Genomic Data and Longobard History

Arts Building Lecture Theatre 5
Monday 24 April 2017 (17:00-19:00)

Institute of Advanced Studies Distinguished Visiting Fellow Professor Patrick J Geary is one of the leading authorities on both medieval ethnicity and the uses of the medieval past in the classic age of European nationalism. Both of these interests are combined in his current, major multidisciplinary project, that studies the migration of European societies north and south of the Alps through the analysis of ancient DNA in Longobard cemeteries in Hungary and in Italy. Professor Geary has assembled historians, physical anthropologists, archaeologists and genome scientists, to analyze the population movements revealed through traces of historic DNA found in late antique cemetery sites. His lecture will present some of his intermediate findings, and address what historic genome data, and current techniques in its analysis can and, importantly can’t, say about a period much revisited by historians erroneously and often dangerously seeking there the roots of their own nation states.