Sunday, September 12, 2010

Voynich Manuscript

I got a question last night about the Voynich manuscript, so I'll tell you what I think about it. But first, here's the wiki to the manuscript; if you're unfamiliar with what the manuscript is, then you might want to read that first:

So there are a few people out there that are said to have written the manuscript and, out of all the contenders, I find it easier to believe that Edward Kelley is the author. Why? Because he's been attributed to a constructed (or received, as living occultists would prefer me to label it) language before, Enochian. While things like word repetition are not prevalent in the Enochian texts, the average word length appears to be around the same.

Kelley was also infamous for forgery and counterfeiting, and had knowledge of the classical languages; his familiarity with Greek could be an explanation for the text's variations in grapheme usage (the variations are more extreme in the manuscript than in Greek, but that's to be expected). His chaotic life and wanderings could also be reason as to why the writing styles of sets A and B are so different.

Frankly, I'm not an expert on cryptography (the field that this really pertains to). The most I can speak to is the language used in the text, and since it is as of yet undeciphered, there isn't much to go off of. I find the likelihood of the text being of Asiatic origin minimal; the author would have to have had verbal exposure to the source language (which means travel Old World style), and if the author was of such learned status and gained the level of fluency required to create the manuscript, they most likely would have been able to/been interested in writing the language as it's native speakers did. When researchers are making the Asiatic connection, they may be over-extrapolating; with as many languages out in the world as there are, any given text is bound to resemble a few of them in a couple of aspects. It's very bold of someone to say that they cannot recognize any graphemes or words in a text and then in the same breath say the text can be assigned to a extant language.

So, essentially, I'm saying (as a reasonably informed non-expert) that the Voynich manuscript is most likely a hoax created to turn a profit for either Kelley or Dee and the text may or may not mean anything. If it did mean something, we will probably need a gloss of some sort provided by the author to ascertain the meaning; determining the parameters of a language that you cannot dissect phonologically, morphologically, or syntactically is a tall order.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  3. Interesting take on it. After reading it, it could very well be a hoax.

  4. Huh, that's an interesting take on it. Thanks for reviewing it though. :)