Daily Content Archive

(as of Thursday, August 2, 2018)
Word of the Day

bemuse

Definition:(verb) Cause to be confused emotionally.
Synonyms:discombobulate, bewilder, throw
Usage: He finds it important not to bemuse readers with pompous language and is noted for his straightforward, uncomplicated writing style.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Other Ways to Form the Future Perfect Continuous

Although we most commonly use the modal verb "will," there are two other ways we can form the future perfect continuous tense: "be going to" and "shall." Why are these constructions less common? More...
Article of the Day

Checkmate

Now employed in modern parlance to describe an irrefutable, strategic victory, "checkmate" is the term used in the game of chess to indicate the situation in which one player's king is threatened with capture and no escape or defense is possible. Delivering checkmate is the ultimate goal in chess, and the player who forces it wins the game. The term "checkmate" is an alteration of the Persian phrase shah mat, which means what? More...
This Day in History

The Gulf of Tonkin Incident (1964)

While on patrol in the Gulf of Tonkin, the USS Maddox was attacked by North Vietnamese torpedo boats. Two days later, US boats were supposedly attacked again without provocation. These events—known collectively as the Gulf of Tonkin Incident—prompted US Congress to pass a resolution allowing President Lyndon B. Johnson to use military force in Southeast Asia without a formal declaration of war, leading to increased US involvement in the Vietnam War. Had there in fact been a second attack? More...
Today's Birthday

Constantine I of Greece (1868)

The reign of Constantine I was a trying one. He succeeded his father as king of Greece in 1913 and was almost immediately faced with World War I. His neutralist, yet essentially pro-German, attitude caused the Allies and his Greek opponents to force his abdication and send him into exile in 1917. His leading opponent's fall from power in 1920 opened the door for Constantine to be restored to the throne, but his homecoming was short lived. Why did he abdicate for a second time in 1922? More...
Quotation of the Day
It is sometimes a little lonely to be surrounded everywhere by a happiness that is not your own.

Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1942)

Idiom of the Day

one card shy of a (full) deck

A pejorative phrase meaning not very intelligent or of questionable mental capacity. This expression can appear in many different forms and variations (e.g., "a few sandwiches short of a picnic," "one brick short of a load.," etc.). More...
Today's Holiday

Ilinden (Macedonia Republic Day) (2018)

August 2 is an official holiday in Macedonia commemorating the nation's first modern statehood. In 1903, Macedonian Christian nationalists led a rebellion against the Turkish Ottoman Empire. The rebels staged an uprising on August 2 of that year, a date that also marked the Christian feast day of Ilinden, or the prophet Elijah's ascension into heaven. The Ilinden uprising has become a cultural cornerstone in the mythology of modern Macedonia and is acknowledged as an important precursor to the establishment of the present-day Republic of Macedonia. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: powder

elixir - Derives from Arabic al-'iksir, "the powder for drying wounds." More...

kohl - A powder used to darken the eyes, it is from ancient Arabic and Egyptian times. More...

loaded for bear - Dating from the mid-1800s, it alludes to the heavy charge of powder or lead that hunters use for large animals, such as bears. More...

take a powder - Comes from "take a runout powder," with powder meaning "impetus, rush; impetuosity." More...

In the News

The destructive power of wildfires, seen from space

Multiple destructive and, in some cases, deadly, wildfires have been burning around the world in recent weeks, as global heat waves have left regions hot and dry. Over the years, wildfires have often been large enough to be visible from space, as their ... More...
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