Speculations and Alternative History of the Voynich Manuscript Prophecies






This web page concerns thirty-nine ancient prophecies each containing four lines of verse. Translated into French and irregularly scattered among 942 prophecies, they were published in 1590 under the name of Michel Nostradamus.

No one knows who wrote those thirty-nine prophecies. Several medieval texts of note attribute them to King Solomon of Biblical fame. Others, mainly obscure texts written in Hebrew, attribute them to Elijah the Prophet or to Metatron, an archangel described as the heavenly scribe. A few sources attribute them to the Holy Spirit or to Satan.

Like Merlin, the wizard of King Arthur fame, King Solomon was linked to the field of magic and, moreover, the prophecies were allegedly found under the ruins of his Temple during excavations undertaken in the 1120s. Around the year 1135, Geoffrey of Monmouth recorded brief and abstruse remarks on more than two hundred prophecies of which only thirty-nine have survived. He attributed authorship of the prophecies to Merlin (Prophetiae Merlini). Indeed, granted that the author of these prophecies (within the prophecies themselves) insinuates that he was present in England during the sixth century, Merlin (as an assigned pen name) seems like as good a choice as any for referring to the author of the Voynich Manuscript (VMS) prophecies.

Before proceeding any further, let's clarify something: It is only the text section (the final 23 pages) of the VMS that contains prophecies. Like the botanical pages that precede them, the text pages employ a code that contemporary cryptographers are unable to break. The code, however, was broken in the late 16th century and the decoder kindly inscribed notes into the VMS that leave little doubt that those pages encrypt the original Latin of Merlin's Prophecies.


A Morten St. George Investigation


There is reason enough to suspect that the VMS prophecies were written by King Solomon of biblical fame: the prophecies make three allegorical references to plants, for which somebody may have found parallels with the Song of Solomon. Meanwhile, legends speak of ancient scrolls found underneath the ruins of Solomon's Temple by the Knights Templar (circa 1120). If these scrolls contained our prophecies, there would be a motive for attributing authorship to Solomon.

The main reason for believing that those scrolls could have contained the prophecies is that during the following decade, circa 1135, a Welsh monk wrote a synopsis of the prophecies, some three to four thousand words long, in Latin. There are so many links between that synopsis and the surviving prophecies, such as unexpected words and concepts found in both (Adrianne, Aquilon, Arabes, Aries, Boreas, et cetera), that there can be little doubt that this monk had sight of the VMS prophecies.

Though the monk surely knew that the prophecies came from Solomon's Temple, for reasons unknown he does not attribute authorship to Solomon but rather to someone else. Possibly he rejected Solomon as author based on what Merlin Prophecy VI-2 had to say (the number comes from Nostradamus):

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number VI-2

In the year 580 more or less,
One shall await a very strange age:
In the year 700 and 3 skies in testimony,
Many nations one to five shall make change,

In view of fact that these dates (the earliest dates given in the prophecies) are in ascending rather than descending order, one must assume that they are CE and not BCE, thereby reducing the chances that Solomon was their author. And then there's Merlin Prophecy VIII-76, apparently the first one written by the Prophet, which must also be taken into account:

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number VIII-76

More ‘Macelin’ than king in England
Born in obscure place, by force he shall attain the empire:
Of loose morals, without faith, without law, the ground shall bleed,
His time approaches so near that I sigh.

One can only guess at this, but it looks like the monk merged the name ‘Macelin’ with the name Myrddin, a legendary poet and madman from his Welsh homeland, to arrive at the author of the prophecies: Merlin, calling his synopsis Prophetiae Merlini and at the same time giving a name to the English king mentioned in the first verse: Arthur. Speaking of madmen, legend has it Merlin himself went mad at the battle of Arfderydd in the year 573, which conveniently brings us close to the year 580 (more or less) given in the first prophecy.

Before moving on, we should note that the final verse of Merlin Prophecy IX-31 can be construed as alluding to the ground below Solomon's Temple (where the prophecies were presumably found): "Dans temple à Pasques abysmes enfondrez," Within the Temple at Passover abysses founded. It is noteworthy that beyond the exotic plants of the VMS and the place of discovery, we have a textual consideration from within the prophecies for associating them with King Solomon.

