Blind Boy, Waltham Abbey

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As a historian I have seen lots of memorials in churches in Britain and Europe, but this is very unusual if not unique. Tudor monuments show effigies of the parents recumbent above a representation of their children praying for them, the males on the left, females on the right. But on the left here is a short haired character – presumably a son, with its arm through that of his sister who was probably his twin. This has to be a depiction of a blind boy, but this begs the question as to how common blindness was in the past, and why it seems not to have been shown. Was blindness ignored in effigies or were blind people invisible?

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4 thoughts on “Blind Boy, Waltham Abbey

    • Blindness is mentioned in the Bible, so must have been noteworthy then I guess it dates back to any human records. I suspect it is rarer now with improved nutrition and healthcare, at least where such things have improved.

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