The first words of the Triangular Book, and what becomes its identification in libraries and catalogues, are in Latin:
.::. Ex Dono
Comitis St. Germain
Qui Orbem Terrarum
“Presented as a gift by the wisest Count of St. Germain, a man who has traveled the world.”
This is not a simple introductory statement. Within the words, an encrypted message hides, unseen unless one knows where to look. When the characters in each line are counted, including the punctuation marks before 'Ex Dono' and the period in 'St. Germain', the number of letters corresponds to the first of the seven prime numbers. The line 'Qui Orbem Terrarum' contains sixteen letters, which equates to the third power of two repeated twice, suggesting a triangular prime number two. The second and third primes, 3 and 5, are absent here. However, three and five each have their unique significance in this work, as will be demonstrated later. The fourth prime is seven, constituted by 'Ex Dono' and the dot pyramid preceding it, while the fifth prime, eleven, is the number of letters in 'Per Cucurrit'. Thirteen and seventeen correspond to the letter counts of 'Sapientissimi' and 'Comitis St. Germain', representing the sixth and seventh primes respectively.
It's evident that this prime number encoding is a deliberate technique by the author. What remains unclear, though, is the rationale or purpose behind it. One could speculate that it's more than just a show of prime number knowledge. Given that these are the only Latin words in the entire text, they may form part of a larger cipher, the key to which might be hidden within the text itself.
Among the ceremonial elements detailed in the book, there's a series of invocations directed at a group of spirits identified by their names. These spirits mirror those in the 'Heptameron' of Peter D'Abano, with minor variations. Notably, there are 21 spirits named in the invocation, an odd number which is a multiple of three. Interestingly, there are also 21 letters in the Latin alphabet. It's plausible that these names serve as keys to the cipher suggested by the introductory statement.
These names are each inscribed in one of four distinct colors: black, red, green, or yellow. These same colors appear in the Ritual Figure, depicting the makeup of the magic circle, whose four sections are drawn in these colors. A triangle, extending into the region of these colored figures, sits at the center of the circle. Also written in these four colors are twelve spirit names, invoked during the ceremony. As there are 21 spirit names invoked in the quarters, these twelve names are summoned from the center of the circle. And, mirroring the 21 letters of the Latin alphabet, the cipher alphabet has 24 letters, two for each of the twelve names.
When assembled, it is conceivable to envision the formation of a decoding wheel, with twelve segments around the circumference and twenty-one radiating from the center like spokes on a wheel or slices in a pie chart. Just as the Ritual Figure displays a triangle pointed towards one of the four colors, these names may align with a decoding wheel to translate the seemingly Latin message into something more discernible in French. However, the exact method, the governing rule, and most crucially, the reason behind this, remains an enigma – a secret known only to the author.
-Contributed by John King