In the first part of this blog series, we learned about some of the oldest and most well-preserved family trees. Not surprisingly, those family trees were all linked to royal bloodlines where power, wealth, and inheritance largely depended on blood relations and family ties.
In the second part of this series, we’ll add another royal family to our list before moving on to another bloodline that is just as fascinating.
The Imperial Family of Japan
Many historians believe that Japan’s imperial family is currently the oldest-running monarchy, and they have a bloodline that’s been documented all the way back to 660 BC. Emperor Naruhito, who currently rules the country, is the 126th monarch, and his family has been ruling the region for centuries.
Details of the ruling family and all the Japanese emperors are recorded in several records like the renowned Nihon Shoki. It’s a chronicle written during the eighth century and offers an interesting insight into historical facts and narratives.
It’s also interesting to note that the imperial family of Japan and the emperors, in particular, have historically been viewed as religious figures and deities. A legend links the first Japanese emperor directly to the sun goddess Amaterasu Omikami who is said to have bestowed precious imperial ornaments to her grandson, who passed them on to his descendants, including the first emperor—Emperor Jimmu.
The German Cave-Dwellers’ of Harz Mountains, Germany
This fascinating bloodline takes us years back—well into Bronze Age. And interestingly, we know its starting and ending point—since it’s almost the same spot, which isn’t common for most bloodlines that span many centuries.
These German cave-dwellers left behind some well-preserved remains in a cavern known as the Lichtenstein Cave, near Harz Mountains in the Lower Saxony region of Germany. Experts that have studied this bloodline since it was discovered in 1993 first deduced that the remains of the 9 females and 14 males found in this cavern were all related. But a fascinating discovery came a bit later when DNA testing was conducted on the bones of the Bronze Age Germans and compared with the area’s current residents.
The researchers discovered that the DNA belonging to the ancient Germans was unique and had some very particular area-specific genetic markers. Moreover, it was an exact match to the DNA samples collected from 2 of the local residents (a total of 300 were part of the study). While it is not possible to create the complete family tree for this bloodline which spans at least 3000 years, it’s fascinating to know its starting and ending point and discover that both are in such close proximity to each other.
Have you ever wondered where your bloodline started and how far you are from your first ancestors’ physical location? Well, we could help you get some answers. At Davis DNA And Family Research, we offer traditional genealogy services, as well as genetic genealogy services. Let’s dig deeper!
And you can also look forward to our third and final blog of this series!