Daily Content Archive

(as of Saturday, April 21, 2012)
Word of the Day

pommel

Definition:(verb) Strike, usually with the fist.
Synonyms:biff
Usage: Arthur now uses the school's back entrance because bullies are often loitering in the front, waiting to pommel him in the face.
Article of the Day

The Zanj Rebellion

At the height of the Abbasid Empire, thousands of East Africans, known as Zanj, were transported as slaves to work in the salt marshes near the town of Basra, in what is now southern Iraq. Led by Ali ibn Muhammad, the exploited Zanj—free and enslaved alike—rebelled in 869 CE. They successfully raided towns and villages and even expanded north and established a capital. It took 15 years for the Abbasids to suppress the revolt, in part because they were also struggling with what other group? More...
This Day in History

Brazilian Patriot Tiradentes Hanged, Drawn, and Quartered (1792)

Born José Joaquim da Silva Xavier, Tiradentes gained his nickname, which means "tooth-puller," working as a healer in his youth. In the late 1780s, he joined and soon became the leader of a revolutionary movement against Portuguese rule in Brazil that was inspired by the American Revolution. In 1789, the movement was betrayed and its leaders were imprisoned. They were freed and exiled in 1792 with the exception of Tiradentes, who was executed in Rio de Janeiro. What was done with his remains? More...
Today's Birthday

Max Weber (1864)

Weber was a German sociologist and political economist whose most famous and controversial work, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, examines the relationship between Calvinist—or Puritan—morality, compulsive labor, bureaucracy, and economic success under capitalism. Weber also wrote about social phenomena such as charisma and mysticism, which he saw as antithetical to the modern world and its underlying process of rationalization. What other important works did he write? More...
Quotation of the Day
Girls are so queer you never know what they mean. They say No when they mean Yes, and drive a man out of his wits for the fun of it.

Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888)

Idiom of the Day

worthy cause

A cause that merits attention, aid, or action due to an inherent goodness of values or intention. More...
Today's Holiday

Parilia

This ancient Roman festival was held in honor of Pales, the protector of shepherds and their flocks. The Parilia was a pastoral rite observed not only in rural areas but also in Rome, where it coincided with the city's founding in 753 BCE. Although no sacrifices were offered, lustrations (purifying ceremonies) were carried out with fire and smoke. The stables were purified with smoke and swept out with brooms; in rural areas, heaps of straw were set ablaze, and shepherds and their flocks had to pass over them three times. The festival ended with a huge open-air feast. More...
In the News

Little Hope of Survivors in Pakistani Plane Crash

A commercial airplane crashed yesterday in Rawalpindi, about five aeronautical miles from the Islamabad airport where it was trying to land in bad weather. There is little hope that any of the 127 people on board survived, and though the plane went down in a wheat field, it is possible that there were some casualties on the ground. Investigators are trying to determine the cause of the crash and believe that severe weather—thunderstorms, high winds, and limited visibility—may have played a role. In 2010, another plane flying from Karachi to Islamabad crashed during landing, killing 152. More...
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