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Compare and Contrast: Hittites and the United States of America

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The Hittites and the United States of America have a lot of differences and similarities. For instance, in the land of the Hittites, there were hot summers and cold winters with lots of snow. Most of the U.S. has similar weather patterns, while places like Florida and Hawaii has tropical weather, and Alaska has arctic weather. However, weather is only one of the many things that the land of the Hittite and the U,S, have many similarities and differences to.

Like the U.S., the Hittites kept of the tradition of agriculture. Both civilizations grew crops like barley and wheat for trade or for themselves. However, the U.S. trades these crops for money while the Hittites traded their goods for other, more exotic goods. The Hittites would only trade their goods for seals if they were trading within their neighborhood. These seals usually have a religious motif, although some geometric types have been found. Different castes had different types of seal, to limit trading options.

As for law, the Hittites had overthrown the Babylonians and had inherited the Code of Hammurabi. However, they formulated a set of laws which were much more humane that that of Hammurabi. Like the U.S., capital and corporeal punishments were strictly limited to just a few situations, and specific payments were substituted instead. A crime of theft or damage was punished with compensation and additional fine. Other offenses were recompensed by a fine of money, usually silver. However, unlike the U.S., the Hittites didn’t lock people up for any amount of time.

The Hittites learned cuneiform from the Babylonians and passed the art of writing on clay tablets to Crete. Like the U.S., the Hittites wrote from left to right – but then unlike the U.S., the Hittites would reverse the next line to right to left, and so on. The Hittites’ spoken language, Hurrian, is one of the strangest languages in the Near East. While of the Indo-European language family (which includes English, German, Greek, Latin, and Persian), it has an agglutinative character unlike the others.

Between the years 1300-1200 BCE the Hittites and Egyptians warred upon one another until both were physically and financially drained. Once the war ended, the empire of the Hittites slowly deteriorated. Shortly after, the capital city of Hattusas was sacked and burned, marking the end of the Hittite Empire, c.1200 BCE. Not including the war, a majoring factor to the Hittites’ demise was the loss of the secret of iron smelting. One big difference between the Hittites and the U,S, here is that the Hittite civilization failed – while the U,S, is still standing tall.

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