Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, August 14, 2015)
Word of the Day

amphetamine

Definition:(noun) A central nervous system stimulant that increases energy and decreases appetite; used to treat narcolepsy and some forms of depression.
Synonyms:pep pill, upper, speed
Usage: The doctor prescribed amphetamines to stimulate the narcoleptic patient's nervous system so that he would be less likely to unexpectedly fall asleep.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Plural Possession with Apostrophes

If there is more than one person, place, or thing that possesses something else, then the rules for showing possession change slightly. Because an "-s" is usually added to a word to make it plural, the "-s" that follows the apostrophe is dropped. What marks possession in this case? More...
Article of the Day

The Highland Games

The modern Highland Games began in the 1780s as an organized effort to revive Scottish Highland traditions. These celebrations of Scottish and Celtic heritage center around competitions in piping, drumming, dancing, and Scottish heavy athletics. The caber toss, in which a competitor balances a long, heavy wooden pole vertically and then tosses it, has become a recognized symbol of the Highland Games. What other feats of strength are often included in the Games' athletic competitions? More...
This Day in History

Final Public Execution in the US (1936)

In 1936, convicted rapist Rainey Bethea was sentenced to be hanged in Owensboro, Kentucky, at a time when such hangings were conducted publicly. Because the county sheriff supervising the execution was a woman, the case sparked national press coverage, and up to 20,000 spectators gathered to watch the event, the last of its kind in the US. Two years later, the Kentucky legislature officially put an end to public executions. How did newspaper reports depict the hanging? More...
Today's Birthday

Pope Pius VII (1742)

Pius VII became pope in 1800, at a time of turmoil for the Catholic Church. A decade earlier, during the early stages of the French Revolution, the National Assembly tried to subordinate the Church to the state. In 1801, Pius and Napoleon negotiated an end to the breach, but relations remained strained. In one notable incident, Napoleon took his crown from the pope's hands during a ceremony and crowned himself. What unusual headgear did Pius VII allegedly wear during his own coronation and why? More...
Quotation of the Day
A cynic can chill and dishearten with a single word.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

Idiom of the Day

over the hills and far away

To or at some distant, remote point or location. More...
Today's Holiday

Torta dei Fieschi (2018)

When Count Fieschi of Lavagna in Genoa, Italy, was married in 1240, he invited his guests—and everyone else in town—to share a cake that was more than 30 feet high. The citizens of Lavagna haven't forgotten his generosity, and each year they celebrate the event on August 14. Dressed in costumes, they parade to the town square, where they pin to their clothes a piece of paper (blue for men, white for women) on which a word is written. When they find someone wearing the same word, the couple is given a piece of "Fieschi's cake." More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: trip

trip - A group of goats. More...

rustication - A trip to the country. More...

safari - From Swahili, from Arabic safar, "journey, trip." More...

supplant - Literally means "trip up," from Latin supplantare, "trip up, overthrow." More...

In the News

What's in a Name? Google's Alphabet and the Quirky Science of Corporate Naming

What's in a name? Most corporate naming experts say Google's decision to reorganize its businesses under a new holding company called "Alphabet" is close to letter perfect. Because it is part of Google's corporate structure, Alphabet is not likely ... More...
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