The Code of Hammurabi King of Babylon
This is a complete English translation of the code with a running parallel transliteration of the original ideograms. All corrections and erasures are included. This edition also includes facsimiles of all of the original cuneiform tablets, a...more
It surprised me with some of its humane laws:
If a man has incurred a debt and a storm has flooded his field or carried away the crop, or the corn has not grown because of drought, in that year he shall not pay his creditor. Further, he shall post-date his bond and shall not pay interest for that year.
I mean okay there is capital sentence even for such minor crimes as burgalaries and theft but that is to be expec ...more
A fascinating view into life at the dawn of human civilization. FYI: There is no law thirteen !!!
Some interesting laws:
# 128. If a man takes a woman to wife, but has no intercourse with her, this woman is no wife to him.
# 132. If the "finger is pointed" at a man's wife about another man, but she is not caught sleeping with the other man, she shall ju ...more
No wonder the empire lasted so long. People were shit-scared that their cow might wander into someone else's field!
But jokes aside, this was really enlightening in the sense that I never knew there existed such a well-thought out code of law (albeit a bloody one) to deter theft, vandalism, murder and slander, that hinged above all thi ...more
This code is comprehensive ...more
• agriculture, irrigation canals, tillage, tenancy of land, corn and sesame, orchards, sheep grown for wool (and prey to lions), and allowance for storm, flood and drought
• belief in magic and witchcraft
• doctors and veterinarians (with set fees, and penalties if their ...more
Punishments ranged from paying a fine (in money or goods/animals), to somewhat much more severe, like having a hand cut off, all the way to death. Some of the things I found most in ...more
The Code can be read c ...more
Well, I thought the law that King Hammurabi set upon ...more
On a side note: It' ...more
Damn, Hammurabi didn't play no games with anybody. The laws he imposed scare the living crap out of me.
But one has to remember that's how it was back then. Such cruelty, but such awesomeness at the same time. Shows just how much power he had over people.
It's very interesting in itself as these laws are over 4000 years old. Many of the laws are humorous in either their severity of punishment and/or antiquity. We can gain some insights into the disputes of their culture, some of which still exist today.
For general reading I couldn't recommend this but the laws are interesting nonetheless.
The rule of "An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth" in itself is an incredible concept in early human history: we should keep in mind that we should always punish a criminal for exactly what he's done and not sentence him to a harsher/not harsh enough punishment.
I absolutely loved the final curse at the end for those that deface the stele or forgets the commandments. It was better than anything in the Bible by far, but shows the common cultural threads binding both works.
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...When Marduk sent me to rule over men, to give the protection of right to the land, I did right and righteousness in . . . , and brought about the well-being of the oppressed.
[The oldest known written code of laws from around 1772 BCE]”