Da Vinci Code, and still no end…
No, this time it is not about pregnant virgins, bloodthirsty opus dei crimes or the holy grail, but a music mystery of the Da Vinci Code that a music teacher and former military code breaker says he has cracked. The secret, he claims, lay hidden in the Scottish chapel that appeared in “The Da Vinci Code.”
Thomas Mitchell told The Telegraph that he and his son, Stuart, also a musician, began studying symbols carved on the walls of Rosslyn Chapel 20 years ago. They were especially interested in 213 carved cubes bearing flowers, diamonds, hexagons and other symbols in the building’s Lady Chapel. The pair believe the tune was encrypted because knowledge of music could have been considered heretical.
“I was obsessed by these symbols,” Mitchell said. “I was convinced they meant something.”
Mitchell, who served as a code breaker with the RAF during the Korean War, said that he and his son had a “eureka moment” after years of puzzlement.
Mr Mitchell realised the patterns on the cubes seem to match a phenomenon called cymatics or Chladni patterns. Visualisation of cymatics can be done by sprinkling sand on a metal plate and vibrating the plate, for example by drawing a violin bow along the edge, the sand will then form itself into standing wave patterns such as simple concentric circles. The higher the frequencies, the more complex the shapes produced, with certain shapes having similarities to traditional mandalas and crop circle designs.
Different frequencies produce different patterns such as flowers, diamonds and hexagons – shapes all present on the cubes.
Cymatics was explored by Jenny in his 1967 book, Kymatik (translated Cymatics). Inspired by systems theory, the work of Ernst Chladni, and his medical practice, Jenny began an investigation of periodic phenomena but especially the visual display of sound. He used standing waves, piezoelectric amplifiers, and other methods and materials.
The two men have brought the music back to life using instruments from the Middle Ages, adding words from a contemporary hymn to finish the piece, called The Rosslyn Motet.