Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, May 15, 2017)
Word of the Day

cudbear

Definition:(noun) A purplish-red dye derived from certain lichens.
Synonyms:archil, orchil
Usage: The monks secured a small sample of cudbear to see if it could be used in their illuminated manuscripts.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Semi-Modal Auxiliary Verbs

Semi-modal auxiliary verbs, often simply called semi-modal verbs, are verbs that sometimes behave like modal auxiliary verbs. What four verbs are widely considered the standard set of semi-modal verbs? More...
Article of the Day

Randomness

Random processes are repeating processes whose outcomes follow no describable deterministic pattern. In mathematical, social, and religious settings, the term randomness refers to an innate "fairness" or lack of order or bias. Although randomness is an objective property, people often question whether a process is truly random. Many superstitions rest on the idea that seemingly random processes are actually governed by a hidden set of rules. How is randomness tied to the notion of free will? More...
This Day in History

The Great Gold Robbery (1855)

On the night of May 15, 1855, a shipment of gold bars and coins was sent from London to Paris, first via the South Eastern Railway and then on a ship across the English Channel. When the shipment arrived in Boulogne, France, the containers—all of which were locked and sealed—were found to be missing a large amount of the gold, worth about 12,000 British pounds at the time. The missing weight had been replaced with lead shot. A group of men was later arrested for the theft. How had they done it? More...
Today's Birthday

Williamina Paton Stevens Fleming (1857)

Shortly after Fleming emigrated from Scotland to the US with her husband, their marriage failed. Forced to support herself, she worked as a housekeeper for the director of the Harvard College Observatory, who soon hired her to do clerical work at the observatory. She quickly rose through the ranks and went on to make significant contributions to the field of astronomy—classifying thousands of stars and discovering numerous variable stars and novae. At what age did her formal education end? More...
Quotation of the Day
As to the sufferers, whose sole inheritance was labor, and who had lost that inheritance; who could not get work, and consequently could not get wages, and consequently could not get bread; they were left to suffer on, perhaps inevitably left.

Charlotte Bronte (1816-1855)

Idiom of the Day

take a fit

To become very or unreasonably angry or upset; to have an outburst of rage, frustration, or ill temper. More...
Today's Holiday

Aoi Matsuri (2022)

One of the three major festivals of Kyoto, Japan, the Aoi Matsuri, or Hollyhock Festival, is believed to date from the sixth century. The festival's name derives from the hollyhock leaves adorning the headdresses of the participants; legend says hollyhocks help prevent storms and earthquakes. Today, the festival, which was revived in 1884, consists of a re-creation of the original imperial procession. Some 500 people in ancient costume parade with horses and large lacquered oxcarts carrying the "imperial messengers" from the Kyoto Imperial Palace to the shrines. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: plate

assiette - A prepared dish of food, French for "plate, course of a meal." More...

dish, plate - Dish is a more general term and plate is more specialized. More...

plate - Etymologically, something "flat," from Latin plattus, "flat," and Greek platys, "broad." More...

placard - Comes from French plaquier, "to plate; lay flat." More...

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