This article describes the ancient Jewish practices, codified in Biblical law and later legal commentary, to protect the needy. The Jews’ anti-poverty measures - including regulation of agriculture, loans, working conditions, and customs for sharing at feasts - were a significant development in the jurisprudence of charity. The first half begins with a brief history of ancient Jewish civilization, providing context for the development of charity by exploring the living conditions of the poor. The second half concludes with a description of the Jewish laws, Mishnah and Talmudic commentary, as well as the practice and codification of Rabbinical teaching that establish a jurisprudence of charity. The conclusion posits that this ancient jurisprudence is the root of the American modern philanthropic idea, identifying modern equivalent practices to those of the Hebrews.
- Jewish law,
- exempt organizations,
- social welfare,
- legal history
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/william_byrnes/3/