The Voynich Manuscript
The Voynich Manuscript might be the most mysterious manuscript in history as no one really knows when it was written, nor what language it was written in. It was purchased by a Polish book dealer named Wilfrid Voynich in 1912 and to this day has yet to be translated, though many have tried, including code breakers from World War I and World War II. The script is handwritten on calf skin rather than regular paper which has been carbon-dated to have been made sometime between the years 1404 and 1438, although that still doesn’t tell us when the Voynich Manuscript was actually written.
Most of the pages also contain images or diagrams that seem to describe different things such as plants or herbs, but what is so mysterious about these images is the fact that there are 113 different species of plants and over 100 depictions of what appear to be medicinal herbs that don’t seem to match anything that we know about in nature. Some believe it may be something called a pharmacopeia which is a book that describes drugs and their uses.
It has even been suggested that the still unknown author of this manuscript may have been under the influence whilst writing this book. In addition to these sections, there also seem to be sections referring to cosmology, astrology or astronomy, biology and possibly recipes.
Some people regard the Voynich Manuscript as a hoax and/or simply nonsense, while there are much grander theories such as that the original author and illustrator of the book may have had ties to extraterrestrials or may even have been one himself. Expert code breakers and the world’s best cryptographers are still puzzled to this day. Today, the Voynich Manuscript can be found at Yale University’s Beineke Rare Book and Manuscript Library under the call number MS 408.
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