Burgesses, House of


Burgesses, House of
Representative assembly in colonial Virginia, the first elective governing body in a British colony.

It was one division of the legislature established in 1619 by the colonial governor at Jamestown; the other included the governor himself and a council, all appointed by the colonial proprietor (the Virginia Company). Each Virginia settlement was entitled to elect two delegates, or burgesses (citizens of a borough in England). See also London Co.

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▪ Virginian government
      representative assembly in colonial Virginia; the first elective governing body in a British overseas possession. The assembly was one division of the legislature established by Gov. George Yeardley at Jamestown, July 30, 1619; the other included the governor himself and a council, all appointed by the colonial proprietor (the Virginia Company). Because each Virginia settlement was entitled to elect two burgesses (delegates), the original membership of the house was 22.

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Universalium. 2010.

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