Assassin’s Creed Updates: Cutting off the ring finger is an Assassin tradition that is old as it gets, but does modern Assassins still follow this ritual?
The Assassins of Assassins Creed have any identifying characteristics, from their white robes to their hidden preferred weapon, the hidden blade. But do the Assassins still cut off their left ring finger as they did in the Original Assassins Creed game?
The removal of an Assassin’s left finger is also tied with the use of the hidden blade in Assassin’s Creed. Designed as a stealth weapon, the hidden blade is strapped under the Assassin’s arm, extending and extracting as Assassin flexed muscles.
The hidden blade keeps Assassin’s hand empty making them appear as a normal civilian or a passerby, which allows them to get in close proximity of their target and quietly assassinate them without raising any alarm. Thus to make sure the functionality of the blade is not hindered the Assassin removes their finger to give the blade a clear path.
Assassin’s Creed: Tradition
Although the amputation of the finger does have some roots in functionality, it was also an important symbolic gesture for the Assassins. Bayek was the first Assassin, used his hidden blade with a complete hand until he was forced to trigger the blade during the fight while his hand was in a fist.
Bayek managed to kill his target but in the process lost his ring finger. When Bayek and his wife Aya formed the Hidden Ones (The Assassins) new members of the group voluntarily amputated their ring fingers as a sign of commitment and loyalty to fight against corruption.
That tradition has remained for centuries, as shown in recent Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, which takes place in the 800s. When Eivor first meets the assassins Hytham and Basim, the Vikings speaks off the incidents they had with the blade that caused them their missing fingers. Hytham retorts “This is no mistake. This is a voluntary sacrifice to prove our devotion.”
Though Assassin’s Creed II makes reference to Altair, the original protagonist of the game, to redesign the hidden blade. Leonardo Da Vinci jokes he needs to cut off a finger, then says “Though the blade once required a sacrifice, it’s been modified. You can keep your finger”.
This indicates that after Altair’s changes the Assassins no longer felt the need to cut off their finger. In modern-day Assassin protagonist, Desmond Miles has all of his fingers, indicating that Assassins no longer amputate their fingers as a part of ancient ritual.
Though the ancient Assassin followed the rituals and traditions closely, the modern-day Assassins of Assassin’s Creed no longer feel the need to cut off their finger, which is probably best for the group.
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