Hammurabi was the sixth king of Babylon from 1792 BC to 1750 BC. He became king after his father abdicated, and was the first ruler of Babylonia. By winning wars against other kingdoms in Mesopotamia, Hammurabi created a large Babylonian empire. However, his son Samsu-iluna and later Babylonian rulers lost much of the land he had gained.
Hammurabi is most famous for his laws, which are known as the Hammurabi’s Code. Hammurabi’s Code was one of the first written codes of law in history.
- If any one steal the property of a temple or of the court, he shall be put to death, and also the one who receives the stolen thing from him shall be put to death. (6)
- If a son strike[s] his father, his hands shall be cut off. (195)
- If a man put out the eye of another man, his eye shall be put out. (196)
- If he break another man’s bone, his bone shall be broken. (197)
- If he put out the eye of a freed man, or break the bone of a freed man, he shall pay one gold mina. (198)
- If he put out the eye of a man’s slave, or break the bone of a man’s slave, he shall pay one-half of its value. (199)
- If a man knock out the teeth of his equal, his teeth shall be knocked out. (200)