Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, February 16, 2011)
Word of the Day

unornamented

Definition:(adjective) Lacking embellishment or ornamentation.
Synonyms:unembellished, plain, spare, bare
Usage: Strangers, who saw her for the first time, saw a lady in the prime of her life—a lady plainly dressed in unornamented white.
Article of the Day

Terror Birds

Phorusrhacids, commonly known as "terror birds" because of their role as apex predators, were large, carnivorous, flightless birds that roamed S America during the Cenozoic era, from about 62 million to 2 million years ago. They are believed to have migrated to N America when the Isthmus of Panama formed, bridging the formerly separated continents. The birds ranged in height from about 3 to 10 ft (1 to 3 m) and were likely fast runners. What are thought to be their closest modern-day relatives? More...
This Day in History

Burning of the USS Philadelphia (1804)

The USS Philadelphia was a 36-gun frigate that ran aground in October 1803 while blockading the coast of Tripoli. After some consideration, the Americans decided that the ship was too powerful a weapon to remain in enemy hands and sent a party of soldiers to recapture the ship and burn it. In carrying out "the most bold and daring act of the age," the assaulting party used what ruse to sail up to the ship without arousing the suspicion of its Tripolitan guards? More...
Today's Birthday

Hugo Marie de Vries (1848)

De Vries was a Dutch botanist whose theory of biological mutation and rediscovery of Mendel's laws of heredity made possible the active investigation and universal acceptance of Darwin's theory of evolution. He held that new species are formed chiefly through mutations—sudden, unpredictable, inheritable changes in an individual organism. Teaching at the University of Amsterdam, he introduced the experimental study of evolution. What important evolution-related term did he introduce to science? More...
Quotation of the Day
The almighty dollar, that great object of universal devotion throughout our land, seems to have no genuine devotees in these peculiar villages.

Washington Irving (1783-1859)

Idiom of the Day

hair-splittingly

With extremely minute, unimportant, or imperceptible differences or details. (Used before an adjective.) More...
Today's Holiday

Birthday of Kim Jong-Il (2017)

The birth date of the late North Korean leader Kim Jong-il (February 16, 1941-December 17, 2011) is marked with a two-day public holiday observed throughout the country. Large-scale public celebrations—including mass gymnastics displays, musical performances, fireworks, and military demonstrations—are centered in the capital city of Pyongyang. Special horticultural exhibitions feature the Kimjongilia, a flower cultivated to bloom around Kim's birthday. The government also often marks his birthday by allotting North Koreans extra food or electricity. More...
In the News

Food Choices Unaffected by Calorie Counts on Menus

In an attempt to encourage people to make healthier dietary choices and combat obesity, New York City began requiring fast-food restaurants to list the calories of their foods on menus in 2008. To study the effectiveness of this practice, researchers gathered restaurant receipts and surveyed patrons at fast-food restaurants both before and after mandatory labeling began. They found that more than half of teens surveyed noticed the calorie information once it was posted on menus but that only nine percent said it influenced their food choices. More...
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