Home >  Term: physiognomy

Physiognomy is the assessment of a person's character or personality from his or her outer appearance, especially the face. The term can also refer to the general appearance of a person, object, or terrain, without reference to its implied characteristics, as in the physiognomy of a plant community.

The term was gathered from the Greek physis meaning "nature" and gnomon meaning "judge" or "interpreter".

There are no clear evidences that physiognomy works, though recent studies have suggested that facial appearances do "contain a kernel of truth" about a person's personality.

Physiognomy is also sometimes referred to as anthroposcopy, though the expression was more common in the 19th century when the word originated.

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