Thursday, April 30, 2009

Quotations from ancient Egypt and the Nile Valley from mainstream research studies

Quotations from research studies

Recent study finds the ancient Egyptians had a tropical body plan like sub-Saharan 'black' Africans and were not cold-adapted like European type populations

"The raw values in Table 6 suggest that Egyptians had the “super-Negroid” body plan described by Robins (1983).. This pattern is supported by Figure 7 (a plot of population mean femoral and tibial lengths; data from Ruff, 1994), which indicates that the Egyptians generally have tropical body plans. Of the Egyptian samples, only the Badarian and Early Dynastic period populations have shorter tibiae than predicted from femoral length. Despite these differences, all samples lie relatively clustered together as compared to the other populations." (Zakrzewski, S.R. (2003). "Variation in ancient Egyptian stature and body proportions". American Journal of Physical Anthropology 121 (3): 219-229.

Ancient Egyptians most related to other Africans and are part of a Nilotic continuity rather than something Mediterranean or Middle Eastern.

"Certainly there was some foreign admixture [in Egypt], but basically a homogeneous African population had lived in the Nile Valley from ancient to modern times... [the] Badarian people, who developed the earliest Predynastic Egyptian culture, already exhibited the mix of North African and Sub-Saharan physical traits that have typified Egyptians ever since (Hassan 1985; Yurco 1989; Trigger 1978; Keita 1990.. et al.,)... The peoples of Egypt, the Sudan, and much of East African Ethiopia and Somalia are now generally regarded as a Nilotic continuity, with widely ranging physical features (complexions light to dark, various hair and craniofacial types) but with powerful common cultural traits, including cattle pastoralist traditions.. (Frank Yurco, "An Egyptological Review," 1996 -in Mary R. Lefkowitz and Guy MacLean Rogers, Black Athena Revisited, 1996, The University of North Carolina Press, p. 62-100)

Modern DNA studies find even though some African peoples look different, they are genetically related through the PN2 transition clade of the Y-chromosone. Thus light-skinned African Libyans and dark-skinned Zulus are all genetically related Africans ,even though they don't look exactly the same.

"But the Y-chromosome clade defined by the PN2 transition (PN2/M35, PN2/M2) shatters the boundaries of phenotypically defined races and true breeding populations across a great geographical expanse. African peoples with a range of skin colors, hair forms and physiognomies have substantial percentages of males whose Y chromosomes form closely related clades with each other, but not with others who are phenotypically similar. The individuals in the morphologically or geographically defined 'races' are not characterized by 'private' distinct lineages restricted to each of them." (S O Y Keita, R A Kittles, et al. "Conceptualizing human variation," Nature Genetics 36, S17 - S20 (2004)

"Recall that the Horn–Nile Valley crania show, as a group, the largest overlap with other regions. A review of the recent literature indicates that there are male lineage ties between African peoples who have been traditionally labeled as being ‘‘racially’’ different, with ‘‘racially’’ implying an ontologically deep divide. The PN2 transition, a Y chromosome marker, defines a lineage (within the YAPþ derived haplogroup E or III) that emerged in Africa probably before the last glacial maximum, but after the migration of modern humans from Africa (see Semino et al., 2004). This mutation forms a clade that has two daughter subclades (defined by the biallelic markers M35/215 (or 215/M35) and M2) that unites numerous phenotypically variant African populations from the supra-Saharan, Saharan, and sub-Saharan regions.."
(S.O.Y Keita. Exploring northeast African metric craniofacial variation at the individual level: A comparative study using principal component analysis. Am. J. Hum. Biol. 16:679–689, 2004.)

"Africa contains tremendous cultural, linguistic and genetic diversity, and has more than 2,000 distinct ethnic groups and languages.. Studies using mitochondrial (mt)DNA and nuclear DNA markers consistently indicate that Africa is the most genetically diverse region of the world." (Tishkoff SA, Williams SM., Genetic analysis of African populations: human evolution and complex disease. Nature Reviews Genetics. 2002 Aug (8):611-21.)

DNA of some modern Egyptians found a genetic ancestral heritage to East Africa:

"The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) diversity of 58 individuals from Upper Egypt, more than half (34 individuals) from Gurna, whose population has an ancient cultural history, were studied by sequencing the control-region and screening diagnostic RFLP markers. This sedentary population presented similarities to the Ethiopian population by the L1 and L2 macrohaplogroup frequency (20.6%), by the West Eurasian component (defined by haplogroups H to K and T to X) and particularly by a high frequency (17.6%) of haplogroup M1. We statistically and phylogenetically analysed and compared the Gurna population with other Egyptian, Near East and sub-Saharan Africa populations; AMOVA and Minimum Spanning Network analysis showed that the Gurna population was not isolated from neighbouring populations. Our results suggest that the Gurna population has conserved the trace of an ancestral genetic structure from an ancestral East African population, characterized by a high M1 haplogroup frequency. The current structure of the Egyptian population may be the result of further influence of neighbouring populations on this ancestral population."
(Stevanovitch A, Gilles A, Bouzaid E, et al. (2004) Mitochondrial DNA sequence diversity in a sedentary population from Egypt.Ann Hum Genet. 68(Pt 1):23-39.)

Other DNA quotes from S.O.Y. Keita

Recent DNA studies of the Sudan show genetic unity and linkage between the Sudanic, Horn, Egyptian, Nubian and other Nilotic peoples, confirming earlier skeletal/cranial studies and historical data. (Yurco (1989, 1996), Keita (1993,2004, 2005) Lovell (1999), Zakrewski (2003, 2007) et. al). Of note is that DNA data shows that one of the oldest Egyptian populations, the Copts, have a significant frequency of the B-M60 marker, indicating early colonization of Egypt by Nilotics in the state formation period.


"Haplogroup E-M78, however, is more widely distributed and is thought to have an origin in eastern African. More recently, this haplogroup has been carefully dissected and was found to depict several well-established subclades with defined geographical clustering (Cruciani et al., 2006, 2007). Although this haplogroup is common to most Sudanese populations, it has exceptionally high frequency among populations like those of western Sudan (particularly Darfur) and the Beja in eastern Sudan... Although the PC plot places the Beja and Amhara from Ethiopia in one sub-cluster based on shared frequencies of the haplogroup J1, the distribution of M78 subclades (Table 2) indicates that the Beja are perhaps related as well to the Oromo on the basis of the considerable frequencies of E-V32 among Oromo in comparison to Amhara (Cruciani et al., 2007)...

These findings affirm the historical contact between Ethiopia and eastern Sudan (1998), and the fact that these populations speak languages of the Afroasiatic family tree reinforces the strong correlation between linguistic and genetic diversity." (Cavalli-Sforza, 1997).

"Genetic continuum of the Nubians with their kin in southern Egypt is indicated by comparable frequencies of E-V12 the predominant M78 subclade among southern Egyptians."

"The Copt samples displayed a most interesting Y-profile, enough (as much as that of Gaalien in Sudan) to suggest that they actually represent a living record of the peopling of Egypt. The significant frequency of B-M60 in this group might be a relic of a history of colonization of southern Egypt probably by Nilotics in the early state formation, something that conforms both to recorded history and to Egyptian mythology."
(Hisham Y. Hassan 1, Peter A. Underhill 2, Luca L. Cavalli-Sforza 2, Muntaser E. Ibrahim 1. (2008). Y-chromosome variation among Sudanese: Restricted gene flow, concordance with language, geography, and history. Am J Phys Anthropology, 2008.)

