Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The face or facial expression of a person; countenance.
  • n. Appearance; aspect: the bleak visage of winter.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Countenance; appearance; one's face.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The face, countenance, or look of a person or an animal; -- chiefly applied to the human face.
  • transitive v. To face.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The face, countenance, or look of a person or an animal: chiefly applied to human beings; hence, in general, appearance; aspect.
  • n. Synonyms Countenance, etc. See face.
  • To face; confront; brave.
  • To put a (certain) face upon; make (a thing) appear in a (certain) fashion.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the appearance conveyed by a person's face
  • n. the human face (`kisser' and `smiler' and `mug' are informal terms for `face' and `phiz' is British)

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from vis, from Latin vīsus, appearance, from past participle of vidēre, to see; see weid- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English, from Old French vis, from Medieval Latin as if *visaticum, from Latin visus ("a look, vision"), from videre ("to see"), past participle visus; see vision, and compare vis. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • When reading the first five-issue story arc, from the covers drawn by the Sharp Brothers to Molnar's closing image of Zeus within the pages of the first issue, it becomes quickly apparent that Zeus 'physical visage is based on Chiklis' own image.

    Michael Chiklis goes from tough cop to top god

  • These days, maintenance of the Golden Temple's exquisite visage is entrusted to one single man: 67-year-old Takesato Yagyu.

    Archive 2008-03-01

  • Alas though my visage is seen, my name is absent from the article, as I am referred to as the anonymous "Mr. Drinkwater's second".

    My first press clippings

  • I'm not exactly Stephen King -- people don't know my name, my frightening visage is not seen in the front row of Yankees/Red Sox games, and oh yeah, millions of people don't buy my books based on the byline alone -- but I get asked the above question relatively often.

    June 2006

  • To the people of the Western Hemisphere and Western Europe -- and to at least some in Asia -- the Communist visage is again what it was in 1952.

    The Significant Four Years Ahead

  • Lord, despised of man, abhorred of the nation, but before whom kings on seeing Him are to arise, and princes to worship; in visage more marred than any man and His form than the sons of men, yet sprinkling many nations; laboring seemingly in vain, and spending His strength for naught and in vain, yet Jehovah's Servant to raise up the tribes of

    Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

  • The speaker was a tall, shambling, loose-jointed man, with a long, thin visage, prominent watery blue eyes, very fluttering and seedy habiliments, who occupied the responsible position of first do-nothing-in-ordinary in our village of Oldtown, and as such I must introduce him to my readers 'notice.

    Oldtown Folks

  • Ralph looked on him and deemed he had seen him before, but could not altogether call his visage to mind; so he held his peace and the man went on.

    The Well at the World's End: a tale

  • There was so much plausibility, and, in fact, so much truth in all this, that conviction was unwillingly admitted by Borroughcliffe, who walked aside a moment to conceal the confusion which, in spite of his ordinary inflexibility of countenance, he felt was manifesting itself in his rubric visage, while he muttered:

    The Pilot

  • But now their visage is marred (as is said of Christ, Isa.lii. 14); it is blacker than a coal; they look miserably, partly through hunger and partly through grief and perplexity.

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume IV (Isaiah to Malachi)

Comments

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  • WeirdNet.

    October 13, 2008

  • Wasn't there a new romantic outfit of this name?

    June 18, 2008

  • This makes me think of Ozymandias.

    June 18, 2008

  • re the definition - has anyone actually heard the word phiz used since Dickens? (short for physiognomy)

    June 18, 2008

  • I like how severe this word sounds when said out loud.

    March 14, 2008