Matiossian to Talk on ‘Aryan Myth’

NEW YORK—On Thurs., Dec. 1, Dr. Vartan Matiossian will give a presentation titled “The Aryan Myth, Hitler, and the Armenians” at the Diocesan Complex in New York at 7 p.m.

Vartan Matiossian

Matiossian will explore the definition of the word “Aryan” and how it has historically related to Armenians. “At the beginning of the 20th century, there was a strong anti-Armenian, racist current in Germany, which became evident during the Armenian Genocide and its aftermath,” he said. “Hitler, who was aware of anti-Armenian writings, first mentioned Armenians in 1922, when he already spoke of them as a mixed race, and maintained such views from time to time.”

He will also touch upon the campaign to categorize Armenians as Semites, and the strong Armenian lobby that succeeded in ensuring the recognition of Armenians as Aryans.

Matiossian began his research on this topic almost a decade ago after reading about a German-Armenian scholar who had been involved in the lobbying effort. After publishing subsequent articles about his findings in Armenian, he found an absence in scholarship on the topic in English and continued his research, which has culminated into a book-size manuscript.

As he continued to investigate, he came across unexpected information that fueled his research further. “It was extremely interesting to see how unfavorably Armenians were pictured, particularly in the 1800-1920 period, in the West,” he said.

Matiossian is currently the executive director of the Armenian National Education Committee in New York. He is a native of Montevideo, Uruguay, and received his Ph.D. in history from the National Academy of Sciences in Armenia. He is the author of 5 books in Armenian and 1 in Spanish, and has translated 13 books from Armenian into Spanish.


  1. Armenians are Semites. I’ve always known this. Armenians wish to think themselves as ‘white’ and be associated with Europe instead of their Middle Eastern cousins. But they know in there heart that they are not white. Eurasian, Middle Eastern, Oriental , or Semitic, its all the same.
    Armenians must learn that we will never be liked by anyone. We must help each other and not look to help other Nations. We must stop being used for political gain, only to be discarded once once their purpose was met. We must unite and only do for our self’s.
    I want to know if his books are in English because I want to read them. Or if someone from Armenian Weekly can tell or send this message Vartan Matiossian on my behalf to get in touch with him.
    Thank you

  2. ‘Armenians are Semites. I’ve always known this.’ If you have always known this, you have always been wrong. Armenians are not Semites. Armenians are a mix of indigenous proto-Armenian peoples who inhabited the Armenian Highlands and Armenian Caucasus.
    The campaign to falsely claim Armenians to be Semites was launched by Turks and their Turkophile agents. The purpose was and is to portray Armenians as non-indigenous to our homeland. And then once that is accomplished, next step is to justify the presence of non-indigenous Turks. All nice and neat. 

    ‘Armenians wish to think themselves as ‘white’ and be associated with Europe instead of their Middle Eastern cousins’

    I don’t know many Armenians who  wish to think themselves as ‘white’  or associated with Europe.
    Most Armenians I come into contact with think of themselves as Armenians.
    BTW: guess where the term ‘Caucasian’, which is  the scientific term for the common ‘White’,  came from ? 

  3. Armenians, a distinct member of Indo-European family of nations and the first officially Christian nation on Earth, by definition cannot be Semites. I wonder what other idiotic comments will we have ‘the pleasure’ of observing on these pages?  Why do Turkish denialsts and their sympathizers devaluate themselves so cheaply by making themselves look as idiots?

  4. Let’s not fall into the trap of Victorian race “scholars” and their all time best student, Hitler.

    Armenian language is Indo-European, meaning it has similarities to a broad array of languages including Sanscrit, Persian, Italic, Germanic, Celtic etc. That’s about it. That doesn’t make us Celts or near-Germans.

    Race is not a scientifically useful term. The markers for race don’t mean much, and are real fuzzy at their margins. Race is primarily a social and cultural idea, albeit a real powerful one.

    People who identify themselves as Armenian are highly variable in appearance. They have genetic similarities, as one would expect, to other groups in the Caucasus, Anatolia, the Levant, and southern Europe.

    The language developed in the west, and conquerors who spoke it moved east, conquering the native peoples in the Highlands. Just as Turkic-speakers moved west and conquered the native peoples millenia later.

    Whether we or our language originated in a Semitic language area, which is apparently thought bad, or in Europe, thought good, is irrelevant to everything. It also shows too much thinking along Hitler categories. Why do our families tend to prize blonde, fair and blue or green eyed children and relatives more than darker ones?

