Daily Content Archive

(as of Saturday, March 25, 2017)
Word of the Day

foundling

Definition:(noun) A deserted or abandoned child of unknown parentage.
Synonyms:abandoned infant
Usage: No one knew why an envelope containing images of a mountainous landscape had been tucked in the folds of the foundling's blanket.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Distributive Determiners

Distributive determiners, also known as "distributive adjectives," are used to refer to individual members within a group or within a pair. The distributive determiners are "each," "every," "either," and "neither." What are they are used to modify? More...
Article of the Day

Ambergris

Found floating in warm seas or washed up on the shore, ambergris is a solid, waxy substance formed in the intestines of sperm whales. Possessing a sweet, earthy odor, it has been used throughout history as a food flavoring and a material for jewelry, though its primary commercial use has been as a fixative in perfumes. However, because ambergris is quite rare and expensive, many of today's perfumes use synthetic replacements. What function does ambergris serve within the whale's digestive tract? More...
This Day in History

Sergei Krikalev, the "Last Soviet Citizen," Returns to Earth (1992)

In May 1991, the Soviet Union launched the Soyuz TM-12 mission to the Mir space station. Within months, all but one of the mission's crew members had returned to Earth. Krikalev, a Soviet flight engineer, stayed behind to help staff Mir and conduct experiments. That December, the USSR dissolved. When the cosmonaut finally returned to Earth the following spring, it was as a citizen of Russia. Krikalev has spent more time in space than any other human—how many days in total? More...
Today's Birthday

Saint Catherine of Siena (1347)

Born in Siena, Italy, as Caterina Benincasa, Catherine claimed to have mystic visions beginning in early childhood. In 1370, in response to a vision, she began sending letters to prominent figures. She later traveled to Avignon and influenced Pope Gregory XI to end the "Babylonian captivity" of the papacy and return to Rome. Although she never learned to write, she dictated hundreds of letters and some notable mystic works. Catherine is believed to have suffered from what condition? More...
Quotation of the Day
Masterpieces are not single and solitary births; they are the outcome of many years of thinking in common, of thinking by the body of the people, so that the experience of the mass is behind the single voice.

Virginia Woolf (1882-1941)

Idiom of the Day

letters after (one's) name

A series of abbreviations indicating the various levels of higher education or military honors one has received, thereby denoting a presumed level of intelligence, wisdom, or respectability. More...
Today's Holiday

San Marino Anniversary of the Arengo (2021)

The Republic of San Marino, a landlocked nation surrounded by Italy, is the smallest republic in the world. The Arengo was its first form of government, under which all of the patriarchs assembled to decide on important matters. March 25 is a national holiday commemorating the Arengo of 1906, which marked the birth of a Parliament elected directly by the people. The military corps appear in full uniform in front of Palazzo Begni; a laurel wreath is placed on the monument to the Fallen, and the ceremony continues with a mass in the Basilica to thank the founder saint, Marinus. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: opportunity

El Dorado - A place offering fabulous wealth or opportunity (after the legendary place in South America, "the gilded one"). More...

ease - First meant "opportunity, ability," or "means to do something." More...

hint - First meant "an occasion or opportunity." More...

occasion - Once had the specific sense of "an opportunity for finding fault or giving offense." More...

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