for many people, but these people then intermarry with those with some East Asian ancestry).

One of the major problems is that the Armenian sample and the Anatolian Greek/Cypriot sample are genetically very close. This is obvious in the Fst distance. This is also totally reasonable since both populations occupy Anatolia, and historically there would have been a lot of gene flow between the two groups through isolation-by-distance dynamics.

The Turk position closer to East Asians is due to their East Asian admixture.

You can see it in the admixture plot too. As we all know there is definitely some northern admixture in the mainland Greeks. I haven’t bothered to check with the Mycenaean paper, but I assume that some of this is due to the migration of Slavs after much of the Balkans was abandoned after the reign of Maurice.

Of course, I ran Treemix too. Again, the closeness of the Anatolian Greeks/Cypriots and the Armenians is an issue in making a definitive conclusion.

In terms of drift the Turks seem about as far from Anatolian Greeks as Armenians. There’s the gene flow you’d expect, there are two from East Asians to Turks. I think that’s due to the East Asian source being somewhat heterogeneous, and the Dai outgroup not modeling the source populations perfectly.

Finally, there’s the f3 statistics. They basically show what I’m saying above: Armenians and Anatolian Greeks are both good model sources for Turks. The likely truth is that there is gene flow from all across Anatolia into these Turkish samples.

Group X1 X2 f3 z
Turkey anatolian_cypriot Dai -0.0029 -36.3940
Turkey Armenians Dai -0.0026 -34.2083
Turkey Greece3 Dai -0.0025 -32.7389
Turkey Georgian Dai -0.0026 -30.8836
Turkey Greece2 Dai -0.0024 -29.5462
Turkey GreekCentral Dai -0.0025 -23.6454
Turkey Greece1 Dai -0.0026 -23.0283
Turkey GreekThessaly Dai -0.0024 -20.1595
Turkey Armenians Lithuanians -0.0005 -11.5356
Turkey Lithuanians Dai -0.0012 -10.7473
Turkey Georgian Lithuanians -0.0004 -7.9691
GreekThessaly Armenians Lithuanians -0.0006 -6.6390
GreekThessaly anatolian_cypriot Lithuanians -0.0006 -6.3748
GreekThessaly Greece3 Lithuanians -0.0005 -4.6347
Greece2 anatolian_cypriot Lithuanians -0.0008 -15.7114
Greece2 Armenians Lithuanians -0.0008 -14.4083
Greece2 Greece3 Lithuanians -0.0005 -10.4508
Greece2 Georgian Lithuanians -0.0005 -8.2727
Greece1 anatolian_cypriot Lithuanians -0.0006 -6.5563
Greece1 Armenians Lithuanians -0.0005 -6.3712
Greece1 Greece3 Lithuanians -0.0004 -4.7896
Greece1 Georgian Lithuanians -0.0003 -3.1104
balkan_turk Greece1 Dai -0.0024 -7.1425
balkan_turk GreekThessaly Dai -0.0021 -6.1764
balkan_turk GreekCentral Dai -0.0021 -5.7848
balkan_turk Greece2 Dai -0.0019 -5.6794
balkan_turk anatolian_cypriot Dai -0.0019 -5.5944
balkan_turk Armenians Lithuanians -0.0014 -5.3207
balkan_turk Greece3 Dai -0.0017 -5.0815
balkan_turk Lithuanians Dai -0.0017 -5.0190

10 thoughts on “Turks are Anatolian under the hood, somewhat more Greek than Armenian

