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VMs: Re: More shorthand trivia

Hi GC,

Speaking of wierd Baconiana (off topic for a millisecond), have
you ever viewed "Calligraphotechnia", by Richard Gething?  Bi,
tri, and quadraliteral cipher ditties, and more double letter
counts than you could wish for!  (Dedicated to Sir Francis Bacon
by coincidence...)

I'll try to check it out - it sounds like my kind of thing. :-)

I'm sort of at a loss for information on this topic as well.  What
further confuses me is that the "zieglographia" system these words
are found in doesn't resemble Shelton's earlier "tachygraphia",
but has many symbols in common with Bright's work.

That's the trouble with interdisciplinary research (AKA "falling through the cracks") - you don't know if you've already seen nearly everything (because there isn't much to see), or if you have yet to stumble onto a review article in an obscure journal with an 8-page bibliography, in a discipline where they just happen to call the same subject by an entirely different name. *sigh* :-/

I wonder how
difficult it would be to take a raw sample of either system and
try to "crack" it without knowing anything about how it works, or
even what language it's written in.  Not exactly how I'd want to
spend my weekend, I'm sure.

Hmmm... I think I'll be washing my hair that weekend. :-/

On top of it already, in English and in Latin.  Not necessarily a
scripture quote I think though, but something out of a prayer
book???  I'm downloading a bunch from this period.  These symbols
would probably still have the same meaning in Latin as in English.

One thing that I would point out is that if my gallows-as-a-frame-for-holding-crosses-in-space hypothesis holds some water (and I haven't been able to prove or disprove it yet), then the distinctive gallows on the 17 x 4 ring could well be equivalent to a steganographic "+++", presumably written differently to distinguish it from the "XXX" gallows.

As has been mentioned numerous times recently (in discussing the michiton oladabas page), this kind of thing was a common feature of invocations and/or prayers, so would fit in with where you're heading. "+++" would also probably mark the beginning/end of the sentence/phrase/whatever.

My guess is that the text on that ring is closer to necromantic invocations than to Biblical quotations... still, whatever it turns out to be, perhaps we're starting to crack this bit (at least)? :-)

BTW: I still see the four characters at the centre of f57v as Paymon and three other demons, and fit the diagram in with a magic circle tradition, rather than specifically as a volvelle (though I do suspect the astrological diagrams *are* volvelles, after a fashion). I asked Richard Kieckhefer about this possibility, but he wasn't aware of any visual representation of demons in magic circles.

Im really bugged by the fact that Shelton did an about-face on his
tachygraphia and produced the second book.  1650 is when Shelton
was supposed to have died.... wonder if this is another
all-to-common case of name theft.  All alien abduction theories
welcome at this point.

I'll see if I can determine anything about this from the Carlton Collection. It may turn out to be the only reliable/primary source for a lot of this stuff. :-/

Sometimes Microsoft's programs can be weapons of extreme terror
and mass destruction.

..."sometimes"? :-(

Cheers, ....Nick Pelling....