The Voynich Codex

  • Jules JanickEmail author
  • Arthur O. Tucker
Part of the Fascinating Life Sciences book series (FLS)


The Voynich Codex consists of 102 folios, each composed of two pages (recto and verso), but also includes pasted pages referred to as foldouts. Adjusting for 14 missing folios and multiple pages in the foldouts, the work is equivalent to about 262 pages. By convention, the work is divided into sections referred to as: Herbal (131 plant images plus text), Pharmaceutical (228 images of plants or plant parts with apothecary jars), Balneological (nude nymphs singly or in groups, many cavorting in pools with strange plumbing), Astrological (signs of the zodiac surrounded by nymphs), Cosmological (magic circles including combinations of the sun and the moon, planets, and stars), and Recipe (pages of text that may be medicinal recipes, poems, or incantations). The illustrations have a limited palette of blue, red, green, and brown. Carbon dating of the vellum is early fifteenth century, but the date of the text and illustrations remains unknown.


Astrology Carbon dating Cosmology Folio Herbal Magic circles Medicinal recipes Pigments Voynich 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Horticulture & Landscape ArchitecturePurdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA
  2. 2.Department of Agriculture & Natural ResourcesDelaware State UniversityDoverUSA

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