    In this illness, we are not alone. Jews do it, as do every other ‘darker” group, and probably everybody else except Chinese and Japanese. Let’s cast it aside. Look at the ancient coins of Tigranes. Looked pretty Middle Eastern. Big eyes, big nose, big chin. Big conquests too.

  5. Armenians are Assyrian expratriots mixed with local tribes. Assyrians are from Asshur. Asshur came from Shem( the term Semites). Shem from Noah. But also the the family came from  Aram. Haig might have been from Japheth but the fact that he remained after the Tower of babel fell says that his mother was of that family( educated guess). Or I believe he could have been a Titan. Half human half deity. It correlates with what was said of Haig being a giant or Haig being Hercules. From that they’re were race of giants. Every culture says there were giants including the Bible.  Armenians are not just a mixture of indigenous people but came from somewhere. It started from Samaria or Assyria during the time of Nimrod. 
    What you say about Armenians doesn’t match the reality. Armenians by all means are Semitic. The descriptions of what is to be Semitic falls on Armenians perfectly.
    The nature, mindset, cultural similarities, opaque white skin ( Caucasians have red or yellow dew to thin skin) and oh ya Semites calling themselves by their own name like they are the only Nation or race. Armenian calling themselves Armenians; Jews calling themselves Jews ex..
    Not to mention the ‘Clan like Mentality’. The ability to stay alive and stick together hundreds of years without military or central government. The complete compulsion to maintain and keep the race and culture alive no matter how difficultly impossible the situation is to be. The thing is can anyone explain to me why?
    Those Are Semitic Traits. They are solid and concrete.  Look up Semites and study it.
    I can go on about physiological traits such as the eyes, facial structure and opaque white skin.
    There are parallels between:
    You said BTW: guess where the term ‘Caucasian’, which is  the scientific term for the common ‘White’,  came from ?. That doesn’t mean anything. India is in Asia butt doesn’t make the Hindu Asian.
    I am not arguing about the German Armenian history but I am about the classification of Armenians. We don’t match that description but we do with the Semitic traits. 
    Know your history, anthropology, and better yet, it doesn’t hurt to observe and study these cultures. Which my knowledge comes from my intuition, observation, study of  history, and social anthropology. My background helps as well.
    There different versions of the Armenian story, but after careful review of each historical accounts I find so many conflicts and contradictions.  Then I realized they all had an agenda. What you presented to me was the latest version. The funniest the was an another Armenian told me that Armos came from Hittites. No we don’t come from Hittites. The history doesn’t add up.
    The agenda is to separate Armenians far from the Middle East. To say that we didn’t come the Middle East. To say we come from a more ‘civilized’ place or we more superior. Or we appeared out of no where but not from there. I can talk to you about different examples  but I don’t have all day.
    The only thing I saw no contradiction or conflicts was from the Bible, Greek and Armenian history. They sequence. I use the Bible as golden ruler to compare history and notes. I am not putting the Bible ahead because I believe it but because I DO ALOT OF READING. I can memorize mountains of information to notice and look for patterns and anomalies.
    Well I cant continue like this. I hope that helped. Have nice day     

  6. ‘ I use the Bible as golden ruler to compare history and notes.’ 

    Thanks for the clarification: now we know where your impeccable scientific theories of Armenians’ origins originated. Who left the door open ?

  7. Saying that Turks are from Mongolia is not only silly, but it also is parallel to stupid things some Turkish nationalists say. If its reconciliation and brotherhood we want some day, this is a dumb way to get it.

    You can find on Grey Wolves websites all kinds of silly crap showing supposed Mongol-types led by knowing she-wolves to Anatolia. In truth, they all look like Joe Namath in 1969, fu manchu mpoustache and all.

    The Turkic languages come from the far north and east. Got that. But that does not mean much about Anatolian Turks, who genetically have much more in common with their neighbors – including us – than with people in Mongolia.

    Ever spent time with Anatolian Tiurks and Kurds? Their appearance and manners, food, customs and attitudes have more in commmon withh Diaspora Armenians than you may want to admit. Many are, after all, hidden Armenians and the granschildren of Armenians. Kurds and Armenians lived next to eachj other well before The Anabasis.

    There is also a bit of racism in reference to Mongolians as if that is disparaging. Mongol leaders were ruthless killers, true, but they also pioneered transnational trade and administration. Some Armenian princes did well under them, btw.

    What you see in Anatolia and Istanbul/Bolis is the product of many great and creative civilizations, especially from Greek and Armenian sources, and including the great Byzantine Empire, the longest of all empires. 

    Turkish language and civilization came late, conquering Bolis in only 1453, the year of disaster. But looking at the works of the Balian family, or Sinan, and calling their works “Armenian” is only a half-truth – they were part of the Ottoman civilization, no mattter how awful life as an Armenian may have been in those wretched days of subservience.  

