f71v 3. ZODIAC FOLIOS: GEMINI
|f71v, Gemini. Voynich Manuscript. Credit: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University.|
This folio is allocated to the month of May and the events for this month are shown below:
Mercury at greatest elongation east.
Total Solar Eclipse over central China
Penumbral eclipse of the Moon – barely perceivable
May covers the time of the total eclipse when SN 1054 may have been seen briefly at this time if it had already turned from distant star to supernova, it would have been located too near the Sun at this time to be visible in normal circumstances. The folios from now would give arms markers, which are very complex and are not covered at this time. The folio has one main marker which I suggest marks the path of the Sun with the total eclipse represented by the figures in the centre joining hands, the male representing the Moon and the female the Sun. The male Moon and female Sun interpretation is based on solar imagery in the manuscript (circle with dot in centre) being connected with some of the female nymphs. A male nymph seen chasing a female nymph who wears the solar symbol and holds a ring with crossed arms to form an analemma on f80r, and the male nymph approaching the female nymph on this folio as indicated below sugest that the male nymph is the Moon rather than the Sun. Although Male Moon gods and female Sun goddesses occur throughout the world, generally the Sun is male and the Moon female, however in astronomical terms the Moon chases (approaches and covers) the Sun which makes it technically more logical to represent the Moon as male in this context. Whether the male nymph is the Sun or the Moon (and vice versa) makes no difference to the interpretation of an eclipse being the subject matter here. Their arms are joined in such a way that when viewed from above they would form a figure 8 the analemma of the sun reinforcing the subject matter as solar. The figure at 10 O’clock in the middle circle of nymphs has both arms spread wide, as an arm marker this is not necessary, I suggest that nymphs in this position may also indicate a conjunction which may include solar or lunar eclipses as well as planetary conjunctions, these will be referred to as "Conjunction Nymphs". The figure at 10 O’clock is also aligned with the suggested path of the sun and the eclipse.
|f71v, Gemini. Voynich Manuscript. Credit: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Overlay by P. Han showing main folio marker and relevant points of interest.|
I suggest the sky is shown during the eclipse. The nymphs in the bottom left portion of the circles represent planets and are shown fully clothed, maybe indicating they are visible during the day when otherwise not. The only other clothed nymphs occur on the Aries and Taurus folios and the wearing of clothes may be a specific property the author has assigned to planets to distinguish them from stars at times, or with respect to their visibility in the sky. The observations of other folios leads me to suggest that the stars are always shown unclothed and moving clockwise, the planets may be shown clothed or unclothed and moving clockwise or anticlockwise which would mean that a planet may be mistaken for a star, but I suggest that fully clothed or anti-clockwise facing nymphs should always be taken to be planets.
The outermost circle of the nymphs at first sight looks like it may refer to the elongation east of Mercury. The first nymph is standing on what looks like about 20 lines, the value of the greatest elongation of Mercury (East or West) is between 18° and 28°. The actual value for the Sun-object angle for Mercury on 7th May 1054 AD from China is 22°, which ties in roughly with the number of lines. However, the lines also coincide with the position of SN 1054 at the time of the eclipse on the Equatorial Coordinate System, its Declination being +20° above the Celestial Equator. Being only a few days apart the celestial bodies near SN 1054 are in pretty much the same positions, apart from the Moon being absent and Mercury approaching the horns of Taurus. Even an attempt at translation of the labels could refer to either event, the last label fitting a number of possibilities that refer to the Sun, a star, an eclipse, or Polaris (as the basis of the Equatorial Coordinate System). The imagery of the head ware of last nymph also fits comfortably with either a radiating Sun/star, eclipse corona or Polaris radiating directions from the North Pole.
|Credit Redshift6. Star map of constellation Taurus on 10/05/1054, central China.||Credit Redshift6. Close up of the location of SN 1054 in relation to the Equatorial Coordinate System.|
|f71v, cropped, Gemini. Voynich Manuscript. Credit: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Overlay by P. Han with suggested possible translation of labels of the outer circle of nymphs and the lines under the top left nymph.|
Now, the central figures on the folio holding hands may be doing
just that, holding hands in a general sense and indicating an eclipse. However,
the way the hands and arms are entwined forms a definite figure 8 pattern. It
had long been noted that the sun did not always reach its highest point at noon
consistently sometimes crossing before or after depending on the time of year
and the variation in time from a sundial has been known of for as long as sun
dial (or gnomen) have been used, but until the advent of accurate time pieces
its exact formula and the figure 8 could not have been known in accurate detail.
