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Top 10 Oldest Recorded Laws by Region

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Support our efforts to make videos about what we want: https://www.patreon.com/toptenz/overview Check my other channel TodayIFoundOut! https://www.youtube.com/user/TodayIFoundOut →Subscribe for new videos every day! https://www.youtube.com/user/toptenznet?sub_confirmation=1 Find more lists at: http://www.toptenz.net Entertaining and educational top 10 lists from TopTenzNet! Subscribe to our Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TopTenz/ Business inquiries to [email protected] Other TopTenz Videos: Top 10 Facts The Mormon Church Doesn’t Want Its Members To Know https://youtu.be/kdyyjXcPCyY 10 Historical Dinner Party Hosts from Hell https://youtu.be/pByMr4QEnTE Text version: https://www.toptenz.net/top-10-oldest-recorded-laws-region.php Coming up: 10. The Code of Ur-Nammu (Mesopotamia, ca. 2,380-2,360 BC) 9. The Code of Hammurabi (Babylonia, ca. 1786 BC) 8. The Code of the Nesilim (Hittie Empire, ca. 1650-1500 BC) 7. 42 Negative Confessions (Egypt, ca. 1250 BC) 6. Kang Gao (China, ca. 11th Century BC) 5. The Draconian Constitution (Greece, ca. 7th Century BC) 4. Torah (Judaism, ca. 600-400 BC) 3. Dharmasutras (India, ca. 600-100 BC) 2. Twelve Tables of Roman Law (Rome, 451 BC) 1. The Omi Code/Asuka Kiyomihara Code (Japan, 668 AD/689 AD) Source/Further reading: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Code_of_Ur-Nammu http://www.gutenberg.org/files/17150/17150-h/17150-h.htm http://books.google.com/books?id=5M00CwnZ9rIC&pg=PA7&dq=Code+of+the+Nesilim&hl=en&sa=X&ei=INfNUeuYIYX69gTf6YCwBA&ved=0CEkQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q=Code%20of%20the%20Nesilim&f=false http://books.google.com/books?id=zrBnOgHEMX8C&pg=PA41&dq=42+Negative+Confessions&hl=en&sa=X&ei=W-LNUaq_MYSw8QSX9YFQ&ved=0CDkQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=42%20Negative%20Confessions&f=false http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traditional_Chinese_law#Early_development http://books.google.com/books?id=86WroFz_zRgC&pg=PA464&dq=draco+constitution&hl=en&sa=X&ei=p_DNUauDOpH08ATbloAQ&ved=0CD8Q6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=draco%20constitution&f=false http://web.archive.org/web/20160108001907/http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Judaism/The_Written_Law.html http://books.google.com/books?id=gnVxqvPg9a0C&pg=PR24&dq=dharmasutras&hl=en&sa=X&ei=OjLOUcSAM47I9gTWgIGwCg&ved=0CDYQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=dharmasutras&f=false http://www.csun.edu/~hcfll004/12tables.html http://books.google.com/books?id=NnsEAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA169&dq=The+omi+Code&hl=en&sa=X&ei=nAzOUc3bNoPs9ASx8ICgAQ&ved=0CD8Q6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=The%20omi%20Code&f=false
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Text Comments (195)
Nathan Callidor (9 days ago)
IS it not true that the Sumerian migrated from the Scythian people and that is why they had established laws and social structure almost right away?
Ekim Yazici (1 month ago)
İf İ were in power, i would have but one law; taken from the 12th negative confession of 42, which is "You shall make none to weep (physically or otherwise)." Pretty much covers everything. lol
Andreas Ferm (1 month ago)
Thank you for adding the list in the description. I appreciate it.
Robert Tinsley (3 months ago)
I was looking forward to the earliest European laws, sadly lacking in this video.
Just Smashing (3 months ago)
Surely the Law of Jungle is oldest :)
Robert Rauch (3 months ago)
Can we say BCE please? You can't really appeal to "BC" and then expect to be credible.
