Question: What can you tell me about the folklore of yawning? Is it good luck or bad?
Answer: Caused by sluggish blood or insufficient sleep, yawning carries superstitions of devilry, disappointment, ill omen, and danger. Hindus snap their fingers three times after a yawn and call on their god for protection. Covering a yawn with one’s hand was once a method of preventing the devil from entering or a caution against losing one’s breath entirely. The connotations of ill omen probably stem from the belief that to show a yawn was to make oneself vulnerable to spirits entering the wide-open chasm of the mouth. A covered mouth was an easy remedy for that.