In 1812 a
three-year-old French boy, Louis Braille, became blind. He attended
the National School for the Blind and learned to read large raised
letters. At the same time Captain Charles Barbie developed a code for
night time military communications using raised dots.
At 15 Braille combined the two ideas and created his
own raised-dot system of writing. “Braille cells” are two dots wide
and three dots high, and represent 63 different letters and symbols.
This form of writing for the blind has been adopted to many different
alphabets, including Hebrew on these stamps. The individual signs
represent the letters, from left to right, j-s-r-a-l. On the stamp the
Braille letters are raised.
The stamp embossed with Braille issued in
1989 commemorated Valentin Hauy (1745-1822), the founder of the Paris
School for the Blind in 1791. The braille on the stamp reads
“Valentin Hauy (1745-1822) widely regarded as the father of modern
education for the blind.”
In 2005 South Africa issued a stamp with
raised Braille lettering spelling the word Hello. The Braille
includes the sign for a capital letter as the first letter.