I find it curious that the piece above didn’t mention Uyghurs at all.
The expansion of the Han north and west, and the rise of a powerful integrated state which could bully, and could also be extorted, changed the dynamics on the steppe and in the oasis cities beyond.The vast swaths of Central Asia which were Indo-European in speech became Altaic in speech.They imposed their language on the older residents, but genetically assimilated them. In the papers published on the Uyghurs they shake out as about a 50/50 West/East Eurasian mix.But the DODECAD ANCESTRY PROJECT has them in the sample, and here’s how they break down by a finer grain: Uyghurs are the third population from the bottom. The Yakut are the northernmost Turkic people, and the Turkic element which settled in Xinjiang and assimilated the Tocharians was from the north.Many of the villagers have Western characteristics including green eyes and blonde hair leading some experts to suggest that they may be the descendants of a lost Roman legion that settled in the area.
Now DNA testing of the villagers has shown that almost two thirds of them are of Caucasian origin.
In the year 110 BC the Roman army was composed of propertied peasants.
These were men of moderate means, but means nonetheless.
They fought for the Republic because it was their duty as citizens. Due to a series of catastrophes the Roman army had to institute the Marian reforms in 107 BC.
Men with no means, and who had to be supplied with arms by the Republic, joined the military.
The villagers of Liqian are a different part of the story.