Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, February 8, 2017)
Word of the Day

condescending

Definition:(adjective) Displaying a patronizingly superior attitude.
Synonyms:patronizing, arch
Usage: Sir William, no doubt, meant to be kind, but he was cold and condescending, and not a little pompous and conceited.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Possessive Determiners vs. Possessive Personal Pronouns

Possessive determiners are often confused with possessive personal pronouns ("mine," "yours," "his," "hers," "its," "ours," "theirs") since some of the forms overlap. How do possessive pronouns differ from possessive determiners? More...
Article of the Day

Tightrope Between the Towers

Philippe Petit is a French high-wire artist who gained fame for his illegal 1974 walk between the former Twin Towers in New York. After six years of planning, Petit used a 450-pound (204-kg) cable and a 26-foot (8-m), 55-pound (25-kg) balancing pole to make eight crossings between the still unfinished towers—walking, jumping, and lying down on the wire for more than an hour before being arrested when he returned to the tower roof. What punishment did Petit receive for his stunt? More...
This Day in History

The "Devil's Footprints" Appear in Devon, England (1855)

In February 1855, the Devil, perhaps consumed with wanderlust, apparently took a 40- to 100-mile stroll across Devon, England. His outing might have passed unnoticed, except that it was snowing heavily at the time. When residents awoke, they were dismayed to find unusual cloven hoofprints all over the place—not just on the ground but also on obstacles like walls and even roofs. Of course, it is possible that something other than the Prince of Darkness made these tracks. What are some theories? More...
Today's Birthday

Il Guercino (1591)

Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, better known as Il Guercino ("The Squinter"), was an Italian painter whose work had a profound impact on the development of 17th-century Baroque decoration. One of the outstanding draftsmen of his age, he was known for his frescoes, altarpieces, oils, and drawings. When he was 30, he was called to Rome by Pope Gregory XV and spent a productive two years there. Later, he moved to Bologna and was its leading painter until his death. How did he get his nickname? More...
Quotation of the Day
I never deal in transformations, for they are not honest, and no respectable sorceress likes to make things appear to be what they are not.

L. Frank Baum (1856-1919)

Idiom of the Day

like piffy on a rock bun

Conspicuous but ignored or left out, especially from a group or activity. (A "rock bun" or "rock cake" is a type of hard cake with currants; what "piffy" refers to is unknown.) Primarily heard in UK. More...
Today's Holiday

Yaya Matsuri (2022)

The Yaya Matsuri, held in Owase, Japan, during the first five days in February, features mikoshi (portable shrines) carried through the streets by groups of young men who meet and deliberately crash into each other. The festival takes its name from their shouts—"Yaya! Yaya!"—as they run into one another. Several special events, including dances, are held during the five-day festival. On the last night, there is a ceremony at the Owase Shrine to determine who will participate in the festival the next year. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: purposes

all intents and purposes - A redundant phrase, created for emphasis. More...

blamestorming - An intense discussion for the purposes of placing blame or assigning responsibility for a misdeed or failure. More...

celebrant, celebrator, reveler - Celebrants take part in religious ceremonies; celebrators or revelers gather for purposes of revelry. More...

teleology - The study of design in nature; the word's basic meaning is "the study of ends or purposes"—attempts to understand the purpose of a natural occurrence by looking at its results. More...

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