Similaries between The Voynich Manuscript and outsider art by people with schizophrenia

Originally published at: Similaries between The Voynich Manuscript and outsider art by people with schizophrenia | Boing Boing

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Scientifically interesting, emotionally sad.

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I don’t know what the Voynich Manuscript means, but that’s okay. It is an eminently beautiful work, and part of its beauty is in its mystique. I would rather never know its secrets than learn that its secrets are something mundane. The magic is in the possibilities.

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Fascinating, and seems quite truthy. However, I’m not yet convinced that Hill’s repetitive signature in that one instance indicates typomania. My first thought at seeing that was that he was playing with the typographic ambiguity of his last name.

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The best thing about the Voynich Manuscript is that it gets us thinking and chewing on different ideas. Schizophrenia may not be the correct answer, but it’s an interesting idea.

There are also different intensities of mental illness, so it may fit somewhere in the spectrum even if we don’t have a perfect analog to compare it with.

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I’ve always liked the notion that an early Renaissance conman set out to swindle some duke or prince with a nonsensical “mystical” text to add to a ducal library, and that he succeeded.

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Definitely my favorite too. I’m sure I read some proposals for who might have done it—Drake?—but couldn’t find the article or post.

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In my head, it has a Monty Python “Life of Brian” vibe; “Oy; the Duke can afford a few quid! In fact, he’d be doin’ an act of charity by contributing to those less fortunate, namely us.”

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Obligatory, and my favourite interpretation by far.

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