Hammurabi Code History

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Hammurabi’s code has a significant effect on not only laws going back to ancient times, but also on the modern day laws. Although not word for word, pieces of this code are incorporated into modern society. The American code of laws and judicial system is based on many of the same principles of Hammurabi’s code. The United States Supreme Court building built in 1935 actually shows Hammurabi as one of the historic law givers that are on the wall of the court room. (www.history.com) One of the most cherished principles of the American system of criminal justice is that a defendant is innocent until proven guilty. This means that the prosecution must prove, beyond the reasonable doubt that each part of the crime charged. (www.law.cornell.edu) …show more content…
It is believed that Hammurabi’s code was the first set of laws to be written so people could read and understand. The code was inscribed on a seven foot stele which is a large piece of stone. His code was written and displayed to provide laws and punishment to citizens. The rules were able to be used in most aspects of Babylonian life. The written law became so useful that it was referred to many years after Hammurabi’s rule. Hammurabi felt that if he wrote these laws out and people were able to understand them it helped him unify the groups he controlled. (www.livescience.com) In American history, Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1789, "Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government.” This statement is similar to the thoughts of Hammurabi hundreds of years ago. In American history, important documents such as the Declaration of Independence, The Mayflower Compact and The United States Constitution were all written out clearly and the people were educated regarding the rules and the laws. By Hammurabi writing out the laws it set a standard for future generations to properly communicate with their citizens. Both Hammurabi’s code and our present historical documents allowed people to solve problems and understand there place in society. Many of the laws of American society have clear beginnings in the code of Hammurabi but have been changed to fit modern standards.

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