Older research notes the physical makeup of the Copts, now confirmed by recent DNA data avove:

"In Libya, which is mostly desert and oasis, there is a visible Negroid element in the sedentary populations, and at the same is true of the Fellahin of Egypt, whether Copt or Muslim. Osteological studies have shown that the Negroid element was stronger in predynastic times than at present, reflecting an early movement northward along the banks of the Nile, which were then heavily forested." (Encyclopedia Britannica 1984 ed. "Populations, Human")

Haplogroup E3A and E3B represent more than 70% of the Y-chromosones on the African continent, with varying proportions found in different parts of the continent. In some African populations for example, E3B exceeds 80%. Migrations out of Africa, are responsible for the spread of E3b to Europe. Non-Africans thus acquired a sub-set f African genes through this migration.

"In Europe, the overall frequency pattern of haplogroup E-M78 does not support the hypothesis of a uniform spread of people from a single parental Near Eastern population... The Y chromosome specific biallelic marker DYS271 defines the most common haplogroup (E3a) currently found in sub-Saharan Africa. A sister clade, E3b (E-M215), is rare in sub-Saharan Africa, but very common in northern and eastern Africa. On the whole, these two clades represent more than 70% of the Y chromosomes of the African continent. A third clade belonging to E3 (E3c or E-M329) has been recently reported to be present only in eastern Africa, at low frequencies.. The new topology of the E3 haplogroup is suggestive of a relatively recent eastern African origin for the majority of the chromosomes presently found in sub-Saharan Africa."

"In conclusion, we detected the signatures of several distinct processes of migration and/or recurrent gene flow associated with the dispersal of haplogroup E3b lineages. Early events involved the dispersal of E-M78d chromosomes from eastern Africa into and out of Africa, as well as the introduction of the E-M34 subclade into Africa from the Near East. Later events involved short-range migrations within Africa (E-M78? and E-V6) and from northern Africa into Europe (E-M81 and E-M78ß), as well as an important range expansion from the Balkans to western and southern-central Europe (E-M78a). This latter expansion was the main contributor to the present distribution of E3b chromosomes in Europe."

(Cruciani, F, et. al. (2004) Phylogeographic Analysis of Haplogroup E3b (E-M215) Y Chromosomes Reveals Multiple Migratory Events Within and Out Of Africa, Am J Hum Genet. 74(5): 1014–1022.)

Somalis link much more heavily with African populations such as those in Kenya and Ethiopia than Middle Eastern or European ones according to DNA evidence. Eurasian genes only accounted for about 15% of the mix among Somalis, typically associated with recent Arab influence. On such key common DNA markers as E3b1, Europeans only weighed in at 5%, and Middle Easterners at approximately 6%. The overwhelming link of Somalis- over 85% of the total is with Africans. Kenya and Ethiopia are located in "sub-Saharan" Africa.

"The high frequency (77.6%) of haplogroup E3b1 was characteristic of male Somalis. The frequency of E3b1 was significantly lower in Ethiopian Oromos (35.9%), Ethiopian Amharas (22.9%), Egyptians (20.0%), Sudanese (17.5%), Kenyans (15.1%),10 Iraqis (6.3%), Northern Africans (6.1%), Southern Europeans (0.5–5.1%) and sub-Saharan populations." (Sanchez et al.,(2005) High frequencies of Y chromosome lineages characterized by E3b1, DYS19-11, DYS392-12 in Somali males, Eu J of Hum Genet (2005) 13, 856–866)

More on Haplogroups here:

More on Haplogroup E here: from GENEBASE:
"E1 is the predominant subclade, while E2 is much less frequent. Within E1, E1b1 (defined by SNP P2) is the most abundant and widespread representative, and accounts for most of Haplogroup E worldwide. E1b1 lineages vary in abundance over Africa and three main regions are evident from the distribution peaks of three subclades: E1b1a (SNP M2) in Sub-Saharan Africa, E1b1b1a (SNP M78) in East Africa and E1b1b1b (SNP M81) in Northwest Africa. The difference in geographic location of Haplogroup E subclades also aligns with distinct language groups supporting the idea that there is prevailing father to son transmission of language in Africa. "

Northern Egypt shows more physical variation than the south, but not necessarily as part of any significant 'race' mix, but local, built-in variation. They were closer to southerners than any other peoples. In comparisons with "Middle Eastern" populations of the same ancient period, the Egyptians link more closely with other Africans than the Middle Easterners. Africans vary in how they look because they have the highest built-in molecular diversity to begin with.

"..sample populations available from northern Egypt from before the 1st Dynasty (Merimda, Maadi and Wadi Digla) turn out to be significantly different from sample populations from early Palestine and Byblos, suggesting a lack of common ancestors over a long time. If there was a south-north cline variation along the Nile valley it did not, from this limited evidence, continue smoothly on into southern Palestine. The limb-length proportions of males from the Egyptian sites group them with Africans rather than with Europeans." (Barry Kemp, "Ancient Egypt Anatomy of a Civilisation. (2005) Routledge. p. 52-60)

"Individuals from different geographical regions frequently plotted near each other, revealing aspects of variation at the level of individuals that is obscured by concentrating on the most distinctive facial traits once used to construct ‘‘types.’’The high level of African interindividual variation in craniometric pattern is reminiscent of the great level of molecular diversity found in Africa." (S.O.Y Keita. Exploring northeast African metric craniofacial variation at the individual level: A comparative study using principal component analysis. Am. J. Hum. Biol. 16:679–689, 2004.)

Quote on northern Egypt analysis- the Qarunian (Faiyum) remains (c. 7000 BC)
"The body was that of a forty-year old woman with a height of about 1.6 meters, who was of a more modern racial type than the classic 'Mechtoid' of the Fakhurian culture (see pp. 65-6), being generally more gracile, having large teeth and thick jaws bearing some resemblance to the modern 'negroid' type." (Beatrix Midant-Reynes, Ian Shaw (2000). The Prehistory of Egypt. Wiley-Blackwell. pg. 82)

Modern studies show diversity in how people look is heavily based on distance from sub-Saharan Africa, not merely climate. In genetically diverse Africa, broad-nosed people live on the cool or cold mountain slopes of East Africa or the hot, dry Sahara, and narrow-nosed peoples like many Fulani like in the wet tropics of West Africa. Yellowish-skinned San tribes live in the hot zones of Southern Africa.

"The relative importance of ancient demography and climate in determining worldwide patterns of human within-population phenotypic diversity is still open to debate. Several morphometric traits have been argued to be under selection by climatic factors, but it is unclear whether climate affects the global decline in morphological diversity with increasing geographical distance from sub-Saharan Africa. Using a large database of male and female skull measurements, we apply an explicit framework to quantify the relative role of climate and distance from Africa. We show that distance from sub-Saharan Africa is the sole determinant of human within-population phenotypic diversity, while climate plays no role. By selecting the most informative set of traits, it was possible to explain over half of the worldwide variation in phenotypic diversity. These results mirror those previously obtained for genetic markers and show that ‘bones and molecules’ are in perfect agreement for humans." (Distance from Africa, not climate, explains within-population phenotypic diversity in humans. (2008) by: Lia Betti, François Balloux, William Amos, Tsunehiko Hanihara, Andrea Manica, Proceedings B: Biological Sciences, 2008/12/02)

Analysis of skeletal and cranial remains reveals that the ancient Egyptians of the early Dynastic and pre-Dynastic phases, link closer to nearby Saharan, Sudanic and East African populations than Mediterranean and Middle Eastern peoples. Greeks, Romans, Hyskos, Arabs and others were to appear later in Egyptian history. Craniometric studies generally place ancient Upper Egyptian populations closer to the range of tropical Africans in the Nile Valley and East Africa than to Mediterraneans, or Middle Easterners.

