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I was fascinated by a passage in Thomas F. Madden's Venice: a New History describing the complex process used to elect the doge of Venice. This process is explained briefly here:

Wikipedia: Doge of Venice - Selection of the Doge

Thirty members of the Great Council, chosen by lot, were reduced by lot to nine; the nine chose forty and the forty were reduced by lot to twelve, who chose twenty-five. The twenty-five were reduced by lot to nine and the nine elected forty-five. Then the forty-five were once more reduced by lot to eleven, and the eleven finally chose the forty-one who actually elected the doge. None could be elected but by at least twenty-five votes out of forty-one, nine votes out of eleven or twelve, or seven votes out of nine electors

This passage does not include some elements of the proces mentioned by Madden, such as the interesting presentation and voting on the nominations for doge by the final 41, the automatic exclusion of relations from remaining draws once someone is chosen by the lot, or the use of small wax balls with parchment inside for the lot drawing process.

There is also more detail in a paper cited in the Wikipedia posting found here:

Electing the Doge of Venice: analysis of a 13th Century protocol (PDF)

My question is whether the Venetian system inspired similar systems in other states or political bodies (let us say, before the 19th century) or were there other similar multi-stage selection processes for positions in other contemporary or early cases?

Here by cases, let us be flexible, as there are not a lot of republics etc. around. It might include voting process for council positions, guild leadership, etc. I especially welcome well-sourced answers.

share|improve this question
There are actually quite a few republics. (Note, not all of those are still existing) – American Luke Jul 14 '13 at 21:17
Thanks @American Luke - That is a great link. It depends on what we mean by "quite a few" and by "republic" but that is a fantastic starting point for a potential answer (and lots of interesting cases there I'd never heard of, like the fascinating republic of Cospaia). I only meant "not a lot" relative to the huge number of non-republics out in the early modern period. – kmlawson Jul 14 '13 at 22:15
I started to look for systems bases on sortition and the Wikipedia article has an interesting sentence: "The Doge of Venice was determined through a complex process of nomination, voting and sortition." I think that a good starting point could be to use this three concepts in a search (I would do it but I'm busy today, I hope it helps). en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sortition – Gil Oliveira Aug 1 '15 at 16:11

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