One historical cipher mystery I haven’t really put a lot of time into is the “Oak Island Mystery” or the “Money Pit Mystery” (perhaps I’ll post about that another day). One reasonably well-known Oak Island researcher is Keith Ranville, a Cree “self-taught researcher born in Manitoba“, who in 2005 “relocated to Nova Scotia to further research and advance his theories on the subject“: if you’re interested, here’s a fairly extensive description of Ranville’s main 2007 Money Pit decryption claim.

But now he’s crossed over into our world, and this month (September 2010) put forward his own tentative interpretation of the Voynich Manuscript posted in his “Oak Island Treasure Mystery Canadian Journal of New Research (Latest News)“. Which is that the Voynich might possibly be a Silk Road pimp’s log book / accounting book, artistically camouflaged to resemble pictures of spices and drugs (the herbal pages) and persian rug designs (the circular designs on the nine-rosette page), with individual prostitute availability somehow encoded into the zodiac pages.

As Keith Ranville notes, “Al Capone had a bookie accountant” to track all his various criminal activities (that was how Capone was eventually caught) and “maybe this is the same kind of principle going on with this elaborate voynich manuscript?” You’ll have to make up your own mind on this: don’t shoot me, I’m merely the runner messenger…

9 thoughts on ““Silk Road prostitution” Voynich theory…

  1. I see…

  2. On second thoughts: looks like rain
    *looks about, whistling aimlessly*

  3. Diane: nice day for it, whatever it is. 😉

  4. Peter Wood on September 18, 2010 at 9:08 pm said:

    “Se non e vero, e molto ben trovato” as the writer of the VM might have remarked.

  5. Well, perhaps he’s not so very far from the mark. I went back to see if I’d included a reference to terms used for a particular type of boat on Socotra, and since there is also a recent article by J.J. van Rensburg to which I can now refer, I’ve updated the post to include the relevant terms.

    I probably shouldn’t have been reminded of the matter, if it hadn’t been for Nick’s posting this.

    If I may – here’s the link to my post, with the ref to van Rensburg added.

  6. @ Peter: you suppose the ‘writer’ spoke modern Italian; is that writer as scribe, or as auteur, or do you believe both to be the same?

  7. Diane: I thought it was a quote from the (decidedly non-modern) Giordano Bruno?

  8. Peter Wood on September 21, 2010 at 6:53 pm said:

    The Oxford Book of Quotations gives the saying (admittedly with accents which I can’t show in this email format) as being “early 16th century”. It might well have been around before then; who knows? It’s certainly not modern Italian; sorry if I misled anyone. As to the identity of the VM’s author, I think Nick has the right of it in that it could be anyone of a hundred otherwise unknown Renaissance individuals. Roll on time travel and then maybe we’ll know!

  9. Rick A. Roberts on November 25, 2015 at 9:04 am said:

    I have been interested in the ” Oak Island ” Mystery for many years. Some time ago, I was looking at the piece of rock that had some characters inscribed on it that has not yet been deciphered. I believe it to decipher to, ” EUESCAV “. I think that the deciphered message is, ” YOU SEE CAVES “. Also, supposedly there was a sheepskin parchment that was retrieved when drilling. It had the letters ” vi “, ” ui ” , or ” wi “, on it. Could this have been a letter of Marque signed by King William III and given to Captain William Kidd ?

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