April is the fourth
monthof the year in the Gregorian Calendar, and one of four months with a length of 30 days. April was originally the second month of the Roman calendar, before January and February were added by King Numa Pompiliusabout 700 BC. It became the fourth month of the calendar year (the year when twelve months are displayed in order) during the time of the decemvirsabout 450 BC, when it also was given 29 days. The derivation of the name ( Latin"Aprilis") is uncertain. The traditional etymology from the Latin "aperire", "to open," in allusion to its being the season when trees and flowers begin to "open," is supported by comparison with the modern Greek use of ἁνοιξις (opening) for spring. Since most of the Roman months were named in honor of divinities, and as April was sacred to Venus, the "Festum Veneris et Fortunae Virilis" being held on the first day, it has been suggested that Aprilis was originally her month Aphrilis, from her Greek name Aphrodite("Aphros"), or from the Etruscan name "Apru". Jacob Grimmsuggests the name of a hypothetical god or hero, "Aper" or "Aprus". [Jacob Grim "Geschichte der deutschen Sprache". Cap. "Monate"]
Anglo-Saxonscalled April "Oster-monath" or "Eostur-monath", the period sacred to "Eostre" or "Ostara", the pagan Saxon goddess of spring, from whose name is derived the modern Easter. St George's day is the twenty-third of the month; and St Mark's Eve, with its superstition that the ghosts of those who are doomed to die within the year will be seen to pass into the church, falls on the twenty-fourth. In China the symbolic ploughing of the earth by the emperor and princes of the blood takes place in their third month, which frequently corresponds to our April. The Finnish called this month "Huhtikuu", or 'Burnwood Month', when the wood for beat and burn clearing of farmland was felled.
The "days of April" ("journées d'avril") is a name appropriated in French history to a series of insurrections at Lyons, Paris and elsewhere, against the government of Louis Philippe in 1834, which led to violent repressive measures, and to a famous trial known as the "procès d'avrill".
The birthstone of April is the
diamondor the sapphire, and the birth flower is typically listed as either the Daisyor the Sweet Pea. [Kipfer, Barbara Ann (1997) "The Order of Things." New York: Random House] However, a few questionable online sources also cite the Tulip, as well.
The Waste Land", T. S. Eliotcalled April "the cruellest month".
April starts on the same day of the week as July in all years, and January in leap years.
April holidays and events
National Poetry Month- in United States
Sexual AssaultAwareness Month - in United States
*Jazz Appreciation Month
April Fools' Day- April 1
AutismAwareness Day - April 2
World Health Day- April 7
Arbor Day- in Korea- April 5
* End of Tax Year (UK) -
Buddha's Birthday- Traditional Date - April 8
*Araw ng Kagitingan, also known as "Bataan Day" (
Philippines) - April 9
Tax Day- April 15(in US)
*Khmer New Year in
Cambodia- April 13
Passoverbegins on the fifteenth day of Nisan, which in 2008 begins at sunset on April 19
Patriots' Day- April 21
Earth Day- April 22
Conch RepublicIndependence Celebration ( Key West, Florida) - April 23
St George's DayPatron Saint Celebration ( England, Europe) - April 23
ANZAC Day( Australiaand New Zealand) - April 25
Carnation Revolution( Portugal) - April 25
Arbor Day- last Friday of April in United States
Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work Day, usually fourth Thursday (United States)
*April's birthstone is
*Its birth flower is the
List of historical anniversaries
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