what is a Doodle ? To pull of the forgotten – and sometimes historical – of the inventors, of the figures of the past, and sometimes the benefactors of humanity. So Charles-Michel de L Sword was born in 1712. This French priest, the son of an architect expert of the Buildings of king Louis XIV decides not to follow the path of his father as he dreamed and preferred enter the minor Seminary. A vocation soon annoyed, because refusing to rule on the dispute jansenist who was tearing then the kingdom, it was a private ordination, and embraces then the career of a lawyer. Recalled by bishop Bossuet (the nephew of the bishop of Meaux), he ends up taking the cassock in 1736 with the firm intention of devoting himself to works of charity.

His achievement of arms is to have reflected, as early as 1760, a language of signs used by the deaf. By bringing together hard-of-hearing in his institution, he observes that they have naturally imagined gestures to understand each other. He had the idea to codify these signs to make it a medium of understanding and expression universal. It includes a thirty children in his institution, to teach them this language and learn it himself. A company to codify the expression of the deaf between them is the syntax of the French language. It was challenged by certain persons who are deaf, which would show that it is futile to attempt to teach the deaf a means of expression disconnected from their cultural identity.

Rights of man

The abbot of The Sword is, however, recognized two years after his death as the inventor of the LSF, the French sign language and will enable the national Assembly in 1791 to recognize the deaf the benefit of the rights of man. The LSF is now practised by almost 170 000 persons in the world, of which about 100 000 in France. In 1996, in his film Ridicule Patrice Leconte puts in scene the efforts of the priest to take out the deaf of their condition.

Charles-Michel de The Sword dies on December 23, 1789, and no one today put in question his involvement and his intuition decisive to establish a language of signs. The RSA, however, was not allowed at the school from 1991 onwards and it was not until 2005 that she is actually considered a “real” language. Charles-Michel’s Sword is buried in the church of Saint-Roch in Paris.