In 1845, scientists believed that the only explanation for Mercury’s confusing and erratic orbit of the sun would be the presence of gravitational pull from an unseen nearby planet, which they named “Vulcan.” Eventually Albert Einstein, through his theory of relativity, explained Mercury’s behaviour, thus eliminating the hypothetical planet Vulcan — until it was resurrected by Gene Rodenberry in Star Trek.
Dust mites are microscopic organisms that live in dust. These unwelcome visitors invade your nose and can irritate your mucous membranes, triggering nerve cells that signal the lungs to fill with air. When the air passages close and pressure builds up, your nose tingles and twitches, and you sneeze—forcing mucus (the slimy, moisturizing substance), dust, pollen, and mites out of your nose at speeds of up to 525 feet (160 meters) per second!
Sneezing is one of the body’s reflexes, an automatic way it rids itself of harmful substances like bacteria and germs. It also keeps the tubes that carry the air from your nose to your lungs healthy.
In the early days of theatre, the players were lit by gas lamps hidden across the front of the stage. Early in the twentieth century, it was discovered that if a stick of lime was added to the gas, the light became more intense, and so they began to use the “limelight” to illuminate the spot on stage where the most important part of the play took place. Later called the “spotlight,” the “limelight” was where all actors fought to be.
In baseball, when a pitcher throws a curveball, it breaks to a right-handers left and a left-handers right. Early in the twentieth century, the great Christy Mathewson came up with a pitch that broke in the opposite direction and completely baffled opposing batters, who called it a “screwball.”
It became a word used to describe anything eccentric or totally surprising — including some humans.
Today there are some 4,300 religions in the world. Nearly 75 percent of the world’s population practices one of the five most influential religions of the world: Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism. Christianity, which is based on the teachings of Jesus Christ, who preached in Palestine about 2,000 years ago, is the most widely practiced religion in the world today, with 2.1 billion followers.
The second most practiced religion is Islam, with 1.3 billion followers.
A fruit is the part of the plant that nourishes and protects new seeds as they grow. The plant’s ovaries develop into fruit once the eggs inside have been fertilized by pollen. Some plants produce juicy fruit, such as peaches, pears, apples, lemons, and oranges.
Others produce dry fruit, such as nuts and pea pods. If an animal doesn’t eat the fruit, or a human doesn’t pick it off, it falls to the ground and decays and fertilizes the soil where a new seed will grow.
In sports jargon, the second string is the second-best group of players on a given team. The term has also found its way into business, where it is used in much the same way.
In fact, it comes from medieval archers, Who always carried an extra string in case the one on their bow broke. Therefore the second string had to be as good as the first, as did the third and fourth strings.
A rainbow is an arc that shows all the colors, with their different wavelengths, that make up visible light. Seven colors make up a rainbow, and they always appear in the same order: red, with the longest wavelength, is on the top, followed by orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo (a deep reddish-blue that is often difficult to see), and violet, which has the shortest wavelength. A good way to remember the order of those colors is by taking the first letter of each to spell “ROYGBIV,” pronounced “roy-jee-biv.” A rainbow occurs when sunlight passes through water droplets and is refracted or bent by their rounded shape into separate wavelengths.
Rainbows can sometimes be spotted in the spray of lawn sprinklers, in the mist of waterfalls, and—most spectacularly—in the sky during a rain shower when the Sun is still shining. A rainbow appears in the part of the sky opposite the Sun. Because the Sun must also be low in the sky, near the horizon, late afternoon is the best time to look for a rainbow if the day has been sunny with a few short rain showers or thunderstorms.
Dust is made up of particles of all sorts of things. In places where people live, a great deal of dust comes from flakes of dead skin, which are being shed all the time. Dust mites, tiny microscopic creatures that feed on this dead skin, make up dust, too (including their waste and tiny skeletons). Particles of the environment contribute to dust as well: grit from the sidewalk, salt from the sea, dry earth, pollen from plants, pet dander, molds, and smoke from burning materials. And Earth gets 10 tons of dust from outer space every day, from the meteors that burn up as they enter our atmosphere. Sometimes these ingredients cause allergic reactions, such as sneezing and coughing.
1. Symbols, “@#$%&!”, to represent an obscenity or swearword are called grawlixes.
2. “queue” – The word “queue” is the only word in the English Language that is still pronounced the same way when the last four letters are removed.
3. “Dammit I’m mad” is the same spelt backwards
4. “Set” of all the words in the English Language, the word “set” has the most definitions.
5. “Bookkeeper” & “Bookkeeping” are only words in English language with three consecutive double letters.
6. The least used letter in the alphabet is Q.
7. The most commonly used word in English conversation is ‘I’
8. The dot on top of the letter ‘i’ is called a tittle.
9. There are only 4 words in the English language which end in ‘dous’ (they are: hazardous, horrendous, stupendous and tremendous)
10. The oldest word in the English language is ‘town’.
11. The word ‘Strengths’ is the longest word in the English language with just one vowel.
12. The past tense for the English word ‘dare’ is ‘durst’.
13. The word ‘testify’ derived from a time when men were required to swear on their testicles.
14. The first English dictionary was written in 1755.
15. The word old English word ‘juke’ meaning dancing lends its name to the juke box.
16. The longest one syllable word in the English language is ‘screeched’.
17. All pilots on international flights identify themselves in English regardless of their country of origin.
18. The expression to ‘knuckle down’ originated from playing marbles (players used to put their knuckles to the ground for their best shots)
19. The word ‘almost’ is the longest in the English language with all the letters in alphabetical order.
20. The number 4 is the only number that has the same number of letters in it – FOUR
21. Did you know the word ‘Underground’ is the only word that begins and ends with the letters ‘und’.
22. The word ‘Uncopyrightable’ is the is the only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating any letter.
23. The word ‘Typewriter’ is the longest word that can be typed using only the top row of a keyboard.
24. Did you know the sentence “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog” uses every letter in the English alphabet.
25. The sentence “Pack my box with five dozen liquor jugs” uses every letter of the alphabet and uses the least letters to do so!
26. The word ‘Rhythm’ is the longest word without a vowel.
27. “Dreamt” is the only word that ends in mt.
28. Did you know there are only 3 sets of letters on a keyboard which are in alphabetical order – ‘F G H’, ‘J K L’, ‘O P’
29. Did you know “Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis” is the Longest English word in the English dictionary it contains 45 letters.
30. No words in the English language rhyme with “month”, “orange”, “silver” or “purple”.
31. “Hungry” and “Angry” are the only words in the English language that end in “-gry.
32. The only three words in the English language to have 2 consecutive u’s is vacuum, residuum, and continuum.
33. In the English language there are only three words that have a letter that repeats six times. Degenerescence (six e’s), Indivisibility (six i’s), and nonannouncement (six n’s).
34. The word “alphabet” is derived from the first two letters in the Greek alphabet: “alpha” and “beta”.
35. Goddessship is the only word in the English language with a triple letter.
36. There is a seven letter word in the English language that contains ten words without rearranging any of its letters, “therein”: the, there, he, in, rein, her, here, here, ere, therein, herein.
37. ‘Stewardesses’ is the longest word that is typed with only the left hand.
38. The first letters of the months July through to November spell JASON (July August September October November).