I've finished a short article on the arrow symbol—comprising a copy of a personal letter from Sir Ernst Gombrich—which is now stored in the commentary section of the Gombrich Archive at the University of Birmingham [access]. I was happy to collaborate on this task with Richard Woodfield [Honorary Senior Research Fellow in Art History at the University of Birmingham], who built the Gombrich website.
Alternatively, you can click the image to download directly a PDF version of my paper from a personal webspace.
I never actually got around to completing my research in this fascinating domain, which would have involved months of investigations. As I suggest in my paper, things have changed greatly today because of the existence of the Internet, and I would be thrilled if a young researcher (maybe in the field of graphic design) were to take up the challenge of presenting a global story of symbolic arrows.