Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, October 31, 2018)
Word of the Day

dishearten

Definition:(verb) To shake or destroy the courage or resolution of; dispirit.
Synonyms:put off
Usage: These difficult economic conditions dishearten people and undermine their hope.
Article of the Day

Ancient Roman Sanitation

The sophisticated sanitation system in ancient Rome has been the subject of study by historians and archeologists for centuries. Antiquity's largest city, imperial Rome counted well over a million inhabitants at its height. The city was supplied with water—from as far as 57 miles (92 km) away—by its many aqueducts, most of which were underground conduits. Some of the more famous stone arch versions are still standing. Rome also had a complex system of sewers. Where did they empty? More...
This Day in History

Leiden University Library Opens in the Netherlands (1587)

The city of Leiden played a prominent role in the revolt that would create an independent Dutch nation. In 1575—a year after Leiden had survived a siege by the Spanish—Prince William the Silent founded a university in the city. Today, Leiden University is the oldest in the Netherlands. Its library, once housed in a single room, is now home to a monumental collection of books, manuscripts, maps, and letters—some of which are centuries old and very rare. What was the library's first book? More...
Today's Birthday

John Evelyn (1620)

From 1631 until his death in 1706, Evelyn kept a diary that is today an invaluable source of information on 17th-century British social, cultural, and political life. He corresponded frequently with Samuel Pepys, another now-famous diarist of the time. Living as a wealthy country gentleman in Deptford, he wrote about 30 books on various subjects including reforestation, vegetarianism, and numismatics. In 1661, he wrote the Fumifugium, believed to be the first book written on what topic? More...
Quotation of the Day
It has been observed that one's nose is never so happy as when thrust into the affairs of others, from which some physiologists have drawn the inference that the nose is devoid of the sense of smell.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)

Today's Holiday

Thadingyut (2020)

For Buddhists, the period from the full moon day of the 11th lunar month until the full moon day of the 12th lunar month marks the end of Vassa and the beginning of the Kathin, or pilgrimage season. This is a time when Buddhists make pilgrimages to various temples, bringing food and gifts—particularly new robes—to the monks. In Myanmar, Thadingyut is the day on which the Buddha completed his preaching of the Abhidhamma, or "philosophy." In Laos, it is called Boun Ok Vatsa, or the Festival of the Waters, as it is a popular time for pirogue (canoe) races. More...
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