The World's Most Mysterious Book
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29-11-2012, 12:30 PM
The World's Most Mysterious Book
The Voynich Manuscript , named after a book dealer who owned it for a time in the early Twentieth Century. Its author is unknown, as is its place of origin (though Northern Italy is considered a good candidate). It is believed to have been written in the early 1400s. Some 240 pages long, it is written in a language that has thus far resisted all efforts at decipherment. A number of pages also feature odd drawings of unidentifiable plants and other such things. A closeup image of a portion of one page:

[Image: Voynich_manuscript_bathtub2_example_78r_cropped.jpg]

The book is now part of Yale's rare book collection. Scans of the entire book are now available on various web sites.
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29-11-2012, 12:41 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
Fascinating. Have you heard about this before? Have you formed an opinion about it's significance?

"All that is necessary for the triumph of Calvinism is that good Atheists do nothing." ~Eric Oh My
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29-11-2012, 12:48 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
(29-11-2012 12:41 PM)Erxomai Wrote:  Fascinating. Have you heard about this before? Have you formed an opinion about it's significance?
I actually don't even remember how I first heard about this book. My best guess would be that I somehow stumbled across it one day when I was wandering around Wikipedia -- I find out about all kinds of weird stuff that way.

I haven't formed an opinion about its significance, but I find myself particularly intrigued by the text. It feels as though it's hovering right outside my recognition, as though I can almost, but not quite, place it. Kind of like if you were to suddenly realize that it was written in mirror-text in a language you studied for a few years in high school.

I do wonder whether we'll ever figure out what it says, if anything -- some have proposed that the text is mere gibberish and the whole thing is a hoax, but after spending time "reading" the book, I'd have to say it's awfully intricate to be some form of chicanery. To create an entire alphabet, then practice writing in it to the point where the ductus is so smooth and flowing, would be a tremendous amount of work. To say nothing of going on to write 240 pages of it once your hand was practiced.

I wonder whether it's possible to see the actual book itself. That would be worth a trip to Yale, especially since that wouldn't be a huge trip for me (I live in the Metro DC area).
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29-11-2012, 12:57 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
(29-11-2012 12:48 PM)pianodwarf Wrote:  I wonder whether it's possible to see the actual book itself. That would be worth a trip to Yale, especially since that wouldn't be a huge trip for me (I live in the Metro DC area).

You should go. What if you're the key?

I've been re-immersing myself in Alias re-runs and it reminds me of the Rambaldi Artifacts that all the spies were always chasing after.

But it also reminds me of the Piri Reis Map allegedly made in the 1500s and showing the coastline of South America and even possibly the coastline of Antarctica without ice.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of Calvinism is that good Atheists do nothing." ~Eric Oh My
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29-11-2012, 01:05 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
Ah, yes, Alias was a good one. Sloane's fate was a nice touch.

It doesn't seem likely that I'd be the one to discover the secret of the Voynich Manuscript, although that is a neat thought. Even so, though, I really would like to see the book. I think I'll email them this evening to ask about it, although I wouldn't be surprised if access is restricted to academic types.
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29-11-2012, 01:06 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
(29-11-2012 01:05 PM)pianodwarf Wrote:  Ah, yes, Alias was a good one. Sloane's fate was a nice touch.

It doesn't seem likely that I'd be the one to discover the secret of the Voynich Manuscript, although that is a neat thought. Even so, though, I really would like to see the book. I think I'll email them this evening to ask about it, although I wouldn't be surprised if access is restricted to academic types.
Don't let them see your Scissorhands. They definitely won't give you access then!

"All that is necessary for the triumph of Calvinism is that good Atheists do nothing." ~Eric Oh My
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29-11-2012, 05:54 PM (This post was last modified: 29-11-2012 06:03 PM by kpax.)
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
How/Why is it in color? It looks like something done in the early/mid 1900s to me.

Or time traveler dropped his book? Smile
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29-11-2012, 06:40 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
(29-11-2012 05:54 PM)kpax Wrote:  How/Why is it in color? It looks like something done in the early/mid 1900s to me.

Or time traveler dropped his book? Smile
The Wikipedia article suggests the paint might have been added later, but analysis of the ink shows the ink used for the text matches the ink for the drawings, but not the color painted areas.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of Calvinism is that good Atheists do nothing." ~Eric Oh My
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29-11-2012, 07:14 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
*insert link to thread already on this*

They tell me I'm the shit, I'm like 'duh...'
[Image: 3cdac7eec8f6b059070d9df56f50a7ae.jpg]
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29-11-2012, 07:54 PM
RE: The World's Most Mysterious Book
muffs, you lazy ass bastard

http://www.thethinkingatheist.com/forum/...ht=voynich

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