Subscribe to get full access to all our content
interactive news
Ophthalmologist Ferdinand Monoyer's 181st Birthday
Who was Ferdinand Monoyer? Some things you may not know about your eye (CCSS Level: Grade 7, Words: 399)
May 9, 2017 History
A
A
A

The method for testing how well we can see without the help of glasses hasn't changed a great deal in over a century. It follows a basic principle: read from rows of gradually shrinking letters until you're unable to distinguish the shape any more. From this, ophthalmologists can determine people's clarity of vision.

Named after its creator, Ferdinand Monoyer, the Monoyer chart was designed more than 100 years ago and was the first eye test to use a decimal system. The chart is still used today.

Born on this date in 1836, Monoyer pioneered the way we measure eyesight. He is best known for creating the Monoyer chart.

Today, on what would be Monoyer's 181st birthday, he has been honoured with a Google Doodle. "He developed the diopter, the unit of measurement for vision that's still used today," said Google. "The diopter measures the distance you'd have to be from text to read it. Most notably, Monoyer devised an eye chart where ever row represents a different diopter, from smallest to largest."

Monomer was known to change the font of a particular letter if it didn't suit him. He also inserted his name in the chart; reading vertically from bottom to top on each side of the chart, one can read his name.

Monomer grew up in Lyon in France before moving to the University of Strasbourg in 1871. He eventually returned to Lyon, were he died aged 76 in 1912. His tomb is located in the Cimetière de la Guillotière in Lyon.

In its tribute through its doodle, Google has used monomer's signature: his name in the chart.

Things you may not know about your eyes:

  • A human eye weighs approximately 28g, is 2.5cm wide and has six muscles
  • They hardly grow from the time when you're born
  • Eyes can only see the colours red, blue and green. They make all others from these three
  • They can spot around 50,000 shades of grey
  • The average blink takes one tenth of a second
  • People blink around 12 to 17 times per minute
  • It takes an eye 48 hours to heal a scratch
  • There are around 137 million rod and cone cells in your eyes
  • The muscle that controls the eye is the most active in the body
  • Images arrive at the eye upside down, split in half and distorted
  • Peripheral vision is low quality and almost black-and-white
Related Articles
Abstract Art Has Longer History Than Previously Known
Sep 13, 2018
Brazil's Museum Fire Is A Global Tragedy
Sep 6, 2018
Joël Robuchon, Michelin starred French celebrity chef, dies aged 73
Aug 7, 2018
What Actually Happened On The Original Bastille Day
Jul 13, 2018
Want To Own Your Own Town?
Jun 13, 2018
Google Doodle Celebrates American Doctor On her 109th Birthday
Jun 8, 2018
Generations Of War Blamed For Diversity Collapse 7,000 Years Ago
Jun 1, 2018
2,500-Year-Old Mummy Found In Coffin At The University Of Sydney in Australia
Mar 28, 2018
Dinosaur-era Shark With 300 Teeth, Caught Off The Coast Of Portugal
Nov 13, 2017
Notes Written By Einstein In A Tokyo Hotel In 1922 Now Worth A Fortune
Oct 26, 2017
Ancient Teeth Found in Europe Challenge Accepted Theories
Oct 25, 2017
September 7th Is National Beer Lover's Day
Sep 7, 2017
Captain Scott Left An Ancient Cake Over 100 Years Old
Aug 13, 2017
World's Oldest And Most Amazing Remaining Trees
Jun 13, 2017
Zaha Hadid - The Woman Who Reshaped Modern Architecture
Jun 1, 2017
The Best-preserved Armoured Dinosaur Ever Found
May 18, 2017
Ophthalmologist Ferdinand Monoyer's 181st Birthday
May 9, 2017
The Loch Ness Monster Is Missing
May 2, 2017
Woolly Mammoth Died Out Because Of DNA Errors
Mar 7, 2017
A Recipe For Medicinal Sweets, Written 600 Years Ago
Mar 1, 2017
2,000-Year-Old Seeds Found In Ancient Chinese Tomb
Feb 17, 2017
Massive Ancient Undersea Landslide Discovered in Australia
Feb 9, 2017
It's Friday 13th - An Unlucky Day For Some
Jan 13, 2017
South American Fossil Tomatillos Show Nightshades Evolved Earlier Than Thought
Jan 11, 2017
Winter Solstice Today - The Shortest Day Of The Year Has Arrived
Dec 21, 2016
Real Dinosaur Tail Found Preserved In Amber
Dec 13, 2016
Christie's Auction House Sells Monet Painting for $81.4 Million
Nov 18, 2016
1901 - Woman Survives Barrel Plunge Over Niagara Falls
Oct 24, 2016
Huge Dinosaur Footprint Is Possibly Largest Ever
Oct 11, 2016
Did South Americans Wear Blue Jeans?
Sep 19, 2016
This Day In History: Much Of London Destroyed In Great Fire In 1666
Sep 2, 2016
What Was Oetzi The Iceman Wearing?
Aug 23, 2016
This Week In History: First Man On The Moon
Jul 20, 2016
Voynich Manuscript
May 14, 2016
10 Phrases From Shakespeare We still Use
Apr 26, 2016
200 Years of the Bicycle
Apr 14, 2016
Famous Artworks You Should Know
Apr 13, 2016
Interesting facts about Apple
Apr 6, 2016
History of Apple
Apr 5, 2016

ac-tiv-i-ty

doing physical exercise, often moving


adj.积极/活跃/活性

aid

help


n,v.援助

ap-prox-i-mate

close to the actual


adj.大概

ap-prox-i-mate

something almost, but not completely, accurate or exact; roughly


adv.大约/左右

ba-sic

simple, beginner level


adj.基本

clar-i-ty

the quality of being clear, in particular


n.明晰/澄清

con-trol

operate a machine or equipment / the power to change or direct something


v,n.控制

con-trols

be in charge of


v.控制

de-signed

do or plan something for a reason


v.设计/计划

de-ter

discourage (someone) from doing something, usually through fear of consequences


v.阻止/吓住

de-ter-mine

cause something to happen in a certain way


v.确定/决定/下决心

de-ve-loped

cause something to grow or go into production    


v.研发

dif-fer-rent

not the same


adj.不同

di-op-ter

a refractive unit equal to the reciprocal of the focal length of a lens 


n.折光度

dis-tin-guish

recognize or treat (someone or something) as different


v.区分

e-ven-tual-ly

in the end, after a period of time


adv.最终

grad-u-al-ly

in a gradual way; slowly; by degrees


adv.逐渐

ho-noured

treat with respect


adj.荣幸

link

how one thing affects another, joined


v.链接

lo-ca-ted

find the place where something is


v.位于

mea-sures

a plan or way of doing things /  units showing size or amount


n.措施/v.测量

 

oph-thal-mo-lo-gists

eye doctors


n.眼科医生

pe-ri-phe-ral

of, relating to, or situated on the edge of something


n.外围设备

pi-o-neered

develop or be the first to use or apply (a new method, area of knowledge, or activity)


v.首创/打先锋

pre-sent

to deliver or put forward something / now, at this point in time


v,n.呈现/现在

 

qua-li-ty

how good something is


n.质量/品质

rough

having an uneven or irregular surface; not smooth or level


adj.粗暴

stem

the main body or stalk of a plant or shrub, usually rising above ground


n.干茎

tri-bute

show respect or liking for someone


n.感谢辞/礼物

vis-ion

sight, seeing


n.眼光/视力