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What does it mean when you stick up your middle finger?

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French warriors would cut off the middle finger of British archers since this was the finger used to pull the string back on the bow. Archers who replaced them would stick their middle fingers up mocking the French showing them they got their finger and they're gonna launch an arrow through your head.

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My history teacher told me this like 2 weeks ago. I think its awesome learning where things originated from :)
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Same.
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Excellent answer! I love word originations as well. My Grandma (!) who is 95 told me the f-word 1st came from England when they arrested prostitutes for "fornication under the crowned king." In America it was also used to book prostitutes & the police shortened their answer on arrest form requiring reason for arrest "for use of carnal knowledge" to the 1st letter of each word.
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I am putting your answer WiseWoman into my file of great stuff from Ask.com...and Sonshine too!
Thanks...
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That is awesome Virginia. Thank you :)
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Thank you too Sonshine!
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Sticking up your middle finger is a rude gesture.

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I know that. I was just wondering what it meant. I would never stick up my middle finger. People at my school do that though.
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Tough to explain politely. 'F##k you' (I'm sure you can fill in the blanks.)
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F*** you

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I thought it was invented in the 60's along with "F-you", but apparently both of them go back to Ireland centuries ago.

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Go to hell

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Great answer wisewoman!

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Why thank you Sonshine.
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It's a nonverbal swear...

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