Later in the 12th century and continuing into the 13th century, commentaries on the VMS prophecies appeared in southern France, in a mystical book called the Sefer ha-Bahir and in isolated fragments (including one that briefly describes thirty-two of the prophecies attributing a ‘Path of Wisdom’ to each), all written anonymously in the Hebrew language. When and where Merlin's prophecies passed into the hands of the mystics is unknown. A Spanish biblical commentator who greatly impacted the mystics visited England during the 1150's and may have had contact with the Welsh monk during the final days of the latter's life.

Once again the prophecies are not attributed to King Solomon. Instead, we find an indication that the mystics thought the author was the archangel Metatron (the heavenly scribe) and other indications that they thought the prophecies were written by the prophet Elijah and/or delivered by him in his Chariot, presumably in a return descent to Earth during early medieval times. In the mystic circles of southern France, Merlin's prophecies were sometimes referred to as "the revelations of Elijah."

In the 20th century, those medieval writings in Hebrew were investigated by cabala pioneer Gershom Scholem who, in his book about mystic symbolism, cites the Bahir as saying: "Thus God said: I love the gates of Zion when they are open. Why? Because they are on the side of evil." Scholem exclaims: "This much is certain: the last thing we should expect to find in a work of Jewish piety is the notion that the ‘gates of Zion,’ through which, to the Jewish mind, the creative energy of Israel is communicated and in which it is concentrated are ‘on the side’ of Evil."

Before criticizing the mystics, Scholem could have tried asking himself a few questions. Was it possible for evil to fight against the great enemies of Zion, such as ancient Rome? And what did they mean by evil? For that he could have turned to another of his books: "We learn that Satan is the ‘north wind’ (section 107), a power that acts from the north." So now let's see what Merlin Prophecy II-99 has to say about Boreas, the north wind:

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number II-99

Roman land that interprets the augury,
Shall by Gallic people be much vexed,
More Celtic nation shall fear the hour,
Boreas, the army having pushed too far.

Everyone knows that the Gauls fiercely fought the Romans, but perhaps less known is the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest where a large Roman army was wiped out having pushed too far into Germany. Note that the ‘north wind’ had another name, which was Aquilon, and before the Romans, the Babylonians were the great enemies of Zion. Let's now look at Merlin Prophecy X-86:

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number X-86

Like a griffin shall come the king of Europe,
Accompanied by those of the North,
Of reds and whites shall conduct great troop,
And they shall go against the King of Babylon.

And once again evil fights the enemies of Zion. Elsewhere on the Bahir, Scholem notes "Moses Cordovero (ca. 1569) thought it possible that the book was composed before (!) the destruction of the Temple." Scholem's exclamation point aside, Cordovero makes sense: granted that the Bahir includes extensive commentary on Merlin's Prophecies and that those prophecies were found underneath the ruins of Solomon's Temple, it follows that the Bahir had to have been written either a) after excavation by the Knights Templar, or b) before the destruction of the Temple!

In the year 1244, a mountain-top fortress in southwestern France, the last stronghold of a heretical religious sect, came under siege. Per historical accounts, just before the fall of the fortress, a few of the heretics made a daring escape down the steep slopes, carrying with them the ‘great treasure’ of their religion. Of the heretics who were unable to escape, some two-hundred were burned alive in a giant bonfire in a field below the fortress.

There are three reasons for believing that the great treasure that escaped this siege were Merlin's Prophecies:

i. By legend, Christian Rosenkreutz was educated by those heretics. Granted that Rosenkreutz, per another investigation, was found to be a fictional character created by one of the decoders of the VMS, the matter is relevant.

ii. Merlin Prophecy VIII-83 apparently alludes to those heretics:

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number VIII-83

The greatest sail out of the port of Zara,
Near Byzantium shall make its enterprise,
Loss of enemy & the friend shall not be
The third to two shall make great pillage and taking.

