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Gene analysis reveals Bronze Age slavery

Gene analysis reveals Bronze Age slavery


High status families in late Neolithic and Bronze Age Germany kept slaves, genetic analysis reveals. The finding, reported in the journal Science, provides fresh insight into ancient life in Europe, showing that complex slave-owning societies were well established long before those of classical Greece and Rome. The research, centred on genome-wide data gathered from 104 individuals buried in Germany’s Lech Valley between about 2500 BCE and 1700 BCE, was conducted by researchers led by archaeo-geneticist Alissa Mittnik from the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, in Jena, Germany. The scientists gathered nuclear and mitochondrial DNA from each individual and compared it to genetic databases covering ancient and modern humans. They also looked at how the graves were arranged and examined the relationship between the number and type of artefacts buried in each. The picture that emerged was of a surprisingly stable and enduring society that depended on the import of…
Source: Gene analysis reveals Bronze Age slavery

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