DNA reveals European hunter-gatherers appearance

Researchers analysing a 7,000 year old hunter-gatherers DNA revealed some astonishing results, with the appearance of ancient Europeans having dark skin, dark hair and blue eyes. This eye colour was initially thought to have evolved later at the beginning of the agricultural age some 5,000 years ago.

Artists drawing of La Brana 1

Artists drawing of La Brana 1

The skeleton of two hunter-gatherers from the Mesolithic Era were found in Spain in 2006, and after DNA was extracted by specimen La Brana 1, did scientists find out the appearance of these ancient men. The report was issued in the journal Nature.

The finds also suggest that eye colour changed before skin colour, and their appearance has been linked to modern day Scandinavians. The Stone Age culture these two skeletons likely belonged to were one of the popular cultures within Europe of the time, and may stretched as far as Siberia.

The bones were found in Spain in subterranean conditions

The bones were found in Spain in subterranean conditions

Farming was the main change in Europe when agriculture became popular. Research suggests that these two skeletons were likely lactose intolerant and had trouble digesting starchy food. When farming began the tolerance of bacteria from animals changed, making our immunities stronger (although modern day people’s tolerance to gluten and lactose is becoming less and less it seems..).

The first recorded ol’ blue eyes is a great discovery in modern day appearances and also how our features have evolved over the years.

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One thought on “DNA reveals European hunter-gatherers appearance

  1. Pingback: What’s new? The archaeology weekly roundup 31/1/2014 |

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