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On Humanity, Chapter 9

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Chapter Summary

Granting the hungry right of entry to one's land in order to gather residual agricultural produce seems to have been a tradition in many ancient societies. The so-called Farmer's Almanac, for instance, advises Sumerian farmers to leave needy children and gleaners enough fallen kernels to sustain themselves during the harvest. The Hebrew of Lev 19:9a specifies a certain "corner" that is to be reserved for the poor and the alien. In describing the dynamics of euergetism, it is possible to make a distinction between benefactors, who control the resources of benefaction, and brokers, intermediaries who channel gifts to their beneficiaries.

Keywords:agricultural produce; Lev 19:9; poor



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