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Old 09-10-2018, 12:54 PM
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Voynich manuscript finally deciphered?


I think Cecil hit this one once. Twould appear a lot of folks spent a lot of time looking the wrong way and the wrong place and the wrong century. See:
https://www.purdue.edu/newsroom/rele...d-mystery.html

At least at first read, it seems rather conclusive.
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Old 09-10-2018, 12:58 PM
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Cool! I've always wondered what Feats an Aztec priest starts off with.
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:00 PM
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Conclusive. Right; that settles that. On to Harappan and Rongorongo, then.
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:12 PM
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If images were allowed in this forum, I'd be picking from one of these. The Yoynich manuscript is a crank magnet, having been solved more times than the Amelia Earhart disappearance. (Here is a good thread on it--post #81 is the first on an earlier 2018 decryption.)
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:22 PM
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They may or may not have hit on the key here. That there were people before them who were wrong or lying isn't important. The writings of the Ancient Egyptians were untranslated until they were.
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:25 PM
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Speaking of the ancient Egyptians, from another article about this:


"Tucker has been able to decipher some of the Mesoamerican plant names labeled in the Voynich Codex using the Rosetta Stone..."


Huh?
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:41 PM
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Speaking of the ancient Egyptians, from another article about this:


"Tucker has been able to decipher some of the Mesoamerican plant names labeled in the Voynich Codex using the Rosetta Stone..."


Huh?
That piss-poorly-worded sentence means they identified some plants and used the corresponding labels to decipher the text, except obviously they were not able to translate anything as that very press release admits. To be properly derisive I would have to get my hands on and read their book first, though, and I'm not sure I can bring myself to do that.
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:48 PM
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To be properly derisive I would have to get my hands on and read their book first, though, and I'm not sure I can bring myself to do that.

Here are some of the illustrations from the book.
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Old 09-10-2018, 02:10 PM
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At least at first read, it seems rather conclusive.
My first reaction is that it's complete bullshit, like all of the other "conclusive" analyses that have been done over the years.

Some of this is not new. The idea that some of these were Mesoamerican plants goes back some time.

I have a facsimile copy of the Voynich Manuscript. The thing is, the plant illustrations are so badly done and so inconsistent, they can be matched to almost anything you please. They're the Rorschach Test of botanical illustration.

Here's a link to the supposed illustration of an armadillo. It's not clear that it's an animal at all - it could be a pine cone - but if it is one, it looks a lot more like an Old World pangolin than it does like an armadillo. Pangolins have large plates like the one in the illustration, armadillos have small ones. The "identification" can be made only by ignoring details like these. The "alligator gar" likewise requires ignoring some details, and the spotted cat (on the right) looks much more like a leopard to me than an ocelot (although it's probably supposed to be a lion, and in fact the protruding tongue is seen in other illustrations of lions as shown on the left).

If they are supposed to illustrate real plants (which I doubt), the botanical illustrations are atrocious. If they were at all accurate, the actual species would have been identified long ago. And if they are not accurate, it's pure guesswork trying to figure out which species they might represent.

Then you've also got to explain the illustrations of hundreds of nude women bathing. If this represents "Aztec knowledge," and the illustrations are by an indigenous artist, why do all of the images apparently represent European women, with curly or blonde hair?

Last edited by Colibri; 09-10-2018 at 02:28 PM.
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Old 09-12-2018, 02:56 PM
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Voynich code's purpose finally revealed! Gang sign intended to incite strong reactions!


Jiminy Cricket!
"At first read, it seems conclusive." Just my way of saying it doesn't involve space aliens or the efforts of a truly omniscient forger who anticipated the analytical power of computers centuries before their development- but that the reasoning and constructs can be construed as a solid stab at this long-standing mystery. Tucker has been pursuing this hypothesis for quite some time. I find the willingness of reputable academics (Purdue's not exactly a hotbed of strangeness, except for the occasional issue with "bubble fusion" ) to engage in what was described in the previous thread cited in post #4 as "academic suicide" -evidence people who've spent a whole lot more time considering this than I ever shall think there's something here. Th idea of a poorly executed herbal mixing 4 or more languages, a illustrator with limited skill and a more limited palette in an attempt to convey information of what was at the time the dark side of the moon- the new world- is a boring, prosaic, even pedestrian explanation. That's why I like it. This perspective moves the Voynich manuscript from impenetrable mystery to yet another example of human acluemia. And I cannot think of a more appropriate post for MPSIMS, so I threw it here. Hope someone found it of minor interest. MDH
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Old 09-12-2018, 03:27 PM
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Th idea of a poorly executed herbal mixing 4 or more languages, a illustrator with limited skill and a more limited palette in an attempt to convey information of what was at the time the dark side of the moon- the new world- is a boring, prosaic, even pedestrian explanation. That's why I like it.
The book claims that it was illustrated by this guy and written by the governor of Cuba, and both their names are hidden in one of the illustrations.
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Old 09-12-2018, 04:13 PM
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My preferred explanation is that it is a work of "outsider art" by someone who was learned but mentally ill.

