Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, September 18, 2017)
Word of the Day

politic

Definition:(adjective) Smoothly agreeable and courteous with a degree of sophistication.
Synonyms:bland, smooth, suave
Usage: He was too politic to quarrel with so important a personage.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Dummy Pronouns

Dummy pronouns are words that function grammatically as pronouns, but which do not have antecedents like normal pronouns do. This means that, unlike normal pronouns, dummy pronouns do not replace a noun, phrase, or clause. What do they refer to in a sentence? More...
Article of the Day

Radiolarians

Radiolarians are a highly diverse group of marine protozoa widely recognized for their intricately ornate mineral skeletons. Part of the plankton community, radiolarians have a fossil record that extends back to the early Paleozoic era. Because they have undergone continuous evolutionary change, they are often used to analyze the layers of the marine sedimentary record. What German biologist produced exquisite drawings of radiolarians that helped to popularize them among Victorian microscopists? More...
This Day in History

The Fashoda Incident (1898)

Toward the end of the 19th century, France and Britain were brought to the brink of war by territorial disputes in Africa. Tensions came to a head at a strategically located fort at Fashoda, Sudan, occupied by the French mere months before a British force arrived with its own designs on the area. A standoff ensued, but the French, fearing an outbreak of hostilities, eventually withdrew. The diplomatic solution to this political crisis is widely seen as a precursor to what Anglo-French agreement? More...
Today's Birthday

Jean Bernard Léon Foucault (1819)

Foucault, a French physicist, invented the Foucault pendulum and used it to provide experimental proof that the Earth rotates on its axis. He improved astronomical instruments, especially the telescope, and with Armand Fizeau took the first clear photograph of the Sun. Foucault is also known for determining the speed of light with extreme accuracy and showing that light travels slower in water than in air. He had originally studied medicine but abandoned it for physics due to a fear of what? More...
Quotation of the Day
The air of ideas is the only air worth breathing.

Edith Wharton (1862-1937)

Idiom of the Day

a man/woman on a mission

A person who is fiercely determined to do or get what he or she wants. More...
Today's Holiday

Fiestas Patrias (2021)

Fiestas Patrias is the great national two-day holiday in Chile celebrating Independence Day, September 18, and Army Day, September 19. In the days preceding the holiday, fondas (fairs) pop up throughout Chile, and it is a popular time for Chilean rodeos. Huasos (cowboys) compete against one another by attempting to pin a calf against the wall of the medialuna, or arena, with their horse, and are awarded points based on which part of the horse is touching the calf. Because September marks the beginning of spring in Chile, Fiestas Patrias is also a popular occasion for kite flying. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: vow

drawing the nail - Means absolving oneself of a vow. More...

vum - To swear or vow. More...

votal - Means "associated with or having the nature of a vow." More...

vote - From Latin votum, "vow, wish," which was its original meaning in English. The word had a number of meanings—now obsolete—before it took on the sense (in the 15th century) of "a formal expression of one's opinion or approval or disapproval of a matter, especially a candidate, motion, or proposal." More...

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