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Conclusions, Conjectures, and Future Studies

  • Jules Janick
  • Arthur O. Tucker
Chapter
Part of the Fascinating Life Sciences book series (FLS)

Abstract

Botanical, zoological, and geological evidence (volcanoes and the presence of boleite crystals) have convinced us that the Voynich Codex is a sixteenth century Mexican manuscript. Despite partial success in deciphering some nouns and Nahuatl cognates, the bulk of the manuscript remains undeciphered, suggesting that other Mesoamerican languages or a mixed synthetic language might be involved. The illustrator and author of the codex are conjectured to be Juan Gerson and Gaspar de Torres based on the name of the former and the ligated initials of the latter embedded in the first botanical illustration. Iconographic evidence demonstrates that the Voynich Codex fits the genre of work by Nahua-trained authors and artists in the sixteenth century. Evidence to the contrary was not convincing, including alternative plant identifications, the medieval clothing of the Sagittarius archer in the zodiac, swallowtail merlons in the monastery fortress at Huejotzingo, and interpretations of astronomical circles. We conclude that the Voynich Codex is an encyclopedic work, which was in large part a medicinal herbal that was expanded to include religious (ritual bathing, kabbalah), astrological (zodiac), and cosmological (astronomical observations) features. It remains an important historical document of sixteenth century Mesoamerica that was unfiltered by Spanish or Inquisitorial censors.

Keywords

Herbal Gaspar de Torres Geomorph Iconography Juan Gerson Merlon Monastery fortress Phytomorph Volcano Voynich Zoomorph 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Horticulture & Landscape ArchitecturePurdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA
  2. 2.Department of Agriculture & Natural ResourcesDelaware State UniversityDoverUSA

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