The Richest Man in Babylon – Summary and Review

Here is a summary and my review of a classic, “The Richest Man in Babylon”: If you want to find out how The Tenth Part was born… you have to read this book!

A man’s possessions are not found in the bag he carries with him“.

The Richest Man in Babylon

Written by George S. Clason in 1926 in archaic and fascinating English in a somewhat biblical style, The Richest Man in Babylon remains a timeless classic of personal finance.

My overall ranking: 10 out of 10

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The protagonist of the book is the rich Arkad, who through a series of very instructive parables, will teach his friends (and you) how to manage, multiply and create money.

Clason set the book in a very suggestive environment, the ancient kingdom of Babylon, the richest Mesopotamian city of all time although founded in the middle of the desert.

This is no coincidence because the image of wealth that is created out of nothing is exactly what the author wants to instill in your mind: you can be rich, you just have to learn how to do it!

Arkad Is His Name

And Arkad, the richest man in Babylon himself, will explain it to you step by step: how did an ordinary boy become the richest man in all of Babylon, from whom even the king asks for advice on managing the finances of the kingdom and borrow gold in times of trouble?

How could his son Nomasir, without financial help from his father, get away from home and create his personal fortune?

What did he learn from his father?

In wealth management, there are 5 fundamental laws, which – if well understood and applied- allow anyone to obtain abundance and prosperity.

THE book is absolutely to read and to give to all the boys and girls who are about to earn their first money.

I recommend not just dwelling on savings tips (which although they are useful are also quite intuitive) but reading between the lines and trying to embrace the mindset of the successful man who knows how to create his wealth. Therefore, pay particular attention to the engaging stories and anecdotes told in the book.

You will acquire the basis of everything in order to build your own wealth or even just become a better saver.

There are simple concepts and at the same time so underestimated, which represent the key to financial freedom and are regularly ignored by all those who complain of not being able to save.

The Richest Man in Babylon - Italian Version

Summary of The Richest Man in Babylon

The book is divided into two parts: in the first, you will find the stories of the great men of Babylon: the rich Arkad, his son Nomasir, his friends the musician Kobbi and the wagon manufacturer Bansir, the camel merchant Dabasir and the moneylender Mathon.

Arkad, in addition to revealing the 5 fundamental laws of gold, will also reveal to you how it is possible to always keep your bag full.

In the second part, it is instead told how two English archaeologists, finding some ancient clay tablets on which Dabasir had told his story, decided to use his teachings to finally free themselves from old debts.

The book ends with Sharru Nada’s enlightening parable on the value of work.

To Conclude

The Richest Man in Babylon lasts less than 200 pages, you can read it in a day or two, but it won’t be enough for you to read it once!

And you will certainly understand what it means to “don’t ask a brickmaker for advice on jewelry!”

Have you already read The Richest Man in Babylon? What do you think? Write it in the comments!

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10 thoughts on “The Richest Man in Babylon – Summary and Review”

  1. Fantastic review of the book “The richest Man in Babylon”. This has always been on my reading wish list and just haven’t picked it up to start reading but after your review I feel compelled to read it next! Do you feel you have lived by the principles in this book your whole life or do you feel that only recently have you picked up and implemented some of the philosophies as of late?

    • Hi Daniel!

      I have been following the principles of the book for about 11 years now, and this has allowed me to pay for college and start investing in small amounts. T

      The advice I usually give is not to read it once, but to take it up again after some time to make sure you understand it well and put into practice what it teaches!

      Glad my review made you want to read it!

  2. I read the shorter version of this book some years ago, and it’s somewhere in storage. I’m not sure if I truly understand his principles at times, and I’m sure I haven’t followed them.

    Did you find it hard following them yourself?

    I’m glad you reviewed this book; I do remember enjoying reading the shorter version.

    • Hi Yvonne!
      As for saving 10% of your salary every month, I admit that it is easy for me and for years now I have been able to put away even 15% without any difficulty. What for me is a bit tougher is the investment part, because I am not a big risk lover and this leads me to small gains.
      Instead, life has taught me that asking for advice only from those who know more than you is essential, and it avoids you looooads of mistakes!

  3. Thank you for reviewing this excellent little book. I have read it and have my own copy, but after reading your review, I will go and read it again. It’s a excellent account of how anyone can accumulate a fortune.

    Sometimes a concept will resonate with a reader and cause him to accept the concept and try to include it in his own life. This book gives you what you need to know to get his ideas to work for you.

    • That’s right, Fran!

      I have read many books on the psychology of money, but I fell in love with this from the first time!

      Every now and then I reread it because there is always something more to keep in mind!

  4. Thanks for a great review. I have never heard of this book and I generally read a lot. I take it this is a motivational read tied up in a story line. Would that be correct? It look as if it teaches you how to save your money and I am guessing this could be the 10% rule. Save 10% of everything you make. 
    I wish these types of books were introduced to school children as some foundation in teaching children the basic concepts of making and saving money. Is it a difficult book to read?

    Thanks for a great review 


    • Steve,

      you understood very well!

      The first rule taught by the book is to put away 10% of your earnings first, and then, in the form of parables, it teaches you how to invest, how to make money … etc …

      In English, the book, being from 1926, is written with a somewhat “archaic” style and at first reading, it can be slightly difficult for those who are not great readers. But being divided into stories and short-lived, even children can understand it!

      I absolutely agree with teaching the content of these texts in school!

  5. This book is an absolute must-read!
    It is very easy to read as well, and I have listened to it in audio as well and it fits perfectly. It’s told as a story which makes it very easy to follow.

    Some very good habits to follow and a good guide of what not to do as well.

    Thanks for the review!

    • Thanks, Lee for your comment!
      It’s true, “The Richest Man in Babylon” offers some great ideas to learn how to manage your money and it’s great to give to a young person who is starting to earn his/her first money!


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