Word of the day  


Definition: n. the cause of ruin or trouble; the curse (esp. the bane of one's life).
Synonyms: curse, scourge, nemesis
Etymology: OE bana f. Gmc (more...)

Quote of the day  

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible. This I did.
by T. E. Lawrence

Birthday of the day  

Georg Böhm

Georg Böhm (2 September 1661 – 18 May 1733) was a German Baroque organist and composer. He is notable for his development of the chorale partita and for his influence on the young J. S. Bach.

Joke of the day  

TEACHER: What is the chemical formula for water? SARAH: 'HIJKLMNO'! TEACHER: What are you talking about? SARAH: Yesterday you said its H to O!

Thought of the day  

Happiness depends upon ourselves.

Fact of the day  

47 BC – Pharaoh Cleopatra VII of Egypt declares her son co-ruler as Ptolemy XV Caesarion.

Biography of the day  

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (also Leibnitz or von Leibniz (July 1 (June 21 Old Style) 1646 - November 14, 1716) was a German polymath who wrote mostly in Latin and French. Educated in law and philosophy, and serving as factotum to two major German noble houses (one becoming the British royal family while he served it), Leibniz played a major role in the European politics and diplomacy of his day. He occupies an equally large place in both the history of philosophy and the history of mathematics. He invented calculus independently of Newton, and his notation is the one in general use since. He also invented the binary system, foundation of virtually all modern computer architectures. In philosophy, he is most remembered for optimism, i.e., his conclusion that our universe is, in a restricted sense, the best possible one God could have made. He was, along with Ren? Descartes and Baruch Spinoza, one of the three great 17th century rationalists, but his philosophy also both looks back to the Scholastic tradition and anticipates modern logic and analysis. Leibniz also made major contributions to physics and technology, and anticipated notions that surfaced much later in biology, medicine, geology, probability theory, psychology, and information science. He also wrote on politics, law, ethics, theology, history, and philology, even occasional verse. His contributions to this vast array of subjects are scattered in journals and in tens of thousands of letters and unpublished manuscripts. To date, there is no complete edition of Leibniz's writings, and a complete account of his accomplishments is not yet possible.

Article of the day  

Lionel Palairet

Lionel Palairet (1870–1933) was an English amateur cricketer who played for Somerset and Oxford University. A graceful right-handed batsman, he was selected to play Test cricket for England twice in 1902; an unwillingness to tour during the English winter limited his Test appearances. For Somerset, he frequently opened the batting with Herbie Hewett. In 1892, they shared a partnership of 346 for the first wicket, an opening stand that set a record for the County Championship and remains Somerset's highest first-wicket partnership. In that season, Palairet was named as one of the "Five Batsmen of the Year" by Wisden. Over the following decade, he was one of the leading amateur batsmen in England. He passed 1,000 first-class runs in a season on seven occasions, and struck two double centuries. After 1904, he appeared infrequently for Somerset, though he played a full season in 1907 when he was chosen to captain the county. He retired from first-class cricket in 1909, having scored over 15,000 runs. Contemporaries judged Palairet to have one of the most attractive batting styles of the period, and his obituary in The Times described him as "the most beautiful batsman of all time".

Did you know

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  • that Punch founding editor Mark Lemon had to sit in the gallery when he worshipped at St John the Baptist's Church, Crawley (pictured) because no pews in the nave were large enough to accommodate him?
  • that the modern Croatian intelligence community emerged as an integral force in Croatia's war for independence, spying on rival Yugoslav republics?