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Often, outsider art illustrates extreme mental states, unconventional ideas, or elaborate fantasy worlds.
This would explain why the plants correspond to no known species, the elaborate astrological illustrations, and the obsessive illustration of hundreds of naked women. The text is in some private invented language and alphabet, which would give it the appearance of a real language but make it completely undecipherable. The hidden meaning existed only in the creator's mind.
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Old 09-12-2018, 04:33 PM
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I have a small collection of articles and books (some are no more than pamphlets) that purport to have solved the Voynich "mystery". Some are too bizarre to warrant serious consideration. Others may have some merit, but nothing, including this latest "discovery" are so overwhelming that I am convinced. In short, I'll believe it when it has been ground up, chewed upon, and spit out. Before that, nothing suggests anything but a hoax perpetrated by a clever medieval joker with time on his hands.

Meanwhile, in other news, Noah's Ark has been found. It's somewhere near Atlantis, right where Edgar Cayce said it would be.
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Old 09-12-2018, 07:14 PM
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So in the book (which I've glanced at) they take the label of one plant and assume that it is the name for prickly pear cactus in Nahuatl. They take the label of another plant and assume that it is the name for agave in Spanish Taino. From those plants supposedly IDed and supposedly named in two different languages they built the core of their phonetic alphabet. When applying their alphabet of the manuscript, they get gibberish, and assume that it is written in some lost Mesoamerican language or dialect, in a mix of several of them, or in an entirely made-up language. Which they have deciphered the alphabet for. And hopefully with some help they will get the translation Real Soon Now.

There. I've saved the cost of buying a copy.
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Old 09-14-2018, 06:50 AM
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The cite begins thus:
"Purdue and Delaware State professors unravel century-old mystery
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The enigmatic Voynich manuscript, undecipherable to scholars for more than a century, is a 16th century Mexican manuscript...."

Nailing everything down correctly is off to a bad start.
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Old 09-14-2018, 07:29 AM
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Then you've also got to explain the illustrations of hundreds of nude women bathing. If this represents "Aztec knowledge," and the illustrations are by an indigenous artist, why do all of the images apparently represent European women, with curly or blonde hair?
That's neither curly nor blonde: it's braided, most of them into crowns, with no attempt made to reflect hair color.
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  #17  
Old 09-15-2018, 11:55 PM
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That's neither curly nor blonde: it's braided, most of them into crowns, with no attempt made to reflect hair color.
A totally pointless and irrelevant objection. Not one of the women in the MS look as if they are Mexican/indigenous, which is my main point. Can you point to one single illustration that appears to be of Mexican indigenous origin? If not, my point stands.

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  #18  
Old 09-17-2018, 10:36 AM
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I still say that manuscript is one big act of trolling that went on way too long.
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Old 09-17-2018, 11:33 AM
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How difficult would it be for modern scientists to decipher a book written in a dead language?

I would assume you put it all in a computer and it determines which words appear how often, what the alphabet is, etc.

But is this a difficult thing to do? If not, what makes this manuscript so much harder than other dead languages?

Also if it was written by a Spaniard why is it in some strange language nobody has heard of?
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Old 09-17-2018, 12:36 PM
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You pretty much can't do it unless you've got a Rosetta Stone, Behistun inscription, etc., or if you know it's related to a known language (like with Mayan.)
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Old 09-17-2018, 12:49 PM
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How difficult would it be for modern scientists to decipher a book written in a dead language?

I would assume you put it all in a computer and it determines which words appear how often, what the alphabet is, etc.

But is this a difficult thing to do? If not, what makes this manuscript so much harder than other dead languages?

