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Old 24 April 2008, 10:39 AM
Richard W's Avatar
Richard W Richard W is offline
Join Date: 19 February 2000
Location: High Wycombe, UK
Posts: 26,437

Originally Posted by ganzfeld View Post
It probably arose when someone heard the story of Agincourt and thought, "That must be how..." Or maybe they just thought it would make a good tale. Some books even take this story back to the Norman invasion so I wonder if even the part about threatening to cut fingers is not true.
The main problem with the idea is that if the two-finger salute gesture did date back as far as Agincourt, then surely it would be known in the USA too? Being known in the UK and Australia / NZ but not North America (do Canadians use it?) suggests - to me at least - that it didn't originate much before the 19th century and might even be a wartime thing (First world war?). There are pictures of Churchill giving the "V for Victory" sign the wrong way round, after all.

By the way, everybody seems to think it means "up yours", as in the one finger gesture - I always thought it meant fairly specifically "f*ck off". Is that just me?
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