face gaunt with anxiety

jacdac

Senior Member
Lebanese
Laura Archer entered the room, her beautiful face almost gaunt with anxiety. ‘Cat has just been bringing me up to speed on what’s happened.’
Source: Fire on the Fens by Joy Ellis

I am trying to grasp and remember the meaning of gaunty face, beyond the word description and looking at pictures.



upload_2018-6-21_2-19-38.jpeg


What makes the right picture a gaunty face? I see no sign of unwell or exhaustion.

Thank you.
 
  • Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    First, the adjective is gaunt, not "gaunty." It means thin, usually with a sense of hollowness or being wasted away. It's a negative description.

    Other than what you can learn from reading the definition and looking at pictures of gaunt people, what do you expect us to tell you?
     

    jacdac

    Senior Member
    Lebanese
    Thank you. I perceive the paleness and I appreciate it as a negative description, a sign of exhaustion or unwellness.

    As for a thin face, I do not see it as sign of unwellness. I know my face becomes thinner when I am at the best of my health. I don’t associate fatty face with good health.
     

    suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    You might not think thin is a negative concept, in itself , but gaunt MEANS negatively thin, or drawn tight with tension. Ill or worried people look gaunt without actually losing any weight.
     

    Trochfa

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    gaunt MEANS negatively thin, or drawn tight with tension. Ill or worried people look gaunt without actually losing any weight.
    :thumbsup:

    her beautiful face almost gaunt with anxiety.
    We are told what has made her almost gaunt, and that is anxiety or worry.

    Under the definition of "gaunt" you have "haggard":

    haggard:
    hag•gard /ˈhægɚd/ adj. tired or exhausted in appearance;
    worn;
    gaunt:
    The haggard faces of refugees.
    haggard - WordReference.com Dictionary of English

    In the OP I just take it to mean that she looked almost gaunt, meaning almost haggard or exhausted, from worry or concern.
     
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