Thursday, November 12, 2015

Lost in Translation: April

April! It’s a month, right? So why is it April? And why is April a name? All this, and more, tonight, on Still Writing! Or right now. You know. Whenever is convenient for you.

April first started being called April in the early fourteenth century, where it was aueril (although I think that u was pronounced like a v because letters are dumb). It comes from the Old French avril and classical Latin Aprilis, both of which are obviously just April. There are a few theories as to where the Romans (who made the calendar) came up with April. Some think that they took it from the Etruscan Apru, which in turn was taken from the Greek Aphrodite. But it also may be from the Latin aperire, to open, like the buds of flowers. Maybe.

Now, while April wasn’t the first name that English called that particular month. Before the 1300s, it was Eastermonað, which looks like “Easter Month” for a reason, namely that’s what it literally translates to. Easter actually comes from the proto Germanic austron, which meant dawn and was a goddess of fertility and spring. Which would at least fit with the buds of flowers thing from April.

So, because April is the first real month of spring, it has a spring related origin. I guess this one wasn’t much of a mystery. As for the name, it actually started being given to babies in the 1940s and it is just from the month. Seriously, people started naming their children after a month of the year. Obviously we need to start naming kids after other months. Why not February? Sure, it’ll ruin the lives of the first people it’s given to. But then a celebrity will give it to their kid and everyone’ll start using it.



  1. I know someone named February.
    Here in the South, people give their kids first names that are last names, like Hunter, Parker, and Taylor. Just seems weird to me.

  2. There's also people named June and May.

  3. The rhyme "April showers bring May flowers" just got really creepy.
    The French aren't real big on naming their kids after months of the year, but they do like to use American names and to me, it just sounds terrible. Like Kevin or Dylan, but said in a French accent.... /:

  4. The Old French Avril is still as it's used here. I know an April.

  5. People will name their kids anything. I used to keep a list. I totally wouldn't put it past someone to name their kid November.


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