Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, February 14, 2011)
Word of the Day

snigger

Definition:(verb) Laugh quietly.
Synonyms:snicker
Usage: The rude tourists snigger at the locals' outdated ways and dress.
Article of the Day

It's Raining Cats and Dogs!

Although it is a rare phenomenon, the occurrence of animals "raining" from the sky has been reported many times throughout history. One hypothesis often proposed to explain this phenomenon is that strong winds traveling over bodies of water sometimes pick up aquatic animals, such as fish or frogs, and carry them for up to several miles, finally depositing them on land. However, this phenomenon has never been witnessed or scientifically tested. What are some other possible explanations? More...
This Day in History

Israeli Knesset Convenes for the First Time (1949)

In 1948, following a failed attempt by the UN to divide Palestine, which had been under British mandate, the nation of Israel proclaimed its independence. The first legislative assembly, or Knesset, convened in February 1949 and succeeded the Assembly of Representatives that had functioned as the Jewish community's parliament during the Mandate era. The prime minister and the president are responsible to the Knesset, whose members are elected by popular vote. What does "knesset" mean in Hebrew? More...
Today's Birthday

Renée Fleming (1959)

Fleming is an American soprano who specializes in opera and lieder, a type of German art song intended for soloists. The daughter of two music teachers, Fleming graduated from SUNY Potsdam in 1981 with a degree in music education and went on to study at Eastman School of Music and Juilliard. Her professional debut was in Austria in 1986. She has won numerous awards for her roles in opera and for the classical music she has recorded. What did Fleming do to pay for her studies at Juilliard? More...
Quotation of the Day
Love is never lost. If not reciprocated, it will flow back and soften and purify the heart.

Washington Irving (1783-1859)

Idiom of the Day

gut-wrenching

Agonizing; extremely distressing, unpleasant, or emotionally disturbing; having a severe effect on one's feelings. More...
Today's Holiday

Birthday of Richard Allen (2017)

The son of two slaves, Richard Allen (1760-1831) was born in Philadelphia on this day. By the time he was 26 years old, he had saved enough money to buy his way out of slavery, and soon after that he established America's first African-American church. Allen's work among African Americans expanded at such a rapid rate that in 1816 he had to expand the organization of his church nationwide. Members of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church commemorate the birth of their founder and first bishop on this day. More...
In the News

"Lucy" Likely Walked Upright

New fossil evidence found in Hadar, Ethiopia, seems to confirm that Australopithecus afarensis—the early human ancestor made famous by the "Lucy" skeleton—did indeed walk upright. The evidence, a 3.2 million-year-old metatarsal bone, indicates that the foot of A. afarensis had a well-defined arch. While apes have flexible feet suited for climbing, arched feet like those of A. afarensis and modern humans are stiff, and this helps them propel the body forward more efficiently and absorb the shock of body mass coming down on just two legs instead of four. More...
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