First Name
in the U.S.
since 1880
Last Name
in the U.S.
in 2010
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Meaning and Origin

What does the name Face mean? Find out below.

Origin and Meaning of Face

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Webster's Unabridged Dictionary
noun Face
  1. The exterior form or appearance of anything; that part which presents itself to the view; especially, the front or upper part or surface; that which particularly offers itself to the view of a spectator."A mist . . . watered the whole face of the ground." [Gen. ii. 6.]"Lake Leman wooes me with its crystal face." [Byron.]
  2. That part of a body, having several sides, which may be seen from one point, or which is presented toward a certain direction; one of the bounding planes of a solid; as, a cube has six faces .
  3. [Mach]
    1. The principal dressed surface of a plate, disk, or pulley; the principal flat surface of a part or object.
    2. That part of the acting surface of a cog in a cog wheel, which projects beyond the pitch line.
    3. The width of a pulley, or the length of a cog from end to end; as, a pulley or cog wheel of ten inches face .
  4. [Print]
    1. The upper surface, or the character upon the surface, of a type, plate, etc.
    2. The style or cut of a type or font of type.
  5. Outside appearance; surface show; look; external aspect, whether natural, assumed, or acquired."To set a face upon their own malignant design." [Milton.]"This would produce a new face of things in Europe." [Addison.]"We wear a face of joy, because We have been glad of yore." [Wordsworth.]
  6. That part of the head, esp. of man, in which the eyes, cheeks, nose, and mouth are situated; visage; countenance."In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread." [Gen. iii. 19.]
  7. Cast of features; expression of countenance; look; air; appearance."We set the best faceon it we could." [Dryden.]
  8. [Astrol] Ten degrees in extent of a sign of the zodiac.
  9. Maintenance of the countenance free from abashment or confusion; confidence; boldness; shamelessness; effrontery."This is the man that has the face to charge others with false citations." [Tillotson.]
  10. Presence; sight; front; as in the phrases, before the face of, in the immediate presence of; in the face of, before, in, or against the front of; as, to fly in the face of danger; to the face of, directly to; from the face of, from the presence of.
  11. Mode of regard, whether favorable or unfavorable; favor or anger; mostly in Scriptural phrases."The Lord make his face to shine upon thee." [Num. vi. 25.]"My facefavor] will I turn also from them." [Ezek. vii. 22.]
  12. [Mining] The end or wall of the tunnel, drift, or excavation, at which work is progressing or was last done.
  13. [Com] The exact amount expressed on a bill, note, bond, or other mercantile paper, without any addition for interest or reduction for discount; most commonly called face value.

Note: Face is used either adjectively or as part of a compound; as, face guard or face-guard; face cloth; face plan or face-plan; face hammer.

Etymology: F., from L. facies form, shape, face, perh. from facere to make (see Fact); or perh. orig. meaning appearance, and from a root meaning to shine, and akin to E. fancy. Cf. Facetious

verb Face
  1. To meet in front; to oppose with firmness; to resist, or to meet for the purpose of stopping or opposing; to confront; to encounter; as, to face an enemy in the field of battle."I'll face This tempest, and deserve the name of king." [Dryden.]
  2. To Confront impudently; to bully."I will neither be facednor braved." [Shak.]
  3. To stand opposite to; to stand with the face or front toward; to front upon; as, the apartments of the general faced the park; some of the seats on the train faced backward."He gained also with his forces that part of Britain which faces Ireland." [Milton.]
  4. To cover in front, for ornament, protection, etc.; to put a facing upon; as, a building faced with marble.
  5. To line near the edge, esp. with a different material; as, to face the front of a coat, or the bottom of a dress.
  6. To cover with better, or better appearing, material than the mass consists of, for purpose of deception, as the surface of a box of tea, a barrel of sugar, etc.
  7. [Mach] To make the surface of (anything) flat or smooth; to dress the face of (a stone, a casting, etc.); esp., in turning, to shape or smooth the flat surface of, as distinguished from the cylindrical surface.
  8. To cause to turn or present a face or front, as in a particular direction.
verb Face
  1. To carry a false appearance; to play the hypocrite."To lie, to face, to forge." [Spenser.]
  2. To turn the face; as, to face to the right or left." Face about, man; a soldier, and afraid!" [Dryden.]
  3. To present a face or front.
Other Dictionary Sources
  1. A vertical surface of a building or cliff
  2. The side upon which the use of a thing depends (usually the most prominent surface of an object) ("he dealt the cards face down")
  3. The striking or working surface of an implement
  4. The general outward appearance of something ("the face of the city is changing")
  5. The feelings expressed on a person's face ("an angry face")
  6. Impudent aggressiveness
  7. Status in the eyes of others ("he lost face")
  8. The front of the human head from the forehead to the chin and ear to ear ("he washed his face" and "I wish I had seen the look on his face when he got the news")
  9. The part of an animal corresponding to the human face
  10. A specific size and style of type within a type family
  11. A contorted facial expression
  12. A surface forming part of the outside of an object ("dew dripped from the face of the leaf" and "they travelled across the face of the continent")
  13. A part of a person that is used to refer to a person ("he looked out at a roomful of faces" and "when he returned to work he met many new faces")
  14. Deal with (something unpleasant) head on ("He faced the terrible consequences of his mistakes")
  15. Present somebody with something, usually to accuse or criticize ("He was faced with all the evidence and could no longer deny his actions" and "An enormous dilemma faces us")
  16. Oppose, as in hostility or a competition ("Jackson faced Smith in the boxing ring")
  17. Cover the front or surface of ("The building was faced with beautiful stones")
  18. Line the edge (of a garment) with a different material ("face the lapels of the jacket")
  19. Turn so as to face; turn the face in a certain direction ("Turn and face your partner now")
  20. Turn so as to expose the face ("face a playing card")
  21. Be oriented in a certain direction, often with respect to another reference point; be opposite to ("The building faces the park")
  22. Be opposite ("the two sofas face each other")

