Definition of engram in English:



  • A hypothetical permanent change in the brain accounting for the existence of memory; a memory trace.

    • ‘The engram is the neural network representing fragments of past experiences which have been encoded.’
    • ‘She shouldn't be thinking about him anyway, she should be flushing him out of her memory engrams.’
    • ‘We'd wiped the memory engrams clean, or so we'd hoped.’
    • ‘The solution is auditing, to discover and to clear these traumatic engrams, hidden in the subconscience.’
    • ‘The memory trace, or engram, ‘feels’ like it is stored permanently in the brain and it will never be forgotten.’
    • ‘Auditing, the theory goes, enables members to confront and overcome engrams.’
    • ‘The presence of these engrams impedes personal development and happiness in one's later life, and so they need to be expunged, or ‘cleared,’ in order to achieve mental and emotional well-being.’


Early 20th century: coined in German from Greek en- ‘within’ + gramma ‘letter of the alphabet’.