The prophecy tells the story of the infamous Fourth Crusade where the Crusaders, without funds to pay Venice for maritime transport, captured the Christian enclave of Zara for her as payment. Afterward, instead of continuing to Egypt as planned, the Crusaders proceeded to plunder the Christian city of Constantinople (formerly called Byzantium).

Though there appears to be no surviving historical record, this prophecy would have made the pope who instigated the Fourth Crusade the laughingstock of southern France. Thus, it is not surprising the Pope Innocent III (‘the third’) initiated a second crusade (‘to two’) to wipe out the heretics of southern France and once again there was great pillage and taking.

iii. By virtue of the following drawing found on the foldout behind folio 86 of the VMS:

Voynich Manuscript Depiction of a Heretic Fortress

We see the besieged mountain-top fortress and its steep slopes on the top of this drawing. A single coned tower with balcony and windows matches an illustration of this fortress from an independent medieval manuscript. Below the fortress, we see a field where the number of stars and glyphs add up to just over two hundred, that is, the number of heretics that were burned in that bonfire. Below the field, we see a depiction of the flames of that bonfire.

Heretical writings were destroyed by the Inquisition so there is no way of knowing for sure who these heretics thought was the author of Merlin's Prophecies. Most likely, they attributed authorship to the ‘Good God’ that they worshiped, contrasting him with the ‘Evil God’ worshiped by everyone else in Europe.

At this point, let's clarify that no one, not even a heretic, is likely to believe that their god would write something using mundane earthly materials. It had to be the scrolls, as much as the words, that caused them to think of divine origin. In a passage from the first prose introduction to the published prophecies, attributed to Nostradamus but more likely written by one of the heretics some two or three centuries earlier, we read (17th century translation):

"And although this occult Philosophy was not forbidden, I could never be persuaded to meddle with it, although many Volumns concerning that Art, which hath been concealed a great while, were presented to me, but fearing what might happen, after I had read them, I presented them to Vulcan, who while he was a devouring them, the flame mixing with the Air, made an unwonted light more bright then the usual flame, and as if it had been a Lightning, shining all the house over, as if it had been all in a flame."

This passage insinuates that Merlin's scrolls had light-emitting qualities. On mysticism of the late 12th century, Scholem finds "we are dealing here with something really new, with revelations of the prophet Elijah ‘and the appearance of the holy spirit in our academy’;" one can imagine that the concept of the holy spirit was derived from scrolls (prophecies here called revelations) that emitted a glowing light and, indeed, it is possible to surmise that a noted mystic of that epoch was temporarily blinded from staring at it too long.

Meanwhile, the "supernatural glow of light" apparently led to confusion between a written Torah (revelation written in heaven) and an oral Torah (revelation transmitted orally to Moses on Mount Sinai). It seems the mystics believed that the black fire of the oral Torah (functioning like a stencil) covered the white fire (primordial light) of the written Torah to delineate the words. Scholem, unaware of anything written in heaven, concludes "there is no written Torah here on earth … There is only an oral Torah … the written Torah is a purely mystical concept." But there is ample reason that the written Torah did in fact exist here on Earth. It was Merlin's Prophecies.

From 1244 to the late 16th century, there is no historical record of the VMS prophecies anywhere in Europe. Radiocarbon aside, scholars are unable to find anything in the internal content of the VMS that would convincingly date it later than 1244. Precedence has been found for the zodiacal drawings, and there is no depiction of any recognizable royal or religious personage, no depiction of the Black Death that wiped out perhaps half the population of Europe in the 14th century, and no depiction of the Hundred Years War so vividly displayed in other manuscripts of that epoch. Even the VMS plants cannot be associated with anything in Europe. The heretics who escaped the siege of 1244 simply vanished, and so did Merlin's Prophecies.

Turning our attention to faraway places, we found references to prophecy in the chronicles of the conquest of Peru, including the following (17th century translation): "And herein he was the more troubled upon remembrance of the Prophecy of an ancient Oracle, which foretold them, that after such a Number of years, and after the Reign of so many Kings, there should arrive strange Nations, never before seen in those parts, who should take their Kingdom from them, and destroy their Government and Idolatrous Religion."

