My Hero Academia: The True Meaning of 'Plus Ultra' Isn't What You Think

My Hero Academia is moving into its final stage in the manga while season six gets to work behind the scenes. Now years from its debut, Izuku's story has become one of the biggest in Japan, and All Might continues to rank at the top of popularity charts with fans. And if you thought his Plus Ultra catchphrase was a simple gimmick, well – you better think again.

The conversation about Plus Ultra has circled the fandom for years, and many don't know its actual origins. All Might uses Plus Ultra as a personal mantra and a way to encourage others. However, the phrase isn't just a string of random English words. Plus Ultra actually dates back to the early 1500s and has its roots in Latin.

If you didn't know, Plus Ultra is a common way to say non plus ultra in Latin which means nothing further beyond. The phrase goes way back to Greek mythology as the original Latin was said to have been etched in the Pillars of Hercules. Over the years, non plus ultra became a phrase imbued with excellency, and leaders in the Roman Empire and Spain took it as their creed.

Over the centuries, Plus Ultra and its Latin roots have been used in wars and state celebrations around the world. To this day, you can find Plus Ultra on the flag of Spain, and it remains an important historical motto. Franchises like Percy Jackson and Apex Legends have helped spread the phrase's history in the past, and My Hero Academia has done similarly whether or not you knew it.

All Might's use of Plus Ultra may have seemed random at first, but it is anything but. The motto encourages risk-takers to go even further beyond their limits, and that is something All Might embodies. And now, Izuku is learning to embody the same virtue with his classmates as My Hero Academia continues. 

Did you know the history behind Plus Ultra? Do you see catchphrases in a new way now? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB.