- being or standing wide open; gaping: the yawning mouth of a cave.
- indicating by yawns one's weariness or indifference: The lecturer was oblivious to his yawning audience.
Origin of yawning
- to open the mouth somewhat involuntarily with a prolonged, deep inhalation and sighing or heavy exhalation, as from drowsiness or boredom.
- to open wide like a mouth.
- to extend or stretch wide, as an open and deep space.
- to say with a yawn.
- Archaic. to open wide, or lay open, as if by yawning.
- an act or instance of yawning.
- an opening; open space; chasm.
- Also yawner. Informal. something so boring as to make one yawn: Critics say the new fashions are one big yawn.
Origin of yawn
SynonymsSee more synonyms for yawn on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for yawning
Allergies are a common culprit behind daily yawning sessions for the 50 million Americans who suffer from them.10 Reasons You’re Exhausted and What to Do About It
April 25, 2014
“While inhaling, imagine that your throat is opening as if you were yawning,” says Anzovino.5 Healthier Ways to Detox (That Aren’t Juice Cleanses)
February 20, 2014
The insane, obscene, yawning difference between the pay of workers and bosses has long been used as a cudgel by labor groups.The SEC Can’t Make CEOs Care About Their Employees
September 19, 2013
When Hebron makes it to the media the yawning gap between Hebron and Tel Aviv is bridged for a minute or two.Israeli Soldiers Dancing at Hebron Wedding Were Probably Not Welcome Guests
August 30, 2013
Inching towards the opposing positions will never bridge the yawning chasm between them.The Reality Behind Kerry's Optimism
July 1, 2013
A note came by a messenger who waited for no answer, as he told the yawning maid.Within the Law
"Guess I'll be turnin' in," he volunteered affably, yawning and stretching.The Black Bag
Louis Joseph Vance
With all his might he sought to save himself from the yawning chasm.The Law-Breakers
Two fat ladies, open-mouthed, were yawning with satisfaction.His Masterpiece
Maurice's grave would be there, a yawning chasm, to part them as long as they should live.The Downfall
- (intr) to open the mouth wide and take in air deeply, often as in involuntary reaction to tiredness, sleepiness, or boredom
- (tr) to express or utter while yawning
- (intr) to be open wide as if threatening to engulf (someone or something)the mine shaft yawned below
- the act or an instance of yawning
Word Origin and History for yawning
"act of yawning," 1690s, from yawn (v.). Meaning "boring thing" is attested from 1889.
c.1300, yenen, yonen, from Old English ginian, gionian "open the mouth wide, gape," from Proto-Germanic *gin- (cf. Old Norse gina "to yawn," Dutch geeuwen, Old High German ginen, German gähnen "to yawn"), from PIE *ghai- "to yawn, gape" (cf. Old Church Slavonic zijajo "to gape," Lithuanian zioju, Czech zivati "to yawn," Greek khainein, Latin hiare "to yawn, gape," Sanskrit vijihite "to gape, be ajar"). Related: Yawned; yawning.
- To open the mouth wide with a deep inhalation, usually involuntarily from drowsiness, fatigue, or boredom.
- The act of yawning.