Saturday, March 12, 2011

Huesca : Aragon (Spain)

Huesca's pre-Roman Iberian name was Bolskan. It was the capital of the Ilergetes, on the road from Tarraco (modern Tarragona) and Ilerda (modern Lleida) to Caesaraugusta (modern Zaragoza). The ethnic character of the area is rather dubious (Iberian or Basque ?) but it is a known fact a form of the Basque language might have been spoken up to the 1400s as proved by the infamous interdiction of 1349 : "quien faulare en basquenç pague por coto XXX sol...". Placenames undoubtedly show identified roots : Biscarrués, Gurrea, Loarre, ...

  • Sample :

Full scale

  • Brief anthropological analysis :

- Type 1 : Intermediate complexion (from blonde to dark hair, grey/black eyes, rather pale skin on average, ...), leptomorphic, long face (particularly on males), long and convex nose rather parallel to the face, close-set eyes, pointy chin, large jaw
~ Dinaricized Atlanto-Mediterranean

As expected, these individuals seem to show obvious Basque-related features (a convex nose, a triangular face, high cheekbones, ...) while other individuals are more generic though still in the dinaromorphic spectrum which is the Pyrenean norm. More robust individuals and brachymorphic individuals are to be found and are rather stereotypically "North Aragonese"-looking.

Yet, much more interestingly perhaps, Huesca seems to exhibit Mediterranoid phenotypes which tend towards Catalan types and which are characterized by less impressive secondary features (rather little nose, brachymorphism, puffier features, ...).

Such types can eventually get more "extreme" thus showing very original features which I have yet to properly localize (full lips, puffy nose, strong eyebrows, ...) but that I somehow assimilate with Catalonia and neighbouring areas.

- Type 2 : Intermediate complexion (rather dark hair, light eyes, ...), brachymorphic, reduced and "puffy" features, square-box head, little and puffy nose, strong jaw, rather distanced and somehow chinky eyes
~ Alpinoid

Striking Alpinoid types, abundantly found South of the Ebro river, are rather rare and never archetypal.

  • Morphotypes finaux / Final morphotypes :

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Oriente : Asturias (Spain)

Asturias has been occupied by humans since the Lower Paleolithic era, and during the Upper Paleolithic was characterized by cave paintings in the eastern part of the area. In the Mesolithic period, a native culture developed, that of the Asturiense, and later, with the introduction of the Bronze Age, megaliths and tumuli were constructed. In the Iron Age, the territory came under the cultural influence of the Celts; the local Celtic peoples, known as the Astures, were composed of tribes such as the Luggones, the Pesicos, and others, who populated the entire area with castros (fortified hill-towns).

In light blue

  • Sample :

Full scale

  • Brief anthropological analysis :

- Type 1 : Intermediate complexion (dark hair, ... but light eyes are frequent), leptomorphic, long face (particularly on males), straight or convex nose, rather close-set eyes, pointy chin, large jaw
~ (Dinaricized) Atlanto-Mediterranean

A pan-Iberian type, these individuals nevertheless show affinities with NW Iberia (Galicia, North Portugal, ...) when it comes to secondary features such as the eye region (rather "slanted" eyes on some individuals, big eyebrows, ...) or the general aspect of the face (strong "horsy" features commonly found in Portugal for instance).

- Type 2 : Intermediate complexion (from dark to chestnut hair, from black to green/blue eyes, ...), more or less brachymorphic, reduced and "puffy" features, in some cases high-headed, rather little nose (on males at least), strong jaw, close-set eyes
~ Alpino-Mediterranean

Such types have been abundantly described by classical anthropological literature : they dominate the whole Atlantic coast from Galicia to Western Cantabria (about Santander, phenotypes get more "Vascoid"). Let's notice a common secondary feature : eyes seem to be somehow "circled" in Asturias. More elongated variants can be found, yet still exihibiting those peculiar "puffy" features associated with the NW corner of Iberia.

  • Final morphotypes :