Researchers collect DNA from men with possible links to York’s Viking past

Shaun Collinge, of The Maltings pub in York, who is believed to be descended from the Vikings

Shaun Collinge, of The Maltings pub in York, who is believed to be descended from the Vikings

First published in News by , Court reporter

MEN with Viking surnames filled the meeting room of New Earswick Folk Hall and queued to help research into the ethnic origins of the British people.

Academics were collecting DNA from men with Viking names to see if they are directly descended from the Scandanavian traders and seaman who once ruled York and Yorkshire.

It was the first of four gatherings across northern England and followed a public appeal for people with Viking surnames to come forward.

The project will feature in a future BBC eight-part documentary series on the history of ordinary British people – the Great British Story – and BBC photographers were at the event.

The head of project, geneticist Turi King, of the University of Leicester, said of the York meeting at the weekend: “It has been great. They are quite rare surnames and we have had 200 responses.”

More than 60 people attended, but only one representative from each surname could give DNA. She left with nearly 50 samples. Many of those attending had done their own family research or were interested in the origins of names.

Among those at the meeting were two Addymans, including the retired director of York Archaeological Trust, Peter Addyman, who said it was a “wonderful initiative”, and a member of the only Postlethwaite family in York – Stephen Postlethwaite. The name originates in Lancashire, though some ancestors moved to Newcastle and Barrow, possibly to work in the shipyards.

The surname Collinge also appears on the list, which was a shock for Shaun Collinge, landlord of York pub, The Maltings in Tanner’s Moat.

“You’re joking,” he exclaimed, when The Press broke the news. “I always thought I was a Celt. I always believed our family came from Ireland.

“I’ll definitely put my name forward. I’m game for a laugh.”

Asked whether he thought he shared any resemblance with Vikings, he said: “I’ve never been frightened of fighting… and I am pretty determined.”

Peter Hirst, of Wakefield, said: “I quite like to think of myself as Viking.” He said it was good to highlight the Scandanavian influence in Britain, instead of the French or American influence.

“There is a lot of interest in who we are – you see what is happening in Scotland. I would prefer an independent Yorkshire with a strong Viking influence.”

Jayne Carroll, a linguist of the University of Nottingham, gave a talk on the origins of names and showed the small geographical areas where some of the men’s surnames were to be found historically.

Comments (11)

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9:51am Mon 23 Jan 12

dsom73 says...

Women don't pass on surnames but do pass on DNA, so surnames might not be the best marker to go by.

jus' sayin' is all...
Women don't pass on surnames but do pass on DNA, so surnames might not be the best marker to go by. jus' sayin' is all... dsom73
  • Score: 0

10:52am Mon 23 Jan 12

Sillybillies says...

Women don't pass on surnames but do pass on DNA, so surnames might not be the best marker to go by.

Which is quite correct and screws up the premise upon the research is based. Does anyone still doubt the extent to which university education and research has been dumbed down?
[quote]Women don't pass on surnames but do pass on DNA, so surnames might not be the best marker to go by.[/quote] Which is quite correct and screws up the premise upon the research is based. Does anyone still doubt the extent to which university education and research has been dumbed down? Sillybillies
  • Score: 0

11:22am Mon 23 Jan 12

Garrowby Turnoff says...

According to the Eve hypothesis it suggests that all human DNA can be traced back to a single black female. This "Eve" would have lived in Africa about 200,000 years ago.

I wonder how many spare ribs she had?
According to the Eve hypothesis it suggests that all human DNA can be traced back to a single black female. This "Eve" would have lived in Africa about 200,000 years ago. I wonder how many spare ribs she had? Garrowby Turnoff
  • Score: 0

12:29pm Mon 23 Jan 12

Oaklands Resident says...

What next?
Eric Bloodaxe charged with murder, rape and pillage?
What next? Eric Bloodaxe charged with murder, rape and pillage? Oaklands Resident
  • Score: 0

1:08pm Mon 23 Jan 12

bloodaxe says...

Sillybillies wrote:
Women don't pass on surnames but do pass on DNA, so surnames might not be the best marker to go by.

Which is quite correct and screws up the premise upon the research is based. Does anyone still doubt the extent to which university education and research has been dumbed down?
You didn' t attend the survey. I did. Had you done so you would have known that there is a distinct correlation between Y chromosome and placename derived surnames as an indicator of likely Viking DNA. It's the DNA which is the indicator, not the name. The Press as usual skewed their report. The names are not Viking but Old English. As for dumbing-down, you're clearly an expert in that area.
[quote][p][bold]Sillybillies[/bold] wrote: [quote]Women don't pass on surnames but do pass on DNA, so surnames might not be the best marker to go by.[/quote] Which is quite correct and screws up the premise upon the research is based. Does anyone still doubt the extent to which university education and research has been dumbed down?[/p][/quote]You didn' t attend the survey. I did. Had you done so you would have known that there is a distinct correlation between Y chromosome and placename derived surnames as an indicator of likely Viking DNA. It's the DNA which is the indicator, not the name. The Press as usual skewed their report. The names are not Viking but Old English. As for dumbing-down, you're clearly an expert in that area. bloodaxe
  • Score: -1

1:45pm Mon 23 Jan 12

24.2.1969bestcitygoalever... says...

A line-up would suffice.
A line-up would suffice. 24.2.1969bestcitygoalever...
  • Score: 0

2:32pm Mon 23 Jan 12

24.2.1969bestcitygoalever... says...

... long blond beard and thick moustache, menacing headgear, a longboat, a surplus of runes, attitude.
... long blond beard and thick moustache, menacing headgear, a longboat, a surplus of runes, attitude. 24.2.1969bestcitygoalever...
  • Score: 0

3:12pm Mon 23 Jan 12

lioncub says...

Garrowby Turnoff wrote:
According to the Eve hypothesis it suggests that all human DNA can be traced back to a single black female. This "Eve" would have lived in Africa about 200,000 years ago. I wonder how many spare ribs she had?
So she's my great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great,
Grand Mother? I've never had a Birthday card from her!
[quote][p][bold]Garrowby Turnoff[/bold] wrote: According to the Eve hypothesis it suggests that all human DNA can be traced back to a single black female. This "Eve" would have lived in Africa about 200,000 years ago. I wonder how many spare ribs she had?[/p][/quote]So she's my great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, Grand Mother? I've never had a Birthday card from her! lioncub
  • Score: 0

5:18pm Mon 23 Jan 12

Viqueen says...

True Vikings know how to spell 'Scandinavian'. :-(
True Vikings know how to spell 'Scandinavian'. :-( Viqueen
  • Score: 0

7:17pm Mon 23 Jan 12

24.2.1969bestcitygoalever... says...

... with a 'k'?
... with a 'k'? 24.2.1969bestcitygoalever...
  • Score: 0

9:59pm Sun 29 Jan 12

John844 says...

Nice to believe in fairy tales as the out of africa theory but it has already been proven to be just that: a fairy tale. http://john844.org/a
ncient-egyptian-hair


Viking did control large portions of Britain, your current law was started and is commonly referred to as Dane Law.
Nice to believe in fairy tales as the out of africa theory but it has already been proven to be just that: a fairy tale. http://john844.org/a ncient-egyptian-hair Viking did control large portions of Britain, your current law was started and is commonly referred to as Dane Law. John844
  • Score: 0

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