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Does Aaron’s Bloodline Spring From Irish Royalty?


By James Donahue

February 2006


A team of scientists from Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, has discovered that as many as one in 12 Irish men could be direct descendants from a Fifth Century warlord who ruled the most powerful dynasty of ancient Ireland.


This ancient king was known as Niall of the Nine Hostages, a powerful Fourth Century rebel who was considered a barbarian invader by what was then a dying Roman Empire.


It was said that Niall made a career leading raids on the outskirts of the empire and actually captured nine hostages from the European mainland and Britain. He was thought to have established a Gaelic kingdom in north Wales and drove the Britons out of Devon and Cornwall. His descendants, and there were many, carved out new kingdoms for themselves in western and central Ulster.


It seems that Niall fathered many children during his reign. The heritage today is believed to include more than three million men from around the world, counted among his offspring. The only other world emperor to achieve as impressive a legacy was Genghis Khan, of Mongolia, who conquered most of Asia in the 13th Century and left an estimated 16 million descendants.


The Trinity research project was led by a doctoral student, Laoise Moore, working at the Smurfit Institute of Genetics. Moore tested the Y chromosome that is passed from fathers to sons and examined DNA samples from 800 men across Ireland. The results of her work, published in the American Journal of Human Genetics, shows the highest concentration of related men in northwest Ireland, where one in five males have the same Y chromosome.


When testing males of Irish heritage in other parts of the world the frequency of the same Y chromosome was significantly higher in certain family names that obviously can be traced back to the Neill dynasty. These surnames, many of them modernized and altered following family movements to other lands, include Gallagher, Boyle, O’Donnell and O’Doherty.


Those latter two names are of special interest to this family with Irish roots since these names are very close to the name O’Donahue, which was the original family name before the “O” was dropped about three or four generations ago.


There is an organization in existence that is tracing Irish family names by doing DNA tests for a price, in case anybody out there is interested in finding out.


As for this writer, it isn’t necessary to know if our son, Aaron C. Donahue can trace his genetic heritage to Irish royalty. It is easy to see that the royalty is in his blood and has been from the day he was born.


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