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The last 30 Voynich blog posts from the community across the web... Posted on From
“An Anatomy of Failure: Analysis Attempts to Decode the Voynich Manuscript”…
Given that most Voynich furrows have been heavily overploughed over the last two decades, it has become rare for something novel to pop up on my Voynich radar. On those rare occasions such a thing does happen (e.g. the Sagittarius crossbowman, etc), I do try to use my posts to communicate a sense of enthusiasm … Read More → The post “An Anatomy of Failure: Analysis Attempts to Decode the Voynich Manuscript”… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Mon 19 Feb 2018
Nick Pelling

Cipher Mysteries and Rome…
Just in passing: I’m planning a trip to Rome in the near future, and so have been wondering what Cipher Mysteries-related things there might be to see or do there. Armando al Pantheon The Armando al Pantheon restaurant (with its Luigi Serafini-designed alchemical crockery, complete with miniature Pantheon) is obviously on the list. I note … Read More → The post Cipher Mysteries and Rome… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sat 10 Feb 2018
Nick Pelling

On postmodernism, History, Truth, and the X-Files…
Beyond the ivory-towered coterie of the late twentieth century academic world, few people cared to try to understand postmodernism, let alone wield it: even now, few mourn its death. Attempts to define what postmodernism actually was tend to come across almost as effete and self-referential as the worst postmodernist works themselves: all that can comfortably … Read More → The post On postmodernism, History, Truth, and the X-Files… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Fri 09 Feb 2018
Nick Pelling

Yet another Voynich round-up post…
Incidental news: Cipher Mysteries recently had its 25,000th comment, while it has now also had close to three million page views. Which is nice. (Just thought I’d mention it in passing.) The remainder of the post is for tying up various Voynich threads that aren’t each enough for a whole post of their own. Edith … Read More → The post Yet another Voynich round-up post… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sat 03 Feb 2018
Nick Pelling

An open letter to pretty much every linguistic Voynich theorist ever
(Please excuse the impersonality of what follows, but so many linguistic Voynich theories are popping up at the moment that responding to them all individually would be an even greater waste of my life than trawling through their sad attempts at ‘research’: sorry, hope you understand, etc.) Dear linguistic Voynich theorist, Thank you so much … Read More → The post An open letter to pretty much every linguistic Voynich theorist ever appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Fri 02 Feb 2018
Nick Pelling

Have Kondrak and Hauer finally revealed the Voynich Manuscript’s secrets? (Errrm… no, not really, sorry. But…)
Thanks to Newsweek and Fox News (and whoever else picks the story up next), some techy Canadian Voynich research is currently enjoying its day in the sun. (Hint to authors: sorry, but based on recent evidence, it would seem that you have ~48 hours to get your next funding request submitted and approved before everyone … Read More → The post Have Kondrak and Hauer finally revealed the Voynich Manuscript’s secrets? (Errrm… no, not really, sorry. But…) appeared first on ....
Sat 27 Jan 2018
Nick Pelling

Might Voynich f57v depict a nocturnal?
Because last year’s Voynich research brought me a step closer to German calendars, I finally got round to reading Ernst Zinner’s epic “Regiomontanus: His Life and Works” (or, rather, to Ezra Brown’s 1990 translation of the same). On the one hand, Zinner is crushingly magisterial, in both tone and deep attention to detail (though the … Read More → The post Might Voynich f57v depict a nocturnal? appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sun 21 Jan 2018
Nick Pelling

Cracking the Paul Rubin Cipher…
I’ve noticed a number of things about the Paul Rubin ciphertext, which are definitely beyond what the FBI’s cryptanalysts managed to find. Please feel free to advance these yet further! The Paul Rubin Ciphertext Here’s my transcription, as posted on the Cipher Foundation website, but with the individual lines numbered: [01] digIs sawthn'g mathUlley-Dulles crancklavn' … Read More → The post Cracking the Paul Rubin Cipher… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Fri 05 Jan 2018
Nick Pelling

Paul Rubin’s cipher, revisited…
Back in 2015, I blogged about the ciphertext that was found taped to Paul Rubin’s stomach, and also wondered whether Rubin might have suffered from paranoid schizophrena, and whether the FBI would ever release his code-tables. On a larger scale, given that we only had a single scratchy newspaper photograph of his cipher to work … Read More → The post Paul Rubin’s cipher, revisited… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Wed 03 Jan 2018
Nick Pelling

Disney Star Wars, and Shrek’s MI5 Adventure…
Just before Christmas, I went up to London for what is rapidly becoming a very traditional slice of overdone turkey at the BFI IMAX cinema. I refer, of course, to the third Disney Star Wars film, “The Last Jedi”. According to my son, the first Disney Star Wars film was two hours of recapitulation (noble … Read More → The post Disney Star Wars, and Shrek’s MI5 Adventure… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Tue 02 Jan 2018
Nick Pelling

