Politics 16:44 12/06/2017 Armenia

Jewish Armenologist Michael Stone on Armenian culture and unique archaeological discoveries

Author Nvard Chalikyan

“When I was doing my PhD I started to learn Armenian. I [also] learned to have great affection for the Armenian people and its creativity. I liked it… I learned to value the music and art through my wife”, – says in the video interview to ScholArm Dr. Michael Stone professor of Armenian studies at Hebrew University of Jerusalem who has devoted many years of his life to studying Armenian history and culture; he has authored over 40 books and 400 articles, most of which are on Armenian topics.

He has done many studies of stories related to the Bible in Armenian, about which he says,
“There is an enormous literature of Armenian biblical stories that are not in the Bible but are told retelling the Bible stories. I have recently published a book in Yerevan of texts of this sort, published by Matenadaran [Armenian manuscript museum]”.

Apart from being a scholar and historian Dr. Stone is also a poet and has translated a good deal of medieval Armenian poetry into English, including such work as Adamgirk of Armenian philosopher Arakel Syunetsi.
Dr. Stone also has a great interest in Armenian epigraphy and has himself made discoveries of old Armenian inscriptions.

“I had the great fortune in the late 1970s and early 1980s to work in the Sinai desert. We did find extremely old Armenian inscriptions, not just on Mount Sinai but also in various stopping places in the desert. They were dated archeologically probably between 430 and 440, which means they were written in all likelihood when St. Mesrop Mashtots was still alive”, – he says.   

On the pages of one of his books he shows the oldest Armenian writing (inscription) which is an Armenian name written in Armenian alphabet.

“[Those who wrote these names] were in Nazareth, in the Church of Annunciation; then they went to Mount Sinai and wrote their names in both places. The Latins built a new basilica and they found stones underneath, below a mosaic floor that was damaged in an earthquake. We know that there was an earthquake in the middle of the fifth century, in the year 447; so anything under that floor is older than 447. This was quite an extraordinary discovery”, – he says, adding that the director of the archaeological institute of the Armenian academy told him they didn’t have anything of this age. 

He has also discovered a special dialect of Armenian that was spoken by the people in Jerusalem who were called gaghatsiner – old Armenian families.

Dr. Stone also speaks about the discovery of a Jewish cemetery in Armenia. Near the village of Yeghegis together with the primate of Vayots Dzor Bishop Abraham Mikirdichian they discovered a cemetery which had inscriptions in Hebrew and Aramaic dating back to the 13th century. 

“So there was a Jewish community in Yeghegis for at least 100 years who were buried and who were rich enough to leave gravestones, like the family Orbelian cemetery... This is important, for [we discovered that] there was a Jewish settlement in Armenia in the 13th century. Those people came from Iran... We know from Stepanos Orbelian that there were also Jews in Kapan. So there is a lot of evidence”, – he says. They are currently preparing a book on the history of Jews in Armenia together with philologist Aram Topchyan.
Speaking about the Armenian Genocide Dr. Stone says, “I as a human being am profoundly committed to recognition and restitution of the Armenian Genocide… [The recognition of the Armenian Genocide] is important for any human being first of all. Second, I think we underwent the same thing... It was Genocide and we should recognize it – it is just a moral imperative…  When you think of the riches that the people had produced… I was in Istanbul (Constantinople we say) some years ago, and I saw the chemaran [academy] in which the great Armenian linguist Acharyan studied. It was a great culture – music, food, language and dialects”.

There are Armenian classes currently held in Hebrew University of Jerusalem; the program has about 30 students. Dr. Stone used to teach Armenian and also Medieval Armenian, and though he has retired he still continues to teach Grabar (Classical Armenian) for advanced students. His former student currently teaches Armenian as well. In the university they commemorate the date of the Armenian Genocide as an official university function.

They also often invite visiting professors of Armenian studies from abroad, among them Theo Van Lint (professor of Armenian literature at Oxford) and others.

Dr. Stone has been to Armenia for many times and visits annually to continue his work.



Source Panorama.am
Share |
Տեքստում սխալ կամ վրիպակ նկատելու դեպքում, ուղարկեք խմբագրին հաղորդագրություն` նշելով տվյալ սխալը, այնուհետև սեղմելով Ctrl-Enter:

