Daily Archives: September 9, 2007


Anamnesis (an’-am-nee’-sis): Calling to memory past matters. More specifically, citing a past author [apparently] from memory.  Anamnesis helps to establish ethos [credibility], since it conveys the idea that the speaker is knowledgeable of the received wisdom from the past.

It was John Adams who said “Facts are stubborn things.” Following in Adams’s footsteps, but swerving a little off course as he did from time to time, Ronald Reagan once said, “Facts are stupid things.” At least they both agreed that facts are things–whether they’re stubborn or stupid, or neither, or both, there’s no doubt that the facts of the matter must be taken into account, no matter how much one would wish they did not exist.

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu). Gorgias has inserted the bracketed words [apparently] and [credibility].

Quotation from “The Quotations Page” (quotationspage.com)