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7717The Tarim (was Re: Ghee)

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  • gianottadallafiora
    Nov 23, 2009
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      FYI; just saw a program about the Tarim mummies, in which genetic testing was done.

      The results were extremely interesting. Turns out the Tarim were more analagous to today's modern American culture; genetically, they were a melting pot of Asian, Eurasian, and European stock. They were trading and intermarrying with all the cultures that they encountered/passed through/etc., it seems.

      YIS,
      Adelisa di Salerno

      --- In SCA-Herbalist@yahoogroups.com, jack hollandbeck <original_xman@...> wrote:
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      > Howdy all. I have to put my 1.73 cents (devalued) in. This is a bit of a pet peeve of mine. The Tarim mummies were not Celts . They may have gotten that stigma from their reddish hair, and some of their textiles were herringbone weave or with plaid patterns. These are simply early textiles. As for their height, that could be due to diet. Europeans tended to be bigger the farther north they lived and that is assumed to be from the higher percentage of meat in their diets, much as the Japanese began to get taller after WWII, and their adoption of a more meaty American diet. On the whole, the ancients were shorter than the average European of today. The Roman male averaged 5'5''-5'7", the British male a bit less, Gallic males were up to 5'10" and Germans around 6'0". However the Mediterranean males were shorter. The Greeks averaged around 5'3" (the dreaded Spartans were peewees) and Palestinians around 5'0". Compare this with the 5'3"-5'6" Neandertal males. On the whole, they were shorter and slighter. People of the Mediterranean Basin ate more veggies and seafood because it was easier to garden there than farther north. Now to period, go check out the armor collections for the middle ages and Renaissance. The knightly class (aristocracy) had the best diets available in their times. However the armor on display are not for big, modern professional atheletes. Those men were still almost average in height compared to today, and much slighter. They also had chicken legs. I don't know how they could walk without calves. Anyway, there are always exceptions such as Charlemagne and Henry VIII. As for the Tarim mummies being Celts, I don't think so. (proper Celtic studies only began after WWII) They were broadly simultaneous to the Halstatt Culture, or the first true Celtic peoples. Even in this celtic is a linguistic group with shared art and technology, which was also shared by non-celtic groups (such as some of the plastic plants and animals used in decoration, and much of the plant imagery was from the Greeks. The Tarim mummy people probably spoke and Indo-Iranian rather than Indo-European language.To speak of a Celtic Culture is inappropriate but oh so popular. Celtic culture is very modern phenomenon, and I suspect has some linkages back to the 18th-19th centuries notion of the noble savage. The first of this phenomenon may have been the Scottish plaid craze that took hold in Victorian England. Remember the clearances following the 1740 revolt of Bonnie Prince Charlie, and all the English aristocrats went north to take over the lands, ejecting the Scots and their cattle for sheep. It was also Victorian England which glorified the Highland regiments and their kilts. Tartans were invented, as well as regularizing clans. There were no clan tartans before Victoria. Nowadays, Celtic culture has spread from reference to the Irish out to the Scots (I am Clan Henderson). Today the last of these linguistically Celtic European peoples are the Irish, Scots, Welsh, Manx, Cornish and Bretons. There are other groups in Eastern Europe and the Middle East (Galatians in Turkey come to mind). No one used the term Celt as official until very recently. Up until very recently these groups were referred to by tribe (ancient) or region (medieval and Renaissance). Sorry for the essay, but I have made some study of this issue. The issue is not helped by all the Renaissance festivals which really muddy up the Celts. I love the fairs, but they are not history. The participants my be historically accurate, but the venue is not. I am sure there is a similar contradiction with the Robin Hood festivals in England. Unfortunately, the word "Celtic" has a popular meaning, as in Celtic Culture, but that is artificial and inaccurate. The Tarim were not Celts. They just had red hair, long legs, wore plaid sometimes and spoke an Iranian dialect. For the medieval and Renaissance periods just call them Irish, Scots, Manx, Welsh, Cornish and Bretons. That would be historically accurate.
      > Jack
      > ps There is archaeological evidence that the Tarim mummy people (long head European types) interacted peacefully and intermarried with round headed Asian types. This does not necessarily debunk the violence of the ancestors. It does set a nice precedent.
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      > On the medieval side: The Tarim mummies, for those who aren't familiar
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      > with them, are a group of natural mummies found in the Tarim basin of
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      > China. Despite being Bronze age and being buried long before anyone
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      > from the west was supposed to (by our knowledge) traveling that far
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      > eastward, they appear to be of Celtic origin and the adults were over 6
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      > ft. tall. There is evidence that they actually introduced writing and
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      > chariots to China. So the myth that our medieval ancestors were shorter
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      > than us is once again debunked. The myth that our medieval ancestors
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      > lived shorter lifespans is also debunked by these and other finds. The
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      > question is do you think it was diet?
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      > Avacyn
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