Newsfeed

17:30
Rafting competition held in Armenia for the first time
Rafting competition was held for the first time in Armenia. As the ministry of sport and youth affairs reports, the competition that uses an...
16:14
Babloyan, Syllouris discuss prospects for establishing Armenia-Cyprus-Greece parliamentary format
“The visit of the delegation of the House of Representatives of Cyprus to Armenia will have significant input in strengthening and...
15:09
“We want to see a powerful Armenia” – Cypriot official
Cyprus wants to see a powerful Armenia, and its approach toward the country is not linked with the country’s leadership, President of the...
14:41
Armenian military to get Tor missile systems from Russia in next few months
The Armenian Armed Forces are expected to receive Tor air defense missile systems from Russia within several months, the Public TV Company...
13:48
16 cellists set to compete at 14th Khachaturian International Competition
The results of the preliminary selection of the 14th Khachaturian International Competition have been announced, with 16 cellists from 9...
12:43
Belgium’s Charles Michel congratulates Armenia’s Pashinyan on becoming PM
Prime Minister of Belgium Charles Michel has offered his congratulations to Nikol Pashinyan on becoming Armenia’s Prime Minister,...
12:14
MPs: UK turning ‘blind eye’ to Russian oligarchs laundering money through London
The U.K. is ignoring the fact that “dirty” Russian money is being laundered through London, undermining the government’s...
11:58
Armenia’s tablet production up in first quarter of 2018
Tablet production saw an increase in Armenia in the first three months of 2018, the statistics show. A total of 224 units of tables were...
11:22
Weather update: Showers, thunderstorms pick up today into much of this week
Meteorologists forecast scattered showers and thunderstorms for most regions of Armenia from 21 to 25 May, with wind intensification up to...
10:51
Trump asking aides whether he should proceed with North Korea summit: report
U.S. President Donald Trump has been asking his aides if he should move forward with the planned meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un...
20:05
Armenian, Artsakh FMs discuss the positive dynamics in the process of international recognition of Artsakh
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh Republic) Masis Mayilian met today with Minister of Foreign Affairs of...
19:39
Forbes releases the World's Most Powerful People 2018
Forbes magazine released the annual ranking of The World’s Most Powerful People that identifies one person out of every 100 million whose...
19:00
Air temperature to drop by 3-4 degrees over the coming days
Rain with thunderstorm is predicted on May 20, in most regions, from time to time on May 21-24, Hydromet meteorological service at the ministry...
18:22
President Sarkissian offers condolences over passenger plane crash in Cuba
Armenian President Armen Sarkissian sent a letter of condolences to the President of the Cuban Council of State and President of the Council of...
17:41
Tribute to memory of Pontian Greek Genocide victims held in Yerevan
Armenian lawmakers, NGO representatives and members of national communities of Armenia visited today Tsitsernakaberd Memorial complex to honor...
16:40
Municipal museums will join International Museums Day and “European Museum Night” events
On May 18 and 19, Yerevan History Museum, Erebuni historical and archaeological reserve-museum, Modern Art Museum, “Karen...
15:00
Bako Sahakyan receives Armenian defense minister
Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakyan received today the defense minister of of Armenia David Tonoyan. As the information department at...
14:28
Azerbaijani forces apply automatic grenade launcher at Artsakh Line of Contact
The relatively stable situation was maintained across the Line of Contact between Nagorno Karabakh Republic (NKR) and Azerbaijan forces from May...
13:58
Texas teen charged after deadly shooting in Santa Fe school
A 17-year-old boy armed with a shotgun and a revolver has opened fire at a school in the US state of Texas, killing at least 10 people and...
13:18
527 babies born in January-March 2018 in Artsakh
A total of 527 babies were born in the Republic of Artsakh from January to March 2018, up by 12 births from the same period last year (515...
13:05
Turkish HDP members meet with residents of the Armenian village
Members of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) of Turkey have visited Vakifli, the last remaining Armenian village in Turkey. As Ermenihaber...
12:17
Artsakh has been and will be at the forefront of our diplomacy – foreign minister
Artsakh has been and will be at the forefront of our diplomacy as long as we are not confident its security and development goes on naturally,...
11:35
With bike to workplace: VivaCell-MTS employees joined the international initiative
VivaCell-MTS for the second year takes part in the “Bike to Work” international public awareness campaign with the aim of promoting...
10:52
More than 100 killed in Cuba plane crash
More than 100 people are believed dead Friday after a Cubana de Aviacion Boeing 737-200 crashed on takeoff from Havana's Jose Marti...
20:31
Putin, Merkel hold talks in Sochi
Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday that he would stand up to any attempts by U.S....
20:02
Artsakh’s Kovsakan, Lebanon’s Anjar sign memorandum of cooperation
A Memorandum of Cooperation was signed on Friday between Kovsakan town of the Republic of Artsakh and Anjar town of the Republic of Lebanon,...
19:25
Nikol Pashinyan, Richard Mills discuss issues related to Armenia-U.S. relations
Armenia’s government is interested in and attaches great importance to the cooperation with the Unites States and its possible support in...
18:36
Speaker Babloyan signs protocol to terminate Armen Babayan’s MP mandate
Speaker of the Armenian National Assembly Ara Babloyan on Friday signed a protocol on terminating the parliamentary mandate of Armen Babayan...
17:51
Artsakh leader hosts delegation of Armenia’s Public Services Regulatory Commission
Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakyan on Friday received the delegation of the Public Services Regulatory Commission led by Chairman of the...
17:30
UN rights chief warns violence in Gaza reaches a peak in past week
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein on Friday warned that the violence in Gaza has reached a peak in the past...

Follow us and get updates!

Most popular articles

{"core.blocks.header.spell_message1":"Selected mistake: ","core.blocks.header.spell_message2":"Send a message about the mistake?"}