This chapter begins by critically analyzing definitions about fund raising, including definitions of the function itself, definitions of the process, and definitions of gifts. Stressing the importance of a basic knowledge of philanthropy, the late Maurice Gurin said that such knowledge is needed by fund raisers “for guidance in advising and assisting organizations in seeking and accepting gift support”. In-house fund raisers, on the other hand, are usually involved in the solicitation of gifts. Fund raising and philanthropy are often used interchangeably in the fund-raising literature. In addition to briefly examining definitions of public relations, the following discussion provides a historical perspective that helps explain why current definitions of that function frequently conflict with the views commonly held by fund-raising practitioners and scholars. To differentiate between charitable organizations and to clarify the role of altruism in fund raising today, the chapter presents a typology of organizations for which fund raisers solicit and accept gifts.