In Reminiscences of Conrad (1924), novelist John Galsworthy recalls seeing Conrad for the first time, when Conrad was 36:

It was in March, 1893, that I first met Conrad on board the English sailing ship "Torrens" in Adelaide Harbour. He was superintending the stowage of cargo. Very dark he looked in the burning sunlight--tanned, with a peaked brown beard, almost black hair, and dark-brown eyes, over which the lids were deeply folded. He was thin, not tall, his arms very long, his shoulders broad, his head set rather forward.

He was a good seaman, watchful of the weather, quick in handling the ship; considerate with the apprentices. . . . With the crew he was popular; they were individuals to him, not a mere gang.

A later picture of Conrad is given by Scottish author and politician R. B. Cunninghame Graham in Inventi Portum (1927):

His nose was aquiline, his eyes most luminous and full. It seemed his very soul looked out of them, piercing the thoughts of those whom he addressed; his beard, trimmed to a point, was flecked with grey a little and his moustache was full.


Victorian Web Joseph Conrad

Last modified 4 December 2000