Daily Content Archive

(as of Tuesday, November 6, 2018)
Word of the Day

middling

Definition:(adjective) Lacking exceptional quality or ability.
Synonyms:mediocre, average, fair
Usage: The performance was middling at best, but for some reason the audience still rose to its feet at the end of the show for a standing ovation.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Stative Verbs that Take Gerunds

Stative verbs, also known as verbs of feeling, are very likely to take gerunds as their objects. "Love" is a common stative verb that takes gerunds. What is the gerund in the following sentence? "I love going to the movies." More...
Article of the Day

The White Huns

First mentioned around 125 CE in Chinese writings, the White Huns were an agricultural people of obscure origin with possible Tibetan or Turkish roots. They successfully invaded Persia and India in the 5th century but were driven out in the 6th century. They had little effect in Persia, but in India they influenced society by altering the caste system and disrupting the hierarchy of the ruling families. Were the White Huns related to the Huns who invaded Europe in the fourth and fifth centuries? More...
This Day in History

Voters Reject Proposal to Establish Australia as a Republic (1999)

The British began settling Australia in 1788, and before long, the entire continent was a British dependency. Over the years, Britain's role in Australian government has been progressively restricted, yet Australians remain reluctant to entirely cut ties, as evidenced by the 1999 referendum in which voters rejected a plan to establish Australia as a republic and replace the British monarch as head of state with a president elected by parliament. What other measure did they strike down? More...
Today's Birthday

James Naismith (1861)

While teaching physical education in 1891, Naismith was tasked with creating a safe and inexpensive indoor sport to occupy his students during the Massachusetts winter. His game involved throwing a soccer ball through suspended half-bushel peach baskets, hence the name "basketball"—though "Naismith Ball" was briefly considered before the inventor rejected it. The game took off on campus and quickly spread across the US and around the globe. What other sports invention is credited to Naismith? More...
Quotation of the Day
I am as desirous of being a good neighbor as I am of being a bad subject.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)

Idiom of the Day

(there's) no comparison

This person or thing is clearly and inarguably better than any other. More...
Today's Holiday

Gustavus Adolphus Day (2021)

Gustavus Adolphus (1594-1632) was the king of Sweden who laid the foundations of the modern Swedish state and turned the country into a major European power. He was killed during the Thirty Years' War while leading a cavalry charge at the Battle of Lützen on November 6, 1632. The anniversary of his death is observed throughout Sweden with patriotic demonstrations—particularly in Skansen, Stockholm's outdoor museum. Enormous bonfires are built on Reindeer Mountain and processions of students carry lighted torches through the museum grounds. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: proportion

ad valorem - A type of customs duties, from Latin, meaning "in proportion to the value." More...

analogy - Comes from Greek analogia, "a proportion," such as 2/10 = 10/X, a way of calculating unknown quantities. More...

bonsai - Comes from Japanese words meaning "tray planting" and involves growing and pruning so that all parts of the plant—flowers, leaves, and stems—are in proportion. More...

reason - From Latin ratio, "thinking," and associated with the ideas of right order, proportion, or harmony. More...

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