Ainu belongs to Mongoloid
Ainu belongs to Mongoloid
once again
orig: 2000/08/05

I keep receiving mails in which readers expressed difficulties in agreeing to the captioned theme, Ainu belongs to Mongoloid. The relative discussions I have presented in this sites are mostly my quotations or excerpts, as translated by me, of well-recognized academic researchers.

Recently, Japan's national broadcasting corporation, NHK, presented a TV program for the generals, in which the latest findings of anthropology were given. The broadcasting corporation published a book in parallel with the TV program, unfortunately in Japanese.

I'll quote and translate a paragraph from the book, which would be the most critical to the issue.

Quote (translation by me)(at page 34): in [ ] my supplementation:

[As for the origin of Ainu people], in Meiji era [1868-1912], the white-origin theory was proposed. Even researchers of blood types, finger prints and Ainu languages supported the theory. The white-origin theory was finally discarded in the 1960's through analysis of head bones, tooth shapes and genes.


Mitochondria DNA

In the NHK publication, Dr. Satoshi Horai's research into mitochondria DNA is presented in detail. One section of the mitochondria DNA, called D-loop, consists of 482 characters. Out of the number, 190 characters were available throughout samples. The sample consists of 98 Asians, 10 Africans, 20 Europeans (so far, all samples are from live bodies), 3 Jomon bone sets from Hokkaido (ca. 3000 years ago), two Jomon bone sets from Saitama (ca. 6000 years ago) and 6 Ainu bones (say, 200 years ago).

His findings included:

No Europeans belonged to a cluster (group) which Ainu were found positioned.
The Europeans did share clusters with Africans, Asians, Japanese and one Jomon.
The Ainus did share clusters with Japanese, an Asian and 4 Jomons.
If one wishes to be very careful, one Jomon was found to share a cluster with two Japanese and one European. Clarification of this meaning will be necessary, given that Jomon is close to Ainu.
Similarly, one African was found very close to one Japanese. This should also be clarified, what it means.
Two Ainus, three Jomons, one Malaysians and 13 Japanese were found to share an identical 190-character set.

Gene DNA Another DNA researcher, Keiichi OMOTO, says as follows.

Classic anthropology said Ainu was different from Japanese and many anthropologists said Ainu belonged to the group of white people. However, this theory has been rejected by recent molecular anthropology and others. (end of quote: Original in Japanese: Translation by me.)

I'd let you think about these, rather than solidify an unfounded perception impressed by appearances which would be dangerously subjective.

Back to English Index
Visit "Selected Ainu Words"
I intend to continue this kind of writing, as audiences hopefully grow. Your kind comments from the mail-form will highly encourage the writer. Thank you.