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Word Count: 461
Perhaps the most remarkable and influential creation of its time Hammurabis code is the oldest set of laws known to exist Hammurabi king and chief priest of Babylonia from 1792-1750 BC expanded his empire greatly before focusing his energies toward wealth and justice for his people Hammurabi created a code protecting all classes of Babylonian society including women and slaves This great leader sought protection of the weak from the powerful and the poor from the rich The carving on the stone on which the code is written depicts Hammurabi receiving the divine laws from the sun god the god most often associated with justice This stone was unearthed by French archaeologists at Susa Iraq ancient Elam in 1901-02 The black diorite rock is 24 m high and had been broken into three pieces Hammurabis Code is 44 columns of text 28 paragraphs of which contain the actual code There are 282 laws possibly more have been rubbed off that probably amend common Babylonian law rather than define it The code describes regulations for legal procedure fixed rates on services performed in most branches of commerce and describes property rights personal injury and penalties for false testimony and accusations The code has no laws regarding religion The Code of Hammurabi is significant because its creation allowed men women slaves and all others to read and understand the laws that governed their lives in Babylon Women during this era had a good role in society but they could not determine whom they would marry Divorce was possible only if both parties agreed Women were allowed to own land and hold political positions but they were tasked with the caring of the young Women were greatly respected after all they were the source of fertility Hammurabis Code is unique in that laws of other civilizations were not written down and thus could be manipulated to suite the rulers that dictated them The Code is particularly just
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