2009 - 200th Birth Anniversary of Louise Braille - Proof Set

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This Post gives the details of the Proof Set. For UNC set refer to Next Post and for Hyderabad Mint UNC set refer to this post.

The Year 2009 marked the 200th Birth Anniversary of Louise Braille, and all over world there were various events to mark the occasion. In India a Proof set and UNC Set was released. Following are the details;

Louis Braille (January 4, 1809 – January 6, 1852) was the inventor of braille, a system of reading and writing used by people who are blind and visually impaired. One reads braille by passing one's fingers over characters, each of which is an arrangement of one to six embossed points. The system has been adapted for languages worldwide.
At age three, he scratched his right eye while making holes in a piece of leather with a pruning knife or awl that was too heavy for him. There was nothing anyone could do except patch and bind the affected eye. The wound became severely infected and spread to his left eye causing his blindness
In the Blind School that he joined, Children at the school were taught basic craftsman skills and simple trades. They were also taught how to read by feeling raised letters (a system devised by the school's founder, Valentin Haüy). However, because the raised letters were made using paper pressed against copper wire, the students never learned to write. Another disadvantage was that the letters weighed a lot and whenever people published books using this system, they put together a book with multiple stories in one in order to save money. This made the books sometimes weigh over a hundred pounds
In 1821, Charles Barbier, a former Captain in the French Army, visited the school. Barbier shared his invention called "night writing", a code of 12 raised dots and a number of dashes that let soldiers share top-secret information on the battlefield without having to speak
Louis Braille began to invent his raised-dot system with his father's stitching awl, the same implement with which he had blinded himself, completing it at age 15, in 1824. Rather than 12 raised dots used in Barbier, his system uses only six dots, possibly influenced by wooden dice his father had given to him. Braille's new system had several advantages. The six-dot system allows the recognition of letters with a single fingertip, which enables comprehension of all the dots at once with no movement or repositioning of fingers that slows understanding in systems requiring more dots. The dots are organized into patterns that keep the system easy to learn. The Braille system also offers numerous benefits over Haüy's raised letter method, the most notable being the ability to both read and write an alphabet. Another very notable benefit is that because they were dots just slightly raised, volumes of text could be smaller, lighter, and easier to produce.
Braille later extended his system to include notation for mathematics and music. In 1829, he published the first book about his system, entitled Method of Writing Words, Music, and Plain Songs by Means of Dots, for Use by the Blind and Arranged for Them. This book was printed by using the raised letter method (“relief linéaire” in French). In 1839 he published details of a method he had developed for communication with sighted people, using patterns of dots to approximate the shape of printed symbols. With his friend Pierre Foucault, he went on to develop a Braille typewriter to speed up the somewhat cumbersome system.
He died in Paris of tuberculosis in 1852 at the age of 43, and was buried in Coupvray. His body was disinterred at the centenary of his death in 1952 and he was reinterred with honors in the Panthéon in Paris. His system was finally officially recognized in France two years after his death, in 1854.
The 200th anniversary of his birth in 2009 was widely celebrated throughout Europe by exhibitions and symposiums about life and achievements. Belgium and Italy struck 2 euro coins, India struck a 2 rupee coin, and the USA struck a one dollar coin to mark the event.

Release Function

The Speaker, Lok Sabha, Shri Somnath Chatterjee releasing a Commemorative Coin to Commemorate on the occasion of the National function to mark the Birth Bicentenary of Louis Braille, in New Delhi on January 4, 2009. The Union Minister for Social justice & Empowerment, Smt. Meira Kumar and the Minister of State for Finance, Shri Pawan Kumar Bansal are also seen in the picture. P D Photo by Dinesh Kumar

Proof Set: Coins of Rs 100 and Rs 2

Lousie Braille - The Coins of Rs 100 and Rs 2

Proof Set: Single Coin of Rs 2

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