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September 1985

Apologia Pro Sancta Lucia

Author Affiliations

Fort Dix, NJ

Arch Ophthalmol. 1985;103(9):1282-1283. doi:10.1001/archopht.1985.01050090034019

To the Editor.  —In their recent article, Khan et al1 clarified a common misconception regarding the Oedipus myth: Oedipus' ocular self-mutilation actually consisted of "gouging his eyes with his mother's brooches" rather than frank enucleation.Similarly, I would like to clarify an oft-repeated1,2 legend concerning St Lucy: her ocular mutilation was actually either apocryphal or one of the ordeals of her martyrdom in 304 ad, rather than pietistic autoenucleation. This contention is supported by Koch3 and others.4-6Incidentally, St Lucy's Day, Dec 13, is traditionally celebrated by Swedes (Figure) as well as by ophthalmologists.