If Edward was an albino you can imagine that it would have a great impact on him and his personality. Most certainly, he would be treated differently.
How was albinism perceived back then, I wonder? I don’t know. I would think one of three ways:
- It was perceived in a bad way. As far as I know a condition like that could have been perceived as some divine punishment or something associated with satan. Or he may have been ostracized or set apart from everyone, as he was so unlike them. Perhaps this is why the monastic style life appealed to him so much?
- It was perceived in a good way. He could have been looked at as someone ‘favored’ by God. It’s very possible that it made him religious as he believed it was a sign from God. It’s also possible that the people perceived him that way and it was one of the reasons he was perceived as a saint in his life. Who knows?
- It was just perceived as something different and he wasn’t treated any differently than anyone else.
None of the accounts, as far as I know, suggest any one of these. But I would think that something as unusual and rare as albinism in a King would have been mentioned. As near as I can tell there is no mention of it or anything hinting at it. The idea that he was an albino appears to be a point of view that was mentioned by later historians who were speculating about the accounts of his white skin. It’s for this reason I tend to think he was not an albino. The accounts of his ‘white skin’ describe him in his older years. His skin may of just been paler then.