Threnos is latine Lamentatio, and Luctus, is a forme of speech by which the Orator lamenteth some person or people for the miserie they suffer, or the speaker his owne calamitie.
An example of the Prophet Jeremy: “O that my head were full of water, and mine eyes a fountain of teares, that I might weepe day and night, for the staine of the daughter of my people.” Jerem.9.
The greatest part of Jeremies lamentations, is framed by this forme of speech.
Job lamenteth his owne miserie in this maner: “Why died not I in the birth? Why did not I perish assoone as I came out of the wombe? Why set they me upon their knees? Why gave they me sucke with their brests?” Job.3.
The use of this figure.
As the use of this figure riseth from the feeling of miserie, so it
serveth and is most forcible and mightie to move pittie and compassion in the hearer.
As this forme of speech is most passionate, so ought it to be most
serious and voyd of fiction & faining, for counterfait lamentation
doth seldome move pitie, for it is commonly berayed or
knowne either by the cause
or by the person, by ye cause, as fained lamentations in Tragedies, by
the person, and that teither by his condition, or by some signes of
his affection, by his condition, as the lamentations of common
beggers, which are commonly
2. Lamentation of common
counterfaited, by signe of affection, as when the
speaker expresseth a lamentable matter with a cold or careless
Also heed ought to be taken that the lamentation be not great when the
cause is litle, or litle when the cause is great, the one of
is found in
children lamenting for litle losses, the other in stoicall nature or