Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, May 26, 2017)
Word of the Day

invertebrate

Definition:(adjective) Lacking a backbone or spinal column; not vertebrate.
Synonyms:spineless
Usage: The sixth grade class groaned in unison as the students learned that they would be dissecting worms during their study of invertebrates.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Middle Voice

The so-called middle voice is an approximate type of grammatical voice in which the subject both performs and receives the action expressed by the verb. Middle voice and active voice use the same verb structure in a sentence, so how can we distinguish between the two? More...
Article of the Day

The Blombos Cave

Located in a limestone cliff on the coast of South Africa, Blombos Cave is an archaeological site made famous in the 1990s, when excavators uncovered 75,000-year-old beads, 80,000-year-old bone tools, and some of the earliest evidence of fishing, dating back approximately 140,000 years. The finds suggest the existence of cognitive behaviors not previously associated with Middle Stone Age people. What other items have been found at the site? More...
This Day in History

Andrew Johnson Avoids Impeachment by One Vote (1868)

Johnson became president following Abraham Lincoln's assassination. When he attempted to dismiss his Secretary of War without senatorial consent, congressional leaders—for the first time in US history—sought to remove the president from office. Their first attempt failed, but in 1868, the House passed a resolution of impeachment against him. During the trial, the charges proved weak, and the two-thirds vote needed for conviction failed by one vote. Which senators voted against their party? More...
Today's Birthday

Dorothea Lange (1895)

Lange was a profoundly influential American documentary photographer. During the Great Depression, her photos of stark poverty led to her employment by a federal agency to bring the plight of the poor to public attention. Her images were so effective that the government was compelled to establish camps for migrant laborers. Lange produced several other photo essays, including one documenting the WWII internment of Japanese-Americans. Who is the subject of her best-known photo, "Migrant Mother"? More...
Quotation of the Day
As long as war is regarded as wicked it will always have its fascination. When it is looked upon as vulgar, it will cease to be popular.

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

Idiom of the Day

grab and go

(used before a noun; sometimes hyphenated) Characterized by being very quick and easy to obtain, access, and use. More...
Today's Holiday

Ute Bear Dance (2019)

An ancient ceremony of the Southern Ute Indians, the Ute Bear Dance is now held on Memorial Day weekend in Ignacio, Colorado. Originally the ritual was held in late February or early March. It stemmed from the belief that the Utes were descended from bears, and the dance served both to help the bears coming out of hibernation and to gain power from them. Today the dance is largely a social occasion. Lines of women and men advance toward each other, gradually dancing in pairs. The dancing goes on until sunset, when there is a feast. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: lessen

alleviate - Can mean "diminish the weight of"; to alleviate is not to cure, but rather to lighten, lessen, or relieve to some degree. More...

minute, second - Latin minutus, "small," came from minuere, "lessen," and the term pars minuta prima, "first small part," was applied to a 60th of a whole—a minute, originally of a circle and later of an hour; likewise, a second was originally a secunda minuta, a 60th of a 60th. More...

mince - Can mean "lessen or diminish (something)" or "minimize." More...

bated breath - The expression is based on bate, meaning "to moderate, restrain" or "to lessen, diminish"; though bated was once rather common, it is now rare except in this set expression. More...

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