The Voynich Manuscript is unreadable and is presumed to be either gibberish written to look like text, a priori code or synthetic language, a language known or unknown expressed in a novel way, e.g., phonetic equivalent of Chinese characters, or a code/cipher.   In 2004, Gordon Rugg showed that with the use of a “Cardan Grille” device script could be formed that resembled the structure of that found in the Voynich Manuscript to some degree, but not perfectly.  A priori code requires knowledge of the invented language to read it.  Work on attempting to fit the script with various known languages has been and still is worked on by some including Jacques Guy and Jorge Stolfi who propose a Chinese or other tonal language linguistic connection. Codes unlike ciphers replace whole words or phrases with symbols, other letters or numbers and require the code book to determine these as they are not mathematical or logical like the ciphers but may be randomly assigned and without the code book the code cannot be read. The cipher is the most popular theory for the text and has been worked on for many years without result so far. 

After considering various possibilities, I propose it to be a multi stage cipher, a combination of Latin converted into an invented substitution alphabet (Voynich glyphs) with multi substitution possibilities for some letters, missing letters (particularly vowels),  words combined on occasion with smaller common words and anagramming.  The resulting glyphs being laid out according to a set of rules which account for the end specific and other glyph combinations observed.  Anagrams are notoriously easy to break and the manuscript has not been broken, so anagramming seems a most unlikely method and if this is the only step then this is true, but as part of a multi step process, this need not be the case.  The downside of this as ElmarVogt points out in his blog, “Top Ten Bad Signs that your theory is likely wrong”, is that the more degrees of freedom there are with interpretation the more likely it is to be wrong.  My method breaks rules 1, 2, 3 and 4 of these signs.  I acknowledge in the spirit of Elmar Vogt’s comments and the comments of others that this is likely to produce either rubbish, anything you want it to or gibberish but I am compelled at the moment to continue on this path.  All the pages that follow of my interpretation of the manuscript have come from the employment of this method of decoding the glyphs in combination with my personal way of reading the markers, whether it has produced anything of value or more importantly of truth remains to be seen and in the hands of the reader.  


Below is a short excerpt form Wikipedia that summarises some of the examples of anagramming used by astronomers in the 17th century as a means of copyright, designed to hide the results of their research yet confirm them as author of the discovery.  

“Galileo used smaismrmilmepoetaleumibunenugttauiras for Altissimum planetam tergeminum observavi ("I have observed the most distant planet to have a triple form") for discovering the Rings of Saturnin 1610. Galileo announced his discovery that Venus had phases like the Moon in the form "Haec immatura a me iam frustra leguntur -oy" (Latin: These immature ones have already been read in vain by me -oy), that is, when rearranged, "Cynthiae figuras aemulatur Mater Amorum" (Latin: The Mother of Loves [= Venus] imitates the figures of Cynthia [= the moon]).

When Robert Hooke discovered Hooke’s law in 1660, he first published it in anagram form, ceiinossttu, for ut tensio, sic vis (Latin: as the tension, so the force).”

Wikipedia. Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0

Anagramming as a means of coding among the scientific community at the time of the Voynich Manuscript it was known and used.   Kepler tried and failed to solve Galileo’s anagram about Saturn.  Tycho was known to have suggested to Rantzau, an associate astronomer that they converse in cipher.  Christiaan Huygens used a modified form of anagram to announce his finding of the ring around Saturn in 1656 where he arranged all the letters in alphabetical groups:

 a a a a a a a c c c c c d e e e e e h i i i i i i i l l l l m m n n n n n n n n n o o o o p p q r r s t t t t t u u u u u.

Annulo cingitur, tenui, plano, nusquam cohaerente, ad eclipticam inclinato (It is surrounded by a thin flat ring, nowhere touching, and inclined to the ecliptic).

Christiaan Huygens, 1656

Ciphers and particularly anagrams were employed by astronomers to protect or hide information and notably during the time the Voynich Manuscript may have been written.  To find that anagrams could be part of the means of unlocking the text of the manuscript would not be out of context nor unexpected.  The extreme complexity that must exist within the manuscript (for it has not been broken), if it is indeed cipher can only point to the contents being of such importance or so dangerous, that it required an extreme level of protection from any eyes except the chosen one/few.  The naive drawings and presentation of the manuscript may also have been deliberate in concealing the importance of its contents or, as Gordon Rugg suspects... it may just be gibberish after all!



Copyright © 2010 P. Han