'Duumvirate' redirects here. For the Roman offices held by duumvirs, see Duumviri
Not to be confused with coregency
, any temporary joint rule over a monarchy.
For leftist political theory, see Dual power
Look up diarchy
in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.
(from Greek δι-
, "ruled")[note 1]
(from Latin duumvirātus
, "the office of the two men")[note 2]
is a form of government characterized by corule
, with two people ruling a polity together either lawfully
or de facto
, by collusion and force. The leaders of such a system are usually known as corulers
particularly referred to the system of shared rule in British India
established by the Government of India Acts 1919
, which devolved some powers to local councils, which had included native Indian representation under the Indian Councils Act 1892
. 'Duumvirate' principally referred to the offices of the various duumviri
established by the Roman Republic
Both, along with less common synonyms such as biarchy
are now used more generally to refer to any system of joint rule or office. A monarchy
temporarily controlled by two or more people is, however, usually distinguished as a coregency
The captains regent
: Capitani Reggenti
) of San Marino
are elected every six months by the Marinese parliament, the Grand and General Council. They serve as heads of state and government and are normally chosen from opposing parties.
After the 2019-2021 political crisis
, the Basic Law of Israel's government underwent a major change. A system of two prime ministers, that can be appointed at the same time by the Knesset
, was established.
However, during the term, the government's roles and duties are divided between the two prime ministers and each one of them is entitled to appoint and remove ministers without the other's interference.
The office of king in ancient Sparta
was divided between two kings from separate dynasties, each holding a veto
over the other's actions.
The historical duumviri
were not rulers but magistrates, performing various judicial, religious, or public functions.
originally possessed a system of dual kingship, with religious authority vested in the kende
and military authority vested in the war-chief
). It is believed that when the kende Kurszán
was killed c.
904 a little after the arrival of the Hungarians in Pannonia
, his role was usurped by the war-chief Árpád
, establishing the Hungarian monarchy. It is not known with certainty whether Árpád was originally the kende or the gyula.
, the emperor
was notionally a supreme spiritual and temporal lord who delegated authority for joint rule to the shōgun
. In practice, the shōguns'
power was so complete that they are usually considered de facto
monarchs rather than viceroys
Between 1642 and 1751, political power in Tibet
was shared between the 5th
, and 7th Dalai Lamas
who headed the realm's Buddhist state religion
and various secular rulers known as desis. The growing power of the desis caused the 7th Dalai Lama to abolish the post and replace it with a council known as the Kashag
, permitting him to consolidate his authority over the realm. A similar system arose in Bhutan
, with the Wangchuck governor
) of Trongsa
becoming the Druk Desi
and Druk Gyalpo
in 1907. In contrast to Tibet, the dynasty eventually consolidated its power and now rules as the kings of Bhutan.
Under that act, the executive was to be headed by a governor appointed by the Secretary of State, who could consult the Governor General. The governor was responsible to the Secretary of State for acts of omission and commission. He was to maintain law and order in the province and ensure that the provincial administration worked smoothly. In respect of transferred subjects, he was to be assisted by his ministers whereas reserved subjects were to be administered by the Governor General and his executive council.
The members of the Executive Council were to be appointed by Secretary of State and were responsible to him in all matters. There were certain matters that he was to administer at his own discretion, in which he was responsible to the Secretary of State. Each councillor was to remain in office for a period of four years. Their salaries and service conditions were not subject to the vote of provincial legislature. All decisions in the council were to be taken by a majority of votes, the Governor being able to break ties.
During the establishment of the modern state of Samoa
in 1962, power was shared between the two chiefs Malietoa Tanumafili II
and Tupua Tamasese Meaʻole
. Meaʻole died the next year, after which the country functioned as a monarchy until the death of Tanumafili and a republic thereafter.
The status of monarchs is sometimes impugned by accusations of corule when an advisor, family member, lover, or friend appears to have taken too great a hand in government. Lü Buwei
in Chinese history and François Leclerc du Tremblay
in France are famous examples of "éminences grises
" who controlled much of their countries' policies. In British history, George VI
's reign was mocked as a "split-level matriarchy
in pants" owing to the supposed influence of his mother, Queen Mary
and his wife Queen Elizabeth
Informally shared power
Owing to Confucian
notions of filial piety
, Chinese and Japanese emperors were sometimes able to 'retire' but continue to exert great influence over state policy. In Indonesia
and his vice president Mohammad Hatta
were nicknamed the Duumvirate (Dwitunggal
), with Sukarno setting government policy and rallying support and Hatta managing day-to-day administration. More recently, the great influence of Vladimir Putin
over his successor Dmitry Medvedev
was considered a duumvirate
until Putin's resumption of the office of president established him as the greater figure.
Within electoral politics, governments, coalitions and parties may sometimes have two fairly equal leaders, as with:
In addition to actual sharing of political power between religious and military leaders, as occurred in Tibet and Bhutan, the great soft power
of a religious leader such as the Pope
of the Catholic Church
over a devout country can sometimes be described as a form of diarchy or corule.
The Kingdom of Eswatini
is a diarchy in which the King
) rules in conjunction with his mother, the Queen Mother
) in their capacity as traditional rulers. Constitutionally, however, the King is the sole head of state, though it is often argued that the giving of authority wholesale to the royal male in this way is a neo-traditionalistic as opposed to truly traditional custom.
- Umbar, in the works of J. R. R. Tolkien, was ruled by a duumvirate.
- The Omaticaya, the Na'vi clan at the center of the film Avatar, are traditionally led by a pair of married tribal chiefs. One of them, the husband, oversees political and military matters while the other one, the wife, is in charge of spiritual and otherwise ceremonial affairs.
- The orbital colony New New York, in the Worlds trilogy by Joe Haldeman, is jointly governed by an elected Policy Coordinator and Engineering Coordinator.
- ^ Occasionally misspelled dyarchy, as in the Encyclopaedia Britannica article on the colonial British institution.
- ^ Occasionally in the mistaken form duovirate.
- ^ The pun 'tandemocracy' particularly refers to the Putin–Medvedev diarchy, as it is a calque of Russian tandemokratiya (тандемократия).
- ^ "di-, combined form", OED.
- ^ a b c "diarchy, n.", OED.
- ^ "Dyarchy", Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2009.
- ^ a b "duumvirate, n.", OED.
- ^ "co-ruler, n.", OED.
- ^ "biarchy, n.", OED.
- ^ "A Revolution in the Nursery", The Telegraph.
- ^ "Russian Politics: Is Kudrin the Cure for Putin's 'Tandem Malaise'?", Open Democracy, retrieved 6 May 2012.
Last edited on 18 June 2021, at 09:02
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