Robert Rauch (3 months ago)
+Saint Dragon face palm. I am sure you want people to worship your gods, but obviously you have to be a zealot to think it is necessary for everyone to do it.
Saint Dragon (3 months ago)
+Robert Rauch That a claim.
Robert Rauch (3 months ago)
+Saint Dragon it is for religious zealots only.
Saint Dragon (3 months ago)
Also the BCE and CE is still using the Christian calendar.
Saint Dragon (3 months ago)
What wrong with using BC and AD?
Bahador Soori (3 months ago)
, what about Cyrus cylinder in Persia ....?!
Tomasz Klisz (3 months ago)
Here at 4 in the morning. Ughh
StukaJi86 (3 months ago)
B.C ??!!! as a asexual volleyball that identifies as a jehova's witness's pizza pie, i find that term extremly offensive.
Ice Karma (3 months ago)
Question marks instead of characters, not just in the captions, but that last card, too? =/
Elizabeth Shaw (4 months ago)
You cannot be a civilization without laws.
OperationBaboon (4 months ago)
There is no evidence outside the bible that moses existed. maybe stay more on the facts and less on the made up stuff? also, maybe use BCE and CE instead of the christian count, makes you look less biased.
Saint Dragon (3 months ago)
"There is no evidence outside the bible that moses existed." Why does that matter? "maybe stay more on the facts and less on the made up stuff?" What is the Torah made up stuff? "also, maybe use BCE and CE instead of the christian count, makes you look less biased." How is using BC and AD make you biased? Care to explain that?
Mike Beglin (4 months ago)
Moses did not exist.
Saint Dragon (3 months ago)
Why does that matter?
Gawaine Ross (4 months ago)
I love you Simon! You're great!
Alice Willoughby (4 months ago)
About how much was a shekel worth? (and did you mean skekels or shekels?) Innocent until proven guilty and the upper classes punished more severely! This sounds like a MUCH better system than so many that history has had! The idea that being lazy or stealing a #%&*ing apple could bring down the same penalty as murder is pretty horrifying! I realize that if someone didn't do their fair share of the harvesting, or whatever, it could have a negative affect (effect?) on the whole community and that if they stole an apple it might have been the only food the person they stole it from had to last several days, but still... !
Daniel Johnson (4 months ago)
Ur-nammu, I've come to bargain.
ulisesroine (4 months ago)
How about the Konami code.
Alistair 1924 (4 months ago)
Can you stop using bc, it is supposed to be referred to as b.c.e. known as Before Common Era. It is how history is supposed to be taught as to separate Christianity from history implying definitive proof of a Christ figure.
grumpy sod (4 months ago)
Yeah, yeah, go PC all you want, no one gives a damn.
Hemant parakh (4 months ago)
Old Laws should be open for practice under the Antique-Function Rule
Collin Hennessy (4 months ago)
I wonder if the Nesilim were the Nephilim spoken of in the Bible.
Mike Beglin (4 months ago)
Kevin Horton (4 months ago)
How stupid I felt "Draconian" has nothing to do with the order of the dragon.
J.C Davis (4 months ago)
Just discovered this channel.
Chris Parker (4 months ago)
I think you meant tenets, not "tenants".
Nancy Allen (4 months ago)
Thank you so much!! You post great things!!
Shah King (4 months ago)
You forgot Pashtunwali..
benway23 (4 months ago)
Damn, yeah that was interesting. Thank you for your work.
Mike Donovan (4 months ago)
Ithought it was going to be old laws still on the books which would be unlikely to get passed today.
immortal9922 (4 months ago)
Why did you not say Babylon or Mesopotamia Modern day Iraq
Lon Johnson (4 months ago)
I'd be interested in seeing the top 10 oldest laws that are still in use. I'm not referring to laws that have analogs deep in the past, such as laws against murder or stealing, but laws that were written centuries ago (I doubt there are many that have survived millennia outside of religious institutions) and are still on the books and practiced today.
