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Article: Little finger

Little finger

Etymology and Usage

  • Derived from the Dutch word 'pink,' meaning little finger.
  • Earliest recorded use of the term pinkie is from Scotland in 1808.
  • Common in Scottish English, American English, and other Commonwealth countries.
  • Also spelled as 'pinky.'
  • Used extensively in New Zealand, Canada, and Australia.

Nerves, Muscles, and Gestures

  • Little finger is difficult to bend independently due to intertwined nerves.
  • Pinky swear or pinky promise is a common gesture among American children.
  • Similar gesture seen in China and Korea, known as 'yaksok.'
  • Japanese yakuza members may have parts of their little finger removed as a penalty.
  • Extending the little finger while drinking from a teacup is generally considered snobbish.


  • Signet ring traditionally worn on the little finger of a gentleman's left hand.
  • Signet ring is part of the regalia of European monarchies and the Pope.
  • Iron Ring is a symbolic ring worn by Canadian engineers on the little finger.
  • Engineers Ring is worn by American engineers on the fifth digit of the working hand.
  • Little fingers are the most common location for wearing rings.

Utility and Smartphone Use

  • Little finger is often used as support for one-handed typing on smartphones.
  • Some users reported dents and pain in the little finger after prolonged smartphone use.
  • Referred to as 'iPhone pinky' or 'smartphone pinky.'
  • Indentations on the skin disappear after a short while without cell phone use.
  • Little finger support can be helpful but may cause discomfort with excessive use.

Related Concepts

  • Finger numbering.
  • Fifth metacarpal bone, proximal to the little finger.
  • Pinky ring, a ring specifically worn on the little finger.
  • Red string of fate, a Chinese belief related to the little finger.
  • References for further reading and information.

Little finger Data Sources

Reference URL
Knowledge Graph

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