A volume purporting to examine forgetting in early modern culture may elicit accusations of methodological irresponsibility: of indulging in a poststructural paradox whose actual scholarly value deteriorates rapidly once the initial shine of astonishment has worn off. Even if contemporary relations between history and memory have vacillated between alliance and antagonism, “[m]emory,” as Jacques Le Goff claims, “is the raw material of history” and “seeks to save the past in order to serve the present and future” (Le Goff 1992: xi, 99). How, then, can one recover forgetting from the past, when common sense dictates that the forgotten is by its very nature irrecoverable? If it were recoverable, it would be a remembrance. Augustine agonized over this conundrum in his Confessions, realizing that forgetting is at once the “absence of memory” and – inexplicably and incomprehensibly – something to be remembered. His metaphysical bewilderment would, however, vanish if he did not assume forgetting to be a privation and memory to be an allencompassing field – as he says, “a vast, immeasurable sanctuary” (Augustine 1982: 222, 216). There is much more to forgetting and conversely much less to memory than meets the eye.