Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

This question asks about the (mostly?) Ashkenazic practice of giving charity in multiples of 18. Another custom I have observed is to give charity in round numbers + 1 e.g. $51, $101, $201 etc. This practice seems to be prevalent in the Syrian and Moroccan communities.

It looks like a gesture of acknowledgment that the cause deserves more than donation being given I'm sure every dollar helps, but is there a Torah-based source for it or is it purely cultural?

share|improve this question
Hello Yitzchak. Interesting question. My former synagogue had a large population of people from the former Soviet Union. Many of them also donated in round numbers plus one. – JJLL Jul 27 '14 at 19:56
This source suggests that it is a custom: chafed.org/library/article_cdo/aid/484894/jewish/…. – JJLL Jul 27 '14 at 19:59
126 also in my experience. – msh210 Jul 28 '14 at 4:10
@JJLL, did you mean chabad.org/484894? But I don't see this there. – msh210 Jul 28 '14 at 4:11
sources for 101 and 201 are gematria of the names of angels. See here judaism.stackexchange.com/a/40802/6641 – user6641 Jul 28 '14 at 13:20

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.