hide. Heavy metal fans are familiar with the so-called "sign of the horns" or "devil horns," made by extending the index finger and pinky. A sign that says everything is good, that everything is okay. The last thing you want to do when traveling to a new country is to offend … The If you want to gesture to someone or call them, don’t point your finger at them. in the U.S. has pretty awful meanings elsewhere. But in many European and South American countries, including Italy, Spain, Greece, Brazil, Argentina, and Colombia, the gesture has a more obscene meaning. Here it’s described as a slang phrase in use by his British counterparts: “Thumbs up, Tommy’s expression which means ‘everything is fine with me.'”. In Iran, Greece, Russia, Sardinia, and parts of West Africa the thumbs up is as rude as the middle finger is in the UK. People will likely be more bemused than hurt if you slip up. But what’s the history of the gesture and how did it come to mean “yes” or “O.K.”? In Iran, the " thumbs up " gesture is considered an offensive insult. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our. Phew! We’ve come to know and love the thumbs-up and thumbs-down emojis, but these hand gestures haven’t always been so … There, it's used to mock cuckolds — husbands whose wives are unfaithful. The thumb turned, extending from the hand, was translated from Latin as a sign of “disapprobation” in a number of instances that the Oxford English Dictionary records. “The lisp used by Harold is offensive and demeans men who may be effeminate and speak in this way,” he said. Phew! Or is there some sort of joke there about it where everyone knows what it means, but they use it rudely anyway? It’s long been a hand gesture of general positivity. (Or worse.) Ad by Credit Secrets It's true - her credit score went from 588 to 781 with this. “This is the reason often historians have thought of the thumb turned down,” Corbeille says, but there’s evidence that the turn would have gone in the other direction. “‘Turning the thumb’ is turning the thumb up [from that closed fist],” he says, “and you’ve got the ‘up’ gesture.”. It's considered a curse in some African countries, and is clearly an offensive gesture in many other parts of the world. Thumbs up. The “Thumbs Up” Similar to the “A-OK”, the thumbs up sign is only a good thing for the blissfully-ignorant speakers of English. A thumbs-up as a sign of approval is a gesture that many people instinctively use, especially if language barrier prevents you from expressing your approval verbally. Try to avoid it in Thailand, though, where it’s a sign of condemnation. Many, if not most, Latin Americans find it offensive, as do citizens of West Africa, Greece, Russia, Sardinia, the south of Italy, Australia, the Philippines and many Islamic nations. The offensive version of this has your palm facing yourself, meaning the back of your hand is facing the other person. That's a lot of thumbs-up … Touching another person has special significance in India and is appropriate only in certain situations. Two textual descriptions of a gladiatorial battle, from the poets Juvenal and Prudentius, both reference the pollice verso or pollice converso, the “turned” thumb, as the signal for death. It is very offensive especially to women. “We don’t have videotapes of people from antiquity. The worlds official source for memes. An unexpected error has occurred with your sign up. I learnt this today in communications class that the "thumbs up" gesture is extremely offensive to people in the Middle East, is the like button offensive to people from there? Thumbs Up Crane School 8110 35th Ave Sacramento CA 95824. Almost everyone in the crowd has their arm out, thumb pointed down to the ground. In some circumstances, shoes should be removed before entering a living room. However, in Japan, it is a sign for money. “A thumb can press or be pressed, it works both ways.”, Corbeill located an example of what exactly the gesture might look in Nîmes, in southern France, when he found an appliqué medallion that shows a scene from a gladiatorial battle. In Iran, Greece, Russia, Sardinia, and parts of West Africa the thumbs up is as rude as … In the Middle East, for example, it means up your butt, fella. All Rights Reserved. The thumbs-up sign has been confusing people for thousands of years. However, in several countries in West Africa and the Middle East, including Iran, Iraq, and Afghanistan, the gesture has the connotation of "up yours!" The thumbs-up gesture … The thumbs-up gesture is a sign of approval in most countries. You can unsubscribe at any time. Don't give a t humbs up to show your approval when in Italy, Iraq, Iran, Greece, Russia, Sardinia or … The thumbs up. The list of Israeli dramatic films doing well around the world - "Or," "The Syrian Bride" and "Atash" - can now be joined by "Avanim," directed by Raphael Nadjari. Russia is one of these countries. His famous painting “Pollice Verso” depicts a crowded arena looking down on a few gladiators, only one of whom is still standing, foot pressed to the throat of one of his fallen combatants. THUMBS UP TRE'QUAN SMITH, WR The thumbs-up sign that today means “O.K.” in that lexicon expressed disapproval. This is the action of punching your fist into your elbow joint while raising the other fist … protectionism the 'thumbs up' sign is offensive in russia when the palm of the hand is shown, so this ____ should be altered to show the back of the hand in advertising there symbol the global market-entry strategy in which a company offers the right to a trademark, patent, licensing Is the middle finger offensive in Australia? In most cultures, crossing your fingers means you're hoping for good luck. This form of street harassment is also unacceptable as it asserts domination over another gender. No playing "Heads Up 7-Up" in Thailand, Iran, Afghanistan, and Greece. However, in some destinations such as Iran and other Middle Eastern countries, it means the opposite. In southern Sardinia, where this gesture is noted for being particularly obscene, a hitchhiker would be well advised not to wave his thumb in the air expecting a car to pick him up, or he may find himself under the wheels of a large truck. The thumbs-up sign that today means “O.K.” in that lexicon expressed disapproval. The gesture is often performed by flicking the V up from the wrist or … Thumbs-up and thumbs-down. Just ask any traveler who's given a thumbs-up in Afghanistan. “We don’t have videotapes of people from antiquity. In Western cultures, this hand gesture simply means that everything