Jews with Haplogroup G

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There are significant numbers of Jewish men found within multiple subgroups of haplogroup G (Y-DNA). Haplogroup G is found in significantly different percentages within the various Jewish ethnic divisions, ranging from about a third of Moroccan Jews to almost none reported among the Indian, Yemenite and Iranian communities.[1]

Haplogroup G Subgroups with Jewish Members[edit]

The Jewish clusters of men within haplogroup G subgroups often have distinctive shared oddities of values at certain STR markers but sometimes are recognizable by having close genetic distances when dozens of STR marker values are compared. These Jewish clusters are found within all the major haplogroup G subgroups.[2]

G1a -- A cluster of Ashkenazi Jewish men from northeastern Europe is found in G1a persons who are negative for G1a subgroups. These Jewish men share a value of 16 at STR marker DYS19 and 27 at DYS389b.

G1a1 -- Another cluster of Ashkenazi Jewish men from northeastern Europe is found in G1a1 persons. So far they seem to comprise the only men who are G1a1, and this is the only known grouping of haplogroup G Jews whose grouping is defined by a SNP mutation.

G1c -- A cluster of Ashkenazi Jewish men from northeastern Europe comprises another subgroup, this time within G1c. These Jewish men share an odd value of 12 at STR marker DYS446.

G2a1a -- A cluster of Ashkenazi Jewish men from northeastern Europe is found in G2a1a. Almost all differ from the nonJewish G2a1a men in having two distinctive STR marker values: YCA=21,21 and typically DYS19=16.

G2a3a -- A cluster of mostly Ashkenazi Jewish men from northeastern Europe is found in G2a3a persons negative for the G2a3a subgroup. Some samples from the western Mediterranean exist which may represent conversos. These men have distinctive values for two STR markers: DYS454=12 and DYS392=12.

G2a3b1a -- A number of Ashkenazi Jewish men from northeastern Europe are found within the large number of G2a3b1a men who share the STR marker value of 13 for marker DYS388. These Jewish men lack distinctive STR marker values, but have each other as the nearest matches in comparing STR marker samples.

G2a3b1a -- A number of men who share the unusual STR marker values and are otherwise genetically close to each other. This subgroup includes men who may not have known Jewish roots.

G2a3b1a1 -- A small group of Ashkenazi Jewish men with ancestral origins in northeastern Europe is found in G2a3b1a1. They share a 12 value for slowly mutating STR marker DYS392, a rarity among G2a3b1a1a1 men.

G2a3b1a1a -- A cluster of men whose ancestors were western Mediterranean conversos or had ties to Sephardic Jewish communities is found in G2a3b1a1a. They lack distinctive STR marker values, but have each other as nearest matches in comparing STR marker samples

G2a3b1a3a -- A cluster of Ashkenazi Jewish men from northeastern Europe is found within the large number of G2a3b1a men who share the STR marker value of 9 for marker DYS568. These Jewish men have distinctive low marker values at STR marker DYS385a and a high value at DYS385b when compared with other DYS568=9 men.

G2b -- A high percentage of G2b men from Europe are Ashkenazi Jewish men who are negative for G2b1. These Jewish men have the distinctive feature within G2b of a shared null value for STR marker DYS425. Based on the number of STR marker mutations seen in comparisons, it is likely the common ancestor of all these men lived sometime in the early Middle Ages.

Haplogroup G Found within Jewish Communities[edit]

The following percentages of haplogroup G persons have been found in the various Jewish communities listed in descending order by percentage of G.

population usual origin total N G % N=G notes
Moroccan Jews Morocco 83 19.3% 16 [1]
Sephardim Bulgaria/Turkey 174 16.7% 29 [1]
Mountain Jews Azerbaijan 57 15.8% 9 [1]
Libyan Jews Libya 20 10.0% 2 [3]
Iraqi Jews Iraq 79 10.1% 8 [1]
Ashkenazim Pale of Settlement/Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (NE Europe), Hungary, Czech Republic, Germany, Netherlands 856 7.2% 61 [1]
Bene Israel Konkan, North India 31 6.5% 2 [1]
Georgian Jews Georgia 62 4.8% 3 [1]
Yemenite Jews Yemen 74 6.8% 0 [1]
Persian Jews Iran 49 0% 0 [1]
Bukharan Jews Uzbekistan 15 0% 0 [1]
Cochin Jews Cochin, South India 45 0% 0 [1]
Ethiopian Jews Gondar, Ethiopia 27 0% 0 [1]

