Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, January 22, 2020)
Word of the Day

dupery

Definition:(noun) Something intended to deceive; deliberate trickery intended to gain an advantage.
Synonyms:hoax, put-on, humbug, fraudulence
Usage: Even the most intelligent among us may be tempted by the dupery of Internet con artists if we are not careful.
Article of the Day

Birdsongs

Birds sing using the syrinx, the avian vocal organ. Singing is usually confined to males and is at its height during the breeding season, when it is used to attract a mate. Birdsongs are usually more complex and longer than birdcalls. There is evidence that songs are learned, while certain calls are inherited. A male chaffinch hatchling, for example, sings a "subsong" but only learns the true song by hearing and imitating adult males. Deaf birds sing, but their songs are different in what way? More...
This Day in History

Swiss Guard Arrives at the Vatican (1506)

Though various units of Swiss Guards have existed throughout history, the most famous unit—and the only one remaining—is responsible for the safety of the Pope. Known for their colorful uniforms, the guards must be single, Swiss, and Catholic and must have completed Swiss military training. The first 150 Swiss mercenaries were invited to the Vatican during the reign of Pope Julius II. In 1527, 147 of the Swiss Guards were killed while helping the Pope escape from whom? More...
Today's Birthday

Pierre Gassendi (1592)

As a priest and a professor, Gassendi lectured on theology in his native southeastern France. However, as a philosopher, scientist, and astronomer, he was compelled to try to reconcile his scientific beliefs with the teachings of the church. Dissatisfied with the teachings of Aristotle, he came to espouse empiricism and atomism, the belief that tiny, indestructible particles form the basic building blocks of the entire universe. In 1631, he became the first person to observe what? More...
Quotation of the Day
Few are the hearts whose happy lot it is at once to recognize in each other's voices the partner intended for them by Providence.

Edwin Abbott (1838-1926)

Today's Holiday

St. Vincent's Day (2021)

São Vicente St. Vincent of Saragossa is the patron saint of Lisbon, Portugal. In Lisbon, people celebrate his feast day with processions and prayers. But in the surrounding rural areas, there are a number of folk traditions associated with this day. Farmers believe that by carrying a resin torch to the top of a high hill on January 22, they can predict what the coming harvest will be like. If the wind extinguishes the flame, the crops will be abundant; if the torch continues to burn, a poor growing season lies ahead. More...
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