Catherine's hair, and Henry's beard (grown in Book 5), symbolize Catherine and Henry's temporary insulation from the world. Early in their relationship, Henry loves to remove Catherine's hairpins so her hair surrounds him, like being "inside a tent or behind a falls," both images of shelter and protection. When Henry and Catherine are living an isolated life in Switzerland, Henry's beard grows longer, an implied layer of defense.
Hair and Beards Symbol Timeline in A Farewell to Arms
The timeline below shows where the symbol Hair and Beards appears in A Farewell to Arms. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
...him to the British hospital to meet Catherine Barkley. Catherine is beautiful, with long blonde hair, and she and Henry begin flirting as soon as they're introduced. At one point, Henry... (full context)