Hammurabi Hammurabi reigned B. One of the outstanding rulers of early antiquity, he is especially known as a lawgiver, the author of the code which bears his name. Nothing is known of the early life of Hammurabi.
It is best known from a beautifully engraved diorite stela now in the Louvre Museum which also depicts the king receiving the law from Shamash, the god of justice. It encodes many laws which had probably evolved over a long period of time, but is interesting to the general reader because of what it tells us about the attitudes and daily lives of the ancient Babylonians.
What do these laws tell us about attitudes toward slavery? What indication is there that some Babylonian women engaged in business?
Clearly men had more rights than women in this society; but what laws can you identify that seem aimed at protecting certain rights of women? Anu and Bel called by name me, Hammurabi, the exalted prince, who feared God, to bring about the rule of righteousness in the land, to destroy the wicked and the evil-doers; so that the strong should not harm the weak; so that I should rule over the black-headed people like Shamash, and enlighten the land, to further the well-being of mankind.
If any one take a male or female slave of the court, or a male or female slave of a freed man, outside the city gates [to escape], he shall be put to death. If any one receive into his house a runaway male or female slave of the court, or of a freedman, and does not bring it out at the public proclamation of the [police], the master of the house shall be put to death.
If any one be too lazy to keep his dam in proper condition, and does not so keep it; if then the dam break and all the fields be flooded, then shall he in whose dam the break occurred be sold for money, and the money shall replace the [grain] which he has caused to be ruined.
If he be not able to replace the [grain], then he and his possessions shall be divided among the farmers whose corn he has flooded. If a [woman wine-seller] does not accept [grain] according to gross weight in payment of drink, but takes money, and the price of the drink is less than that of the corn, she shall be convicted and thrown into the water.
If conspirators meet in the house of a [woman wine-seller], and these conspirators are not captured and delivered to the court, the [wine-seller] shall be put to death. If a man bring a charge against [his] wife, but she is not surprised with another man, she must take an oath and then may return to her house.
If a woman quarrel with her husband, and say: If she is not innocent, but leaves her husband, and ruins her house, neglecting her husband, this woman shall be cast into the water.
If a son strike his father, his hands shall be [cut] off. If a [noble-]man put out the eye of another [noble-]man, his eye shall be put out. If he put out the eye of a [commoner], or break the bone of a [commoner], he shall pay one [silver] mina. If a man knock out the teeth of his equal, his teeth shall be knocked out.
If he knock out the teeth of a [commoner], he shall pay one-third of a [silver] mina.
In future time, through all coming generations, let the king, who may be in the land, observe the words of righteousness which I have written on my monument; let him not alter the law of the land which I have given, the edicts which I have enacted; my monument let him not mar.
If such a ruler have wisdom, and be able to keep his land in order, he shall observe the words which I have written in this inscription; the rule, statute, and law of the land which I have given; the decisions which I have made will this inscription show him; let him rule his subjects accordingly, speak justice to them, give right decisions, root out the miscreants and criminals from this land, and grant prosperity to his subjects.Video: Hammurabi of Babylon: Code, Summary & Stele Learn about Hammurabi, the ruler of Babylon, and the code of laws that he created.
Explore the oldest written law code in the world, and learn about the giant stones the code was inscribed on. Babylonia was an ancient empire renowned for the law code of Hammurabi and the Babylonian religion. Babylonia was an ancient empire renowned for the law code of Hammurabi and the Babylonian religion.
The Babylonian Law Code of Hammurabi. Search the site GO. A Look At Sumer in Ancient History. Learn Something New . The Code of Hammurabi was one of the earliest and most complete written legal codes, proclaimed by the Babylonian king Hammurabi, who reigned from to B.C.
Hammurabi expanded the city-state of Babylon along the Euphrates River to unite all of southern Mesopotamia.
The Code of Hammurabi is a well-preserved Babylonian code of law of ancient Mesopotamia, dated back to about BC (Middle Chronology). It is one of the oldest deciphered writings of significant length in the world. The sixth Babylonian king, Hammurabi, enacted the code.
A partial copy exists on a metre ( ft) stone stele. The Code of Hammurabi is the most frequently cited cuneiform document in specialized literature. Its first scholarly publication in led to the development of a special branch of comparative jurisprudence, the study of cuneiform law.
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