We’ve all either administrated or taken the 5 Finger Test. Whether you have glasses or not, some person has probably stuck their hand in your face and asked, “How many fingers am I holding up?” The correct answer can be anywhere from 0-5. However, does it really go up to 5? Several studies say otherwise.

So, why wouldn’t a thumb be considered a finger? Sure, it’s a little short, but according to Oxford Dictionaries, it has “nails on one surface of the uppermost joint, and a unique pattern of fingerprints (or thumbprints) on the other surface of that joint “. We can bend it; we can stick it up in the air as a sign of reassurance, the works. Even so, there are a few differences between our “ten” appendages.

Although society today clearly regards a thumb as a finger, it’s technically considered something else. A thumb, along with all of our other fingers and toes, is classified as a digit. In fact, the Oxford definition for a finger is “each of the four slender jointed parts attached to either hand (or five, if the thumb is included)”. Four. Or five. So really, it could go either way. However, our stubby little thumbs have a slightly different structure than, say, the pointer finger: “The thumb only consists of one joint and two phalanges (bones), whereas the other four digits have two joints and three phalanges. (Oxford Dictionaries, again) This slightly altered structure shows that the thumb really might not be a finger.

Even so, our generation uses thumbs as frequently-if not more than-our other fingers. Our opposable skills help us constantly; whether it be texting our friends on phones, or majestically skiing the Alps, our thumbs are one of the most necessary “fingers” we have. So I ask you not to think of the thumb as a non-finger: think of it as THE finger! *thumbs up*

Well, what do you think?

I’d love to see your opinion on the matter.

Until then, this myth is:
UNCLASSIFIED