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Exogamy in the European late neolithic and early bronze age


Joerg

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Reading up on molecular biology and its impact on archaeologly I came across this article which confirms findings from a female burial that came up in connection with the battle of the Tollense crossing:

https://www.pnas.org/content/114/38/10083

Basically, this is proof that people found their wives outside of their own communities. What is surprising is that these wives often traveled more than hundred kilometers (or miles) to their new homes.

What is strange is that there is hardly any evidence for their offspring in the area investigated (the Lech valley upriver of Augsburg).

 

The model of Heortling exogamy for Sartar might be rather hide-bound compared to these early Europeans. The Sartar dynasty might be one of the few bloodlines with similar variety in their wives, including Grazer, Old Tarsh, Telmori and an attempt at Esrolian ancestry for their partners.

 

Tooth chemistry suggests that these women were well over 16 years old when joining the population on the Lech. Given a generally shorter life-span in those times, I wonder whether they left some children at their old homes before making the trek to new hearths. If these people practiced something like serial monogamy (on the side of the wives, no idea about the males), creating their family trees will easily become a wild web across communities.

The Ernalsulva marriage in Sartar: Kingdom of Heroes suggests that at least Gloranthan earth priestesses undergo such serial marriages, joining more than one marriage partner's clan throughout their lives, although unlike these women their male offspring remains with the paternal clan. The females will spread on, of course. When checking the possible family network of a 90 year old priestess of Asrelia, I came to the conclusion that her female lineage offspring would realistically be spread across several tribes, as priestesshood tends to run in families given the special educational benefits of growing up in a priestess' household.

I have a slight beef with the sample characters of RQG in that there are two females born into their paternal clan and still being active members, although in both cases they are valid exceptions - Vasana has taken the Vingan role, which tends to remain in the paternal clan, and Yanioth is a priestess of the Clearwine Earth temple, which is almost a matrilocal clan of its own. They do set a precedence which will mislead players with less familiarity with Orlanthi marriage customs to assume that most females stick with their birth clans. Luckily the Red Cow HQG books set this straight, presenting some female politics on the sidelines of the Eleven Lights campaign.

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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Recently noted an article finding that there appeared to be an almost 100% replacement of the male genetics -- but not female! -- on the Iberian peninsula, thousands of years ago.  Closest male genetics far away, in east/central Europe.

I know of no vectored diseases that are gender-specific, which might explain it.  I am having a hard time coming up with any other (likely) explanation that an invading army, at this point.

Or some data that invalidates the study...?

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56 minutes ago, DerKrieger said:

There are multiple bloodlines within a Clan. Would all marriages take place across clans or is that just the most common pairing?

The way I understand it, the way marriage is defined among the Orlanthi, the clan is the smallest relevant unit for exogamy. A marriage is a transactional contract between two clans. To them, marriage within a clan would not only not really be legally possible (mentioned above), but would also have some of the same stigma to them as incest does to us. It's... icky.

I've previously argued that there are probably ways to get around this, such as asking a member of another clan (possibly a relative) to act as a foster-parent or something for one of the partners in a hypothethical case where two members of the same clan want to marry. But that's purely speculative, and would still be very unorthodox.

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There is no ban on procreation between bloodlines inside a clan, but there is no meaningful marriage system. The father simply doesn't get much say in the upbringing of the offspring as the unmarried daughter of a household produces new members of that household - unless she was impregnated on behalf of a cult which has a separate social standing inside the clan, which means that the offspring is raised by the cult rather than the maternal household. The Clearwine Earth Temple certainly is such an institution, but then it has almost a standing like a separate clan.

I think that there will be certain blood lines that will predominantly be wed to a specific clan, some exporting (sending virtually all of their daughters into the same clan), some importing (taking nearly all their wives from a certain clan), but that won't be the rule. Still, the wise match-maker will consider carefully whether to put wives from feuding clans into the same household. They might, in certain cases (possibly when said household is on their nemesis list).

 

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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I've always played it that you marry outside your clan, but usually within your tribe. 

However, thinking about the distances mentioned in Joerg's posting, that would often mean brides are exchanged from outside of Dragon Pass. In other words, marriage is not just a uniter of clans into tribes, but is used to create ties between distant clans and tribes. 

So perhaps one of the functions of the traveling Issaries merchant is to be aware of marriageable men and women, and help set up marriages between distant clans. They then take advantage of the ties formed by the those marriages as part of the trade routes. Your cousin Heoruvard in Aggar is going to have a fine supply of wool this year. He's willing to trade it to you for Clearwine and good bronze work. 

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5 hours ago, pachristian said:

I've always played it that you marry outside your clan, but usually within your tribe. 

