Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, October 11, 2017)
Word of the Day

disengage

Definition:(verb) To release from something that holds fast, connects, or entangles.
Synonyms:withdraw
Usage: Fiercely he strove to disengage his weapon, but Hordle John bent his arm slowly back until, with a sharp crack, like a breaking stave, it turned limp in his grasp.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Using "To Be"

The verb "to be" is the most common linking verb. It can link the subject to an adjective (known as a "predicative adjective") that describes it, or to a noun, noun phrase, or pronoun that renames it. What are these are collectively known as? More...
Article of the Day

Smokeasies

Just as prohibition in the US led to speakeasies—establishments where alcohol was sold in contravention of the law—so too have smoking bans led to smokeasies—businesses, especially bars, that allow smoking despite a legal prohibition. To combat an expected loss of patrons, many bar owners have chosen to openly allow customers to smoke and regard the fines they incur as a cost of doing business. Others, however, employ stealth tactics to avoid penalties. What are some of their covert methods? More...
This Day in History

Second Vatican Council Convenes (1962)

Held in four sessions over the course of three years, the Second Vatican Council was a meeting of Catholic Church leaders with the announced purpose of reconsidering the position of the church in the modern world. Among many other changes, the council reformed the liturgy, permitting the use of the vernacular language, rather than Latin. Representatives from non-Catholic churches were invited to observe the sessions. What unexpected event nearly ended the council prematurely? More...
Today's Birthday

Jerome Robbins (1918)

Robbins was an influential American dancer and director and the choreographer of Broadway musicals such as The King and I, Peter Pan, and Fiddler on the Roof. He choreographed and directed both the stage and film versions of the immensely popular West Side Story, for which he shared an Academy Award for Best Director. He was reportedly so unpopular on the set of 1945's Billion Dollar Baby that the company watched silently as he accidently walked into what? More...
Quotation of the Day
I believe that Virtue shows quite as well in rags and patches as she does in purple and fine linen.

Charles Dickens (1812-1870)

Idiom of the Day

get on like a house afire

Of two or more people, to enjoy one another's company very much from the start and become good friends at once. (Used when people are meeting for the first time.) More...
Today's Holiday

Macedonian National Uprising Day (2017)

October 11 marks the anniversary of the beginning of the Macedonian people's uprising against fascism during World War II. This holiday is observed through formal ceremonies at which the prime minister and other dignitaries deliver addresses acknowledging the significance of this revolt to the spirit of Macedonian independence. In conjunction with this holiday, the Macedonian Parliament recognizes accomplishments in the areas of science, culture, art, and journalism through the "October 11" life achievement awards. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: stimulate

aperitif, appetizer - An aperitif is a drink to stimulate the appetite and an appetizer is a food that does this before a meal. More...

condiment - From Latin condimentum, from condire, "to pickle, preserve"; condiments are food substances used to heighten the natural flavor of foods, to stimulate the appetite, to aid digestion, or preserve certain foods. More...

innervate, enervate - Innervate means "to stimulate or give nervous energy," the opposite of enervate. More...

stimulate - From Latin stimulus, "pointed stick for goading animals." More...

In the News

Early Humans Formed Social Networks To Avoid Inbreeding

Even our human ancestors from over 30,000 years ago may have seen the dangers of inbreeding and devised complex social structures to avoid them. Could this explain the survival of some hominin species while the others died out? The mystery of the origins of ... More...
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