Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, December 16, 2016)
Word of the Day

sophistry

Definition:(noun) A plausible but misleading or fallacious argument.
Synonyms:sophism, sophistication
Usage: Though they had all been taken in by the argument, they later claimed to have secretly known that it was pure sophistry.
Daily Grammar Lesson

[sic]

When a quotation contains a mistake, such as a spelling mistake or grammatical error, but we wish to preserve the quotation exactly as it was written, we can mark it with the word "sic" (Latin for "thus" or "so") in brackets to let the reader know that the error was not our own. When should this generally be used? More...
Article of the Day

Jerusalem Syndrome

Manifesting in Jews and Christians alike, Jerusalem syndrome is a psychological phenomenon in which individuals experience religiously themed delusions while visiting Jerusalem. Seen as early as the Middle Ages, it is often marked by a desire to tour the city alone, an obsession with being clean, and the need to don a white gown. It sometimes culminates in the public delivery of a sermon. For what occasion in recent history did authorities fear a major spike in cases of Jerusalem syndrome? More...
This Day in History

The Great White Fleet Begins Its Circumnavigation of the Globe (1907)

Just seven years before the start of World War I, a fleet of 16 American battleships took part in a 14-month, round-the-world voyage ordered by US President Theodore Roosevelt as a peaceful display of American naval power. Later known as the "Great White Fleet," the ships were painted white except for the gilded scrollwork on their bows. In ports around the world, thousands of people turned out to see the ships when they arrived. Why did several of the ships make an unscheduled stop in Italy? More...
Today's Birthday

Jane Austen (1775)

Austen was a prominent English novelist whose writing is noted for its wit, realism, shrewd sympathy, and brilliant prose style. Though she received little public recognition in her own lifetime—her books were published anonymously—she is now regarded as one of the great masters of the English novel. Several of her works, including Pride and Prejudice, have been adapted for film. Before her death, Austen suffered from a protracted, unexplained illness. What might have caused it? More...
Quotation of the Day
How gladly would I meet
Mortality my sentence, and be earth
Insensible! how glad would lay me down
As in my mother's lap!

John Milton (1608-1674)

Idiom of the Day

ink-slinger

slang A writer, especially one who produces a large amount of low-quality material for a living. More...
Today's Holiday

Day of Reconciliation (2020)

The South African legal holiday known as the Day of Reconciliation was established on December 16, 1838, in commemoration of the victory of the Voortrekkers over Dingane and the Zulus. The original name for this holiday was Dingaan's Day, then it was called Day of the Vow during apartheid. After South Africa renounced apartheid and held its first democratic election in 1994, the day remained a legal holiday but acquired a new name to reflect its new focus: promoting national unity and healing. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: rooms

pied-a-terre - A small town house or rooms used for short residences (1829), from French "foot on the ground." More...

party wall - A wall common to two adjoining buildings or rooms. More...

lobby - One of its early meanings was "monastic cloister," from Latin lobia, "covered way," before it came to mean the passage or waiting area between rooms in a building. More...

enfilade - A suite of rooms with doorways in line with each other—or a vista between rows of trees. More...

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