Horysmos is a forme of speech by which the Orator declareth the proper pith of some thing, and it is chiefly used, when there is a difference sought for between two words, which by defining, this findeth foorth.
1 An example: This is not fortitude but temeritie, for fortitude is a contempt of perils by honest reason: temeritie is a foolish enterprise of perils, without respect of vertue.
2 Cicero for Marcus Marcellus: for neither is this to be counted thy life, which is contained in thy bodie and breath, but that is thy life (O Caesar I say) which shall live and floorish in memorie unto the worldes end, which posteritie shal nourish, which eternitie shall ever behold.
3 Glorious victorie consisteth not in slaying of poore people, as women, children, and impotent persons, which hunger and famine, wherein resteth neither fortitude, prudence, nor pollicie, but in subduing of couragious Captaines, overcomming of valiant souldiers, and winning of strong and mightie Cities. To this distinction, a lyke answer is made, a glorious victorie consisteth not so much in crueltie as in humanitie, not so much in shedding of blood, as in shewing of mercy. Fire doth consume, & the sword doth devour, but famine by litle and litle maketh tame the most puissant nations and stoutest people of the world.
By this exornation also a word or an action, is eloquently distinguished in degrees by certaine generall wordes, thus: To powre forth thy curse against thy adversary is malignity, against an innocent crueltie, against thy parent impietie, against God blasphemie.
Another example: To refute good counsell is folly, to contemne it is wickednesse, to scorne it is madnesse.
The use of this figure.
This figure is most apt and excellent to distinguish between betweene words or matter of nie affinitie, or to separate one thing from another by particular definitions of each thing, whereby everie
severall matter is evidently expressed, plainly distinguished, and
brightly adorned with the shyning beames of glorious eloquence.