  1. Thank you for your analyses, Razib. The f3 stats, ADMIXTURE and PCA seem to show pretty well the fact that genetically (in addition to historically) Anatolian Turks seem to have received their native ancestry (by native I mean native to Anatolia and environs such as Armenia) much more from Anatolian Greeks than from Armenians or any other population. The Anatolian Greek samples I sent you are from central Anatolian Greeks, I chose them because they seem to represent the average Anatolian Greek genetics well by geography and demographics and historically seem to be the Anatolian Greek group Turkic incomers to Anatolia (Oghuz/Turcomans) seem to have mixed with most. Cypriots are genetically close to central Anatolian Greeks, but still are differentiated from them with their higher Levantine-like ancestry and lower Caucasus-like and Northern European-like ancestries as can be seen in their GEDmatch calculator results. By the way, eastern Pontian Greek samples are genetically much closer to Armenians than to central Anatolian Greeks (which makes perfect sense geographically), but I did not send you their samples because they represent the average Anatolian Greek genetics way less than central Anatolian Greeks do and are irrelevant historically if we are analyzing the average Anatolian Turkish genetics. Lastly, the East Eurasian ancestry found among Anatolian and Balkan Turks seem to be close to the one found among Central Asian and southern Siberian Turkic populations and Mongolians, which also makes sense historically.

    As for the Balkan Turkish samples, they seem to be genetically closer to Bulgarians than to Balkan Greeks, which makes sense because those Balkan Turkish samples are both from the historically Bulgarian-populated areas rather than the Greek-populated ones, so inclusion of Bulgarians would be useful for their genetic analysis IMO.

  2. Better than the other post except the title and you didn’t add Turkmens to compare. Dai is -i think- okayish to calculate the mongoloid admixture in Turks but not Central Asian genetic contribution. Other than that it’s mostly okay.

    And I think Turks appear more “Greek” than Armenian because Turks are shifted towards Indo-Europeans more than both populations. In Central Asia you can also find a lot of Yamnaya steppe genetic legacy.

  3. Razib, does this mean the the “Turks” of modern Anatolia have been assimilated to Turkish Muslim culture by the elites. I.e does this support and elite driven cultural change model as opposed to a mass migration and displacement model.

    I do note that in the population exchanges after the Greco Turkish War of 1919-1922 many Greek Speaking Muslims were sent from Greece to Anatolia.

  4. And I think Turks appear more “Greek” than Armenian because Turks are shifted towards Indo-Europeans more than both populations. In Central Asia you can also find a lot of Yamnaya steppe genetic legacy.

    your prior is that greeks have more yamna drift than armenians? is that a fact? i haven’t checked.

    i have steppe samples with good overlap with this data. i can check tonight.

  5. @Walter read what Razib wrote

    “though the shift toward East Asians indicates that Turkification is very rarely a matter purely of religious conversion to Islam and assimilation of the Turkish language (obviously it initially is for many people, but these people then intermarry with those with some East Asian ancestry).”

    TL;DR: Razib doesn’t say that. It’s actually the opposite.

    Razib does not say “Turks are assimilated X” but rather Turks are a mix. The title is kinda misleading. But he didn’t use Turkmens like he did in the last article to compare Turks to Central Asians. He uses Dai instead but this just tells us the average mongoloid component in Turks. Which is already known (10% to 15+%) and does not tell us anything new.. If you’re interested you can check this average east eurasian dna of Turks (based on personal results of Turks)

    https://i.imgur.com/a4j9ZBE.png

    also the elite dominance theor” was debunked years ago. There was a big migration from Southern Central Asia into Anatolia. This is supported by both genetic and historic facts.

    here if you’re interested. read these studies

    https://bmcgenomics.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2164-15-963

    This study’s method is similar to Razib’s method. Even the pca from the study is similar. Here the pca btw

    http://media.springernature.com/lw785/springer-static/image/art%3A10.1186%2F1471-2164-15-963/MediaObjects/12864_2014_Article_6660_Fig2_HTML.jpg

    and about that “elite assimilation”. suggest you to read this.

    http://etd.lib.metu.edu.tr/upload/12607764/index.pdf

    “Moreover, results pointed out that language in Anatolia might not have been replaced by the elites, but by a large group of people”

    Wish he used Turkmen samples though. An another blog compared the Turks to Turkmens of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan and Uzbeks and to Anatolian Greeks, Armenians and Bronze Age Anatolians. Results were interesting.

    @Razib

    I meant yes Turks are more Yamnaya shifted than both Anatolian Greeks and Armenians. And Greeks, whether from Anatolia or Mainland, are more Yamnaya shifted than Armenians.

