Fingers and fingering sound so alike but are actually different in meaning. Finger is indeed a rich bank of varying expressions.
The different fingers include: thumb, index finger, middle finger, ring finger and little finger.
History shows that the earliest use of the word finger dates back to 1450 with the meaning “to point” while the reference ‘to touch with the fingers’ dates back from 1590.
Due to the nature of the finger being long and thin, the word is used for almost anything long and thin.
Below are some idioms that have the word ‘finger’ in them;
To lay a finger on someone (to harm)
I met the baby crying even though I couldn’t tell who laid a finger on him.
To finger (to incriminate)
After the touts were accosted at the motor park by policemen, they fingered their accomplices without further delay.
To lift a finger (to make an effort to help)
Belinda hardly lifts a finger except when asked in as much as she litters the place with her papers.
To raise a finger against (to offer violence against)
Mother Theresa never raised a finger against any of the children she adopted.
To cross one’s fingers (to trust to luck)
As for Ken, his known way is to cross his fingers while putting his best to his work
To burn one’s fingers (to suffer financial losses)
The Arabian billionaire Mohammed Abdul severely burned his fingers in the crude oil exportation of 1990 that it took him almost ten years to regain his financial standing.
To point an accusing finger (to point with the forefinger as a gesture of blame)
Esther Braithwaite pointed an accusing finger at her friend for betraying her by disclosing her secret to her colleagues.
To make a slip of the finger (to make an unintentional movement of the finger)
In today’s world of digital communication, just one slip of the finger could end up allotting to a different person what was originally meant for someone else.
To put one’s finger on a problem (to identify the crux of a matter)
Naomi Williams put his finger on the problem when he said “it is impossible to feel grateful and depressed in the same moment”.
A finger of Scotch or other liquid (a unit of measurement approximately the width of an adult finger)
Sydney headed straight to the sideboard immediately after the meeting, pouring two healthy fingers of scotch into two glasses.
A wag of the finger (a gesture or statement of reprimand)
Literally, the “finger wag” is an act of reprimanding or warning someone by moving the forefinger from side to side.
Nigeria’s Super Eagle’s captain Sunday Oliseh is noted for wagging his finger as a warning to opponents that they could not score against his team.