Re: Sephardi vs. Ashkenazi #dna

Judy Simon

On 2008.04.29, Joel Bresler <> wrote:

My maternal family has a Sephardic name (CARO) and I'd like to know
if we are of part-Sephardi ancestry. Sephardim did make it to
Poland, so it's by no means out of the question.
If your maternal family had the surname CARO, they were probably

On the other hand, that is **such** a prominent Sephardic name
that it could have been adopted owing to its great lineage.
Anything is possible, but it is not very likely

So my question: is this the sort of question that genetic testing
might be able to answer? I am not trying to prove a relationship
with a particular individual or family.
Yes, genetic testing could provide support for the hypothesis that
your CARO family were Sephardim. Any male in your family who
carries the surname CARO could have his Y-DNA tested. Y-DNA gets
passed along >from father-to-son, just as the surname does, and if
your CARO line is Sephardic, then there is a good chance the Y-DNA
associated with the CARO line will match other descendants of
Sephardim. Even if your male CARO relative does not match another
CARO, there may have been CARO ancestors who changed their surname
to hide >from the Inquisition.

There were CARO descendants who fled the Inquisition to the
Americas; I know there are converso CARO descendants in Puerto Rico
and probably elsewhere in the Caribbean and Mexico too. During the
last few years, many males >from Puerto Rico, Mexico and the
Southwest US who thought they might have a Jewish (Sephardic)
heritage have had their DNA tested to see if their paternal line
originated in the Middle East. Family Tree DNA now has a large
database of converso descendants - males who suspected their
paternal line was Jewish, and have verified it with Y-DNA testing.
Ashkenazim who think they might have a Sephardic heritage can
compare their Y-DNA to this database to see if they have a common
ancestor with a converso descendant.

The Iberian Ashkenaz Y-DNA Project at Family Tree DNA was set up for
Ashkenazi Jews who believe their paternal line might have been
Sephardic. Two thirds of the participants who have had their Y-DNA
tested so far have been able to confirm their Sephardic history. In
some cases, their converso matches even know where in Spain their
ancestors came from!

Your male CARO relative could have his Y-DNA tested through this
project. The JewishGen home page has a link to DNA projects at
Family Tree DNA. To see the Iberian Ashkenaz Y-DNA project, on scroll down to "Projects and Activities" and click
on "Genealogy by Genetics." Then click on the Family Tree DNA
Genealogy by Genetics link on the upper half of the page. Scroll
down to Geographic Projects and click on "Iberian Surnames of
Ashkenaz." This will take you to the website where you can find
out much more about the project.

Please feel free to e-mail me if you need more information.

Judy Simon, co-administrator Iberian Ashkenaz Y-DNA project
New York

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