    There is no point in referencing Turks as stupid or lazy. Some of our ancestors disparaged them for the same reasons they disparaged some Georgians. Those days are over. Turks are no longer horsemen and soldiers. Mnay troday are industrialists on the world stage.

  8. Hue Red:
    “I use the Bible as golden ruler to compare history and notes. I am not putting the Bible ahead because I believe it but because I DO ALOT OF READING.”
    I’m not sure I find this credible enough to take you seriously. I’ve heard a lot of people say they’ve read a lot in order to be taken seriously, but one has to be skeptical about whether they understand what they’re reading.
    The use of Caucasian to mean white is no longer encouraged in scientific circles from what I understand. It’s an old idea and has fallen out of favor. The everyday usage of it to mean white is also very US centric. In Europe people will assume it means someone from the Caucasus.
    I would not asume Armenians should be considered white simply based on the connection between the words Caucasian and Caucasus.
    In linguistics, there is a Caucasian language group of which Georgian is a member but Armenian is not.

  9. Apparently, someone’s using the pen name “jda”, under which I recall an Armenian was posting elsewhere in AW, to disseminate Turkish historical distortions and denialist crap.

  10. Random,  you are correct that the scientific term ‘Caucasian/Caucasoid’  is no longer encouraged: the scientific terms  for the other 2 major anthropological groupings  –  ‘Mongoloid’, ‘Negroid’ – are considered hurtful to people (maybe even racist), so there is reluctance to use them these days – probably a good thing. But I am not aware of any other term that accurately describes the 3 major anthropological groups. The term ‘White’ to me is meaningless scientifically.
    My reference to ‘Caucasian’ & ‘White’ was in direct response to the illogical and false piece of disinformation spewed by the  poster  Red Hue: Armenians wish to think themselves as ‘white’ and be associated with Europe instead of their Middle Eastern cousins’ .
    His/her subsequent post confirmed for me poster has  mal-intent and ulterior motives in writing what he/she writes. I already explained what that ulterior motive is (as I see it).
    And the word Caucasian was coined  by anthropologist Coon based on racial characteristics, facial features, etc  of  the inhabitants of the Caucasian Mountains next to Armenia– the Georgians, not Armenians. 

  11. Berch, yovroom, we recognize from the signature you’re Robert.

    But in the meantime, youve got me, I admit it. Im one third Turk, three thirds Eskimo, and 4/5ths Draseltonian-Moravian from the Royal House of Hillery Goltensuch.

  12. Turk-oglu Turk pretending to be Armenian ‘jda’.

    Simpletons like you have no chance against our ever vigilant sentinels.
    You are too intellectually primitive to intellectually butt heads with Armenians.
    You have been told lies about us Armenians at your Milli İstihbarat Teşkilatı Graduate Studies School of Anti-Armenian Propaganda and Disinformation.

    Yeah, right Berch is Robert-oglar (the Anti-Armenian Denialist Turk group posting under ‘Robert’).
    And I, an Armenian born in Yerevan, is Turk-oglu Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

  13. Lads,

    If any of you think Armenians (or anyone else) are a superior race, or that there are “Aryan” racial characteristics, took khent ess.

    We admire Ayse Gunyasu and Regip Zerakolu. Do you think they or Rafael Lemkin believe in these Hitler categories?

    Racism should be dead, including racism against Turks.

  14. Lad, Armenians do not think Armenians are a superior race: Turks are the ones who considered Armenians inferior in the Ottoman Empire – remember ?
    Look into the mirror, Turk-oglu. Your demi-God national hero Mustafa Kemal ordered Nazi-like racial purity tests to find the  pure Turk prototype (really).

    Here, check your own Hurriyet, laddie:

    And stop your childish attempts to convince us you are Armenian:  ‘took khent ess.’ ?
    Is that the best you can do ? Not even close: no real Armenian would say that.

  15. DNA doesn’t lie! True,, Armenians are now considered semitic

    I was also reading doing research, that Armenians of past did not want to be related to semites and their problems and probagated the Aryaness and even in Jewish holocaust they were eyed as semites and they quickly propagandized their Arayn so called roots and were let off the hook! Another thing to note, if your Armenian, is the bible.. after Christ’s resurrection talking with his Apostles he only commanded to Paul to go preach among the gentiles(and Pauls travels are well known, not the others), the other Apostles Christ said to go “find my lost sheep of my house of Israel” 4 went thru Armenia and two died there!? Also read about Aram(the son of Shem) and his relations to and with Armenia!

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