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They be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.
- Bible, Matthew (ch. XV, v. 14)
Ye have a world of light,
When love in the loved rejoices;
But the blind man's home is the house of night,
And its beings are empty voices.
- Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton
Oh, say! what is that thing call'd light,
Which I must ne'er enjoy?
What are the blessings of the sight?
Oh, tell your poor blind boy!
- Colley Cibber, The Blind Boy
O happiness of blindness! now no beauty
Inflames my lust; no other's goods my envy,
Or misery my pity; no man's wealth
Draws my respect; nor poverty my scorn,
Yet still I see enough! man to himself
Is a large prospect, raised above the level
Of his low creeping thoughts; if then I have
A world within myself, that world shall be
My empire; there I'll reign, commanding freely,
And willingly obey'd, secure from fear
Of foreign forces, or domestic treasons.
- Sir John Denham
You cannot see the mountain near.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
None so blind as those that will not see.
- Matthew (Mathew) Henry, Commentaries
Dispel this cloud, the light of heaven restore;
Give me to see, and Ajax asks no more.
- Homer ("Smyrns of Chios"), The Iliad
(bk. XVII, l. 730), (Pope's translation)
He does not weep who does not see.
- Victor Hugo
My darkness has been filled with the light of intelligence, and behold, the outer day-lit world was stumbling and groping in social blindness.
- Helen Adams Keller
The blindness of men is the most dangerous effect of their pride; it seems to nourish and augment it; it deprives them of knowledge of remedies which can solace their miseries and can cure their faults.
- Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld
O loss of sight, of thee I most complain!
Blind among enemies, O worse than chains,
Dungeon, or beggary, or decrepit age!
- John Milton, Samson Agonistes (l. 67)
O dark, dark, dark, amid the blaze of noon,
Irrecoverably dark, total eclipse
Without all hope of day!
- John Milton, Samson Agonistes (l. 80)
These eyes, tho' clear
To outward view of blemish or of spot,
Bereft of light, their seeing have forgot,
Nor to their idle orbs doth sight appear
Of sun, or moon, or star, throughout the year,
Or man, or woman. Yet I argue not
Against Heaven's hand or will, not bate a jot
Of heart or hope; but still bear up and steer
- John Milton, Sonnet XXII (l. 1)
I have only one eye,--I have a right to be blind sometimes . . . I really do not see the signal!
- Lord Horatio Nelson, Viscount Nelson,
Life of Nelson (ch. 7),
at the battle of Copenhagen
He whom nature thus bereaves,
Is ever fancy's favourite child;
For thee enchanted dreams she weaves
Of changeful beauty, bright and wild.
- Frances Sargent Osgood
Blessed are the blind, for they know not enough to ask why.
- Joseph Ernest Renan
He that is strucken blind cannot forget
The precious treasure of his eyesight lost.
- William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
(Romeo at I, i)
This fellow must have a rare understanding;
For nature recompenseth the defects
Of one part with redundance in another;
Blind men have excellent memories, and the tongue
Thus indisposed, there's treasure in the intellect.
- James Shirley
There's none so blind as they that won't see.
- Jonathan Swift, Polite Conversation
Just because a man lacks the use of his eyes doesn't mean he lacks vision.
- Stevie Wonder
And when a damp
Fell round the path of Milton, in his hand
The Thing became a trumpet; whence he blew
Soul-animating strains--alas! too few.
- William Wordsworth,
Miscellaneous Sonnets, Pt. II, Scorn Not the Sonnet; Critic, You Have Frowned
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