" The inward pleasure of imparting pleasure—that is the choicest of all. "
Nathaniel Hawthorne

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History

The Old Man of the Mountain Collapses

The Old Man of the Mountain was an iconic rock formation in the Franconia Notch mountain pass of New Hampshire. Protruding from the side of a cliff, about 1,200 feet (366 m) above a lake, it looked like a craggy, 40-ft (12-m) human face. Years of freezing weather and the feature's already precarious position caused the beloved local symbol and tourist destination to collapse in 2003. American statesman Daniel Webster once said that the Old Man was God's way of saying what?

Feature

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Honorificabilitudinitatibus

The longest word in the English language featuring alternating consonants and vowels, honorificabilitudinitatibus appears only once in Shakespeare's works—in Love's Labour's Lost (1598). Its use has been cited by Baconists as evidence that Francis Bacon was the real author of Shakespeare's plays. They see in it an anagram for hi ludi, F. Baconis nati, tuiti orbi, meaning "these plays, F. Bacon's offspring, are preserved for the world." What does the original word mean?

Born on a day like today

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William Motter Inge

Inge worked as a teacher and newspaper critic before winning recognition as a dramatist. His plays sympathetically portray the aspirations and frustrations of Midwestern small-town life. He first earned notice in 1950 with Come Back, Little Sheba, and he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1953 for Picnic. Several of his works were made into films. By the 1960s, his reputation as a dramatist declined, and he turned to writing novels. Plagued by alcoholism and illness, he died in what way?

Last updated on Thursday, 3rd May 2012

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