Athens - Areios Pagos
Rock hill to the north-west of the Acropolis, near Pnyx. It was named after the
administrative body of the aristocracy (7th century BC) , which is presumed
to have resided there.
Ancient Greeks attributed the name to Ares (Mars), Greek god of war, or to Erinnyes
the Furies, godesses of vengeance and remorse). The name is probably related to
the later duties of the body, which after 462 BC were limited
to judging cases of "voluntary murder" and, occasionally, religious crimes.
The judging of murder cases was held in the open air, so that
the judges would not have to stand under the same roof with the murderer, which was
considered unclean, whilst the judging of religious crimes was held at Basileios Stoa
of the Agora of the ancient Athens.
The fact that apostle Paul chose this place to preach in the 1st century AD
is probably due to the fact that foreign religion was part of the jurisdiction of Areios Pagos.