|The Code of Hammurabi
The Code of Hammurabi is a well-preserved Babylonian law code, dating back to about 1772 BC. It is one of the oldest deciphered writings of significant length in the world. The sixth Babylonian king, Hammurabi, enacted the code, and partial copies exist on a human-sized stone and various clay tablets. The Code consists of 282 laws, with scaled punishments, adjusting "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth" depending on social status, or slave versus free man.
One half of the Code deals with matters of contract, establishing, for example, the wages to be paid to an ox driver or a surgeon. Other provisions set the terms of a transaction, establishing the liability of a builder for a house that collapses, for example, or property that is damaged while left in the care of another. A third of the code addresses issues concerning household and family relationships such as inheritance, divorce, paternity and behavior. Only one provision appears to impose obligations on an official; this provision establishes that a judge who reaches an incorrect decision is to be fined and removed from the bench permanently. A handful of provisions address issues related to military service. Hammurabi ruled for nearly 43 years, from about 1792 to 1750 BC. One of the most well known of Hammurabi's laws is: #196. If a man put out the eye of another man, his eye shall be put out. Hammurabi had many other punishments as well. If a boy struck his father they would cut off the boy's hand or fingers.
ACCOUNTABLE TALK (literacy focus) ASSIGNMENT #1:
Write a paragraph (accountable talk) that makes either a pro or con statement about the Code of Hammurabi and either how cruel or fair it was. Support your paragraph's topic sentence with three supporting details from your library research. The three sources must be cited at the end of the paragraph in MLA format.
Your paragraph's topic sentence (thesis) could be stated like this:
"Although the laws and punishments were harsh, the Code of Hammurabi was a just set of laws for the Babylonians."
"Due to the severity of the consequences, the Code of Hammurabi wasn't a just set of laws for the people of Babylonia."
Create a MeigsMail link and share it to Mr. P (as can edit) titled "PRO/CONcodehammurabi." The "pro" or "con" part of the title will be determined by the thesis statement.
[PDF]: Pro/Con assignment
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