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Article
November 1938

DETERMINATION AND SIGNIFICANCE OF THE SCOTOPIC RETINAL VISIBILITY CURVE

Author Affiliations

BOSTON
From the Howe Laboratory of Ophthalmology, Harvard University, and the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1938;20(5):713-725. doi:10.1001/archopht.1938.00850230017002
Abstract

For the past half century the relation between visual purple and vision has been realized to be of fundamental importance. Many investigators1 have compared the absorption spectrum of visual purple with the scotopic visibility curve. Some of the more recent comparisons have been made by Hecht and Williams,2 Dartnall and Goodeve3 and Blum.4 The comparisons made by Hecht and Williams and by Blum are inadequate because the absorption spectrum of visual purple was compared with the scotopic ocular visibility curve, which means that no corrections were made for the selective absorption of light by the refractive media of the human eye. These comparisons are also inadequate because the absorption spectrum of visual purple used was that determined by Koettgen and Abelsdorff,1c whereas the more recent work of Lythgoe,5 of Krause and Sidwell6 and of Bayliss, Lythgoe and Tansley7 has shown that

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