Sunday, July 18, 2010

Ticino (Switzerland)

In ancient times, the area of what is today Ticino was settled by the Lepontii, a Celtic tribe. Later, probably around the rule of Augustus, it became part of the Roman Empire. After the fall of the Western Empire, was ruled by the Ostrogoths, the Lombards and the Franks. Around 1100 it was the centre of struggle between the free communes of Milan and Como: in the 14th century it was definitively acquired by the Visconti, Dukes of Milan. In the fifteenth century the Swiss Confederates conquered the valleys south of the Alps in three separate conquests.

Even though Italian is the official language of Ticino, West Lombard dialects are the vernacular language of the area.

  • Sample :

Full scale

  • Brief anthropological analysis :

- Type 1 : Intermediate complexion, leptomorphic, narrow face, long and straight high-rooted nose that can get convex, close set eyes, large jaw, pointy chin
~ Dinaromorphic Nordo-Mediterranean

That is a well identified pan-Italian type. Yet most individuals rather fall in a lighter - Nordoid - category as far as hair/eye color is concerned. Those individuals are North Italian-looking (aqua blue eyes, ...) and can show puffy features. Such phenotypes are quite rare in other parts of Switzerland and the contrast with neighbouring Upper Wallis is somehow rather important.

- Type 2 :
Intermediate complexion, brachymorphic, stocky face, little low-rooted nose that can get snub-tipped, wide set eyes
~ Alpinoid/Subnordid

Once more, a very classical type abundantly found throughout the Italian peninsula to which Ticino is an extremity. This type is not as prevailing as in western Alpine valleys though, at least amongst men.

  • Final morphotypes :

1 comment:

  1. The narrowfacedness of the vast majority of the sample suggest Italian affinity rather than Germanic (their immediate neighbours), however they are more in the Nordic range, much in the line of the longfaced people you have sampled so much around the North Sea and even at the Loire. So I'd say Italo-Nordic rather than Nordo-Mediterranean. However I don't know if they are brachicephalic (lots of longfaced people are and it should be more common in Italy than further West). In that case they should be classed as pure Dinarid. But the looks on their faces does not suggest me that, as they do have a Western affinity, rather than Balcanic.

    Some are out of the main group. For instance:

    - c1 (maybe is the expression but he suggests me of more typically Italian or even Eastern European Jewish looks)
    - c4 is what I'd call "Mediterranean" (in my own variant of the concept, that is looking archetypally Aegean or non-European Mediterranean)
    - d3, d4, d5 and d7 make me think of the Balcans (different areas or subgroups maybe)

    BI 6 or more.


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