This is a general term that can refer to any
technique or “trick” used to improve or assist
memory. A simple kind of mnemonic is to encode
to-be-remembered information into a rhyme (“Thirty days hath
September, April, June, and November” or “i before e, except
after c”). Another common kind of mnemonic is the acronym, a
word or sentence formed from the first letter of each word in a
list. Thus, a geography student might remember HOMES as the
names of the Great Lakes (Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie,
Superior), while a music student might memorize the sentence
“Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge” to remember the notes on the
treble clef (E, G, B, D, F).
Very complex mnemonic systems exist that
allow people to remember long lists of random information. One
famous method is the “method of loci” (loci means places). In
this method, a person remembers a list of items by imagining
walking through a familiar place, like her house, and
visualizing herself putting one of the items in each room.
Later, to remember the items, she merely imagines walking back
through the house, recalling what item she “left” in each room.
This method of remembering information dates back at least to
the ancient Greeks, who used it to remember the points they
wanted to make in a speech.
Masters of Memory"
by Catherine E. Myers, Copyright © 2006 Memory Loss and the