Daily Content Archive

(as of Sunday, June 17, 2018)
Word of the Day

leave-taking

Definition:(noun) The act of departing politely.
Synonyms:parting, farewell
Usage: Captain Rawdon himself was much more affected at the leave-taking than the resolute little woman to whom he bade farewell.
Article of the Day

The Gila Monster

Named for the Gila River basin where it once abounded, the Gila monster is one of only two known species of venomous lizard. Found in the southwestern US and northwestern Mexico, it averages 18 in (45 cm) in length, feeds on birds, mammals, and eggs, and uses its thick tail as a food reservoir. Though the Gila monster's neurotoxic venom can be fatal, the lizard moves too slowly to present a serious threat to humans. A synthetic version of one of its salivary proteins may help treat what disease? More...
This Day in History

Last Dusky Seaside Sparrow Dies in Captivity (1987)

Thousands of dusky seaside sparrows once inhabited the natural salt marshes around Merritt Island and the area along the St. Johns River in southern Florida. The non-migratory birds lived exclusively in this small area, and this proved to be their undoing. From the 1940s onward, pesticides, pollution, and habitat loss caused the subspecies' population to decline precipitously. By 1979, just six males remained. Why were the remaining birds eventually relocated to Walt Disney World theme park? More...
Today's Birthday

Edward I of England, AKA Edward Longshanks (1239)

Edward became king upon the death of his father, Henry III, in 1272 but was not crowned until he returned from a crusade two years later. His 35-year reign was characterized by constant warfare, including long and costly campaigns to conquer Wales and Scotland. It was a struggle to fund these endeavors, and he did so, in part, by exploiting the Jews under his rule. Finally, in 1290, he expelled them from England and seized their property. For how long did his Edict of Expulsion remain in effect? More...
Quotation of the Day
There are not more than five cardinal tastes (sour, acrid, salt, sweet, bitter), yet combinations of them yield more flavors than can ever be tasted.

Sun Tzu (544 BC-496 BC)

Today's Holiday

Saigusa Matsuri (2018)

For hundreds of years the citizens of Nara, Japan, have searched the surrounding mountains for lilies, gathering them each summer in preparation for the Lily Festival at the Isagawa Shrine. A Shinto priest carries a large bundle of flowers to the altar as an offering. Then the seven women perform a special dance in which they wave lily stalks in a motion designed to ward off the problems brought on by the wet weather typical this time of year. Afterwards, the lilies are mounted on a float and taken out in a procession through the streets of Nara, where it is believed that they will purify the air. More...
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