The Roots of Giving

347 B.C.

Plato

Plato's will left his farm to a nephew with instructions the proceeds be used to support students and faculty at the academy he founded.

Source: "Issues and Opportunities in Endowment Fundraising", Philip M. Purcell, Planned Giving Resource Center for the Central Indiana Community Foundation

113 B.C.

Pliny the Younger

Pliny the Younger offers to contribute 1/3 the sum needed to build a new school to help educate children in Rome rather than sending them abroad. He urges their fathers to make up the difference, saying "You cannot make your children a more handsome present than this, nor can you do your native place a better turn. Let those who are born here be brought up here, and from their earliest days accustom them to love and know every foot of their native soil."

Source: About.com