Daniel Staal (1 month ago)
+Jeff T English law would probably throw a wrench into 'oldest laws still in use', actually - The Common Law in theory goes back to before the Magna Carta, but it's all precident and judicial decisions. You could probably cite a decision from 1100AD in an court in the USA - but in nearly all cases you'd be better off citing a more recent decision, even if it was based (tracked back) to the same original decision.
Jeff T (4 months ago)
Lon Johnson The Magna Carta might be one of the documents to look at.
Steeljaw XXI (4 months ago)
I still find that all of these fall short of Judge Dredd.
Carolien (4 months ago)
A little escape from reality. How very well said! Thank you Oddie!
Michael Szilagyi (4 months ago)
Number 7: didn't the Aztecs have similar laws about their slaves
Irritable Fuhrer (3 months ago)
Ahh. You mean they the right to be tied, bled, beheaded for sacrifice if caught.
Eucenor (4 months ago)
Just asking,on what basis do you rank them?
rgerber (4 months ago)
1:38 the first Darth Vader mask in history
rgerber (4 months ago)
Top 10 Facts TopTenz got it's facts straight
Jon Bastian (4 months ago)
Hm. I don't seem to see any mention of the Americas in here. Oops.
Jon Bastian (3 months ago)
+bowblizz I was referring to the laws that existed long before Europeans came over -- and they did exist, in the many and various cultures that were here in Pre-Colombian America -- Aztec, Inca, Toltec, Maya, Navajo, Cherokee, Zuni, Guayaqil, etc., etc. Some of those, at least, might pre-date post Carolingian laws, and definitely pre-date the Magna Carta.
bowblizz (3 months ago)
Jon Bastian thats because the Americas are still a lawless wasteland where money is the judge.
Jon Bastian (4 months ago)
+Arthur Van Rodds But the Asian laws mentioned all post-date that migration, and there's not a lot of resemblance between, say, Mayan or Incan law and Chinese law.
Arthur Van Rodds (4 months ago)
it says 'oldest', many settlers in the Americas where people migrating from Asia
griffen98 (4 months ago)
Thank you for this incredibly interesting video
griffen98 (4 months ago)
Thank you incredibly interesting video
Chris Wilkes (4 months ago)
Annoying voice!
em1o smurf (4 months ago)
i knew of some of this through passing through the SE asia region, but your in-depth quick education was astounding. well done!
Autumn Entertainment (4 months ago)
Turned my phone upside down so his head looks the right way up :p
Michael Krämer (4 months ago)
"Skeckels"... wow 😂
Johnathan Blackwell (4 months ago)
Damn, I'm thinking Draco had it right, would really clean up our society.
SgtSupaman (4 months ago)
2:30 You know you misspelled 'Hittite', right? There is no "Hittie Empire".
AARON WOODLEY (4 months ago)
Nailed the out tro!
Nyar 23 (4 months ago)
Very interesting video, thanks a lot! The cuneiformist is pleased :)
Mr K F (4 months ago)
I done a wonderful thing today!..... I watched this video :)
Andrew Morse (4 months ago)
We didnt have any laws until 4500 yrs ago we would just kill you if you done wrong before then,so we had no laws it more like guidelines i would say
Owain Shebbeare (4 months ago)
Well we have no known written laws prior to this period.
Andrew Morse (4 months ago)
How about...10 of the oldest laws still being used today...Great vid as always simon
Benson (4 months ago)
My cat dislikes your list. Needs more dog-ma
Owain Shebbeare (4 months ago)
Then it would be a legat catastrophe, like modern courts.
Necko Agic (4 months ago)
Moses? The old testament guy that probably never even existed... At least we have no evidence he did.
Saint Dragon (3 months ago)
+SlyPearTree *people
Kevin Horton (4 months ago)
one can only demand so much proof. Hamurabi might have been a prankster shepherd boy, (like joseph smith) but you gotta start somewhere.
Michael Lemay (4 months ago)
I first read this as "Top 10 Oldest Recorded Laws by Religion" and was incredibly intrigued.
mysticx0 (4 months ago)
ah-ss-ka not ah-su-ka.
