Partitio, is a form of speech by which the orator divideth ye whole into parts. Salomon divideth his whole knowledge thus: “for he hath geven me the true knowledge of the things that are, so that I know how the world was made, & the powers of the elements, the beginning, the end & middest of times, how the times alter, and the change of seasons, the course of the yeare & situation of the starres, the nature of living thigns, the furiousnes of beastes, the power of the winds, the imaginations of men, the diversities of plants, and vertues of roots, & all things both secret and knowen do I know: for wisedome the worker of all thinges hath taught it me.” Sap. 18.104.22.168.20.
In like manner he reckneth up, & rehearseth the parts of his prosperity in the 2. chap. of his booke called Ecclesiastes.
Another: Every nation hath his teame and his plough to get his living, his bed to take his rest, somefrute of his labour for his frend, his bow & his spear for his enemy, his bow to meet him far off, & his speare to wound him nigh at hand, mourning at burials, mirth at mariages, & religious worship in their Temples. here the generall custome of nations is the whole, which as you see is divided into certaine partes.
The use of this figure.
The use of this forme of speech serveth to minister plenty and varietie of matter, and of many fountaines or figures of eloquution,
there is not one that may be found more frutefull then this, or more plentifull in the multitude of branches.
As there may be a defect in reckoning too few partes, so may
there be an excesse in numbring too many: also a grosse absurditie
is committed when a partition is made by Synonimies, which
3. Synonimies for partes, full wisely.
he did, that divided his Oration into these foure partes: Why? wherefore, for what cause, and to what end, this is called the division, or partition without a difference.