Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

Get access

Gerontocracy
(936 words)

As defined by Max Weber, gerontocracy is a traditional authority principle that was dominant in many of the patriarchially organized states of ancient Greece in various institutional forms and was reserved to free males of aristocratic origin. Later, however, in the Roman Republic, it also determined the structures of political decision-making. In the early modern period, the term became synonymous with all kinds of exercise of authority in which men defined socially as “old” dominated the decision-maki…

Cite this page
Kondratowitz, Hans-Joachim von, “Gerontocracy”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 26 August 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_019982>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180915



▲   Back to top   ▲