Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, March 7, 2016)
Word of the Day

vallecula

Definition:(noun) Any furrow or channel on a bodily structure or part.
Synonyms:groove
Usage: The medical students studied the diagram depicting the vallecula between the hemispheres of the brain.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Gender in Nouns

There are some instances in which nouns are declined to show masculine or feminine gender. How is a noun made feminine? More...
Article of the Day

Proto-Sinaitic Script

Despite a century of study, researchers can agree on the decipherment of only a single phrase of Proto-Sinaitic script, a Middle Bronze Age alphabet dating to 1500 BCE. The Proto-Sinaitic script is one of two similar undeciphered scripts dated to that period and believed to be ancestral to nearly all modern alphabets. Many experts believe the language of Proto-Sinaitic inscriptions is Semitic, and cite the one phrase that was interpreted as proof of this hypothesis. What is the phrase? More...
This Day in History

Alexander Graham Bell Awarded US Patent for Telephone (1876)

Originally an audiologist, professor, and teacher of the deaf, Bell became interested in the idea of transmitting sound waves by wire when he misread a thesis by a German physicist. He mistakenly believed that the thesis implied such a transmission was possible. It did not, but Bell's idea was sound. Later, he described his mistranslation as a "valuable blunder." Three days after receiving a patent for his device, he spoke the first sentence ever transmitted by telephone. What was it? More...
Today's Birthday

Luther Burbank (1849)

The 13th child of a Massachusetts farmer, Burbank received little formal education, yet he went on to become a groundbreaking horticulturist. Influenced by Charles Darwin's writings, he began breeding plants at age 21. The rapid success of his Burbank potato, the russet variety of which is now the most widely-grown potato in the US, allowed him to move to California and establish an experimental farm, where he developed more than 800 varieties of plants. What is his spineless cactus used for? More...
Quotation of the Day
All of us have in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea—whether it is to sail or to watch it—we are going back from whence we came.

John F. Kennedy (1917-1963)

Idiom of the Day

harp away at (someone or something)

To complain about or dwell upon someone or something repeatedly and to the point of tediousness. More...
Today's Holiday

Bal du Rat Mort (2020)

A huge carnival and ball, Bal du Rat Mort is concentrated in the casino of Ostende, Belgium, but also spread out all over the town. The carnival began at the end of the 19th century, launched by members of the Oostende Art and Philanthropic Circle (Circle Coecilia) who named the affair for a café on Montmartre (a hilly part of northern Paris, home to many artists) where they had whiled away pleasant hours. People are masked at the ball, and there's a competition for the best costume. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: impact

fighting fire with fire - Early American settlers had to put out great prairie fires and learned that setting a circle or strip of land on fire could stop the path or lessen the impact of a big fire—giving us the phrase "fighting fire with fire." More...

freezing rain - Rain that freezes on impact with the ground or objects. More...

draw - The billiard ball's recoil after impact. More...

impinge, infringe - To impinge is to come into contact or encroach or have an impact; to infringe is to encroach on a right or privilege or to violate. More...

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