Tuesday, February 07, 2006

maverick saint with stick, bad attitude

Came across this bad-ass saint in a dark church in germany. for those not familiar with the two fingered salute, the relevant extract from wikipedia:

The UK insulting version (with the palm inwards) performs a similar social function to "the finger". The "two fingered salute", as it is also known, is traditionally performed by flicking the V upwards from wrist or elbow. "The finger" is traceable to Roman times, but is almost certainly unrelated in origin, as the insulting V sign is largely restricted to the UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, and Spain, where it is popular among taxi drivers in Madrid...

An often-repeated legend has it that the insulting version originates from around the time of the Hundred Years' War. According to the legend, the sign comes from a French threat to amputate the distinctive calloused bow fingers of captured Welsh archers, as without those fingers they would be unable to draw their bows. Likewise the Welsh might have used it themselves as a gesture of provocation (i.e. "Watch out - I've still got my fingers!"). There is little actual evidence to support these historical explanations, but the legend is certainly part of the cultural context of the sign.