  6. @Adsız

    He uses Dai instead but this just tells us the average mongoloid component in Turks. Which is already known (10% to 15+%) and does not tell us anything new.. If you’re interested you can check this average east eurasian dna of Turks (based on personal results of Turks)

    https://i.imgur.com/a4j9ZBE.png

    I’d say based on the autosomal results of Anatolian Turks in our genetic project that Anatolian Turks are on the average 9-10% East Eurasian-admixed. That average drops a bit if you exclude western Anatolian Turks, who in general have the highest East Eurasian ancestry among Anatolian Turks. Of course by Anatolian Turk I mean those Turks whose all known ancestry is from Turks of Anatolia, thus excluding those with known Balkan Turkish or other ancestry.

    also the elite dominance theor” was debunked years ago. There was a big migration from Southern Central Asia into Anatolia. This is supported by both genetic and historic facts.

    Elite dominance is a very broad concept and includes many different types of dominance by an elite group, it does not necessarily mean the elite is too small to have a significant genetic impact on the population they assimilate and admix with. Turkification of Anatolia can be described as an elite dominance because Oghuz/Turcomans and their leaders constituted the group that politically and militarily dominated Anatolian locals and imposed on them their own religion, language and culture, however in great number the dominating group might or might not be.

    here if you’re interested. read these studies

    https://bmcgenomics.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2164-15-963

    This study’s method is similar to Razib’s method. Even the pca from the study is similar. Here the pca btw

    http://media.springernature.com/lw785/springer-static/image/art%3A10.1186%2F1471-2164-15-963/MediaObjects/12864_2014_Article_6660_Fig2_HTML.jpg

    That study is interesting in terms of its Turkish samples, but it is insufficient when it comes to the representation of the genetics of pre-Turkish Anatolia. Unlike Razib, they do not use Anatolian Greeks, Armenians and/or Cypriots, but use Tuscans and Iberians to represent it, which is not a good idea either genetically or historically.

    and about that “elite assimilation”. suggest you to read this.

    http://etd.lib.metu.edu.tr/upload/12607764/index.pdf

    That study is from 2006 and outdated in many ways.

    Wish he used Turkmen samples though. An another blog compared the Turks to Turkmens of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan and Uzbeks and to Anatolian Greeks, Armenians and Bronze Age Anatolians. Results were interesting.

    Razib does not aim to estimate the proportion of Central Asian incomer ancestry in Turks here or in his previous post. That estimation is a pretty tough one due to the lack of proper representatives of the Central Asian incomers among modern populations and the current lack of ancient DNA genomes from them.

    I meant yes Turks are more Yamnaya shifted than both Anatolian Greeks and Armenians. And Greeks, whether from Anatolia or Mainland, are more Yamnaya shifted than Armenians.

    I suggest you do some nMonte analyses to make your point here.

  7. “I’d say based on the autosomal results of Anatolian Turks in our genetic project that Anatolian Turks are on the average 9-10% East Eurasian-admixed. That average drops “a bit if you exclude western Anatolian Turks, who in general have the highest East Eurasian ancestry among Anatolian Turks. Of course by Anatolian Turk I mean those Turks whose all known ancestry is from Turks of Anatolia, thus excluding those with known Balkan Turkish or other ancestry.”

    There are Turks from Central and Northeastern Anatolia who score above 10% too. But the broad average should be 10%. Imo. People who score above 10% are regular Turks. Anyone above 15% is probably either a Yörük/Manav or a Turk from Ordu/Giresun

    “Elite dominance is a very broad concept and includes many different types of dominance by an elite group, it does not necessarily mean the elite is too small to have a significant genetic impact on the population they assimilate and admix with”

    Actually one of the studies talk about this elite dominance and how small in numbers the elites should be. It said something like if the elites are 10% of a population then it could be considered elite domination. However we do not know the exact numbers Oghuz Turks that came to Anatolia and the Turks probably also depopulated some parts of Anatolia gradually. In my opinion they made up 20-40% of Anatolia depending on the location.

