Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, September 16, 2015)
Word of the Day

despondency

Definition:(noun) Depression of spirits from loss of hope, confidence, or courage; dejection.
Synonyms:despondence, disconsolateness
Usage: He slipped through all the grades of despondency until he reached a bottom of absolute gloom.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Phrasal Verbs

Phrasal verbs are verb phrases that have idiomatic meanings—that is, their meaning is not obvious from the individual words that make up the phrase. What parts of speech typically make up a phrasal verb? More...
Article of the Day

Sea Sponges

Sponges are sessile, mostly marine animals from the phylum Porifera. Until the 18th century, scientists classified them as plants because they demonstrated so little movement. More than 4,500 living species, which reproduce through both sexual and asexual means, have been documented. Sponges are colonial in nature, living in groups that may grow to 5 feet (150 cm) in diameter. In common usage, the term "sponge" refers to what part of this aquatic animal? More...
This Day in History

The Grito de Dolores: Battle Cry of Mexican War of Independence (1810)

The revolutionary movements in the US and France did not go unnoticed in Mexico, which had been subjugated by Spain centuries earlier. When Napoleon invaded Spain in 1808, many Mexicans saw an opportunity to claim their own freedom. In 1810, revolutionary priest Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla launched the Mexican War of Independence with his Grito de Dolores—"Cry of Dolores"—a call to freedom that roused the peasants to action and became their battle cry. How is the event commemorated today? More...
Today's Birthday

Louise Arner Boyd (1887)

Boyd was an American explorer of Greenland and the Arctic and the first woman to fly over the North Pole. After the deaths of her parents and brothers, she inherited the family fortune and chartered the ship of famed explorer Roald Amundsen for a trip to the Arctic. She gained notoriety for hunting polar bears and was called "The Girl Who Tamed the Arctic." She later canceled another expedition, stating, "How could I go on a pleasure trip when those 22 lives were at stake?" What had happened? More...
Quotation of the Day
The soul is placed in the body like a rough diamond, and must be polished, or the luster of it will never appear.

Daniel Defoe (1660-1731)

Idiom of the Day

rags-to-riches

adjective (used before a noun) Characterized by a rise from poverty to great or exceptional wealth. More...
Today's Holiday

Clearwater County Fair and Lumberjack Days (2018)

This international lumberjack event attracts loggers from throughout the world to little Orofino, Idaho. Lumbering is a major part of Orofino's economy; Lumberjack Days began in the early 1940s as a local contest and kept growing. The events begin on Thursday, a children's parade is held on Friday, and the lumberjack events come on the weekend. The logging competitions include log birling, ax throwing, chopping, chain-saw events, a speed pole climb, jack-and-jill sawing, and a skidding, or weight-pulling, contest. The cash prizes total more than $30,000 and attendance is about 6,000. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: smoking

stogie, stogy - A stogie (or stogy) is named for the Conestoga wagon—as drivers of the wagons rolled tobacco into thin ropes for smoking on long trips; stogies are now long, thin cigars. More...

cigar - Comes from Spanish cigarro, from the Mayan verb sik'ar, "to smoke" or "smoking." More...

dottle - Any tobacco left in a pipe after smoking. More...

pipe dream - Originated with opium smoking. More...

In the News

Even Children on Tricycles Should Wear Helmets, Researchers Say

For the past decade, we've drilled into children that when they ride a bike, they need to wear a helmet. Now scientists say it may be too late: Tricycle riders should be wearing them, too. Think this is a case of safety overkill? Authors of a new ... More...
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