S. O. Y. Keita, "Studies and Comments on Ancient Egyptian Biological Relationships," History in Africa 20 (1993) 129-54

"Overall, when the Egyptian crania are evaluated in a Near Eastern (Lachish) versus African (Kerma, Kebel Moya, Ashanti) context) the affinity is with the Africans. The Sudan and Palestine are the most appropriate comparative regions which would have 'donated' people, along with the Sahara and Maghreb. Archaeology validates looking to these regions for population flow (see Hassan 1988)... Egyptian groups showed less overall affinity to Palestinian and Byzantine remains than to other African series, especially Sudanese." (Keita 1993)

"When the unlikely relationships [Indian matches] and eliminated, the Egyptian series are more similar overall to other African series than to European or Near Eastern (Byzantine or Palestinian) series." (Keita 1993)

"Populations and cultures now found south of the desert roamed far to the north. The culture of Upper Egypt, which became dynastic Egyptian civilization, could fairly be called a Sudanese transplant."(Egypt and Sub-Saharan Africa: Their Interaction. Encyclopedia of Precolonial Africa, by Joseph O. Vogel, AltaMira Press, Walnut Creek, California (1997), pp. 465-472 )

"Analysis of crania is the traditional approach to assessing ancient population origins, relationships, and diversity. In studies based on anatomical traits and measurements of crania, similarities have been found between Nile Valley crania from 30,000, 20,000 and 12,000 years ago and various African remains from more recent times (see Thoma 1984; Brauer and Rimbach 1990; Angel and Kelley 1986; Keita 1993). Studies of crania from southern predynastic Egypt, from the formative period (4000-3100 B.C.), show them usually to be more similar to the crania of ancient Nubians, Kushites, Saharans, or modern groups from the Horn of Africa than to those of dynastic northern Egyptians or ancient or modern southern Europeans."
(S. O. Y and A.J. Boyce, "The Geographical Origins and Population Relationships of Early Ancient Egyptians", in Egypt in Africa, Theodore Celenko (ed), Indiana University Press, 1996, pp. 20-33)

"There is no archaeological, linguistic, or historical data which indicate a European or Asiatic invasion of, or migration to, the Nile Valley during First Dynasty times. Previous concepts about the origin of the First Dynasty Egyptians as being somehow external to the Nile Valley or less native are not supported by archaeology... In summary, the Abydos First Dynasty royal tomb contents reveal a notable craniometric heterogeneity. Southerners predominate. (Kieta, S. (1992) Further Studies of Crania From Ancient Northern Africa: An Analysis of Crania From First Dynasty Egyptian Tombs, Using Multiple Discriminant Functions. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY 87:245-254)"

"The predominant craniometric pattern in the Abydos royal tombs is 'southern' (tropical African variant), and this is consistent with what would be expected based on the literature and other results (Keita, 1990). This pattern is seen in both group and unknown analyses... Archaeology and history seem to provide the most parsimonious explanation for the variation in the royal tombs at Abydos.. Tomb design suggests the presence of northerners in the south in late Nakada times (Hoffman, 1988) when the unification probably took place. Delta names are attached to some of the tombs at Abydos (Gardiner, 1961; Yurco, 1990, personal communication), thus perhaps supporting Petrie's (1939) and Gardiner's contention that north-south marriages were undertaken to legitimize the hegemony of the south. The courtiers of northern elites would have accompanied them.

Given all of the above, it is probably not possible to view the Abydos royal tomb sample as representative of the general southern Upper Egyptian population of the time. Southern elites and/or their descendants eventually came to be buried in the north (Hoffman, 1988). Hence early Second Dynasty kings and Djoser (Dynasty 111) (Hayes, 1953) and his descendants are not buried in Abydos. Petrie (1939) states that the Third Dynasty, buried in the north, was of Sudanese origin, but southern Egypt is equally likely. This perhaps explains Harris and Weeks' (1973) suggested findings of southern morphologies in some Old Kingdom Giza remains, also verified in portraiture (Drake, 1987). Further study would be required to ascertain trends in the general population of both regions. The strong Sudanese affinity noted in the unknown analyses may reflect the Nubian interactions with upper Egypt in predynastic times prior to Egyptian unification (Williams, 1980,1986)..." (S. Keita (1992) Further Studies of Crania From Ancient Northern Africa: An Analysis of Crania From First Dynasty Egyptian Tombs, Using Multiple Discriminant Functions. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY 87:245-254)

Afrocentric critic C. Loring Brace's 2005 study groups ancient Egyptian populations like the Naqada closer to Nubians and Somalis than European, Mediterranean or Middle Eastern populations. Brace's study shows that the closest European linking with Africans in Egypt or Nubia are Middle Stone Age Portugese and Neolithics, OLDER populations more closely resembling AFRICANS than modern Europeans. Early Neolithic populations, like the Nautifians, in what is now Israel, show sub-Saharan 'negroid' affinities. (Brace, et al. The questionable contribution of the Neolithic and the Bronze Age to European craniofacial form, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006 January 3; 103(1): p. 242-247.)

"The Niger-Congo speakers, Congo, Dahomey and Haya, cluster closely with each other and a bit less closely with the Nubian sample, both the recent and the Bronze Age Nubians, and more remotely with the Naqada Bronze Age sample of Egypt, the modern Somalis, and the Arabic-speaking Fellaheen (farmers) of Israel. When those samples are separated and run in a single analysis as in Fig. 1, there clearly is a tie between them that is diluted the farther one gets from sub-Saharan Africa" (Brace, 2005)

"The surprise is that the Neolithic peoples of Europe and their Bronze Age successors are not closely related to the modern inhabitants, although the prehistoric/modern ties are somewhat more apparent in southern Europe. It is a further surprise that the Epipalaeolithic Natufian of Israel from whom the Neolithic realm was assumed to arise has a clear link to Sub-Saharan Africa... Interestingly enough, however, the small Natufian sample falls between the Niger-Congo group and the other samples used. Fig. 2 shows the plot produced by the first two canonical variates, but the same thing happens when canonical variates 1 and 3 (not shown here) are used. This placement suggests that there may have been a Sub-Saharan African element in the make-up of the Natufians (the putative ancestors of the subsequent Neolithic), .. When canonical variates are plotted, neither sample ties in with Cro-Magnon as was once suggested. The data treated here support the idea that the Neolithic moved out of the Near East into the circum-Mediterranean areas and Europe by a process of demic diffusion but that subsequently the in situ residents of those areas, derived from the Late Pleistocene inhabitants, absorbed both the agricultural life way and the people who had brought it." (Brace, 2005)

Both skeletal/cranial and DNA studies by other authors confirm that some Neolithics did not derive from the Near East. They most likely resembled African populations. Hence comparisons using older European Neolithics versus Africans are comparisons with older prehistoric Europeans who looked more like Africans, than modern 'white' Europeans, as shown by Brace (2005), and Hanihara (1996) also, who states "Early West Asians looked like Africans."

"The absence of mtDNA haplogroup J in the ancient Portuguese Neolithic sample suggests that this population was not derived directly from Near Eastern farmers. The Mesolithic and Neolithic groups show genetic discontinuity implying colonisation at the Neolithic transition in Portugal." (CHANDLER, H.; SYKES, B.; ZILHÃO, J. (2005) — Using ancient DNA to examine genetic continuity at the Mesolithic-Neolithic transition in Portugal, in ARIAS, P.; ONTAÑÓN, R.; GARCÍA-MONCÓ, C. (eds.) — «Actas del III Congreso del Neolítico en la Península Ibérica», Santander, Monografías del Instituto Internacional de Investigaciones Prehistóricas de Cantabria 1, p. 781-786.)

