Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, September 12, 2016)
Word of the Day

lackey

Definition:(noun) A servile follower.
Synonyms:toady, crawler, sycophant
Usage: The archdeacon had in Quasimodo the most submissive slave, the most docile lackey, the most vigilant of dogs.
Article of the Day

Olbers's Paradox

If the universe is assumed to contain an infinite number of uniformly distributed luminous stars, then every point in the sky should be as bright as a star. So why is the sky dark at night? That is the question posed by Olbers's paradox, named for astronomer Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers, who described it in 1823, more than 200 years after Johannes Kepler first posed the question as an argument against the notion of a limitless universe with infinite stars. How has the paradox since been resolved? More...
This Day in History

Elizabeth Barrett Elopes with Robert Browning (1846)

Elizabeth Barrett's Poems, published in 1844, brought her immediate fame and became a favorite of the poet Robert Browning. The two began to correspond, fell in love, and, after a courtship kept secret from her tyrannical father, married and settled in Italy. The once frail and sickly Elizabeth grew stronger and, at age 43, gave birth to a son. Her poetic reputation rests chiefly on the love poems written during their courtship, Sonnets from the Portuguese. Who is "the Portuguese"? More...
Today's Birthday

Alfred A. Knopf (1892)

Knopf was a leading American publisher of the 20th century who founded Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., in 1915. He emphasized translations of great contemporary European literature, at that time neglected by American publishers, and paid special attention to the printing, binding, and design of his books, earning a reputation as a purist in both content and presentation. By the time of his death, authors published by the firm had won 16 Nobel and 27 Pulitzer prizes. What was his colophon? More...
Quotation of the Day
Capital, n.: The seat of misgovernment.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)

Idiom of the Day

hard on the eyes

Unattractive; ugly. More...
Today's Holiday

Festival of St. Nichiren's Pardon (2016)

At the Botamochi Temple in Kamakura, Japan, this festival honors St. Nichiren (1222-1282), considered to be Japan's most fervent Buddhist priest. He was exiled to the island of Sado in the Sea of Japan in 1271. After four years there, he returned and spent the rest of his life on Mount Minobu. The Festival of Nichiren's Pardon is observed by members of the Nichiren sect with massive demonstrations and the loud chanting of prayers attributed to Nichiren, accompanied by the beating of drums. People make offerings of botamochi, rice balls covered with sweet bean paste, in his honor. More...
In the News

World's Wilderness Reduced by a Tenth Since 1990s

A tenth of the world's wilderness has vanished in the past two decades, research shows. New maps show "alarming losses" of pristine landscapes, particularly in South America and Africa, according to World Conservation Society scientists. They argue in ... More...
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