Daily Content Archive

(as of Tuesday, February 17, 2015)
Word of the Day

ascetic

Definition:(noun) A person who renounces material comforts and leads a life of austere self-discipline, especially as an act of religious devotion.
Synonyms:abstainer
Usage: His rough clothes and starved frame gave him the look of an ascetic, and he refused the food they tried to give him.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Participles

Participles are words formed from verbs that can function as adjectives or gerunds or can be used to form the continuous tenses and the perfect tenses of verbs. There are two participle forms—what are they? More...
Article of the Day

The San

The San are an indigenous people of Africa, mainly found in Botswana, Namibia, Angola, and South Africa. Once nomadic hunters and gatherers of wild food in desolate areas like the Kalahari Desert of southwest Africa, most of the San now live in settlements and work on cattle ranches or farms. The San have a rich folklore, are skilled in drawing, and have a remarkably complex language characterized by the use of clicks. What plant used by the San has been patented, and why? More...
This Day in History

H. L. Hunley Becomes First Submarine to Sink an Enemy Warship (1864)

The US Civil War-era submarine Hunley required an eight-man crew—seven to power the propeller with a hand-crank and one to steer. Within months of its launch, the Confederate sub had sunk and been salvaged twice, taking the lives of five crewmen the first time and the entire crew the second. Manned with a new crew, Hunley became the first submarine to sink a ship in battle, yet the achievement was marred when the sub itself sank, killing all aboard yet again. When was it recovered? More...
Today's Birthday

Isabelle Eberhardt (1877)

As a Swiss explorer traveling in North Africa, Eberhardt often dressed as a man to move more freely through Arab society. Intensely independent, she took the side of Algerians fighting against colonial French rule. She converted to Islam, was initiated into a Sufi brotherhood, and married an Algerian soldier. She wrote about her travels in books and newspapers. She survived a murder attempt—in which her arm was badly injured by a saber—only to die at the age of 27 in what unlikely fashion? More...
Quotation of the Day
Fate alone saw the meaning of the web it wove, the might of it, and its place in the making of a world's history.

Frances Hodgson Burnett (1849-1924)

Idiom of the Day

last chance (for/at/to do something)

The last or final opportunity to get, have, do, or achieve something. More...
Today's Holiday

Quirinalia (2021)

Quirinus was an ancient Roman deity who closely resembled Mars, the god of war. His name is associated with that of the Quirinal, one of the seven hills on which Rome was built. Eventually, Quirinus was identified with Romulus, one of the legendary founders of Rome, and his festival on February 17 coincided with the date on which Romulus was believed to have been deified. This festival was also associated with the advent of spring warfare, when the shields and weapons of the army, which had been purified and retired for the winter, were brought out. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: sending

granulated sugar - So called because the last step in processing white table sugar is sending it through a granulator, where it is dried and formed into tiny grains. More...

mission - First denoted sending the Holy Spirit into the world, from Latin mittere, "send." More...

perennial - First meant "remaining leafy throughout the year"; plants living three or more years—dying aboveground and sending up fresh growth every year—are perennials. More...

radio - An abbreviation of radiotelegraphy, the sending of messages by electromagnetic rays. More...

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