Cracking the Voynich Cipher

The paper Cracking the Voynich Cipher proposes a full decoding of the Voynich Cipher

The decoding is tested in the plant section of the manuscript. It reveals 104 plant names which are all found as one of the first words in each herbal text. The names found lead to plants with the same characteristics as the Voynich illustrations, and the names are closely related to vernacular plant names used in medieval England.

The Voynich manuscript is said to be the most mysterious manuscript in the world. For centuries numerous amateurs and professionals have tried to decrypt its text.

NOTE: The text contains Voynich characters. To be able to see them you need download the paper and install the font Voynich EVA Hand A on your computer. It is free for personal use.

The appearance of the herb wild pansy might have a light-colored lower part which can go pale blue and particolored, with sharp pointed splints along the flower. It is beautiful with light even bright complexion with a livid color which also divides. 

This edible flower stream let divide. It brings about the skill in meeting, of which mistakenly endow brightness through Key*, K-light stream** meeting, yet, it gains possession of good qualities from the K-stream. 

proposed translation of 1st paragraph f9v in The Voynich manuscript

* Key, abbreviated to K, might be interpreted as “that which guides and governs”, a controller or protector, also; that which explains and makes clear. Theologically Key was used figuratively for the power and authority og Jesus.

** The streams which connects the magical powers of heaven with earth seems to be is a central part of the manuscript.


My study of the Voynich manuscript started as a part of my ongoing sculpture project HummingHumming refers to songs without words, the sound of flying insects, or the dark and unperceivable hum from the Big Bang. The project was meant to explore how we experience reality without words. To me, the Voynich manuscript felt to be wordless with its unreadable text. The strange illustrations extended the limits for my imagination about how the world could be understood. 

The first time I saw an illustration from the Voynich manuscript was when I researched plant illustrations for Humming. The The first time I saw an illustration from the Voynich manuscript was when I researched plant illustrations for Humming. The illustration showed a plant which was totally strange and unidentifiable. At the same time, it was also familiar. I found it to be highly original, drawn with a free hand, and shaped with a lively and strong character. The text surrounding the plant was like a beautiful hum. 

I got caught by an intense and enduring curiosity about the world view the Voynich artist possessed. What kind of relation did the artist have to the plants? What knowledge of the plants did she or he possess? And why were they drawn this way? 

By time, the visual content of the manuscript got more and more familiar to me. I learned the forms of the plants, and the forms of the cipher, the shapes of the words, their spaces, their rhythms. After three years of visual studies, what started out as an exploration of a wordless existence, backfired. I found myself obsessed by and determined to find the meaning behind the words

Sculpture from Humming, marble and birch, 2021.

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