Irving's description of Crane as angular, awkward, and uncomfortable in his own skin echoes the man's sense of self: "His head was small, and flat at top, with huge ears, large green glassy eyes, and a long snipe nose, so that it looked like a weather-cock perched upon his spindle neck to tell which way the wind blew.. his clothes bagging and fluttering about him, one might have mistaken him for the genius of famine descending upon the earth, or some scarecrow eloped from a cornfield."
If you consider these physical attributes as reflections of the soul, you have all you need to know about the character of Ichabod Crane. His head was "small." In the early 1800s, a small head was indicitive of a small mind, one of the many beliefs in "phrenology," the pseudo-science of interpreting personality by examing the skull, as is the idea that his head was "flat."
Crane's "glassy eyes" indicate, properly, that he is unable to "see' clearly, both literally and symbolically. His "snipe"-like nose conveys cruelness. His neck and clothing, reminiscient of a corpse, are much like the descriptions of the dreaded Headless Horseman. Through his descriptive horrors, Irving conveys more than a ghost story: he hints, rather strongly, at a psychological abberrance; which, in part, may be attributed to the torn allegiances between the new world and the old.