Haplogroup G Men Already Present among Jews When Judaism Began?[edit]

One of the basic questions is whether haplogroup G persons were already living in lands occupied by the Jews of the Hebrew Bible -- corresponding mostly to the modern state of Israel -- when distinctly Jewish states first came into existence about 1350 BCE.[4] By this point in time, the major G haplogroup divisions were in existence, but only ancient DNA can today confirm the geographical spread of G then. The presence of haplogroup G to some extent in all populations throughout the Middle East does not rule out the possibility that G persons were living in Jewish lands during the formative years of the religion.

In the pre-Jewish period the Hurrians once controlled Jerusalem through rulers such as Abdi-Heba The Hurrian kingdom at times stretched from today's Syria to the eastern Persian Gulf[citation needed]. Farther back in time in the prehistorical period, movements into the Middle East that may have resulted in population admixture are completely unknown due to the absence of written materials.

Haplogroup G Assimilated into Early Jewish Populations?[edit]

In the time of Joshua about 3400 years ago, Israelites were also described as settling among the Hittites, an ancient Anatolian people—probably the ones inhabiting Mount Lebanon -- and also among the Amorites who were associated with Mesopotamia and intermarrying with persons from both these groups.[5] The Assyrian king, Shalmaneser, during the tenure of Hoshea as King of Israel in the 700s BCE carried the Israelites off to his kingdom and replaced the Israelites who were living in Samaria with persons brought from various Babylonian locales.[6] This event also led to a permanent population of Jews within today's Iran. The presence of the non-Israelites in Samaria could have provided an opportunity for additional population admixture on the return of the Israelites. In the 500s BCE, Israelites were carried into exile in Babylon on more than one occasion. This provided another opportunity to obtain accretions from regional peoples though the sources do not address whether this happened. During the period of the rebuilding of the temple at Jerusalem, persons from various towns in today's Syria and Iraq were among the Babylonian captives returning to Israel who could not show how they were descended from Israelites.[7] Not all the Israelites returned to Israel from Babylonia.

In the 500s BCE at the end of the Babylonian exile, Cyrus allowed additional Jews into Persia. In 135 CE, there was yet another wave of emigration into Persia by Jews fleeing the Roman persecutions. At the time of the original emigrations, Jews intermarried with the local population. The Assyrians also deported Jews to Armenia, and 10,000 Jews moved there on their own.[8]

The omnipresent ancient slave trade provided another opportunity for admixture with Jews because the covenant given to Abraham and his descendants had required that Jewish slaves would be required to undergo circumcision.[9] There is a strong implication that the slaves became Jewish.

Haplogroup G Obtained from Non-Jews during the Diaspora or Medieval Trading?[edit]

In 70 CE, the Romans exiled Jews from the ancient land of their ancestors (the Diaspora) and enslaved many of them. This resulted in the dispersal of Jews throughout the Roman Empire.

During portions of the Early Middle Ages, the hostility between Muslims and Christians provided an opportunity for Jewish Radhanites merchants to set up trade routes and establish new Jewish communities throughout Eurasia. Later restrictions by Christian rulers on occupations Jews could pursue led to specific Jewish involvement in international migrations and trade. Throughout the Middle Ages, expulsions of Jews from some Christian countries led to further dispersals to distant locations. While a number of Jews were forced to convert to other religions, they also received converts into their ranks.

