Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, February 15, 2017)
Word of the Day

jamboree

Definition:(noun) A noisy celebration.
Synonyms:gala, blowout
Usage: Mary could not bear to miss the party and begged her mother for permission to attend the jamboree.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Aspects of the Present Tense

We use different aspects with verbs in the present tense to describe exactly how an event is structured in relation to the present moment in time. What is the present simple structure used to express? More...
Article of the Day

The Exorcism of Anneliese Michel

Michel was a German woman who died in 1976 while undergoing exorcism treatments for demonic possession. She began suffering from seizures and depression when she was 16, the symptoms of which were not eased by conventional medical treatment. Convinced her condition was the result of demonic possession, Michel began a series of hour-long exorcism sessions that lasted nearly a year and ended with her death. Why were her parents and the priests who performed the exorcisms convicted of manslaughter? More...
This Day in History

USS Maine Sinks, Prompting the US to Declare War on Spain (1898)

In January 1898, the USS Maine was sent to protect American interests in Cuba, where an anti-Spanish insurrection was taking place. It sank weeks later, after an onboard explosion. Fueled by the conspiracy theories of American yellow journalism, outrage over the deaths of 260 of the ship's crew members helped push the nation toward the Spanish-American War. Several investigations into the sinking have since taken place, including one that was conducted in 1998. What were its findings? More...
Today's Birthday

Jeremy Bentham (1748)

Bentham was a British moral philosopher and legal theorist. A precocious student, he graduated from Oxford at age 15. In his writings, he became the earliest expounder of utilitarianism—the theory that the rightness or wrongness of an action is determined by its usefulness in bringing about the greatest happiness for all those affected by it. His work inspired much reform legislation, especially regarding prisons. What was done with Bentham's body after his death, in accordance with his will? More...
Quotation of the Day
In matters of thought and conduct, to be independent is to be abnormal, to be abnormal is to be detested.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)

Idiom of the Day

within arm's reach

Close enough to touch, either literally or hypothetically. Easily attainable. More...
Today's Holiday

Lupercalia (2017)

This was an ancient Roman festival during which worshippers gathered at a grotto on the Palatine Hill in Rome called the Lupercal. The sacrifice of goats and dogs to the Roman deities Lupercus and Faunus was part of the ceremony. Luperci (priests of Lupercus) dressed in goatskins and, smeared with the sacrificial blood, would run about striking women with thongs of goat skin. This was thought to assure them of fertility and an easy delivery. The name for these thongs—februa—meant "means of purification" and eventually gave the month of February its name. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: prune

amputate - Comes from Latin ambi, "around," and putare, "to prune, trim." More...

dried plum - Another name for a prune. More...

preen - Generally thought to be an alteration of prune, "cut branches." More...

purge - To purge a tree is to prune it; to purge a candle is to snuff it. More...

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