Some believe that in order to fulfill this prophecy, the vast armies of the Inca, numbering in the tens of thousands, voluntarily submitted themselves to slaughter by a small group of Spaniards. In any case, let's now compare the Inca Prophecy with Merlin Prophecy V-92 (in the Roger edition, it was misnumbered surely to affirm the gap below which, while allowing geometric games to be played on the numbers, does not alter the translation):

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number V-92

After the seat [throne] held for seventeen years,
Five shall change in such revolved term,
Then one shall be elected [or chosen] of the same time,
Who of the Romans shall not be very conformable.

The chronicles date the Inca Prophecy to the time of Viracocha Inca, who reigned from 1410 to 1438, a period which surprisingly corresponds quite well with the range given by radiocarbon for dating the VMS, 1404 to 1438. And indeed, there would be five more Inca kings when the Spanish (Roman Catholics) arrived.

Note that Viracocha Inca himself was not the "ancient Oracle": the chronicles say that the prophecy was "delivered by Revelation from his Father the Sun." But the chronicles are far from consistent on this point, at times attributing the prophecy to the Sun god and at times attributing it to the creator-god Viracocha. Perhaps Merlin Prophecy II-28 was the source of this confusion:

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number II-28

The penultimate of the surname of the prophet,
Shall take Diana for his day and repose:
Far he shall wander by frenetic head,
And delivering a great people from impositions.

Apparently, Merlin's Prophecies wish to reveal the name of their author but want us to undertake some research in order to ascertain that name: we need to identify the final two persons (or kings) who had the author's name or who adopted it for their own name, and we are only provided with a few obscure details regarding the first of last two, such as the fact that he died on a Monday granted that Diana was the Moon goddess (which could also explain why the mystics assigned feminine qualities to the Moon!).

Here's another citation from the chronicles, reportedly being Viracocha Inca's last words:

"Likewise you are to observe, that in me the number of twelve Kings is completed; and I further make known to you, that in a few Years after my departure out of this Life, that this new Nation will invade you, and then will be accomplished that which our Father the Sun hath revealed, that they shall become your Lords and Masters … and lastly, I leave my Peace with you, for I am summoned by my Father the Sun to rest and repose with him."

It seems Viracocha Inca was quite egotistical and, wishing to make himself the topic of the prophecy, he envisions that the five of second verse of V-92 comes out of (in such revolved term) the seventeen of the first verse, leaving twelve. Note that his "rest and repose" reminds us of the "day and repose" of prophecy II-28.

A study of Andean dark cloud cosmology leads us to surmise that the Sun god (when his home the Sun sets at the end of the day) might then by night connect himself with the first constellation to rise along the southeastern horizon, namely, the serpent nebula that stretches across the Milky Way. Serpents were called Amaru (previously spelled Amaro) in both the Quechua and Aymara languages. Thus, it looks like Viracocha Inca made a big mistake by adopting the name of Viracocha to fulfill the prophecy: he simply picked the wrong god. He should have adopted the name Amaru, as did the last king of the Incas (Túpac Amaru I), who had his head chopped off in the year 1571 (our calendar) and placed on top of a pole in the Plaza of Cuzco. For many days the Incas came from the four parts of the empire to honor their king, and they never forgot his revolt against Spanish rule.

In any case, the Inca Sun god now joins King Solomon, Merlin the Prophet, Elijah the Prophet, the Good God, the Holy Spirit, the archangel Metatron, and Viracocha as postulated candidates for authorship of Merlin's Prophecies. After first endorsing the Holy Spirit, the second prose introduction to the published prophecies proceeds to add Satan to the list. Clearly, no one knew who wrote Merlin's Prophecies and everyone is just guessing. Lest we be accused of schizophrenia, we will not reveal that the prophecies themselves tend to support the Inca Sun god as their author.

