The Persian people are one of the many diverse ancient peoples from the extended Iranian (Irano-Indo-European) families, who as roamer-gatherer nomads spread out from central Asia to northern India, the Caucasus, Asia Minor, and the Persian Plateau between the Caspian Sea and the Persian Gulf since at least the Neolithic Period (late Stone Age of 10, 000 years ago). However, this should not preclude the strong possibility of earlier indigenous peoples in the above vast region, as evident by their stone tools, fossils, and early paintings or carvings amid the Paleolithic (35,000 BCE-10,000 BCE) and Mesolithic (10,000-8000 BCE) periods.
The Iranians albeit Persians, have exchanged genetic haplogroups, alleles and biomarkers with myriad other ethnically related peoples. Thus the broader Iranian genetic hereditary that prominently includes Persian is heterogeneously complex and ethnically diverse today; nonetheless, Persian or Iranian must not be misconstrued as a superior race or egocentric ethnicity even by a long stretch of the wildest imagination. It is noteworthy to cite the Iranian genetic pool having borrowed from, and given back to many other pedigrees, is traceable with statistical significance (~x>1%) in more than half the human populations (currently up to four billion) worldwide today.
There has been much debate about the origin and “pure racial” identity of Persians albeit even more aptly Iranians as a whole. Iranians or their early ancestors have roamed or settled from as far back as 35,000 years ago on the current Iranian plateau and its surrounding region of central and west Asia, the Caucasus, Eastern Mesopotamia, and Asia Minor and along the Persian Gulf. Early Iranians as the direct descendants of Sakas and Scythians have over an extended period moved south and west from today’s central Asia in several rounds.
In fact, retro-genetic archelogy places the origin of all today’s non-African peoples to the Mitochondrion Y-Haplogroup DNA of a single male residing in Uzbekistan (Samarghand and Bukhara) of 45,000 years ago. This area of south Siberian Urals is coincidentally the same region where the archaic Denisovan Hominins now extinct, resided as well. Denisovans were close cousins to extinct Neanderthals whose genetic remnants are still present for up to a few percents amongst Europeans. What is most perplexing is that the historical Sakas and Iranians (Persians) have no or extremely insignificant Neanderthal genetic traits.
The “Aryan” tribes of Sakas and Scythians including in particular the Iranian prehistoric indigenous tribes moved south and west from today’s Central Asia. Then in the third millennium BCE, the Medians, Persians and Parthians arrived on the Iranian plateau last. There remains since a common Persian family of languages and as derived from an earlier proto-Irano-Indo-European language etymologically speaking, that has since at least 10,000 years ago laid the lingual franca foundation for a unique way of life anchored on Persian literati and ethos, gender and ethnic equality, chivalry and ethics, truth and genuineness, and tranquil harmony with and respect for Mother Earth. In fact, the term Aryans does not refer to a single racial or ethnic identity let alone to bogus implication of an egotistical superiority and fascist ideological ulterior motives and as abused by the third Reich. Aryanism rather more aptly refers to Iranians and north Indian cultural “noble” characters, thoughts, words, deeds and traits, cited above (source).
According to the life philosophy of Iranian Aryans, IRAN from AeR, from the early Pahlavi Avestan language, and as in Aerland=Irelnad in Old Gaelic, means the land of Aryans/gate of civilizations. Iranians settled in the Persiate world, strengthening body and spirit through legends and mythologies, human-hood and empathy, javelin and arrow throwing, sportsmanship, horseback riding, reaching a balance between family and community, chess and backgammon playing, reasons, rationale and logic, truth on facts, and the development of crafts and skills toward the betterment of human civilizations as a whole, has served as the impetus since the early Neolithic era of over 10,000 years ago. There are multiple archeological sites and ample artifacts in museums worldwide from western Zagros region, Lake Rezaieh zone, the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus regions and central Asia, Bactria/Arianna (today’s Afghanistan), Burnt City (Share Soukhteh), and Teppe Sialk Kashan from at least 15-20,000 years ago that support the existence of rich cultural and technological breakthroughs of Iranians/Persians and their indigenous brethren.
