cross (one's) fingers(redirected from cross their fingers)
cross (one's) fingers
To hope that something will happen. The actual gesture, which does not have to accompany the phrase, involves crossing one's middle finger over the index finger as a superstition believed to bring good luck or ward off bad luck. I'm crossing my fingers that I get a bike for my birthday!
cross your fingers
An imperative to literally cross one's middle finger over the index finger as a superstition believed to bring good luck or ward off bad luck, or to simply wish for good luck or the success of something. OK, I'm going to turn on the machine for the first time. Here goes—cross your fingers, everyone!
cross one's fingers
Also, keep one's fingers crossed.
1. Wish for luck by crossing two fingers of one hand. For example, I'm crossing my fingers that I get the job, or Keep your fingers crossed that the hurricane goes out to sea. This superstitious statement presumably alludes to the much older practice of making the sign of the cross to ward off evil. [Early 1900s]
2. Tell a white lie that doesn't matter. For example, I told Mom I didn't eat any cookies but I had my fingers crossed. The childish belief that if one keeps one's fingers crossed one may lie with impunity probably comes from children's games in which one was "safe" if one crossed one's fingers, and the ultimate allusion may be the same as in def. 1.
cross your fingers (or keep your fingers crossed)hope that your plans will be successful; trust in good luck.
The gesture of putting your index and middle fingers across each other as a sign of hoping for good luck is a scaled-down version of the Christian one of making the sign of the Cross with your whole hand and arm as a request for divine protection. It is also superstitiously employed when telling a deliberate lie, with the idea of warding off the evil that might be expected to befall a liar.
1998 Spectator Since resources were limited … the only hope the clients had was to hang in there, fingers crossed.