Early Europeans still resembled modern tropical peoples - some resemble modern Australian and Africans, more than modern Europeans.. Nor does the picture get any clearer when we move on to the Cro-Magnons, the presumed ancestors of modern Europeans. Some were more like present-day Australians or Africans, judged by objective anatomical observations." (Christopher Stringer, Robin McKie (1998). African Exodus. Macmillan, p. 162)

Early Europeans, as recently as 6,000-9000 years ago, looked somewhat like Africans in terms of retained 'tropical' characteristics. Cold adaptation was to bring about several physical changes over time from the initial Out of Africa migrations to Europe. Retained traces of 'tropical' characteristics, indicate a "large African role in the origins of anatomically modern Europeans." (Holliday and Churchill 2003).

"Body proportions covary with climate, apparently as the result of climatic selection. Ontogenetic research and migrant studies have demonstrated that body proportions are largely genetically controlled and are under low selective rates; thus studies of body form can provide evidence for evolutionarily short-term dispersals and/or gene flow. Replacement predicts that the earliest modern Europeans will possess “tropical” body proportions (assuming Africa is the center of origin), while Regional Continuity permits only minor shifts in body shape, due to climatic change and/or improved cultural buffering. .. results refute the hypothesis of local continuity in Europe, and are consistent with an interpretation of elevated gene flow (and population dispersal?) from Africa, followed by subsequent climatic adaptation to colder conditions." (Holliday, Trenton (1997) Body proportions in Late Pleistocene Europe and modern human origins. Journal of Human Evolution, Volume 32, Issue 5, 1997, Pages 423-447)

".. while the Late Upper Paleolithic and Mesolithic humans have significantly higher (i.e., tropically-adapted) brachial and crural indices than do recent Europeans, they also have shorter (i.e., cold-adapted) limbs. The somewhat paradoxical retention of “tropical” indices in the context of more “cold-adapted” limb length is best explained as evidence for Replacement in the European Late Pleistocene, followed by gradual cold adaptation in glacial Europe." (Holliday, Trenton (1999) Brachial and crural indices of European Late Upper Paleolithic and Mesolithic humans. Journal of Human Evolution. Volume 36, Issue 5, May 1999, Pages 549-566)

"Stature, body mass, and body proportions are evaluated for the Cheddar Man (Gough's Cave 1) skeleton. Like many of his Mesolithic contemporaries, Gough's Cave 1 evinces relatively short estimated stature (ca. 166.2 cm [5' 5']) and low body mass (ca. 66 kg [146 lbs]). In body shape, he is similar to recent Europeans for most proportional indices. He differs, however, from most recent Europeans in his high crural index and tibial length/trunk height indices. Thus, while Gough's Cave 1 is characterized by a total morphological pattern considered ‘cold-adapted’, these latter two traits may be interpreted as evidence of a large African role in the origins of anatomically modern Europeans." (TRENTON W. HOLLIDAY a1 and STEVEN E. CHURCHILL. (2003). Gough's Cave 1 (Somerset, England): an assessment of body size and shape, Bulletin of the Natural History Museum: Geology, 58:37-44 Cambridge University Press)

Older studies often show misclassification or exclusion of Nile Valley remains deemed 'negroid'. Although clearly of the "African" type, such remains were frequently relabeled "Mediterranean."

"Analyses of Egyptian crania are numerous. Vercoutter (1978) notes that ancient Egyptian crania have frequently all been lumped (implicitly or explicitly) as Mediterranean, although Negroid remains are recorded in substantial numbers by many workers... "Nutter (1958), using the Penrose statistic, demonstrated that Nagada I and Badari crania, both regarded as Negroid, were almost identical and that these were most similar to the Negroid Nubian series from Kerma studied by Collett (1933). [Collett, not accepting variability, excluded "clear negro" crania found in the Kerma series from her analysis, as did Morant (1925), implying that they were foreign..." (S. Keita (1990) Studies of Ancient Crania From Northern Africa. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY 83:35-48)

Different features among Africans, particularly EAST AFRICANS, like narrow noses are not due to different "race" mixes but are part of the built-in physical diversity and variation of African peoples. Narrow noses appear in the oldest African populations for example, in Kenya's Gamble Cave complex. East Africans like Somalians or Kenyans do not need any outside race "mix" or migration to make them look the way they do.

".. all their features can be found in several living populations of East Africa, like the Tutsi of Rwanda and Burundi, who are very dark skinned and differ greatly from Europeans in a number of body proportions.. There is every reason to believe that they are ancestral to the living 'Elongated East Africans'. Neither of these populations, fossil and modern, should be considered to be closely related to the populations of Europe and western Asia.. In skin colour, the Tutsi are darker than the Hutu, in the reverse direction to that leading to the caucasoids. Lip thickness provides a similar case: on an average the lips of the Tutsi are thicker than those of the Hutu." [Jean Hiernaux, The People of Africa (1975), pgs 42-43, 62-63)

"Prehistoric human crania from Bromhead's Site, Willey's Kopje, Makalia Burial Site, Nakuru, and other localities in the Eastern Rift Valley of Kenya are reassessed using measurements and a multivariate statistical approach. Materials available for comparison include series of Bushman and Hottentot crania. South and East African Negroes, and Egyptians. Up to 34 cranial measurements taken on these series are utilized to construct three multiple discriminant frameworks, each of which can assign modern individuals to a correct group with considerable accuracy. When the prehistoric crania are classified with the help of these discriminants, results indicate that several of the skulls are best grouped with modern Negroes. This is especially clear in the case of individuals from Bromhead's Site, Willey's Kopje, and Nakuru, and the evidence hardly suggests post-Pleistocene domination of the Rift and surrounding territory by "Mediterranean" Caucasoids, as has been claimed. Recent linguistic and archaeological findings are also reviewed, and these seem to support application of the term Nilotic Negro to the early Rift populations." (Rightmire GP. New studies of post-Pleistocene human skeletal remains from the Rift Valley, Kenya. Am J Phys Anthropol. 1975 May;42(3):351-69. )

"....inhabitants of East Africa right on the equator have appreciably longer, narrower, and higher noses than people in the Congo at the same latitude. A former generation of anthropologists used to explain this paradox by invoking an invasion by an itinerant "white" population from the Mediterranean area, although this solution raised more problems than it solved since the East Africans in question include some of the blackest people in the world with characteristically wooly hair and a body build unique among the world's populations for its extreme linearity and height.... The relatively long noses of East Africa become explicable then when one realizes that much of the area is extremely dry for parts of the year." (C. Loring Brace, "Nonracial Approach Towards Human Diversity," cited in The Concept of Race, Edited by Ashley Montagu, The Free Press, 1980, pp. 135-136, 138)

"The .... excavations at Gogoshiis Qabe (Somalia) uncovered eleven virtually complete and articulated primary burials...Closest morphological affinities are with early Holocene skeletons from Lake Turkana, Kenya...and Lake Besaka, Ethiopia.."
(S. Brandt, (1986) The Upper Pleistocene and early Holocene prehistory of the Horn of Africa. Journal African Archaeological Review. Volume 4, Number 1, Pages 41-82 )

"The role of tall, linearly built populations in eastern Africa's prehistory has always been debated. Traditionally, they are viewed as late migrants into the area. But as there is better palaeoanthropological and linguistic documentation for the earlier presence of these populations than for any other group in eastern Africa, it is far more likely that they are indigenous eastern Africans. ... prehistoric linear populations show resemblances to both Upper Pleistocene eastern African fossils and present-day, non-Bantu-speaking groups in eastern Africa, with minor differences stemming from changes in overall robusticity of the dentition and skeleton. This suggests a longstanding tradition of linear populations in eastern Africa, contributing to the indigenous development of cultural and biological diversity from the Pleistocene up to the present."
(L . A . SCHEPARTZ, "Who were the later Pleistocene eastern Africans?" The African Archaeological Review, 6 (1988), pp. 57- 72)

Recent study shows ancient Egyptians physically more like tropically adapted Black Americans than White Americans, confirming older studies that show the ancients closer to US blacks than Northern Europeans, and Southern Europeans as well.

