Libraries & hours Holiday schedule Policies Press releases Employment Library Foundation Contact us More...
Did you know that there are greater chances of being left-handed if others in your family are left-handed?
Most left-handers have been subjected at some time to a period of enforced use of the right hand. However, as Victor Hugo wrote in his "Les Miserable," Jean Valjean said, "The left-handed are precious; they take places which are inconvenient for the rest."
Leftsidedness and rightsidedness are very fundamental conditions. About 11% of people are left-handed. It is more common for males than females to be left-handed.
There is little consensus among scientists about the causes of left-handedness. Some researchers believe that the trait is due to genetics. Other scientists propose that being left-handed is due to environmental factors. Handedness, like many human traits, is probably determined by a complex interaction between genes and the environment.
Throughout history some have consider left-handers to be sinister. The Inuit believed that left-handers were sorcerers.
The Scottish Clan Kerr, known for their swordsmanship, built their Ferniehirst Castle with a staircase that spiraled counterclockwise. This architecture made it easier for left-handed swordsmen to swing their swords. Thus, in Scotland, Kerr-handed, means left-handed.
Left-hander Jimi Hendrix played a right-handed guitar upside-down. He would string the guitar in a normal manner, with the thinnist string close to the floor.
Peter Dune was the first person to use the term "southpaw," frequently used in sports. And, there are many southpaws playing sports. However, in polo and Jai-Alai, it is forbidden to have any left-handed players.
Left-handers might consider the sport of fencing. The left-handed fencer is at an advantage playing against a right-handed fencer. Can you imagine an Olympic team of left-handed fencers?
Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff