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Code

codes legal system set

Code, set of laws or rules arranged systematically and put in writing. Legal codes have existed for perhaps as long as writing. One of the earliest known codes is that of Hammurabi, the king of Babylonia, 18th century B.C. Roman law was codified in the form of the Twelve Tables around 450 B.C. By A.D. 534 its principles had been refined into the Code of Justinian, which had an enormous influence on later European law. The code Napoléon, formulated in 1804, served as the basis for the legal system of France and its colonies, including Quebec and Louisiana. In communications, code is a set of symbols made to yield information via specified operations. An example is the Morse code in telegraphy, a system of short and long signals in combinations that indicate letters of the alphabet. Codes whose rules are not revealed are often used for secret messages. Decoding these messages is called cryptography.

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