What does this gesture mean for English speaking people?

5jj

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it could mean, among other things "And note this interesting point".



He raised a finger good is not good English. Ignore the crossed-out comment. I misread the question. Thanks, tzfujimino.
 
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tzfujimino

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I think you misread the sentence, 5jj.

"... is He raised a finger good?"
:)
 

probus

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As 5jj pointed out, a raised index finger can have a variety of meanings. We'd need context to sort out which. It also depends on whether the finger is steady or wagging. In France certainly, and perhaps elsewhere in Europe, a wagged index finger means a grave error has been (or is about to be) made.
 

99bottles

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it could mean, among other things "And note this interesting point".



He raised a finger good is not good English. Ignore the crossed-out comment. I misread the question. Thanks, tzfujimino.
So, is it OK if I write He raised a finger? Or should I write He raised his index finger lest a reader thinks that I'm talking about the vulgar middle-finger gesture?
 

5jj

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It depends on the context in which you wish to use the sentence. Could you give us the sentence preceding and the one following your sentence?
 

Jemima23

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I think simply saying: "raising a finger" would be close in a reader's imagination to giving somebody a finger, which, judging by the picture that you've linked to, is not what you're trying to say/imply.
Also, my takeaway from the picture would be that this person just had an idea, like a "Eureka!" moment.
 

99bottles

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It depends on the context in which you wish to use the sentence. Could you give us the sentence preceding and the one following your sentence?
OK, here is some more context. Character A makes a suggestion. Character B agrees. Character A is excited. However, at that moment...

'But, only on these conditions,' Character B added, raising her index finger/a finger.

Then she proceeds to elaborate on the conditions.
 

Skrej

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As always, context is king, but with the facial expression in that picture, I'd take it as a warning. At least in the US, it's common to "wag" your index finger as a kind of warning. Usually it's accompanied by some kind of verbal interjection such as "nuh-uh" or "no-no-no" or various other negations.

However, sometimes people will just raise a finger when asking a question, or even when making a particular point.
 

Tarheel

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It can be hard to tell what is intended from a still shot. However, I would say he is emphasizing that he is about to make a point.
 

Avu Ky

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Not a teacher.

Sometimes it doesn't mean anything. Just a HABIT.
 

emsr2d2

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Not a teacher

Sometimes it doesn't mean anything. It's just a HABIT habit.

Please remember to write in complete sentences on the forum and don't use capital letters for whole words (except where appropriate) - it's the online equivalent of shouting.

I have added "Not a teacher" to your post. Please remember to add that yourself whenever you attempt to help another learner.
 

99bottles

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I have added "Not a teacher" to your post. Please remember to add that yourself whenever you attempt to help another learner.
As for me, I put it in my signature so that I don't have to add it every time, yet you still require me to add it every time. 😅
 
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