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Sat nite fun: Could the undeciphered Voynich manuscript be written in an extinct Mexican language?

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File:Voynich Manuscript (170).jpg

Maybe. Found in a monastery by William Voynich in 1912, the book manuscript, including many drawings, could just be gibberish, intended to defraud a book collector. But recently, a botanist had a look at it and noticed something interesting: Some plant illustrations match illustrations from 16th century Mexico:

The most striking example was an illustration of a soap plant (xiuhamolli) in a Mexican book dated 1552. Tucker and Rexford Talbert, a retired information technology researcher at the US Department of Defense and NASA, connected a total of 37 of the 303 plants, six animals and one mineral illustrated in the Voynich manuscript to 16th century species in the region that lies between Texas, California and Nicaragua. They think many of the plants could have come from what is now central Mexico.

On the basis of these similarities, the pair suggests that the manuscript came from the New World, and that it might be written in an extinct form of the Mexican language Nahuatl. Deciphering the names of these plants could therefore help crack the Voynich code.

Maybe. But another researcher points out that the fraudster might have used Mexican plants just to deepen the apparent mystery.

If so, a lot of work and trouble for the money, don’t you think? Sounds more like an existential joke.

See also:

Bible code? Naw, probably not, but secret codes in written material are nothing new

English composer wrote unbreakable (?) cipher

Copiale cipher: And you thought the genetic code was difficult to crack

Interesting! Voynich is a real mystery but instantly recognisable as designed. A case to spark thoughts . . . kairosfocus

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