The Greeks had two types of images; one for memorizing things, arguments, or notions; and one for remembering single words. Each image would be placed at a different locus. As he was reciting his poetry, Simonides would have moved around his mental journey, recalling each image as he went. Lawyers would remind themselves of the details of a case in this way; orators would know their next subject or topic. (Interestingly, the English word 'topic' comes from the Greek topoi, which means place or locus.)

The second type of imagery, for individual words, seems a little extreme. Most Latin sources are in agreement that the idea of referring to a new locus for each word of a speech was preposterous. The author of Ad Herrenium suggests that it was, at best, a good mental exercise.

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