History of the Middle Finger

 Well, now……here’s something I never knew before, and I feel compelled  to send it on to my more intelligent friends in the hope that they,too,  will feel edified.
 Isn’t history more fun when you know something about it?                                         
                                         _
                                      /’_-/)
                                   ,/_  /
                                  /    /
                             /’_’/’   ‘/’__’/’,’/’
                        / ‘/    /    /    /  / _\
                        (‘(    ‘    ‘     _      \
                         \
                          \                  ‘    /
                            \              _./’
                              \            \
                               \            \
                       Giving the 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 weapon was made of the native English Yew tree, and theact 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  began mocking the French by waving their middle fingers at the defeated  French, saying, "See, we can still pluck yew!"
"PLUCK YEW!"
 Since ‘pluck yew’ is rather difficult to say, the difficult consonant  cluster at the beginning has gradually changed to a labiodental 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."

And yew thought yew knew everything
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