Ancient roots confirmed: Paddy is a Jock

Ancient roots confirmed: Paddy is a Jock

When Ireland and Scotland meet in their opening World Cup clash in Yokohama on Sunday fortnight it will be an entirely family affair — at least according to experts in human genetics at Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) and the University of Edinburgh.

The first comprehensive genomic analysis of Scotland has established particularly strong links between Scotland’s south-west, the Hebrides, and clusters of Irish ancestry.

The study compared the genomes of ancient Gaels buried in Iceland to today’s genetic diversity of Britain and Ireland and found that these ancient settlers in Iceland shared the greatest genetic affinity with those on the Western Isles of Scotland and the North-West of Ireland.

They also found that Donegal is the most genetically isolated region of Ireland.

So is a Jock a Paddy or is a Paddy a Jock? That question that will be entirely academic in Yokohama on September 22.

The findings are an apt reminder too, at a moment of deepening division, of our shared past and ancestry with the peoples of these islands and of other European regions.

More in this Section

Dublin is no longer merely a countyDublin is no longer merely a county

#RWC2019: Euphoria and despair will meet in Japan#RWC2019: Euphoria and despair will meet in Japan

Climate Change: How many climate warnings do we need?Climate Change: How many climate warnings do we need?

Jim Daly: A hard career choiceJim Daly: A hard career choice


For an instant supper or lunch, fishcakes can be nourishing, warming and tasty. To complete a balanced meal, all it takes is some stirfried or roasted root vegetables.Taste of the sea: Top 8 fish cakes

My seven-year-old stood tall, whispered “bravery” to herself and stepped into the pitch-black dungeon. I stood there and watched her disappear.Learner Dad: I hate nostalgia, I think it’s mawkish and sentimental

Dr Phil Kieran says head lice is incredibly common among school children and offers practical advice on how to remove the crawlers with easy treatments.Tackling head lice: Easy treatments to remove itchy creepers

Gráinne Healy only started running regularly a few years ago. She’s already completed 50 parkruns. She tells Rowena Walsh what motivates her.Ageing with Attitude: Parkruns and quiet Friday nights

More From The Irish Examiner