Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, February 15, 2019)
Word of the Day

enliven

Definition:(verb) To make lively or spirited.
Synonyms:animate, invigorate
Usage: They found her a charming companion, and her dancing and laughter...did much to enliven their journey and keep them contented.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Aspects of the Present Tense

We use different aspects with verbs in the present tense to describe exactly how an event is structured in relation to the present moment in time. What is the present simple structure used to express? More...
Article of the Day

It's Raining Cats and Dogs!

Although it is a rare phenomenon, the occurrence of animals "raining" from the sky has been reported many times throughout history. One hypothesis often proposed to explain this phenomenon is that strong winds traveling over bodies of water sometimes pick up aquatic animals, such as fish or frogs, and carry them for up to several miles, finally depositing them on land. However, this phenomenon has never been witnessed or scientifically tested. What are some other possible explanations? More...
This Day in History

USS Maine Sinks, Prompting the US to Declare War on Spain (1898)

In January 1898, the USS Maine was sent to protect American interests in Cuba, where an anti-Spanish insurrection was taking place. It sank weeks later, after an onboard explosion. Fueled by the conspiracy theories of American yellow journalism, outrage over the deaths of 260 of the ship's crew members helped push the nation toward the Spanish-American War. Several investigations into the sinking have since taken place, including one that was conducted in 1998. What were its findings? More...
Today's Birthday

Jeremy Bentham (1748)

Bentham was a British moral philosopher and legal theorist. A precocious student, he graduated from Oxford at age 15. In his writings, he became the earliest expounder of utilitarianism—the theory that the rightness or wrongness of an action is determined by its usefulness in bringing about the greatest happiness for all those affected by it. His work inspired much reform legislation, especially regarding prisons. What was done with Bentham's body after his death, in accordance with his will? More...
Quotation of the Day
Love is never lost. If not reciprocated, it will flow back and soften and purify the heart.

Washington Irving (1783-1859)

Idiom of the Day

within arm's reach

Close enough to touch, either literally or hypothetically. Easily attainable. More...
Today's Holiday

Great Backyard Bird Count (2019)

The Great Backyard Bird Count takes place every year over four days in mid-February throughout the United States and Canada. Volunteers of all ages and experience, known as "citizen scientists," spend at least 15 minutes counting birds from any location. Then they report the number of birds and species they have seen via the Internet. This gives scientists a real-time portrait of which birds are where in North America. The event was launched in 1998 by the National Audubon Society and the Cornell University Ornithology Lab. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: prune

amputate - Comes from Latin ambi, "around," and putare, "to prune, trim." More...

dried plum - Another name for a prune. More...

preen - Generally thought to be an alteration of prune, "cut branches." More...

purge - To purge a tree is to prune it; to purge a candle is to snuff it. More...

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