"We also compare Egyptian body proportions to those of modern American Blacks and Whites... Long bone stature regression equations were then derived for each sex. Our results confirm that, although ancient Egyptians are closer in body proportion to modern American Blacks than they are to American Whites, proportions in Blacks and Egyptians are not identical... Intralimb indices are not significantly different between Egyptians and American Blacks. ..brachial indices are definitely more ‘African’... There is no evidence for significant variation in proportions among temporal or social groupings; thus, the new formulae may be broadly applicable to ancient Egyptian remains." ("Stature estimation in ancient Egyptians: A new technique based on anatomical reconstruction of stature." Michelle H. Raxter, Christopher B. Ruff, Ayman Azab, Moushira Erfan, Muhammad Soliman, Aly El-Sawaf, (Am J Phys Anthropol. 2008, Jun;136(2):147-55

Africa is the most genetically diverse region in the world with the original man being from East Africa according to conservative scholars:

"Africa contains tremendous cultural, linguistic and genetic diversity, and has more than 2,000 distinct ethnic groups and languages.. Studies using mitochondrial (mt)DNA and nuclear DNA markers consistently indicate that Africa is the most genetically diverse region of the world." (Tishkoff SA, Williams SM., Genetic analysis of African populations: human evolution and complex disease. Nature Reviews Genetics. 2002 Aug (8):611-21.)

" In other words, all non-Africans carry M168. Of course, Africans carrying the M168 mutation today are the descendants of the African subpopulation from which the migrants originated.... Thus, the Australian/Eurasian Adam (the ancestor of all non-Africans) was an East African Man." (Linda Stone, Paul F. Lurquin, L. Luca Cavalli-Sforza, Genes, Culture, and Human Evolution: A Synthesis, Wiley-Blackwell: 2006, pg 108)

The Natufians, early inhabitants of the Sinai - Israel- Palestine area, and reputed pioneers of several Neolithic agricultural and technological developments, appear to have had "Negroid" affinities. Important Natufian sites include Mt. Carmel, Jericho and several others.

"Against this background of disease, movement and pedomorphic reduction of body size one can identify Negroid (Ethiopic or Bushmanoid?) traits of nose and prognathism appearing in Natufian latest hunters (McCown, 1939) and in Anatolian and Macedonian first farmers, probably from Nubia via the unknown predecesors of the Badarians and Tasians....". (Biological Relations of Egyptians and Eastern Mediterranean Populations during pre-Dynastic and Dynastic Times. J. Lawrence Angel. Journal of Human Evolutiom. 1972:1, 1, Pg 307)

"The Mushabians moved into Sinai from the Nile Delta, bringing North African lithic chipping tecniques."
("Pleistocene connections between Africa and Southwest Asia: an archaeological perspective. O. Bar-Yosef. African Archaeological Review. 5 (1987) Pg 29)

"It is a further surprise that the Epipalaeolithic Natufian of Israel from whom the Neolithic realm was assumed to arise has a clear link to Sub-Saharan Africa... Interestingly enough, however, the small Natufian sample falls between the Niger-Congo group and the other samples used... This placement suggests that there may have been a Sub-Saharan African element in the make-up of the Natufians (the putative ancestors of the subsequent Neolithic.." (C.L Brace, et. al. 2005. The Questionable contribution of the Neolithic...)

Early inhabitants of the general Natufian Israel area show limb proportions suited to tropical peoples- similar to sub-Saharan's homeland

"However, the real revelation came when Erik [Trinkhaus] inserted his data on the Cro-Magnons of Europe and the Skhul-Qafzeh skeletons from Israel into the equations. In this case, he got a figure of 85 percent for the shinbone-thighbone ratio. Not only were they unlike the Neanderthals, but these people actually fell at the other extreme in their readings on the limb thermometer. The predicted average temperature of origin for folk with an 85% shin-thigh fraction, indicating much longer extremities relative to trunk length — was about 20 degrees higher than the Neanderthals', suggesting a subtropical- if not tropical- homeland!" (African Exodus By Christopher Stringer, Robin McKie, McMillan: pg 79-83)

The 1993 'Clines and Clusters' study by C.L. Brace, et. al. has been used to minmize or downplay the realtionship between Egypt and its African neighbors. For example it:

Created an "African" or "sub-Saharan" group, but excluded the Maghreb (including parts of the Sahara and Sahel), the Sudan and the Horn area (Ethiopia and Somalia) even though these latter two are BELOW the Sahara, and thus "sub-Saharan".

Excluded the Badari, and Naqada I and II, key Egyptian groups, thus obscuring the Sudanic/Saharan character of numerous early samples, noted in several earlier analyses.

Ignored the formative range of the Saharans on Egypt, from the megaliths and cattle cults of the Nabta Playa to early mummification practices was ignored.

Excluded the Nubian population of the Badari and early Naqada period, including the rich remains of the well documented Qustul culture, near the present Sudanese-Egyptian border, again obscuring the close relationship between the two peoples.

Created a vague "Bronze Age" grouping of Nubians, and a "modern" group of medieval samples, an era long after the dynasties and when Nubia had experienced more gene flow of that and the later Arab incursions, beginning in the 700s. Sampling thus ignored the early Badari/Naqada Nubians, jumped the 25th Dynasty era, and shifted to the medieval era in the age range of the Arab conquests.

Used Somalian samples that were relatively recent, and thus within the range of recent gene flow (such as the Arab era), particularly on the coast.

The result was a "comparison" finding that the ancient Egyptians had no relationship "at all" to other "sub-Saharan" peoples and were relatively distant from the Nubians and Somalians. peoples. This finding has been undermined by the subsequent research of several scholars, including limb proportion studies.


"However, Brace et al. (1993) find that a series of upper Egyptian/Nubian epipalaeolithic crania affiliate by cluster analysis with groups they designate “sub-Saharan African” or just simply “African” (from which they incorrectly exclude the Maghreb, Sudan, and the Horn of Africa), whereas post-Badarian southern predynastic and a late dynastic northern series (called “E” or Gizeh) cluster together, and secondarily with Europeans. In the primary cluster with the Egyptian groups are also remains representing populations from the ancient Sudan and recent Somalia. Brace et al. (1993) seemingly interpret these results as indicating a population relationship from Scandinavia to the Horn of Africa, although the mechanism for this is not clearly stated; they also state that the Egyptians had no relationship with sub-Saharan Africans, a group that they nearly treat (incorrectly) as monolithic, although sometimes seemingly including Somalia, which directly undermines aspects of their claims. Sub-Saharan Africa does not define/delimit authentic Africanity." (S.O.Y. Keita. "Early Nile Valley Farmers from El-Badari: Aboriginals or "European" Agro-Nostratic Immigrants? Craniometric Affinities Considered With Other Data". Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 36 No. 2, pp. 191-208 (2005)

Brace carefully excluded the Badari- a key native pre-dynastic group that led into the dynasties, and suggested possible European immigration to ancient Egypt. Keita put this to the test and found that the excluded group matched up more closely with Africans than Europeans.

