The Assembly at Argos (before the First National Assembly)
Municipality of Argos
In the end of November 1821, after repeated appeals by Ypsilantis, Kolokotronis and the people of Hydra, the representatives of the regions of Peloponnese began gathering in Argos, where there was a serious ebullition, due to the repeated conflicts between the dignitaries and the servicemen. The works of the assembly began on the 1st of December and two days later Mavrokordatos and Negris came with the constituents from West and East Sterea Hellas. But, while Ypsilantis’s plans and preparatory work provided a National Assembly – moreover this was pointed out in newsletters and epistles he had sent from time to time- the Assembly of Argos limited its aims after Mavrokordatos’s acts and took the characteristics of a local assembly of Peloponnese.
Ypsilantis, as he was weakened, having the servicemen only to support him, could not react to the becoming of the assembly form a National to a Peloponnesian one and accepted that the assembly would form the institution that it founded, which was the “Peloponnesian Senate”. On the first day of the Peloponnesian Assembly voted for a manifest titled “Prolegomena” (Preface), because it was put in front the Organization of the Peloponnesian Senate, which was voted for immediately afterwards. One aim appears through this manifest, which is full of contradictions and inaccuracies: To forget the contribution of the Ypsilantis family to the Revolution, to forget about Filiki Etaireia, to ascribe the Greek Revolution not to the unified decision of the nation for a rebellion against the Turkish domination, but to certain events and justify the “anarchy and disorder” that existed due to war adventures, while everyone knew that this was a result of the conflict between Ypsilantis and the dignitaries, which was caused by the latter.
The assembly of Argos voted for the Organization of the Peloponnesian Senate, which was finally signed by all the constituents of Peloponnese in Epidavros on the 27th of December and it was titled as “Organization on temporary administration”. Ypsilantis, Kolokotronis and Petrobeis signed it as well, despite their fundamental consciousness and their displeasure, believing that maybe the Assembly of Epidavros, which had begun working, would become the main power to pull any other local organization out of the way.
This organization, which was formed like the Organization of west continental Greece, clearly has the seal of Mavrokordatos and Negris, who had assumed the care for legistlation even though they had not taken part in the discussions.
This Organization is divided in four main chapters.
The first one is referred to the way of elections of the curators of the villages, their duties and rights. The second defines the procedures of indirect election of curators of provinces, their incumbency and their duties. In the third chapter, the function and appositeness of the Peloponnesian Senate, which will resign to all the legal orders of the National Parliament is thoroughly discussed. In the same chapter there is a reference to the future compensation of the marine islands and it is appointed that four generals elected by all the generals of Peloponnese will stay close to the Senate, so that they can judge in war cases.
Since the servicemen would resign to the Senate, the mastership of the dignitaries was absolute. The Senate would elect the generals of Peloponnese “among the most competent and hardest working for the country”.
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