• WordNet 3.6
    • v countenance consent to, give permission "She permitted her son to visit her estranged husband","I won't let the police search her basement","I cannot allow you to see your exam"
    • n countenance the appearance conveyed by a person's face "a pleasant countenance","a stern visage"
    • n countenance the human face (`kisser' and `smiler' and `mug' are informal terms for `face' and `phiz' is British)
    • n countenance formal and explicit approval "a Democrat usually gets the union's endorsement"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Countenance Appearance or expression of the face; look; aspect; mien. "So spake the Son, and into terror changed
      His countenance ."
    • Countenance Approving or encouraging aspect of face; hence, favor, good will, support; aid; encouragement. "Thou hast made him . . . glad with thy countenance .""This is the magistrate's peculiar province, to give countenance to piety and virtue, and to rebuke vice."
    • Countenance Superficial appearance; show; pretense. "The election being done, he made countenance of great discontent thereat."
    • Countenance The face; the features. "In countenance somewhat doth resemble you."
    • Countenance To encourage; to favor; to approve; to aid; to abet. "This conceit, though countenanced by learned men, is not made out either by experience or reason.""Error supports custom, custom countenances error."
    • Countenance To make a show of; to pretend. "Which to these ladies love did countenance ."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n countenance The face; the whole form of the face; the features, considered as a whole; the visage.
    • n countenance The characteristic appearance or expression of the face; look; aspect; facial appearance.
    • n countenance Aspect or appearance conferred; seeming imparted to anything, as by words or conduct in regard to it: as. to put a good or a bad countenance upon anything.
    • n countenance Appearance of favor or good will; support afforded by friendly action; encouragement; patronage.
    • n countenance Assumed appearance; seeming; show; pretense.
    • n countenance In old law, credit or estimation by reason of one's estate, and with reference to his condition in life.
    • n countenance Hence Favor resulting from estimation or repute; trust; confidence.
    • n countenance Good appearance, presentableness.
    • n countenance In favor; in estimation.
    • n countenance Synonyms See face, n.
    • countenance To appear friendly or favorable to; favor; encourage; aid; support; abet.
    • countenance To make a show of; pretend.
    • countenance To give effect to; act suitably to; be in keeping with.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Countenance kown′ten-ans the face: the expression of the face: appearance
    • v.t Countenance to favour or approve
    • ***


  • Joseph Addison
    “Good nature is more agreeable in conversation than wit and gives a certain air to the countenance which is more amiable than beauty.”
  • W. H. Auden
    “The countenances of children, like those of animals, are masks, not faces, for they have not yet developed a significant profile of their own.”
  • Charles Dickens
    “It opens the lungs, washes the countenance, exercises the eyes, and softens down the temper; so cry away.”
  • Richard Brinsley Sheridan
    “An unforgiving eye, and a damned disinheriting countenance!”
  • Benjamin Franklin
    “A benevolent man should allow a few faults in himself, to keep his friends in countenance.”
  • Samuel Johnson
    “Patron: One who countenances, supports or protects. Commonly a wretch who supports with insolence, and is paid with flattery.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. contenance, countenaunce, demeanor, composure, F. contenance, demeanor, fr. L. continentia, continence, LL. also, demeanor, fr. L. continere, to hold together, repress, contain. See Contain, and cf. Continence


In literature:

Esperance in that dress, with that sunburnt countenance!
"Monte-Cristo's Daughter" by Edmund Flagg
When he had searched that to its deepest recesses he stopped and looked up with a beaming countenance.
"The Fugitives" by R.M. Ballantyne
His countenance bore the indications of heartrending sorrow.
"The Scalp Hunters" by Mayne Reid
His manner was refined, and the expression of his countenance denoted an amiable and gentle disposition.
"John Deane of Nottingham" by W.H.G. Kingston
Her sweet countenance showed me how much she felt for the boy.
"In the Wilds of Africa" by W.H.G. Kingston
The sexton noticed the deathly paleness of Luke's countenance, but he fancied it might proceed from the tinge of the sallow moonlight.
"Rookwood" by William Harrison Ainsworth
Her distorted countenance exhibited the agonies she must have suffered.
"Won from the Waves" by W.H.G. Kingston
It wreathes the countenance of every doer of good.
"Searchlights on Health: Light on Dark Corners" by B.G. Jefferis
He turned his gloomy eyes upon the glowing countenance of Triboulet.
"Under the Rose" by Frederic Stewart Isham
His countenance was perplexed and anxious.
"The Hour and the Man" by Harriet Martineau

In poetry:

Oh! yes, I love the sunshine!
Like kindness, or like mirth,
Upon a human countenance,
Is sunshine on the earth.
"The Sunshine" by Mary Botham Howitt
Our thoughts lie open to Thy sight;
And, naked to Thy glance,
Our secret sins are in the light
Of Thy pure countenance.
"Our Master" by John Greenleaf Whittier
They preach men should not faint, but pray,
And seek until they find;
But God is very far away,
Nor is his countenance kind.
"The Disciple" by George MacDonald
Hast thou no care for this one child,
This thinking, living need?
Or is thy countenance only mild,
Thy heart not love indeed?
"The Disciple" by George MacDonald
The words, for tender heart so sore,
His voice did seem to rue;
The gentle wrath his countenance wore,
With her had not to do.
"The Syrophenician Woman" by George MacDonald
Command her soul to advance
And inform the shape
Which has made escape
And before my countenance
Answers me glance for glance—-
"Mesmerism" by Robert Browning

In news:

Heidi, the cross-eyed opossum , whose cute but confused countenance warmed hearts around the world, has passed away.
But Chief Wahoo 's smiling countenance has overseen it all, never to be called for account.
This salad features the last of the winter citrus, but its countenance is bright and spring-fresh.
For the most part, I find that the great majority suffer from a surfeit of oak, superfluity of alcohol, and countenances so fat, bold & buttery that they overpower any food with which they come in contact.
LAS VEGAS — His familiar smiling countenance unchanged since New Orleans Hornets fans last expressed their love, and most recently their disdain, Chris Paul said he understands conflicted emotions.
We instantly try to decode their speech, ethnicity, countenance, clothing, etc.
Host Howie Nave points to this week's Harveys Tahoe Improv headliner, Rocky LaPorte, as Ron Morey has an exageratedly friendly countenance.
Rumors of a Romney run at the presidency six years ago allowed Jacob Weisberg in Slate to say shamelessly that American should not countenance a Mormon candidate because of his or her Mormonism.
Men of rugged, insouciant, determined countenance.

In science:

In this paper we present new algorithms, based on Random Matrix Theory that countenance extracting potentially useful factors in macroeconomic time series.
A Random Matrix Approach to Dynamic Factors in macroeconomic data
Vysotsky for the discussion of this letter, valuable remarks and countenance as well as S.S.
Comment on the paper "Semiclassical Dirac Theory of Tunnel Ionization" (by N.Milosevic, V.P.Krainov, and T.Brabec)
By way of comparison, (2.2) and (2.5) countenance a certain amount of error in our knowledge of the distribution.
Robustness of multiple testing procedures against dependence
However that is what will likely happen from the transformation property of the G unless the various parts carry precisely the correct dependence on M and, as stressed previously, one countenances some k2 dependence in SΓS .
A critique of the gauge technique
Most constructivists are willing to countenance certain forms of choice; and, as we will see, one seems to be compelled to use some amount of choice if one can no longer reason impredicatively.
Predicative toposes