(redirected from tither)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Financial.
Related to tither: hither and thither


1. Christianity a tenth part of agricultural or other produce, personal income, or profits, contributed either voluntarily or as a tax for the support of the church or clergy or for charitable purposes
2. any levy, esp of one tenth



the tenth part of a crop (or other incomes), taken from the population for the support of the clergy and church.

In ancient times, the tithe existed among many Semitic peoples, particularly the Jews, and was passed on to the western Christian Church. The Christian Church first demanded the tithe in 585, citing the Bible. Beginning in 779 the tithe became obligatory for the entire Prankish kingdom. The Catholic Church, which levied the tithe in the Middle Ages, took both grapes and grain (the so-called great tithe), garden and industrial crops (the small tithe), and live cattle and animal produce (the blood tithe). The tithe was canonically divided into one-third for the upkeep of church buildings, one-third for the clergy, and one-third for the paupers of the parish. With the development of feudal relations, however, the tithe became almost completely levied for the benefit of the high church officials. The heaviest burden was on the peasantry, the upper classes often being spared payment.

Complete elimination of or limitations on the tithe were included in the demands of many peasant uprisings. In France the tithe was abolished in 1789-90, and in other countries during the 19th century. In Rus’, the tithe (desiatina) was established during the tenth century by Prince Vladimir Sviatoslavich; later, the church was given the right to collect fines in cases adjudicated by the church court instead of collecting the desiatina, but in certain cases various church organizations, although not the monasteries, continued to levy the desiatina. It was finally abolished at the end of the 19th century.

In Islam, the zakat is the functional equivalent of the tithe.

References in periodicals archive ?
All three were banned from attending matches, Mills for 10 years, Thompson for six years and Tither for three years.
Divided into three short booklets, Berggren's work takes the reader on a tour of the Psalms from the perspective of a committed tither.
The court heard IT supervisor Tither, 22, of Cedar Avenue, Stalybridge, had been so traumatised by his arrest and prosecution that he had sold his United season ticket and never again intended to go to a football match.
One highly successful business leader expressed his experiences with the service phenomenon, saying, "I'm a tither to my church and have been for about 25 years.
Peter Tither, who paid online firm Noble Titles PS2,000 for lofty Lord of the Manor status, believes he is still a commoner.
Christian Ray Tither had been carrying the blade - which he said he used to cut mats during games - in his bowling bag following an afternoon spent playing the sport.
Our coach Andy Tither has been preparing for a fortnight for last weekend''s battle," Worsley said before the game.
Iris Tither, a friend of Mrs Martin for more than 50 years, said the pensioner was a strong-minded woman who despite deteriorating health, remained a woman of forceful opinions.
The room darkens, a screen comes down and a projector unreels dish-dashed Arab, Muslim, figures running hither and tither.
He recalled: "PJ would get himself into a complete tither - he thought he should feel like that before he did a gig and I can understand what he meant because some people if they don't feel really nervous they sort of think they shouldn't be there.
John Tither, 35, of Dane Street, L4, charged with breaching a community order - six weeks imprisonment.