Daily Content Archive

(as of Tuesday, September 03, 2013)
Word of the Day

brusque

Definition:(adjective) Abrupt and curt in manner or speech; discourteously blunt.
Synonyms:curt, short, gruff
Usage: I did not think of asking him for details, and he told me the story roughly in brusque, disconnected sentences.
Article of the Day

Ceramic Knives

Ceramic knives provide certain advantages over metal blades. They are harder than steel and hold their edge longer. On the rare occasion when a ceramic knife needs sharpening, a grinding wheel coated in diamond dust must be used. Their nonconductive, nonmagnetic properties make them useful in bomb disposal, and their resistance to corrosion is ideal for scuba divers. However, ceramic knives are also more brittle and shatter more easily than metal ones. Why is metal often used in their handles? More...
This Day in History

Qatar Becomes an Independent State (1971)

Qatar, located on a small peninsula in the Persian Gulf, became a British protectorate in 1916. It remained under British control for more than 50 years, a period during which oil was discovered there and Qatar rapidly modernized. In 1968, Britain declared that it would disengage from the region, and Qatar joined a federation of nearby states. However, disputes arose, and, in 1971, Qatar became an independent state. Prior to the discovery of oil there, Qatar was noted for what unusual industry? More...
Today's Birthday

Diane de Poitiers (1499)

As a lady-in-waiting at the French royal court, Diane captivated the man who would become King Henry II of France—though he was 20 years her junior. After the death of her husband, she became Henry's mistress. Following his coronation in 1547, Diane held court as queen in all but name, while the real queen lived in relative obscurity. However, after Henry's 1559 death, she was forced to retire from court. Her death may have been the result of drinking too much gold in an elixir meant to do what? More...
Quotation of the Day
There is—though I do not know how there is or why there is—a sense of infinite peace and protection in the glittering hosts of heaven.

H.G. Wells (1866-1946)

Idiom of the Day

(one's) final resting place

The location where one's body is interred after death. More...
Today's Holiday

Hatch Chile Festival (2017)

This event pays tribute to the green chili (as it is more commonly spelled outside of New Mexico), New Mexico's state vegetable. The small town of Hatch is the center of the chili-growing industry. At festival time, the aroma of chilis permeates the town, and a marvelous variety of chilis in all forms can be purchased: dried red chilis in ornamental braids called ristras, chili salsa, chili jelly, chili wine, and chili con carne. Besides food, the festival features the crowning of a Green Chile Queen, a skeet shoot, a fiddling contest, a cook-off, and a ristra-making contest. More...
In the News

Poverty Burdens the Brain and Cuts IQ

Research on sugarcane farmers in rural India and low and middle-income shoppers at a US mall suggests that financial concerns tax the brain, leading to a drop in cognitive function. Worrying about money costs people up to 13 IQ points—an effect comparable to missing an entire night's sleep—and makes them more prone to errors, which in turn can exacerbate their financial problems and make it even harder to escape from poverty. More...
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