Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, October 15, 2012)
Word of the Day

inadvertent

Definition:(adjective) Happening by chance or unexpectedly or unintentionally.
Synonyms:accidental
Usage: An autobiography, when confronted by a careful editor with documentary evidence, is usually found to be full of obviously inadvertent errors.
Article of the Day

Eusapia Palladino

Born in Italy in 1854, Palladino was a Spiritualist medium who travelled the world hosting séances at which tables seemed to levitate and spirits supposedly appeared. Many notable people—including Pierre Curie and Arthur Conan Doyle—became devotees of her. Despite performing under strict conditions that she could control, Palladino was repeatedly exposed as a fraud who pulled stunts like lifting tables with her feet. This prompted some to hold down her shoes during séances. What did she do then? More...
This Day in History

I Love Lucy Premieres (1951)

In 1951, Lucille Ball became one of the first movie stars—and the first woman—to headline a television series. The prototypical situation comedy, I Love Lucy became a spectacular success, showcasing Ball's comic energy, flair for slapstick, and chemistry with her co-star and real-life husband, Desi Arnaz, as they portrayed the zany middle-class couple Lucy and Ricky Ricardo. The program is still syndicated today. What word was once prohibited from being used on I Love Lucy? More...
Today's Birthday

Virgil (70 BCE)

Virgil was a Roman poet and the author of the Eclogues, the Georgics, and the Aeneid, widely regarded as one of the greatest long poems in world literature. The Aeneid, Rome's national epic, tells the legendary story of the Trojan hero Aeneas, whose descendants become the founders of Rome. What later poet portrayed Virgil as the guide to Hell in his great literary classic The Divine Comedy? More...
Quotation of the Day
As a man without forethought scarcely deserves the name of a man, so forethought without reflection is but a metaphorical phrase for the instinct of a beast.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834)

Today's Holiday

Kenka Matsuri (2015)

The Kenka Matsuri (Roughhouse Festival) takes place October 14-15 in Shirahama, Japan, and thousands flock to the shrine where the festival is held. The roughhousing starts as teams of mikoshi-bearers jostle each other for position in the procession to the Matsubara Hachiman Shrine. Once they reach the shrine, they spin their heavy burden, raise it up high in the air and let it crash to the ground—difficult maneuvers designed to thrill the crowd. The mikoshi engage in a final battle in an open field, where thousands of cheering spectators take sides and and egg them on. More...
In the News

Overkill: Bull Shark's Powerful Bite

Bull sharks may not be the largest sharks lurking in the open water, but they are fearsome predators. Researchers say that, relative to its size, the bull shark's bite is more powerful than that of any other shark species. Adult bull sharks can bite with a force equal to about 6,000N at the back of the jaw and over 2,000N at the front. Experts are puzzled by the strength of the shark's bite, as it is much greater than that needed to kill and eat prey. More...
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