There is, however, very little likelihood that the French heretics of the 13th century migrated to Peru which lies on the opposite side of the Americas from France. Moreover, protein analysis of the VMS parchment reveals that its underlying source was the subfamily Bovinae (cow) of which there were none in Peru. But in North America, including parts of Mexico, there were bison, a very close relative of domestic cattle even to the point of interbreeding.

This leads us to a logical conclusion: the VMS (the conduit of Merlin's Prophecies) was compiled in Mexico by converts to the heresy. We say converts rather than descendants because those heretics did not believe in procreation and hence they would have had no descendants. But they certainly strove to make converts and, like they did for converts back in Europe, would have taught them how to read and write and how to make parchment (a skilled task). Thus, native Americans wrote the VMS. They conserved the writings of the European heretics, diligently copying the prophecies onto fresh parchment along with the writings and drawings depicting the European history of the heresy, plus those pages depicting life in the Louisiana swamps after first arrival in the Americas. And the native Americans, known to have a deep interest in herbal medicine going back many centuries, would have conducted the herbal research reflected in the VMS.

Note that the American botanist Arthur O. Tucker has associated the VMS plants with Mexico. Beyond plants like jalapeño peppers and dozens more, the vast correlations with Mexico include VMS depictions of animals such as the armadillo, vials whose pattern of alternating colors remind us of what we see, to this day, on Mexican textiles, and, last but not least, found throughout much of Mexico: volcanoes, and even a smoking one!

Voynich Manucript Depiction of a Stump

Or could that be a native American tepee? Nope. This VMS drawing is now believed to be depicting a stump holding the souls of dead people awaiting reincarnation, where blood spit out from the mouth on top initiates the rebirth.

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number X-56

Royal prelate his "baissant" all shot up,
A great flow of blood shall come through his mouth,
Anglican reign by reign breathes anew,
Long time dead alive in "Tunis" like a stump.

This prophecy led the Protestant heretics as well as the Judaic cabalists of the 12th and 13th centuries to believe in the transmigration of souls.

Returning now to the New World, the New Atlantis (a book relevant to our theme) refers to "Mexico, then named Tyrambel," and also to "Peru, then called Coya," and continues "they both made two great expeditions: they of Tyrambel through the Atlantic to the Mediterranean Sea, and they of Coya, through the South Sea, upon this our island." The part of Mexico called Tyrambel (presumably where the VMS was written) remains to be determined but Coya (generally spelled Colla but pronounced Coya) is a real word that refers to the southern part of greater Peru covering Lake Titicaca and the ancient city of Tiwanaku. Note that "our island&quo; could very well be the island of Great Britain as, from Peru, you must first sail into the South Sea to reach it. In fact, the first four words of the New Atlantis are "We sailed from Peru."

There seem to be three possibilities for the transport of the VMS prophecies from Mexico to Peru: i. Heretic missionaries brought the VMS from Mexico to Peru not long after it was written, and then a Spanish adventurer named Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa acquired it in Peru during the 16th century; ii. Sarmiento acquired the VMS in Mexico and brought it to Peru around the year 1557, thus the Inca Prophecy was retroactively invented as an excuse for the rapid demise of the Inca; and iii. Sarmiento brought the VMS to Peru circa 1557 (or possibly following a brief layover in Mexico in 1568/9) but another copy of the prophecies was brought from Mexico to Peru during or prior to the time of Viracocha Inca (who died in 1438).

Chemical analysis of VMS pigments has revealed the probable use of atacamite (a comparatively rare mineral) for green coloring. This mineral was named after the Atacama Desert, which lies near Peru, but one cannot assume that the coloring was added later: atacamite is also found in Arizona, which lies near Mexico as well as near bison herds. Presumably, out of 17th-century efforts to attribute the VMS to Roger Bacon (an English friar of the 13th century), any and all pages directly depicting native Americans were removed from the manuscript. Only a few items that may have been unfamiliar to them, like the armadillo, managed to slip through.

