The state of Iowa may have received its name from a Native American word meaning "beautiful land."

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Originally, a gondola race in Venice; now, a rowing or sailing race, or a series of such races.


A lawless military adventurer, especially one in quest of plunder; a freebooter; -- originally applied to buccaneers infesting the Spanish American coasts, but introduced into common English to designate the followers of Lopez in his expedition to Cuba in 1851, and those of Walker in his expedition to Nicaragua, in 1855. A tactic for delaying or obstructing legislation by making long speeches

Julian period

A period of 7,980 years beginning January 1, 4713 b.c. Devised in 1583 by Joseph Scaliger, it provides a chronological basis for the study of ancient history. To find the Julian year, add 4,713 to any year.

St. Luke's Little Summer

A spell of warm weather that occurs about the time of the saint's feast day, October 18, this period is sometimes referred to as Indian summer.


1 fathom=2 yards=6 feet


Hail falls mainly in the summer. It forms in thunderstorm clouds, which can extend high into the atmoshpere where extremely cold temperatures prevail. When a cloud releases rain, the rain can be forced upward, where it freezes into tiny ice pellets. If updrafts keep buffeting the pellets, layer upon layer of frozen water will be added to the pellets until, finally, hailstones are released.

Relative humidity

The amount of moisture in the air compared to the maximum amount of moisture the air could hold at a given temperature; measured as a precentage of saturation.

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