It takes time and effort to create a good mnemonic. There is usage involved with respect to vocabulary and sentence formation where one needs to keep the words other than the necessary ones at a minimum.

To remember the names of the planets:

  • From Wikipedia: "Men Very Easily Make Jugs Serve Useful Needs, Perhaps"
  • How I learnt: "My Very Elegant Mother Just Served Us Nine Peanuts"

Here, one may argue that they are opinion based, but that's how mnemonics are. Focusing solely on "opinion" aspect, in my view will deal great unjust to this community and especially to the mnemonics tag. Frankly, I love mnemonics and for just about anything I create them and joined this community primarily to get help on the same.

Do you think that at least for mnemonics the focus should be shifted from opinion to usage?

If not, is there some Stack Exchange site where I can ask such questions, or should I ask it somewhere else altogether?

  • 1
    Questions about mnemonics in a particular language -might- be suitable for ELU or an SE site, but that question does not. You're asking for writing advice? Or figuring out what a good mnemonic should be? I don't know, but maybe you should try Reddit or Quora?
    – Mitch
    Jun 1, 2022 at 14:52
  • 1
    "Parallel", "onomatopoeia" are words notorious for their spelling difficulties. There are a host of other words users also find challenging: e.g unnecessary and guarantee Yet these last three questions were all closed for being primarily opinion based despite being common words. Why would anyone want to know the "answer" to your question? Who would it be useful to?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jun 3, 2022 at 13:09
  • 2
    I’m voting to close this question because the user should first familiarise themself with the site and its culture before complaining about one question of theirs being closed.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jun 3, 2022 at 13:12
  • 1
    I have great difficulty remembering mnemonics. I can remember the MVEMJSUNP one by recalling the names of the planets, noting which letters they begin with, and then with luck I'll remember "Men very easily, um ..." and no, it's gone. Jun 9, 2022 at 20:25
  • @PrimeMover you're not making a point, I think. If mnemonics aren't helpful to you then you shouldn't say that anyone can do without them thus. Myself included and many find mnemonics very helpful. That's true for most people and thus mnemonics even exist. Jun 9, 2022 at 20:32
  • @InanimateBeing Well okay, but dunno why ... job done Jun 9, 2022 at 20:40
  • @InanimateBeing For other people they may work, but I have memories of losing ground at school because I could never remember the stupid mnemonics when I could rattle off the info without them. Fun and all that it is to make them up, they are usually so contrived as to be more difficult to remember than the source material. Jun 9, 2022 at 20:43
  • Wow! @PrimeMover then you should consider yourself blessed as I generally have to keep on devising these mnemonics to learn one thing or the other. That's also one of the primary reasons I joined this community for as I sometimes lack the vocab or the sentence formation skill for doing so. Jun 9, 2022 at 20:45
  • 1
    I noticed you bumped this question to get more traffic, which is a very reasonable thing to do. But the current vote of -7 (-8 and +1) is both rare and strongly negative, which means I think you can understand that people on ELU meta reliably disagree with your view on mnemonics. That is, you asked a question and it's pretty settled negatively that your question on the particular mnemonic you made up is very much off-topic. Some other mnemonics that are generally accepted might be on-topic, but judging one that you made up is very much likely to be off-topic.
    – Mitch
    Aug 1, 2022 at 20:20

1 Answer 1


The site is English Language and Usage.

Language is about the language itself: etymologies, synonyms, what particular objects are called and similar stuff.

Usage is how English is used: grammar, punctuation, word order etc.

Mnemonics don't fit either class.

However, where a particular mnemonic might be useful to others, then even off-topic questions can be accommodated. Examples might include how to remember the order of the planets, colours of the rainbow, possibly presidents of America or monarchs of England. Unfortunately we no longer have a "too localised" close reason, but I would have put your esoteric month-order in that category.

Note that the actual close reason was not "opinion-based", although a couple of people did choose that. Others wrote in their own reasons, "This seems to be more of a puzzle than an English language matter"; "I'm voting to close this question because it’s not about the English language"; "Not suitable for this site."

  • "Puzzle" is a very broad term and just about any mnemonic can be seen a puzzle too. Though, in my case it may seem more like one due to the "rules" that I have mentioned as pointed by many. I have removed those "rules" now so people can give it a good try. If this is a good enough reason, can you help lift the ban or do you think it may get lifted? Jun 1, 2022 at 14:30
  • 6
    No. Puzzles which do not rely on the vagaries of English are off-topic, and your series is still so esoteric as to be useful only to you. It's still "too localised".
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Jun 1, 2022 at 14:40
  • 4
    I can't, I'm afraid. I still think the series is too esoteric. Others may disagree, of course: three reopen votes will reopen the question, and your question here and subsequent edit may convince them.
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Jun 1, 2022 at 18:03

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