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The Origin of Kurds
Advances in Anthropology

Hennerbichler, F. (2012). The Origin of Kurds.  Advances in  Anthropology , (Number) 02(2), May 2012, pp. 64-79.

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DOI: 10.4236/aa.2012.22008


Kurds are traditionally regarded as Iranians and of Iranian origin, and therefore as Indo-Europeans, mainly, because they speak Iranian. This hypothesis is largely based on linguistic considerations and was predominantly developed by linguists. In contrast to such believes, newest DNA-research of advanced Human Anthropology indicates, that in earliest traceable origins, forefathers of Kurds were obviously descendants of indigenous (first) Neolithic Northern Fertile Crescent aborigines, geographically mainly from outside and northwest of what is Iran of today in Near East and Eurasia. Oldest ancestral forefathers of Kurds were millennia later linguistically Iranianized in several waves by militarily organized elites of (R1a1) immigrants from Central Asia. These new findings lead to the understanding, that neither were aborigine Northern Fertile Crescent Eurasian Kurds and ancient Old-Iranian speaker (R1a1) immigrants from Asia one and the same people, nor represent the later, R1a1 dominated migrating early Old-Iranian-speaker elites from Asia, oldest traceable ancestors of Kurds. Rather, constitute both historically completely different populations and layers of Kurdish forefathers, each with own distinct genetic, ethnical, linguistic and cultural backgrounds. These new insights indicate first inter-disciplinary findings in co-op- eration with two international leading experts in their disciplines, Iranologist Gernot L. Windfuhr, Ann Arbor, and DNA Genealogist Anatole A. Klyosov, Boston, USA.

New findings:

Available palaeogenetic and linguistic data (in particular ergativity in "isolated" languages like Basque and Sumerian), interpreted in cooperation with Prof. Anatole A. Klyosov, Boston, USA, indicate that R1 ancestors derived from Asia and could have initiated in different clans of descendants (R1a, R1b) both forms of ancient Indo-European (like R1a1 Old-Iranian, including in Kurds; possibly also a disputed "Aryan" in Eurasia/Mitanni), as well as a few (northern origin) "isolated" languages (like R1b Basque, and Sumerian, but not "South-Isolates" like Elamite).


Prof. Dr. Anton Perdih, Ljubljana University (, suggested two more hints for possible explanations of ancient IE terms out of Slavic, commenting:
"... the name Gorani (Slavic meaning: People living in the mountains) as well as Zagros (possibly corrupted Za gorami - beyond the mountains). I would suggest that you have them in mind in your future research."
Prof. Perdih also  recommended further clarification on disputed I-M170 in Eurasia, adding: "As well as that when additional data on Y-Chromosome haplogroup I in Near East become available, to check whether they are "young" due to the bottleneck effects suffered there by their predecessors or whether they are "young" due to their late arrival there."
Source: Mail conversation June 25 - July 2, 2012


Anatole Klyosov confirmed in AA, 2012, 2(2), 76 his explanation attempt for Zaludi out of Russian as "from far away people": Zaludi: meaning in Russian: „Beyond people“, = geographically: It is „far away, beyond where people live“. „Za“ = beyond, „ludi“ people. This would support an IE origin of the term on ancient Mitanni soil in Eurasia.

As for I-M170 in Eurasia, see AA, 2012, 2(2), 67, where Klyosov questions published data for "I" by Naidze [et al.] and points out, that earlier data by Nasidze [et al.] on "I" in the Caucasus and in Iran have not been confirmed. There are very few "I" outside of Europe, and some "I" in the Middle East, but their haplotypes are identical to, e.g., the Scandinavians, and they are "young". This means that they are "tourists" there, and of course, there always can be some iso- lated "I" (or anything else) as "tourists" again, according to AA Klyosov.

Further research pending.

Last updated 22 July 2012

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