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The origin of prescription glasses

About the origin of the prescription glasses, there are two opinions.

The first one: in the middle of the 13th century, there was a British scholar – Bacon. He saw many people’s vision were so poor that they couldn’t see the words of the book. Hence, he wanted to create a tool to help people improve eyesight. For this, he came up with a lot of methods and did a lot of experiments, but without success. One day after the rain, Bacon came into the garden for a walk and saw the cobweb with a lot of rain. And then he found that the leaf veins became larger when he saw it through the raindrop. Even he could see the fine hairs on the leaves. He was very happy after he found this phenomenon. And then, Bacon immediately ran home, and found a glass ball. However, through the glass ball, the words still were fuzzy. He took out a diamond and a hammer, and cut a piece of glass. He put this piece of glass near the book and read the words. This time, the words were enlarged. Experiment succeeded. Bacon was mad with joy. Then he took out a piece of wood, dug out a round hole on it, and put a piece of glass. At last, he set up a handle in order to make it easy to hold. Using it, it’s more convenient to write and read for people. Later, after continuous improvement, this kind of lenses became the eyeglasses which people wear now. Bacon made important contribution for human civilization progress.

The other one goes like this. The first person who thought of improving people’s vision with glasses is a scientist came from Florence. About in the A.D. 1280, he used a pair of convex lenses to correction farsightedness. However, he revealed his idea of invention to a friar who came from Pisa. Later, the friar told others how to make glasses, and also pointed out how to make glass become tortuous. In 14th century, many Italians were wearing glasses. But until the 15th century, the concave lenses which were used for correct myopia were produced. However, the glasses didn’t catch on quickly. This was mainly because the lens grinding skill didn’t get full of development. In 17th century, lens makers still had difficulty in producing good lens. At that time, microscopes and telescopes were still in development. After that, many different glasses appeared, including prescription eyeglasses, prescription sunglasses and so on.

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