Also if it was written by a Spaniard why is it in some strange language nobody has heard of?
Many attempts have been made to use computer analysis to decipher the MS. None have had any success. Here is one of many previous threads on the MS which includes discussion of a previous decipherment that concluded that it was in Hebrew or a related language. Another analysis has concluded that the text has some meaning, that is, it is not just random. However, no one has succeeded in matching it to a known language that results in a translation that makes any sense.
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Old 09-17-2018, 03:56 PM
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Old 09-17-2018, 04:05 PM
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I must recommend the Codex Seraphinianus, which may be a spoof, send-up, or homage to the Voynich Manuscript.

One wonders what scholars 500 years from today would make of this if only one copy survived.
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:57 AM
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A totally pointless and irrelevant objection. Not one of the women in the MS look as if they are Mexican/indigenous, which is my main point. Can you point to one single illustration that appears to be of Mexican indigenous origin? If not, my point stands.
I wasn't disputing that the "deciphering" of the code is wrong, merely stating that your interpretation of that particular picture is about as good as the "decipherers" interpretation of the botanics. Which it is. And I'll offer you a trade: you come not-murder these IT folks here who insist in treating their users as if they were babies (ass-wiping included) and I spend a couple of days looking over the Voynich.
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:13 PM
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Well, the code has been cracked once again. This time it is in Turkish.
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:36 PM
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Some day in the distant future, scholars will have a field-day with my kid's home-made "comic books".
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:59 PM
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Well, the code has been cracked once again. This time it is in Turkish.
Amazingly, the researcher in question is Turkish himself!

I wonder how long it will be until the manuscript has been conclusively identified as being in every possible language on Earth.
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Old 11-03-2018, 06:04 AM
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Well, the code has been cracked once again. This time it is in Turkish.
In other news on that site, the Inca structures were built by aliens. Also ads for "Atlantis found" books. Wake up, sheeple!
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Old 05-15-2019, 11:51 AM
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And yet another claim to have deciphered it, this one apparently peer reviewed.
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Old 05-15-2019, 12:26 PM
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My preferred explanation is that it is a work of "outsider art" by someone who was learned but mentally ill.



This would explain why the plants correspond to no known species, the elaborate astrological illustrations, and the obsessive illustration of hundreds of naked women. The text is in some private invented language and alphabet, which would give it the appearance of a real language but make it completely undecipherable. The hidden meaning existed only in the creator's mind.
And just to emphasize that outsider artists can indeed create amazing works, look at the man who was practically the definition of the term, Henry Darger:
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Henry Joseph Darger Jr. (/ˈdɑːrɡər/; c. April 12, 1892 – April 13, 1973) was a reclusive American writer and artist who worked as a hospital custodian in Chicago, Illinois.[1] He has become famous for his posthumously discovered 15,145-page, single-spaced fantasy manuscript called The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What Is Known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion, along with several hundred drawings and watercolor paintings illustrating the story.[2]
A single man, working alone over a period of decades, created a richly detailed illustrated novel over 15,000 pages long. The Voynich Manuscript is fewer than 300 pages.
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Old 05-15-2019, 12:49 PM
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With respect to the link Commasense gave, either it is a monumental breakthrough or a researcher with an overactive imagination. Given enough material, it is possible to match anything with anything, and this appears to be what he has done. Time will tell if this is anything more than matching Nostradamus' "predictions" to actual events.
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Old 05-15-2019, 02:16 PM
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And yet another claim to have deciphered it, this one apparently peer reviewed.
It seems like a break through to me. We know so little about the proto-Romance language. I hope funding is secured to properly interpret the entire document. It would become evident if this new approach actually works.

I'm impressed with the words in proto-Romance that are still found today. That's what you'd expect to find in a precursor to Romance languages.
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Old 05-15-2019, 02:26 PM
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What is the next logical step?

Can limited funding be found to research and test this approach to interpretation of the manuscript?

How do they get independent verification of the work?

I know this early article is peer reviewed.
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Old 05-15-2019, 02:46 PM
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The next logical step is to roll your eyes at this hyperbolic bombast and wait until this thread is bumped for the next person who decoded the manuscript. (Given past patterns, it should be only a few months to wait.)
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Old 05-15-2019, 03:19 PM
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https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full...4.2019.1599566

That's the actual article, and seems legit.
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Old 05-15-2019, 03:34 PM
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Wouldn't proto-Romance predate the manuscript by 1000 years or so?????
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Old 05-15-2019, 04:07 PM
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https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full...4.2019.1599566

That's the actual article, and seems legit.

It is the same damn thing as every other "decoding"--someone claims that they are a sooper genius* who has discovered a few words, then says that someone else needs to come along and do the other 99.9 percent of the translating. Same circus, different clown.



