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Ancient and modern

How the Athenians would have handled the Lords

15 August 2020

9:00 AM

15 August 2020

9:00 AM

Arguments about the purpose or indeed very existence of anything resembling the House of Lords would have struck classical democratic Athenians as bizarre. But its Areopagus might prompt thought.

This body had been in existence long before Cleisthenes invented radical democracy in 508 bc. It was made up of the wealthy aristocratic elite from whom alone the main state officials (archons) could be drawn.

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