Daily Content Archive

(as of Tuesday, March 12, 2013)
Word of the Day

mutable

Definition:(adjective) Capable of or tending to change in form or quality or nature.
Synonyms:changeable
Usage: The concierge warned me that the island's mutable weather patterns could interfere with our plans for an outdoor wedding, but our big day turned out to be sunny and mild.
Article of the Day

The Hermitage

One of the oldest and largest museums in the world, the Hermitage was founded by Catherine the Great in 1764 but was not opened to the public until nearly a century later. It occupies a complex of historic buildings and palaces in Saint Petersburg, Russia, and is home to more than three million artifacts and works of art—including the largest collection of paintings in the world. In 1985, what bizarre incident befell Rembrandt's painting Danaë, necessitating years of restoration work? More...
This Day in History

California's St. Francis Dam Fails (1928)

Constructed between 1924 and 1926, the St. Francis Dam was a concrete gravity-arch dam designed to act as a reservoir to store water for the Los Angeles Aqueduct. In 1928, the dam catastrophically failed, and the resulting flood of 12 billion US gallons (45 billion liters) of water killed more than 450 people. The dam's collapse was the worst American civil engineering failure of the 20th century and remains the second-greatest loss of life disaster in California's history, after what event? More...
Today's Birthday

Captain Charles Cunningham Boycott (1832)

Boycott was the estate agent for the Earl of Erne, an absentee landowner in County Mayo, Ireland, at a time when the Irish Land League was pressing for agrarian reform. In 1880, Boycott's refusal to reduce rents for tenant farmers, combined with his attempted eviction of 11 of them, led the League to launch a campaign of ostracism and isolation—now known as a "boycott"—against him and his family. Upon finding himself suddenly without servants, farmhands, or local services, Boycott did what? More...
Quotation of the Day
The doctrine of innate ideas is one of the most admirable faiths of philosophy, being itself an innate idea and therefore inaccessible to disproof...Among innate ideas may be mentioned the belief...in the greatness of one's country, in the superiority of one's civilization, in the importance of one's personal affairs, and in the interesting nature of one's diseases.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)

Idiom of the Day

a bridge too far

An act or plan whose ambition overreaches its capability, resulting in or potentially leading to difficulty or failure. Taken from the 1974 book A Bridge Too Far by Cornelius Ryan, which details the Allies' disastrous attempts to capture German-controlled bridges in the Netherlands during World War II. More...
Today's Holiday

Bok Kai Festival (2016)

The Bok Kai Festival is a two-day event in Marysville, California, that began as a Chinese religious event to honor Bok Eye, the god who has the power to control flooding and the waters of irrigation and the rains. Today, the celebration of Bomb Day—Bok Eye's birthday—with the Bok Kai Festival is a community-wide affair. A parade is another highlight of the festival, and a 150-foot dragon is the highlight of the parade. The Bok Kai Temple in Marysville is the only religious shrine to Bok Eye outside of Asia and is a designated historical landmark. More...
In the News

Tensions Rising on Korean Peninsula

International relations on the Korean Peninsula are deteriorating, with Pyongyang declaring invalid the armistice that ended the Korean War and severing a cross-border hotline. It blamed new UN sanctions and joint US-South Korean military drills—both of which it labeled acts of war—for prompting it to take such action. While this is not the first time North Korea has done either of these things, tensions are high, and there is concern that hostilities could escalate. More...
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