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Monday, December 29, 2014 | View Archive | Save / Send this Page ?
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Word of the Day



Definition: (verb) To corrupt morally; debase.
Synonyms:debauch, deprave, pervert
Usage:Ten minutes with these ruffians would vitiate the most honorable gentlemen. Discuss.

Article of the Day



Gargoyles are waterspouts that were used in medieval Europe to draw rainwater from church and cathedral roofs. They were fashioned imaginatively in the forms of human grotesques, beasts, and demons, supposedly to scare off evil spirits. This form of sculpture reached its peak in the Gothic period and declined with the introduction of lead drainpipes in the 16th century. A similar type of sculpture that does not work as a waterspout and serves only an ornamental function is called what? More... Discuss

In the News


Colombia to Honor Late Author on Banknotes

The government of Colombia will honor famed writer and native son Gabriel García Márquez by featuring his portrait on banknotes, a form of tribute already bestowed upon figures from the Colombian independence movement. Marquez, who died this past April, is heralded as the father of magical realism and won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982 for his masterpiece One Hundred Years of Solitude. The Colombian government will also take steps to preserve certain places from Márquez's life. More... Discuss

This Day in History


Wounded Knee Massacre (1890)

The Wounded Knee Massacre was the last major armed conflict of the Indian wars. After the death of Sitting Bull, a band of Sioux led by Big Foot fled into the badlands but was captured by the 7th Cavalry on December 28, 1890. The next day, as the Sioux were being disarmed, a scuffle broke out and a US officer was wounded. US troops then opened fire, killing about 200 men, women, and children in mere minutes. Who seized and occupied Wounded Knee for 71 days in 1973? More... Discuss

Today's Birthday


Charles Goodyear (1800)

Goodyear was the inventor of vulcanization, a process that makes rubber stronger, more elastic, and less susceptible to extreme temperatures. It is said that he discovered it quite by accident in 1839, when he dropped a rubber-sulfur mixture onto a hot stove. Despite patenting his process, he died deep in debt. He had no official connection to the famed Goodyear Tire Company, which was founded after his death and named in his honor. Why was he in prison when he began experimenting with rubber? More... Discuss

Quotation of the Day

To be wise and love Exceeds man's might: that dwells with gods above.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616) Discuss

English Language Forum


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v. To wear out completely
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Today's Holiday


Fiesta of the Black St. Benito (2014)

This fiesta is celebrated by a number of locales in the state of Zulia, Venezuela, and is especially popular in Bobures. After early morning mass, the chimbángueles, or vassals of the saint, put St. Benito's statue on a litter and surround it with flowers. They then carry it through the streets while performing an unusual bouncing kind of dance, in which they continually move forward and backward to the accompaniment of seven drums. Throughout the long procession, St. Benito's image is sprinkled with perfumes and presented with drinks of homemade whiskey. More... Discuss