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CHUON NATH (1883-1969)

21.07.2010 23:43 EDT
Venerable Chuon Nath played a major role in the campaign to spread Buddhism and national literature, published many books on both religious and secular topics in Khmer, to encourage the development of the Mahanikay and Khmer literature.

After passing the selection examination, he became a Professor at the School of Pali in 1915.
From 1914, he was made a member of the Committee for the Creation of a Khmer Dictionary.
In 1922-1923, he traveled to Hanoi to study Sanskrit and Khmer inscriptions under the supervision of the Director of the École Française d’Extrême Orient, Louis Finot.
In 1930, he was appointed Deputy Director of the Higher School of Pali. The same year, he was made responsible for revising the Khmer dictionary to prepare it for its first publication.
In 1955, he was appointed Abbot of Wat Ounaloum, and the following year he became the President of the Assembly of Elders (Theersophie).
In 1947, he was appointed the Preahmahasomeytiethopdey of the Mahanikay, a position which was made permanent in 1960.
In 1954, leading a delegation to join the Sixth Buddhist Council in Burma, he received the title Preah Agga-Maha-Pandita, and in 1957 he was nominated Appithachamaharoetguru by the Union of Burma.
In 1964, he was made Editor General of Khmer literature and an honorary member of the Khmer Writer’s Association.
In 1963, Head of State Prince Norodom Sihanouk appointed him SamdecPreahSanghareac, or supreme patriarch and chief of the Mahanikay order, of the first rank.
In 1967 conferred upon him an Honorary Doctorate of Literature from the Faculty of Literature and the Humanities of the Royal University of Phnom Penh.

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