Daily Content Archive

(as of Saturday, March 29, 2014)
Word of the Day

artificer

Definition:(noun) A skilled worker who practices some trade or handicraft.
Synonyms:artisan, journeyman, craftsman
Usage: There are native tanners, shoemakers, weavers, blacksmiths, stonecutters, and other artificers attached to each establishment.
Article of the Day

The Death Wail

The death wail is a cry of mourning performed ritually in response to the death of a loved one. Though found in numerous cultures, it is closely associated with Australian Aboriginal peoples. Some accounts of the death wail describe its presence in conjunction with fighting and disputes. For instance, Edward Eyre, a British colonial administrator in 19th-century Australia, documented its usage between members of two rival tribes. Where can you listen to an 1898 recording of a death wail? More...
This Day in History

Gustav III of Sweden Dies of Infected Gunshot Wound (1792)

Gustav III was King of Sweden from 1771 to 1792. Having inherited a weakened Swedish throne, he established a new constitution that increased the crown's power. His numerous enlightened reforms antagonized the nobility, and when a group of Swedish officers mutinied during his unpopular war on Russia, he reinstated absolute monarchy. Gustav planned to form a league of European monarchs to oppose the French Revolution, but Swedish nobles had him assassinated. Where was Gustav when he was shot? More...
Today's Birthday

Ernst Jünger (1895)

Early in his career, Jünger, a German writer and WWI veteran, published novels based on his army experience. Strongly influenced by German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, they glorified war and its sacrifice as the greatest physical and mental stimulants. He later opposed Hitler and rejected his own militarism, expressing instead a desire for peace in his wartime diaries and in futuristic novels like On the Marble Cliffs, an allegorical attack on Nazism. What is Jünger's best known work? More...
Quotation of the Day
Men are wise in proportion, not to their experience, but to their capacity for experience.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

Idiom of the Day

come close to blows

To nearly devolve into a physical fight. More...
Today's Holiday

Madagascar Martyrs' Day (2016)

Madagascar Martyrs' Day memorializes those who died in the Revolt of 1947 against the French. Madagascar had been a French colony since 1896 and then was named an overseas territory within the French Union in the 1946 constitution. On March 29, 1947, the people staged a nationalist uprising against colonial forces. Casualties from the conflict were reported as high as 80,000. French military courts tried the leaders of the revolt and executed 20 of them. On March 29, the Malagasy government and people remember those patriots who sacrificed their lives for their country's freedom. More...
In the News

And Then There Were Three

It's official: India is polio-free. Having gone three years without a single new case, India has been certified by the World Health Organization as free of the crippling disease. An incredible achievement in public health, the eradication of polio around much of the globe, and now India, shows just what can be accomplished when governments, healthcare agencies, and people work together toward a common goal. In 1988, when the Global Polio Eradication Initiative was first launched, more than 350,000 people in 125 countries were contracting polio annually. Last year, there were just 406 reported cases, and only three countries now remain polio-endemic. More...
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