Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, July 15, 2020)
Word of the Day

paltry

Definition:(adjective) Contemptibly small in amount.
Synonyms:petty, trivial, trifling, beggarly, derisory, measly, piddling
Usage: The miserly millionaire was criticized for his paltry donation, but even public shaming was not enough to make him part with more money.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Indicative Mood

The indicative mood is a type of grammatical mood used to express facts, statements, opinions, or questions. It is the sole realis mood in English. In which tenses can the indicative mood can be used? More...
Article of the Day

Gegenschein

The gegenschein is an oval patch of faint light directly opposite the sun in the night sky. It is so faint that it can only be seen in the absence of moonlight and is lost in the light of the Milky Way except in the spring and fall. It is thought to be caused by sunlight reflecting off dust particles in space that may be part of Earth's tail of dust and gas. Danish astronomer Theodor Brorsen published an account of the phenomenon in 1854, about 50 years after it was observed and named by whom? More...
This Day in History

The Chowchilla School Bus Kidnapping (1976)

Chowchilla is a small California town that made national headlines when kidnappers took control of a school bus full of children in 1976. The 26 children and their bus driver, Ed Ray, were driven around in two vans for 11 hours before being forced into a moving van buried in a quarry. After 16 hours underground, Ray and the children managed to escape. All were safely returned home, and the kidnappers were soon arrested. What technique helped Ray to recall the kidnappers' license plate number? More...
Today's Birthday

Dame Iris Murdoch (1919)

An Irish-born novelist and philosopher, Murdoch studied at Cambridge under prominent philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein before pursuing a career in writing. Her novels focus on the idea that free will is illusory and depict humans as "accidental" creatures, seemingly free but actually bound to self, society, and the natural world. She penned 26 novels and many philosophical works before Alzheimer's ended her writing career. To what non-medical condition did she initially attribute her symptoms? More...
Quotation of the Day
The conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it.

Joseph Conrad (1857-1924)

Idiom of the Day

look for a dog to kick

To seek out someone to blame or castigate, especially someone who is not at fault. (Usually said in the continuous tense.) More...
Today's Holiday

Hakata Gion Yamagasa (2021)

The Gion Matsuri at Kyoto is the model for several other Gion festivals in Japan, and the largest of these is the Gion Yamagasa Festival at Fukuoka. The elaborate floats for which the festival is famous are called yamagasa, and beautiful new dolls are made for them each year. The festival begins on July 1, when participants purify themselves by collecting sand from the seashore. The highlight of the festival occurs on the morning of July 15, when the Oiyama race is held. This is a five-kilometer race in which teams of 28 men run while carrying yamagasa, weighing about a ton. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: tie

dogfall - A draw or tie. More...

dead heat - If two horses tied in a heat, the heat did not count and was called "dead"; now any tie can be called a dead heat. More...

knit - Literally first meant "tie with or in a knot." More...

moor - Meaning "tie up a boat," it was probably borrowed from German or Dutch. More...

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