However, thinking about the distances mentioned in Joerg's posting, that would often mean brides are exchanged from outside of Dragon Pass. In other words, marriage is not just a uniter of clans into tribes, but is used to create ties between distant clans and tribes. 

So perhaps one of the functions of the traveling Issaries merchant is to be aware of marriageable men and women, and help set up marriages between distant clans. They then take advantage of the ties formed by the those marriages as part of the trade routes. Your cousin Heoruvard in Aggar is going to have a fine supply of wool this year. He's willing to trade it to you for Clearwine and good bronze work. 

Are all Heortlings patrilocal? 

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1 hour ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Are all Heortlings patrilocal? 

Acording to RQG p28, most Orlanthi clans are 'Mixed: In a mixed descent system (common in Sartar, Tarsh, and most Praxian tribes), you belong to your higher status parent’s clan.', not patrilineal, nor patrilocal.

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17 minutes ago, Kloster said:

Acording to RQG p28, most Orlanthi clans are 'Mixed: In a mixed descent system (common in Sartar, Tarsh, and most Praxian tribes), you belong to your higher status parent’s clan.', not patrilineal, nor patrilocal.

This still will mean that pairings of roughly equal status couples will live patrilocal, unless they find a shared time solution like Sartar and the first FHQ found in their contest of 1493 and 1494, resulting in Yorestina staying with her Grazer kin and Saronil remaining in Boldhome (before he was fostered to the Shaker's Temple in Tarsh). Powerful females have an easy way to keep the offspring of powerful partners to themselves - undergo a non-permanent form of marriage that will terminate the marriage before the first visible signs of pregnancy. There is still a chance that the father will acknowledge the offspring, but the opportunity to raise these kids will go to the maternal community (clan/family or temple). Note that child-raising is a typical grandmother job, even more so for magically and politically active powerful women. Once the children are weaned, they join the group of sub-adolescent family children supervised by the alpha female of the household, usually delegated to another family female or two with special affinity to this task. The concept of a core family might be more common in the smaller cottar households if they are isolated. At larger steads with carls and cottars cohabitating, the cottar offspring is as likely to join the more numerous carl children and share in their upbringing, with a chance to become boon companions of the higher status playmates once they reach adulthood.

The differences between Orlanthi domestic life and concepts of property and those of 20th and nowadays also 21st century players can be worth exploring in play, although I probably wouldn't hit absolute newcomers from much less immersive game systems and settings frontally with this, and start with a mercenary/boon companions of high ranking individuals party rather than with ordinary Orlanthi conditions.

There is story and character development potential in thinking these relationships through, though. Most easily in HQG where social skills can be as deadly as martial ones, probably a lot less so in 13G or any incarnation of RQ, unless you express these through sidekicks and other followers.

Most of the published exploration of Glorantha and especially Sartar and Prax has been from a male perspective, with Yanioth the only exception in the current line-up of sample characters, and Norayeep possibly approaching such a role, though her initial position as a slave thoroughly downplayed that role in Biturian's travelogue. The Paulis Longvale story doesn't have any major female protagonists. In the classic and renaissance RQ scenarios, the empowered females all had taken male roles and cults (yes, including Yelorna, which is a cult about role reversal), and likewise in the Sartar campaign around the Temple of the Wooden Sword. Benava Chan is the only typical Ernaldan prior to Ernalsulva and Yanioth and the Red Cow line-up of the women's circle. All the ruling tribal queens in Sartar since Kallyr's rebellion have been warrior queens, not a single priestess matron queen among them (with the possible Kyger Litor exception for the Torkani).

I know that Jeff's house campaign has had empowered Ernaldans, and it looks like the Ernaldan class in 13G works in a similar way, but both of these are rather recent additions to Gloranthan canon. John Hughes' approach in Thunder Rebels did offer some new magical roles for Ernaldans, but on the whole these were rather domestic and puritanic, something correctly challenged by Jeff's bunch of female players.

But then, bringing pregnancy or breast feeding into adventure situations might be as alienating to the typical female role-players we'd like to rope in to our niche of the hobby as it may be for the average adolescent (or late fifties still adolescent) male players, even though a toddler on the arm can be more disarming than a troop of spearmen for an Ernaldan.

I found addressing those family issues to strike a chord with committed female partners of established male roleplayers and some experience with child care, however. In my Hero Wars Balmyr game, my former partner (a divorced mother of two children, who made up the rest of the party's players) felt right at home with a career Ernaldan healer whose children from temporary marriages were raised by their paternal grandmothers, or by her own mother and aunts. The emotional issues with that provided some deep character motivation.

