Eucharistia in Latine Gratiarum actio, is a forme of speech, bu which the speaker geveth thankes for benefites received.
An example of Cicero: To thee O Caesar wee give most harty thankes, yea great thankes wee yeeld to thee.
Another of our saviour Christ: Father I thanke thee for that thou hast heard me.
This forme of speech is used much with acknowledging the benefites received, and the unworthinesse of the receiver, whereof we have an example in Jacob the Patriarch, where he saith in these words: “I am not worhty of the least of all thy mercies, and all the truth which thou hast shewwed unto thy servant, for with my staffe came I over this Jordan, and now I have two droves.” Gen.31.10.
Sometime it is joyned with a confession of the unablenesse of the receiver to requite the giver, after the example of David, where he saith: “What shal I give unto the Lord for all the benefites towards me? or, for all the benefites which he hath bestowed upon me?” Psal.16.
The use of this figure.
1. To extoll the goodnes of the giver.
This forme of speec tendeth to two speciall endes, to extoll the goodnesse of the giver by whom the speaker or thankesgiver hath been favoured, relieved, enriched, advaunced, instructed,
2. To declare the gratitude of the receiver.
pardoned or protected. And to expresse the mindfull gratitude of the receiver, who by his giving thankes declareth that he hath neither buried the benefite, nor forgotten the giver, but setting them both before the eies of his mind, acknowledgeth his bounden
3. To commend the benefite received.
duty towardes so great favour and goodnesse with his heart, and to praise him with his mouth.
To give small thanks for great benefits argueth ingratitude
or folly: and contrarisise to yeeld great thankes for trifles betokeneth flattery: To repeat thanks openly without some fit occasion inducing to it, is a point of folly. So in giving thaneks to name the benefites, namely if thy be very small and scarece worth thanks, in an absurdity in the speaker, and a disgrace to the giver: to give scornful thanks for frendly gifts is a most vicked and impudent ingratitude: To give compelled thankes doth accuse the receiver either of ingratitude, or of forgetfulnesse.