The noun countenance means the face or its expression. If you're a great poker player, you probably have a calm countenance.

Countenance comes from a French word for "behavior," but it has become a fancy term for either the expression of a face or the face itself: "He had a puzzled countenance," or "what a charming countenance!" Countenance can also be a verb meaning to tolerate or approve. If someone does something offensive, tell them, "I'm afraid I can't countenance that."

Primary Meanings of countenance

the appearance conveyed by a person's face
consent to, give permission
formal and explicit approval
Full Definitions of countenance

n the appearance conveyed by a person's face

“a pleasant countenance
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aspect, expression, face, facial expression, look
the feelings expressed on a person's face
poker face
a face without any interpretable expression (as that of a good poker player)
a suggestive or sneering look or grin
light, spark, sparkle, twinkle
merriment expressed by a brightness or gleam or animation of countenance
Type of:
appearance, visual aspect
outward or visible aspect of a person or thing

n the human face (`kisser' and `smiler' and `mug' are informal terms for `face' and `phiz' is British)

kisser, mug, phiz, physiognomy, smiler, visage
pudding face, pudding-face
a large fat human face
Type of:
face, human face
the front of the human head from the forehead to the chin and ear to ear

v consent to, give permission

allow, let, permit
allow, grant
let have
disallow, forbid, interdict, nix, prohibit, proscribe, veto
command against
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abide, bear, brook, digest, endure, put up, stand, stick out, stomach, suffer, support, tolerate
put up with something or somebody unpleasant
grant a leave to
allow to have or take
allow, permit, tolerate
allow the presence of or allow (an activity) without opposing or prohibiting
authorise, authorize, clear, pass
grant authorization or clearance for
admit, include, let in
allow participation in or the right to be part of; permit to exercise the rights, functions, and responsibilities of
favor, favour, privilege
bestow a privilege upon
decriminalise, decriminalize, legalise, legalize, legitimate, legitimatise, legitimatize, legitimise, legitimize
make legal
allow without fear
admit, allow in, intromit, let in
allow to enter; grant entry to
accept, live with, swallow
tolerate or accommodate oneself to
hold still for, stand for
tolerate or bear
bear up
endure cheerfully
take lying down
suffer without protest; suffer or endure passively
take a joke
listen to a joke at one's own expense
sit out
endure to the end
bear (a cost or penalty), in recompense for some action
approve or sanction officially
authorize by certificate
O.K., approve, okay, sanction
give sanction to
induct, initiate
accept people into an exclusive society or group, usually with some rite
admit again or anew
authorize payments of
certify, licence, license
authorize officially
charge with a task
formalise, formalize, validate
declare or make legally valid
monetise, monetize
give legal value to or establish as the legal tender of a country
admit back into the country
admit anew
engage as a participant
Type of:
accept, consent, go for
give an affirmative reply to; respond favorably to

n formal and explicit approval

endorsement, imprimatur, indorsement, sanction, warrant
O.K., OK, okay, okeh, okey
an endorsement
an endorsement made in a passport that allows the bearer to enter the country issuing it
nihil obstat
the phrase used by the official censor of the Roman Catholic Church to say that a publication has been examined and contains nothing offensive to the church
Type of:
approval, commendation
a message expressing a favorable opinion

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