Jean Paul Grandjean de Fouchy is generally attributed the conception of the
figure 8 analemma curve around 1740 which is far to late for this theory being
set in the early to late 1600’s, much less a manuscript from 1400. The figure 8
curve is a representation of the “equation of time” which is a calculation of
the difference in time as measured by sundials and mechanical clocks and relied
on the invention of accurate mechanical clocks. Christiaan Huygens, astronomer,
physicist, mathematician and clockmaker invented the first pendulum clock around
1657, this was extremely accurate and in 1665 he wrote a treatise on the use of
clocks to determine longitude east and west., a concept which had been
considered since Santa Cruz in 1520 but the absence of accurate clocks delayed
it becoming a reality. The calculation of longitude relied on the observation
time observed from a local sundial and converted to local time then compared
with clock time from a known latitude, this was determined to be set in 1675 at
the location of the Greenwich observatory. By 1675 all the elements were in
place to accurately display the passage of the Sun over the year as the figure 8
curve known as the analemma, and this time frame is within the considered latest
date of my theory which culminates with the addition of new constellations by
Johannes Hevelius in 1687.
Further to this, if the small lines under the leftmost nymph mark Declination, the four figures to the left of the rightmost nymph may represent the RA (longitude) of SN 1054, which was approximately 4 hours.
These are the suggested meanings of items of interest on the folio.
|f71v, Gemini. Voynich Manuscript. Credit: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Overlay by P. Han showing main points of interest.|
Below is a NCP star map showing the correlation of the Sun, Moon and planets to the nymphs on the folio that I have suggested are planets. Next to it a star map centred on the NEP (which may be more logical for a solar event) and a mirror image of the same folio which follows the curves of the star map better.
|Credit Redshift6. North Celestial Pole centred star map, 10/05/1054, Central China./f71v, cropped, Gemini. Voynich Manuscript. Credit: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University with overlay by P. Han showing main points of interest. Comparison of actual positions of the Sun, Moon and planets on star map with suggested positions on folio f71v.||Credit Redshift6. North Ecliptic Pole centred star map, 10/05/1054, Central China./f71v, cropped, mirror image, Gemini. Voynich Manuscript. Credit: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University with overlay by P. Han showing main points of interest. Comparison of actual positions of the Sun, Moon and planets on star map with suggested positions on folio f71v.|
The central circle of nymphs has one nymphs that is in line with the folio marker, the "Conjunction Nymph" and the central figures suggesting it is of importance in relation to the eclipse and very close to, even if not on the Ecliptic, which SN 1054 was. The three nymphs on the right side of the inner circle may relate to Al Hecka, Al Nath and SN 1054. Al Hecka (Zeta Tauri) is the Chinese T'ien-Kuan, the "Heavenly Gate" through which the Emperor and high officials entered Tien (heaven) on their death. This star has a reputation in Arabic for being a malevolent and unlucky star. Al Nath (Beta Tauri) was once counted as part of Auriga (Gamma Aurigi) but later became designated as Beta Tauri. Al Hecka and Al Nath at the ends of the bull's horns mark very specifically the location of SN 1054 and in China SN 1054 was specifically related to Al Hecka in the records of the guest star "SN 1054", and described as "guarding" T'ien-Kuan. Alternatively, the "blob" like star may be SN 1054 as it fades away after the eclipse.
|Credit Redshift6. Star map of constellation Taurus on 10/05/1054, central China. Overlay by P.Han showing SN 1054 in relation to Al Nath and Al Hecka and the eclipse.|
See also, f57v for further investigations
into the eclipse.
Copyright © 2010 P. Han