5th March 2015: Mystery Writing

Published on 5th March 2015

Mystery writing

While cataloguing some of Carl Linnaeus the Younger’s manuscripts today, I came across this slip of paper.

Carl Linnaeus the Younger’s manuscripts (slip of paper)

Like many stray notes, it is undated, and contains rough notes – in this case, a numbered list of plants related to horticulture, written mostly in Swedish apart from a few Latin names (notes are made on spinach - ‘spinat’ – and fennel – ‘fänkål’; on borage –‘borago’- and basil – ‘basilica’ for example).

undecipherable handwriting

On the reverse, however, is text in an almost undecipherable handwriting.

undecipherable handwriting

Some legible words (such as ‘nudda’ – ‘touch’ – on line 11) indicate that the language is most probably Swedish. One of the Linnean Society staff suggested it looked like the hand of a very old person. Your can take a closer look on this pdf.

If anyone has any ideas about the content, can decipher some words, do contact me at Isabelle@linnean.org!