Are you a Viking descendant?

On many Facebook groups you will see people claiming to be descendants of “The Vikings”.

The definition of a Viking is a bit defuse. In the viking age a Viking was a word that meant the same as Pirat does today. In popular books, they may also use the word viking to denote anyone of Scandinavian culture in the viking age, but that doesn’t really fit with the original meaning of the word.

But who can claim to be the descendant of Vikings?

The funny thing is that everyone with recent European ancestors and many others in the world is a descendant of someone of Scandinavian Culture doing piracy in the viking age.

When you go back to the viking age, we all have many more ancestors than lived in the world at that time if they were all different people. You cant have more ancestors than lived at the time, so many of them are the same people, you just reach them in different paths in the genealogical table.

I have looked at Scott Hershbergers article “Humans Are All More Closely Related Than We Commonly Think” from Scientific America. 

He define what he calls “The Genetic Isopoint” this way:

Go back a bit further, and you reach a date when our family trees share not just one ancestor in common but every ancestor in common. At this date, called the genetic isopoint,” 

So when we reach the time of the Genetic Isopoint, all people who have descendants today, are an ancestor of all people. For the whole world Hershberger has calculated the Genetic Isotope to the Bronze Age or early Iron Age. So everyone in the world is a descendant of all those people of the Bronze age that have descendants today.  he says: “our most recent common ancestor probably lived no earlier than 1400 B.C. and possibly as recently as A.D. 55.”

When we look at people of recent European descent, the Genetic Isotope is much later. He says: “In fact, even more recent than the global genetic isopoint is the one for people with recent European ancestry. Researchers using genomic data place the latter date around A.D. 1000.

And since the viking age ended some time in the 11th century (be it 1066, 1050, 1100 or other years suggested), then everyone is a descendant of someone doing piracy in the Viking Age. So we are all descendants of Vikings, Farmers, Carpenters and so on. Even all the kings and Jarls of the period.

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