"An examination of the distance hierarchies reveals the Badarian series to be more similar to the Teita in both analyses and always more similar to all of the African series than to the Norse and Berg groups (see Tables 3A & 3B and Figure 2). Essentially equal similarity is found with the Zalavar and Dogon series in the 11-variable analysis and with these and the Bushman in the one using 15 variables. The Badarian series clusters with the tropical African groups no matter which algorithm is employed (see Figures 3 and 4).. In none of them did the Badarian sample affiliate with the European series."(S.O.Y. Keita. Early Nile Valley Farmers from El-Badari: Aboriginals or "European" Agro-Nostratic Immigrants? Craniometric Affinities Considered With Other Data. Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 36 No. 2, pp. 191-208 (2005)

More on the 'true negro'

"Another example of the use of a socially constructed typological paradigm is in studies of the Nile Valley populations in which the concept of a biological African is restricted to those with a particular craniometric pattern (called in the past the 'True Negro' though no 'True White' was ever defined). Early Nubians, Egyptians, and even Somalians are viewed essentially as non-Africans, when in fact numerous lines of evidence and an evolutionary model make them a part of African biocultural/biogeographical history. The diversity of 'authentic' Africans is a reality. This diversity prevents biogeographical/biohistorical Africans from clustering into a single unit, no matter the kind of data." (The Persistence of Racial Thinking and the Myth of Racial Divergence, S. O. Y. Keita, Rick A. Kittles, American Anthropologist, New Series, Vol. 99, No. 3 (Sep., 1997), pp. 534-544)

"..presents all tropical Africans with narrower noses and faces as being related to or descended from external, ultimately non-African peoples. However, narrow-faced, narrow-nosed populations have long been resident in Saharo-tropical Africa... and their origin need not be sought elsewhere. These traits are also indigenous. The variability in tropical Africa is expectedly naturally high. Given their longstanding presence, narrow noses and faces cannot be deemed `non-African."(S.O.Y. Keita, "Studies and Comments on Ancient Egyptian Biological Relationships," History in Africa 20 (1993), page 134 )

Hair and the 'true negro'

"Strouhal (1971) microscopically examined some hair which had been preserved on a Badrarian skull. The analysis was interpreted as suggesting a stereotypical tropical African-European hybrid (mulatto). However this hair is grossly no different from that of Fulani, some Kanuri, or Somali and does not require a gene flow explanation any more than curly hair in Greece necessarily does. Extremely "wooly" hair is not the only kind native to tropical Africa.." (S. O. Y. Keita. (1993). "Studies and Comments on Ancient Egyptian Biological Relationships," History in Africa 20 (1993) 129-54)

Sampling bias and the true negro. In some Nile Valley research sampling bias persists such as drawing samples from the far north of Egypt, boscuring the region's genetic complexity. The stereotypical "true negro" type is still used to artifically separate related peoples and obscure a fuller, more accurate picture of African genetic diversity. Sampling bias appears both in DNA studies (noted by Keita) and in cranial studies (noted by Egyptologist Barry Kemp).


Keita on DNA studies drawing samples from the far north, an area with more foreign settlement and gene flow

"However, in some of the studies, only individuals from northern Egypt are sampled, and this could theoretically give a false impression of Egyptian variability (contrast Lucotte and Mercier 2003a with Manni et al. 2002), because this region has received more foreign settlers (and is nearer the Near East). Possible sample bias should be integrated into the discussion of results." (S.O.Y. Keita, A.J. Boyce, "Interpreting Geographical Patterns of Y Chromosome Variation1," History in Africa 32 (2005) 221-246 )

Egyptologist Barry Kemp on the worldwide CRANID database that used northern samples near the Mediterranean as "representative" of the ancient Egyptians, and classifying them in a "European" direction, while excluding key historic sites further south..

"If, on the other hand, CRANID had used one of the Elephantine populations of the same period, the geographic association would be much more with the African groups to the south. It is dangerous to take one set of skeletons and use them to characterize the population of the whole of Egypt." (Barry Kemp, Ancient Egypt Anatomy of a Civilisation, Routledge: 2005, p. 55)

Modern anthropology shows that the ancient Egyptians are well within the range of tropical Africa, contradicting older research in the 1990s that sought to deny any relationship.

"There is now a sufficient body of evidence from modern studies of skeletal remains to indicate that the ancient Egyptians, especially southern Egyptians, exhibited physical characteristics that are within the range of variation for ancient and modern indigenous peoples of the Sahara and tropical Africa.. In general, the inhabitants of Upper Egypt and Nubia had the greatest biological affinity to people of the Sahara and more southerly areas." (Nancy C. Lovell, " Egyptians, physical anthropology of," in Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt, ed. Kathryn A. Bard and Steven Blake Shubert, ( London and New York: Routledge, 1999) pp 328-332)

One of the oldest remains from Upper Egypt, shows strong sub-Saharan affinities, and early northern Egypt also shows sub-Saharan affinities through cultural traits- the 'Nubian complex' of technology and production.

"The morphometric affinities of the 33,000 year old skeleton from Nazlet Khater, Upper Egypt are examined using multivariate statistical procedures.. The results indicate a strong association between some of the sub-Saharan Middle Stone Age (MSA) specimens, and the Nazlet Khater mandible. Furthermore, the results suggest that variability between African populations during the Neolithic and Protohistoric periods was more pronounced than the range of variability observed among recent African and Levantine populations." (PINHASI Ron, SEMAL Patrick (2000). The position of the Nazlet Khater specimen among prehistoric and modern African and Levantine populations. Journal of human evolution. 2000, vol. 39, no3, pp. 269-288 )

"..Middle Paleolithic and the transition to the Upper Paleolithic in the Lower Nile Valley are described... the Middle Paleolithic or, more appropriately, Middle Stone Age of this region starts with the arrival of new populations from sub-Saharan Africa, as evidenced by the nature of the Early to Middle Stone Age transition in stratified sites. Throughout the late Middle Pleistocene technological change occurs leading to the establishment of the Nubian Complex by the onset of the Upper Pleistocene." (Van Peer, Philip. Did middle stone age moderns of sub-Saharan African descent trigger an upper paleolithic revolution in the lower nile valley? Anthropologie. vol. 42, no3, pp. 215-225)

Dental studies provide evidence that the ancient Egyptian population maintained a high degree of continuity into the early, mid and late Dynastic periods. A key ancient group, the Badari, found to link to tropical African metrics, was excluded by such studies as Brace (1993) but dental research shows they link well with later pre and Dynastic populations. J. Irish's 2006 dental study examined the ancient Badarian people excluded by Brace and found that they were a "good representative of what the common ancestor to all later predynastic and dynastic Egyptian peoples would be like." His dental results show that:


"Despite the difference, Gebel Ramlah [the Western Desert- Saharan region] is closest to predynastic and early dynastic samples from Abydos, Hierakonpolis, and Badari.."

the Badarians were a "good representative of what the common ancestor to all later predynastic and dynastic Egyptian peoples would be like"

"A comparison of Badari to the Naqada and Hierakonpolis samples .. contradicts the idea of a foreign origin for the Naqada (Petrie, 1939; Baumgartel, 1970)"

Evidence in favor of continuity is also demonstrated by comparison of individual samples. "Naqada and especially Hierakonpolis share close affinities with First–Second Dynasty Abydos.. These findings do not support the concept of a foreign dynastic ‘‘race’’"

"Thus, despite increasing foreign influence after the Second Intermediate Period, not only did Egyptian culture remain intact (Lloyd, 2000a), but the people themselves, as represented by the dental samples, appear biologically constant as well."

