Prick my thumb

Posted by David on April 15, 2007

In Reply to: Prick my thumb posted by RRC on April 15, 2007

: : "to prick my thumb"

: : Does any one know the meaning of this phrase? I've read it in Shakespeare (Macbeth) and it wasn't annotated. I have also heard Robert Graves say it in an interview.

: "By the pricking of my thumb, something wicked this way comes"
: Shakespeare's witch does not prick her thumb (poke it with a sharp point). Her thumb is pricking by which she means she feels a tingling sensation in her thumb (like pins and needles). This tingling of the thumb was taken as an omen of something about to happen.