In 1567, Sarmiento became second in command of a fleet that had set out from Peru to explore the South Pacific. This expedition discovered the Solomon Islands (today a member state of the United Nations) in the western Pacific and, granted that Sarmiento was in possession of the VMS (which contained prophecies), one can legitimately ask if there was any connection between the prophecies and naming of those islands. Indeed, Sarmiento claimed to have foreknowledge of "islands and continents" (changed to "islands or continents" in the New Atlantis) in the South Sea waiting to be claimed for Spain. Let's have a quick look at Merlin Prophecy X-25:

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number X-25

Only part of the first line concerns us here: To open passage to Brisanne, which perhaps can be taken as inspiration to explore the seas. Note that this name has eight letters, just like Bensalem (the name of the island utopia in New Atlantis) and that these two words match on three letters: B _ _ S A _ _ _. Thus, it is safe to presume that the Solomon Islands were in fact named in honor of Merlin's Prophecies (deemed by some to have been written by King Solomon) but this does not seem possible until some twenty years after the discovery of those islands, when the VMS prophecies were decoded and definitively linked to Solomon.

Meanwhile, some historical sources tell us that the navigator Mendaña (first in command of the fleet) named them "Isles of Solomon" with regard to gold extracted from Solomon's Mines, but gold mines were never found on those islands. A two-volume work called The Discovery of the Solomon Islands informs us that Mendaña "established nothing more than that his islands were well suited to agriculture and a promising hunting-ground for slaves" and that "the name [Solomon] is not found in any of the MSS, except Sarmiento's, which appears to have been written some time after the termination of the voyage from a collection of papers found in La Plata." Originally, the islands were individually named (mostly after saints) and collectively known as "the Western Islands " of the Southern Ocean.

Cryptologists may have noticed that the second line of X-25 is written largely in Spanish that could also be the underlying VMS language. As for the mysterious el tago (recorded as tagus in the writings of the Welsh monk), it likely refers to someone from Toledo, a city built on the Tagus River. Curiously, there is reason to believe that, following the fall of the heretic fortress in 1244, Merlin's Prophecies wound up in Toledo where they were secretly translated into multiple languages by the Escuela de Traductores de Toledo. Also, apparently, a new system of encryption was created there to protect the combined translations and later, in the New World, copied into the VMS.

Between 1582 and 1584, Sarmiento defected to England where he became a prisoner and then good friend of Sir Walter Raleigh (a Raleigh letter attests to this) and where he had a least one very lengthy conversation with the English Queen. It is hard to imagine that he could have avoided contact with William Cecil, Elizabeth's right-hand man, who appears on the cover of The Herball or Generall Historie of Plantes (see our Rosetta Stone essay for more information) opposite the unidentified poet laureate. Perhaps through Cecil, or maybe through Raleigh's contacts including the French ambassador, Sarmiento met and joined forces with the poet and two others to create a secret society:

"After this manner began the Fraternity of the Rosie Cross; first, by four persons onely, and by them was made the Magical Language and writing, with a large Dictionary, which we yet dayly use to Gods praise and glory, and do finde great wisdom therein; they made also the first part of the Book M."

No, by Book M. (period included) the Fama (17th century translation) is not referring to the VMS but to Les Propheties de M. Michel Nostradamus which conceal the VMS prophecies attributed to Merlin. The "first part" of that book would be the Roffet edition of 1588 (possibly early 1589 on our calendar) containing one prose introduction and 588 stanzas in total. The first complete edition (containing 942 stanzas including a second part of 300 stanzas preceded by another prose introduction) was published by Rousseau in 1590, then subsequently revised by the authors and, in the name of Rigaud, backdated to 1568.

"Also our building (although one hundred thousand people had very near seen and beheld the same) shall for ever remain untouched, undestroyed, and hidden to the wicked world."

The Fama (1614) ends with this pessimistic outlook and possibly there is a hint of despair therein. Were the prophecies failing to come true? Two prophecies were dated 1607 and one 1609. By 1614, the Nostradamus prophecies had gone through numerous editions and a hundred thousand people may indeed have seen them without recognizing the prophecies of Merlin hidden therein. Their ‘building’, like Solomon's House in the New Atlantis, has to refer to the structure that holds the VMS prophecies, namely, the Nostradamus publication, a book.

