Not every gest is social: there is nothing social in the movements a man makes in order to brush off a fly; but if this same man, poorly dressed, is struggling against guard-dogs, the gest becomes social.
-- Roland Barthes, Stephen Heath, Image, music, text
Perhaps the greatest problem with Holt's approach is that it requires us to believe that the details of the gest can be used as evidence of the content of the original Robin Hood story, which he himself believes to predate the mid-thirteenth century.
-- Jeffrey L. Singman, Robin Hood: the shaping of the legend
Gest shares the same roots as jest, "to joke," from the Latin gerrere, "to carry on."