Figure Name example
Source Silva Rhetoricae (http://humanities.byu.edu/rhetoric/Silva.htm); Sherry (1550) 88; Garrett Epp (1994) ("exemplum," "paradeigma"); Ad Herennium ("exemplification") (383-385); Vinsauf (1967) ("exemplum"); De Mille (1882) ("exemplum," "example"); Hill (1883); Bullinger (1898) ("exemplum; or, example")
Earliest Source None
Synonyms exemplum, specimen, sample, paradigma, paradeigma
Etymology from L. exemplum “specimen, sample”
Type Trope
Linguistic Domain Semantic

1. Amplifying a point by providing a true or feigned example. (Silva Rhetoricae)

2. The citing of something done or said in the past together with the naming of the doer or author; it is used to render a thought clear, vivid, plausible. (Garrett Epp)

3. Exemplification is the citing of something
done or said in the past, along with the definite naming of the doer or author. It is used with same motives as a Comparison. It renders a thought more brilliant when used for no other purpose than beauty ; clearer, when throwing more light upon what was somewhat obscure ; more plausible, when giving the thought greater verisimilitude ; more vivid, when expressing everything so lucidly that the matter can, 1 may almost say, be touched by the
hand. (Ad Herennium)

4. (Exemplum) There are other figures to adorn the meaning of words. All of these I include in the following brief treatment: when meaning is adorned, this is standard procedure. ... ((11) Exemplum) I present as exemplum, with the name of a definite authority, some statement he has made or some deed he has performed. (Vinsauf)

5 a) 136. EXEMPLUM.
There is no way in which a thing can be stated more clearly and explicitly than where general truths are illustrated by particular examples. The definite is always more forcible than the indefinite; but when both are united, the effect is still stronger. This union is effected when the indefinite appears first in the enunciation of a general statement, which is followed immediately by particular statements in the shape of examples. To this is given the name of" exemplum." (De Mille)

5 b) 248. EXAMPLE.
1. The illustrative style is sometimes characterized by general statements, with particular examples. (De Mille)

6. 3. Example.
(1) Nature of Example.- Among the varieties of argument founded upon resemblance, the simplest, and perhaps, most common is example. The logical analysis of this argument is as follows. We assume, as a major premise, that whatever is true of the case adduced as an example, is universally true in like cases. In the minor premise we assert something to be true in the example. In the conclusion we infer that what has been asserted is true of all like cases. Using this conclusion as a major premise, we assert in the minor that an individual case belongs to the class mentioned in the major, and our conclusion is, that the assertion in the major applies to the individual case.
(2) Invented Examples. - Fictitious cases are often adduced as arguments. They are legitimate in proportion to their verisimilitude. (Hill)

6. (3) Illustrative Examples.- Examples are frequently used merely as illustrations, not to confirm but to explain a proposition. Illustrative examples affirm nothing more than a resemblance, argumentative examples affirm a common cause of which the resemblance is the effect. (Hill)

7. Addition of Conclusion by way of Example. This is not the same as using examples in the course of argument. We do this latter when in any reasoning we adduce one known object or thing as a sample of another in respect to some particular point. Exemplum, on the other hand is when we conclude a sentence by employing an example as a precedent to be followed or avoided. (Bullinger, 482)


2. Eek Plato seith, whoso kan hym rede,
The wordes moote be cosyn to the dede. (GProl 741-42 qtd. in Garrett Epp)

4. ((11) exemplum) Yet it can hardly be that a man may live without fault, whence Cato the moralist says: "No one lives without fault." (Vinsauf)

5. a) " A great writer is a great benefactor. Thackeray has caused many happy hours, and the man who has read Pickwick has received real joy and instruction." (De Mille)

5. b)"The clergy were regarded as, on the whole, a plebeian class; and, indeed, for one who made the figure of a gentleman, ten were mere menial servants... A young Levite-such was the phrase then in use-might be had for his board, a small garret, and ten pounds a year; and might not only perform his own professional functions; might not only be the most patient of butts and listeners; might not only be always ready in fine weather for bowls and in rainy weather for shovel-board but might also save the expense of a gardener or Of a groom. Sometimes the reverend man nailed up the apricots, and sometimes he curried the coach horses. He cast up the farrier's bills. He walked ten miles with a message or a parcel. If he was permitted to dine with the family, he was expected to content himself with the plainest fare. He might fill himself with the corned beef and the carrots; but as soon as the tarts and cheese-cakes made their appearance he quitted his seat, and stood aloof till he was summoned to return thanks for the repast, from a great part of which he had been excluded."-MAcAULAY. (De Mile)

7. Luke 17:31, 32. -"In that day , he which shall be upon the house top, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away; and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back. Remember Lot's wife." (Bullinger, 482)

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Confidence Unconfident
Last Editor Ioanna Malton
Confidence Unconfident
Editorial Notes
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