The Irishmen and the Scot are not Celts

Genetic analyses reveal that the current nations? Celts' descend, in fact from the Spaniards and the Portuguese.

09/16/2004 - The popular belief is that the inhabitants of Ireland and Scotland descend from the Celts, alpine people originating in an area located at the east of current France, in the south of Germany. They would have dispersed towards the west of Europe to reach the Atlantic islands 2500 years ago. This idea is supported by the fact that the Celtic languages, mainly spoken today in the Islands, were largely used in Central and Western Europe before the fall of the Roman Empire.

But recent genetic tests challenge this assumption. The DNA of Europeans of all nationalities was analyzed by geneticists at the Trinity College of Dublin and the family ties between various groups were estimated. Scottish and Irish have more genetic affinities with the Spanish and the Portuguese than with any other European group. One even manages to suggest a date of separation of the two groups goes back approximately 6000 years, that is to say, to the end of the glacial era. The people of the Iberian Peninsula would thus have been in close contact with the British Isles during many centuries, perhaps for 3000 years.

Thereafter, the true Celts of Central Europe probably reached the islands, but on their arrival, people from Spain had already been there for a long time. The Celts left their culture since it is omnipresent there, but not their genes.

This work, which appeared in the American Newspaper of Human Genetics, also shows a strong relationship of the islanders with the Basques, who are not wholly Celtic. The inhabitants of areas traditionally considered Celts are as strongly related to one to another, the Irishmen having more common points with the Scot than with any other nation. And this similarity continues since the 1600s, when significant migratory waves saw Scots settling in Northern Ireland in search of fertile grounds.

The russet-red hair and freckles, a Spanish legacy?
Received from José-Manuel de Oliveira


An interesting site and special grouping of people!

I was looking up some names on the web of old accomplished friends and, accidentally, hit upon this site only to discover with great delight and curiosity a listi and special groupng of people I know on a personal level. It might not have been entirely by accident that I found the site that I found, though.

It so happens that I too share a Portuguese background with them. I am, however, secondary school teacher in Toronto, a published poet, Ode to Tio Caliço and Tia Dores (1997), and an active member of the League of Canadian poets.

May your webite continue to blossom,

Edith Baguinho, Toronto


I love this web site Mr. Mira you have done a great job I am going to see if I can find your book in the book store my ancestors are from Faial Acores my va va was Maria Luisa Gomes and my voo voo was Antonio Corrieo de Escobar on my mothers side. My dads parents was Rosa Dutra (I don’t know her middle name) and avo was Francisco Silverdo de Escobar. Those last names for my grandmothers are before they were married. Any way I would love to know more about my Portuguese heritage.
Rosa de Escobar


I am writing to inform you of my parents Jose and Eugenia Marques. They were both born in Portugal, my father is from Luso, Mealhada and my mother is from Ilha, Pombal. My father migrated to the USA, to Newark, NJ in 1976 and my mother and I (born In Coimbra) then followed in 1977. I am proud to say that they have achieved the "American dream" to better their lives as well as mine and my younger sister which was born in Newark, NJ.

My parents struggled and work very hard and have accomplished what I happen to believe is a miracle. Coming from 2 poor struggling families they are now proud owners of a very famous Portuguese Restaurant in Newark, NJ. My parents have maintained the Portuguese custom, with all the traditional dishes and wines. They also have live entertainment Every weekend. During the months of October - April we keep the traditional alive with our famous "Fado".

This traditional Portuguese restaurant is located on
570 Market Street
Newark, NJ 07105

Please feel free to contact me if you need any further information.


Carla Marques


You website is amazing. My introduction to Portugal and Portuguese came with my discovery of the story of Jewish Dr Samuel Nunez and his arrival in my hometown on July 11,1733, the same summer Oglethorpe settled Savannah.

To see all of the stories tie together, the Portuguese, Brazilians, the Melungeons. This is fascinating to me.

Muito Obrigado
Alan Sadler


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  • Updated:
    November 18, 2011