In the Archaic Period, a body of elder statesmen in a polis, with advisory functions, sometimes judicial powers, and religious authority. It consists of various priests, former holders of certain high magistracies, and sometimes senior members of certain families. The members are nearly always over sixty. See Four Lives.

In the Classical Period, a body consisting of the heirs of the rulers of monarchial states absorbed by the Theklan hegemony in forming the empire of Gehennum, plus the heirs of certain people elevated to it by act of legislation (see social mobility). The members of the Gerūsia are the dynastai, and may only be tried by the Gerūsia. The Gerūsia acts as supreme court and as the upper chamber of the legislature, and claims the right to choose who shall succeed to the throne when it is vacant.

In the Decadent Period, a meeting which the dynastai are required to attend twice per year in Thekla. In theory, dynastai are still only liable to be tried by the Senate, but in practice they are subject to summary treatment by the polemarkh in cases touching the security of the regime.

Copyright © 1991 by Brett Evill. All rights reserved.