Toll (מַדָּה, Ezr 4:20, or [Chald.] מַנַדָּה, 4:13; 7:24, tribute [so called from being measured or apportioned], as Ne 5; Ne 4) is strictly a tax for passing along a highway or other thoroughfare. SEE TAX; SEE TRIBUTE. In the Roman period taxes were collected along the roads or along the navigable waters by the postiloces, or custom-house officers. There was also a class of publicans who had houses or booths built for them at the foot of bridges, at the mouth of rivers, and by the seashore, where they took toll of passengers that went to and fro. For this purpose they used tickets or seals, which, when a man had paid toll on one side of a river, were given him by the publican to show to him that sat on the other side that it-might appear he had paid. On these were written two great letters, larger than those in common use. Modern Oriental usages illustrate the custom referred to in Mt 9:9. Arriving at Persepolis, Mr. Morier observes, "Here is a station of rahdars, or toll-gatherers, appointed to levy a toll upon kafilahs, or caravans of merchants, and who in general exercise their office with so much brutality and extortion as to be execrated by all travelers. The collections of the toll are farmed, consequently extortion ensues; and, as most of the rahdars receive no other emolument than what they can exact over and above the prescribed dues from the traveler, their insolence is accounted for, and a cause sufficiently powerful is given for their insolence, on the one hand, and the detestation in which they are held on the other. Baf-gah means the place of tribute; it may also be rendered the receipt of custom, and perhaps it was from a place like this that our Savior called Matthew to follow him." SEE CUSTOM, RECEIPT OF. At Smyrna the miriji sits in the house allotted to him, as Matthew sat at the receipt of custom (or in the custom-house of Capernaum), and receives the money which is due from various persons and commodities entering the city. "The exactions and rude behavior of these men,'" says Mr. Hartley, "'are just in character with the conduct of the publicans mentioned in the New Test. When men are guilty of such conduct as this, no wonder that they were detested in ancient times as were the publicans, and in modern times as are the mirijis." SEE PUBLICAN.

Bible concordance for TOLL.

Definition of toll

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

Topical Outlines Nave's Bible Topics International Standard Bible Encyclopedia Online King James Bible King James Dictionary

Verse reference tagging and popups powered by VerseClick™.