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Re: The Grail & the 12 Tribes
>I (no, my husband) once did the calculations back to the 6th century. The
>number was incredibly large, equalling more people than had ever lived on
>the earth combined. This points out that as you go backwards, you
>duplicate ancestors many times over so realistically do not have so many as
Especially if the community you're tracing emigrated in a bunch,
which was a common phenomenon. If they were tied together not only
by immediate family but also travelled as part of a larger close-knit
group, such as a religious community, they could be very closely related
over many generations. I may post another message about genetic drift.
The length of a generation can also become more or less fixed in such
a community, and it may be quite different from that of a neighboring
but not especially intermarried community, e.g., 30+ years vs. 15 years.
> Probably many of us can trace most of our ancestry to places in the
>British Isles (or any place) where we will lose the trail in some village
>but that pool of ancestors in those places shrinks as we go backwards.
>Thus we end up being related many times to the same people.
There was some recent research on this specific topic, which indicated
that even though before the 19th century the average person didn't move
more than about 5 miles during an entire lifetime, nonetheless there
was enough intermarriage between villages that basically everyone who
is descended from anyone in England at least is essentially descended
from everyone in England as recently as late medieval times.
> Also there might be many people in those villages that we are not
>related to but as the centuries proceed, their lines die out.
Lots of such dead branches in my family tree.
Then there are a few families that can be substantiated by multiple
lines of evidence to have survived for thousands of years, most notable
the Cohanim, for more than 100 generations of about 30 years each:
So there is substantial evidence of what happened to not only one of the
twelve tribes of Israel, but to one specific family of one of the tribes.
Note also that this family link is patrilineal, so this is an existence
proof that there can be reliable genetic transmission in the male line
for thousands of years.
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