Why do people say “God Bless You” after you sneeze?
Many people have become accustomed to saying "bless you" or "gesundheit" when someone sneezes…What do those phrases actually mean, anyway? Wishing someone well after they sneeze & the phrase "God bless you" is attributed to Pope Gregory the Great, who uttered it in the sixth century during a bubonic plague epidemic (sneezing is an obvious symptom of one form of the plague). The exchangeable term "gesundheit" comes from Germany, and it literally means "health." The idea is that a sneeze typically precedes illness. It entered the English language in the early part of the 20th century, brought to the United States by German-speaking immigrants. For the most part, the various sneeze responses originated from ancient superstitions. Some people believed that a sneeze causes the soul to escape the body through the nose. Saying "bless you" would stop the devil from claiming the person's freed soul. Others believed the opposite: that evil spirits use the sneeze as an opportunity to enter a person's body. There was also the misconception that the heart momentarily stops during a sneeze (it doesn't), and that saying "bless you" was a way of welcoming the person back to life. We now know that sneezing is a reflex action and is most often the sign of something relatively benign, such as a cold or allergy. A sneeze also can be provoked by being outside in the sunlight or from smelling a strong odor. Still, we persist in the custom of saying "bless you" or "gesundheit," mainly out of habit and common courtesy - https://people.howstuffworks.com/sneezing.htm.