Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Crossing the Hand.

 Cross as Two Sticks.Crossing the Line 
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Crossing the Hand.
Fortune-tellers of the gipsy race always bid their dupe to “cross their hand with a bit of silver.” This, they say, is for luck. Of course, the sign of the cross warded off witches and all other evil spirits, and, as fortune-telling belongs to the black arts, the palm is signed with a cross to keep off the wiles of the devil. “You need fear no evil, though I am a fortune-teller, if by the sign of the cross you exorcise the evil spirit.”   1

 Cross as Two Sticks.Crossing the Line 


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