Re: Substance and Form

Robin Faichney (
Tue, 2 Jun 1998 22:02:03 +0100

Date: Tue, 2 Jun 1998 22:02:03 +0100
From: Robin Faichney <>
Subject: Re: Substance and Form
In-Reply-To: <>

In message <>, Michael Best
<> writes
>Hi Aaron,
>Thanks for your email. And I'm sorry that the one time I appear on your
>listserve it is by accident!
>Honestly, I am not sure if Campbell used only the adjective and
>adverbial versions "mnemonic" and "mnemonically". But since English has
>those rules of transformation that is all fair.

OED, 2nd edition:
[begin quote]
mnemon (_______). Psychol.
[f. Gr. ______ memory + -on1.]
A unit of memory (see quots. 1965, 1966).
The coiner of the term appears to be Cherkin (quot. 1966), whose
forthcoming paper is mentioned by Young in 1965. Cherkin's paper was
communicated to the editor of the Proceedings on 19 November 1965.
1965 New Scientist 23 Dec. 861 In the author's [sc. J. Z. Young's] view,
memory is localized in small combinations of brain cells, which he calls
1966 A. Cherkin in Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. LV. 88 The proposed unit is
defined as the minimum physical change in the nervous system that
encodes one memory._ The name proposed for the unit is the _mnemon'
(mneme = memory; -on = suffix denoting a fundamental particle).
1971 J. Z. Young Introd. Study Man xix. 252 The time to begin
accumulating such units of memory (mnemons) would be as soon as they are

mnemonic (_________), a. and n.
[ad. Gr. ___________, f. _______________ mindful, f. _____________ to
remember. Cf. F. mnmonique, Sp. mnemnico, Pg., It. mnemonico, G.
A. adj.
1. Intended to aid the memory; pertaining to mnemonics.
1753 Chambers Cycl. Supp., Mnemonic Tables, among the artifices to
assist the memory, this is one of great use.
1866 Felton Anc. & Mod. Gr. I. i. iii. 40 Many of the North American
tribes had invented_a set of mnemonic signs, by which the words of
popular songs, once learned, could be recalled to the memory.
1870 Jevons Elem. Logic xvi. 141 In the next lesson certain ancient
mnemonic lines will be furnished...

mne_monically adv., in a mnemonical manner.
1867 Q. Rev. Oct. 427 Each one of these mysterious letters was taken,
mnemonically, as the initial of some technical word that indicated one
of these four methods.
1887 J. Gillow Bibl. Dict. Eng. Cath. III. 310 Hill, William,
[end quote]

Robin Faichney

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