Dos discursos de la cifra [manuscript].

Other Title:
De zifras
[Spain, ca. 1600]
82 leaves : paper, col. ill. ; 372 x 280 (279 x 180) mm. bound to 380 x 290 mm.
Ciphers -- Early works to 1800.
Cryptography -- Early works to 1800.
Tables (documents)
Manuscripts, Spanish -- 16th century.
Manuscripts, Spanish -- 17th century.
Manuscripts, Renaissance.
Manuscripts, European.
Two works on ciphers. The first is more theoretical and describes ciphers based on subjects such as arithmetic, non-Roman alphabets (Greek, Hebrew) and writing systems (Egyptian, Chinese, Japanese, the writing of Indians of New Spain), astrology, musical notation, geography, currency, orthography, armorials, emblems, and enigmas. The second is a technical description of 24 different methods of enciphering and deciphering, using numerous tables, volvelles, movable sleeves, and grilles. Most of the entries in the index at the end of the manuscript (p. 165-166), which is in the same hand as the text, refer to subjects in the first work. Written by a cryptographer in the service of Martin de Cordova, viceroy of Navarre (p. 5), and dedicated to Juan Fernandez de Velasco, Condestable de Castilla (p. 3), a Spanish official who held government posts in Italy.
1. p.5-6: Declaracion general de los dos discursos de la cifra.
2. p.7-66: Discurso primero: Theorica de la cifra.
3. p.67-163: Discurso segundo: Estampas, modos, o especies para scrivir en cifra.
4. p.165-166: Tabla de de loque contienen los dos discursos.
Ms. codex.
Title from caption title for preface (p. 5).
Pagination: Paper, i + 82 + i; [3-4], 5-78, [i], 79, [80-81, i], 82, [83], 84-120 (odd-numbered pages contain full-page illustrations and are not numbered), [121], 124, [125], 126, [127], 128, [129], 130, [131-133], 134, [135-137], 138, [139], 140, [141-142], 143, [144], 145-163, [164], 165, [166]; contemporary pagination in ink, upper outer corners.
Layout: Text pages written in 31 long lines.
Script: Written in cursive script by a single hand.
Decoration: 31 full-page illustrations (numbered Estampa I-Estampa XXXI) of keys to ciphers, in black, red, and green ink, including keys with string pointers (p. 95, 97), a movable sleeve (p. 125), volvelles (p. 129), and grilles (p. 131-133, 135-137). Full-page illustrations as well as small tables and examples inserted in text have simple decorative geometric frames. Rubrics, marginal headings, some initials and words, and pagination in red ink.
Binding: Contemporary Spanish calf; restored spine with fragment of early label (De zifras).
Origin: Written in Spain, possibly Navarre, ca. 1600 (examples dated 1591, p. 120-121; 1600, p. 108, 114).
Local notes:
Lawrence J. Schoenberg & Barbara Brizdle Manuscript Initiative.
Penn Provenance:
Sold by Martayan Lan, cat. 28 (Sept. 2001), no. 189, to Lawrence J. Schoenberg.
Deposit by Lawrence J. Schoenberg and Barbara Brizdle, 2011.
Cited in:
Described in Transformation of knowledge: early manuscripts from the collection of Lawrence J. Schoenberg (London: Paul Holberton, 2006), p. 47-49 (LJS 423).
Cited as:
Oversize LJS 423
Fernández de Velasco, Juan, dedicatee.
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