Nearly all visual representations of Bloom, beginning with Joyce's own pencil sketch in 1926, portray him with a mustache (one notable exception is Milo O'Shea's splendid performance in Joseph Strick's 1967 film), but one must dig long and hard in Ulysses to find any hair on the protagonist's upper lip. The universal impression has primarily been created, it would appear, by the book's references to a "moustachecup, sham crown Derby," that, according to Calypso, Milly Bloom gave her father as a birthday present: "Only five she was then. No, wait: four," an age confirmed in Ithaca. (Doubtless her mother assisted in the selection.)

JH 2017

A Royal Crown Derby moustache cup made in 1895. Source:

Proliferant mustache on Sir Henry Wellcome in 1890. Source:

The waxed look. Source: