Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, May 15, 2017)
Word of the Day

cudbear

Definition:(noun) A purplish-red dye derived from certain lichens.
Synonyms:archil, orchil
Usage: The monks secured a small sample of cudbear to see if it could be used in their illuminated manuscripts.
Article of the Day

Randomness

Random processes are repeating processes whose outcomes follow no describable deterministic pattern. In mathematical, social, and religious settings, the term randomness refers to an innate "fairness" or lack of order or bias. Although randomness is an objective property, people often question whether a process is truly random. Many superstitions rest on the idea that seemingly random processes are actually governed by a hidden set of rules. How is randomness tied to the notion of free will? More...
This Day in History

The Great Gold Robbery (1855)

On the night of May 15, 1855, a shipment of gold bars and coins was sent from London to Paris, first via the South Eastern Railway and then on a ship across the English Channel. When the shipment arrived in Boulogne, France, the containers—all of which were locked and sealed—were found to be missing a large amount of the gold, worth about 12,000 British pounds at the time. The missing weight had been replaced with lead shot. A group of men was later arrested for the theft. How were they caught? More...
Today's Birthday

Williamina Paton Stevens Fleming (1857)

Shortly after Fleming emigrated from Scotland to the US with her husband, their marriage failed. Forced to support herself, she worked as a housekeeper for the director of the Harvard College Observatory, who soon hired her to do clerical work at the observatory. She quickly rose through the ranks and went on to make significant contributions to the field of astronomy—classifying thousands of stars and discovering numerous variable stars and novae. What award did she win just before her death? More...
Quotation of the Day
As to the sufferers, whose sole inheritance was labor, and who had lost that inheritance; who could not get work, and consequently could not get wages, and consequently could not get bread; they were left to suffer on, perhaps inevitably left.

Charlotte Bronte (1816-1855)

Today's Holiday

Feast of San Isidro the Farmer (Madrid) (2018)

The Feast of St. Isidore the Farmer is celebrated in Madrid, Spain, with eight days of bullfighting at the Plaza de Toros, colorful parades, and many artistic, cultural, and sporting events. Street vendors sell pictures of the saint, small glass or pottery bells believed to ward off harm from thunder and lightning, and whistle-stemmed glass roses, which provide a noisy accompaniment to the feasting and dancing that go on. The Festival of San Isidro is celebrated in other Spanish towns as well, particularly León and Alicante. More...
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