He was a small man, and sensitive on that score. His friends noticed the fine expression of his countenance when animated. He was negligent of his dress and somewhat abstracted. He wrote rapidly, and was ready in conversation, with playful repartee. His biographer, in the last edition of his poems, gives an instance of his wit. A preacher had come to New London, and labored heavily through a discourse, complaining all this time that his "wind was imprisoned." When this difficulty was urged in defence of his dulness Brainard would not allow it, since "the preacher's mind might easily have sworn out."