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American Sign Language: "egg" or "eggs"



T
he sign for "egg" is made by forming both hands into the letter "h."  In one smooth movement, bring the middle finger side of your dominant "h" hand down on top of the index finger side of your non-dominant "h" hand. Move both hands down and out as if breaking apart an "egg."

EGG:

 


Does your sister like eggs?
 
 



How do you like to cook eggs? = How do you like your eggs?
 
 



Notes:

In a message dated 7/28/2003 2:21:54 PM Central Daylight Time, lmurphy@______.com asks:

Dear Dr. Bill,
Does egg follow the noun/verb rule?
Lynne
----------

Lynne,
A double movement is NOT required for this sign to mean the noun "egg."
There is another variation of the sign for egg that uses a "crack" then "split" type movement, but even that variation is still just a "noun" referring to "an egg."
How do that version:
Bring the right hand "h" down onto the left hand "h," then lift the right hand up an inch or so while bringing up the left hand a half-inch and then bring both hands down and apart.  This second version is soft of like "cracking and egg and then lifting the egg up a bit to break it apart into your pan.
I sort of like that version, but my wife is standing over my shoulder as I type this.
She said, "No."
And it is obvious she is not open to discussion on this.
Sort of brutal eh? 
Anyway, I suppose you could sort of try to make the "H" hand version work as a verb. If you were telling a story about making French toast you could do the sign egg over wherever you put your bowl in the story and it would be understood as "crack an egg into the bowl,"  but you'd be better off using bent 3 handshapes and mime the cracking of an egg.  Under my "crack" page in the signs listing I show the sign for "crack an egg." (An instrument classifier).
- Dr. Bill



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