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WhoDat!656 05-28-2013 07:03 PM

The History of the Middle Finger
 
Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured English soldiers. Without the middle finger it would be impossible to draw the renowned English longbow and therefore they would be incapable of fighting in the future. This famous English longbow was made of the native English Yew tree, and the act of drawing the longbow was known as 'plucking the yew' (or 'pluck yew').

Much to the bewilderment of the French, the English won a major upset and they began mocking the French by waving their middle fingers at the defeated French, saying, See, we can still pluck yew! Since 'pluck yew' is rather difficult to say, the difficult consonant cluster at the beginning has gradually changed to a labiodentals fricative F', and thus the words often used in conjunction with the one-finger-salute! It is also because of the pheasant feathers on the arrows used with the longbow that the symbolic gesture is known as 'giving the bird.'

Crusader 05-29-2013 01:48 AM

Re: The History of the Middle Finger
 
Thats a great story regardless if its true or not.

SloMotion 05-29-2013 05:48 AM

Re: The History of the Middle Finger
 
I prefer a good bras d'honneur myself ... it has a more universal application, though not always recognized by younger, more vulgar generations who frequently just "flip ya' the bird". :neutral:


SmashMouth 05-29-2013 11:49 AM

Re: The History of the Middle Finger
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SloMotion (Post 505221)
I prefer a good bras d'honneur myself ... it has a more universal application, though not always recognized by younger, more vulgar generations who frequently just "flip ya' the bird". :neutral:


The French recognize it, FWIW.

QBREES9 05-30-2013 07:44 PM

Re: The History of the Middle Finger
 
I thought some italian came up with. LOL


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