“And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus, saying, May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is?”
King James Version (KJV)
17:19 The Areopagus, or hill of Mars, (dedicated to Mars, the heathen god of war,) was the place where the Athenians held their supreme court of judicature. But it does not appear he was carried thither as a criminal. The original number of its judges was twelve; but afterward it increased to three hundred. These were generally men of the greatest families in Athens, and were famed for justice and integrity.
Ac 17:19 Brought him unto Areopagus. The Greek term for Mars' hill. See Ac 17:22. The hill was a place of assembly. There the supreme court of Athens met. There the courts that sat concerning religious matters convened. The associations had something to do, probably, with Paul being taken here to speak, though the meeting was informal and not official. The hill is about fifty feet high, and was then surrounded by the most glorious works of art in Athens.