Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, October 18, 2013)
Word of the Day

astound

Definition:(verb) Affect with wonder.
Synonyms:amaze, astonish
Usage: I used to believe that nothing could astound me, but daredevil skydiver Felix Baumgartner proved me wrong when he jumped from a balloon 24 miles above the Earth.
Article of the Day

Mahabodhi Temple

Siddhartha Gautama, the man who would come to be revered as Buddha, was a prince who lived a sheltered life of luxury until he left his palace and witnessed real-world suffering. Renouncing his wealth, he became a wandering ascetic and is said to have gained enlightenment while meditating under a bodhi tree. A few hundred years later, around 250 BCE, Mahabodhi Temple, or "Great Awakening Temple," was built on the site. Who initiated the restoration of the Bodh Gaya, India, temple in the 1880s? More...
This Day in History

Jerusalem's Church of the Holy Sepulcher Destroyed (1009 CE)

The Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem's Old City is venerated by most Christians as the site of Jesus' burial chamber and has been an important destination of pilgrimage since the 4th century. Its destruction in 1009 by caliph Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah is often viewed as a direct impetus for the Crusades, though the church was rebuilt prior to the Crusaders' arrival. The custodianship of the church is now grudgingly shared by several Churches. Who holds the key to the church's main entrance? More...
Today's Birthday

Lee Harvey Oswald (1939)

Oswald, a US Marine who defected to the Soviet Union only to return and settle in Dallas, Texas, with his Russian wife and daughter, is widely believed to have been the assassin of US President John F. Kennedy. On November 22, 1963, Oswald allegedly fired three shots from a window on the sixth floor of the Texas State School Book Depository, killing Kennedy. While in police custody, Oswald was murdered by nightclub owner Jack Ruby. Whom did Oswald allegedly try to assassinate earlier in 1963? More...
Quotation of the Day
I came into this world, not chiefly to make this a good place to live in, but to live in it, be it good or bad.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)

Today's Holiday

Alaska Day (2015)

Alaska Day commemorates the formal transfer of Alaska from Russia to the United States on October 18, 1867. The event, which took place at Sitka, was a sad one for the Russian colonists who had already made Alaska their home. After the transfer, Alaska was eventually organized as a territory and maintained this status until it became a state on January 3, 1959. Today, the lowering of the Russian flag and the raising of the Stars and Stripes is reenacted every year as part of this festival in Sitka. Other events include a parade and a period costume ball. More...
In the News

Floodgates on Their Way to Keeping Venetians' Feet Dry

High tides swamp Venice on an annual basis, but a barrier project 10 years in the making will hopefully protect the historic city from the worst of it. Billions have already been spent on the "Moses" project, and it is at least two years from completion. Some question whether the ambitious project will pay off, but planners are heartened by the first successful test of the system, in which four—of what will eventually be 78—large floodgates were raised from the seabed. More...
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