It was a practice in our Navy in the days of sail for seamen to have the letters for the words "HOLD FAST" tattooed just below the knuckles of each finger. A seaman's life frequently hung on this brief maxim.
Hayward, John T.
"President's Notes: Challenge!,"
Naval War College Review: Vol. 21
, Article 2.
Available at: http://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/nwc-review/vol21/iss3/2