Lots of traits are statistically rare: Left-handedness just 10 per cent of the population, curly hair 11 per cent, and blond hair 4 per cent, to name a few. But of the more than seven billion people on the planet, only 2 per cent can claim to have this one special trait. To put that in perspective, that’s 140 million people.
So what’s this rare trait only one in fifty of us possess? Green eyes. That’s right, just 2 per cent of the world’s population is lucky enough to have ’em, according to World Atlas.
Compare that to other eye colours. For example, some 79 per cent of the population has brown eyes, while 8 per cent has blue. About 5 per cent of people have hazel eyes and another 5 per cent have amber eyes. Simply put, green eyes are incredibly unique. Unique enough, in fact, to give Chris Martin the inspiration that would make Coldplay an overnight success.
Green eyes are most common in Central, Western, and Northern Europe, and typically point to Celtic or German ancestry. At the moment, they are most prevalent in Britain, Iceland, the Netherlands, Scotland, Estonia, and Scandinavia. In fact, according to a study conducted by ScotlandsDNA, in Britain, brown eyes are rarer than green. There, 22 per cent of the population has brown eyes, compared to the jaw-dropping 30 per cent that has green.
To get green eyes, the irises need a unique blend of light brown pigmentation, yellowish lipochrome pigment and a splash of Rayleigh scattering,” according to Eyesite Opticians. And interestingly enough, it can take up to three years for green eyes to appear in small children as the Rayleigh scattering takes time to form and appear in humans.
Despite green eyes being such a rarity, numerous characters in literature and film have them perhaps to convey a sense of mystery. In fact, many researchers believe that eye colour is a true indicator of personality. For example, researchers from the University of Queensland and the University of New South Wales found that they tended to be less agreeable, more competitive, creative, devious, and shy.
So there you have it. If eyes truly are the windows of the soul, that means that people with green eyes possess the rarest souls on the planet.