Voynich Manuscript Documentary

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Bart Stewart
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Voynich Manuscript Documentary

Postby Bart Stewart » Wed May 31, 2017 2:12 am

I just came across the most interesting and intelligent documentary I've ever seen on the Voynich Manuscript. Lots of interesting details on the mystery. It goes into the modern lab work that has been done on the book. They even come to a conclusion that makes sense, not that there is any definite answer. We will probably never have that.

Anyway, next time you have a spare 50 minutes . . .

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awGN5NApDy4

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Upton_O_Goode
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Re: Voynich Manuscript Documentary

Postby Upton_O_Goode » Wed May 31, 2017 2:27 pm

Certainly a fascinating puzzle. I don't have the full 50 minutes at the moment, unfortunately. This and the antikythaira mechanism have interested me for a long time. The latter is more transparent, and one can make reasonable conjectures based on counting the teeth in the gears. It is definitely some version of an astrolabe, but the full functions are not understood, and the presence of such precise technology at such an early date is astounding.

But I remember that something as simple as Stonehenge has been "decoded" many times. It certainly has astronomical uses, but what was the astronomy being applied to down here on earth? Religious ritual? Crop planting? And the technology involved in transporting those bluestones to that particular spot indicates good engineering skills and speaks to extraordinary motivation. Why did the builders (some of them, over a period of 1000 years) go such distances to find those stones? Easter Island and the Nazca lines all indicate something extraordinary about the people who created them, but what it was, I can't say. One can only guess.

Problem is, as skeptics know, there are people who can't live with that ambiguity. I was once tasked with lecturing to a group of university alumni on the pyramids. Inevitably, there was a hyperventilating couple in the back row who asked me why it wasn't obvious that the pyramids had been built by aliens using anti-gravity devices. I replied that (1) the quarries where the stones were cut still exist and (2) there are actual pictures of the pyramid stones being processed. Did no good, of course. If there's any mystery you can't solve, the hysterical set will immediately conclude that magic was involved.
"[A clergyman] debases spiritual exaltation by reducing it to a hollow and meaningless formality, as a politician debases patriotism and a lady of joy debases love." -- H. L. Mencken

Matthew Ellard
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Re: Voynich Manuscript Documentary

Postby Matthew Ellard » Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:19 am

Upton_O_Goode wrote: If there's any mystery you can't solve, the hysterical set will immediately conclude that magic was involved.
I totally agree.

The video that Bart posted however was pretty good. It simply gave an more accurate early 15th Century date, for the Voynich Manuscript, using chemistry, and then went through all the normal encoding, encryption and enciphering techniques to show that the document was probably bogus and made up on the spot.

The video then pointed out the document's history suggests it was from renaissance north Italy and suggested the drawing were not accurate in comparison to contemporary book drawings at the time.

The video's host then offered a fun, but plausible hypothesis, that it was forged by a magician or alchemist seeking a wealthy patron around 1400 to 1420. I think this makes sense.
:D

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Gord
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Re: Voynich Manuscript Documentary

Postby Gord » Thu Jun 01, 2017 12:49 pm

I found the video to be about 45 minutes too long. The last five minutes were enough information for me. The rest of it, though interesting (some parts I hadn't heard about before), was too speculative for my tastes. One person even said, "You can find something in the manuscript to support pretty much any theory you want to come up with." Well if that's true then you're relying on limited data and you need to gather more. Carbon dating it was about the only new data I saw mentioned in the entire video.
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