Returning now to Sarmiento, our conclusion that he brought the VMS from Peru to London is not as far-fetched as it may seem. In 1572, Sarmiento wrote a book called Historia de los Incas which remained unpublished until the early 20th century having been ‘discovered’ not long before the discovery of the VMS. But it turns out that the initial chapters of this manuscript were a major source of inspiration for the second prose introduction to the Nostradamus prophecies (textual comparisons reveal numerous equivalent concepts and phrases), thus Sarmiento is solidly linked to the VMS.

In and of itself, Sarmiento's history of the Incas may provide us with some useful information. For example, from what he tells us we are able to construe that Indi (now spelled Inti), meaning "pajaro del Sol," Sun bird, became recognized as a great Prophet having flown around the Andes over the course of several decades making one successful prediction after another. Sarmiento dates Indi to the epoch of Mango Capac, the first Inca who became king in 565, and Cinchi Roca, the second Inca who died in the year 675: "Murio en el ano de seiscientos y setenta y cinco anos de la natividad de Nuestro Senor Jesucristo, siendo rey de Espana Bamba y emperador Leon cuarto, Papa Donus." To confirm the accuracy of his dates, Sarmiento correlates them with European kings and popes who reigned at the same time. In case you didn't notice, these dates correspond fairly well with the 580 (more or less) to 700 range that we saw in Merlin Prophecy VI-2.

According to Sarmiento, Cinchi Roca, accompanied by his stone idol called Guanachiri Amaro, lived in the House of the Sun, called Indicancha (today called Coricancha, House of Gold), so this edifice in Cuzco had to have been built during the sixth or seventh centuries, likewise, perhaps, all the megalithic structures of Peru were built at that time. This would be some six to eight hundred years earlier than what the history books tell us, but note that the primary objective of the Spanish historians, other than Sarmiento, was to suppress Inca worship of their Sun god and to do so by means of demeaning and truncating Inca history. It seems the Spanish never found any Incas capable of moving stones weighing up to a hundred tons or more nor anyone who could even explain how to move such stones, so it is ridiculous to think those structures were built in the recent past.

Inca Sun bird on the Gate of the Sun

Here, on the Gate of the Sun in Tiwanaku (Sarmiento spells it Tiaguanaco), we see a depiction of Indi, the Inca Sun bird, likely made contemporaneously with his presence in Andes during the seventh century. However, placing aside those scepters tipped with bird heads, this thing looks nothing like a bird. Are we to believe that it was able to fly over to England without wings? It is by no means assured that Indi can remain a viable candidate for authorship of the VMS prophecies.

Curiously, one of the prophecies can be viewed as reinforcing Inca beliefs that their Sun bird came from the celestial Sun. Merlin Prophecy V-81 begins with the words: "L'oiseau royal sur la cité solaire," The royal bird over the city of the Sun, and the second line of reads "Sept mois deuant fera nocturne augure," Seven months before shall make nocturnal augury, where the word nocturnal could be what linked the Sun bird to the aforementioned Serpent nebula. Nonetheless, it is not always easy to distinguish beliefs and customs that arose in ancient times from those resulting from heretic missionaries and the prophecies that they brought to Peru. For example, the sacred ‘Virgins of the Sun’ seem ancient but might be a reflection of heretic beliefs in celibacy as well as in an elevated status for women.

Returning again to Europe, the history books tell us that Sarmiento ran into a streak of bad luck, finding himself locked up in a Huguenot dungeon in southwestern France from late 1585 to early 1589. Similarly, everyone who worked on decoding the VMS and on writing nine hundred predictions (to mask Merlin's Prophecies) had to be someone whose whereabouts cannot be verified for some significant portion of that time frame, such as said to have been absent from university, or went wandering to escape the plague in his home town, or gone off tiger hunting in Egypt, or whatever.

It is clear that an enormous effort went into producing Book M., Les Prophéties of M. Michel Nostradamus, but why did they do it? The only rational explanation that we can think of is that they thought Merlin's Prophecies were genuine, that they accurately predicted future events. They therefore wanted to cast the prophecies into the distant future (the last date given in the prophecies was 1999) when they might be useful to people then alive to find a way to prevent the great calamities predicted therein. Perhaps erroneous perceptions that those prophecies had already had some degree of success influenced their thinking.

