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Armenian Military Medal?


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Definitely Armenian from the writing on the front. And the image is Vartan Mamikonian - one of Armenia's legendary heroes. He fought an overwhelming Persian army in 451 and although he was defeated, the Persians took heavy casualties and retreated. He is credited with saving Armenian culture and religion from oblivion. There is a huge statue to him in Yerevan; near the flea market where I used to buy all my Soviet medals.

On the back the design under the sword is the Armenian symbol for eternity. However, I can't say this is a military award. Remember, Armenia didn't exist as an independent country until after WWI - before it was under the Persians, then Ottomans. By 1920, it was no longer independent and was under the Soviets - regaining independence after the fall of the Soviet Union.

Certainly old, but I really don't think it's a military medal. The word on the front appears to be the name Marmikonian; in Armenia: Մամիկոնյան There is also an initial before the word. Vartan was made a saint in the Armenian Church. This could be a Saint Marmikonian religious medal or charm.

Edited by IrishGunner
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Hi,

All the information i found on this medal said it was an Armenian War medal for bravery.

One picture had it attached to a red,blue and yellow striped ribbon, not sure if that is correct though.

Regards Eddie.

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Hi,

All the information i found on this medal said it was an Armenian War medal for bravery.

One picture had it attached to a red,blue and yellow striped ribbon, not sure if that is correct though.

Regards Eddie.

Eddie; interesting - can you give us the source and some pictures? This could be significant.

This is definitely not a post-Soviet decoration of the Republic of Armenia. The Ministry of Defense and Office of the President websites show those very clearly. There is a modern day decoration: The Order "Vardan Mamikonian" awarded by the President.

From the Armenian President's website: "The Order "Vardan Mamikonian" is awarded for exclusive courage, displayed when carrying out military duties to the Motherland, as well as for significant services provided for the construction of the military and the securing of the combat training of the forces." The attached image is the modern Order.

It would make sense that anything with Mamikonian would be for bravery. It's possible this is from the 1918-22 Armenian Republic. The Armenians were at constant war during that time with the Turks, the Georgians, the Azerbaijanis, the Bolsheviks. If this is a bravery medal from that time period, I would think it would be quite scarce.

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Dan, that's the statue! It might be no surprise that right across the street from this statue is a little cafe - at the edge of the flea market - that had the coldest Kilikia beer. It was a great spot to have a couple beers, smoke a cigar, watch the "scenery" and admire all my great purchase from the flea market. :cool: Thus, I never walked across the street to snap the photo. :whistle:

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Eddie; interesting - can you give us the source and some pictures? This could be significant.

This is definitely not a post-Soviet decoration of the Republic of Armenia. The Ministry of Defense and Office of the President websites show those very clearly. There is a modern day decoration: The Order "Vardan Mamikonian" awarded by the President.

From the Armenian President's website: "The Order "Vardan Mamikonian" is awarded for exclusive courage, displayed when carrying out military duties to the Motherland, as well as for significant services provided for the construction of the military and the securing of the combat training of the forces." The attached image is the modern Order.

It would make sense that anything with Mamikonian would be for bravery. It's possible this is from the 1918-22 Armenian Republic. The Armenians were at constant war during that time with the Turks, the Georgians, the Azerbaijanis, the Bolsheviks. If this is a bravery medal from that time period, I would think it would be quite scarce.

Hi,

well this information is from a commercial site i'm afraid so this post will probaby have to be deleted.

I''ve sent you and Kev a link in case

Info and pictures CO Medal-medallie .com

Medal for Bravery with the portrait of Vartan Mamikonian

Circular bronze medal with loop for ribbon suspension; the face with the helmeted head of Vartan Mamikonian facing right and an inscription written in the Armenian alphabet; the reverse with a circular geometric design within a geometric border, an upright sword imposed; the suspension rings replaced; on a recent ribbon in the national colours of Armenia. Saint Vartan Mamikonian, is revered as one of the greatest military and spiritual leaders of ancient Armenia. After he became Sparapet in 432, the Persians summoned him to Ctesiphon, forcing him to convert to Zoroastrianism. Upon his return to home in 450, Vartan repudiated the Persian religion and instigated a great Armenian rebellion against their Sassanian overlords. Although he died in the Battle of Vartanantz (451), the insurrection led to the restoration of Armenian autonomy, thus guaranteeing the survival of Armenian statehood in later centuries. This medal was probably created and awarded at the time of Armenian insurrection against Ottoman Turkish rule in the late 19th or very early 20th Century.

Regards Eddie

Edited by Taz
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As you can see by the pics there seems to be at least two versions of this medal.

The red and white ribbon looks older, the one with the Armenian colours is probably a replacement.

Regards Eddie

Edited by Taz
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Well, those images do muddy the water somewhat, don't they? Probably ruling out the idea that it's a simple religious charm. I certainly think the red/blue/yellow ribbon is a replacement - it is too much like modern medal ribbons - specifically the Marshall Bagramian medal I've posted elsewhere on this forum.

I'm still reluctant to believe this is a bravery medal from the 1918-22 Democratic Republic of Armenia, but it's certainly possible. I've sent an email to a colleague in Yerevan; hopefully he can shed some additional light.

Kev, do you remember how much this was selling for in Romania?

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