Large-scale migration into Britain during the Middle to Late Bronze Age

Nick Patterson, Michael Isakov, Thomas Booth, Lindsey Büster, Claire-Elise Fischer, Inigo Olalde, Harald Ringbauer, Ali Akbari, Olivia Cheronet, Madeleine Bleasdale, Nicole Adamski, Eveline Altena, Rebecca Bernardos, Selina Brace, Nasreen Broomandkhoshbacht, Kimberley Callan, Daniel Fernandes, George Foody, Suzanne Freilich, Kirsten MandlAdam Micco, Megan Michel, Guillermo Morante, Jonas Oppenheimer, Kadir Ozdogan, Lijun Qiu, Constanze Schattke, Kirstin Stewardson, Noah Workman, Fatma Zalzala, Zhao Zhang, Bibiana Agusti, Tim Allen, Katalin Almassy, Luc Amkreutz, Abigail Ash, Christele Baillif-Ducros, Alistair Barclay, Clive Bonsall, Pippa Bradley, Marcus Brittain, Alison Brookes, Fraser Brown, Lisa Brown, Richard Brunning, Andrew Chamberlain, Sebastien Chauvin, Sharon Clough, Natalija Condic, Alfredo Coppa, Oliver Craig, Matija Cresnar, Vicki Cummings, Szabolcs Czifra, Alzbeta Danielisova, Robin Daniels, Alex Davies, Philip de Jersey, Jody Deacon, Csilla Deminger, Peter Ditchfield, Marko Dizdar, Miroslav Dobes, Miluse Dobisikova, Laszlo Domboroczki, Gail Drinkall, Ana Dukic, Ceiridwen Edwards, Michal Ernee, Harry Fokkens, Chris Fowler, Allison Fox, Zsolt Galina, Michelle Gamble, Manuel Gonzalez Morales, Borja Gonzalez-Rabanal, Adrian Green, Katalin Gyenesei, Diederick Habermehl, Tamas Hajdu, Derek Hamilton, James Harris, Chris Hayden, Joep Hendriks, Benedicte Hernu, Gill Hey, Milan Hornak, Gabor Ilon, Eszter Istvanovits, Andy Jones, Martina Blecic, Kevin Kazek, Robert Kenyon, Amal Khreisheh, Viktoria Kiss, Jos Kleijne, Mark Knight, Lisette Kootker, Peter Kovacs, Anita Kozubova, Gabriella Kulcsar, Valeria Kulcsar, Christophe Le Pennec, Michael Legge, Philip Mason, Damir Matosevic, Andy Maxted, Tom Lord, Dzeni Los, James Lyall, Ana Marin-Arroyo, Lauren McIntyre, Jacqueline McKinley, Kathleen McSweeney, Bernard Meijlink, Balazs Mende, Marko Mendusic, Milan Metlicka, Sophie Meyer, Kristina Mihovilic, Lidija Milasinovic, Steve Minnitt, Joanna Moore, Geoff Morley, Graham Mullan, Margareta Musilova, Benajmin Neil, Rebecca Nicholls, Mario Novak, Maria Pele, Martin Papworth, Cecile Paresys, Ricky Patten, Domagoj Perkic, Krisztina Persti, Alba Petit, Katarina Petriscakova, Coline Pichon, Catriona Pickard, Zoltan Pilling, Douglas Price, Sinisa Radovic, Rebecca Redfern, Branislav Resutik, Daniel Rhodes, Martin Richards, Amy Roberts, Jean Roefstra, Pavel Sankot, Alena Sefcakova, Alison Sheridan, Sabine Skae, Anna Szecsenyi-Nagy, Tamas Szeniczey, Jonathan Tabor, Karoly Tanko, Clenis Tavarez Maria, Rachel Terry, Biba Terzan, Maria Teschler-Nicola, Jesus Torres-Martinez, Julien Trapp, Ross Turle, Ferenc Ujvari, Menno van der Heiden, Petr Veleminsky, Barbara Veselka, Zdenek Vytlacil, Clive Waddington, Paula Ware, Paul Wilkinson, Linda Wilson, Rob Wiseman, Eildih Young, Josko Zaninovic, Andrej Zitnan, Carles Lalueza-Fox, Peter de Knijff, Ian Barnes, Peter Halkon, Mark Thomas, Douglas Kennett, Barry Cunliffe, Malcom Lillie, Nadin Rohland, Ron Pinhasi, Ian Armit, David Reich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Present-day people from England and Wales have more ancestry derived from early European farmers (EEF) than did people of the Early Bronze Age1. To understand this, here we generated genome-wide data from 793 individuals, increasing data from the Middle to the Late Bronze Age and Iron Age in Britain by 12-fold, and western and central Europe by 3.5-fold. Between 1000 and 875 bc, EEF ancestry increased in southern Britain (England and Wales) but not northern Britain (Scotland) due to incorporation of migrants who arrived at this time and over previous centuries, and who were genetically most similar to ancient individuals from France. These migrants contributed about half the ancestry of people of England and Wales from the Iron Age, thereby creating a plausible vector for the spread of early Celtic languages into Britain. These patterns are part of a broader trend of EEF ancestry becoming more similar across central and western Europe in the Middle to the Late Bronze Age, coincident with archaeological evidence of intensified cultural exchange2–6. There was comparatively less gene flow from continental Europe during the Iron Age, and the independent genetic trajectory in Britain is also reflected in the rise of the allele conferring lactase persistence to approximately 50% by this time compared to approximately 7% in central Europe where it rose rapidly in frequency only a millennium later. This suggests that dairy products were used in qualitatively different ways in Britain and in central Europe over this period.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)588–594
Number of pages7
JournalNature
Volume601
Issue number7894
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Large-scale migration into Britain during the Middle to Late Bronze Age'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this