Not sure how this works exactly. I'm not completely new to WP but never was too clear on redirects and disambiguation. My question goes like this: How do I correctly add whole new definitions to this word when it seems unlikely that any of these are truely notable?
Yes, the word does mean "line" in the geometric sense as can be seen in the writings of 16th century mathematician John Dee in his work The Mathematicall Praeface to Elements of Geometrie of Euclid of Megara:
The whole Feate of Architecture in buildyng, consisteth in Lineamentes, and in Framyng. And the whole power and skill of Lineamentes, tendeth to this: that the right and absolute way may be had, of Coaptyng and ioyning Lines and angles: by which, the face of the buildyng or frame, may be comprehended and concluded. And it is the property of Lineamentes, to prescribe vnto buildynges, and euery part of them, an apt place, & certaine nũber: a worthy maner, and a semely order: that, so, ye whole forme and figure of the buildyng, may rest in the very Lineamentes. &c. And we may prescribe in mynde and imagination the whole formes, all material stuffe beyng secluded. Which point we shall atteyne, by Notyng and forepointyng the angles, and lines, by a sure and certaine direction and connexion. Seyng then, these thinges, are thus: What, Lineament is. Lineamente, shalbe the certaine and constant prescribyng, conceiued in mynde: made in lines and angles: and finished with a learned minde and wyt.
Beyond this scientific usage however are two more definitions/usages:
The first of these definitions is one which defines lineaments as characteristics of a face and/or body. See the examples of usage at the wordnik.com website here. In this usage of the word we can see that the connection between geometric lines and facial geometry leads to an emotional interpretation commonly called "reading faces" and "body language". One of the leading researchers in this field is psychologist Paul Ekman and his work on FACS.
The second of these definitions is one which seems to evolve into a purely abstract usage relating to characteristics of objects, places, and people which has nothing to do with geometry of any kind but rather is synonymous with words like "trait", "quality", "peculiarity" and "nature of". It seems to be tied to unique characteristics and may possibly thus be related to certain common usages of the etymologically linked word delineate as in "to set apart".
I am looking for a citation for this latter definition but so far other than a number of book titles and quotations (see below) I cannot find an actual reliable dictionary definition that does not involve either mathematics or physiology (this source comes close). I will keep looking.
Finally, in looking for the above mentioned citations I discovered that this word has yet another meaning, this one closer to home as it does have to do with math and lines, related to the science of geology. It seems to be used extensively in the literature. I do not even begin to claim any understanding of this science and so I leave it to competent geologists here at WP to develop that entry.
- A few examples of usage as mentioned above:
- "lineaments of Nature" - Wm. Shakespeare, As You Like It
- "lineaments, of manners and of spirit" - Wm. Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice
- "Lineaments of a Young Republic" - Allan Nevins
- "Lineaments of Wrath" - James W. Clarke
- "Lineaments of Leadership" - James MacGregor Burns