“Alien Embryo” has just now put forward a new transcription (and translation) of the ‘Michitonese’ on page f116v of the Voynich Manuscript. Without any further ado, it is:-

Pot leber u mon poti fer
Mihi con dabas tetar tere tum altos portas
Sic mar, sic mar vic alta maria
Valde ub vento mi (g?) almi (ho?) .

Bring the cup, (pot, cauldron) that it may be drunk on the mountain
To give me the right to rejoice at the gates of the high
It (the mountain?) marks, it marks the victory by the high seas,
Very much my blessing under strong winds.

Long-suffering Cipher Mysteries regulars will no doubt recall Esther Molen’s f116v transcription and translation, along with Edith Sherwood’s crinkly Italian take on the top line (“povere leter rimon mist(e) ispero”, “Plain letter reassemble mixed inspire”).

There’s also Marcin Ciura’s reversal of michiton oladabas to reveal the Czech-like “sa badalo No Tichim” (‘was studied by No Tichy’). And of course, the grand-daddy of them all is William Romaine Newbold’s “michiton oladabas multos te tccr cerc portas”, de-nulled into “michi dabas multas portas”, and then translated into the broadly English-like “To me thou gavest many gates”.

I’m not going to try listing all the others or I’d be here all night (and for what, really?)

Personally, I don’t buy into (or even like very much) any of these transcriptions: I’ve written here plenty of times about how I think most of the text on f116v has apparently been overwritten by a later owner, making transcription a hazardous process, let alone translation. But still people keep on trying… =:-o

12 thoughts on “YAMDTATTH (“yet another michitonese decipherment to add to the heap”)…

  1. Diane O'Donovan on April 21, 2012 at 11:30 am said:


  2. Diane O'Donovan on April 21, 2012 at 2:22 pm said:

    .. I like that one.

  3. Chambers on April 22, 2012 at 12:40 am said:

    Translation is mine. And the second line should be “Mihi con (ora) dabas tetar tere tum altos portas.” Ora is Latin for either the “seacoast” or “pray.” The recurring words for sea, seacoast, mountain, wind, all seemed too striking to be a coincidence. All spaced properly and put together it told a coherent, if ambiguous, narrative. Sea, Mountain, Wind, and the word for pot, kettle, or cauldron… Maybe something to do with alchemy and the four elements, who knows.

  4. bdid1dr on April 22, 2012 at 10:00 pm said:

    So, Nick (and others who might still be interested), have you been able to check out the “coincidence” of Esther Molen’s translation of folio 116 “michiton……. being very similar to the wording of Kircher’s “prayer” before each of his publications?

    Further question: Have you yet been to compare Kircher’s use of the michiton page to translate any other phrases/labels/script in the VMs.

    If you’d like me to, I could scan Stanford U’s presentation of Kircher’s “Mundus Subterraneus” – where he first uses that phrase. If it should be the Rene Zandbergen has already done that, please indicate with a simple yea or nay.

  5. bdid1dr on April 22, 2012 at 10:21 pm said:

    “The phrase” begins:

    Cherish liber…………….and continues with:

    In a desire to………….

    Because I was online and had only a brief period of time available, I did not take the time to write Kircher’s prayer fully.

    I also remember when Esther presented her translation of the michiton …la…babble, I immediately recognized the greeting. I now direct you to Esther’s page, if you question my memory. Also note that at least one other person backed her up with some additional, supportive, translation.

    Have you yet been able to use the Michitonese “dialogue” to translate the rest of the VM. I’m hoping that we will all be pleasantly surprised, if so.

  6. bdid1dr on April 25, 2012 at 10:41 pm said:

    BTW: If you don’t find Esther’s link (at top of Nick’s discussion) you can find her link in Nick’s February 2012 monthly archives.

  7. bdid1dr on April 27, 2012 at 10:58 pm said:

    In lieu of michitonese, I direct y’all to some “tools” for translating/transcribing the rest of the manuscript:


    I’m only going to add one detail that I found on another page: The Volscian dialect uses the Cyrillic ‘C’ BACKWARDS, so it looks much like a question mark — it is NOT; it represents the sibilants in any word.

    The other character “p” represents the “kw” sound.

    Put folio 116v aside, and concentrate on the scripts that are commenting on the baths, botanicals, pharmaceuticals (which actually are working with dried plant parts to make meds), astronomical/astrological (Reed Johnson’s been doing some research here). There is a wealth of info “out there” in cyberspace. Oh, if only the WEB had been available to me during my med studies!

    Nick, THANK YOU, for your forum! Need I rephrase in Volscian? Will Greek do? Evharisto! Italian? Grazie………T’chukran!


    If I could, I would demonstrate. There is only so much I can do “online”. I do love “show and tell”.

  8. Diane O'Donovan on May 19, 2012 at 4:24 am said:

    Nick, I’ve just come across this footnote – may reflect on date, as well as context – maybe. It includes what appears to be an entire paper devoted to the mihi-michi issue during the post 1430s period.

    (quote begins)
    Whereas in the 1430s, early humanists such as Leonardo Bruni had still defended continuing the medieval style ‘e’ for ‘ae’ etc. (cf. Hans Baron, From Petrarch to Leonard Bruni : Studies in Humanistic and Political Literature [Chicago and London, 1968], pp. 219-223: [see] “Bruni’s Spelling: the Michi-Mihi Controversy
    and the Use of Diphthongs”), Lorenzo Valla in his Elegantiarum linguae latinae libri VI (1440ff., first printed 1471) had already pleaded for a return to correct classical spelling and usage(cf., i.a., Mariangela Regoliosi, Nel Cantiere del Valla. Elaborazione e montaggio delle “Elegantie”[Rome, 1993]
    (quote ends)

    f/n 5 pp.358-9
    Angela M.V. Fritsen, ‘Testing “Auctoritas”: The Travels of Paolo Marsi, 1468-69’, International Journal of the Classical Tradition, Vol. 6, No. 3 (Winter, 2000), pp. 356-382.

  9. I finally solved that “michiton..” expression.

  10. Joachim: what I wrote here in 2012 still stands – “I think most of the text on f116v has apparently been overwritten by a later owner, making transcription a hazardous process, let alone translation”. So while I applaud your perseverance, I rather doubt your f116v transcription (and everyone else’s too).

    If we could get a better (multispectral or Raman) scan of this page, then I think it really would be “game on” as far as transcribing and even translating it. But until such a time, I believe that f116v will stay what it is… a codicological mess. 🙁

  11. Tricia on June 17, 2013 at 9:40 pm said:

    Mailing list says its German ‘without any doubt’

  12. José Antonio on December 20, 2015 at 5:48 pm said:

    Canonis Avicennae should be the reference book for a new transcription (and translation) of the ‘Michitonese’ on page f116v of the Voynich Manuscript.
    The first line could be ” per lebet semen juniper(us),” which is accordance with the thoughts of that book on fertility and its treatment with herbs and plants, The drawings sugest a method as such: first the plant, then the animal on which it is tested and finally the woman who will be receiving the product of the potion.

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