Friday, August 27, 2010

The Friday Figure

This week the Friday Figure comes from Matthew's Sermon on the Mount.

Matthew 6:3 reads:
"But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,"
This verse displays the figure (or rather trope) synechdoche.  The Rhetorica ad Herennium defines synechdoche as the trope in which "the whole is known from the part, or the part from the whole." In the case of Matthew's verse, the person is represented by the right and left hand.  This is an interesting use of the trope because the whole person is denoted by both hands, but separately and unknown to each other. 

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