Daily Content Archive

(as of Saturday, July 30, 2011)
Word of the Day

ad-lib

Definition:(adjective) Said or done without having been planned or written in advance.
Synonyms:spontaneous, unwritten
Usage: The bride's father made a few ad-lib remarks at the rehearsal dinner, and they turned out to be the most memorable and meaningful words of the night.
Article of the Day

The Book of Enoch

The Book of Enoch is an ancient religious text attributed to Enoch, the Biblical figure said to have been the great-grandfather of Noah. Although it is not considered part of the canon of scripture for Jews or Christians, apart from a few sects, it is quoted in the New Testament, indicating that its authors were familiar with the text. Aramaic fragments of the Book of Enoch were found among the Dead Sea Scrolls in Qumran, but the only known complete version is written in what ancient language? More...
This Day in History

Medicare and Medicaid Are Established (1965)

The Social Security Act of 1935 established national social insurance, welfare, and other assistance programs in the US, but it did not address healthcare. Years later, President Harry Truman drew attention to this issue when he unsuccessfully lobbied for the establishment of a national healthcare program. By the 1960s, the political climate was more open to reform, and the Social Security Act amendments creating Medicare and Medicaid were passed. What is the difference between the two programs? More...
Today's Birthday

Smedley Darlington Butler (1881)

Born to a Quaker family in Pennsylvania, Butler joined the US Marines as a teenager. He was decorated for bravery and leadership and advanced through the ranks, but, after retiring, he became a proponent of isolationism and an outspoken critic of the government. He believed that he and the military had been used to further the business interests of wealthy Americans under the pretense of defending the country. According to legend, whose long-lost amputated arm did Butler once locate? More...
Quotation of the Day
A sudden, bold, and unexpected question, doth many times surprise a man, and lay him open.

Francis Bacon (1561-1626)

Idiom of the Day

be not just another pretty face

To have distinguishing achievements, intelligence, skills, or abilities beyond what was or may have been assumed. More...
Today's Holiday

Boeteprocessie (Procession of the Penitents, Belgium) (2017)

The Procession of the Penitents is a religious procession in Veurne, West Flanders, Belgium. Penitents in coarse robes and hoods walk barefoot through town, many carrying heavy wooden crosses. The procession, to the sound of drumbeats, is interspersed with scenes depicting biblical events. At the end of the procession, bishops parade carrying the Sacred Host; and as the Sacrament passes, spectators quietly kneel. After the procession is over there is a kermess, or fair, in the marketplace. More...
In the News

Plant Evolved Dish-Shaped Leaves to Attract Bats

It is well established that many plants evolved colorful flowers to attract pollinators like bees and butterflies, and now it appears that at least one plant, Marcgravia evenia, evolved specialized acoustic features to attract bat pollinators. Most bats navigate using echolocation, a means of sensing objects in the environment by sending out pulses of sound and listening for the returning echoes reflected off of objects. This vine's dish-shaped leaves are incredibly efficient at bouncing bats' sound pulses back and produce a distinctive echo that help bats find them. More...
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