The American Oriental Society awards the Medal of Merit from time to time to exceptionally distinguished scholars for their contributions to scholarship in Oriental studies and for their dedicated service to the Society. The AOS Medal of Merit Committee, composed of the three most recent Presidents of the Society, elects recipients of the award.
1994—Franz Rosenthal (d. 2003, Professor Emeritus, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Literatures, Yale University: Arabic and Semitics)
1996—Hans Gustav Güterbock (d. 2000, Tiffany and Margaret Blake Distinguished Service Professor of Hittitology, Oriental Institute, University of Chicago)
1999—Denis Sinor (d. 2011, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Department of Central Eurasian Studies, Uralic and Altaic Studies, Indiana University, Bloomington)
2000—Murray Emeneau (d. 2005, Professor Emeritus, Linguistics, University of California, Berkeley: Sanskrit, Indic folklore and linguistics)
2002—Erica Reiner (d. 2005, John A. Wilson Distinguished Service Professor of Assyriology, Emerita, Oriental Institute, University of Chicago)
2017—Stanley Insler (Salisbury Professor of Sanskrit and Comparative Philology, Emeritus, Yale University)