World Book and Copyright Day Date in the current year: April 23, 2016

World Book and Copyright Day World Book and Copyright Day is a United Nations observance annually held on April 23. It is organized by UNESCO in order to promote reading culture, book publishing, and copyright. The first celebration took place on April 23, 1995.

Spanish booksellers are believed to have been the first to make the connections between books and April 23. Since 1923, they have been honoring the prominent Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes on this day, as it is his death anniversary.

UNESCO decided to celebrate World Book and Copyright Day on this date as it is the anniversary of the death of three prominent writers. Miguel de Cervantes, William Shakespeare, and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega all died on April 23, 1616. It is also the birth anniversary of Halldór Laxness and Maurice Druon and the death anniversary of William Wordsworth and P. L. Travers.

Events organized on the occasion of World Book and Copyright Day include but are not limited to book exhibitions and fairs, seminars, conferences. These events focus on paying tribute to books and authors and encouraging people to discover the pleasure of reading.

Unlike most countries, the United Kingdom and Ireland celebrate World Book Day on the first Thursday in March, because April 23 coincides with Saint George's Day and clashes with Easter holidays in schools.

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