Daily Content Archive

(as of Thursday, September 26, 2019)
Word of the Day

undersell

Definition:(verb) To sell goods for a lower price than (another seller).
Synonyms:undercut
Usage: The executive instituted a store-wide sale in an effort to undersell the popular new competitor.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Noun Phrases

Noun phrases are groups of two or more words within a sentence that function grammatically as nouns. Noun phrases consist of a noun and what else? More...
Article of the Day

Mud-Puddling

Lepidopteran insects like butterflies and moths use diverse strategies to gather liquid nutrients. In addition to sucking nectar from flowers, some butterflies take in water and nutrients such as salts and amino acids from substrates like wet soil, dung, and carrion. In many species, only the males engage in mud-puddling, but they pass nutrients to females during mating, increasing their odds of reproductive success. Some butterflies draw nutrients from blood, tears, and what other substances? More...
This Day in History

MV Joola Disaster in Senegal (2002)

Just 11 years ago, a Senegalese ferry capsized off the coast of Gambia, claiming more lives than the notorious Titanic disaster. At least 1,863 people died in the sinking of the MV Joola, making it one of the deadliest civilian maritime disasters in history. A number of factors likely contributed to the tragedy, including bad weather, overloading—the ferry was carrying more than triple the number of passengers it was designed to hold—and a delayed rescue effort. How many survived? More...
Today's Birthday

Ivan Pavlov (1849)

Russian physiologist and Nobel laureate Ivan Pavlov is chiefly known for his discovery of the conditioned reflex, a reflex developed gradually by training in association with a specific repeated external stimulus. In the 1890s, he was investigating the gastric function of dogs when he noticed that the animals began salivating at the mere sound of the bell that preceded their feedings. He made this phenomenon the focus of his research. What other experimental subjects did he use in his research? More...
Quotation of the Day
When a subject is highly controversial...one cannot hope to tell the truth. One can only show how one came to hold whatever opinion one does hold. One can only give one's audience the chance of drawing their own conclusions as they observe the limitations, the prejudices, the idiosyncrasies of the speaker.

Virginia Woolf (1882-1941)

Idiom of the Day

can't even

slang Cannot handle (something). A phrase used (usually comically) when one cannot articulate their strong feelings (often of frustration) about something or someone. More...
Today's Holiday

Birthday of Johnny Appleseed (2022)

John Chapman—better known as Johnny Appleseed for his lifelong dedication to planting apple seedlings all over the American Midwest—was born on this day in 1774. While some frontier settlers thought he was a saint, or at the very least a religious fanatic, with his tin pot hat and coffee-sack tunic, the Native Americans regarded him as a great medicine man since he planted herbs as well as apples. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: sailing

aloof - Comes from sailing, in which ships keep clear of coastal rocks by holding the vessel "luff"—"to the windward"; so, to hold "a-luff" means to "keep clear." More...

jibe - Meaning "be compatible, consistent," it may come from the earlier jibe, "to shift a sail from side to side while sailing in the wind." More...

plain sailing - Probably comes from plane sailing, a way of determining a ship's position based on its moving on a plane (flat surface). More...

aback - Originated in sailing, as a ship was taken aback when a strong gust of wind suddenly blew the sails back against the mast, causing the ship to stop momentarily. More...

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