1. a small section ...1838 rare
2. a small, insignificant religious body; a little or petty sect ...1851 rare
from Latin type *sectiuncula, a diminutive of sectiōn-em
FIRST DOCUMENTED USE
1838 - see EXAMPLE below
"...I think you will not find the manuscript very difficult to make out, though it is strangely cut in pieces and patched. I have divided it all through into sectiuncules, occupying generally from half a page to a whole one..."
From: Memoirs of James Robert Hope-Scott of Abbotsford: With Selections From His Correspondence
- Robert Ornsby, 1884
Taken from correspondence by W. E. Gladstone, Esq., M.P. to J. R. Hope, Esq.
House of Commons: July 18, 1838