A new research article by Marcelo A. Montemurro and Damián H. Zanette, published in the Plos One journal suggests the Voynich Manuscript, a book written in a script no one has been able to decipher yet, does have a genuine message behind the writing.
The Voynich Manuscript, named after the Polish-American antiquarian who owned it from 1912 to 1930, is one of a kind: both the author and the language it is written in are unknown, and there are no other books or documents written in the same script. The manuscript was probably written in the 15th century and, so far, researches have been able to divide it into sections (Herbal, Astrological, Biological, Pharmacological, and Recipes), based on the drawings found along its pages. Because no one has been able to understand the meaning behind what is written on the 104 folios bound to leather thongs, the sections are only an estimate of what the drawing could be about. In fact, in the herbal section, the longest of them all, none of the flowers and plants pictured seem to exactly correlate with existing plants. The other pictures include pipe-like structures and astrological images and maps.
Montemurro and Zanette’s work consists of a statistical analysis of the written text which focuses on the frequency, the pattern and the distribution of words. The results they have obtained show there are semantic networks underneath the writing which are similar to those in real languages. This would suggest that there is an encoded message behind the 40 different symbols contained in the pages.
Despite what research shows, many insist on regarding the text as some kind of joke with no real meaning at all. In fact, none of the researchers have completely excluded this possibility yet because they lack the empirical support to do so. To prove this point, some have invented their own linguistic structures and built sentences which say nothing at all even though they look like plausible structures.
The book is currently owned by Yale University and it is part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library since 1969.