(To). To sanction, to support. Approval or
disapproval is shown by the countenance. The Scripture speaks of “the
light of God's countenance,” i.e. the smile of approbation, and
to “hide His face” (or countenance) is to manifest displeasure.
“General Grant, neither at this time nor at any other, gave the least
countenance to the efforts
—Nicolay and Hay: Abraham Lincoln (vol. ix chap. ii. p.
To keep in countenance.
To encourage, or prevent one losing his countenance or feeling
dismayed. To keep one's countenance. To refrain from smiling or
expressing one's thoughts by the face.
Out of countenance.
Ashamed, confounded. With the countenance fallen or cast down.
To put one out of countenance is to make one ashamed or
disconcerted. To “discountenance” is to set your face against something
done or propounded.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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