From R. H. Blair 11 July 1871
The Commande〈r〉y, 〈Worcester〉
July 11th 1871.
My dear Sir,
I have thought a great deal about the points upon which you ask me to supply data, and find very great dificulty in arranging my remarks so as to convey any definite & reliable information.1 My 〈1 or 2 words missing〉s in upon the whole question n〈ot e〉asi〈l〉y conveyed. I am con〈 〉 of 〈 〉 that the immotions 〈of the〉 Blind have the same modes of interpretation as those of the sighted.2 That each one has its appropriated expression produced by particular contortions of the face. And that imitation has no effect whatever in the case. The expressions of the countenance, however, are more forcible in the Blind than in the sighted, for whilst that of attention to sounds is a kind of normal and almost blank 〈several words missing〉 are frequent periods 〈several words missing〉ness of face, the contr〈1 or 2 words missing〉 the more vivid when an 〈 〉 of the mind sets the face to wor〈k〉.
As for blushing, the Blind who have been so from birth, have the same use as ourselves. Such A youth will blush from fear, when he will give you the idea also of tremor, from shame, from anger, or surprise. But I cannot yet say how far down the body he will blush.3
On Thursday July 20th. we have a prize distribution 〈several words missing〉ting by Blind 〈several words missing〉 B〈l〉ind youths. If 〈you l〉ike to take Luncheon 〈with〉 the Bishop of Worcester4 & a few friends at our place the Commandery, on that day, it will be a great pleasure to us, and I believe you would gather a great deal more than I can tell. Otherwise I will write again, & more critically.5
Yours very faithfully | R. H. Blair.
Charles Darwin Esq F.R.S. &c.
Reports observations on expression in the blind; facial contortions and blushing.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7857,” accessed on 2 December 2016, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-7857