From Academic Kids

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This diorite head is believed to represent king Hammurabi
Hammurabi (also transliterated Hammu-rapi or Khammurabi) was the sixth king of Babylon. Achieving the conquest of Sumer and Akkad, ending the last Sumerian dynasty of Isin, he was the first king of the Babylonian Empire.

Hammurabi reigned over Babylon and the Babylonian Empire from 1792 BC until his death in 1750 BC (short chronology). Hammurabi expanded the rule of Babylon by first conquering cities towards the south before his conquest expanded to cover most parts of Mesopotamia. His military conquests came late in his reign, perhaps brought on by the fall of Shamshi-Adads empire.

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The upper part of the stela of Hammurapis' code of laws

He is perhaps best known for promulgating his code of laws, known as the Code of Hammurabi. This was written on a stela and placed in a public place, so that all could see it (even though very few could read). This stela now stands in the Louvre museum. While the penalties of his laws may seem cruel to modern readers, the fact that he not only put into writing the laws of his kingdoms, but attempted to make them a systematic whole, is considered an important step forward in the evolution of civilization. The "innocent until proven guilty" idea comes from his laws.

Hammurabi did other things in order to make Babylon a better place, such as helping to improve the irrigation process.

Following Hammurabi's death, the Babylonian Empire collapsed due to military pressure from the Hittites, led by their king Mursilis I. However it was the Kassites, led by their king Agumkakrine, who eventually ruled Babylon. Although there were many rebellious cities, the Kassites ruled for 400 years, and respected the Code of Hammurabi.

Some religious scholars relate Hammurabi to Nimrod, who had similar military exploits. In addition, the name Hammurabi or Khammurabi could be interpreted as 'Ham the great'. According to biblical legend, Nimrod was the grandson of Ham son of Noah.

See also

Preceded by:
Kings of Babylon Succeeded by:

de:Hammurapi es:Hammurabi eo:Hamurabi fr:Hammourabi hr:Hamurabi it:Hammurabi he:חמורבי la:Hammurabi nl:Hammurabi nds:Hammurabi ja:ハンムラビ pl:Hammurabi pt:Hamurabi fi:Hammurabi ru:Хаммурапи zh:汉谟拉比 sv:Hammurabi


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