University of Southern California The Hammurabi Code of Laws Discussion


Review the Code of Hammurabi. (Links to an external site.) This is a primary source document translated into English – your job is to read through the 282 laws, and answer the following questions in an essay format.

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Length: 1.5 – 2 pages

Times New Roman

1.5 line spacing

Is all life equally valued? Explain.

Does the code distinguish between the value of life depending on wealth and/or social status? Examples.

What are some of the occupations in the kingdom? Examples.

What can you tell from the code about the social and family structure of Mesopotamia? Examples.

Are there exceptions to the ‘eye for an eye’ laws? Which ones and how are they different?

In what ways is the code better than the laws we have today, and are they similar to our laws or are these codes now non-existent on earth. Explain.