Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, October 07, 2013)
Word of the Day

engrossing

Definition:(adjective) Capable of arousing and holding the attention.
Synonyms:absorbing, fascinating, gripping, riveting
Usage: The book was so engrossing that I did not notice when the lights were turned out in the library.
Article of the Day

The Evil Eye

The people of the world have many superstitions, but one in particular is shared by a number of cultures, especially those of the Mediterranean and Middle East: the evil eye. Traditions and beliefs surrounding the evil eye vary, but it is generally thought to stem from envy and malice toward prosperity and beauty. Thus, in many cultures, unguarded praise of one's possessions or children is thought to invite misfortune. Who is typically thought to be most vulnerable to the evil eye? More...
This Day in History

French Statesman Leon Gambetta Flees Paris in a Balloon (1870)

Gambetta was a lawyer who gained recognition as an opponent of the Second Empire of Napoleon III and, in 1869, joined the parliamentary opposition. When Napoleon's empire fell to the Germans, Gambetta organized a government of national defense to drive them out. With Paris under a grueling German siege, he made a spectacular escape to Tours in a balloon, where he continued fighting the Germans as minister of the interior and of war. Gambetta died shortly after being wounded in what accident? More...
Today's Birthday

Niels Bohr (1885)

Bohr was a Danish physicist who was among the first to recognize the importance of an element's atomic number. He was also the first to apply the quantum theory to atomic and molecular structure, and his concept of the atomic nucleus was a key step in understanding nuclear fission. He won a Nobel Prize for Physics in 1922 for his work on atomic theory. Though he contributed to atomic bomb research during World War II, he later devoted himself to arms control. What element is named in his honor? More...
Quotation of the Day
Think not, is my eleventh commandment; and sleep when you can, is my twelfth.

Herman Melville (1819-1891)

Today's Holiday

Okunchi Matsuri (2015)

The Okunchi Festival in Nagasaki dates back to the 17th century, when many Chinese lived in the city and when both Dutch and Chinese traders regularly anchored their ships there. The festival pays tribute to these traders by presenting both a Dutch dance and a Chinese dragon dance, along with street fairs and other entertainment. The Okunchi Festival also features the traditional procession of the mikoshi—the ornate palanquin on which the local deity is believed to descend for a ride as it is carried through the streets. More...
In the News

The Dog Ate My...

The "dog ate it" excuse may not cut it in the classroom, but the US Treasury is apparently more receptive to this explanation than the typical schoolteacher, and for that at least one person can be grateful. A Montana man who mailed in the remnants of what he claimed were five $100 bills eaten by his one-eyed dog received a $500 check to replace the currency. The pet owner was nothing if not committed, following his dog around for days after the incident, collecting its droppings and eventually picking out and washing the digested bill fragments. Unpleasant as they were, his efforts ultimately paid off. More...
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