Gerardus Mercator (1512)

Mercator was a Flemish geographer, mathematician, and cartographer who perfected the first map using the Mercator projection, the translation of the spherical earth to a two-dimensional flat plane. In it, parallels and meridians are rendered as straight lines spaced to produce an accurate ratio of latitude to longitude at any point. It permits mariners to […]

hackneyed

Definition: (adjective) Repeated too often; overfamiliar through overuse. Synonyms: banal, old-hat, stock, threadbare, timeworn, trite, well-worn, tired, shopworn, commonplace. Usage: For God’s sake do not thrust upon me your hackneyed remarks, repeated to nausea, that “I was only a dreamer,” while they even then had an understanding of life. Discuss …read more

inglenook

Definition: (noun) A nook or corner beside an open fireplace. Synonyms: chimney corner. Usage: Yet no one had retired, except the children and “old Feyther Taft,” who being too deaf to catch many words, had some time ago gone back to his inglenook. …read more

the Pine Burr Quilt

In observation of Black History Month, we (STATE SYMBOLS USA) are featuring the Pine Burr Quilt, the official state quilt of Alabama. The Alabama legislature designated the quilt an official symbol in honor of the Black women of the Freedom Quilting Bee. In 1966, Black workers were losing their jobs in retaliation for registering to vote, […]

“What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?”

“What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?” R.E.M.’s song title refers to an incident in New York City in 1986, when two then-unknown assailants attacked journalist Dan Rather, while repeating “Kenneth, what is the frequency?” Read More about the incident here: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=What%27s+the+frequency%2C+Kenneth%3F   From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia “What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?” is a song by the American […]

shivaree

Definition: (noun) A noisy mock serenade for newlyweds. Synonyms: belling, callithump. Usage: The clamorous shivaree stood in stark contrast to the refined, reserved marital ceremony it followed. Discuss …read more

granger

Definition: (noun) A person who operates a farm. Synonyms: sodbuster, farmer, husbandman. Usage: Their lands had been bought long ago, and the grangers moved to the city to find work as manual laborers. Discuss …read more

annulus

Definition: (noun) A toroidal shape. Synonyms: doughnut, anchor ring, halo, ring. Usage: He was reclining on the red couch, blowing annuli of smoke that would slowly ascend and disappear into wisps. …read more

Does It Pass the ‘Smell Test?’

smell test ‎(plural smell tests) (idiomatic) An informal method for determining whether something is authentic, credible, or ethical, by using one’s common sense or sense of propriety. An inspection of an object using the sense of smell, as for freshness of food. (physiology) An assessment of a subject’s ability to detect and distinguish odors. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/smell_test

Subvertising

Subvertising is the practice of making spoofs or parodies of corporate and political advertisements. Taking its name from a combination of the words “subvert” and “advertising,” the act is often intended to sabotage its targets by presenting easily recognizable images that are shocking upon second glance. Still, some critics say subverts, which are often modified […]

annihilative

Definition: (adjective) Wreaking or capable of wreaking complete destruction. Synonyms: withering, devastating. Usage: The possession of annihilative power has not slowed down the drive toward even more fiendish modes of inflicting wholesale death. Discuss …read more

In a Flash

As storm clouds develop, the temperature at the top of the clouds becomes much cooler than that at the bottom. For reasons that scientists still do not understand, this temperature difference results in the accumulation of negatively charged particles near the base and positively charged particles near the top of the storm cloud. This buildup […]

“This Is the Way We Roll”

“This Is the Way We Roll” This Is the Way We Roll is a single released byHammer from the album Too Legit to Quit.[1] The song was featured in the film, The Addams Family, and was performed by Hammer onSaturday Night Live. A music video was produced for the track as well. Variations of this phrase have become a recent Catch […]

XYY Syndrome

XYY syndrome is a chromosomal anomaly characterized by the presence of one X-chromosome and two Y-chromosomes. Some medical geneticists question whether the term “syndrome” is appropriate for this sex-linked trisomy, because afflicted males are physically normal—though they tend to be above average in height—and the vast majority of those affected do not know that they […]

Intellectual Property

Intellectual property is an umbrella term for the various legal entitlements associated with certain names, literary works, recorded media, and inventions. The holders of such entitlements may exercise various exclusive rights in relation to the use of their intellectual property. The concept is controversial because it implies that intellectual works—so-called products of the mind—are analogous […]

promulgate

promulgate – (verb) – To make known (a decree, for example) by public declaration; announce officially. Synonyms: exclaim, proclaim. Usage: Where is the staircase from which Charles VI promulgated his edict of pardon? …read more

Mimesis

Mimesis is the imitation or representation of nature and human behavior in art. According to Plato, all artistic works are mere imitations of that which exists. Because the substantive reality perceived by man is only a reflection of a higher truth, art is thrice removed from the truth. Aristotle believed that this necessary distance between […]

Senescence

Biologically speaking, senescence is the process of deterioration that follows the development of an organism. In 1965, Leonard Hayflick discovered that normal diploid cells divide in cell culture about 50 times before entering a senescence phase during which they can replicate no more. Each cell division shortens the telomere of the cell’s DNA, thus ticking […]

shenanigan

Definition: (noun) Reckless or malicious behavior that causes discomfort or annoyance in others. Synonyms: mischief, devilment, roguery, devilry, mischievousness, rascality. Usage: Mr. Jones had had enough of Billy’s shenanigans and sent him to the principal’s office in the hopes that she would be able to straighten the unruly student out. Discuss …read more

Bezoar – It’s a Medical Term

A bezoar is a mass found trapped in the gastrointestinal system, though it can occur in other locations. A pseudobezoar is an indigestible object introduced intentionally into the digestive system. There are several varieties of bezoar, some of which have inorganic constituents and others organic. The term has both a modern (medical, scientific) and a […]

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