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hair on the lower portion of the face. The term mustache refers to hair worn above the upper lip. Attitudes toward facial hair have varied in different cultures. In ancient Egypt, as well as Turkey and India, the beard was regarded as a sign of dignity and wisdom. Beards continued into the Greek civilization until the 4th cent. B.C., when Alexander the Great ordered his soldiers shaved. The Romans, however, actually introduced the practice of regular shaving. The belief that the beard denotes wisdom was widespread in ancient China, and the cult of the beard has been dominant in Middle Eastern cultures from ancient times to the recent past. As a symbol of virility and status, the beard has often acquired religious significance. Muhammad enjoined his followers to grow beards; the Sikhs of India are not permitted to remove a single hair from their bodies; and the patriarchs of the tribes of Israel were bearded. Hindus, on the other hand, have traditionally been clean-shaven. Prior to the 7th cent., most Anglo-Saxons wore beards, but with the spread of Christianity, beards were discouraged. However, since that time beards of all sizes and shapes have appeared and disappeared with the cycles of fashion. The guardsman's mustache of the 18th and early 19th cent. was the sign of an army man, and after 1830 the beard became the emblem of the French radicals. In the 20th cent. beards and mustaches were generally out of fashion until the 1960s when, together with long hair, they became popular with young people.


See R. Reynolds, Beards (1950).




1. the hair growing on the lower parts of a man's face
2. any similar growth in animals
3. a tuft of long hairs in plants such as barley and wheat; awn
4. the gills of an oyster


Beards are usually associated with masculinity, wisdom, strength; and the men who have them typically command respect. Moses, Jesus, Charles Darwin, and Abraham Lincoln all had beards. Old dream interpretation books say that dreaming of bearded men is a good omen, and good luck will follow. On the other hand, dreaming about women with beards is said to be bad luck. It’s no wonder that traditionally a woman who is strong, wise, and who commands respect was considered threatening. If you are a woman dreaming that you have a beard, you may be dealing with your own issues of power. You may be using more masculine energy than you would like to or than is necessary. Also, since beards conceal the faces of those who have them, they may symbolize negative characteristics, such as deception, extreme guardedness, or of the shadow (Bluebeard, a folktale by Charles Perrault).
References in periodicals archive ?
com and have a copy of The Beardless Adventurer and Her Inconvenience to give away.
The point of distinction is the presence or absence of the beard, for Bush and his men look young and beardless and bin Laden and his men look old with full beards (see figures 2 and 3).
BEIRUT: A beardless Fadel Shaker has emerged from hiding, renouncing the Salafist beliefs that have had the former singer on the run from the law since 2013.
However, a beardless Rick was reportedly spotted on "The Walking Dead" set.
Armed with squirrel guns and older outmoded weapons, this small company of elderly men and beardless boys acted as the city's one and only police force.
This requires a discussion of the transformation of gender beyond the simple binary of man/woman and raises such specifically Iranian issues as the amrad (a beardless youth), the farangima'ab (a Europeanized male dandy), amradnuma'i (simulation of an amrad by an older man), the fukuli (a man wearing a bow tie), and the act of shaving the beard as these interweave with questions of sexuality.
From early representations of Jesus as a young and beardless man to idealized Greco-Roman influenced imagery and the golden hues of Byzantine iconography, we emerge into the early Italian Renaissance.
Homoerotic desire was primarily conceived as an adult's desire for an adolescent, beardless youth.
CLOSE SHAVE: A now beardless Tim Howard saves from Aaron Ramsey Pictures: DAVID RAWCLIFFE/PROPAGANDA & NICK POTTS/PA
Unlike their wild cousins, farmed mussels are not sandy or gritty, and arrive practically if not entirely beardless.
Faces were shown in profile, young men generally beardless, older women heavyset.
Law" nabbed series honors; NBC actually swept the comedy nominations, since cable wasn't eligible; Fox was still a newborn, limited to programming a couple nights; Netflix, FX and CW (nee WB and UPN) didn't exist, but the financial interest and syndication rules and a robust made-for-TV movie business still did; AMC strictly aired old movies; Variety was published daily and was owned by its founding family; two of the four "Girls" stars hadn't been born; and I was beardless.