Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, July 25, 2011)
Word of the Day

effulgent

Definition:(adjective) Shining brilliantly; resplendent.
Synonyms:radiant, refulgent, beamy, beaming
Usage: Hidden nooks and corners, unused to observation, suddenly gleam and blush in effulgent exposure,—like lovers whom the unexpected turning on of a light has revealed kissing in the dark.
Article of the Day

Vending Machines

Today, there are few things that cannot be purchased from vending machines. Most vending machines in the US dispense snacks, beverages, and other inexpensive merchandise, but in the 1950s, some airports featured life insurance policy-dispensing machines. In Japan, where there is approximately one vending machine for every 23 people, you can buy everything from live lobsters to iPods to underwear from machines. Who is believed to have invented the first vending machine and what did it dispense? More...
This Day in History

Bob Dylan Plugs In (1965)

At the 1965 Newport Folk Festival, erstwhile acoustic folk musician Bob Dylan performed with an electric guitar for the first time, marking a major shift in his career. The move did not go over well. Expecting an acoustic set like his two previous ones at Newport, the audience was caught off guard by Dylan's apparent betrayal of the folk genre, and some fans booed him loudly. His first appearance at the festival, in 1963, constituted his premiere national performance. Who invited him to play? More...
Today's Birthday

Thomas Eakins (1844)

Perhaps the greatest American artist of the 19th century, Eakins lived, worked, and taught in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, for most of his life. There, he painted The Gross Clinic in 1875. Depicting a surgical operation, it was initially criticized for being too realistic, but it is now seen as his masterpiece. Eakins was an influential art teacher, but his decision to use nude models of both sexes in mixed-gender classes caused an uproar. What incident led to his resignation in 1886? More...
Quotation of the Day
A God that can be understood is no God. Who can explain the Infinite in words?

W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965)

Idiom of the Day

a juggling act

A difficult and/or precarious situation in which several things are being attempted or must be maintained at the same time. More...
Today's Holiday

Grotto Day (2017)

In England during the late 18th and early 19th centuries, oysters were not considered the rare delicacy they are today, and the large number of oysters eaten at that time meant there were lots of shells around. On St. James's Day, which was observed on August 5 before the Gregorian, or New Style, Calendar came into use and on July 25 thereafter, children used the shells to construct small decorative grottoes. Sometimes the children begged for pennies as a reward for their efforts. Most of this grotto-building took place in London, and the custom continued up to the 1950s. More...
In the News

More Men Developing Eating Disorders

British National Health Service data show a 66 percent increase in hospital admissions for men with eating disorders over the past decade. The figures challenge the commonly held belief that eating disorders only affect women. It is estimated that up to 20 percent of Britain's more than one million eating disorder sufferers are male. Unfortunately, many men are still reluctant to seek treatment, and this, coupled with the fact that doctors often do not recognize the signs of eating disorders in men, means that many go untreated. More...
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