Category Archives: Voynich

The VM Zodiac as a pictorial cycle: a comparative analysis (by Marco Ponzi)

I’m pleased to present a wonderful, insightful and detailed piece of work, again by Marco Ponzi, concerning the Voynich Manuscript’s Zodiac pages. Thanks Marco.
Parallels for the Voynich Zodiac as an Image Cycle (by Marco Ponzi)
A few months ago, Johannes Klein proposed a quantitative analysis of the Voynich zodiac illustrations based on a set of “binary characters”. This post describes the results of an attempt to put Johannes’ idea into practice. I would like to thank Darren Worley and Greta Zamparini who volunteered to proofread these notes and contributed with their helpful suggestions. I am also grateful to Stephen Bax for accepting to publish this post on his website.
Here is the full spreadsheet.
131 different …

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f72r2 Zodiac and Gemini page – Darren Worley & Marco Ponzi

at.This paper was written by Darren Worley and Marco Ponzi. Many thanks to them again for their interesting work.

This short paper follows-up on our earlier jointly-written post that described examples of the Sagittarius Crossbowman (cf. the example in the Voynich manuscript; f72v2). In this paper we review various 15th-century examples of the Zodiac sign of Gemini that are depicted as clothed, clutching or embracing male-and-female figures (cf. the Voynich manuscript, f72r2).
Below is a image showing VM f72r2 in full, together with the VM Gemini twins in detail.

We begin by reviewing the iconographic history of the Gemini sign –
Greek and Roman sources describe Gemini as a couple of Embracing males:

* Hyginus, …

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f73v Zodiac and Sagittarius page – Marco Ponzi & Darren Worley

A few days I asked if anyone might be prepared to summarise what has been said so far about the Voynich manuscript’s f73v Sagittarius Zodiac page. Marco Ponzi and Darren Worley have very kindly sent me the page below – a huge amount of work and scholarship for which I (and I hope everyone) must feel immensely grateful. Thanks Marco and Darren!
As usual, please feel free to add your comments and views.
Marco and Darren start with some background on the Voynich Zodiac images in general…..
Ewa Sniezynska-Stolot observations
(For an introduction to Voynich Zodiac f70v-f73v, see D’Imperio, p.16)
In 2001, Rafal T. Prinke translated a brief note by Prof. Ewa Sniezynska-Stolot about the Voynich Zodiac pages. Sniezynska-Stolot, professor …

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Herbal Research Seminar

I just thought I would advertise this event, as it is obvious interest to the Voynich. It is in London on 14th October (with apologies to those far away!)
Seminar on Trade, Discovery and Influences in the History of Herbal Medicine
Note that the deadline for registration is very soon – 14th September at 9am!
Details of the day:
Trade, Discovery and Influences in the History of Herbal Medicine
The aim of this day is to bring together researchers to explore issues related to trade and commerce of medicinal plants in the history of herbal medicine. Trade in medicinal plants has always been part of human culture. Historiography has tended to divide medicinal cultures into discrete traditions, …

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f71r – a multispectral scan

I have recently been contacted by the Director of the Lazarus project ( who were allowed by the Beinecke last year to make multispectral scans of a few folios of the Voynich manuscript. He contacted me in case we could use them to detect any extra linguistics features not seen before.
I now have eight of these scans, in Jpeg format, and the biggest is around 10Mb [sorry, not Gb as posted before – thanks Rene]. They do give a lot of detail. I have four of f71r, 1 of f93r and 3 of f116v.  and am trying to process them to post on this site. However, they are so huge that …

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The cover of the Voynich manuscript – Rene Zandbergen

Rene Zandbergen has recently posted some ideas elsewhere on this blog relating to the parchment and cover of the Voynich manuscript. I reprint them here for convenience, and then also some further interesting information he supplied about the ‘worm holes’ and the cover .
First the parchment:
“Last year, a group at the University of York was given some samples obtained from several folios of the MS by the Beinecke library. These were used to determine the species of the animal based on protein identification. This requires only very minute samples. Apart from some 10 or so folios, also the cover was sampled. The vast majority of MS parchment is from cow (calf), …

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Voynich plant on f100r – broccoli?

Below is an email sent to me by Dr. Ramiro Gianinazzi, Switzerland. I thought it was interesting so he gave me permission to post it. It refers to this plant on f100r:

Dr. Ramiro Gianinazzi writes as follows:
“In the folio 100 is illustrated a plant which looks like a vegetable of the “brassica oleracea” family (especially broccoli).
In Italy, what is named today “broccoli”, has been used for centuries, at least since the Roman Empire period. Boccoli is the result of a selection, made by human, known in Latin language as “brachium” or simply “brassica”.
In the late medieval period, broccoli was widely used in some geographical regions influenced by the Roman civilization (including eastern territories …

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Voynich phonetics (June 2015 version) by Derek Vogt

Addendum from Derek, April 2016:
New version of the list… no new plants or astrological items to add, but /y/ is now included as a secondary interpretation for the letter ^r^ in a few cases, and the definitions of phonetic symbols are now collected near the top instead of given individually with their first applications in the tables, and a few old entries have some bits of new information added, like folios 27r & 28r. The slight shift in its overall appearance/style is a side effect of a switch from one file format to another (HTML to word processor).
The most significant difference now is the new section after the herbal & …

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Summary of my views on the Voynich Manuscript

About this site and my views
I am a professional academic and linguist, whose ‘normal’ professional work you can read about here. However, this website has largely been taken over by discussion of the Voynich manuscript (VM).
In 2014 I set out a partial, provisional theory about the manuscript which you can read about here and watch on Youtube via this page here.
Below, to the right, and in the menu above, you can see links to other pages and to the views of a host of other contributors, whose insightful contributions I gratefully acknowledge. In response to requests, however, let me here set out in brief where I currently stand on the Voynich manuscript (VM).
Not a hoax, …

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A pangolin on f80v?

I reproduce here a comment from Jose Serrano about what he suggests is a pangolin on f80v because I feel that it is worth highlighting.

Others have commented on this illustration before (see e.g. Nick Pelling’s discussion with comments here, and this one from H. Rich SantaColoma.)
However, Jose seems to offer insights which I have not seen before, so below is his post, for your comments.
There are records of the use of the pangolin for medicine. See an article here which talks about its use in Africa, and also says that:
Some group of people in East India utilised the scales for rheumatism and labour pain. The Chinese used the scales for preparations to neutralise …

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