Please Help the Blind

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Illustration of a woman hiking up her dress to fix her stocking while a man stares from the lamp post holding a sign that falsely indicates he is blind.

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An Edwardian naughty joke from the early 1900s, the illustration portrays a woman seeing a "blind" man, which gives her no accord as she lifts her skirt up to daringly show her leg. The joke is on the woman because the blind man isn’t blind, which can be inferred from his glasses, head tilt, and facial expression. Skirts in that era revealed no more than an ankle, as that was considered modest for the time. The woman’s fashion is very up to date and her silhouette has the fashionable S-bend, bodice shows the “pigeon-breasted” monobosom, and large hat is carefully pinned to sit forward on her head. Similar fashion can be seen in a 1903 Edison silent film, The Gay Shoe Clerk, whose plot similarly features a woman who gives an eyeful to an unfortunate shoe clerk.


03 The Gay Shoe Clerk (1903). (2020). Retrieved from

Catalog ID AR0445