Etymology
Advertisement
April 
fourth month, c. 1300, aueril, from Old French avril (11c.), from Latin (mensis) Aprilis, second month of the ancient Roman calendar, from a stem of uncertain origin and meaning, with month-name suffix -ilis as in Quintilis, Sextilis (the old names of July and August).

Perhaps based on Apru, an Etruscan borrowing of Greek Aphrodite. Or perhaps *ap(e)rilis "the following, the next," from its place as the second month of the old Roman calendar, from Proto-Italic *ap(e)ro-, from PIE *apo- "away, off" (see apo-; compare Sanskrit aparah "second," Gothic afar "after"). Old folk etymology connected it with Latin aperire "to open."

In English in Latin form from mid-12c.; it replaced Old English Eastermonað, which was named for a fertility goddess (see Easter). Re-spelled in Middle English on Latin model (apprile, first attested late 14c.).
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
Earth Day 

as an annual ecological awareness event on April 22, from 1970; the idea for it and the name date from 1969.

Related entries & more 
Ceres 

Roman goddess of agriculture (identified with Greek Demeter), also the name given to the first-found and largest asteroid (discovered 1801 by Piazzi at Palermo), from PIE *ker-es-, from root *ker- (2) "to grow." Her festival, Cerealia, was April 10.

Related entries & more 
Appomattox 
eccentric spelling of plural of Appomattoc, name of a local subgroup of the Powhatan (Algonquian) confederacy in Virginia (first attested as Apamatic, 1607). Site of last battle for Army of Northern Virginia (CSA) in the American Civil War, and of Lee's surrender to Grant in Wilmer McLean house, April 9, 1865.
Related entries & more 
Easter Island 
so called because it was discovered by Dutch navigator Jakob Roggeveen on April 2, 1722, which was Easter Monday. It earlier had been visited by English pirate Edward Davis (1695), but he neglected to name it. The native Polynesian name is Mata-kite-ran "Eyes that Watch the Stars."
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
TWA 
formed May 16, 1928, as Transcontinental Air Transport, merged 1930 with Western Air Express to form Transcontinental and Western Air Inc. (TWA). Name changed to Trans World Airlines 1950, but the moniker remained the same. Its last remnants were bought out by rival American Airlines in April 2001.
Related entries & more 
Fort Sumter 
military installation in South Carolina, U.S., begun in 1827, named for U.S. Revolutionary War officer and Congressman Thomas Sumter (1734-1832), "The Carolina Gamecock." The family name is attested from 1206, from Old French sommetier "driver of a pack horse" (see sumpter). The U.S. Civil War is held to have begun with the firing of rebel batteries on the government-held fort on April 12, 1861.
Related entries & more 
Babbitt (n.)

"conventional, complacent, materialistic American businessman," 1923, from the name of the title character of Sinclair Lewis' novel (1922).

His name was George F. Babbitt. He was forty-six years old now, in April 1920, and he made nothing in particular, neither butter nor shoes nor poetry, but he was nimble in the selling of houses for more money than people could afford to pay. [Sinclair Lewis, "Babbitt," 1922]

Earlier the name was used in metallurgy (1857) in reference to a type of soft alloy (1875).

Related entries & more 
Pluto (n.)

Roman god of the underworld, early 14c., from Latin Pluto, Pluton, from Greek Ploutōn "god of wealth," from ploutos "wealth, riches," probably originally "overflowing," from PIE root *pleu- "to flow." The alternative Greek name or epithet of Hades in his function as the god of wealth (precious metals and gems, coming from beneath the earth, form part of his realm). The planet (since downgraded) was discovered 1930 by U.S. astronomer Clyde W. Tombaugh; Minerva also was suggested as a name for it. The cartoon dog first appeared in Walt Disney's "Moose Hunt," released April 1931.

Related entries & more 
Palestine 

from Latin Palestina (name of a Roman province), from Greek Palaistinē (Herodotus), from Hebrew Pelesheth "Philistia, land of the Philistines" (see Philistine). In Josephus, the country of the Philistines; extended under Roman rule to all Judea and later to Samaria and Galilee.

Revived as an official political territorial name 1920 with the British mandate. Under Turkish rule, Palestine was part of three administrative regions: the Vilayet of Beirut, the Independent Sanjak of Jerusalem, and the Vilayet of Damascus. In 1917 the country was conquered by British forces who held it under occupation until the mandate was established April 25, 1920, by the Supreme Council of the Allied Powers at San Remo. During the occupation Palestine formed "Occupied Enemy Territory Administration (South)," with headquarters at Jerusalem.

Related entries & more