Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, July 15, 2013)
Word of the Day

charnel

Definition:(adjective) Gruesomely indicative of death or the dead.
Synonyms:ghastly, sepulchral
Usage: The charnel smell coming from the suspect's basement left little doubt that he was the killer we were seeking.
Article of the Day

Hans Island

Hans Island is located between Canada and Greenland in the strait that connects Baffin Bay to the Arctic Ocean. Used by the Inuit as a hunting ground for centuries, it was later found by 19th-century British and American explorers searching for the Northwest Passage and the North Pole. The island was named after Greenlander Hans Hendrik, the guide of American explorer Charles Francis Hall. Though it is just 0.5 sq mi (1.3 sq km) and is barren and uninhabited, it is claimed by what two countries? More...
This Day in History

Fire Ravages Rome's Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls (1823)

In 1823, a worker repairing the roof of Rome's Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls accidentally started a fire that resulted in its almost total destruction. The church, built under Emperor Constantine in the 4th century, had retained its original character for nearly 1,500 years. Reconstruction work began almost immediately with the aim of recreating the original structure. The viceroy of Egypt contributed alabaster pillars to the rebuilding effort, while the Russian emperor sent what? More...
Today's Birthday

Jacques Derrida (1930)

Derrida was an Algerian-born French philosopher whose critique of Western philosophy encompasses literature, linguistics, and psychoanalysis. In his famously dense and complex writings, he attempted to take apart, or "deconstruct," the edifice of Western metaphysics and reveal what he deemed its incompatible foundations. His thought is based on his disapproval of the search for an ultimate metaphysical certainty. Why was Derrida so controversial among many of his fellow philosophers? More...
Quotation of the Day
Shall a man go and hang himself because he belongs to the race of pygmies, and not be the biggest pygmy that he can? Let every one mind his own business, and endeavor to be what he was made.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)

Idiom of the Day

golden duck

In cricket, a batter's score of zero after being dismissed on the very first ball he or she faces. More...
Today's Holiday

Festival of Castor and Pollux (2016)

In Greco-Roman mythology, Castor and Pollux were twin gods who helped shipwrecked sailors and received sacrifices for favorable winds. Worshipped as the Dioscuri (from the Greek Dioskouroi, or "sons of Zeus"), their cult was a popular one in 484 BCE, when, according to legend, the twins fought on the side of the Romans in the Battle of Lake Regillus and brought word of their victory to Rome. A temple was built for them in the Forum, and it was here that the annual festival in their honor was celebrated on July 15. More...
In the News

China Revives World's Longest Undersea Tunnel Project

China has announced plans to revive an undersea tunnel project that will allow vehicular traffic to cross under the Bohai Strait, cutting the travel distance between China's eastern and northeastern regions by 620 miles (998 km). When completed, the tunnel will span 76.4 miles (123 km), more than twice the distance of Japan's Seikan Tunnel, currently the world's longest undersea tunnel. The project was first announced in the 1990s and was set to be completed before 2010 at a cost of $10 billion. However, it never went beyond the planning stage. Its cost has more than quadrupled since. More...
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