chapter  5
44 Pages

Mnemonics and Emblems

Everyone knows how important memory was and still is.1 Many have read about the so-called arts of memory, but few of us have read any of the Classical, medieval, or Renaissance texts that in their dierent ways actually seek to explain these arts. Can these articial arts of memory be made in some way responsible for emblems? Put dierently, do emblems embody perhaps something of these arts of memory? Can the arts of memory be usefully invoked to explain the success and value of emblems? Mnemonic as an adjective may be dened as anything intended to aid memory. As a noun mnemonics is the science or art of improving memory, a system devised for training memory, that is, articial memory. ere is, then, perhaps a useful dierence to be made between the adjective and the noun.