    “Turkification of Anatolia can be described as an elite dominance because Oghuz/Turcomans and their leaders constituted the group that politically and militarily dominated Anatolian locals and imposed on them their own religion, language and culture, however in great number the dominating group might or might not be.”

    Religion was not forced upon non muslim locals of Anatolia. Because Christians paid jizya and this benefited the Turkish states greatly in terms of economy. Language wasnt forced either. The only Turkish state that forced Turkish language was Karamanid Emirate and they ruled only a part of Central Anatolia.

    “That study is interesting in terms of its Turkish samples, but it is insufficient when it comes to the representation of the genetics of pre-Turkish Anatolia. Unlike Razib, they do not use Anatolian Greeks, Armenians and/or Cypriots, but use Tuscans and Iberians to represent it, which is not a good idea either genetically or historically.”

    The study is similar because both studies compare Turks to Asians (but the study i sent also compares Turks to Africans) and Caucasoid populations. Razib’s study is more detailed and uses better proxy populations except for dai.

    “That study is from 2006 and outdated in many ways.”

    It is the only detailed study elite domination issue. Feel free to send recent studies if you have any

    “Razib does not aim to estimate the proportion of Central Asian incomer ancestry in Turks here or in his previous post. That estimation is a pretty tough one due to the lack of proper representatives of the Central Asian incomers among modern populations and the current lack of ancient DNA genomes from them.”

    Then this means both articles are pointless and we cant say anything if we dont know anything about Medieval Oghuzes.

  8. OT: There is no comment button available for the most recent post on the Hunnic genetics. Is this intentional?

  9. @Adsız

    There are Turks from Central and Northeastern Anatolia who score above 10% too. But the broad average should be 10%. Imo. People who score above 10% are regular Turks. Anyone above 15% is probably either a Yörük/Manav or a Turk from Ordu/Giresun

    I was talking based on the results of Anatolian Turks in our FTDNA project. Different projects might have different outcomes as a result of different membership. Those results are always subject to change as more people join projects.

    Actually one of the studies talk about this elite dominance and how small in numbers the elites should be. It said something like if the elites are 10% of a population then it could be considered elite domination. However we do not know the exact numbers Oghuz Turks that came to Anatolia and the Turks probably also depopulated some parts of Anatolia gradually. In my opinion they made up 20-40% of Anatolia depending on the location.

    This is a subject that ultimately requires ancient genetic tests, so I do not want to spend my time speculating on it.

    Religion was not forced upon non muslim locals of Anatolia. Because Christians paid jizya and this benefited the Turkish states greatly in terms of economy. Language wasnt forced either. The only Turkish state that forced Turkish language was Karamanid Emirate and they ruled only a part of Central Anatolia.

    I am not talking about a wholesale enforcement of religion, language and culture on the Christian natives of Anatolia by Oghuz/Turcomans or Turkish states but rather about ones that occurred from time to time on a more local scale and that were frequently accompanied by admixture with the enforcers. The established Turkish states did not do much of the enforcements for the reasons you already mentioned, but rather Oghuz/Turcomans did most of them, especially during periods of conquest, ghaza or political instability.

    The study is similar because both studies compare Turks to Asians (but the study i sent also compares Turks to Africans) and Caucasoid populations. Razib’s study is more detailed and uses better proxy populations except for dai.

    In this case Africans are irrelevant, so they can be omitted. Razib’s current analysis’ only significant omission is a more northern East Eurasian population and Bulgarians (Bulgarians are relevant only for Balkan Turks though).

    It is the only detailed study elite domination issue. Feel free to send recent studies if you have any

    We are today living in an age of ancient DNA tests, so I am waiting for an ancient DNA study on the subject.

    Then this means both articles are pointless and we cant say anything if we dont know anything about Medieval Oghuzes.

    Not totally pointless, but insufficient indeed. Unlike those articles, Razib did not try to give answers to questions that he cannot answer satiably with the current data in his posts.

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