Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, August 23, 2013)
Word of the Day

chivvy

Definition:(verb) Annoy continually or chronically.
Synonyms:beset, harass, harry, hassle, molest, plague, provoke
Usage: The senator is very demanding and is reputed to endlessly chivvy her staff to work harder.
Article of the Day

Czech Hedgehogs

Early in World War II, Germany relied heavily on the great striking power of its fast-moving tank formations. To defend against the threat, the Czechs lined their borders with large iron obstacles shaped like toy jacks. Though not immovable, they cause tanks to get stuck after driving over them. While the Nazis went on to annex Czech territory in the Sudetenland, these obstacles, known as "Czech hedgehogs," caught on with other combatants and were later employed in what famous battle? More...
This Day in History

Sacco and Vanzetti Are Executed (1927)

The 1920 armed robbery and murder trial of the young Italian immigrants Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti was one of the most controversial in US history. Though some believed the verdict was just, others argued that the two men were innocent and were only found guilty because they were immigrants and political radicals. Their defenders waged a fierce legal and public relations battle to save the men's lives, but they were executed in 1927. What declaration about the verdict was made in 1977? More...
Today's Birthday

Gene Kelly (1912)

Kelly was an American dancer, choreographer, actor, and movie director. After training at his mother's dance school in Pittsburgh, he moved to New York in 1938 and danced in Broadway musicals. His athletic style later became a hallmark of the movie musical. His most famous performance came in Singin' in the Rain, which he also helped choreograph and direct. His achievements earned him a special Academy Award in 1952. With what animated character did Kelly dance in Anchors Aweigh? More...
Quotation of the Day
Life altogether is but a crumbling ruin when we turn to look behind.

Jerome K. Jerome (1859-1927)

Idiom of the Day

grind (someone's) gears

To greatly or specifically irritate or annoy someone. More...
Today's Holiday

Vulcanalia (2016)

Vulcan was the ancient Roman god of volcanic or destructive fire. The Vulcanalia, or festival in honor of Vulcan, was held on August 23, right at the time of year when forest fires might be expected and when the stored grain was in danger of burning. For this reason, Vulcan's cult was very prominent at Ostia, where Rome's grain was stored. At the Vulcanalia, which was observed in Egypt, in Athens, and in Rome, the priest or flamen Volcanis performed a sacrifice, and the heads of families burned small fish they had caught in the Tiber River. More...
In the News

Zoo Management Caught Lyin' about Lion

A Chinese zoo temporarily shut down after it was discovered that what patrons were gaping at in the lion cage was nothing more than a domestic dog. The Tibetan mastiff has a bushy mane that gives it a lion-like appearance, but it still barks like any other canine. This is what raised the suspicions of one savvy zoo visitor, who then tipped off the media to the apparent fraud. Further investigation revealed that the deception—or inadvertent oversight, as zoo management maintains—was actually much more extensive, with foxes on display in the leopard enclosure and nutrias in the snake den. More...
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