memory

noun
mem·​o·​ry | \ ˈmem-rē How to pronounce memory (audio) , ˈme-mə-\
plural memories

Definition of memory

1a : the power or process of reproducing or recalling what has been learned and retained especially through associative mechanisms began to lose his memory as he grew older
b : the store of things learned and retained from an organism's activity or experience as evidenced by modification of structure or behavior or by recall and recognition has a good memory for faces
2a : commemorative remembrance erected a statue in memory of the hero
b : the fact or condition of being remembered days of recent memory
3a : a particular act of recall or recollection has no memory of the event
b : an image or impression of one that is remembered fond memories of her youth
c : the time within which past events can be or are remembered within the memory of living men
4a : a device (such as a chip) or a component of an electronic device (such as a computer or smartphone) in which information can be inserted and stored and from which it may be extracted when wanted especially : ram
b : capacity for storing information 512 megabytes of memory
5 : a capacity for showing effects as the result of past treatment or for returning to a former condition used especially of a material (such as metal or plastic)

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Choose the Right Synonym for memory

memory, remembrance, recollection, reminiscence mean the capacity for or the act of remembering, or the thing remembered. memory applies both to the power of remembering and to what is remembered. gifted with a remarkable memory that incident was now just a distant memory remembrance applies to the act of remembering or the fact of being remembered. any remembrance of his deceased wife was painful recollection adds an implication of consciously bringing back to mind often with some effort. after a moment's recollection he produced the name reminiscence suggests the recalling of usually pleasant incidents, experiences, or feelings from a remote past. my grandmother's reminiscences of her Iowa girlhood

Examples of memory in a Sentence

He began to lose his memory as he grew older. Dad has a selective memory: he remembers the times he was right and forgets the times he was wrong. We have pleasant memories of the trip. trying to repress bitter memories His name evokes memories of a happier time. That time is just a dim memory to me now. The happiness of those times is still vivid in my memory. Her name has faded from memory. I seem to have very little memory of that time in my life. The sudden shock jogged his memory and everything came flooding back into his mind.
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Recent Examples on the Web

One of the most disturbing and morbidly fascinating true crime stories in recent memory is the murder of Dee Dee Blanchard by her teenage daughter Gypsy. Emma Dibdin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Prepare for your next true crime obsession.," 8 Mar. 2019 The most troubling, unshakeable memory was a condition Cunningham had stipulated when offering Tann the Boba Fett prototype. Alexander Huls, Popular Mechanics, "The Great Star Wars Heist," 7 Mar. 2019 One childhood memory Meghan clearly recalls is obsessing over a set of Barbie dolls called the Heart Family. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "Meghan Markle and Her Dad: A Timeline of Their Rocky Relationship," 6 Mar. 2019 Campus Quilt is dedicated to turning your old clothes into lasting memories in the form of fun and functional t-shirt quilts. Country Living, "TURN YOUR OLD CLOTHES INTO A T-SHIRT QUILT!," 5 Mar. 2019 Our second lunch, at Neiman Marcus NorthPark, beckons, and that’s where my sense memory kicks in: the kaleidoscope of seemingly endless possibilities, that hallmark of feeling young. Alex Witchel, Town & Country, "The Best Department Stores Are All Opening Restaurants," 25 Feb. 2019 The imaging scan showed that her hippocampus, the brain region that regulates memory, had severely atrophied and was in the 14th percentile for her age — 86 percent of peers were better off. Linda Marsa, Discover Magazine, "A New Treatment for Alzheimer's? It Starts With Lifestyle," 16 Nov. 2018 Image Novotna’s legacy at Wimbledon lives on not only in memories, but in a player currently ranked 200th in singles. Ben Rothenberg, New York Times, "The Wisdom of Jana Novotna Lives On in a Young Czech Player," 10 July 2018 In the four days that Karolina was alive, Brandy and her family made dozens of memories. Kate Bennis, Good Housekeeping, "These Angel Gowns Bring Comfort to Grieving Families," 26 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'memory.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of memory

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for memory

Middle English memorie, from Anglo-French memoire, memorie, from Latin memoria, from memor mindful; akin to Old English gemimor well-known, Greek mermēra care, Sanskrit smarati he remembers

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Learn More about memory

Statistics for memory

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for memory

The first known use of memory was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for memory

memory

noun

English Language Learners Definition of memory

: the power or process of remembering what has been learned
: something that is remembered
: the things learned and kept in the mind

memory

noun
mem·​o·​ry | \ ˈme-mə-rē How to pronounce memory (audio) , ˈmem-rē\
plural memories

Kids Definition of memory

1 : the power or process of remembering She has a bad memory for names.
2 : the store of things learned and kept in the mind … Botticelli … recited from memory all the confessions he had heard from prisoners.— Kate DiCamillo, The Tale of Despereaux
3 : the act of remembering and honoring The statue is in memory of a great soldier.
4 : something remembered a pleasant memory
5 : the time within which past events are remembered What happened is not within the memory of any living person.
6 : a device or part in a computer which can receive and store information for use when wanted random access memory
7 : capacity for storing information The computer has 512 megabytes of memory.

memory

noun
mem·​o·​ry | \ ˈmem-(ə-)rē How to pronounce memory (audio) \
plural memories

Medical Definition of memory

1a : the power or process of reproducing or recalling what has been learned and retained especially through associative mechanisms
b : the store of things learned and retained from an organism's activity or experience as indicated by modification of structure or behavior or by recall and recognition
2 : a capacity for showing effects as the result of past treatment or for returning to a former condition used especially of a material (as metal or plastic)

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More from Merriam-Webster on memory

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with memory

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for memory

Spanish Central: Translation of memory

Nglish: Translation of memory for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of memory for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about memory

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