PARIS–Prominent French expert in Oriental studies–a brilliant translator of the works of medieval Armenian historian Movses Khorenatsi and poet Naregatsi into French–and a great friend of the Armenian people Jean-Pierre Mah was awarded the French Academician’s sword at The University of Paris-Sorbonne. During the ceremony–past students and co-workers spoke of Mah’s undertakings and intense examinations.
Eastern Languages and Civilization professor Patricia Boisson recalled his ancient Armenian language (Krapar) courses and translations of ancient Armenian literature. The honorable chair of The Sorbonne’s Protestant theology department spoke of Jean-Pierre Mah’s intellectual capabilities–stressing the flexibility–conviction and strength of his undertakings–and characterized him as an "excellent authority on the Christian West and at the same time–one of the foremost experts on the Christian East," and presented the Academician’s sword and medallion to Mah.
In accepting the honor–Mah thanked the presenters and those attending and expressed appreciation to various establishmen’s. He specifically expressed gratitude to Armenia and the ‘Madenataran’ of Armenia that houses ancient man’scripts. He stated that in spite of history’s consternations–they have been able to preserve an unbelievable wealth of books.
After Mah’s speech–singer Mgerdich Mgerdichian performed ‘Horovel’ and ‘Groong.’ Setrag Koulaksezian–a musician with the French radio orchestra performed a collection of works from Gomidas.
The French academician’s sword symbolizes a part of the Academician’s uniform whose form and ornamen’s suggest the origins–career and interests of the recipient.