What Is May Day?

iStock/anouchka
iStock/anouchka

Ask the average American to describe May Day and they might mention a pole wrapped in ribbons and springtime pagan rituals. It's true that May 1 does have associations with those things in the Northern Hemisphere, but the holiday has held a greater meaning ever since the Second Industrial Revolution at the end of the 19th century. That's when the International Socialist Conference declared May 1 International Workers’ Day, according to MSN.

May Day evolved from a day reserved for spring festivals to a communist day of remembrance when U.S. workers took to the streets in Chicago 130 years ago. That date was May 1, 1886, and factory workers were fed up with working up to 16-hour days under dangerous conditions. They went on strike to demand more reasonable workday hours until protests erupted in violence. On May 3, several workers were injured or killed in a clash with police, and the following night a bomb detonated in a crowd of police officers monitoring an assembly in Haymarket Square. Police responded by opening fire at protestors, killing several and injuring 200.

Today, socialists and supporters of workers' rights commemorate the incident, known as the Haymarket Affair, each year on May 1. Signs of it are easy to miss in the U.S., but in other countries it's a public holiday that takes the place of Labor Day. Activists around the world often plan marches and protests for the first of May.

The date's modern connotations haven't erased its original significance as an ancient spring festival. Since emerging from pagan traditions, May Day has grown into a secular holiday in Europe, with celebrations including cake, music, and, of course, a dance around the Maypole.

[h/t MSN]

This story was updated in 2019.

Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

Sign Up Today: Get exclusive deals, product news, reviews, and more with the Mental Floss Smart Shopping newsletter!

Grab an Exclusive Star Wars Enamel Pin Advent Calendar Before They Sell Out

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

We've already seen unique Advent calendars filled with beauty samples, Harry Potter figurines, and cat food this year, so it's only natural for Star Wars to get in on the action, too. And in addition to a new LEGO Star Wars Advent calendar hitting shelves, Toynk has an exclusive calendar that caters to serious collectors. This one features 24 beautiful enamel pins of characters like Darth Vader, Princess Leia, Chewbacca, Emperor Palpatine, and plenty more that fans can uncover in the lead-up to Christmas. The calendar is currently available for pre-order for $110.

Toynk

Don't expect these to stick around too long, though. Only 1000 of the calendars will be produced, and each will come with a certificate of authenticity. While all the Star Wars favorites are here, some pins are holiday-themed, so don't be surprised to see BB-8 and C-3PO wearing Santa Claus hats to mark the occasion. Each enamel pin measures 1 to 3 inches long and is housed in a holiday-themed calendar box.

The Advent calendar is now available for pre-order and will be released on November 15. If you are interested in pre-ordering, head over to Toynk.

Related: Celebrate Season 2 of The Mandalorian With These 10 Products

Sign Up Today: Get exclusive deals, product news, reviews, and more with the Mental Floss Smart Shopping newsletter!