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Click link to order The Seven Daughters of Eve
The Seven
Daughters of Eve:
The Science that
Reveals Our
Genetic Ancestry

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The Seven
Daughters of Eve

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hen Bryan Sykes wrote The Seven Daughters of Eve: The Science that Reveals Our Genetic Ancestry, he explained the genetic science used to depict the migrations of humans out of Africa and across the globe over thousands of years. In particular, he explored the genetics and settlement of Europe, showing that Europeans still exhibit ancient DNA patterns of the old hunter-gather peoples as well as newer patterns brought in by the early farmers from the Middle East.

Tests for the genetic patterns of mitochondrial DNA -- passed on only by mothers to their daughters and sons -- showed seven major groupings in Europe. To bring them to life for his readers, Sykes gave them names to match their haplogroup letter. Listed by estimated age, they are:

  Haplogroup U - Ursula,
    55,000 years ago, including
    U5, established well before
    start of agriculture.
  Haplogroup J - Jasmine,
    45,000 years ago
  Haplogroup X - Xenia, 30,000
    years ago.
  Haplogroup H - Helena, 30,000
    years ago,
  Haplogroup K
- Katrine, 12,000
    years ago
  Haplogroup V - Velda, 12,000
    years ago.
  Haplogroup T - Tara, 10,000
    years ago.

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Trace Your Roots with DNA: Use Your DNA to Complete Your Family Tree


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DNA & Genealogy


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How to Interpret Family History and Ancestry DNA Test Results for Beginners: The Geography and History of Your Relatives


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The Genetic Strand:
Exploring a Family
History Through DNA


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How to Interpret Your DNA Test Results For Family History & Ancestry: Scientists Speak Out on Genealogy Joining Genetics


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The Real Eve:
Modern Man's
Out of Africa


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The Journey of Man:
A Genetic Odyssey


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The History and
Geography of
Human Genes


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Genetics and the
Search for Modern
Human Origins


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Genes, Peoples
and Languages


GO TO:  Overview | mtDNA Haplogroups | Haplogroup U & U5 | Maps

OVERVIEW     [ Top ]

What is mitochondrial DNA? Mitochondria have their own DNA, known as mtDNA

What are mtDNA haplogroups? and how are they used to understand human migration?

Human mtDNA diversity before migration out of Africa was quite restricted

Genetic Genealogy: learn how  results of mtDNA and Y DNA research are used to trace human origins across the globe

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Deep Ancestry:
Inside The
Genographic Project

Genetic Genealogy: Understanding haplogroups is a key to applying genetics to family history. Has charts describing many of the maternal or mtDNA haplogroups and paternal or Y DNA haplogroups. Handy!

The Adam and Eve of Genetics: mtDNA and Y DNA reveals quite a bit about evolution and families [click on Enter Salon to view].

Genetic Anthropology including ancestry and ancient human migrations, with frequently asked questions, answers

mtDNA HAPLOGROUPS      [ Top ]

Human mtDNA Haplogroups around the world, with map

Descriptions of mtDNA haplogroups with links

Europe's seven maternal lineages, the oldest being U -- dated to 45,000 years ago and called Ursula, the Latin for she-bear

star-red.gif (874 bytes) PLOS ONE: The Peopling of Europe from the Mitochondrial Haplogroup U5 Perspective. Explore U5 and its subhaplogroups U5a and U5b

star-red.gif (874 bytes) Ancient Eurasian DNA - chart with archaeological sites with mtDNA and Y DNA found, country and approximate date. Includes sites in Germany, Italy, Russia, Morocco and more.

The Neolithic Invasion of Europe -- genetics show the contribution of Near Eastern lineages to the gene pool of modern Europeans is about a quarter of the population, much less than once thought.

