2020-07-16 04:45:58 UTC
A group of Hungarian researchers have reported the Y chromosome sequence of Bela III of Hungary (I cannot vouch for the skeleton identification). He and another unidentified skeleton originally from the royal basilica are reported to have had a Y in the R group with a previously unknown SNP, which they name R-ARP (for Arpad). Contrary to legends of Hun origin, it appears to trace to the 4000-year-old Iranian-speaking populations of the '-stans' (specifically Pashtun, Tajik, Uzbek, and Turkmen), but by way of Bashkortostan, between the Urals and the Volga (or at least R-ARP is closest to one found among the Bashkirs, with a hypothetical split in the first centuries AD). A companion study of medieval graves from the Magyar homeland revealed continuity of a different haplotype, from the N group common among populations speaking the Finno-Ugric language family to which Hungarian belongs, and also found among the Bashkirs. The authors suggest this hints at the Arpads arising out of a mixed Finno-Ugric/proto-Iranian population, to which I would add an alternative, that they represented a non-native proto-Iranian elite ruling over the Finno-Ugric Magyars.
(As an aside, they also found a 'descendant' haplotype in Serbia - R-ARP with niine additional SNPs, in a man thus likely descended in the male line from the Arpads of Bela's period, give or take a 100 years or so.)