Greek Language Blog

Justice vocabulary in Greek Posted by on Oct 31, 2016 in Culture, Vocabulary

In Greek mythology Themis (Θέμις) represented the goddess of justice and was respected by gods and humans. Her symbols were the blindfold, the balance and the sword.

By KiltBear under a CC license on Flickr

By KiltBear under a CC license on Flickr


The Greek trial courts are civil (αστικά) or criminal (ποινικά). There are also administrative courts (διοικητικά δικαστήρια) and courts that have specific powers, such as military courts (στρατοδικεία) and navy corps courts (ναυτοδικείο).The three superior courts are the Council of State (το Συμβούλειο Επικρατείας), the Supreme Court (Άρειος Πάγος) and the Court of Audit (Ελεγκτικό Συνέδριο).Άρειος Πάγος (the White Rock) was named after the first court that was established between the 15th and the 13th century BC. It is located northwest of the Acropolis.

In this post, there is vocabulary related to justice.


η δικαιοσύνη: justice

η δίκη: trial

η νομοθεσία: legislation

ο νόμος: law

το δικαστήριο: court

η έδρα: the members of the court

η αίθουσα του δικαστηρίου: courtroom

το εδώλιο: the seat where the defendant sits. We also use the colloquial term σκαμνί which means “stool”.

ο, η δικαστής / ο, η Πρόεδρος: judge. The word πρόεδρος can also mean CEO and president.

ο εισαγγελέας: district attorney

ο γραμματέας: secretary

ο ενάγων / ο μηνυτής: prosecutor

ο κατηγορούμενος: defendant

οι αντίδικοι: litigants

η υπεράσπιση /ο συνήγορος / ο δικηγόρος: solicitor

ο, η μάρτυρας (οι μάρτυρες): witness

ο, η ένορκος (οι ένορκοι): jury member

ο, η πραγματογνώμονας: expert

By Dimitris Graffin under a CC license on Flickr

By Dimitris Graffin under a CC license on Flickr



η αγωγή, η μήνυση: lawsuit

η κατηγορία: charge

το αδίκημα: offense

αγορεύω: to plead

ο όρκος: oath

ορκίζομαι:to take an oath. Every witness must take an oath. Most people take a religious oath: they put their right hand on the Gospel book (Ευαγγέλιο). Τhere is an oath suitable for non-Orthodox and for atheists.

η έφεση: appeal

η αθώωση: acquittal

η καταδίκη: conviction

καταδικάζω ισόβια: to sentence to life imprisonment.


η αναστολή: probation

η απόφαση: ruling

η ετυμηγορία: verdict

η ψευδορκία: perjury

η προφυλάκιση: detention. The maximum detention period is eighteen months.

η ποινή: sentence, penalty

η φυλάκιση: imprisonment

η εγγύηση: bail


Two of the most important trials were the Trial of the Junta (η Δίκη της Χούντας) and the trial of George Koskotas who was involved in one of the most serious financial scandals of Greece. The last person who was sentenced to death was Βασίλειος Λυμπέρης (Vasileios Lymperis) who murdered his wife, his mother-in-law and his children. The death penalty was abolished de jure in 1993.

By History Maps under a CC license on Flickr

By History Maps under a CC license on Flickr










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About the Author: Ourania

Ourania lives in Athens. She holds a degree in French Literature and a Master’s degree in Special Education for Children. Since 2008, she has been teaching Greek to foreigners.