2.1 from Laws of Hammurabi
The document that I chose to write about was the laws of King Hammurabi. Let’s start with a little history and background on King Hammurabi. Hammurabi is a very famous king, who is the first ruler of the Babylonian empire, and he holds the distinction of restoring order and justice to Mesopotamia. He is widely famous for writing the 282 laws to govern family, criminal punishment, ethics, civil law, trade, and all other aspect of ancient life. However, Hammurabi called it “The code of Hammurabi” and placed it strategically where everybody could read the laws. The laws that were set by King Hammurabi were sometimes simple but very complicated. These laws were set for people who were ignorant, disrespectful, and those who committed crimes. Now, some laws you might not agree with or understand but for the most part they were self-explanatory. For example one of his laws state that “If a man's wife, who lives in his house, wishes to leave it, plunges into debt, tries to ruin her house, neglects her husband, and is judicially convicted: if her husband offer her release, she may go on her way, and he gives her nothing as a gift of release. If her husband does not wish to release her, and if he takes another wife, she shall remain as servant in her husband's house.” This law is simple because it’s stating that if the husband announces their divorce she may be sent to the dungeon (jail). If the husband doesn’t announce the divorce he shall have another and the ex-wife is their servant. However, in today’s time we have similar situations. If a man and woman want to divorce they must do it legally and more times than not the property and other assets will be split between him and his ex-wife. Neither the husband nor the wife would be allowed to remarry legally until the divorce is finalized. As we have seen, the main ideas behind the code were 1.) By writing them in stone it became immutable, and 2.) By posting the codes out in the open for everybody to see there would be no excuse for ignorance or violence. The one theme that stuck to me was the idea of “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth” (page 5). This statement made Hammurabi meant that punishment should be similar to the crime committed. As we've learned, physical mutilation was one common option for punishment whether that meant a child's hands or a woman's breasts cut off. Death was another punishment. The code explicitly mentions about 28 crimes that warrant death, including robbery, adultery and casting spells of witchcraft Punishments often depended on the social status of the perpetrator.
In my analysis you will see that my