There is a literary genre that more than any other reflects the progress of Enlightenment epistemology: the genre of the "Grundriss", a sort of compendium that in the late eighteenth century took on an evocative and ambitious dimension. The term "Grundriss" has various meanings which, however, from a certain period in the eighteenth century converge towards the concept of tabular form, as a description of a new type of compendium mainly intended for academic lectures. But this primary function should not mislead us. The semantic transformation was complex, involving themes from the old concept of "ars memoriae" to the crucial theme of architectonics. Thus the Grundriss genre may be able to give rise to a new (and possibly privileged) attitude to the knowledge reforms brought about in the Enlightenment.