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Index finger

Index finger
Human hand with index finger extended
Artery radial artery of index finger
Dorlands/Elsevier i_06/12448665

The second digit of a human hand is also referred to as the index finger, pointer finger, forefinger, digitus secundus, or digitus II.

It is located between the first and third digits - that is, between the thumb and the middle finger. It is usually the most dextrous and sensitive finger of the hand, though not the longest. It may be used to point to things, for hunt and peck typing, to press an elevator button, or to tap on a window. A lone index finger often is used to represent the number 1, or when held up or moved side to side (finger-wagging), it can be an admonitory gesture. With the hand held palm out, it represents the letter d in the American Sign Language alphabet. In sports, it can also represent victory, as some championship-winning teams raise their index finger while posing for a championship team photo.

Studies have also found that a smaller index finger compared with the ring finger indicates a better athlete.[1]



As mentioned above, the forefinger can be used for pointing. However, this gesture is considered rude in some countries (Ukraine, for instance), and other gestures are used instead.

During the Bosnian war, Serbo-Bosnian troops raised three fingers in a sign of victory, Bosnian Croats raised the two-finger V-sign and Muslims (Bosniaks) raised one (after the strict monotheism of Islam).


There are six index finger symbols in Unicode.

  • Black left pointing index: U+261A
  • Black right pointing index: U+261B
  • White left pointing index: U+261C
  • White up pointing index: U+261D
  • White right pointing index: U+261E
  • White down pointing index: U+261F

See also

Additional images


  1. ^ report

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Index_finger". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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