World Poetry Day

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World Poetry Day
Also calledWPD
Observed byUN Members
ObservancesPromote poetry
Date21 March
Next time21 March 2021 (2021-03-21)

World Poetry Day is celebrated on 21 March, and was declared by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) in 1999, "with the aim of supporting linguistic diversity through poetic expression and increasing the opportunity for endangered languages to be heard".[1] Its purpose is to promote the reading, writing, publishing and teaching of poetry throughout the world and, as the original UNESCO declaration says, to "give fresh recognition and impetus to national, regional and international poetry movements".

It was generally celebrated in October, but in the latter part of the 20th century the world community celebrated it on the 15th, the birthday of Virgil, the Roman epic poet and poet laureate under Augustus. The tradition to keep an October date for national or international poetry day celebrations still holds in many countries.[2] The United Kingdom generally uses the first Thursday in October,[3] but elsewhere a different October, or even sometimes a November date, is celebrated.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "World Poetry Day, 21 March". Retrieved 2020-03-21.
  2. ^ 41 countries observed World Poetry Day on 15 October 1951. Ref. cited: The International Who's Who in Poetry 1978-79. Ernest Kay, Ed. International Biographical Council, Cambridge, England.
  3. ^ National Poetry Day, United Kingdom

External links[edit]