History of Law

Arjun Kohli

Code of Hammurabi

-Created by Hammurabi, king of Babylon

-It is the oldest known set of laws, and contains approximately 282 laws

-Laws are manually carved into stone pillars

-The code provides protection for everyone in society, which includes women, children and slaves

-Laws were organized into sections including military service, slavery and trade

-One of the most well known examples is "An eye for an eye"

Code of Hammurabi Importance

The Code of Hammurabi is a very important part of the history of law as it was the first group of structured laws to exist and have an impact on society. The core of the code is a list of almost 300 laws that address many aspects of daily life, from medical malpractice to the proper fees for the hire of an ox, ferryboat, or day laborer. People believed these laws came from god, and just like today, the overall majority supported the placement of these laws in an organized society

Mosaic Law

People believed that these laws were passed through Moses

Contained 613 laws (365 negative & 248 positive), the moral code, the social code, and the ceremonial code

Similar to Hammurabi's Law Code

Said that Moses received the Ten Commandments from God and are the first part of the Mosaic Law

Often included sacrifice and harsh punishments

Mosaic Law Importance

The Mosaic Law was god telling man that he could not live righteously. Man could not exist without failing, falling, and sinning. Whether by action or omission man is incapable of living 100% righteously. Like everything else in the history of man, we cannot be told something and adhere to it completely. If we learn at all, it is by failure, our own or someone else, is irrelevant. We had to try and fail to live righteously with the Mosaic Law and fail for generations just to prepare us for the arrival of Christ. Even then we had the Pharisees and self righteous who couldn't get it. Even now there are those among who do not fully understand that we cannot live righteously and need a Savior but without generations of effort with Mosaic Law it would have been more difficult for man to grasp what "righteous" truly was, what "unfailing" and "perfect" actually meant. Mosaic Law was a means of showing how much we fail so that we could better understand how great God's love and forgiveness is for us to overlook our many constant shortcomings.
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Roman Law

-Had public and private law

-Concerned with the relationships between people, their legal actions, and their rights

-Males usually took the role of the lawyer/legal person

-Roman Law was the basis for the Napoleonic Code, which is still used today

Importance of Roman Law

Roman law is important to the history of law as this is when the role of the lawyer was created. It was also where the basis for our modern day law system began. It relates to the creation of Canada's laws as this formed the basis for the Napoleonic Code, as well as the Justinian Code. The Napoleonic Code was is used in Quebec.
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Turning Points in History - Hammurabi's Code of Laws