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things that just are

Thursday, January 12, 2006

The Four Matriarchs

From the WSJ Evening Wrap:

"About 3.5 million of the world's Ashkenazi Jews-- the Yiddish-speakers who settled Central Europe in the 12th and 13th centuries and today make up about 80% of the world's total Jewish population-- are the descendants of just four women, according to a new DNA analysis by Israeli researchers. There are about 11 million Ashkenazis in the world today, of a total global Jewish population of about 14 million. The four ancestors, who apparently lived in Europe or in the vicinity of Israel at some point within the past 2,000 years, left a DNA signature that shows up in their descendants today."


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