(Joel D. Irish (2006). Who Were the Ancient Egyptians? Dental Affinities Among Neolithic Through Postdynastic Peoples. Am J Phys Anthropol. 2006 Apr;129(4):529-43.)

Africans have the highest dental diversity
"Previous research by the first author revealed that, relative to other modern peoples, sub-Saharan Africans exhibit the highest frequencies of ancestral (or plesiomorphic) dental traits... The fact that sub-Saharan Africans express these apparently plesiomorphic characters, along with additional information on their affinity to other modern populations, evident intra-population heterogeneity, and a world-wide dental cline emanating from the sub-continent, provides further evidence that is consistent with an African origin model." (Irish JD, Guatelli-Steinberg D.(2003) Ancient teeth and modern human origins: an expanded comparison of African Plio-Pleistocene and recent world dental samples. Hum Evol. 2003 Aug;45(2):113-44. )

Ancient Egyptian civilization was indigenous with continuity among its peoples, not an influx of Middle Easterners, Europeans or other outsiders like Arabs until relatively late in history

"Some have argued that various early Egyptians like the Badarians probably migrated northward from Nubia, while others see a wide-ranging movement of peoples across the breadth of the Sahara before the onset of desiccation. Whatever may be the origins of any particular people or civilization, however, it seems reasonably certain that the predynastic communities of the Nile valley were essentially indigenous in culture, drawing little inspiration from sources outside the continent during the several centuries directly preceding the onset of historical times..." (Robert July, Pre-Colonial Africa, 1975, p. 60-61)

"overall population continuity over the Predynastic and early Dynastic, and high levels of genetic heterogeneity, thereby suggesting that state formation occurred as a mainly indigenous process."
(Zakrzewski, S.R. (2007). "Population continuity or population change: Formation of the ancient Egyptian state". American Journal of Physical Anthropology 132 (4): 501-509)

"the peoples of the steppes and grasslands to the immediate south of Egypt domesticated cattle, as early as 9000 to 8000 B.C. They included peoples from the Afroasiastic linguistic group and the second major African language family, Nilo-Saharan (Wendorf, Schild, Close 1984; Wendorf, et al. 1982). Thus the earliest domestic cattle may have come to Egypt from these southern neighbors, circa 6000 B.C., and not from the Middle East.[148] Pottery, another significant advance in material cultural may also have followed this pattern, initiatied "as early as 9000 B.C. by the Nilo-Saharans and Afrasians who lived to the south of Egypt. Soon thereafter, pots spread to Egyptian sites, almost 2,000 years before the first pottery was made in the Middle East."
(Christopher Ehret, "Ancient Egyptian as an African Language, Egypt as an African Culture," in Egypt in Africa, Theodore Celenko (ed), Indiana University Press, 1996, pp. 25-27)

X-ray Atlas of the Royal Mummies show some to be linked physically to Nubian types, and some documented royal officials are clearly "Negroid' like Pepi-seneb, an eminent scribe c. 2745 BC. Some royal New Kingdom mummies also show melanin frequencies consistent with Negroid origin.

"In terms of head shape, the XVIV and XX dynasties look more like the early Nubian skulls from the mesolithic with low vaults and sloping, curved foreheads.The XVII and XVIII dynasty skulls are shaped more like modern Nubians with globular skulls and high vaults."
(An X-ray atlas of the royal mummies. Edited by J.E. Harris and E.F. Wente. (The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1980.) Review: Michael R. Zimmerman, American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Volume 56, Issue 2 , (1981) Pages 207 - 208)

"While the Upper Nile Egyptians show phenotypic features that occur in higher frequencies in the Sudan and southward into East Africa (namely, facial prognathism, chamaerrhiny, and paedomorphic cranial architecture with specific modifications of the nasal aperature), these so-called Negroid features are not universal in the region of Thebes, Karnak, and Luxor."
(Kennedy, Kenneth A.R., T. Plummer, J. Chinment, "Identification of the Eminent Dead: Pepi, A Scribe of Egypt," In Katherine J. Reichs (ed.), Forensic Osteology, 1986.)

German Institute for Archaeology -excavation of the tombs of the nobles in Thebes-West, Upper Egypt. In several of the noble specimens:
"The basal epithelial cells were packed with melanin as expected for specimens of Negroid origin."
(Determination of optimal rehydration, fixation and staining methods for histological and immunohistochemical analysis of mummified soft tissues", Biotechnic & Histochemistry 2005, 80(1): 7_/13)

Ancient Egyptian religion closer to the religion of African regions than to Mesopotamia, Europe or the Middle East

Encyclopedia Britannica 1984 ed. Macropedia Article, Vol 6: "Egyptian Religion" , pg 506-508
"A large number of gods go back to prehistoric times. The images of a cow and star goddess (Hathor), the falcon (Horus), and the human-shaped figures of the fertility god (Min) can be traced back to that period. Some rites, such as the "running of the Apil-bull," the "hoeing of the ground," and other fertility and hunting rites (e.g., the hippopotamus hunt) presumably date from early times.. Connections with the religions in southwest Asia cannot be traced with certainty."
"It is doubtful whether Osiris can be regarded as equal to Tammuz or Adonis, or whether Hathor is related to the "Great Mother." There are closer relations with northeast African religions. The numerous animal cults (especially bovine cults and panther gods) and details of ritual dresses (animal tails, masks, grass aprons, etc) probably are of African origin. The kinship in particular shows some African elements, such as the king as the head ritualist (i.e., medicine man), the limitations and renewal of the reign (jubilees, regicide), and the position of the king's mother (a matriarchal element). Some of them can be found among the Ethiopians in Napata and Meroe, others among the Prenilotic tribes (Shilluk)."
(Encyclopedia Britannica 1984 ed. Macropedia Article, Vol 6: "Egyptian Religion" , pg 506-508)

Egyptian dynastic civilization based from the 'darker' south (Upper Egypt) not the north (Lower Egypt)

"While not attempting to underestimate the contribution that Deltaic political and religious institutions made to those of a united Egypt, many Egyptologists now discount the idea that a united prehistoric kingdom of Lower Egypt ever existed."

"While communities such as Ma'adi appear to have played an important role in entrepots through which goods and ideas form south-west Asia filtered into the Nile Valley in later prehistoric times, the main cultural and political tradition that gave rise to the cultural pattern of Early Dynastic Egypt is to be found not in the north but in the south.":
The Cambridge History of Africa: Volume 1, From the Earliest Times to c. 500 BC, (Cambridge University Press: 1982), Edited by J. Desmond Clark pp. 500-509

"..the early cultures of Merimde, the Fayum, Badari Naqada I and II are essentially African and early African social customs and religious beliefs were the root and foundation of the ancient Egyptian way of life." (Source: Shaw, Thurston (1976) Changes in African Archaeology in the Last Forty Years in African Studies since 1945. p. 156-68. London.)

Much older scholarship shows cultural similarities between ancient Egypt and the rest of Africa, contradicting claims of Middle Eastern inspiration.

Specific central African tool designs found at the well known Naqada, Badari and Fayum archaeological sites in Egypt (de Heinzelin 1962, Arkell and Ucko, 1956 et al).

Shaw (1976) states that "the early cultures of Merimde, the Fayum, Badari Naqada I and II are essentially African and early African social customs and religious beliefs were the root and foundation of the ancient Egyptian way of life."

Pottery evidence first seen in the Saharan Highlands then spreading to the Nile Valley (Flight 1973).

