- an example or model.
- an anecdote that illustrates or supports a moral point, as in a medieval sermon.
Origin of exemplum
1885–90; < Late Latin, Latin: literally, a pattern, model, copy
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for exemplum
Transeat in exemplum—Let it stand as a precedent, or an example.
This story is a sort of exemplum of the sin of pride and avarice.Filipino Popular Tales
Dean S. Fansler
Certainly the convent never went to sleep in a sermon which had the tale of Chauntecleer and Pertelote for its exemplum.Medieval English Nunneries c. 1275 to 1535
Eileen Edna Power
Exemplum: As David of Trebizond has told me, when they wipe out the population of a city, they know there will be a few survivors.The Saracen: Land of the Infidel
Mr. De Morgan says "Plato," but to prevent confusion I have kept to my own exemplum.A System of Logic: Ratiocinative and Inductive
John Stuart Mill
- an anecdote that supports a moral point or sustains an argument, used esp in medieval sermons
- an example or illustration
from Latin: example