Unsolved Mysteries

The Voynich Manuscript. Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library in association with Yale University Press, 2016. 9780300217230.

voynich-manuscriptAn unassuming little book, the original Voynich Manuscript is hand-written on vellum with no intricate binding or decoration, and there is no clear history of its authorship or ownership. (It pops up from time to time in historical records, then disappears.) The text is written in an unknown language (possibly a code) using an unknown alphabet. The botanical illustrations found on most pages are of plants that don’t exist. The celestial charts at its center are indecipherable. No one has been able to understand the text, and there is only speculation as to the book’s purpose. It is the world’s most mysterious book.

This is a page by page reproduction of the original with lots of space in the margins for you to scribble your theories. Plus there are essays on what the book might be and the results of various scientific tests done on it. It’s your own copy of a real mystery. I was pretty excited to finally get to see it after hearing about it for years, but then I was somehow disappointed that to me (not an expert on languages, codes, alchemy, or any esoteric arts) it’s pretty much still a mystery. I guess I was hoping that I would somehow be able to divine it’s true meaning.

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