During the later years of the Sumerian Empire, a group of Amorites settled in a small upriver town called Babylon. Over the course of the next hundred years, Babylon developed a prowess at warfare that would eventually lead to control over all of Mesopotamia.
This was ultimately achieved under their sixth King, the first to actually rule over an empire. Known as Hammurabi, he ruled from approximately 1780-1750. Aside from establishing hegemony over Mesopotamia after the collapse of the Sumerians, the biggest contribution of Hammurabi's reign seems to be the Codification of Law in written form. Formally known as the Code of Hammurabi, it continued to be observed by Babylonians long after Hammurabi was gone from the scene.
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