Haplogroup H2b

After participating in ancestry testing over at 23andme, my DNA results revealed that I belong to haplogroup H2b on my maternal side. H2b is a subclade, or branch of, the more ancient haplogroup H. So, let’s start there and work our way down to H2b.

Haplogroup H (MtDNA)

Haplogroup H is the most common haplogroup in Europe, the Near East, and the Caucasus. Within these areas the frequency is in about 50% of the population. According to the National Institute of Health, this haplogroup probably originated in the Middle East.

According to researchers, if we go back to Eve and follow the mitochondria mutations that define a haplogroup all the way to H2b, this is the order of the changes throughout time:

Timeline from Eve to H2b

Eve > L1 > L3 > N > R > pre-HV > HV > H > H2b

  1. L1: direct descendent of Eve, from Africa. L1 gave rise to all the people alive in the world today
  2. L3: descendent of L1, from Africa and the Mediterranean. L and N are descended from L3 and were the first humans to migrate out of Africa.
  3. N: the haplogroup that lived by the Mediterranean and represents one of the two large family clans that made it out of Africa and populated Europe and Asia.
  4. R: lived in South Asia (Near East). She is a direct descendant of haplogroup N, and her descendants are the founding peoples of many European lineages.
  5. PreHV or R0: arose in the Middle East and today is found mostly in the Near East and Arabia. This group is a direct descendant of haplogroup R.
  6. HV: found throughout Southeastern Europe and West Asia (Iran, Turkey, Caucasus Mountains). Started from a female descendant of R0 who lived between West and Central Asia.
  7. H: the dominant mtDNA haplogroup in Western Europe. Oxford Ancestors say that the female who started the H haplogroup was born in South-Central France. The highest frequencies of this haplogroup can currently be found amongst the Basque people in Northern Spain and Southern France*.Basque - Haplogroup H
  8. H2: The H2 branch of haplogroup H originated in the Near East about 26,000 years ago, when the Ice Age covered much of Eurasia with a thick layer of ice that rendered most of Europe uninhabitable.When the climate warmed about 15,000 years ago, opening the continent to habitation for the first time in millennia, people carried the H2 haplogroup from the Near East as far as the Basque region of northern Spain. It is surprisingly common in Sweden, where up to 11% of southern Swedes carry H2. The H2 haplogroup can still be found at low levels among the populations of Saudi Arabia, Daghestan and other Near Eastern countries.
  9. H2b: the first appearance of H2 in ancient remains was found in the village of Únětice, located in the Central Czech Republic, northwest of Prague.

* Another interesting tidbit… my blood type is O-, the highest percentages of O negative blood type are among the Basque.

Famous or Well-known People From Haplogroup H

  • Luke the Evangelist (the author of the book of Luke in the Bible)
  • Marie Antoinette
  • Louis the VII
  • Russian royal family, the Romanov’s.
  • Sweyn II Estridsson, King of Denmark.
  • Queen Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria)
  • Henrietta Maria of France
  • Charles II of England
  • James II of England
  • William III of England
  • Edward VII of England
  • Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh
  • Sigrid the Haughty of Denmark
  • Canute the Great of Denmark
  • Olof Skötkonung of Sweden
  • Christina of Sweden
  • Margaret of Connaught of Sweden
  • Louise Mountbatten of Sweden
  • Maximilian II of Habsburg
  • Ferdinand II of Habsburg
  • Leopold I of Habsburg
  • Leopold II of Habsburg
  • Maria Theresa of Austria
  • Joseph II of Austria
  • Ferdinand I of Austria
  • Charles I of Austria
  • Boleslaus II the Pious of Bohemia
  • Anne of Bohemia and Hungary (H2- 1503-1547)
  • Ferdinand IV of Bohemia and Hungary
  • Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Bevern (Prussia)
  • Frederick William II of Prussia
  • Victoria of Prussia
  • Wilhelm II of Germany
  • Frederick Augustus II of Saxony
  • John I of Saxony
  • Leopold I of the Belgians
  • Marie-Louise of France
  • Marie de’ Medici of France
  • Louis XIII of France
  • Maria Theresa of Spain
  • Louis, Dauphin of France
  • Napoleon I, Emperor of France
  • Marie Louise of Austria
  • Maria Amalia of the Two Sicilies
  • Victor Emmanuel II of Italy
  • Archduchess Joanna of Austria
  • Charles Emmanuel III of Sardinia
  • Most of the Kings and Queens of Spain
  • Boleslaw I Chrobry of Poland
  • Peter II of Russia
  • Dr.Oz
  • Warren Buffett

According to my DNA, I have at least one common maternal ancestor with all of these people. I think that’s pretty neat!


Caucasus Mountain Area:

About the Author


Curious about historical events, people and places - I love to learn and share the stories I find with others.

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