Alternative History

A legislature is a deliberative body with the power to make laws. This page is a source of ideas for giving names to alternate legislatures. It's a companion to the Alternate Names lists.

Names of legislatures
Name Origin Examples
Apella Ancient Greek
Apella of Sparta
Assembly Old French assembler < Latin assimulare, "unite, make similar"
National Assembly of Nicaragua
House of Assembly of Dominica
Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina
People's Assembly of Abkhazia
National People's Assembly of Guinea-Bissau
Illinois General Assembly
Legislative Assembly of Ontario
Boule Ancient Greek (modern Greek vouli)
Boule of the Hellenes (Hellenic Parliament)
Boule of Athens
Chief Pleas French Chefs Plaids (originally "Court of Chief Pleas," a judicial body)
Chief Pleas of Sark
Court of Chief Pleas of Guernsey
Congress Latin congressus, "having walked together"
Congress of Colombia
National Congress of Argentina
National People's Congress (PRC)
Congress of the Union (Mexico)
Territorial Congress of New Caledonia
United States of America in Congress Assembled (before 1787)
Convention Latin conventio, "having come together"
Convention of the Estates of Scotland
National Convention (France, 1792-5)
Council Latin concilium, "called together"
Council of the European Union
Council of Representatives of Iraq
Sahrawi National Council
National Council of Chiefs (Vanuatu)
Maggior Consiglio (Republic of Venice)
Council of the Indies
Legislative Council of British Guiana
Court / Corte Old French cort, "enclosed area, king's assembly"
New Hampshire General Court
Great and General Court of Massachusetts Bay
Cortes Gerais (Portugal)
Cortes Generales (Spain)
Danish Court (Danish Danehof)
Diet Latin dieta < Greek diaita, "way of living, judgment"
Diet of Japan (Japanese Kokkai)
(Holy Roman) Imperial Diet (Latin Dieta Imperii, German Reichstag)
Federal Diet (Swiss Confederation)
Duma Russian
Imperial State Duma
State Duma of the Russian Federation
Ecclesia / Ekklesia Ancient Greek[1]
Ecclesia of Athens
Estates French
Estates General (France)
Estates of Württemberg
Folkmoot Old English folcgemot
Folkmoots of Saxon England
Fono Proto-Polynesian
American Samoa Fono
General Fono of Tokelau
Gbara Old Malinke
Gbara of the Mali Empire
Gerousia Ancient Greek "gathering of old men"
Gerousia of Sparta
House / Chamber English translation of various terms
House of Representatives of Libya
House of Burgesses of Virginia
House of Commons of Canada
House of Keys (Isle of Man)
House of Lords (Britain)
House of Elders (Somaliland)
Chamber of Deputies of Mexico
Chamber of Representatives of Colombia
Legislative Chamber of Uzbekistan
Junta Spanish, "together"
General Junta of the Principality of Asturias
Kaupule Tuvaluan
Kaupule Funafuti
Kaupule Niutao
Knesset Hebrew, "gathering"
Knesset of Israel
Kurultai / Qurultay Mongolian
Kurultai of the Mongol Empire
Qurultay of the Crimean People's Republic
Legislature Latin
Legislature of Liberia
National Legislature of South Sudan
Arizona State Legislature
Majlis Arabic
Majlis of Oman
Iranian Majlis/Majles
People's Majlis of the Maldives
Manhyiamu Twi
Asantemanhyiamu (Asante empire)
Oireachtas Irish
Oireachtas Éireann
Panchayat Nepali
Rastriya Panchayat (National Panchayat of Nepal)
Parliament French parlement, "a talk"
European Parliament
Parliament of Australia
National Parliament of Papua New Guinea
Paruman Negara (Bali)
Rada / Råd / Rat / Raad Old High German rat, "council" < Proto-Germanic rad, "advice"
Czech National Rada
Rada of the Belarusian Democratic Republic
Cossack Rada
Greenland Landsråd
Staatsrat of the DDR
Volksraad (Transvaal)
Sanhedrin Aramaic < Greek synedrion, "sitting together"
Great Sanhedrin (Judea)
Grand Sanhedrin (Jews of Napoleonic France)
Sansad Sanskrit
Bharatiya Sansad (Parliament of India)
Sejm Polish
Sejm of the Republic of Poland
Sejm of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth
Saeima (Latvia)
Seimas (Lithuania)
Sejmik (small local Sejm)
Senate Latin Senatus, "gathering of old men"
Senedd Cymru
Roman Senate
Sobor Russian
Zemsky Sobor (Russian Empire)
Soviet Russian
Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union
Petrograd Soviet
States French (same as Estates)
States General of the Netherlands
States of Guernsey
Tag / Dag German Tag, "day, meeting". Compare Tagung, "meeting".[2]
Reichstag/Bundestag (Germany)
Landtag (German states)
Riksdag (Sweden)
Rigsdagen (Denmark)
Thing / Ting Proto-Germanic thinga[3]
Folketing (Denmark)
Althing (Iceland)
Storting (Norway)
Tynwald (Isle of Man)
Tribunate Latin
Tribunat (Napoleonic France)
Comitia Tributa (Roman Republic)
Veche Old Slavonic
Novgorod Veche
Pskov Veche
Witan / Witenagemot Old English, "meeting of wise men"
Witenagemot of Essex
Witenagemot of England
Yuan Chinese 院 "branch of government"
Legislative Yuan (Taiwan)


  1. In the Christian era, this term was adopted to mean "church" and is the source of the word for church in a number of languages.
  2. The word for "day" came to mean "meeting" probably by analogy with Latin dies, "day," which was incorrectly believed to be the source of the word dieta.
  3. In English, the meaning of the word thing evolved from an assembly, to a matter being considered by an assembly, to any issue at all, to any thing at all. But it kept its original meaning in the Scandinavian languages.