October 8, 2018 12:17 am at 12:17 am #1600358
Can a genetic test tell you if you’re Sephardic, Ashkenazi, etc?
Recently, two people told me that they took a DNA ancestry test. The test told them that they are a percentage of this (e.g. Irish) and percentage that (e.g. Melanesian).
BUT… even if a test tells you that your genetic ancestry is from Egypt, or Germany, you can still be an Ashkenazi Egyptian Jew a Sephardi German Jew.
Also… the genetics cannot tell you whether the line is maternal or paternal (I think)… so my guess is that a genetic test cannot verify if you’re Sephardi or Ashkenazi.
Wondering if anyone has gotten a DNA ancestry test. What’s your opinion on being tested and/or interpreting your results?
Thank you 🙂October 8, 2018 7:43 am at 7:43 am #1600390
Its a lot easier to ask your tatah or zeidah if they ate gebrokts on pesach growing up. You correctly note that “country of origin” will not definitively inform you whether your family follow a particular hashkafah.October 8, 2018 7:43 am at 7:43 am #1600394
I don’t think these tests are accurate. Besides for Africans, most people globally are descendents of immigrants and mixed races. How do they have markers to test these “races”? The Sephardi and Ashkenazi groups are only a few hundred years old, how can they test Ashkenazi and Sephardim ancestry (as opposed to Michzrachim that were a distinct group from hundreds of years longer)? Sephardim have lived in Europe, not only in the Middle East and Africa, since the Spanish Inquisition, so how can they tell apart people by their genes when they lived on the same continents and in the same countries? Are minhugim part of their genes?
Identical twins and triplets who took these DNA tests often had completely different results from one another and regardless of all these “scientific” explanations, I’m not buying it. Siblings, especially if they are identical, should have the same, or very similar, genes makeup.October 8, 2018 7:43 am at 7:43 am #1600408
The DNA tests do tell you what purported percent your ancestry is Ashkenazic Jewish.October 8, 2018 7:43 am at 7:43 am #1600422
“Ashkenazi Egyptian Jew a Sephardi German Jew.”
There isn’t really such a thing.October 8, 2018 9:24 am at 9:24 am #1600449
Its a lot easier to ask your tatah or zeidah if they ate gebrokts on pesach growing up.
That’s good and well if your tatah was Frum and/or your zeidah is alive
Sad to say, I have neitherOctober 8, 2018 9:25 am at 9:25 am #1600466
23andme tells you what percentage you are Ashkenazi. It doesn’t say anything about Sephardi. However, if your results say 95% Ashkenazi and 5% Middle-Eastern/North African, or something like that, then it might be a safe assumption that you’re part Sephardi.October 8, 2018 9:25 am at 9:25 am #1600468
“Ashkenazi Egyptian Jew a Sephardi German Jew.” – is very common. People always moved back and forth, and routinely intermarried (as they continue to do so). While Jews only intermarried with other types of Jews (or with converts, whose genealogies we had to fake since converting to Judaism was a capital offense), goyim routinely travelled and mixed up genes. A test that says what percentage of ancestry is Ashkenazi is really saying that unlike other Europeans you are Middle Eastern, and that is probably an indicator of Jewish-ness (though remember the Romans recruited Middle Eastern troops for service in northern Europe and left them there when they were discharged.
When some asks me about ancestry, I prefer to reply that I’m descended from Adam ha-Rishon, and ask what they are descended from?October 8, 2018 9:25 am at 9:25 am #1600484
It has a category for Ashkenaz, but not for Sphard. I’m not sure what it would tell someone if they were 100% Sphardi and they took it.
Also, heads up, it always tells everyone that they’re like 2% African. I think it’s a political correctness thing.October 8, 2018 10:53 am at 10:53 am #1600573
I am from Germany and I did take an ancestry test, my results were mostly eastern European, southeastern European, British, a little Spanish, little bit middle eastern and Sephardic. If someone wants to take a look at my test results I don’t mind sending them to you. Almost all of my ancestors had black hair and they could pass for Spanish or Turkish. You can contact me, I don’t know if ancestry tests are correct but my sister took also an ancestry test from a different company and she got very similar results. GreetingsOctober 8, 2018 11:45 am at 11:45 am #1600600
After some thought, i sent my DNA sample (test tube of saliva) to Ancestry.com for analysis. The initial result was: 85% European Jewish, 12% Middle Eastern, 3% undetermined. I received an update from them a couple of weeks ago. based on (they said) an expanded data base. The revision shows me to be 100% European Jewish with the epicenter of my genome in historic Lithuania (based on their map of likely origins).
N.B. Ancestry’s category is “European” Jewish, Not “Ashkenazi”October 8, 2018 11:45 am at 11:45 am #1600602
23andme may not have a category for Sephard but other DNA testing labs do.October 8, 2018 11:59 am at 11:59 am #1600625
The Shady CharediParticipant
The answer to your questions is… yes.
There have been very recent advancements in this field in the last few months. It’s not 100%, but it is with very very high accuracy, including if it’s via the mother or the father.
I tried to post before with a link to a very recent, fascinating shiur by Rabbi Dr. Akiva Tatz discussing your exact questions, but perhaps the moderators didn’t allow a post with a link. [Moderator?]
So if you’re interested then DM me, or I can try to post again, or tell you what to Google to find the shiur.October 8, 2018 11:59 am at 11:59 am #1600627
🐵 ⌨ GamanitParticipant
LIghtbright; they can analyze the mitochondrial dna which only comes from the mother.October 8, 2018 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm #1600654
akuperma, it was not only the Middle Eastern soldiers they boughtt, he Romans themselves are descendents from the Hitites as well as other civilizations from the Levant. And of course, they assimilated with other races wherever they went.
