BRUEGEL, Pieter the Elder
(b. ca. 1525, Brogel, d. 1569, Brussel)

The Parable of the Blind Leading the Blind (detail)

Tempera on canvas
Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte, Naples

Blind people roamed the country in groups begging; they were part of the street scene. Bruegel has painted them with no trace of sympathy, but so accurately that it is possible for doctors today to diagnose the various eye disorders or the causes of blindness: the man on the left is suffering from leucoma of the cornea (so-called "wall-eye"), and the one on the right from amaurosis.