To tithe is to make a contribution equal to one-tenth of your income, usually to a church or religious institution. Devout church-goers usually tithe, even in years when their finances are very tight.

Tithe comes from the Old English word teogotha, which means “tenth.” To tithe is to relinquish one-tenth of your personal income, either as a mandatory contribution, a voluntary donation, or as a levy. In ancient times farmers were required to tithe a portion of their crops. You may suspect that some of the wealthiest members of your church don’t really tithe as expected.

Definitions of tithe

n a levy of one tenth of something

Type of:
a charge imposed and collected

n an offering of a tenth part of some personal income

Type of:
money contributed to a religious organization

v pay a tenth of one's income, especially to the church

“Although she left the church officially, she still tithes
Type of:
give money, usually in exchange for goods or services

v pay one tenth of; pay tithes on, especially to the church

“He tithed his income to the Church”

v exact a tithe from

“The church was tithed
Type of:
bill, charge
demand payment

v levy a tithe on (produce or a crop)

“The wool was tithed
Type of:
impose, levy
impose and collect

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