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VMs: Renaissance code necessity

> Another point: the 1440 cipher from Urbino
> Tristano Sforza's code from 1450

Reading these names triggered me about what Burckhardt writes about these

** For example Ferrara was full of spies, and the duke himself  read the
daily reports about strangers that the publicans had to fill out. In Bologna
every stranger had to fill in a coupon entering a gate to be able to leave
the city again. (p 48-49)

** In  Milan Filippo Maria Visconti was so afraid that everyone who entered
the castle was spied upon hundredfold, it was forbidden to stand near the
windows, so no signs could be given to outside persons. Everyone whou came
near the count was screened. He trusted no one, the Condottieri were
continually accompanied by spies, his diplomats were continually set up
against each other. (p 37)

** In the mid-14th century Padua had a fully developed bureau that provided
the citizens with passports. This was meant to enhance the duke's control
over the citizenry. (p 12)

The atmosphere of distrust, fear and continual plotting must have felt like
Moscow in the coldest parts of the cold war. Now I understand better why
strong ciphers were wanted in renaissance Italy. Could the VMS have been
written in this atmosphere?

And Burkhardt indeed does mention astrology, several times. More times than
he mentions astronomy :-)

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