is peachy keen. Sort by. Don't give a t humbs up to show your approval when in Italy, Iraq, Iran, Greece, Russia, Sardinia or West Africa. Order Online Tickets Tickets See Availability Directions {{::location.tagLine.value.text}} Sponsored Topics. Read on, or watch the video, to see the hand gestures you definitely don't want to make overseas. Thumbs Up. Then, in 1872 the popular and influential painter Jean-Léon Gérôme, well, turned things upside-down a bit. In other words, it’s the opposite of what we think.”, Historical confusion about that thumb-pressing gesture exposes just how difficult it can be to track the evolution of body language. Creating a circle from your thumb and index finger is a sexual insult in Greece. Giving the thumbs up to somebody in Greece is equivalent to giving the middle finger to an American. Please attempt to sign up again. In much of the world today, the thumbs up means, "O.K. This includes sitting with one's feet or foot elevated. Thumbs Down at Home, Thumbs Up Abroad . Where Does the 'Thumbs-Up' Gesture Really Come From. People sarcastically use the thumbs-up in real life to express their low-key aggression, so it's not surprising that this little nugget of hostility has carried over into the digital realm. Pointing your finger. All those gestures have offensive connotations away from American soil. It consists of making a V shape by holding up one hand with your middle finger and index finger held apart from each other and with the other fingers and thumb down. A thumbs-up gesture indicating approval. Don’t make a “fig”. 11 Really Offensive Things You Don't Realize You're Saying ... or that a woman is the first in line to pick up the child-care slack, does every gender a disservice. Touching another person has special significance in India and is appropriate only in certain situations. When greeting people in India, holding out your hand to … Sign up for a daily selection of our best stories — based on your reading preferences. In Australia, it means OK, but if you move it up and down, it is considered as a grave insult. That's a lot of thumbs-up haters. The thumbs up emoji is, for many of us, an easy way to convey our approval or agreement without having to type actual words. Many, if not most, Latin Americans find it offensive, as do citizens of West Africa, Greece, Russia, Sardinia, the south of Italy, Australia, the Philippines and many Islamic nations. Thumbs Up was approved as part of Unicode 6.0 in 2010 under the name “Thumbs Up Sign” and added to Emoji 1.0 in 2015.. 87% Upvoted. “The whole ‘Roman arena’ explanation that is so often given, appears to be largely irrelevant,” wrote Desmond Morris, a zoologist who collaborated with psychologists in his 1979 book Gestures, Their Origins and Distribution, which explored the topic in Europe and the Mediterranean. From the 1600s until the early 1900s, that’s the primary dichotomy of thumbs: bent up (death) or down (life). THUMBS UP TRE'QUAN SMITH, WR For example, the word for turning also means turning a limb in question on the joint, but doing the modern thumbs-down gesture involves turning the wrist, not the thumb. We … Is it true that the thumbs up gesture is offensive in the Middle East and Greece? The offensive version of this has your palm facing yourself, meaning the back of your hand is facing the other person. A second relief in Munich from the 1st century A.D. confirmed Corbeill’s conclusion, showing the same gesture in the same context, and a 4th century riddle also implies that meaning when it describes a storm being kept at bay by a thumb “pressed” to keep liquid in a straw. “And right underneath, one of the referees is pressing his thumb. That said, “Two thumbs-up is the f–k you and that’s universal text code.” Independent Culture Newsletter The best in film, music TV & radio straight to your inbox every week Your daily dose of entertainment. Some gestures and actions are considered offensive in India though, so brush up on your cross-cultural etiquette before visiting. And in Turkey, Brazil, Venezuela, and other South American countries, it is hugely offensive and refers either to a person being a “zero” or worse. “The verb premere in latin is just as ambiguous as ‘press’ in English,” he says. A thumb signal, usually described as a thumbs-up or thumbs-down, is a common hand gesture achieved by a closed fist held with the thumb extended upward or downward in approval or disapproval, respectively. So the crowd didn’t the decide the fate of the gladiator, but rather a referee in the arena who would use that gesture to communicate a decision about whether the fighter should be spared. The Latin term for the gesture of approval, Corbeill explains, is pollices premere, which means “press your thumbs” and has been described by Pliny the Elder as a common gesture of good wishes. Or someone who's crossed their fingers in Vietnam or signaled "OK" in Brazil. In certain Commonwealth countries, including the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, an outward-facing V sign is an obscene gesture equivalent to giving someone the middle finger. Richard Nixon once raised some eyebrows in the 1950s when he made the gesture in Brazil as he stepped off a plane. Some gestures and actions are considered offensive in India though, so brush up on your cross-cultural etiquette before visiting. Don't cross your fingers in Vietnam, give a thumbs up in Greece... or beckon someone over in the Philippines: Infographic reveals the most offensive gestures around the world To Shake or Not to Shake. What you think it means: “All good!”. 3. protectionism the 'thumbs up' sign is offensive in russia when the palm of the hand is shown, so this ____ should be altered to show the back of the hand in advertising there symbol the global market-entry strategy in which a company offers the right to a trademark, patent, licensing Send us your question at history@time . Iraqis are giving passing Americans the “thumbs up” sign, which the troops interpret as a symbol of support. First, a bunch of snarky, angry-tech-Bro … Please try again later. B: *gives him the thumb up* It’s not a terrible offense, but nobody will understand what you are trying to say, so if you’re looking for a sign of approval or reassurance, a thumbs-up is probably a better way to go (if you need to use any hand gestures at all: it might be best to avoid them). “What’s great about these is that they often have text accompanying them, so what you see very clearly is two gladiators fighting to a standstill. 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