Art motifs of Saharan rock paintings showing similarities to those in pharaonic art. A number of scholars suggest that these earlier artistic styles influenced later pharaonic art via Saharans leaving drier areas and moving into the Nile Valley taking their art styles with them (Mori 1964, Blanc 1964, et al)

Earlier pioneering mummification in the Sahara. The oldest mummy in Africa is of a black Saharan child (Donadoni 1964, Blanc 1964) Frankfort (1956) suggests that it is thus possible to understand the pharaonic worldview by reference to the religious beliefs of these earlier African precursors. Attempts to suggest the root of such practices are due to Caucasoid civilizers from elsewhere are thus contradicted by the data on the ground.

Several cultural practices of Egypt show strong similarities to an African totemic clan base. Childe (1969, 1978), Aldred (1978) and Strouhal (1971) demonstrate linkages with several African practices such as divine kingship and the king as divine rainmaker.

Physical similarities of the early Nile valley populations with that of tropical Africans. Such connections are demonstrated in the work of numerous scholars such as Thompson and Randall Mclver 1905, Falkenburger 1947, and Strouhal 1971. The distance diagrams of Mukherjee, Rao and Trevor (1955) place the ancient Badarians genetically near 'black' tribes such as the Ashanti and the Taita. See also the "Issues of lumping under Mediterranean clusters" section above for similar older analyses.

Serological (blood) evidence of genetic linkages. Paoli 1972 for example found a significant resemblance between ABO frequencies of dynastic Egyptians and the black northern Haratin who are held to be the probable descendants of the original Saharans (Hiernaux, 1975).

Language similarities which include several hundred roots ascribable to African elements (UNESCO 1974)

Ancient Egyptian origin stories ascribing origins of the gods and their ancestors to African locations to the south and west of Egypt (Davidson 1959)
Advanced state building and political unity in Nubia, including writing, administrative apparatus and insignia some 300 years before dynastic Egypt, and the long demonstrated interchange between Nubia and Egypt (Williams 1980)

Newer studies (Wendorf 2001, Wilkinson 1999, et al.) confirm these older analyses. Excavations from Nabta Playa, located about 100km west of Abu Simbel for example, suggest that the Neolithic inhabitants of the region were migrants from Sub-Saharan Africa, based on cultural similarities and social complexity which is thought to be reflective of Egypt's Old Kingdom

Other recent scholars present similar material and cultural evidence- including similarities between predynastic Egypt and traditional African cattle-culture, typical of Southern Sudanese and East African pastoralists of today, and various cultural and artistic data such as iconography on rock art found in both Egypt and in the Sudan. (Wilkinson 1999)

Assorted demic diffusion theories holding a mass influx of Europeans or Middle Easterners to Africa bringing cattle and agriculture to the natives is not supported by credible evidence. Indigenous development is most likely.

"Furthermore, the archaeology of northern Africa DOES NOT SUPPORT demic diffusion of farming from the Near East. The evidence presented by Wetterstrom indicates that early African farmers in the Fayum initially INCORPORATED Near Eastern domesticates INTO an INDIGENOUS foraging strategy, and only OVER TIME developed a dependence on horticulture. This is inconsistent with in-migrating farming settlers, who would have brought a more ABRUPT change in subsistence strategy. "The same archaeological pattern occurs west of Egypt, where domestic animals and, later, grains were GRADUALLY adopted after 8000 yr B.P. into the established pre-agricultural Capsian culture, present across the northern Sahara since 10,000 yr B.P. From this continuity, it has been argued that the pre-food-production Capsian peoples spoke languages ancestral to the Berber and/or Chadic branches of Afroasiatic, placing the proto-Afroasiatic period distinctly before 10,000 yr B.P."

Source: The Origins of Afroasiatic. Christopher Ehret, S. O. Y. Keita, Paul Newman;, and Peter Bellwood. Science 3 December 2004: Vol. 306. no. 5702, p. 1680

Early Nile Valley Farmers From El-Badari show clear link with tropical Africans not supposedly inflowing Scandanavians

Male Badarian crania were analyzed using the generalized distance of Mahalanobis in a comparative analysis with other African and European series from the Howells?s database. The study was carried out to examine the affinities of the Badarians to evaluate, in preliminary fashion, a demic diffusion hypothesis that postulates that horticulture and the Afroasiatic language family were brought ultimately from southern Europe. (The assumption was made that the southern Europeans would be more similar to the central and northern Europeans than to any indigenous African populations.) The Badarians show a greater affinity to indigenous Africans while not being identical. This suggests that the Badarians were more affiliated with local and an indigenous African population than with Europeans.
(S.O.Y. Keita. "Early Nile Valley Farmers from El-Badari: Aboriginals or "European" Agro-Nostratic Immigrants? Craniometric Affinities Considered With Other Data". Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 36 No. 2, pp. 191-208 (2005)

The Sahara and the Sudan seem to have provided the major source for the genesis of Egyptian civilization contributing many of its unique elements.

"a critical factor in the rise of social complexity and the subsequent emergence of the Egyptian state in Upper Egypt (Hoffman 1979; Hassan 1988). If so, Egypt owes a major debt to those early pastoral groups in the Sahara; they may have provided Egypt with many of those features that still distinguish it from its neighbors to the east."
Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 17, 97-123 (1998), "Nabta Playa and Its Role in Northeastern African Prehistory," Fred Wendorf and Romuald Schild.

"Over the last two decades, numerous contemporary (Khartoum Neolithic) sites and cemeteries have been excavated in the Central Sudan.. The most striking point to emerge is the overall similarity of early neolithic developments inhabitation, exchange, material culture and mortuary customs in the Khartoum region to those underway at the same time in the Egyptian Nile Valley, far to the north." (Wengrow, David (2003) "Landscapes of Knowledge, Idioms of Power: The African Foundations of Ancient Egyptian Civilization Reconsidered," in Ancient Egypt in Africa, David O'Connor and Andrew Reid, eds. Ancient Egypt in Africa. London: University College London Press, 2003, pp. 119-137)

Ancient Egyptian language is part of the Afrasian or Afroasiatic group which has its origins in Africa, and together with other archaeological evidence firmly makes it an African culture. Acording to mainstream research:


"Ancient Egyptian civilization was, in ways and to an extent usually not recognized, fundamentally African. The evidence of both language and culture reveals these African roots. The origins of Egyptian ethnicity lay in the areas south of Egypt. The ancient Egyptian language belonged to the Afrasian family (also called Afroasiatic or, formerly, Hamito-Semitic). The speakers of the earliest Afrasian languages, according to recent studies, were a set of peoples whose lands between 15,000 and 13,000 B.C. stretched from Nubia in the west to far northern Somalia in the east. They supported themselves by gathering wild grains. The first elements of Egyptian culture were laid down two thousand years later, between 12,000 and 10,000 B.C., when some of these Afrasian communities expanded northward into Egypt, bringing with them a language directly ancestral to ancient Egyptian. They also introduced to Egypt the idea of using wild grains as food." (Christopher Ehret (1996) "Ancient Egyptian as an African Language, Egypt as an African Culture." In Egypt in Africa Egypt in Africa, Theodore Celenko (ed), Indiana University Press)

"Ancient Egypt belongs to a language group known as 'Afroasiatic' (formerly called Hamito-Semitic) and its closest relatives are other north-east African languages from Somalia to Chad. Egypt's cultural features, both material and ideological and particularly in the earliest phases, show clear connections with that same broad area. In sum, ancient Egypt was an African culture, developed by African peoples, who had wide ranging contacts in north Africa and western Asia." (Morkot, Robert (2005) The Egyptians: An Introduction. Routledge. p. 10)

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