From our point of view, we need only note that some years ago a paranormal skeptic by the name of James Randi convincingly demonstrated that the famed Prophecies of Nostradamus (which include the VMS prophecies) were a charlatanism that expressed no real foresight of anything. One of the many tactics for deception identified by Randi was to write so ambiguously that each prophecy could be applied to many historical events.

For example, in The Voynich Manuscript Investigations of Morten St. George, we explained how a Merlin prophecy may have furnished a strategy for defeating the Spanish Armada. (It is unknown what additional assistance could have been provided by Sarmiento, who just a few years earlier was placed in command of a fleet to hunt down Sir Francis Drake on the open seas.) Let's have another look at Merlin Prophecy V-35:

VMS Prophecy Nostradamus Number V-35

By free city of the great sea Saline,
That carries again the stone to the stomach,
English fleet shall come under a drizzle
To grab a branch, from the great one: open war.

But, historically, the Armada was not the only conflict between England and a Spanish-speaking country. In 1982, England fought a war against Argentina over the Falkland Islands (a place that was not yet discovered when the prophecies were published). Just for fun, to illustrate the multiplicity of applications, let's see how V-35 can be applied to the Falklands War using a Spanish translation of the first verse:

Por ciudad libre de la gran mar Salina,

The Argentines have their own name for the Falkland Islands, which is Malvinas. The mar Salina, switching emphasis to the noun mar, comes close.

VMS Prophecy Allusion to the Malvinas

With Malinas we are only missing the letter v in front of the letters in. Curiously, Merlin Prophecy IX-49 says "Le sel & vin luy seront à l'enuers," the salt and wine shall be to the inverse, surely inspiring the "vin & sel" in the last verse of stanza V-34 which in turn is taken as a signal to translate the "Seline" of the next verse (the first verse of V-35) as Salty rather than Crescent. Thus, the sel (salt) connects with the Seline whereupon the vin allows the insertion of a v in front of the in of malinas, giving us:



We imagine that the capital S in Salina should refer to the name of a specific sea, such as the South Atlantic, or Sudatlántica in Spanish.

That carries again the stone to the stomach,

Let's now turn our attention to the language of the other combatant, England, and replace the estomach and pierre of the original French with their English equivalents:

Qui PORTe encores à l' STomach la STone,

PORT STanley was the capital city of the Falklands and site of the final battle of the Falklands War.

Note that the República de Buenos Aires (the free city of the first verse) first seized possession of the Falkland Islands in the early 1800s, so the seizure of 1982 was indeed a repeated (the French encore) event.

English fleet shall come under a drizzle

Drizzle is a translation of the French bruine, a word that derives from the Latin pruina which referred to wintry weather. And fleet is our translation of classe, a Frenchification of the Latin classis which referred to a land army or, more often, to a fleet, here chosen because of the sea in the first verse. Hence, the English fleet sails into freezing weather which is thought to have been a major factor leading to the rapid defeat of the Argentine troops entrenched on the Islands.

To grab a branch, from the great one: open war.

To grab a branch of what? Well, the English fleet sailed into the cold to take back a branch of the British Empire, ie. the Falkland Islands.

The French du grand (masculine gender) cannot modify ouverte guerre (feminine gender). So from the great what will come open war? Well, from Great Britain will come the open war. Indeed, the open war (the first spilling of blood) occurred when a British submarine, surreptitiously guided by American satellites, torpedoed an Argentine cruiser trying to flee the conflict zone, killing a few hundred sailors.

And finally, what about the stone to the stomach? To understand this one, we need only look at a map:

VMS Prophecy Allusion to the Falkland Islands

Today, no one can be fooled into thinking that Merlin's Prophecies reflect one iota of genuine knowledge of the future, but back in the 16th century, occult sciences like astrology and alchemy afflicted kings, queens, and even great scholars.



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