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October 1940


Arch Ophthalmol. 1940;24(4):691-697. doi:10.1001/archopht.1940.00870040077006

Hypertelorism is a congenital anomaly of the skull and face characterized by a wide separation of the orbits, causing the eyes to be far apart. The large interpupillary distance is exaggerated by a divergent squint in most cases. The anomaly produces an animal-like appearance of the face.

The earliest picture we could find of a person with a condition resembling hypertelorism was published in 1586 by Giovanni Battista della Porta1 in his book, "De humana physiognomonia" (fig. 1). The drawing of a cow is shown alongside for comparison. The eyes of both the human subject and the cow are far apart and seem to look in opposite directions. This picture was reproduced in 1625 by Samuel Fuchs2 and again in 1938 by Bojlén and Brems.3

Two cases of what appears to be hypertelorism were reported by Sophus Schack4 in 1858. In 1890 Fridolin5 described a

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