The Guardian’s list of 10 best beards in literature, featuring the most impressive beards in fiction and poetry, got me to thinking about the great writers and their beards. Here, in no particular order, are a few of the best.
I’ve not read much if any of his poetry but his beard of biblical proportions makes me want to. This is exactly the kind of beard you want at the end of your life, something that makes you look as old as time itself.
The giants of Russian literature have some of the greatest beards and few are greater than Dostoevsky’s classic tongue of bristle.
I don’t know whether it’s the gravitas of Chekhov’s expression or the pince-nez that give Chekhov’s beard its elegance but you can’t argue with the authority of this look.
Papa’s beard matches his overtly masculine image. He famously bragged that he could out-fight, fuck, fish, write, or hunt any other man alive. Apparently he could out-beard most men too.
Though not nearly nonsensical enough, Edward Lear’s beard is clearly well groomed.
Lawrences beard almost looks fake in this photo.
One of the few contemporary writers to sport a beard. Surprised by how much Coetzee looks like Clint Eastwood.
Ginsberg’s is easily one of the best beards ever to grace a literary chin.
Dickens’ beard seems designed for stroking.
Count Lyev Nikolayevich Tolstoy
Tolstoy’s beard has to be the ultimate literary beard though. So good I had to include two photos from its lengthy lifespan.
12 Responses to The best writers’ beards.
Best post of the year so far, mister. In my opinion. You’ve got me thinking of growing mine back now!
Glad you liked it. It was a lot of fun trawling the interent for decent bearded writer’s chins.
No William Empson, no credibility.
I’m not familiar with Empson’s work, but having googled his image he has indeed sported one of the finest literary beards. Might update and add him into the post.
Anyone else have any suggestions for additions to this collection of literary face fur?
Well, there’s Nicholson Baker.
Another good call.
Take a look at Rabindranath Tagore, India’s literary Nobel laureate
How about Henrik Ibsen?
Another couple of corkers. Getting to have enough to post another collection of literary beards.
you want literary beards? Now, THESE are beards…
I’m also bearded, but much less impressively.
Thanks for those Andy. The various Robertson Davies beards are impressive. Like you I am much less impressively bearded but if I work hard hard I hope to one day have a literary beard worth posting.
@ All Readers and Commenters: I’ll be doing a collection of the suggestions over the weekend.
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