Encyclopedia of Color Science and Technology

Living Edition
| Editors: Renzo Shamey

Blind Spot

  • Jonathan AboshihaEmail author
Living reference work entry

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27851-8_274-3



Blind spot is the name given to the scotomatous area of each eye’s visual field that lacks visual input, due to the photoreceptor-free region of the retina where the optic nerve exits the eye.


The phenomenon of the blind spot was first described in 1668 by the French Roman Catholic priest and scientist Edme Mariotte, who used small circles of white paper to locate the region of visual space in which they disappeared [ 1]. Prior to this discovery, the role of the optic disc was not clear, and scientists such as Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519) had thought that the visual image actually fell only on the head of the optic nerve itself [ 2]. The vertically oval area of the blind spot subtends about 5 × 7° of visual angle and corresponds to the projection in visual space of the optic nerve head, which has average vertical and horizontal disc diameters of 1.88 and 1.77 mm, respectively [ 3]. The physiological blind spot is centered...
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© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and Moorfields Eye HospitalLondonUK

Section editors and affiliations

  • Rolf G. Kuehni
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Color ScienceNC State UniversityRaleighUSA
  2. 2.Color Research & ApplicationPennsvilleUSA