Tuesday, 30 August 2011
Having time away from all things Bessler while on holiday, allowed me time to think and mentally review many things I had speculated upon. One of them was Bessler's use of his pseudonym - Orffyreus.
I have spoken about the fact that Bessler was born with just one forename, Elias. About the time he invented his working wheel he adopted the pseudonym, Orffyreus, using the 'Albam' method - at the same time he added two additonal forenames, Johann Ernst. I think that the Hebrew 'Albam' method of encoding these names is familiar to everyone interested in this story. I had always thought that having two 'E's as his initials was meant to point to the numbers '5' or '55' which are present in encoded form seemingly throughout his publications. However there has always been a disquieting feature to this idea which has caused me some doubt as to my interpretation of it.
For a start in this case, the fact that Bessler used the Albam alphabetic substitution rather than alphanumeric susbstitution to obtain his pseudonym, suggested that the former is to be used and not the latter, in which case the fact that 'E' is the fifth letter of the alphabet is no more than a fortunate coincidence.
In addition, converting the intials J.E.E.Bessler through 'albam' results in W.R.R.Orffyres, and the 'W' is formed from two V's which, in Roman numerals, produces the number '55' again and to suggest that the two 'E's represent the '5's too, seems almost tautological (if there is such a word!). Seriously is it likely that Bessler would have used the letter 'J' for any other reason than as part of an albam code? He could have left the 'J' out and used alphanumeric substitution to get '55'. So the letter 'J' is important but so is the letter 'R' which is derived via the 'albam method from 'E'.
So the letter 'J' leads us to the letter 'W' which points to 55. Now if the letter 'E' is not deliberately included to point to 5, then it points to 'R', its albam equivalent. Bessler routinely signed his name with a large 'O', presumably short for Orffyreus; he included a dot in the middle so it could also represent his wheel. But then he added two letter 'R's, one on either side of the 'O', the left one pointing the wrong way. This appeared to represent a wheel supported by two 'R' shaped figures.
Artistic as this may seem, there has to be more to it than sheer artistic vanity. It was important enough to add new forenames to his pseudonym, and the number 55 was of great importance to him as is clear from the many occurences of it, so one must conclude that the letter 'R' was of at least equal importance. The only thing I can conclude from my own research is that it has to refer to the path of the weights. One weight moves through a short curved circle and the other one moves through a longer less curved circle.
I have my own theory about how this helps and I am writing my ideas out in detail and I will post them when they are done. I'm considering doing another video to explain graphically what I mean, but if anyone else has any thoughts about the letter 'R' and its meaning I'd love to hear it.
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