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Word of the Day



Definition: (noun) The final outcome.
Synonyms:conclusion, result
Usage:The upshot of the disagreement was that they broke up the partnership. Discuss. Play

Daily Grammar Lesson


Using Multiple Sets of Quotation Marks

If a sentence already uses quotation marks, then we have to differentiate between the quoted speech and the rest of the sentence. If we are using double quotation marks, then we have to put the quoted speech in single quotation marks; if it is in single quotation marks, then the quoted text is put into double quotation marks. What happens to the rest of the punctuation in the sentence? More... Discuss

Article of the Day


The Clouded Leopard

The clouded leopard prowls the Himalayan foothills. It is only distantly related to its namesake but does share the leopard's dark spots. As the smallest of the big cats, the clouded leopard is considered an evolutionary link between big cats and small cats. It is known for its excellent climbing ability—the clouded leopard can climb down trees headfirst—and frightening canine teeth—the largest of any cat in proportion to body size. What nickname has it been given due to this latter feature? More... Discuss

This Day in History


The Twenty-One Demands (1915)

Japan gained a large sphere of interest in northern China through its victories in the First Sino-Japanese War and the Russo-Japanese War, thus joining the ranks of the European imperialist powers scrambling to establish control over China. Japan used its 1914 declaration of war against Germany as grounds for invading German holdings in China. Then, ignoring the Chinese request to withdraw, Japan secretly presented the Chinese president with an ultimatum. What were some of the demands? More... Discuss

Today's Birthday


Peter Mark Roget (1779)

If you have ever used a thesaurus, you have Roget to thank. He was an English physician who created not only the Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases—a comprehensive classification of synonyms that he published in 1852 during his retirement—but also a slide rule for calculating the roots and powers of numbers. Roget was an obsessive list-maker, and it has been speculated that he worked on the thesaurus to combat depressive tendencies. What institution did Roget help to establish? More... Discuss

Quotation of the Day

"EMERGENCY FUEL SHUT-OFF" safety STICKER sign OSHA business gas?
40 Antique Stained Glass Panels From A Wood Sash Frame Salvage WThe desire to know whether or not a woman is cursed with curiosity is one of the most active and insatiable passions of the masculine soul.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914) Discuss


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The Free Dictionary Blog

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Grammar Quiz

Choose the correct demonstrative adjective to complete the sentence:
“Stay away from ____ black dog next door.”

Spelling Bee

Difficulty level:
n. Any of a group of five chemically related nonmetallic elements including fluorine, chlorine, bromine, iodine, and astatine
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Match Up

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Today's Holiday


St. Sebastian's Day Festival (Zinacantán)

In Zinacantán, Chiapas State, Mexico, there is a celebration for several days in honor of St. Sebastian that marks the transfer of authority from the Big Alcalde (or chief magistrate) to his successor. There is an elaborate ritual during which he hands over an image of San Sebastian and other symbols of his authority. The festival also features a jousting pantomime, dancing to the rhythm of a special drum, two feasts, and a mock healing ceremony. The connection between the Día de San Sebastián festivities and the martyrdom of St. Sebastian, however, remains obscure. More... Discuss


Idiom of the Day

on the hush-hush

In a state of secrecy or minimal public knowledge; being known only by a select few people. More... Discuss