What did Shakespeare say about April?

Answered by Stephen Mosley

In his works, Shakespeare often mentioned the month of April and portrayed it in a positive light. One notable mention of April is found in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” where Theseus says, “Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour draws on apace; four happy days bring in another moon: but, O, methinks, how slow this old moon wanes! She lingers my desires, like to a stepdame or a dowager long withering out a young man’s revenue” (Act 1, Scene 1, lines 1-5). This passage suggests that April is a month associated with joyous occasions such as weddings.

Furthermore, in the same play, Theseus remarks, “Now, fair Hippolyta, our hour draws on apace. Four happy days bring in another moon” (Act 1, Scene 1, lines 7-8). These lines indicate that April is a time of anticipation and excitement, as the characters eagerly await their upcoming wedding. Shakespeare’s choice to set the play during this month may symbolize new beginnings and the rejuvenation of love.

In another play, “The Two Gentlemen of Verona,” Shakespeare writes, “And why not death rather than living torment? To die is to be banish’d from myself; And Silvia is myself: banish’d from her Is self from self, a deadly banishment!” (Act 3, Scene 1, lines 190-193). Although this passage does not directly mention April, it is worth noting that it occurs in Act 3, which is typically associated with the third month of the year. This may suggest that April, like the young spring, represents a time of intense emotions and personal growth.

Additionally, in Sonnet 98, Shakespeare writes, “From you have I been absent in the spring, When proud-pied April, dressed in all his trim, Hath put a spirit of youth in every thing, That heavy Saturn laughed and leaped with him” (lines 1-4). Here, Shakespeare personifies April as a vibrant and rejuvenating season. He describes it as a time when nature comes alive, and the spirit of youth permeates everything. This portrayal emphasizes the positive qualities of April and the joy it brings.

As for personal experiences, I can relate to Shakespeare’s depiction of April as a month of renewal and excitement. I have always found April to be a time when nature starts to awaken from its winter slumber. The blooming flowers, the chirping birds, and the longer days all contribute to a sense of rejuvenation and optimism. It is a month that symbolizes the beginning of new adventures and the opportunity for growth.

Shakespeare’s portrayal of April in his works suggests that he held a favorable view of this month. He associated it with joyous occasions, anticipation, personal growth, and the rejuvenation of love. April, in Shakespeare’s eyes, was a time when nature flourished, and the spirit of youth was present in every aspect of life.