SA Y"D 249:

כמה חייב ליתן [לצדקה] וכיצד יתננה:
שיעור נתינתה ... עד חומש נכסיו מצוה מן המובחר ואחד מעשרה מדה בינונית.
וחומש זה שאמרו שנה ראשונה מהקרן
מכאן ואילך חומש שהרויח בכל שנה:

The amount of charity one should give is as follows: ... a fifth of one's property is most laudable. To give one-tenth is the average disposition. ... When they said a "fifth" they meant a fifth of the property the first year only and a fifth of the profits in succeeding years.

What did Hamechaber originally mean by "a fifth of the property the first year" -

  • what's the 1/5 of which property?
  • the first year of what?

Note: I don't ask about the current Halachic trends.


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