Dēmos · Classical Athenian Democracy · a Stoa Publication
→ Agenda for Meetings.
Christopher W. Blackwell, edition of January 23, 2003
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The Presidents were responsible for summoning the Council to meet (Dem. 18.169; IG II2 1629.247-251). They were also responsible for setting the agenda (τὸ πρόγραμμα) for the meeting (Aristot. Ath. Pol. 44.2).
In the early years of the Athenian democracy, the Presidents (πρυτάνεις) and their Chairman (ἐπιστάτης) presided over the conduct of Council meetings (Aristoph. Kn. 674; IG II2 50; IG I3 196). But in the
The agenda naturally varied greatly from meeting to meeting, but there were certainly regularly recurring items. For example, people owing money to the Athenian state, on certain kinds of contracts—taxes, mining leases, etc. (see Aristot. Ath. Pol. 47.1)—were supposed to make regular payments to the state, payable once in each Prytany (Aristot. Ath. Pol. 47.3). So, the agenda for the first two meetings of the Council in each prytany included, as an item of business, the report of the “ten Receivers” (ἀποδέκται δέκα), who would read their records of who had and had not made his payment (Aristot. Ath. Pol. 48.1-2).
Also, an inscription from the
Matters of foreign policy, which were not predictable, were often the subject of special meetings of the Council, with only one issue on the agenda (see for example Dem. 19.185).
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