Hoaxing the Voynich Manuscript, part 6: Planning the word structure

By Gordon Rugg

In this series of articles, we’re imagining that you’ve gone back in time, and that you want to produce the Voynich Manuscript as a hoax to make money. We’re looking at the problems and decisions you’d face, and at the implications of various possible solutions.

The first article looked at why a mysterious manuscript would be a good choice of item to hoax. The second article looked at some of the problems involved in hoaxing a text that looked like an unknown language, from the linguistic viewpoint. The third examined the same subject in more depth, and the fourth discussed the choice of materials, going into some detail about the choice between using freshly-made or already-old vellum. The fifth was about the layout, structure and contents of the book.

This article is about how to create a plausible-looking structure for the individual words in the text that you’re going to produce. We’ll look at the choice of script, and how to combine the words, in later articles.

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