Owain Shebbeare (4 months ago)
You do realise that exact pronunciations for many ancient tonges are not precisely known, and likely varied as much as modern language pronunciations do today among individuals, cultures and regions? I know there is a sort of petty arrogance and self-satisfaction associated with correcting it, especially online, but try and keep it under control. Tom-ay-to, tomato!
Ashfaq Sheikh (4 months ago)
Another well-researched and informative video. Could you please do an episode on top ten reasons and laws for divorce in modern and ancient times?
geo neo (4 months ago)
REALLY? NO LAWS?? Okay, so we’ve been in existence for over 200k years but haven’t had any laws since 4,500 years ago. Tell me what is wrong with this picture? You have to ask yourself this question... Do scientist have the timeline wrong or have they completely lost their minds?? It makes no sense whatsoever that humans would be in existence for that long and NOT have any evidence of laws dating anywhere near that long ago.
Wintermute (1 month ago)
+Sean McDonald I think he's implying that given the great antiquity of the human race and some evidence of earlier civilizations that collapsed at the end of the last ice age, that there are much older precursors and laws.
Tom Tom II (4 months ago)
The 1850's were pretty much lawless.. I hear.
Jeff T (4 months ago)
The oldest law was “keep the big guy happy.” But nobody saw a need to write that down.
Alice Willoughby (4 months ago)
geo neo, it may depend on how you define law. Even if there were not clearly stated laws as such, there were probably some actions that would still bring down a penalty of some kind from one's community. Kill someone -- especially someone well-thought-of in the community -- and you could probably count on your neighbors to beat the hell out of you, drive you out of the community or at least look the other way if someone from your victim's family came after you for vengence.
flare 156 (4 months ago)
Well the thing is nobody wrote those laws and preserved them so that we can find those laws in the future all of these law codes probably were influenced by existing law codes centuries before and simply copied them it wasn't until agriculture became a thing that we had cities and laws to govern citizens perhaps since cities were trading centres their laws would have been more or less about trade rights mixed with human rights for better trade after all if you don't have to worry about getting robbed killed or sent to prison your going to trade with those cities
Chef_PC (4 months ago)
I laughed out loud at “Man as a civilized species...”. Lol. :D
Youcant Stopme! (4 months ago)
+Brett Robinson That's what a insane person would think. Your a problem.
Brett Robinson (4 months ago)
I say ; lobotomies for all! We'll civilize man yet!😶👫👥👭👤
John Dunkelburg (4 months ago)
It almost seems that these are listed in reverse order.
Christel Headington (4 months ago)
You Don' get BC & AD ?
Jared Quinney (4 months ago)
Samantha Koval (4 months ago)
Another super interesting video, well done! Simon I'd love if you'd consider saying humankind instead of mankind. Language matters, let's include everyone :)
Anthony O'Donoghue (4 months ago)
Humankind, womankind, beastkind? Mankind is easier to say, he's British like me n we're lazy with our language I'm certain he's not sexist 😜
ixsicness (4 months ago)
Samantha Koval you are the left wing equivalent of a trump supporter
Andrew Simmons (4 months ago)
Samantha Koval you’re kidding right?
Donny Boon (4 months ago)
Gordon Lawrence (4 months ago)
The writer of the 10 commandments could not have got these off the Egyptians for a very simple reason - Genesis at least pre-dates 1250BC by a minimum of 50 years. Specifically there is mention of Abraham buying the plot for Sarah's tomb from the Hittites and the deeds to the land being in the east gate of the city. The Hittites were the only people to not store the deeds in the city centre temple and the Hittites were no longer in the area Abraham was residing in 1300BC. It is also proof that the Torah was written way before 600BC because that detail was only re-discovered in modern times and until fairly recently the Hittites were believed to be a myth as all mention of them apart from in the Bible had vanished by about 800BC. It was only some 30,000 Babylonian cruciform texts that detailed trading with the Hittites found in the 20th century that proved the Bible was correct on that point after all.
Sonja Morrison (4 months ago)
Why are you dong this? Worried-about something?
