noun (plural -mies) Etymology: Middle English phisonomie, from Anglo-French phisenomie, from Late Latin physiognomonia, physiognomia, from Greek physiognōmonia, from physiognōmōn judging character by the features, from physis nature, physique, appearance + gnōmōn interpreter — more at gnomon Date: 14th century 1. the art of discovering temperament and character from outward appearance 2. the facial features held to show qualities of mind or character by their configuration or expression 3. external aspect; also inner character or quality revealed outwardly

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Physiognomy — (Gk. physis , nature and gnomon , judge, interpreter) is the assessment of a person s character or personality from their outer appearance, especially the face. The term physiognomy can also refer to the general appearance of a person, object or… …   Wikipedia

  • Physiognomy — Phys i*og no*my, n.; pl. {Physiognomies}. [OE. fisonomie, phisonomie, fisnamie, OF. phisonomie, F. physiognomie, physiognomonie, from Gr. ?; fy sis nature + ? one who knows or examines, a judge, fr. ?, ?, to know. See {Physic}, and {Know}, and cf …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • physiognomy — physiognomy, physiology Physiognomy (pronounced with the g silent) is ‘the cast or form of a person s features’, whereas physiology is ‘the science of the functions of living organisms and their parts’ …   Modern English usage

  • physiognomy — index appearance (look), feature (appearance) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • physiognomy — late 14c., art of judging characters from facial features, from L.L. physiognomia, from Gk. physiognomia the judging of a person s nature by his features, from physio , comb. form of physis nature (see PHYSIC (Cf. physic)) + gnomon (gen.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • physiognomy — *face, countenance, visage, mug, puss …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • physiognomy — ► NOUN (pl. physiognomies) ▪ a person s facial features or expression, especially when regarded as indicative of character. ORIGIN Greek phusiogn monia, from phusis nature + gn m n judge or interpreter …   English terms dictionary

  • physiognomy — [fiz΄ē äg′nə mē; ] chiefly Brit [, fiz΄ēän′ə mē] n. [ME fisonomie < MFr phisonomie < ML physonomia < Gr physiognōmonia < physis, nature (see PHYSIC) + gnōmōn, one who knows: see GNOMON] 1. the practice of trying to judge character and …   English World dictionary

  • physiognomy — physiognomic /fiz ee og nom ik, ee euh nom /, physiognomical, physiognomonic /fiz ee og neuh mon ik, on euh /, physiognomonical, adj. physiognomically, physiognomonically, adv. physiognomist, n. /fiz ee og neuh mee, on euh mee/, n., pl.… …   Universalium

  • physiognomy — [[t]fɪ̱ziɒ̱nəmi[/t]] physiognomies N COUNT Your physiognomy is your face, especially when it is considered to show your real character. [FORMAL] He was fascinated by her physiognomy the prominent nose, brooding eyes and thick hair. Syn: face …   English dictionary

  • physiognomy — UK [ˌfɪzɪˈɒnəmɪ] / US [ˌfɪzɪˈɑnəmɪ] noun [countable] Word forms physiognomy : singular physiognomy plural physiognomies very formal the way that someone s face looks …   English dictionary

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