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The symbol ☞ is a punctuation mark, called an index, manicule (from the Latin root 'manus' for 'hand') or fist. Though rare today, this symbol was in common use between the 12th and 18th centuries in the margins of books, and was formerly included in lists of standard punctuation marks. Its typical use is as a bullet-like symbol to direct the reader’s attention to important text, having roughly the same meaning as the word “attention” or “note”. Some encyclopedias use it in articles to cross-reference, as in ☞ other articles. It occasionally sees use in magazines and comic books to indicate to the reader that a story on the right-hand page continues onto the next.
It primarily fell out of favor because its complex design made it unfit for handwriting, and its wide size made it difficult to fit on a typewriter or on early, low-resolution, monospaced computer fonts. It was therefore not included in ASCII. It was, however, added to Unicode.
Other names for the symbol include printer's fist, bishop's fist, digit, mutton-fist and pointing hand (see Sherman, p. 10).
Other uses 
In literature 
American science fiction writer Kurt Vonnegut used the symbol as a form of margin on the first line of every paragraph in his novel Breakfast Of Champions. The literary effect of this was to create separation between each paragraph, reinforcing the stream of consciousness style of the text.
There are ten index symbols in Unicode.
- U+261A ☚ black left pointing index
- U+261B ☛ black right pointing index
- U+261C ☜ white left pointing index
- U+261D ☝ white up pointing index
- U+261E ☞ white right pointing index
- U+261F ☟ white down pointing index
- U+1F446 👆 white up pointing backhand index
- U+1F447 👇 white down pointing backhand index
- U+1F448 👈 white left pointing backhand index
- U+1F449 👉 white right pointing backhand index
In addition, the dingbat font Wingdings 2, found in all versions of Microsoft Windows since Windows 95, includes 16 forms of the index, and the original Wingdings font features four others (resembling the white Unicode indices).