middle fingers

middle fingers: before the battle of agincourt in 1415, the french, anticipating victory over the english, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured english soldiers. without the middle finger it would be impossible to draw the renowned english longbow and therefore [soldiers would] be incapable of fighting in the future. this famous weapon was made of the native english yew tree, and the act of drawing the longbow was known as “plucking the yew.” much to the bewilderment of the french, the english won a major upset and began mocking the french by waving their middle fingers at the defeated french, saying, “see, we can still pluck yew!”