- the face or countenance, especially when considered as an index to the character: a fierce physiognomy.
- Also called anthroposcopy. the art of determining character or personal characteristics from the form or features of the body, especially of the face.
- the outward appearance of anything, taken as offering some insight into its character: the physiognomy of a nation.
Origin of physiognomy
Examples from the Web for physiognomies
Their physiognomies were such as inspire benevolence and command respect.The Man With The Broken Ear
Generally their physiognomies are pleasing, but they cannot be said to have much character.Celebrated Travels and Travellers
The talents of Bohemia were as diverse as the physiognomies of its citizens.Vie de Bohme
To judge by their physiognomies, they ruled by brute force and craft.Cathedral Cities of Italy
William Wiehe Collins
Things lose their individuality, and men their physiognomies.The Reform of Education
- a person's features or characteristic expression considered as an indication of personality
- the art or practice of judging character from facial features
- the outward appearance of something, esp the physical characteristics of a geographical region
Word Origin and History for physiognomies
late 14c., "art of judging characters from facial features," from Old French phizonomie and directly from Late Latin physiognomia, from Greek physiognomia "the judging of a person's nature by his features," from physio- (see physio-) + gnomon (genitive gnomonos) "judge, indicator" (see gnomon). Meaning "face, countenance, features" is from c.1400. Related: Physiognomical.
- Facial features, especially when considered as an indicator of character or as a factor in diagnosis.
- Estimation of one's character and mental qualities by a study of the face and general bodily carriage.