Europe's first farmers were "experienced outsiders who arrived... around 5500 B.C. with animals in tow" and seldom mated with the exisiting hunter-gathers, new genetic research shows

Bryan Sykes, his book on the Seven Daughters of Eve -- the female ancestors of Europeans -- and his firm Oxford Ancestors

Bryan Sykes interviewed by New York Times, The Telegraph

HAPLOGROUP U and Subgroup U5      [ Top ]

Haplogroup U is very old, has subgroups including U5, and is considered to be the oldest human mtDNA in Europe

Haplogroup U is very large, and can be considered a super haplogroup

Cheddar Man, Britain's oldest complete skeleton, some 9,000 years old, has Haplogroup U mtDNA

How the age of Haplogroup U is determined -- as discussed in a book called Saxons, Vikings, and Celts,  by Bryan Sykes, author of The Seven Daughters of Eve

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Saxons, Vikings, Celts:
The Genetic Roots of
Britain and Ireland

Saxons, Vikings, Celts

Haplogroup U5 -- considered to be the first Haplogroup U subgroup to enter Europe -- is most closely aligned with Sykes' Ursula

Clan Ursula at World Families Forums, varied postings including a discussion that the origin of U5 is northern Europe

Who was Ursula? - the clan mother of 45,000 years ago

mtDNA U5 Project -- Haplogroup U includes U1-U7 and K. U5, with its sublineages, is said to be the oldest European-specific haplogroup. See genetic tree of haplogroup lineages.

mtDNA Haplogroup U5 Project -- listing of more than 400 matriarchs with maternal pedigrees, with ancestors traced to Austria, British Isles, Finland, Germany, Norway, Poland, Spain, USA

U5 mtDNA as found today in Europe, including Scandinavia, Northern Germany and the British Isles, and U5 mtDNA as defined by geneticists

HAPLOGROUP U Subgroup U5b      [ Top ]

U5, U5a and U5b are often found in peoples of far northern Europe, and their ancestors are thought to have been among the peoples who migrated north as the glaciers melted at the end of the last Ice Age.

U5b mtDNA sublineage is found throughout western and central Europe, is considered part of the original European populations, and also is associated with far northern Europe.

U5b mtDNA found in ancient samples that are Medieval Anglo-Saxon, Ancient German [Saxony, 3,000 and 4,600 years ago, including one from Eulau Corded Ware Culture), and Danish Viking [u5b1].

U5b1 and U5b2 are common subhaplogroups among people of Denmark, the country just north of Schleswig-Holstein, Germany.

Example of U5b with specific differences from the Cambridge Reference Sequence or CRS shown. The ancestry is for a woman born in Haderslev Amt, Denmark, an area considered South Jutland / North Schleswig.

A U5b1 Project with definitions, origin, distribution, and how to participate.

HAPLOGROUP U and Subgroup U4      [ Top ]

U4 Haplogroup Blog: U5 and U4 were dominant among hunter- gatherers in Central and northern Europe, with the oldest known dating back to 13,400 BC at Hohler Fels, in Germany. Blog for U4 folks.


Map of Haplogroups U, including U5, and K -- including the migration and development of these genetic groupings

Global Map of mtDNA Migrations -- see Haplogroup U in context

Maps of Human Migrations -- routes, periods


Geneographic Project from National Geographic on human migration of 200,000 years as shown in the Atlas of the Human Journey, with audio

Geneographic Project - 2005 launch, description, and a report from the BBC on the project led by Dr. Spencer Wells.

DNA Family Trees: what you can and cannot learn about ancestors via DNA testing

23andme: Find and connect with people who share your haplogroup

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Mapping Human
History: Discovering
the Past Through
Our Genes


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Journey of Man


"Postglacial recolonization of Europe by modern humans: a signal from mtDNA haplogroup U," asserting that U5 is one of the largest western Eurasian maternal lineage clades.

"Differentiation of the Mitochondrial Subhaplogroup U4 in the Populations of Eastern Europe, Ural, and Western Siberia"

The Genographic Project Public Participation Mitochondrial DNA Database - based on 78,590 mtDNA samples and an interview with Spencer Wells, who heads the project

Human Genetic Variation in Europe:  excerpt of a narrated slide talk by genetics professor Antonio Torroni, Pavia University, Italy, and more human genetic diversity talks, including by Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza, Stanford University. See all talks on human population genetics [be sure to click the down arrows to show all the topics, experts].

To learn more about scientific discoveries about human migrations and populations, use our Web guide -- with links to Web sites and research papers:
Paleolithic of Eurasia and Alaska.

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Ancient Encounters:
Kennewick Man and
the First Americans

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Molecule Hunt:
Archaeology and the
Search for Ancient DNA


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The History and
Geography of
Human Genes

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A Brain for All Seasons:
Human Evolution and
Abrupt Climate Change


Click link to order The Human Inheritance
The Human Inheritance: Genes,
Language and

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Origins of Native Americans: Evidence
from Anthropological


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