Genetic Findings as to Origins[edit]

There are several findings that are inconsistent with Jews acquiring haplogroup G from populations with which they came in contact. 1. Haplogroup G1 is especially concentrated in today's Iran and its borders,.[10] but the Jews from Iran who were sampled had no haplogroup G of any type present.[1] 2. The Republic of Georgia has a substantial percentage of G in its population,.[11] but the percentage of G among Georgian Jews is modest.[1] 3. In Morocco, there is a substantial amount of G among Jews,[1] but the non-Jews have negligible amounts.[12]

Findings are also available to take the opposite side of the argument. Yemenite Jews have about the same small percentage of haplogroup G as found among the non-Jews,[1] with the division between G1 and G2 similar in both groups.[13] Yemenite Jews are, however, quite different from other Jews and more close to average Yemenis in other haplogroups as well.

The resolution of the question as to which populations originally supplied the haplogroup G can be partly resolved by comparing detailed STR marker samples of Jews and non Jews within the same population. This allows an estimate of time separation because markers mutate at a somewhat predictable rate. The only such comparisons currently available involve Ashkenazi Jews.

Over 50 detailed samples of Ashkenazi G2b Jewish men in the Haplogroup G Project[14] indicate that these Ashkenazis do not share common ancestors with any other G person living in Europe within the Current Era based on the number of marker values that are different. And the type of haplogroup G seen among non-Jews in eastern Europe from where these men originated is rarely G2b. It can be deduced, for this group at least, that they very likely did not share post-Roman era ancestry with the non-Jewish population of eastern Europe.

Famous Jews within Haplogroup G[edit]

Physicist and author.
Leading American film and television actor.
Former Chairman of the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Chairman of the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Doron M. Behar; Bayazit Yunusbayev; Mait Metspalu; Ene Metspalu; Saharon Rosset; Jüri Parik; Siiri Rootsi; Ildus Kutuev; Guennady Yudkovsky; Elza K. Khusnutdinova; Oleg Balanovsky; Olga Balaganskaya; Ornella Semino; Luisa Pereira; David Gurwitz; Batsheva Bonne-Tamir; Tudor Parfitt; Michael F. Hammer; Karl Skorecki; Richard Villems (July 2010). "The genome-wide structure of the Jewish people". Nature 466 (7303): 238–42. doi:10.1038/nature09103. PMID 20531471. 
  2. ^ Haplogroup G Project Categories url=
  3. ^ Shen P, Lavi T, Kivisild T, et al. (September 2004). "Reconstruction of patrilineages and matrilineages of Samaritans and other Israeli populations from Y-chromosome and mitochondrial DNA sequence variation". Human Mutation 24 (3): 248–60. doi:10.1002/humu.20077. PMID 15300852. 
  4. ^ Golden, Jonathan M., Ancient Canaan and Israel: an introduction. (2009). Oxford University Press US
  5. ^ Judges 3:5-6
  6. ^ Kings 17:24
  7. ^ 1 Chronicles 2:34-35
  8. ^ Price, Massoume, A Brief History of Iranian Jews. |url=
  9. ^ Genesis 17:9-14
  10. ^ Regueiro M, Cadenas AM, Gayden T, Underhill PA, Herrera RJ (2006). "Iran: tricontinental nexus for Y-chromosome driven migration". Human Heredity 61 (3): 132–43. doi:10.1159/000093774. PMID 16770078. 
  11. ^ Semino O, Passarino G, Oefner PJ, et al. (November 2000). "The genetic legacy of Paleolithic Homo sapiens sapiens in extant Europeans: a Y chromosome perspective". Science 290 (5494): 1155–9. doi:10.1126/science.290.5494.1155. PMID 11073453. 
  12. ^ Adams SM, Bosch E, Balaresque PL, et al. (December 2008). "The genetic legacy of religious diversity and intolerance: paternal lineages of Christians, Jews, and Muslims in the Iberian Peninsula". American Journal of Human Genetics 83 (6): 725–36. doi:10.1016/j.ajhg.2008.11.007. PMC 2668061. PMID 19061982. 
  13. ^ Cadenas AM, Zhivotovsky LA, Cavalli-Sforza LL, Underhill PA, Herrera RJ (March 2008). "Y-chromosome diversity characterizes the Gulf of Oman". European Journal of Human Genetics 16 (3): 374–86. doi:10.1038/sj.ejhg.5201934. PMID 17928816. 
  14. ^