 

The issue of temporary or terminated patrilocal marriages brings a whole lot of personal connections and even awareness of clan secrets with more than one clan other than the native clan, and also the issue of offspring outside of the character's normal daily life. Depending on the circumstances of termination of the marriage, and on the relationship to her mothers-in-law, such females may make excellent diplomats and essential companions or at least advisors of the clan trader when visiting those clans, with a chance for a mother to meet her foreign children once in a while. Similar with females accompanying the trader/diplomat to their clan of birth.

A bit of the same goes for males who had joined other clans as the result of temporary or terminated matrilocal marriages, of course, but that kind of distance makes developing paternal feelings for those distant offspring a bit harder. Even though Orlanthi males are more sentimental and emotional than Ernaldan females, but the maternal bond epitomized by Ernalda is a very strong magic and sentiment that will interfere with the more rational outlook of Ernaldan females.

I wouldn't dare to run a game of Robin Laws' drama system around these issues, though. A game of magical and political intrigue mixed with as many action sequences as with such passions is as far as my storytelling will go. And I will have to test the RQG passion system for its ability to reflect such issues.

 

Interaction between patrilocally raised Sartarite females and the dominantly matrilocal culture of Esrolia (and especially Nochet) is something I am still mulling over for the Nochet part of my funerary pilgrimage scenario.

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Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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On 3/30/2019 at 12:20 AM, g33k said:

Recently noted an article finding that there appeared to be an almost 100% replacement of the male genetics -- but not female! -- on the Iberian peninsula, thousands of years ago.  Closest male genetics far away, in east/central Europe.

I know of no vectored diseases that are gender-specific, which might explain it.  I am having a hard time coming up with any other (likely) explanation that an invading army, at this point.

Or some data that invalidates the study...?

No, this is almost certainly the case. It's a pattern that is seen all over the place.

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20 hours ago, Akhôrahil said:

No, this is almost certainly the case. It's a pattern that is seen all over the place.

I've never before seen a claim of 100% replacement over such a broad region.

Even the Cro-Magnon replacement of Neanderthal was only 98% or so...

 

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5 hours ago, g33k said:

I've never before seen a claim of 100% replacement over such a broad region.

Even the Cro-Magnon replacement of Neanderthal was only 98% or so...

Icelanders have an almost exclusively north-Germanic heritage in the male line, but about 50% Irish on the female. In this case, the mechanics were a little different (slave import and uni-directional intermarriage), but the outcome is the same kind of thing.

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18 hours ago, g33k said:

I've never before seen a claim of 100% replacement over such a broad region.

Not 100%. But it appears that much of the Y-DNA haplogroup G, increasingly associated with the Neolithic farmer culture, was wiped out across Europe leaving scattered individuals and isolated pockets (e.g. Sardinia, Caucasus).  [As a haplogroup G descendant, I can attest we weren't wiped out.]

Edited by jajagappa
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19 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Not 100%. But it appears that much of the Y-DNA haplogroup G, increasingly associated with the Neolithic farmer culture, was wiped out across Europe leaving scattered individuals and isolated pockets (e.g. Sardinia, Caucasus).  [As a haplogroup G descendant, I can attest we weren't wiped out.]

As we're talking demography, I would like to offer up the following little piece, which might well be Glorantha-relevant:

Among humans (on average), we have about twice as many female as male ancestors (because of different reproductive strategies and successes). Meaning that when Heortling Ancestors show up, they should by rights be two-thirds women. :-)

Edited by Akhôrahil
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7 hours ago, Akhôrahil said:

As we're talking demography, I would like to offer up the following little piece, which might well be Glorantha-relevant:

Among humans (on average), we have about twice as many female as male ancestors (because of different reproductive strategies and successes). Meaning that when Heortling Ancestors show up, they should by rights be two-thirds women. 🙂

This statistical trend is why the Y-chromosomal Adam is significantly more recent than the Mitochondrial Eve, for example.

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1 hour ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

This statistical trend is why the Y-chromosomal Adam is significantly more recent than the Mitochondrial Eve, for example.

A couple of years ago, a new Y-haplogroup was found, pushing the likely "Adam" back earlier than "Eve;" although there's a slight overlap in the earliest-likely-date for Adam and the oldedst-likely for Eve.   https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4381518/

Quote

... we date the Y-chromosomal most recent common ancestor (MRCA) in Africa at 254 (95% CI 192–307) kya ...

Eve is usually cited as 150-200 KY; recent research puts mt-Eve likely on the early-end of that, which would be entirely out of any overlap with Y-Adam.

 

Interestingly, about 2/3 of European male ancestry appears to be from just 3 individuals in the past 7500 years:

https://www.iflscience.com/plants-and-animals/handful-bronze-age-men-could-have-fathered-two-thirds-europeans/ 

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