Words! Words! Words!

TOT (Take Our Test)

Posted by Phil Jamieson   Jun 5, 2020 10:24:10 AM

FBI. CDC. AOL. DOJ. Read just about anything today and you’ll find an acronym – or at least an initialism. (An acronym is an abbreviation that’s pronounced as one or more words. An initialism just goes purely by the letters.) Sometimes these abbreviations are well-known. For example, everybody knows what “FBI” stands for, and what the letters “IRS” stand for (do note, though, that when you put ‘the’ and ‘irs’ together, it spells ‘theirs’). But some acronyms and initialisms are taken for granted, while at the same time remain unknown as to what the letters stand for. See how many of these YDK (you do know).

Read More

Because It's There

Posted by Phil Jamieson   May 29, 2020 7:30:00 AM

On this day in 1953, Mt. Everest, the highest point on the surface of the earth, was conquered by Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and Tenzing Norgay, a Sherpa of Nepal. They were the first people to reach the top of the mountain. On this day in 1848, Wisconsin became the 30th state in the United States. On this day in 1917, future U.S. President John F. Kennedy was born in Brookline, Massachusetts. And in 2005, Danica Patrick became the first woman to lead the Indianapolis 500. She did not win, but finished in fourth place. Let’s see what wordy heights you can climb today and at what speed, asking not what you can do for your vocabulary but what your vocabulary can do for you. (We hope that wasn’t too cheesy.)

Read More

Topics: vocabulary test, word quiz, vocabulary quiz

Paint Your Wagon, Rose

Posted by Phil Jamieson   May 22, 2020 9:47:10 AM

Image by <a href="https://pixabay.com/users/symvol-129976/?utm_source=link-attribution&amp;utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_campaign=image&amp;utm_content=244261">Александр Летягин</a> from <a href="https://pixabay.com/?utm_source=link-attribution&amp;utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_campaign=image&amp;utm_content=244261">Pixabay</a>On May 22, 1843, the first major wagon train to the Northwest US departed from Elm Grove, Missouri, on the Oregon Trail. In England, the Manchester Arena was bombed during an Ariana Grande concert. In 1455, in the opening battle of England’s War of the Roses, the Yorkists defeated King Henry VI’s Lancastrian forces at St. Albans, 20 miles northwest of London. On this day in 1859, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of the fictional Sherlock Holmes, was born in Scotland.

Read More

Topics: word quiz, vocabulary quiz

Let's Play

Posted by Phil Jamieson   May 15, 2020 11:28:12 AM

On May 15, 1982, “Ebony and Ivory,” sung by Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder, began its seven-week run at #1 on the pop charts. Without the black keys, the white keys on a piano would pretty much be stuck playing “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” and “Do Re Mi.” Thank goodness for the ebony keys. On this day in 1942, gasoline rationing began in 17 Eastern states as an attempt to help the American war effort. Rationing eventually spread throughout the country. In 1941, the Allies successfully tested the jet-propelled Gloster-Whittle E 28/39 aircraft. It was the first Allied aircraft using jet propulsion.  In 1756, the Seven Years War, a global conflict known in America as the French and Indian War, began when England declared war on France.

Read More

Topics: word quiz, vocabulary quiz

“Murder, She Did”

Posted by Phil Jamieson   May 8, 2020 7:00:00 AM

On May 8, 1945, both Great Britain and the United States celebrated Victory in Europe Day. In 1884, Harry S. Truman was born in Lamar, Missouri. Sometime after becoming a haberdasher, he became president of the United States. In 1963, with the release of Dr. No, moviegoers got their first look at the super-spy James Bond, played by Sean Connery. (All other actors fall short of the role. Everyone knows that.) And in 1988, in Seattle, Washington, Stella Nickell was convicted on two counts of murder after she put cyanide in Excedrin capsules in an effort to kill her husband. She killed him and a complete stranger. (This was roughly 12 years after the first “Tylenol murders” in Chicago.) Let’s see if you can spy a victory today in our quiz and thereby rise to heights unheard of. We’ll leave it at that.

