Examples of classifier handshapes in sign language

A list below outlines some examples of how classifier handshapes can be used in American Sign Language (ASL). Note that you should name a noun first before using a classifier in sentences.

classifiers in sign language

CL:1 - pen, pencil, pole, an upright person, ...

CL:2 - two persons standing or walking side by side (CL:2 up), one person standing (CL:2 down), person lying down, eye gaze ...

CL:3 - vehicle (horizontal orientation), three persons standing or walking...

CL:4 - lines, ...

CL:5 - a large number of people, animals, or things.

CL:A - a statue...

CL:B (thumb not inside like B but closed together with fingers, thumb sometimes open, sometimes inside) - book, table, desk, surface, wall, door, window, picture, car (in some contexts), bookcase shelf, paper, foot ...

CL:C - container, cup, vase, ...

CL:F - coin, stain, button, dot, eye gaze...

CL:G - wood stick, size of something (e.g. a pile of papers) ..

CL:I - thin line, high heel ...

CL:L - a frame, a picture ...

CL:L-bent - lake, plate...

CL:O - cylindrical pipe, hose, ...

CL:S - head

CL:U - ribbon, tongue, strip of paper,

CL:Y - fat animal or person, large, thick tires of a fancy sports car, big yawn, ...

Related posts

Related post: an introduction to classifiers in ASL.