The Null Device

The first Americans in Europe

A genetic survey in Iceland has found genes characteristic of native North Americans, dating back to the 10th century (or at least before the 18th century, to the eight or so centuries during which Iceland was isolated), suggesting that Native Americans reached Europe five centuries before Columbus reached the Americas.

There are 1 comments on "The first Americans in Europe":

Posted by: Greg Wed Nov 17 10:39:09 2010

This isn't quite the shock rewrite of world history that the Guardian headline suggests. The researchers think the genes descend from an American brought to Iceland by Vikings. It is believed that Vikings were making expeditions to America centuries before Columbus, and established a colony in America around 1100 AD.

I just read in Wikipedia about an interesting new theory of much earlier settlement of north-east America by ancient Europeans - this complements the long-accepted theory of human settlement of America by east Asians crossing the Bering land bridge in the last Ice Age. There are also less well-established theories involving long sea journeys through the Pacific, even including an island-hopping path from Australia through the sub-Antarctic sea.