Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, April 8, 2016)
Word of the Day

chrism

Definition:(noun) A consecrated mixture of oil and balsam, used for anointing in church sacraments such as baptism and confirmation.
Synonyms:holy oil, sacramental oil
Usage: Though his parents told him it was unlikely, he believed he could remember the smell of the chrism used in his baptism.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Tense vs. Aspect

The past tense is combined with four traditional aspects to form the structures that are known as the past simple, the past continuous (or past progressive), the past perfect, and the past perfect continuous. The tense tells us when the action takes place in relation to time (in this case, the past). What does the added aspect tell us? More...
Article of the Day

The May 1968 Protests

May 1968 is the name given to a series of protests and a general strike that nearly led to the collapse of the de Gaulle government in France. It began as a series of student strikes at a number of universities and lycées in Paris and quickly spread throughout the country. Within a matter of weeks, roughly two-thirds of France's workforce, or 10 million people, were on strike. The vast majority of the protesters espoused left-wing causes and pushed for change in what areas of French society? More...
This Day in History

The WPA Is Established (1935)

Part of US President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal program, the Works Progress—later Projects—Administration aimed to stimulate the economy during the Great Depression and preserve the skills and self-respect of unemployed persons by providing them useful work. By the time it was terminated in 1943, the WPA had employed 8.5 million people and funded the construction of roads, buildings, bridges, parks, and airports—as well as the production of art. What did critics pejoratively call the WPA? More...
Today's Birthday

Mary Pickford (1892)

One of the first movie stars, Pickford earned a reputation as "America's Sweetheart" by playing a series of innocent, curly-haired young women on the silent screen. She was also a shrewd businesswoman. After cofounding United Artists, she came to exert a profound influence on the film industry as one of the most powerful figures in Hollywood. In 1927, she became one of the original founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. For what role did Pickford win an Academy Award? More...
Quotation of the Day
How dreadful it is when the right judge judges wrong.

Sophocles (496 BC-406 BC)

Idiom of the Day

Marie Celeste

A place, location, or high-occupancy vehicle (especially a ship) that is inexplicably deserted or abandoned. An allusion to the Mary Celeste, an American merchant brigatine that was discovered floating off the Azores Islands in 1872 with no one on board and still in seaworthy condition. (Note: The variant spelling of "Marie" is the more common usage for the idiomatic reference, likely due to its use in a story by Arthur Conan Doyle.) More...
Today's Holiday

Tater Days (2018)

Considered the oldest trade day in the U.S., Tater Days is now a celebration of the sweet potato in Benton, Kentucky. The event started in 1843 when sweet potatoes were a staple crop of the area. Today the "tater" is honored with a parade, flea market, gospel music, arts and crafts exhibits, and a Miss Tater Day contest. Most of the food served is some kind of sweet potato concoction. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: orbit

apsis - The extreme point of an orbit. More...

eccentric - First meant "not concentric" as it referred to an orbit in which the Earth was not precisely in the center or straying from a circular path; the area where two circles overlap is the eccentric. More...

exorbitant - Originally a legal term for a case outside of the scope of a law; since it implies going "out of orbit," it also first meant "deviating from the true path." More...

orbit - First meant "eye socket"; the eye is located in the eye socket or orbit. More...

In the News

This Groundbreaking Technology Will Soon Let Us See Exactly What's in Our Food

I have seen the future of food transparency, and it is optical. Also, it fits in your smartphone. Imagine a scanner the size of a grain of rice, built into your phone. You go to the grocery store and point it at something you want to buy. If it's an ... More...
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