Perfect Sight Without Glasses, by W.H. Bates, M.D.

This is a reproduction of Dr. Bates’s original 1920 book. It should not be confused with Better Eyesight Without Glasses, an abridged edition published in 1943, twelve years after Bates’s death. That edition is more widely available, but it excludes large portions of the text and all pictures.

The book’s copyright expired in 1948. It is now in the public domain.

A PDF version of this book is available for download. See further below.

Chapter 1 – Introductory
Chapter 2 – Simultaneous Retinoscopy
Chapter 3 – Evidence for the Accepted Theory of Accommodation
Chapter 4 – The Truth About Accommodation … (1)
Chapter 5 – The Truth About Accommodation … (2)
Chapter 6 – The Truth About Accommodation … (3)
Chapter 7 – The Variability of the Refraction of the Eye
Chapter 8 – What Glasses Do to Us
Chapter 9 – Cause and Cure of Errors of Refraction
Chapter 10 – Strain
Chapter 11 – Central Fixation
Chapter 12 – Palming
Chapter 13 – Memory As an Aid to Vision
Chapter 14 – Imagination As an Aid to Vision
Chapter 15 – Shifting and Swinging
Chapter 16 – The Illusions of Imperfect and of Normal Sight
Chapter 17 – Vision Under Adverse Conditions a Benefit to the Eye
Chapter 18 – Optimums and Pessimums
Chapter 19 – The Relief of Pain and Other Symptoms by the Aid of the Memory
Chapter 20 – Presbyopia: Its Cause and Cure
Chapter 21 – Squint and Amblyopia: Their Cause
Chapter 22 – Squint and Amblyopia: Their Cure
Chapter 23 – Floating Specks: Their Cause and Cure
Chapter 24 – Home Treatment
Chapter 25 – Correspondence Treatment
Chapter 26 – The Prevention of Myopia in Schools: Methods that Failed
Chapter 27 – The Prevention and Cure of Myopia and Other Errors …
Chapter 28 – The Story of Emily
Chapter 29 – Mind and Vision
Chapter 30 – Normal Sight and the Relief of Pain for Soldiers and Sailors
Chapter 31 – Letters from Patients
Chapter 32 – Reason and Authority

Credit to the people who assisted in this project.

William H. Bates, M.D.— author of the book
Health Research Books— 1978 reprint
Thomas R. Quackenbush— conversion into digital format, including scanning, OCR, and proofreading
Jon Sherling— conversion into html for use on a website
Alex Eulenberg— additional editing and making available at i-see

  • Karen McBride

    Only 10 days without my glasses, doing Bates exercises, and I can now read without glasses for the first time in years! What a wonderful gift Dr. Bates gave us. Our eyes can heal and do it very quickly. I’m greatly enjoying the progress I make each day toward my newly healthy eyes! Thanks so very much.

    • Kevin

      Thank you for your account!

    • witeken

      The Wikipedia article is very skeptical; there’s no scientific evidence. So I don’t really want to read the whole book, so what are those exercises you do?



  • Sime Zonjic


  • Liliana Carmen Luchian

    well, where is the download button, couse it desapears after sharing

    • David

      After sharing you should see a link that says “download the PDF version here” in place of the box.

  • anne stromberg

    How do I down load this PDF file. I have adobe reader. It says check below….but I don’t get it.

  • anne stromberg

    I click on the download…the arrow indicates it is being downloaded……………but then I can’t fnd it to print out.
    Anyoine able to help. I use firefox. Thanks.

    • David

      I can’t help with finding it on your end once you’ve downloaded it. In Windows 7 I know it’s usually saved in Downloads.