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Top 10 Fascinating Facts About Braille

Top 10 Fascinating Facts About Braille


Braille is a silent symphony of communication where language is unfolded not through spoken words but with the delicate presence of raised dots. Since its invention, Braille has empowered millions of blind individuals with a unique way of reading and writing.

But in this digitally dominated world, the brilliance of this tactile system is often overlooked. Hence, in this blog, we will delve into the beauty of Braille and discuss ten brilliant facts about this remarkable system that transcends the barriers of sight and discovers a new world of learning for the visually impaired.

1.    Forms of Braille

Uncontracted and Contracted Braille

There are two popular forms of Braille – uncontracted and contracted. The uncontracted or grade-1 Braille is a letter-by-letter translation of the printed materials. In this case, every letter is presented on the braille sheet individually. This is regarded as the first step in learning braille. At the same time, the contracted Braille is followed by experienced users. It shortens a number of common words and uses extra signs frequently.

2.    Learning Braille at any age

Kid and Old lady reading braille

The key advantage of Braille is it can be learned at any age. There are majority of individuals who have experienced vision loss, typically in the later stages of life, can also learn and write Braille. A misbelief regarding Braille exists that learning braille can be challenging for adult people. But contrary to this, many individuals have successfully learned Braille in their later life.

3.    Braille is not a language

Braille is not a language

Another misconception regarding Braille that should be considered is it is not a language. It is a tactile form of reading and writing codes that represents alphabets, numbers, and punctuations. This code serves as a method of translation for blind individuals, helping them understand the learning elements that we can visualize. There are braille versions of many languages, including Hebrew, Arabic, Chinese, English, and Arabic.

The uncontracted form aligns with the language it translates, representing each character individually. Early in the 1990s, Standard English Braille (SEB) and English Braille American Edition (EBAE), two disparate codes, were superseded by United English Braille (UEB), a single code. Today, UEB is the norm in all English-speaking nations. The evolution of UEB is explained on the ICEB website.

4.    The books of Braille are massive

Massive braille books

The printed versions of braille code occupy a huge amount of space on a page. The portability and practicality of the braille books possess some challenges. Therefore, using portable electronic Braille displays or listening to audiobooks via specialized applications are more practical options for reading while on the go.

By addressing the spatial limitations of conventional Braille texts, this method gives people with visual impairments a more flexible and manageable way to access information.

5.    This is not always read on paper.

Various Options of Braille

In recent times, various options are available to read Braille. Many blind individuals prefer an electronic display when reading any electronic document or any website. A single row of braille cells with round-tipped buttons that rise and fall beneath a flat surface makes up a typical braille display. These pins alter to represent and show different braille alphabet characters on the line that is being read.

6.    Few terminologies

Braille cells and dots

A few terminologies that are popular in learning Braille are –

  • Cell: Individual braille characters are represented by a cell
  • Dots: A cell contains six dots
  • Dots are usually arranged in a unique way to represent the letters and are raised on each page.
  • The characters are read by moving the fingertips from the left side to the right.
  • Individuals use both of their hands to read the braille characters. One hand is used to read while the other one helps in maintaining the line.

7.    Not every blind person can read Braille

Not every blind person can read Braille

Though Braille is a popular method of reading and learning, not everyone can read or is able to adopt this technique. People with certain other difficulties besides blindness may face some challenges while learning Braille. Also, not all blind individuals are able to put that amount of effort into learning this tactile form of language.

8.    Braille codes

Braille codes

Two different braille codes are available for mathematics and music. For math and science, the Nemeth braille code is followed, which includes fractions, geometry, signs, and numbers. Whereas, in braille music, the codes are used to help the blind individuals with musical notations.

9.    Braille in Other Languages

Braille in Other Languages

A question can arise in your mind if Braille is the same in every language or not. The answer is both yes and no. While the basic principle is constant, a few adaptations are made to overcome the linguistic barriers. This approach has made Braille a global tool and is employed in various languages.

10. Legacy of the Founder

Louis Braille

This system, which bears Louis Braille’s name, has a lengthy history. At the age of 15, blind Frenchman Louis Braille created the Braille system in 1824. His creativity and perseverance resulted in the creation of an initiative that has since changed the lives of numerous individuals by removing obstacles and promoting inclusivity.


In conclusion, millions of lives have been changed by the brilliant, flexible, and inclusive Braille system. It is more than just a collection of raised dots. For people with visual impairments, Braille remains a symbol of independence, literacy, and community despite its historical origins and global reach. Let us honor the remarkable achievements of Braille and acknowledge its ongoing impact on fostering greater inclusivity in society. Visit Braille Music and More to learn the Braille music code.

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