Thus, not only today’s territory of Iran in its smallest size but unchanged since 150 years ago, but more importantly the greater historical Iran that spanned from China and India to Eastern Europe, the Caucuses and North Africa, has served as the crossword of early humans and the fertile grounds for clashes and intermingling amongst tribes, families and civilizations. Accordingly, the culture and genetic makeups of Iranians in the Persianate world, is rather heterogeneously complex. To reiterate, it is mythology, legends, ethos, music, paintings, stories, poetry and prose, psyche, foods, drinks, desserts, festivals, fruits and vegetables, etc. that binds the Persiante world together and not a single distinct homogeneous “non-existent” genetic superiority!
Professor Ilber Ortayli Highlights Links between Turkic and Iranian Civilizations. He is among a large number of non-Iranians scholars-from Herodotus and Xenophon, and Harvard professors as Arthur Pope and Richard Frye who have credited Iranians with advancing human civilization. It is established that Persian language has served toward the evolution of Altaic Turkish monotone language by its borrowing up to 40% Persian words and syntax. Professor Ortayli further recognizes the bureaucratic and administrative roles (Divansalari) of Iranians in the Ottoman governance, while the army not only in Turkey but also in Russia and its vassals, India and Afghanistan or IRAN since the Seljuk was headed and trooped by the Turks, the Tatars or the Cossacks. He traces the school of Athens to Persians and Partians/Elamites of eastern Mesopotamia, as well crediting the Muslim Moors and Jews that also included many Iranian scholars in Andalusia for laying the Greek philosophy for Europe. By the same token, Iranians provided the societal and literati foundations for Turkey, as well as for the Islamic Caliphates of Baghdad, Damascus, Jerusalem, Cairo, Alhambra and Granada, and India.
Although amongst investigations to decode the genetic makeup of diverse peoples worldwide, Iranians and Persians have only found recent prominence, the vast genetic information discovered for Iranians is startlingly humbling. The proliferation of scientific manuscripts supports the fact while all people of the above regions in Iran and the neighboring countries may each possess a few specific genetic biomarker alleles of their own, nonetheless, their overall genetic mapping is rather heterogeneously identical (mainly west Asian/Iran and Middle Eastern/ Mesopotamian). The Iranians have given to and taken from others bits and pieces of genetic hereditary information. The Iranian genetic makeup is explained in reading just a couple of findings and its many linked citations therein. These new findings again demonstrate that while their original genomics goes back to millennia, it has footprints from the Samis (Judaic/Arabs) of Mesopotamia and Asiatic/Mongolian/Turkics of Altaic mountains peoples among other neighbors or the passersby hunter-gatherer-forager who wandered and roamed through this historic region.
Further reading or watching sources:
- Complete Mitochondrial DNA diversity in Iranians https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3828245/
- Persian Language Family https://melliun.org/iran/229974
- Denisovan Hominids https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denisovan
- Iranian Couple’s DNA: Are we “Persian”? https://youtu.be/BgNA79RXKKg
- Iranian DNA Project https://www.familytreedna.com/groups/iranian-y-dna/about/background
- Origin of European Y-DNA and Mt-Haplogroups https://www.eupedia.com/europe/origins_haplogroups_europe.shtml#HV
- Iranian or Persian. What’s the difference? https://www.thoughtco.com/is-it-iranian-or-persian-3555178
- Iranian Peoples https://www.cs.mcgill.ca/~rwest/wikispeedia/wpcd/wp/i/Iranian_peoples.htm
- Are Persian people Caucasian? https://www.quora.com/Are-Persian-people-considered-to-be-Caucasian
- Persian People https://www.britannica.com/topic/Persian
- Y-DNA Haplogroups by Ethnicity https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3828245/
- Which haplogroup are Persian genetics the most? https://www.quora.com/Which-haplogroup-represents-Persian-genetics-the-most
- My 23 and Me DNA result. I am an Iranian Viking! https://youtu.be/sRKUvQDdzWU
- Iranian Persian DNA results https://www.reddit.com/r/AncestryDNA/comments/9h3jy2/iranian_persian_updated_results/
- Got my Iranian DNA result https://www.reddit.com/r/iran/comments/6krbsr/got_my_iranian_dna_results/
- Ancestry DNA Test (Khuzestan) https://youtu.be/RdnZzNaVxEg
- My Mom’s DNA test results: western (Iran) and southwest Asia https://youtu.be/l-ixlxmRu9M
- Iranian’s couple DNA test results: are we Persian? https://youtu.be/BgNA79RXKKg