DNA tests to reveal if men descend from warlord Niall
By Sarah Stack
Fathers who believe they rule the roost can now discover if they are the descendent of a notorious Irish warlord.
Ireland’s oldest pub and New York’s first Irish tavern will be offering DNA testing on Father’s Day to identify relatives of the marauding king Niall of the Nine Hostages.
On Sunday patrons in Sean’s Bar in Athlone, Co Westmeath and McSorley’s in Manhattan, can give a simple cheek swab which will be sent to the ancestral DNA testing company Oxford Ancestors at the University of Oxford.
The tests will reveal if any of the men carry the unique Y-line signature that is believed to be that of wild king Niall who founded the Ui Neill or O’Neill dynasty, which ruled Ireland from the 7th to the 9th century.
Research has found that one in 12 Irish men could be descended from the 5th century warlord, with the highest concentration in the north-west of Ireland.
It has been estimated that an amazing 3 million men worldwide carry the Ui Neill Y-chromosome.
Customers revealed to be a descendant of Niall – who scientists suggest is second only to Genghis Khan in fecundity – will receive complimentary drinks and the house-s food speciality.
The results – which will be studied by the geneticist Bryan Sykes of Ancestors oxfords – will take about four weeks to return.
Among the other surnames belonging to the Ui Neill clan are (O) Gallacher, Boyle, O’Doherty, O’Connor, Cannon, Devlin, McCaul, Egan and O’Reilly.