Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, August 19, 2016)
Word of the Day

credenza

Definition:(noun) A buffet, sideboard, or bookcase, especially one without legs.
Synonyms:credence
Usage: There was no room on the dining table, so they placed the desserts on the nearby credenza and encouraged their guests to help themselves to cake.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Comma Splices

A comma splice occurs when we join two independent clauses with a comma. Why can't we use a comma in this situation? More...
Article of the Day

Czech Dream

As their final film-school project, two Czech students, Vít Klusák and Filip Remunda, perpetrated a massive hoax—and filmed it. Called Czech Dream, the 2004 documentary follows the pair as they convince a public relations agency to create an advertising campaign—complete with billboards, TV commercials, and a jingle—for the launch of a fake department store. It worked; 3,000 shoppers showed up to an empty field for the grand opening of the “store.” How did the customers react to the ruse? More...
This Day in History

American Outlaw John Wesley Hardin Shot Dead (1895)

Hardin was an American desperado who claimed to have killed 42 men, one of them allegedly for snoring. He became a gambler and a gunman very early in life, but his friends and gunfighting skills helped him evade the authorities until 1877, when he was sentenced to 25 years for killing a sheriff. He studied law in prison and was released after serving 16 years. Pardoned in 1894, he passed the bar exam and began to practice law, but a local constable shot him to death a year later for what reason? More...
Today's Birthday

Madame du Barry (1743)

Madame du Barry was the mistress of Louis XV. She was first the mistress of Jean du Barry, who introduced her into Parisian high society. Admired for her beauty, she joined Louis XV's court in 1769 after a nominal marriage to Jean's brother, a nobleman, qualified her to be Louis's official royal mistress. Though she exercised little political influence, her unpopularity contributed to the decline of the prestige of the crown in the early 1770s. What happened to her during the French Revolution? More...
Quotation of the Day
A most paradoxical mixture of sound and silence pervades the shady parts of the wood. The noise from the insects is so loud...; yet within the recesses of the forest a universal silence appears to reign.

Charles Darwin (1809-1882)

Idiom of the Day

an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth

Compensation or retribution that is (or should be) of an equal amount or degree to the injury or offense that was originally dealt. The saying comes from various passages in the Old Testament, including in Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy. More...
Today's Holiday

Aviation Day (2019)

National Aviation Day honors the birthday of the American inventor and early manufacturer of airplanes, Orville Wright (1871-1948), as well as the progress that has been made in manned flight since the Wright Brothers made their historic 120-foot flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, in 1903. Parachute jumping, glider demonstrations, films, airplane rides, and displays of new and antique aircraft are popular events on this day, and open house celebrations are often held at local airports. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: torture

ordeal - From Old English ordel, "judgment," figuratively, an experience testing endurance, patience, courage, etc.—also a test of guilt or innocence that was one of severe pain or torture. More...

torment - Comes from a Latin word, tormentum, for an instrument of torture. More...

tortuous, torturous - Tortuous is "winding, crooked, full of twists and turns," and torturous, based on "torture," is "painful, characterized by suffering." More...

travel - From Latin trepaliare, "torture," it evolved into "journey" from the allusion to the inevitable trouble of medieval travel. More...

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