Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, January 18, 2013)
Word of the Day

vilipend

Definition:(verb) Belittle.
Synonyms:deprecate
Usage: In my culture, men commonly vilipend women and treat them as second-class citizens.
Article of the Day

Burial at Sea

Though some religions frown upon burials at sea, the practice has endured for millennia. In many cases, it is done to honor the wishes of the deceased—but not always. Sometimes it is performed out of necessity, as on ships in wartime. In preparation, the body may be sewn into weighted sailcloth or placed in a casket. If it is cremated, the ashes can be scattered or cast in concrete to act as an artificial reef. Per US environmental regulations, how far from land must full-body sea burials be? More...
This Day in History

WWII: First Armed Insurgency in Warsaw Ghetto (1943)

The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising was the Jewish armed resistance that took place in the Warsaw Ghetto of Nazi-occupied Poland during WWII. By July 1942, the Nazis had forced 500,000 Jews into the Warsaw Ghetto. Starvation killed thousands each month and thousands more were transferred to "labor" camps every day. When word reached the ghetto that the destination was actually the gas chambers at Treblinka, the newly formed Jewish insurgency attacked the Nazis. How long did the insurgency last? More...
Today's Birthday

Archibald Alexander Leach, AKA Cary Grant (1904)

Grant performed with an acrobatic comedy troupe in England before he found parts in stage musicals. After he made his film debut in 1932, his debonair charm, good looks, and distinctive voice made him a popular star in sophisticated comedies such as Bringing Up Baby, His Girl Friday, and The Philadelphia Story. He also starred in many Alfred Hitchcock thrillers, including North by Northwest. He received an honorary Academy Award in 1970. What was his last film? More...
Quotation of the Day
My dreams were at once more fantastic and agreeable than my writings.

Mary Shelley (1797-1851)

Idiom of the Day

holy crickets

An exclamation of surprise, shock, or astonishment. More...
Today's Holiday

St. Sebastian's Day Festival (Zinacantán) (2017)

In Zinacantán, Chiapas State, Mexico, there is a celebration for several days in honor of St. Sebastian that marks the transfer of authority from the Big Alcalde (or chief magistrate) to his successor. There is an elaborate ritual during which he hands over an image of San Sebastian and other symbols of his authority. The festival also features a jousting pantomime, dancing to the rhythm of a special drum, two feasts, and a mock healing ceremony. The connection between the Día de San Sebastián festivities and the martyrdom of St. Sebastian, however, remains obscure. More...
In the News

"Spoiler Alert," Here Are This Year's Banished Words

You may only live once, but the powers that be at Michigan's Lake Superior State University say it is time to retire the YOLO hashtag on Twitter, as well as the word "trending." The school's 38th annual List of Words to be Banished from the Queen's English for Misuse, Overuse and General Uselessness also includes phrases like "fiscal cliff," "kick the can down the road," and, spoiler alert, "spoiler alert." Hundreds of words are nominated for the list each year by people from around the globe, but just a select few make the cut. Given the power, what words or phrases would you want to excise from the English language? More...
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