Deaf history

Deaf and signing members of royal families

Princess Diana of Wales (1961-1997) is lovingly remembered by Deaf community for her learning British Sign Language (BSL) and presenting it in public. Her signing was natural and beautiful that reflects her beauty.

Diana joined British Deaf Association (BDA) to become its patron and learned BSL in 1983. She signed BSL to 800 delegates at a BDA conference in Brighton, East Sussex, in 1990. She also often visited deaf schools.

Princess Alice of Battenberg (1885-1969) was born deaf in 1885 at Windsor Castle. She was the great granddaughter of Queen Victoria. At age 17, she fell in love with Prince Andrew of Greece. They married in 1903 and later had five children. Their son Philip later married to Queen Elizabeth II. Alice and her children communicated mainly in sign language.

Lady Joan Stewart of Scotland (1428-1486) was born deaf and used sign language, even in public (using sign langauge in public was considered a disgrace at that time). She was known as the "mute lady". (

Princess Katherine of England (1253-1257) was the fifth child of King Hentry III and his wife Eleanor of Provence. She was born deaf and sick and lived only a few years. She is buried in Westminister Abbey. Ref.

New to sign language? "Where do I start?" or "How do I start learning sign language?" This ASL Rookie guide lists some selected links to the tutorials for ASL beginners to get started and keep rolling. It may be a useful review for intermediate-level learners and ASL students as well.

Some tutorial pages are a mix of free and premium versions. Access to premium content and links below are available in the PatronPlus subscription. More links/posts will be added from time to time.

Expressing needs and wants

  1. Making commands or requests

Talking about activities

  1. Frequency of time: how often?

Are you able to carry everyday conversations in ASL? Are you a student in the intermediate levels and beyond, who wishes to boost up your signing skills? You've come to the selected tutorial series. (Some premium content are available to PatronPlus membership.)

Stories, poems, performance arts, etc. in sign language.

This documentation project follows a child's language acquisition, literacy development, and phonological acquisition in sign language, specifically ASL, from newborn to age five in a natural native-ASL environment and visual culture.