DNA

I’ve been interested in having my DNA tested for a while, but it’s been too expensive. Ancestry.com has launched a new DNA testing service and as a subscriber, I was given a special deal… so I took it.

I received my results last night and at first I was surprised. I’ve read more into it and it started to make sense.

First, I have to say it’s pretty excellent to see the 27% Armenian blood. That can be detected from my saliva! It’s particularly amazing when you’re from a group of people who another group tried to wipe off the planet. They forced my people out of their homeland, but nearly 100 years later, I’m carring their DNA inside me! Crazy.

The large Central European percentage surprised me–I had imagined that I’d see more British Isles (rather than NONE).  So Central Europe includes places I know my family comes from: Germany and Switzerland.  Here’s the thing– this is also where the Celts originated. So I’m guessing a good amount of my percentage is Celtic and therefore British.

The 11% Southern European is a total surprise, but I do have people in my family I don’t know a lot about. It’ll be interesting to see how detailed that can get once Ancestry amasses more data. “Italy, Spain and Portugal” isn’t specific enough for me.

Finally, the 10% Scandinavian felt surprising at first, as well. I haven’t found anyone from Denmark, Norway or Sweden in my ancestry. Reading deeper I see this is where the Vikings started out and some ended up in Northern England, Scotland and Ireland.  This would make sense for the Scots-Irish and Northern British people in my family tree.

Some people aren’t sure if they trust AncestryDNA, but my results seem like mostly they line up with my assumptions. The Genetic Genealogist  has a great post addressing Ancestry’s Ethnic Prediction, which makes sense to me.  I don’t think this is a perfect test and for me, it felt like a taste of DNA testing. I would like to test again, with another service, and be able to download the raw data of my results.

If my British/Scottish ancestors are represented well in these results it does make me hope the results get more detailed. For instance, are my British ancestors oringinally Anglo Saxons–originating in Germany? Or Normans originating in France? Or were they Celts? “Central Europe” covers all of these, so sure, they’re in there, but where?

None of this matters in a big way to me, except perhaps to pinpoint ancestors that I simply have not been able to uncover in other ways. It’s also just amazing to spit in a plastic tube, mail it away, have a lab analyze it and then tell you where your ancestors came from. Amazing and really weird.

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2 thoughts on “DNA

  1. Lisa C. says:

    Very cool post! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Alli G says:

    I always knew that your name was really Giannifer!

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