Here’s when Mercury is in retrograde in 2023

It’s nearly that time of year again, you know that period when you feel just a bit off? Of course, we’re talking about the time when Mercury is in retrograde.

The much-memed phenomenon is an astrology expression that refers to a whole bunch of chaos occurring during certain periods of the year. 

In 2022, Mercury went into retrograde four times (!) but luckily we get a tiny break from the madness this year as it’s only set to occur three times in 2023 – phew.

But what does it mean and when will the 2023 dates occur? Read on to find out.

What does Mercury in retrograde mean?

Besides being a meme-worthy expression, when someone says Mercury is in retrograde, they are referring to the name for an astrology transit that sees a period of time where Mercury moves slower than the Earth around the sun.

The planet closest to the sun normally moves faster than ours – it takes Mercury 88 days to make its way around the sun compared to the Earth’s 365 days – so when it goes slower it creates a sort of optical illusion that it’s moving backwards. 

In astrology, Mercury is said to rule communication, news, travel, technology, gossip and information which means, when it is in retrograde, we can expect a whole bunch of mishaps to occur, such as missed connections and miscommunications.

When is Mercury in retrograde in 2023?

Mercury is in retrograde three times in 2023:

21 April to 14 May: The first retrograde of the year will occur under the Taurus sign, but we may start to feel the effects of the pre-retrograde shadow that occurs before the transit happens from as early as 7 April. The post-retrograde shadow will last until 31 May.

23 August to 15 September: Virgos, don’t despair that the second Mercury retrograde is happening under your sign – just do what you do best and plan for the cheerful mishaps instead. The pre-retrograde shadow will begin on 3 August and the post-retrograde shadow will linger until 30 September.

13 December to 1 January, 2024: The third and final Mercury retrograde of the year will take us all the way to the new year as it moves from Sagittarius through to Capricorn. Pre-retrograde shadow will begin from 25 November and the post-retrograde shadow will last well into the new year as it’s set to end on 20 January, 2024. 

What can you expect when Mercury is in retrograde in Taurus?

With the first Mercury retrograde of 2023 falling under the Taurus zodiac sign, it will target all of the areas of life ruled by the sign. 

According to, these are: values, finances, possessions and basic needs. This means you may experience financial setbacks, feel less secure physically and emotionally, and you may struggle to keep track of your things.

While each retrograde affects all star signs, the sign that each retrograde falls under the most feels the deepest effects. 

This year, earth signs – Capricorn, Taurus, and Virgo – will be the most affected by Mercury being in retrograde. 

Mark your calendars now so you don’t get any unwelcome surprises down the road. Godspeed.