consciousness of an unborn child.
The high value placed on unborn human life in the Bible is consistent with the Mosaic law regarding negligent miscarriage (Exod. 21:22–25). This law can be compared to similar statutes in the Code of Hammurabi (nos. 209–214) in which the punishment exacted for acts of negligence that resulted in a woman’s miscarriage was dependent on the legal or social status of the mother, not the personhood (or supposed lack thereof) of her unborn child. Middle Assyrian law no. 53 (12th century B.C.) made a self-induced miscarriage (an abortion) a capital offense.
Paul H. Wright, "Abortion", in Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, ed. Chad Brand, Charles Draper, Archie England et al., 10 (Nashville, TN: Holman Bible