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Revenue and finance

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Chapter Summary

Taxation and finance were vital issues for Jewish communities everywhere, since independent economic subsistence was generally a precondition for the establishment of a community. The basic sources of revenue comprised the contributions of the ba?ale battim, the sale of kosher meat, fees for seats in synagogue and fines imposed as penalties. Due to their importance, financial affairs might be expected to appear prominently in the community records. This is true to some extent, but there were differences between the various communities. By examining the sources of income in the records - taxes, fees, loans and other transactions - an insight may be gained into the way the governors tried to maintain the level of revenue, and to improve their financial situation. The pinkassim of The Hague, Middelburg and Oisterwijk include the reports of the annual accounts. These were almost always called heshbon tzedek.

Keywords: finance; heshbon tzedek; Jewish communities; Middelburg; Oisterwijk; pinkassim; revenue; taxation; The Hague



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