John Heywood (c. 1497 – c. 1580) was an English writer known for his plays, poems, and collection of proverbs. According to the ‘Random House Dictionary of Popular Proverbs and Sayings’ this proverb "There are none so blind as those who will not see" has been traced back to John Heywood in 1546. It resembles the Biblical verse of Jeremiah 5:21 which is as follows,

‘Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not’.

In 1738 it was also used by Jonathan Swift in his ‘Polite Conversation’ and is first attested in the United States in the 1713 ‘Works of Thomas Chalkley’. The full saying is: “There are none so blind as those who will not see. The most deluded people are those who choose to ignore what they already know.”

Singer Ray Stevens is given credit for writing the phrase “There is none so blind as he who will not see,” in a line from the song “Everything Is Beautiful.” which was released in 1970.

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