Notes by Autumn Light

On Hebrew, English, translation, editing, and more—by Jonathan Orr-Stav

How many generations do I have to go back to find my non-Homo Sapiens ancestors?

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If you’re anything other than purely black African, it may be as recent as forty or fifty thousand years ago, when one of your ancestors was actually a Neanderthal or Denisovan, who interbred with a member of the Homo Sapiens species.

Of all human beings alive today, only indigenous sub-Saharan Africans are pure Homo Sapiens. Everyone else has between 1–4% Neanderthal or Denisovan genes in their DNA—with Europeans and Middle Easterners having the highest percentage. See, for example, Why Am I Neanderthal?

(Originally written in reply to a question at


Author: יונתן אור-סתיו | Jonathan Orr-Stav

Hebrew-English translator, editor, author. מתרגם עברית–אנגלית, עורך באנגלית, וסופר.

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