Rand Huso (4 months ago)
I found the Ur-Nammu code to be more tolerant and closer to modern morals than the later one of Hammurabi. I wonder if the Babylonians were less civilized than the earlier Sumerians?
MachineMan1992 (4 months ago)
+Cariss Stewart May had something to do with his founding of an empire. If he's meant to govern over a large group of diverse people, it's seems like a smart move to drop the hammer early to prevent civil unrest from forming.
Cariss Stewart (4 months ago)
Hammurabi was a grouch.
Cariss Stewart (4 months ago)
+immortal9922 Babylon = Sumerian + Akkadian. The Assyrian empire existed to the north.
immortal9922 (4 months ago)
Babylon = sumerian +assyrian
pain 2hands (4 months ago)
law of hunger. if "body" =="hungry",go find something to eat. programmed into my brain.
Erland Devona (4 months ago)
You never find something to eat?
Matthew Gooding (4 months ago)
Oh, I bet they'll start with the Code if Hammurabi. *sees the Code of Ur-Nammu* HELL YEAH
Sara Teubert (4 months ago)
Lol, you must be either a lawyer or a historian.
BlueFrostedGlass (4 months ago)
I didn’t see the “No Backsies Law” in this video?
Jim Fortune (4 months ago)
4,500 years ago is the oldest we know about.....
Jim Fortune (4 months ago)
+Arif R Winandar That's what it said in the title, but not what he said in the video.
Arif R Winandar (4 months ago)
The title literally said "Top 10 *Recorded* Laws".
Jim Fortune (4 months ago)
+blacksmith67 0:15 It's not in the description, it's in the video.
blacksmith67 (4 months ago)
+Jim Fortune He said nothing of the sort. Just read the video's title.
Jim Fortune (4 months ago)
+Paul Ryan My point is that he's saying there was no law before that, whereas the truth is that we have not yet found any record of law older than that.
Mike Mc (4 months ago)
Love the religious top 10!
Paul Ryan (4 months ago)
Title is " The 10 Oldest Recorded Laws by Region " ... not by religion.
Steve Martino (4 months ago)
Jimmy Scaneli (4 months ago)
Your videos are so amazing and informative, keep it up Simon!
Jimmy Scaneli (3 months ago)
Blind Truth I wasn’t aware! Thank you!
Blind Truth (3 months ago)
We should give a thank you to Nathanial Hood who actually wrote this, Simon is a great host though always clear in his delivery and easy to understand.
AManOfManyFaces (4 months ago)
And not one mention about In-laws.
Alice Willoughby (4 months ago)
AManOfMayFaces, Boooo!!! That was bad!
Dodgy Cookies (4 months ago)
+Perplexion Dangerman What?
Perplexion Dangerman (4 months ago)
1. Thou Thou   2. Thou shall not act like your wife.~First laws of caveman
Ken Fulton {Baby Elder} (4 months ago)
Simon looks like Johnny Sins
Mathieu Leader (4 months ago)
I bet the Sumarian laws will be mentioned
El Hombre de oro (4 months ago)
It's 'Ur' not 'arr'.
Christel Headington (4 months ago)
Arr was a pirate civilization.
Lucky Pradhan (4 months ago)
Yo am the no one
anneeq008 (4 months ago)
Dam wasn't first 😒 Keep up these videos btw, each one of them is just as interesting as the previous 👍
James Ryan (4 months ago)
Some laws I just cant understand why they were made or even still in effect.
Teresa Vides (4 months ago)
+thanks what are the hateful things in the Bible about women?
thanks (4 months ago)
+holoholo haole no ka oi the filthy Bible is too
holoholo haole no ka oi (4 months ago)
James, the filthy quran is full of hateful laws against women and children
Hanif Huzairi (4 months ago)
You mean, Christian & Islamic laws? Yeah, they both originated as brainwashing hypocritical cults which sadly endured the test of time and became globally accepted as "mainstream religions"
F.B.I (4 months ago)
LOOK BEHIND YOU (4 months ago)
Early to first
Jade Ralston-Lloyd (4 months ago)
Just James (4 months ago)
1st lol

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