Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, January 15, 2016)
Word of the Day

firedrake

Definition:(noun) A fire-breathing dragon of Germanic mythology.
Synonyms:dragon
Usage: Unlike other firedrakes, the dragon in this story liked to recite poetry and was a connoisseur of fine wines.
Article of the Day

The Snowball Earth Hypothesis

Snowball Earth is a strongly disputed hypothesis developed to explain sedimentary glacial deposits at tropical latitudes from the Cryogenian period. The hypothesis proposes that, about 800 million years ago, the Earth was entirely covered with ice and that multicellular evolution accelerated when the climate began to warm up. Some dispute the feasibility of an entirely frozen ocean and prefer a “slushball” scenario to explain the ice's rapid movement. How could life survive in such a climate? More...
This Day in History

Otho Begins His 3-Month Reign as Roman Emperor (69 CE)

Otho and Roman Emperor Nero were once friends. Then, Otho's wife became Nero's mistress, and Nero dispatched Otho to the remote province of Lusitania. After patiently governing the province for a decade, Otho joined a revolt against the emperor in 68 CE. Nero committed suicide, and Otho took over. However, a rival soon challenged him for the throne. Just three months into his reign, Otho killed himself, presumably to avoid a civil war in his empire. How did he bid farewell to his friends? More...
Today's Birthday

Pierre-Joseph Proudhon (1809)

Believed to have been the first person to call himself an anarchist, Proudhon was a French journalist and social theorist best known for his radical assertion that "property is theft." Originally a printer, he joined the socialist movement after moving to Paris in 1838. There, he published radical newspapers and was imprisoned. His writings were deeply influential within the anarchist movement. In his famous essay "What is Government?" how does Proudhon define what it means to be governed? More...
Quotation of the Day
There are several good protections against temptations, but the surest is cowardice.

Mark Twain (1835-1910)

Today's Holiday

Suminuri Matsuri (2021)

Suminuri Matsuri is a New Year tradition observed for more than half a millennium in a district of Matsunoyama, Niigata Prefecture, Japan. People adorn their homes and streets for Oshogatsu (New Year's Day) with decorations made of paper, tree branches and bamboo. After the holiday, they take down the decorations and burn them, keeping the ashes for the Suminuri Festival. People take the ashes outside and mix them with snow, then rub the concoction on each other's faces for luck in the new year. More...
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