When someone burps loudly, why is it a custom to ask "Stück Brot dazu?"?

I came across this in this article:

Einer rülpst laut, sie ruft ihm jovial zu: „Stück Brot dazu?“ Voll Sympathie zwinkern die beiden sich zu. Romantisch, wie sich hier das Herz zum Herzen findet.

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    Please note that this seems only to be custom in some parts of Germany. I'm a native speaker and I have never heard it. Aug 25 '20 at 19:08
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    @Closevoters: This seems a legit question about etymology and also about the literal and idiomatical meaning of this phrase to me. Where in the Germanophonic area it is common and where not could also be part of the etymological section of the answer. Aug 25 '20 at 20:30
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    Is it a custom, or is it rather a somewhat commonly repeated joke among some people? Aug 25 '20 at 21:18
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    My guess is, that when eating soup, a sausage, etc., it is customary to ask, if you'd like some bread. After a burp it is common to say "Mahlzeit", as it often follows after eating a lot. To me, asking "Stück Brot dazu" just takes this a step further. Bottom line: It's a joking way to acknowledge your burp. Aug 25 '20 at 22:00
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    I am familiar with that phrase in the context of sneezing / coughing. My guess would be that it stems from the fact that you usually serve bread with something liquid like soup. So if sneeze / wet cough there's body fluids, ... you can imagine the rest. It should be obvious but the custom is rather rude imo.
    – idkfa
    Aug 26 '20 at 6:43

As a native speaker, I have not heared this phrase often, but similar phrases in similar contexts.

In Germany, as in many other countries, it's considered rude to burp loudly. And obviously, you dont get your head chopped off when you do. But its a usual thing to address the rudeness of others with some form of "jovial", yet criticizing remark. Mostly just jokingly criticizing, even though you dont mind the behaviour, but you know its considered rude.

Some examples would be, when you sneeze loudly, some people might yell out "aufwischen!" (to mop up), as if to say, "you sneezed so damn hard you left a puddle".

When people stare with their mouth open, a common remark is to say something along the lines of "mach den mund zu es zieht" (close your mouth, you're creating a draft).

When people had their pants zipper open, people would look them in the eye and just, seemingly randomly, start counting. Everybody understood what that meant. It was kind of an inside joke. The zipper on ones pants is referred to as the "cows barn" and counting would mean "counting down how many cows are escaping", as the "barn is open".

In todays use of my mothers tounge, Aramaic, we have a phrase when someone sneezes really loud. Which roughly translates to "Damn, you woke the dead!"

Now, with the "Stück brot dazu", its a similar remark, but its explanation is a little more disgusting. Bread is served as an addition to many dishes in many different cultures. And in restaurants you can ask for extra bread to your meal. The person making the exaggerated remark jokingly suggests that some of your meal might have come up with that burp and its so massive that it itself counts as a meal. Or that you "re-eat" your food. Therefor they ask you, if you'd like to have some bread to enjoy your "newly created" meal.

Its a friendly little jab, usually not taken as a serious remark but rather playful banter. A sort of inside joke or hyperbole of the other persons behaviour.

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    "Stück Brot dazu" is also used as a comment to other "body sounds" See here or here. Also "Mahlzeit" is used as a comment to a burp.
    – Paul Frost
    Aug 27 '20 at 22:32

I have never heard it but its obviously just to comfort him/her in that context and not make them feel embarrassed. I guess saying it in a harsher voice would have a meaning like: Oh come on stop that...

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