Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, June 05, 2015)
Word of the Day

escarpment

Definition:(noun) A steep slope or long cliff that results from erosion or faulting and separates two relatively level areas of differing elevations.
Synonyms:scarp
Usage: The basalt cliffs of the outside were reproduced upon the inside, forming an escarpment about two hundred feet high, with a woody slope beneath it.
Article of the Day

Cellophane

Cellophane is a thin, transparent sheet or tube of regenerated cellulose, which is the chief constituent of the cell walls of plants. It is used in packaging, as a membrane for dialysis, and can be moisture-proofed. Invented in 1908, cellophane is made by dissolving cellulose alkali, aging it, then regenerating it by forcing it through a slit into a dilute acid solution where it precipitates. Cellophane sales have dwindled because of the presence of what pollutant in its production process? More...
This Day in History

Denmark Becomes a Constitutional Monarchy (1849)

After a flowering of literature and philosophy in the early 19th century, plans for a liberal, centralized constitution led Danish King Frederick VII to become involved in a war with Prussia over the status of the duchy of Schleswig-Holstein. Denmark was defeated and a new constitution was adopted, ending the absolute monarchy, securing civil rights for citizens, and establishing a bicameral parliament and wide suffrage. How many times has the constitution been rewritten since 1849? More...
Today's Birthday

Pancho Villa (1878)

Villa was a legendary Mexican guerrilla leader. He fought for land reform and joined with revolutionaries against dictator Porfirio Díaz as well as his successor but was forced to flee after breaking ties with Venustiano Carranza, who had assumed power in 1914. Angered by US support for Carranza, Villa raided a New Mexico town in 1916. A US force was sent to apprehend him, but he managed to evade capture. Three years after he was finally pardoned, he was assassinated. What was his real name? More...
Quotation of the Day
Man is the unnatural animal, the rebel child of nature, and more and more does he turn himself against the harsh and fitful hand that reared him.

H.G. Wells (1866-1946)

Idiom of the Day

above the salt

Of or in a position of high standing, rank, regard, or repute. The term is derived from the social hierarchy of nobility in medieval times, in which salt, a precious commodity then, was set in the middle of the dining table. Those of high noble rank were seated "above the salt," that is, closer to the lord and lady of the house, while those in lower social standing were seated "below" it. More...
Today's Holiday

World Environment Day (2016)

The United Nations General Assembly designated June 5 as World Environment Day in 1972. The date was chosen because it marked the opening day of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, which led to the establishment of the United Nations Environment Programme. The General Assembly urges countries and organizations to mark this day with activities that educate people about threats to the environment and encourage them to strike a balance between development and concern for Earth's future. More...
In the News

Chimps Shed Light on How We Came to Cook

Chimpanzees and humans share some of the basic brain skills needed for cooking, a finding that may explain a turning point in the story of mankind, a study said Wednesday. Experiments at a chimp sanctuary suggest a common ancestor imparted ... More...
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