The Brief:

The phrase, which references a popular Star Wars quote, is used in memes and social media posts every May 4th. 

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DEEP DIVE

May is THE meme month. Just days after It’s Gonna be May memes kicked off the month and we’re already on to the next. May the 4th be with you (and also with you) this Wednesday as May 4th marks Star Wars Day.

What started as a silly pun shared by the Star Wars fandom has become a full-fledged holiday celebrated by many around the globe.

What is Star Wars Day?

For decades, Star Wars stans have celebrated George Lucas’ franchise on May 4th, proclaiming the day to be a “special once-a-year celebration of the galaxy far, far away.

Popular Star Wars Day memes often include the caption or hashtag, “May the Fourth be with You.” The date was chosen for the pun on the catchphrase “May the Force be with you”.

While the phrase “May the Force be with you” originated in Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope in 1977, the first reference of “May the 4th be with You” dates back to May 4, 1979, the day Margaret Thatcher took office as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

Apparently, Thatcher’s political party placed a congratulatory advertisement in The London Evening News, saying “May the Fourth Be with You, Maggie. Congratulations.”

Revenge of the Fifth/Sixth

Though less popular than May the 4th, some Star Wars fans recognize the following day, May 5th, as “Revenge of the Fifth“, a play on Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith.

Others celebrate this one day later, on May 6th, saying that “Revenge of the Sixth” is a better play on “Sith.”

How will Star Wars fans be celebrating on May 4th?

While fans share their fave Star Wars memories, cosplay, and quotes across social media every May 4th, some go the extra mile and make the trek to Toronto for the annual celebration.

In 2011, the first Star Wars Day event took place in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and the annual gathering has since continued. Those interested can check out @StarWarsDayTO on Twitter for more deets.

For anyone unable to make the trek to Toronto, there are plenty of other opportunities to celebrate the Sith.

Many fans don their favorite Star Wars costumes…

While others will certainly be taking advantage of the many food, drink, and shopping deals.

When in doubt, eat…

Drink…

And get tattooed?

Lastly, for those with zero interest in Star Wars, there’s always Jane Austen…