Geneticists at the Johns Hopkins University announced Monday that an estimated seven million people worldwide carry a distinctive genetic marker linking them to a single smooth-talking common ancestor.
According to the study, which analyzed blood samples from 4,000 participants in 17 countries, the lineage appears to have originated with a highly virile ninth-century Welsh nobleman known as Gwilym of Many Conquests.
“This is one of the largest diasporas known to have descended from a single progenitor,” said head researcher Lawrence Ghilcrest, adding that DNA evidence now corroborates stories about the Welshman that historians once dismissed as myth. “To have propagated his genetic material so effectively, and across so much territory, we can only infer Gwilym was quite the charmer.”
“As the poets often wrote, he got ‘more arse than a chamber pot,’” Ghilcrest added.
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