Generally, Europeans originated from the Middle East and Asia, even the Frech and Germans. That’s why the alphebets have Semitic roots.October 8, 2018 4:09 pm at 4:09 pm #1600916
It is Time for TruthParticipant
“Ashkenazi Egyptian Jew
there were those also, in Alexandria
post more specific details perhaps?October 8, 2018 4:09 pm at 4:09 pm #1600910
It is Time for TruthParticipant
Sephardi German Jew.
sure there wereOctober 8, 2018 4:09 pm at 4:09 pm #1600901
No! You cannot know if you are a descendent of Ashkenazim or Sephardim regardless if the lab doing the DNA testing has such categories. You “may” be able to be tested for Jewish European genes which are slightly different than native European genes. But the results are not definite. I’m not familiar if Mizrachim and Sephardim living in the Middle East are genetically different than the local populations.October 8, 2018 6:44 pm at 6:44 pm #1600997
Ashkenazic and Sephardic Kohanim share a DNA profile that non-Kohanim lack.October 8, 2018 8:52 pm at 8:52 pm #1601012
Ubiquitin, Sephardim have lived in Amsterdam, the US, France, and other European countries and cities since their ancestors fled the Inquisition from Spain, Portugal, etc, which are countries in EUROPE. There are numerous old Sephardic shuls in all over Europe. The beginning of the Sephardim is similar to Ashkenazim who immigrated to Europe from Greece and the Levant.
Not as many Ashkenazim have emigrated to the Middle East over the centuries but there were pockets of communities and individual Ashkenazim who immigrated to the ME, most notably the Ashkenazim living in Israel over the past few centuries.October 8, 2018 9:41 pm at 9:41 pm #1601064
Many of the Sephardim who moved to the Ashkenazic countries of Europe following the Inquisition, their descendents became Ashkenazic in the centuries that followed. There’s a Chasidic dynasty whose Rebbes shtam from Sephardim. There’s also a famous Sephardi who lived in Poland and immigrated to the British colonies and financed the American revolution.October 8, 2018 9:41 pm at 9:41 pm #1601048
I meant Ashkenazim and Sephardim migrated to Europe from Greece and Rome, not from Greece and the Levant.October 9, 2018 7:29 am at 7:29 am #1601129
Joseph, are you referring to the Level Tahor “Chassidus”? …Just kidding, btw.October 10, 2018 11:56 am at 11:56 am #1602764
It is probably better not to be tested; you may find out some info about your background that you would rather not know.October 10, 2018 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm #1602793
cherrybim: The vast majority of frum Jews who come from a frum yichus have nothing to worry.October 10, 2018 1:22 pm at 1:22 pm #1603050
Jews in the MIddle East and Europe have always been mobile. Indeed, so have the many of the goyim.
One might suspect the firms offering for a fee to check your DNA and give you a fantastic story about your ancestry are being less the fully honest.October 10, 2018 5:21 pm at 5:21 pm #1603418
Joseph, what you know about your yichus only goes back several doros.
So if you have nothing to worry about, give it a shot.
I wonder if the test can give you a clue concerning mamzeirus and other things?October 10, 2018 6:21 pm at 6:21 pm #1603441
cherrybim: My point exactly was that the vast majority of frum people who have a frum line of yichus have no such things to worry about. This is an aveira that is very far from Jews, in general.October 15, 2018 3:27 am at 3:27 am #1604515
☢️ 🚭 ☣️ Rand0m3x 🧠🕴️🎲Participant
(Mamzeirus due to eishes ish would certainly not be detectable through genetics.)October 15, 2018 7:18 am at 7:18 am #1604542
Randomex: Actually it often will be since it will show close blood relatives with the biological father or his relatives who also took the ancestry test.October 15, 2018 7:24 am at 7:24 am #1604569
cherrybim: DNA testing can be used to determine paternity (if a given man and woman are the biological parents of a given child). However the laws determining mamzerus are more complicated than that.October 15, 2018 11:36 am at 11:36 am #1604718
For instance, if your are an Ashkenazi Jew from Europe and your family came to the USA after 1945, yet your results come back with traces of South American ancestry, hmm…October 15, 2018 11:36 am at 11:36 am #1604690
Hey dna can prove that Pocahontas has 1 Native American between 6 and 10 generations backOctober 15, 2018 2:57 pm at 2:57 pm #1604840
That is a very wrong nickname to use.October 15, 2018 3:20 pm at 3:20 pm #1604852
There are some genes that apparently are only found among certain groups, so if one has American (i.e. Indian, indigenous) ancestry it would be obvious. The trick is to be from a very isolated group (the Americans were almost totally cut off from the rest of humanity before the 16th century, the Australians before the 19th, and most Africans until the late 19th century). However in the bulk of Eurasia people moved around a great deal whether as conquerors or merchants, so genes are more mixed up, e.g. the “Middle Eastern” gene found in England could have come from a Jew, or perhaps a Cartheginian slave owned by a Roman, or from a Roman soldier recruited in the Middle East who stayed in England when discharged.October 15, 2018 5:54 pm at 5:54 pm #1604877
That is a very wrong nickname to use.
Why? Because liberals said so?October 15, 2018 8:05 pm at 8:05 pm #1605214
Even Yeshiva World News calls her PocahontasOctober 15, 2018 8:05 pm at 8:05 pm #1605211
Because Pocahontas/Rebecca Rolfe was not Cherokee or Delaware.October 16, 2018 7:11 pm at 7:11 pm #1605887
I don’t think headlines should generally use derogatory nicknames of any kind.
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