Hammurabis Code - Is It Just?

The code that was created to protect others

Where it all started

Back from 1792 - 1750 B.C King Hammurabi ruled over the Babylonian Empire. Here, Hammurabi decided that he needed to have a list of rules for everyone that would hold all of the laws and punishments. This became the Hammurabi Code. While writing 282 laws in all, they were organized into sections that were labled trade, labor, property, family, adopting children, practicing medicine, hiring wagons or boats, and a category for controlling dangerous animals.

Hammurabi's Code Takes a More Fair Route

Hammurabi's code is just! In different Hammurabi Code documents, the means of the laws were to help and protect people. Laws 215 and 218 for example. Law 215: " If a surgeon has operated with a bronxe lancet on a free man ... and saves the man's life, he shall recieve 10 shekels of silver". Law 218: " If a surgeon has operated with a bronze lancet on a free man for a serious injury, and caused his death, ... his hands shall be cut off." This surgeon must also know that he has a man's life in his hands and that it's up to him to help the man. Now, it may seem a little harsh to cut off someones hands, but back then, cutting of someones hands may be our way of sueing or getting very mad at the person who caused the death. For law 215 though, saving a man's life and recieving 10 shekels of silver can be our way of getting paid for savings someones life and for doing our job. Their punishments may seem harsh to make sure that if a person wants to break the law, that they will be scared away by the punishments, in which the law they wanted to break could've done harm to someone else. This way, Hammurabi was just technically protecting others and the weak with the Hammurabi Code. So what do you say - because I say this code is just! The code told people how to settle conflicts, the laws had to be fair.

To make more sense of the punishments that could be sometimes harsh, we see that, " The higher the class of the victim, the greater the penalty was." If someone rich, which would be a high class of people, had terribly broken a law, they couldn't possibly afford to pay off more then what they have. Someone poor has a smaller and less chance of being able to pay off a big amount of money. Hence, a person who broke a law on accident was just as guilty as someone who meant to break the law. It's a mans and womens decision to act how they plan to.