Read More

Topics: word quiz, vocabulary quiz

Reaching New Heights

Posted by Phil Jamieson   May 1, 2020 12:09:09 PM

On May 1, 1931, President Herbert Hoover officially dedicated New York City’s Empire State Building, pressing a button from the White House that turned on the building’s lights. Hoover’s gesture, of course, was symbolic; while the president remained in Washington, D.C., someone else flicked the switches in New York. On this day in 1960, an American U-2 spy plane was shot down while conducting espionage over the Soviet Union. The incident derailed an important summit meeting between President Dwight D. Eisenhower and Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev that was scheduled for later that month. Let’s see how high and how fast you can go with today’s word quiz. Be sure not to bail out before you finish!

Read More

Topics: vocabulary test, vocabulary, word quiz

A Founding, a Downing, and a Stolen Crowning

Posted by Phil Jamieson   Apr 21, 2020 10:39:39 AM

 

According to tradition, on April 21, 753 B.C., Romulus and his twin brother, Remus, founded Rome on the site where they were suckled by a she-wolf as orphaned infants. Would you believe there is a coin in the Louvre dated April 21, 753 B.C., commemorating the founding? In 1918, in the skies above France, Baron Manfred von Richthofen, the notorious German flying ace known as the “Red Baron,” was killed by Allied fire (and not by Snoopy). In 1836, at the Battle of San Jacinto, the Texas militia under the leadership of Sam Houston routed Mexican forces led by General Santa Anna. And in 1980, Rosie Ruiz faked her win in the Boston Marathon. She actually jumped into the race about a mile before the finish line. Poor Rosie was crowned the winner, only to be shamed and disqualified a week later. See if you can get ALL the words in today’s quiz. Don’t start at #9 and think you can win.

Read More

Topics: vocabulary test, vocabulary, vocabulary quiz

The Famous Date of April 15

Posted by Phil Jamieson   Apr 15, 2020 2:06:49 PM

The date April 15 is loaded with good and bad. The most recent good is that this year, it’s NOT Tax Day in the US, what with the COVID situation and all! And on this day in 1947, the great Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in major league baseball. But also on this day, the Titanic sank in 1912, the so-called Boston Bombers killed three spectators at the Boston Marathon and injured many more in 2013, and President Abraham Lincoln died after being shot the night before by John Wilkes Booth in 1865. See if you can apply your vocabulary skills for better or worse today in our quiz.

Read More

Topics: vocabulary test, vocabulary, vocabulary quiz

Observation, Opportunity, Decision, and Disaster, All in One

Posted by Phil Jamieson   Nov 12, 2019 8:54:18 AM

On this day in 1799, Andrew Ellicott, an early American astronomer, witnessed the Leonids meteor shower from a ship off the Florida Keys. Ellicott’s journal entry is the first known record of a meteor shower in North America. In 1954, Ellis Island, the gateway to America, shut its doors after processing more than 12 million immigrants since opening in 1892. On this day in 1979, President Jimmy Carter responded to a potential threat to national security by stopping the importation of petroleum from Iran. And on this day in 2001, an American Airlines flight out of John F. Kennedy (JFK) Airport in New York City crashed into a Queens neighborhood after takeoff, killing 265 people.

See if your vocabulary skills light up the sky with your brilliance or cover you in a coat of slippery, good ol’ American oil.

Read More

Topics: vocabulary, vocabulary quiz

Fire Up Your Vocabulary!

Posted by Phil Jamieson   Oct 8, 2019 7:30:00 AM

On this day in 1871, flames sparked in the Chicago barn of Patrick and Catherine O’Leary, igniting a two-day blaze that killed between 200 and 300 people, destroyed 17,450 buildings, left 100,000 homeless and caused an estimated $200 million (in 1871 dollars; $3 billion in 2007 dollars) in damages. Legend has it that a cow kicked over a lantern in the O’Leary barn and started the fire, but other theories hold that humans or even a comet may have been responsible for the event that left four square miles of the Windy City, including its business district, in ruins. Dry weather and an abundance of wooden buildings, streets and sidewalks made Chicago vulnerable to fire. The city averaged two fires per day in 1870; there were 20 fires throughout Chicago the week before the Great Fire of 1871.

See if your word skills heat up with today’s quiz.

Read More

Topics: word test, vocabulary test, vocabulary quiz

Subscribe to Email Updates

Sign up for our emails!

Sign Up

Search Our Blog

Recent Posts