A man suffering from myopia with glasses in the Middle Ages

A man suffering from myopia with glasses in the Middle Ages

The fact that the term myopia derives from the greek “myopos”, or “he who closes his eyes“, referring typical habit of those affected squeezing his eyes in an attempt to see a little’ better, attests how widespread was, even in antiquity, This eye condition, which essentially it consists in the difficulty to focus on distant objects.

Today we can only imagine how hard should be the life of the short-sighted in the past, seen that this common defect of sight He was not at all taken care of: Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, as sophisticated and able to carry out transactions in the eyes of some complexity, for example to remove the cataract, as attested by some sources in our possession, nothing could for myopia, nor for presbyopia, poor near vision.

The first corrective lenses They began to make their appearance only in full Middle Ages, precisely At the beginning of 1300, in Italy, but only for presbyopia.

Short-sighted people had to wait more than a century for the chance to correct his disorder, when at last, in 1450, Cardinal and German intellectual Nicholas of Cusa (1401-1464) invented the concave lens.

Among the first users and fans of the miraculous discovery there was Papa Leone X, highly myopic as most of the members of the family to which he belonged, i Medici. (photo: www.mda-arte.blogspot.com)