What Is Eucharistia?

Eucharistia (also known as Gratiarum actio in Latin, literally “thanksgiving”) is a kind of speech which exclusively consists in giving thanks for the benefits received.

Eucharistia is primarily used in view of appreciating one’s benefactor for the benefit received. It sometimes extends to emphasize the receiver’s unworthiness of such benefit, as when Jacob utters:

  • “I am not worthy of the least of all thy mercies, and all the truth which thou hast showed unto thy servant, for with my staff came I over this Jordan, and now I have two camps.” — (Gen. 32:10).

This trope is also instrumental when the receiver is prompted to confess his/her inability to requite the benefit in same measure, as when David said:

  • “What shall I give unto the Lord for all the benefits towards me? or, for all the benefits which he hath bestowed upon me?” —(Psalm 116:12.)
A Classic Example
  • “But what may I, fair virgin, call your name,
    Whose looks set forth no mortal form to view,
    Nor speech bewrays aught human in thy birth?
    That art a goddess that delud’st our eyes
    And shrouds thy beauty in this borrow’d shape.”

    — (Christopher Marlowe, Dido, Queen of Carthage, 1.1.188)
Further Readings:
Henry Peachum., The Garden of Eloquence | EucharistiaOpens in new window