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Re: Jacobus, Raphael, and Schaffner

Stolfi wrote:
>     > [Rene:] The literature kept in box B at Yale paints a very clear
>     > picture. There is a copy of a letter from Voynich to Prague
>     > inquiring about Jacobus and Ferdinand, and there is a reply from
>     > Prague giving all the details Voynich used in his Philadelphia
>     > presentation. In fact, this reply from Prague is from March
>     > 1921, which is exactly one month prior to the above-mentioned
>     > presentation (!)
>     > 
>     > In this first letter Voynich spells Jacobus' name incorrectly
>     > and is confused about which Ferdinand is meant by Dr. Raphael.
>     > There really is no doubt in my mind that Voynich had never heard
>     > of Jacobus before.
> Well, I must accept your word fo it, but I am still unhappy.

Just my opinion, and you're entitled to yours! :-)

There is nothing controversial about either Jacobus' ownership signature
or Raphael's quote in the Marci letter. And they do fit together.
That's why I (personally) don't see any reason to doubt that they can
both be taken at face value.

> In the reproduction of the "signature" that I have seen
>   http://www.dcc.unicamp.br/~stolfi/voynich/vms-images/f1r-bottom-rz.gif
> (I believe it comes from D'Imperio, is that right?),

No, from Voynich, 1921.


> I suppose that you were able to see a lot more in the actual
> photograph at Yale. Otherwise, the fact that Voynich was able to read
> Jacobus's name in any recognizable form seems a bit miraculous.

Yes, the pictures that are kept at Yale show the signature quite
clearly. One cannot read every letter equally clearly, but the
name is there.

> One more thing: Recently you pointed out to me another letter from
> Marci to Kircher (APUG 557 f067r) whose image is in the Kircher site.
> I can make out the word "Theorema" --- and I think that Marci's "T"
> looks suspiciously similar to the "T" of Jacobus "signature"! 

The handwriting from many people of that time show similarities.
E.g. Baresch and Moretus. (They are very similar in some aspects only!)

Hopefully we may be able to locate some original handwriting by Jacobus.

> [...] (For Kircher and the
> subsequent Jesuit owners, in particular, Jacobus must have been a very
> obvious candidate for either role, given the preminence that he is
> given in Jesuit chronicles.)

That is an interesting observation. Kircher might just about have
heard about him. I always assumed that outside Prague he was as obscure
then as he is now.
Cheers, Rene