* "Although the purpose and meaning of the manuscript had eluded scholars for over a century, it took Research Associate Dr. Gerard Cheshire two weeks, using a combination of lateral thinking and ingenuity, to identify the language and writing system of the famously inscrutable document."
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:06 PM
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It is the same damn thing as every other "decoding"--someone claims that they are a sooper genius* who has discovered a few words, then says that someone else needs to come along and do the other 99.9 percent of the translating. Same circus, different clown.



* "Although the purpose and meaning of the manuscript had eluded scholars for over a century, it took Research Associate Dr. Gerard Cheshire two weeks, using a combination of lateral thinking and ingenuity, to identify the language and writing system of the famously inscrutable document."
He actually translated quite a bit, if you read the article.
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:19 PM
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https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full...4.2019.1599566

That's the actual article, and seems legit.
The author does not seem terribly familiar with the historical development from Latin to the modern Romance languages. He seems to be matching words at random to the modern languages, without any attempt to contextualize the languge of the manuscript itself. On the other hand, the argument about the script seems like a good one.
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:46 PM
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It is the same damn thing as every other "decoding"--someone claims that they are a sooper genius* who has discovered a few words, then says that someone else needs to come along and do the other 99.9 percent of the translating. Same circus, different clown.



* "Although the purpose and meaning of the manuscript had eluded scholars for over a century, it took Research Associate Dr. Gerard Cheshire two weeks, using a combination of lateral thinking and ingenuity, to identify the language and writing system of the famously inscrutable document."
Yeah, color me skeptical, as well.
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Old 05-15-2019, 06:05 PM
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An article about this.
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Old 05-15-2019, 07:21 PM
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The next logical step is to roll your eyes at this hyperbolic bombast and wait until this thread is bumped for the next person who decoded the manuscript. (Given past patterns, it should be only a few months to wait.)
Pretty much. Why anyone would believe an extraordinary claim like that is beyond me. I mean, I guess it sells more papers or gets more views if the article is "VOYNICH MANUSCRIPT DECIPHERED!!!!" as opposed to "LATEST VOYNICH MANUSCRIPT CLAIM." But, come the fuck on, at this point (actually, well before this point), nobody should believe any initial claim that the manuscript has been deciphered, much less by some guy with a fortnight of free time on his hands.

I mean, hey, who knows? But I see no reason to get excited every time the manuscript has a new translation the instant it's made public until there's an adequate period of time to digest and critique the information, as every single other time, it's come out to be total BS.
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Old 05-15-2019, 07:35 PM
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Hell, even Ancient Origins dot net isn't buying it.
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Old 05-15-2019, 07:47 PM
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I’m boxing way outside my weight here but wouldn’t there have to be a proto-romance language?
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Old 05-15-2019, 07:55 PM
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https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full...4.2019.1599566

That's the actual article, and seems legit.
How so, "legit"? A quick scan shows absolutely nothing about methodology, nor any description of how the "translations" were confirmed.

I don't know how Romance Languages conducts its peer-review, but I would point out that "peer-reviewed" doesn't mean "correct."
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Old 05-15-2019, 08:03 PM
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I’m boxing way outside my weight here but wouldn’t there have to be a proto-romance language?
The "proto-Romance" language was Latin. AFAIK, the various Romance languages evolved separately in different regions, based on different Latin dialects and different local influences. There wasn't a "proto-Romance" language that extended across Europe that would have included all of the forms found in later descendant languages.
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Old 05-15-2019, 08:12 PM
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i know what it said...... it was the directions on how to build a time tunner for the new dinosaur train .......
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Old 05-15-2019, 08:14 PM
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How so, "legit"? A quick scan shows absolutely nothing about methodology, nor any description of how the "translations" were confirmed.

I don't know how Romance Languages conducts its peer-review, but I would point out that "peer-reviewed" doesn't mean "correct."

There should be a rule that before you can claim to have broken the code you must provide some significant number--say, 20--fully translated, coherent pages from the manuscript.
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Old 05-16-2019, 07:44 AM
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Hell, even Ancient Origins dot net isn't buying it.
As far as a skeptical attitude, that one is barely in the ballpark. It takes more of a "wait & see" POV, which is the right way to approach anything new.
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Old 05-16-2019, 08:27 AM
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A single man, working alone over a period of decades, created a richly detailed illustrated novel over 15,000 pages long. The Voynich Manuscript is fewer than 300 pages.
Paper is cheap and widely available. Vellum, historically, has been neither cheap nor widely available.
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