Daily Content Archive

(as of Thursday, January 28, 2016)
Word of the Day

burnish

Definition:(verb) To make smooth or glossy by or as if by rubbing; polish.
Synonyms:furbish, buff, flush
Usage: Every afternoon, she would obsessively burnish the floors until the parlor gleamed like an ice rink.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Negative Adverbs

Negative adverbs and negative adverbials are used to modify the meaning of a verb, adjective, other adverb, or entire clause in a negative way. What are double negatives? More...
Article of the Day

Crown-of-Thorns Starfish

Crown-of-thorns starfish are found on coral reefs throughout the Indo-Pacific region. These echinoderms, which can grow as large as 15.75 inches (40 cm) in diameter, are covered with thorny spines that release a neurotoxin capable of causing pain, nausea, and swelling in humans. They are voracious predators and are partly responsible for the destruction of coral reefs; a crown-of-thorns can consume as much as six square meters of reef annually. What sea creatures prey on these starfish? More...
This Day in History

Lego Patents Its Interlocking Plastic Bricks (1958)

The founder of Lego, a Danish carpenter named Ole Kirk Christiansen, began making wooden toys in 1932. By the late 1940s, he had begun making plastic ones, including "automatic binding bricks," which he patented in 1958. Today, Lego produces roughly 20 billion of those bricks annually, and today's pieces are still compatible with the originals. By producing some 306 million miniature, functioning replicas of this item each year, Lego could be considered the world's leading manufacturer of what? More...
Today's Birthday

Colette (1873)

In her highly eventful life, French novelist Colette freely flouted convention and repeatedly scandalized the public, but by her later years, she had become a national icon. Her numerous novels are marked by sensitive observations—particularly of women—and an intimate style. Among her works are The Vagabond, a fictionalized account of her time as a music-hall performer, and Gigi, a comedy about a girl reared to be courtesan. In 1907, she nearly caused a riot by doing what on stage? More...
Quotation of the Day
Earth has its boundaries, but human stupidity is limitless.

Gustave Flaubert (1821-1880)

Idiom of the Day

look (at something) through rose-colored glasses

To assume a generally optimistic and cheerful attitude (toward something); to focus on the positive aspects (of something). Primarily heard in US. More...
Today's Holiday

St. Charlemagne's Day (2018)

Charlemagne wasn't actually a saint at all; he was an emperor and the first ruler of the Holy Roman Empire, crowned in 800 by Pope Leo III. Although he was never able to read and write himself, Charlemagne, whose name means "Charles the Great," founded the University of Paris. In fact, his reign was marked by a huge cultural revival, including significant advances in scholarship, literature, and philosophy. He died on January 28, 814. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: nimble

agile - Means having quick motion and being nimble, from Latin agere, "to do." More...

flippant - Once meant "flexible, nimble, pliant." More...

chopsticks - In Chinese, the word for chopsticks originally meant "quick sticks" or "nimble ones." More...

wieldy - Means "easily controlled or handled," and once meant "agile, nimble." More...

In the News

"Doomsday Clock" Time to Be Adjusted to Show How Close We Are to the Apocalypse

The "Doomsday Clock" is set to be adjusted today to indicate how close the world's leading scientists think we are to a global catastrophe. Midnight on the clock represents "doomsday." The closer the minute hand is to midnight, the higher the chance of a ... More...
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