The Knife Rule
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The Knife Rule or Giving an Open Knife Back Closed refers to the superstition that it is bad luck to close a pocket knife that someone else opened. The theory has been shared online throughout the 2010s and became popularized on TikTok in March 2023 after several users posted videos referencing "the knife rule."
The superstition that closing a knife, such as a pocket knife, that someone else opened is bad luck has been shared online several times throughout the 2010s, although it is unclear where it started. On March 13th, 2011, a 1911forum user described it as good knife etiquette taught to them in the 50s, writing, "One rule was to 'always return a borrowed knife as it was handed to you', in other words, closed if it was handed to you that way, and open if it came that way." On July 8th, 2014, the Lansky blog included the belief in a list of superstitions about knives, writing, "It‘s bad luck to close a pocket knife unless you were the one who opened it." Exquisite Knives shared the superstition in a blog post on October 15th, 2017.
On March 14th, 2023, TikToker @blaisemcmahon005 posted a video captioned, "Gave a girl an open knife and she gave it back closed. Shit hasn't been the same since," garnering over 1.9 million views in two days (shown below).
@blaisemcmahon005 #fyp ♬ original sound – Marc
On March 15th, TikTokers @lil.nichole and @mx5ava posted similar videos referencing the knife rule, garnering over 209,000 and 169,000 views respectively in a day (shown below, left and right).
@lil.nichole #CapCutVelocity ♬ original sound – Marc
@mx5ava Ig he doesnt know the knife rule🙃🙃#fyp #4upage #kniferule ♬ original sound – Marc
@mattrob23xx #CapCutVelocity #fyp #SeeHerGreatness ♬ original sound – taytay💟⭐️
 1911 Forums – knife etiquette
 Lansky – JULY 8, 2014
 Exquisite Knives – Knife Superstitions from Around the World
 TikTok – blaisemcmahon005
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