WHY in sign language

How to sign "why" in American Sign Language (ASL)? And, "why not".

Meaning: For what reason or purpose.

Pronunciation (sign description): In the "Y" handshape with palm facing the side of upper head side, three fingers (index finger, middle finger, and ring finger) of dominant hand flap down twice.

Contextual variation (sign description): In the "8-thumb-open" handshape with palm facing the side of upper head side, the middle finger of dominant hand flaps down few times.

There are nuances of meaning with the movements of the hand as well as repetitions of the movement used by Deaf signers.

Grammar: Use furrowed eyebrows for a question in sentence.

Related WH-question signs

The job of a detective is to figure out the WHY, or as we call it in the biz, the motive. It's the first component to solving a crime/. If you can figure out why, then it's just a matter of time before everything else falls into place. Well, first you have to have a WHAT. The what is usually a crime. WHERE is typically a bank or fancy vault of some sort. HOW usually involves an intricate heist… that or guns. You can tell WHICH by WHEN it happens. If it's at night, it's a heist. If it's during the day, it's probably a robbery. You're also going to have to take into consideration HOW MUCH they took. Once you piece all that together, you're left with one burning question. WHO? This we may never know, because they were wearing a mask, and they got away. If only we had a clue.

But, why? BECAUSE I say so. But why? Why not!

Meaning: "Why not" used to make a suggestion or to express agreement.

First 100 words.

  1. again
  2. also
  3. ask
  4. bad
  5. boy
  6. but
  7. can
  8. come
  9. deaf
  10. different
  11. drink
  12. drive
  13. eat
  14. email
  15. excuse
  16. family
  17. feel
  18. few
  19. find
  20. fine
  21. fingerspell
  22. finish
  23. food
  24. for
  25. forget
  26. friend
  27. get
  28. girl
  29. give
  30. go
  31. good
  32. have, has, had
  33. he
  34. hearing
  35. hello
  36. help
  37. home
  38. how
  39. Internet
  40. know
  41. later
  42. like (feeling)
  43. little
  44. live
  45. man
  46. many
  47. me
  48. meet
  49. more
  50. my
  51. name
  52. need
  53. new
  54. no
  55. not
  56. now
  57. ok, okay
  58. old
  59. other
  60. please
  61. remember
  62. same
  63. say
  64. school
  65. see
  66. she
  67. should
  68. sign, signed word
  69. slow
  70. some
  71. sorry
  72. store
  73. take
  74. tell
  75. text, sms
  76. thank, thank you
  77. their
  78. they
  79. think
  80. time
  81. tired
  82. try
  83. understand
  84. use
  85. wait
  86. want
  87. what
  88. when
  89. where
  90. which
  91. who
  92. why
  93. will
  94. with
  95. woman
  96. work
  97. write
  98. yes
  99. you
  100. your

As you feel more comfortable with the first few hundreds of ASL signs, progress further with your vocabulary and learn signing more.