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Vikings and villains

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Published by University of Leicester Press Office for University of Leicester in Education and also in Communities

The Viking invasions have been a source of fascination for centuries

On Monday 31st October at 7.30pm anyone with an interest in the legacy these Norsemen left behind them might well consider invading the Leicester Lit & Phil Society where geneticist and historian Dr Turi King will be speaking on ‘Vikings and Villains: Surnames, Genetics and Ancestry’ in the Main Hall of the Leicester Museum and Art Gallery, New Walk.

Dr Turi King, a member of the University of Leicester Department of Genetics and the School of Historical Studies, will discuss her research on the link between surnames and genetics and how this can be applied in the fields of genetic genealogy, forensics and population histories. 

Dr King is currently the Project Manager and Research Fellow on the interdisciplinary research programme ‘The Impact of Diasporas on the Making of Britain’. Her current research focuses on the genetic legacy of the Vikings in the north of England. 

“I became interested in how the discipline of genetics can be married with those of archaeology, anthropology and history while studying biological anthropology at the University of Cambridge,” she writes on her website.

“This interest in interdisciplinary research took me on to the University of Leicester to study for a Masters degree in molecular genetics, where I had the good fortune of carrying out my research project in Professor Mark Jobling's lab characterizing two Y chromosome polymorphisms. I was hooked!”

Dr King’s doctoral research examined the link between surname and Y chromosome type in Britain. Her current research explores this relationship further and how it can find an application in the fields of genealogy, forensics, population history.

President of the Lit & Phil and Head of Engineering at the University of Leicester, Professor John Fothergill said:  “This talk will have something of interest for everyone with its combination of genetics, genealogy and history.”

As always, visitors and new members are welcome to meetings of the Leicester Literary and Philosophical Society, generally known as the ‘Lit & Phil’

Meetings take place fortnightly during the season and present a distinguished speaker who answers questions after the talk. The talks are followed by refreshments.

Membership of the Society is £12.50 a year (£5.00 for students) for twelve events.

For more details, including dates of events or membership, please see the website http://www.leicesterlitandphil.org.uk/.   Information about membership is also available from tel 01455 209291.

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