Ancient Babylonia - Law Codes

BAR1.gifBAR1.gif

BAB9.gif A number of documents from Babylonia called Law Codes have been recovered and the fact that these contain parallels with biblical and modern law has evoked considerable interest in modern scholarship. The documents in question are:

The Laws of Urukagina (Sumerian, 2350 BC),

The Laws of Ur-Namrnu (Sumerian, 2112-2095 BC),

The Laws of Lipit-Ishtar (Sumerian 1934-1924 BC),

The Laws of Eshnunna (Babylonian, 1900 BC), and

The Code of Hammurapi (Babylonian, 1792-1750 BC).

Although three of the texts are in Sumerian there is a clear relationship and frequently verbal agreement among all of them, reflecting a continuous literary tradition. With the exception of the Laws of Eshnunna, they are all written in the form of a royal inscription. This fact indicates that they are not legal codes at all and this observation is corroborated by other features, namely the lack of consistency and the fact that the documents are neither comprehensive nor are they ever referred to in the abundant records of actual legal proceedings of the time. Rather, they are collections, within the framework of royal inscriptions, of independent legal decrees issued by various kings to meet specific problems. Collections of these, of which the Laws of Eshnunna is one example, were continuously copied, added to, and elaborated upon. From time to time these were put into royal inscriptions as a boast by the king that he had fulfilled his divine mission to administer his people justly and fairly.

Babylonia Scroll




Ancient Babylonia
Ancient Babylonia
by R. Russell

2 Kin 24:13-14 "And Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon carried out from there all the treasures of the house of the LORD and the treasures of the king's house, and he cut in pieces all the articles of gold which Solomon king of Israel had made in the temple of the LORD, as the LORD had said. Also he carried into captivity all Jerusalem: all the captains and all the mighty men of valor, ten thousand captives, and all the craftsmen and smiths. None remained except the poorest people of the land."

Also see: Ancient Babylonia Map

Fall of Babylon Heart Message

BAR1.gifBAR1.gif

Glossary

Introduction

History of Babylonia

Old Babylonian Period (2000 - 1595 BC)

The Amorites, Isin and Larsa, Hammurapi of Babylon, Classical Period, The Language, Religion Law Science and the Arts, Babylon, The KassitesThe People of the Sealand, The Hittite Kingdom

Middle Babylonian Period (1595 - 1000 BC)

The Kassite Dynasty, Kadashman-Enlil I and Burnaburiash II, Kurigalzu II, Elam and Assyria, Dur Kurigalzu a New Capital, The Kudurru, Nebuchadnezzar I, The Aramaeans, The Culture

Neo Babylonian Period (1000 - 539 BC)

Assyria, Nabu-nasir, Tiglath pileser III, The Babylonian Chronicles, The Chaldeans, Sennacherib, Ashurbanipal, Nabopolassar, Nebuchadnezzar II, The Fall of Babylon

Literature

Sumerian Origins, Schools of Scribes, Numbering Tablets, Aramaic and Greek, Poetry, Music, Myths, The Gilgamesh Epic, The Babylonian Flood Myth, Biblical Flood, Prayers and Hymns, Wisdom Literature, Prophecy, Cuneiform

Religion

Marduk and his son Nabu, Babylonian Gods, Temples and Rituals, Priests, Personal Idols, Divination, Astrology, Extispicy, The New Year's Festival, Morality, Prayers and Hymns, Prophecy

Law and Justice

Shamash the Sun God, Civil Law, Law Codes, Hammurapi and Retaliation, Code of Hammurapi Text, Legal Disputes, Labor, Criminal Law, Prisons Slaves and Women, Legal Documents

King and State

Monarchy, The King's Palace, The King's Harem, Communication, Roads, Scribes, Nebuchadnezzar II

Economy and Social Structure

Houses and Farms, Irrigation, Artisans, Manufacturing, Trade, Social Hierarchy, Family and Tribe, Domestic Relations, Schools

Science

Scientific Knowledge, Astronomy, The Calendar, Mathematics, Medicine, Nature

Archaeology

Gilgamesh Tablet, The Hammurapi Stele, Ancient Map, Clay Model of a Sheep's Liver, Mathematics Tablet, Sheeps Liver Cuneiform, Seal Impression, Israelite Seal to Pedaiah, Clay Cylinder of Nabopolassar, The Striding Lion, The Ishtar Gate, The Dragon of Marduk, Nebuchadnezzar's Babylon, The Babylonian Chronicles, Basalt Block Inscription, The Ziggurats, Nabonidus Stele, Cyrus Cylinder

Biblical History

David Anoints Solomon, Solomon's Choice, Solomon's Temple, God's Ideal King, The Divided Kingdom, The Northern Kingdom Israel, The Southern Kingdom Judah, Judah's Kings, Hezekiah, The Destruction of Jerusalem, The Babylonian Captivity, Daniel and the Prophets, Nebuchadnezzar, The Return from Babylon

Questions about Babylon Answered in the Bible

Maps

Timelines


© Bible History Online (http://www.bible-history.com)

BAR1.gifBAR1.gif

Ancient Babylonia

Return to Bible History Online

Related Content