Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, January 24, 2018)
Word of the Day

commutation

Definition:(noun) (Law) The reduction in severity of a punishment imposed by law.
Synonyms:re-sentencing
Usage: The change from consecutive prison sentences to concurrent sentences is a commutation of punishment.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Defining Adjectives

Adjectives are used almost exclusively to modify nouns, as well as any phrase or part of speech functioning as a noun. For example, what is the adjective in the sentence, "A loud group of students passed by"? More...
Article of the Day

Star Fruit

Star fruit, so named because it has five prominent ridges that make it star-shaped on cross section, is the yellow- or green-skinned fruit of the carambola tree. Because it contains high levels of oxalic acid, it is typically sour and its juice can be used to remove stains from clothing. Like grapefruit, star fruit possesses compounds that make it dangerous to consume when taking certain medications, including those used to treat what kind of conditions? More...
This Day in History

Serial Killer Ted Bundy Is Executed (1989)

In December 1977, Ted Bundy escaped from jail in Colorado—for the second time—and fled to Florida. There, he resumed a streak of murders that he had begun in 1974, killing 12-year-old Kimberly Leach, among others. He was soon re-arrested, convicted of several murders, and sentenced to death. In an effort to avoid execution, Bundy confessed to numerous killings and promised to reveal more information in time. Despite this, he was executed in 1989. How many women is Bundy thought to have killed? More...
Today's Birthday

Edith Wharton (1862)

Born into upper-class American society, Wharton was privately educated. She married a Boston banker in 1885, but as her older husband's mental health deteriorated, she devoted herself to writing. The success of her 1905 novel The House of Mirth established her as a leading writer, but she is perhaps best known for 1911's Ethan Frome, which explores the grimmer possibilities of New England farm life. What common saying is thought to have originally referred to Wharton's family? More...
Quotation of the Day
The skeleton of the whale furnishes but little clue to the shape of his fully invested body.

Herman Melville (1819-1891)

Idiom of the Day

look for a dog to kick

To seek out someone to blame or castigate, especially someone who is not at fault. (Usually said in the continuous tense.) More...
Today's Holiday

Alasitas Fair (2018)

Each year on this day, a large marketplace in La Paz, Bolivia, is full of merchants who traditionally call out "Alasitas," an Aymara word meaning "buy from me," to potential buyers of their miniature wares. Shoppers can find tiny replicas of just about every kind of object—cars, houses, foods, furniture, clothes, tools, household goods, and, especially, money—and seek those which represent items they would like to have in the coming year. Presiding over all this downsized commerce is Ekeko, an Aymara god of material wealth, fertility, and good luck. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: insult

insult - In medicine and science, it can mean "trauma, something that disturbs normal functions." More...

political correctness - Can be an insult, accusation, joke, or the name of an effort to change a society by means of wide-ranging but often small-scale cultural reform. More...

outrage - The true etymology of outrage has nothing to do with out or rage—rather, it is a borrowing from French outrage, "insult, outrage," based on Latin ultra, "beyond," and -agium, a noun suffix; outrage first meant "lack of moderation." More...

umbrage - From Latin umbra, "shadow," in English it originally meant "shade, shadow," then shadowy suspicion, and then displeasure or resentment at a slight or insult. More...

In the News

Ultraviolet Lizards: Chameleon Bones Glow Fluorescent Under UV Light

Chameleons don't just change the color of their skin. Scientists have discovered their bones can glow fluorescent under ultraviolet light, creating intricate luminous patterns. The ability, it turns out, is widespread among chameleons from Madagascar ... More...
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