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23rd of April

The 23rd of April is the 113th day of the year (Gregorian calendar) or 114th in a leap year. 


Annual Commemorative and Observational Days



The 23rd of April is known as ‘International Book and Copyright Day’ which was established by UNESCO (United Nations Education, Science and Cultural Organisation) in 1995 to promote Literature, publishing and copyright.

The 23rd of April is also UN English Language Day established by the UNESCO (United Nations Education, Science and Cultural Organisation) similarly to all UN language days to celebrate the language and cultural diversity of the world. UNESCO chose the 23rd of April to commemorate the anniversary of the death (and possibly the birth – see below) of William Shakespeare.


Multi National

The 23rd of April is known as ‘Saint George’s Day’ and celebrated around the world to commemorate the death of Saint George in 303 AD. Saint George is the Patron Saint of England as well as Bulgaria, Georgia, Palestine, Ethiopia, Serbia, Slovenia, Lithuania, Portugal, Malta and Montenegro but Saint George’s Day is also celebrated by many other nations and organisations.







Historical Events


23rd of April


On the 23rd of April 1984

The Virus which causes the deadly ‘Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome” or Aids was first discovered. Since the discovery of Aids in the United Sates 1981 it had been identified all over the world but the cause of the syndrome had not yet been identified. The identification of the virus meant that the production of blood test could be initiated which would help reduce the spread of the Aids. It was initially known as the HTLV-3 virus but in 1987 it became known as the Human Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV. The virus was known to have been spread through the transfer of human bodily fluids and was initially found in homosexual men and drug users that shared needles but it soon spread to many other demographics. Until the possibility of blood test people were able to get the virus from infected blood during transfusions and this discovery saved millions form a possible pandemic.


On the 23rd of April 1962

The U.S. Ranger 4 spacecraft launched with the mission of collecting scientific data and sending images of the Moon to Earth before crashing on the Luna surface. On board computer failure caused the spacecraft to crash on the moon before data was sent.


On the 23rd of April 1616

One of the greatest and most influential writers of all time William Shakespeare died aged 52. It also very likely that he was born on this day in 1564 but there is no record of his birth. Being born a lowly son of a leather trader, John Shakespeare, he was not important enough for any other records to have been kept. There is however record of his Christening on the 26th of April 1564, which was traditionally performed three days after birth. If this is the case then this day in 2014 marked the 450th anniversary of his birth.


On the 23rd of April 303 AD

Saint George died. Saint George was a soldier in the Roman Empire who was martyred for his refusal to persecute Christians in Palestine, disobeying orders from the Roman Emperor. The act of slaying the dragon and saving the fair maiden was later attributed to St. George in medieval times. This day is celebrated around the globe as Saint George who is the patron of many nations including England, Georgia, Egypt, Bulgaria, Romania, Ethiopia, Greece, India, Iraq, Israel, Lebanon, Lithuania, Palestine, Portugal, Macedonia, Serbia, the Ukraine, Russia and Syria.