This study combines formal analysis of Shakespeare’s texts with an investigation of early modern English culture in order to explore the social energy circulating between. There are two points underlying the argument of the whole thesis. Firstly, whereas the brain-centred understanding of memory was predominant in early modern England as in other European countries, there was also a heart-centred tradition. Although the brain and reason still occupied pivotal positions in early modern England, the heart and emotion were given substantial attention by Shakespeare among others. Secondly, this thesis argues that there are two categories of memory, namely, locative memory and fluid memory, and Shakespeare was influenced by both. It also contends that the eradication and displacement of memory provoked anxiety about memory, just as the displacement and annihilation of corpses, mainly caused by plagues and the Reformation as well as other factors, lead to heightened anxiety about death in early modern English culture.