From Middle English face, from Old French face, from Vulgar Latin *facia, from Latin faciēs (“form, appearance”), from facere (“to make, do”). Displaced native Middle English onlete (“face, countenance, appearance”), anleth (“face”), from Old English anwlite, andwlita, compare German Antlitz; Old English ansīen (“face”), Middle English neb (“face, nose”) (from Old English nebb), Middle English ler, leor, leer (“face, cheek, countenance”) (from Old English hlēor), and non-native Middle English vis (“face, appearance, look”) (from Old French vis).

  1. (anatomy) The front part of the head, featuring the eyes, nose, and mouth and the surrounding area.
    The monkey has a pretty .
  2. One's facial expression.
    Why the sad ?
  3. The public image; outward appearance.
    The of this company.  He managed to show a bold despite his embarrassment.
  4. The frontal aspect of something.
    The of the cliff loomed above them.
  5. (figuratively) Presence; sight; front.
    to fly in the of danger;  to speak before the of God
  6. The directed force of something.
    They turned to boat into the of the storm.
  7. Good reputation; standing in the eyes of others; dignity; prestige. (See , ).
  8. Shameless confidence; boldness; effrontery.
  9. The width of a pulley, or the length of a cog from end to end.
    a pulley or cog wheel of ten inches
  10. (geometry) Any of the flat bounding surfaces of a polyhedron. More generally, any of the bounding pieces of a polytope of any dimension.
  11. Any surface; especially a front or outer one.
    Put a big sign on each of the building that can be seen from the road.  They climbed the north of the mountain.  She wanted to wipe him off the of the earth.
  12. The numbered dial of a clock or watch, the clock face.
  13. (slang) The mouth.
    Shut your !  He's always stuffing his with chips.
  14. (slang) Makeup; one's complete facial cosmetic application.
    I'll be out in a sec. Just let me put on my .
  15. (slang, professional wrestling) Short for baby face. A wrestler whose on-ring persona is embodying heroic or virtuous traits.
    The fans cheered on the as he made his comeback.
  16. (cricket) The front surface of a bat.
  17. (golf) The part of a golf club that hits the ball.
  18. (card games) The side of the card that shows its value (as opposed to the back side, which looks the same on all cards of the deck).
  19. (heraldry) The head of a lion, shown face-on and cut off immediately behind the ears.
  20. (typography) A typeface.
  21. Mode of regard, whether favourable or unfavourable; favour or anger.
  22. (computing) An interface.
  23. The amount expressed on a bill, note, bond, etc., without any interest or discount; face value.

face was also found in the following language(s): French, Friulian, Interlingua, Italian, Latin, Middle English, Old French, Portuguese, and Romanian

Notable Persons With the Last Name Face

Radical Face is a folk music and electronic music musician. He was most active from 2000 to 2000. Radical was born in Jacksonville, Florida. Radical is also known as Radical Face.


Neck Face is an artist.


Roy Face is a baseball player. Roy was born on February 20th, 1928 in Stephentown, New York.


Richard Face is an NSW Minister for Gaming, Racing, and Minister Assisting the Premier on Hunter Development. His most notable accomplishments were from 1995 to 2003. Richard was given the name Jack Richard Face on December 2nd, 1942 in Merewether, New South Wales, Australia.


Charmaine White Face is an Oglala Lakota elder and Oglala Lakotaelder. Charmaine was born in Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.


Samuel was born on August 2nd, 1923. He passed away on May 2nd, 2001.


Where is the name Face popular?

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Popularity of Face as a last name

The map shows the absolute popularity of the name Face as a last name in each of the states. See other popular names in Michigan, New York, or California.

Ethnicity Distribution

Ethnicity Face U.S.
  White 90.89% 64.26%
  African American 1.78% 11.96%
  Asian, Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander 0.00% 4.85%
  American Indian and Alaska Native 0.00% 0.69%
  Two or More Ethnicities 1.56% 1.76%
  Hispanic or Latino 4.44% 16.26%

Of Last Name Face

People with the last name Face are most frequently White

Entire United States

Fun Facts about the name Face

  • How Popular is the name Face? As a last name Face was the 47,186th most popular name in 2010.
  • How unique is the name Face? Out of 5,933,561 records in the U.S. Social Security Administration public data, the first name Face was not present. It is possible the name you are searching has less than five occurrences per year.
  • Weird things about the name Face: Your name in reverse order is Ecaf. A random rearrangement of the letters in your name (anagram) will give Eacf. How do you pronounce that?
  • How many people have the last name Face? In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau surveyed 450 people with the last name Face.
  • How likely are you to meet someone with the last name of Face? Chances are, most people haven't met someone with Face as their last name since less than 1 person in 667k people have that last name. If you know one, consider yourself lucky!

What Faces Have Visited This Page?

Name poster for Face

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  • Sources:
  • U.S. Census Bureau: Frequently Occurring Surnames from the Census 2000 (public domain).
  • 1913 Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary via the Collaborative International Dictionary of English (License)
  • Other Dictionary Sources: WordNet 3.1 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University (License).
  • Wiktionary: Titles and License.
  • Notable persons via Wikipedia: Titles and License. Click each image for the attribution information.