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.
physiognomy phys·i·og·no·my (fĭz'ē-ŏg'nə-mē, -ŏn'ə-mē)
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.