Cipher Mysteries Christmas Panto: “Jack and the Cursed Manuscript” (Part One)…
“Jack and the Cursed Manuscript” – Part One 1. MEDIEVAL HOVEL (THOUGH AS THE LIGHTS COME UP, IT INCREASINGLY RESEMBLES A MODERN-DAY CRACK DEN) JACK’S MUM: Woe is me! I’m a poor old peasant woman ‘oo ‘as frittered a giant’s castle full o’ gold on online casinos an’ Class A drugs. JACK [aside to the … Read More → The post Cipher Mysteries Christmas Panto: “Jack and the Cursed Manuscript” (Part One)… appeared ....
Mon 01 Jan 2018
Nick Pelling

La Buse film being shot…
“La Buse, l’or maudit des Pirates de l’océan Indien” is a two-part (i.e. 2 x 52 minutes) documentary with fictional re-enactments (you get the idea) made by Kapali Studios, and due for release around January 2019 (so no need to get too excited just yet). If (like me) you’re a pirate museum trivia fan, you’ll … Read More → The post La Buse film being shot… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Thu 28 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

2017: cipher mystery books I’ve bought this year…
The total of my cipher mystery books purchases for 2017 was £260, which was actually a little lower than recent years (it’s been fairly quiet). For a change this year, I thought I’d list them here in all their eclectic glory. I’ve lightly annotated each of these cipher mystery books, to cast a little glancing … Read More → The post 2017: cipher mystery books I’ve bought this year… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Tue 26 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

The Zodiac Killer’s Z13 cipher meets his Z340 cipher…
After The History Channel’s recent season of “The Hunt For The Zodiac Killer” programmes (episodes 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5), I thought it was time to get back to some non-fake-news codebreaking research. In particular, I want to suggest an approach we might follow to try to solve the Z340 that (hopefully) won’t need … Read More → The post The Zodiac Killer’s Z13 cipher meets his Z340 cipher… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sat 16 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

“The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” season finale, and Craig Bauer’s Z340 cipher “crack”…
Without any further ado, here’s The History Channel’s “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” season #1 finale, wherein Craig Bauer, having immersed himself almost completely in Zodiac Killer arcana, conjures up a new solution of the Z340, whereupon everyone else falls (or seems to fall) in line: Well… OK, I guess. I suspect what most … Read More → The post “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” season finale, and Craig Bauer’s Z340 cipher “crack”… ....
Thu 14 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

Antilanguages, and Calabar lesbian cryptic languages…
You may not be aware that there are, out in the world, many private languages – languages that offer speakers and listeners within a particular group or subculture the ability to talk about things that could if said in public cause one or both to be hated, persecuted, prosecuted, or even killed. Antilanguages The academic … Read More → The post Antilanguages, and Calabar lesbian cryptic languages… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Tue 12 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

Professor Stephen Bax (1960 – 2017)
I learned, via an email from Rene Zandbergen today, that Voynich theorist Stephen Bax died a few days ago. It was only last month that he and Rene jointly formed the Voynich research presence at the Siloe press launch (he is on the left below, next to Rene): I’m sure there are plenty whom he … Read More → The post Professor Stephen Bax (1960 – 2017) appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Mon 11 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

The Zodiac Killer, the Albany Cipher, and David Oranchak’s “Connie Henly”…
The new week brings a further episode of the History Channel’s “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer”, not for the first time promising much but delivering little (Donna Lass car directions, really?) – the best part [37:25] was the interview with Zodiac Historian Misty Johansen (who wasn’t playing to CARMEL’s script). Even though it also … Read More → The post The Zodiac Killer, the Albany Cipher, and David Oranchak’s “Connie Henly”… ....
Sat 09 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

Jim Handlin and the Voynich Manuscript…
If you think what the world really needs right now is yet another Voynich theory, preferably one that’s been stewing in some guy’s head for more than a decade and that could well emerge in book form during the next twelve months, then please feel free to advance to the edge of your seat, because … Read More → The post Jim Handlin and the Voynich Manuscript… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Fri 08 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

The Donna Lass cipher, solved… but no happy ending, sorry.
OK, I’m going to start this post by embedding S01E03 of the History Channel’s “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer”, because this is what started me on the road to the solution to the Donna Lass cipher: About half the episode is taken up with trying to make links between the Zodiac Killer and Donna … Read More → The post The Donna Lass cipher, solved… but no happy ending, sorry. appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sat 02 Dec 2017
Nick Pelling

