It’s one thing to wonder where you got your nose or eyes from and it’s pretty amazing seeing them in 100 year old photos of ancestors, but have you ever wondered where all these body parts originated?
Is my dark hair from the Italian side or is it Black Scotch?
I’ve always wondered where my dark hair and light olive skin came from. At first I thought it was the Italian in me, but my mother has the same colouring’s and from what we knew there was no Mediterranean blood on her side.
With the recent discoveries I can confirm this and have come to the conclusion that it must be Black Scotch, but it made me wonder just how much of me is English, Scottish, Italian etc, so I applied a little bit of maths to figure this out in percentages.
Of course with DNA testing, you can only figure out the exact percentage of DNA inherited by testing each generation, but you can still make a good go of it.
You could also take the sex chromosome route which means males are 50% whatever their direct paternal line is and 50% whatever the direct maternal line is. For females, who only inherit their chromosomes from their mothers, you would be 100% whatever your direct maternal line is. So in that case I’m 100% Polish but my brother is 50% Polish and 50% English (Cornish).
So based on the generalised autosomal (all branches) line, from my calculations I am:
6.25% Prussian Polish &
I say generalised as you roughly inherit 50% from each parents and 25% from grandparents. But it’s not exact. For instance, I inherited 29.8% from my maternal grandfather and 19.9% from my maternal grandmother. But for the sake of generalised entertainment we’ll be going with the straight halves.
When figuring this out, I don’t include any colonised countries as I don’t think it counts unless you have indigenous blood. So I don’t include Australian as I don’t have any aboriginal blood in me, even though my ancestors have been in the country since settlement.
The same goes for North Americans, unless they have American-Indian or Eskimo blood or South Americans, who would have to use Spain, Portugal or whichever country their ancestors arrived from, unless they have Incan, Quechua or are related to any other native tribe of South America.
So you pretty much identify the closest ancestor on each line of your tree where their ancestors were all born in the same country. That closest ancestor gets 100%.
From here you halve the number for each generation going down to yourself.
So say your great-great grandparent was born in Spain before immigrating, and all their ancestors before them, to the best of your knowledge, were also born in Spain.
Your great-great grandparent would be 100% Spanish
Let’s say they married a 100% Englishwoman.
Any of their children (your great grandparent) would be 50% Spanish and 50% English.
Your great grandparent marries a man who is 50% Irish and 50% Scottish.
Their children, including your grandparent, would be 25% Spanish, 25% English, 25% Irish & 25% Scottish.
Your grandparent marries a 100% Englishwoman.
Your parent would now be 12.5% Spanish, 12.5% Irish, 12.5% Scottish and 62.5% English.
Your, let’s say father, now marries a 100% Scottish woman.
So you are 56.25% Scottish, 31.25% English, 6.25% Irish and 6.25% Spanish.
Follow that? If not here’s a diagram to help.
Maybe it’s just me, but I get a kick out of knowing these kinds of things!