Probably wayyyy before the Babylonian Empire. In Genesis 11 we read the curious account of the Tower of Babel in the "plains of Shinar" (which was also called "Babylonia" even in that day). The text tells us that they shared a common language and they determined that they would build a mighty Tower into the sky (thought to be a ziggurat) and "make a name" for themselves). Ziggurats were usually foul places of human sacrifice and enslavement (seems to be the case whenever archeologists have dug them up, throughout the world).Since the days of Babylon?
The humans engaged in that way, were inclined to centralized authority under brutal, absolute kings/satraps/suzerains, etc. where there was unquestioned obedience, on pain of death. We see in the Book of Esther, that the Persians had made it "illegal" to even approach the King unless he called for a person. Esther could have died for going to see the King of Persia (her husband) unbidden. That's why God told Samuel to tell the Israelites that they didn't want a King, outlining the peril they would face were they to decide on having a king (which they apparently ignored).
Decentralized authority is much safer for the average person, but those who would aspire to rule as despots liked central authority (controlled by them) as well as hereditary concentration of wealth. God's system of government was decentralized. To prevent the concentration of wealth, He had ordered that the families of Israel were to permanently retain ownership of the land (wealth) divided up by divine decree. It really wasn't possible for some of the sharper inhabitants to bilk those who were guileless, out of their land. In the Year of Jubilee, all debts were cancelled and the land portion returned to the family who had mortgaged it.
When a nation rejects Christ as their King, they, sooner or later, fall into the hands of a ruling class, who typically become more and more intolerant of dissent and that inevitably lead to cruel oppression and despotism. Under wholly righteous King Jesus, there will be a flowering of peace and plenty--such as this world has never seen since the Fall. True humility consists of understanding our inability to cause perfect honour, truth and justice to rain down from the throne, such as will be the case with our Righteous King, Jesus.