Voynich metatheories, Rich SantaColoma, and Document X…
What on earth, you may reasonably ask, is a Voynich “metatheory”? I use the term for a specific kind of Voynich Manuscript theory that seeks to explain more or less all its puzzling features by pointing to a single – usually surprising and/or counterintuitive – lateral step away from what we know (or, rather, what … Read More → The post Voynich metatheories, Rich SantaColoma, and Document X… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Mon 27 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

“Drawing Close – Voynich Series”, by Sabina Sallis…
Here’s another Voynich-themed art show to add to what is already a medium-sized list: “Drawing Close – Voynich Series”, by Sabina Sallis. It’s at the Customs House art centre in Mill Dam conservation area in South Shields, close to the River Tyne south bank ferry landing until March 2018. Helen Shaddock seems to like it, … Read More → The post “Drawing Close – Voynich Series”, by Sabina Sallis… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sat 25 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

A second “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” episode…
A new day, and a new episode of “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” (S01 E02, in programme guide speak) to trawl through. Luckily, though, this week’s episode proved to be fairly lightweight: Increasingly Uncomfortable I’m sorry to have to say it, but as this series goes on, I’m getting less and less comfortable with … Read More → The post A second “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” episode… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Thu 23 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

Grudge match: Jess Feldman’s “Call It A Premonition” vs supercomputer Zodiac Killer poetry…
What journalists the world over love to do is to bring two vaguely related things together to review or discuss, as if by doing so they identify an incipient trend or fashion. Once pointed out, of course, this trick reeks of self-indulgent modern tossery: but in the scientific interest of exploring different ways of writing … Read More → The post Grudge match: Jess Feldman’s “Call It A Premonition” vs supercomputer Zodiac Killer poetry… appeared first on Cipher ....
Tue 21 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

A Voynich Morning
My left arm, disembodied, slowly rejoins the mothership Searching for adverbs, unsuccessful as ever Distant aches filed for future reference Blur, wash, smudged light chinks overpainting Eyes that shouldn’t be open quickly close And re-enter that censored dream again, the one with the And the And the two naked women standing oddly, reading telegrams “ABACTOR … Read More → The post A Voynich Morning appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sun 19 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

Gerry Feltus’s “The Unknown Man”, now available as an ebook…
A little while back, I became aware that “The Unknown Man” – which I consider to be the #1 factual account of the Somerton Man cold case / Tamam Shud mystery – was about to be republished in ebook format, and so I asked Gerry Feltus for some more details to share with you. What … Read More → The post Gerry Feltus’s “The Unknown Man”, now available as an ebook… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sat 18 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

Karga Seven’s “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” commences…
The History Channel’s new Karga Seven-produced series “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer” has just started: it features top Zodiac Killer researcher Dave Oranchak, Copiale Cipher cracker (and Voynich Manuscript fanboy) Kevin Knight, long-time Zodiac researcher (and University of North Texas CompSci professor) Ryan Garlick, Cryptologia editor (and author of “Unsolved!”) Craig Bauer, and a … Read More → The post Karga Seven’s “The Hunt for the Zodiac ....
Fri 17 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

Request for help: an illustrated copy of Sacrobosco’s De Sphaera online?
A week or more ago, I started writing up a fairly hefty post on John of Sacrobosco’s famous “De Sphaera” (which is one of the books Nicole Oresme translated into French, adding his commentary). I was particularly interested in the diagrams that appear in many of the manuscripts, and so began with Lynn Thorndike’s account … Read More → The post Request for help: an illustrated copy of Sacrobosco’s De Sphaera online? appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Tue 14 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

Enigma parade float from Poznan…
Thanks to a top tip from the Cryptocollectors mailing list, here’s what the Stwórzmy Enigma Museum in Pozna? posted on Facebook today: 11 listopada w Poznaniu to nie tylko Dzie? Niepodleg?o?ci, ale tak tak?e Imieniny Ulicy ?wi?ty Marcin. Par? lat temu na Paradzie ?wi?tomarci?skiej wystawili?my ?yw? Enigm? na kó?kach, w której “przyciskami” byli harcerze z … Read More → The post Enigma parade float from Poznan… appeared first on Cipher Mysteries.
Sat 11 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

Gerard Cheshire, Vulgar Latin, and the siren call of the polyglot…
Writer (and University of Bristol PhD student) Gerard Cheshire has recently been asking people to look at his paper “Linguistic missing links: instruction in decrypting, translating and transliterating the only document known to use both proto-Romance language and proto-Italic symbols for its writing system“. (Note that this is actually a draft, but dressed up to … Read More → The post Gerard Cheshire, Vulgar Latin, and the siren call of the polyglot… appeared first ....
Fri 10 Nov 2017
Nick Pelling

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