Daily Content Archive

(as of Sunday, May 21, 2017)
Word of the Day

craven

Definition:(adjective) Characterized by abject fear; cowardly.
Synonyms:recreant
Usage: The cowardly shopkeeper angered the revolutionaries with his craven proposal to raise the white flag and surrender.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Modal Auxiliary Verbs - Could

The modal verb "could" is most often used as a past-tense version of "can," indicating what someone or something was able to do in the past. "Could" can be used in what types of conditional sentences? More...
Article of the Day

Rube Goldberg Machines

A Rube Goldberg machine is an exceedingly complex apparatus that performs a very simple task in an incredibly indirect and convoluted way. Named for cartoonist Rube Goldberg, who was known for illustrating such contraptions, the machines are now the subject several competitions in which teams are judged on their machine's ability to complete a certain task using as many steps as possible. What is an example of a simple task performed by one of Goldberg's illustrated mechanisms? More...
This Day in History

World's Tallest Roller Coaster Opens in New Jersey (2005)

Reaching a height of 456 feet (139 m) and with a top speed of 128 mph (206 km/h), the Kingda Ka roller coaster at Six Flags Great Adventure theme park in Jackson, New Jersey, became the tallest and the fastest roller coaster in the world when it opened in 2005. It took both titles from Cedar Point park's Top Thrill Dragster, which was designed by the same company and is nearly identical. Kingda Ka lost its title as the world's fastest roller coaster in 2010 to what attraction? More...
Today's Birthday

Henri Rousseau (1844)

Rousseau was an entirely self-taught French painter. He held a minor post as a tax collector in Paris for more than 20 years before retiring to paint at the age of 49. His work remained consistently naive and imaginative and was often ridiculed. It was only after his death that Rousseau gained recognition as an artistic genius. Though he never left France or saw a jungle, he is best known for his paintings of lush, tropical scenes and wild animals. What was his inspiration for the exotic scenes? More...
Quotation of the Day
To kill an error is as good a service as, and sometimes even better than, the establishing of a new truth or fact.

Charles Darwin (1809-1882)

Idiom of the Day

good for nothing

Entirely without value; of no use whatsoever. (Hyphenated if used as a modifier before a noun.) More...
Today's Holiday

Ascension Day (Portugal) (2020)

Also known as Quinta Feira da Espiga, or Ear of Wheat Thursday, Ascension Day in Portugal is associated with wishes for peace and prosperity. Traditionally, in rural communities, people gather olive branches, wheat sheaves, poppies, and daisies and fashion them into bouquets. The olive and wheat are symbolic of an abundant harvest, the poppy represents tranquility, and the daisy stands for money. Many Portuguese preserve a sprig of wheat in their homes as a symbol of prosperity. Another custom is to cull healing plants and herbs to be used later in homemade medicines. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: tortoise

shellpad - Another name for a tortoise. More...

testudinate - Means "slow-moving; like a turtle," from Latin testudo, "tortoise," and also describes something curved or vaulted like a turtle shell. More...

Galapagos Islands - Named for the massive tortoises living there, from Old Spanish galapago, "tortoise." More...

turtle, tortoise, terrapin - Turtle is applied to those living in water and tortoise to those that live on land, while terrapins live in fresh water; turtle and tortoise may come from the Latin root tort, with reference to the animals' twisted feet. More...

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