The Unsolved Mystery of the Shugborough Inscription, England

Shugborough Inscription

The Shugborough inscription is a random sequence of the eight letters, O U O S V A V V, which are framed between the letters D and M.

The Shugborough inscription can be found on the Shepherd’s Monument of the 18th century. Undoubtedly, the code letters had puzzled many of the linguistics and scientists as well over many years.

Since the 1740s, Shepherd’s monument is located on the grounds of Shugborough Hall in Staffordshire, which is situated in England.

Four figures are sculptured into its grey stone, and that is, a woman and three shepherds.

Rolling green hills and sunshine surround the sculpture that one can only expect to see in Paradise.

Where is Shugborough Inscription Found?

Also, just beneath the “The Shepherds of Arcadia” painting of Nicolas Poussin, there is a random sequence of ten letters etched on the stone, which forms some meaningful code. Also, those ten letters are DOUOSVAVV.

Shugborough Inscription
Shugborough Inscription

The Shugborough Inscription is considered one of the world’s most confounded and baffled words whose exact explanation is not yet found. Also, no one has succeeded in solving the mystery behind these random letters since now.

Many questions were asked to know the explanation behind the code word. Some were like

What is the actual meaning of the simple outwardly 10-letter text? Why was it sculptured on Shepherd’s monument?

Was it an explanation of undying love? Also, if the code is to locate something perplexing or if it was not a biblical reference?

These were some of the general questions that are not explained since now.

Is Any Clue Found that can Explain the Meaning of Ten Letters?

Shugborough Inscription decoder
Shugborough Inscription decoder

For the last 250 years, many geniuses, including Charles Dickens and Charles Darwin, had tried to solve the mystery behind that code, but everyone got failed to crack that word.

The greatest minds have to break the exact answer but gave up when no clue was founded.

Some people had also said that the word is an acrostic in which each letter stands for an entirely different word.

Massey Gave the Theory Behind those Sequence of Random Ten Letters

Keith Massey, a linguistic expert and Arabic and Latin teacher believed that he had got some mystified answer that could solve the puzzle behind the sequence of ten random letters.

Massey has used his broad knowledge of Latin to fill in the blanks between the ten letters.

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The theory given by Massey was like that the randomly seemingly letters “O-U-O-S-V-A-V-V” might stand for “Oro Ut Omnes Sequitur Viam Ad Verma Vitam,” which means that “I pray that all may follow the Way to true life.”

All thanks go to Massey that it had not cracked the meaning of that word, then that random word would remain uncracked for many years.

However, as Massey explains, many still believe that the word often letters that were coded for many years on the monument has no meaning in actuality.

The Shugborough Inscription code
The Shugborough Inscription code

They have a strong faith that the word was inscribed to fool others and also to mislead others.

The purpose of coding the eight letter word between the two letters is not yet justified.

There were many theories, concepts put to explain the meaning of the letters, but nothing was appropriately verified.

However, Massey was sure that he had solved the mystery with proper explanation.

He believed that the proposal put by him has a reasonable interpretation which was credible as well.

The solution provided by Massey was a straightforward and grammatical sentence.

Massey had explained that he offered the straight-to-the-point approach as an accurate and exact method. Moreover, he advised not to look for any of the more profound meaning long.

The Meaning Behind the Two Frame letters “D” and “M.”

Massey had also explained that the two ending letters D and M are the leading clues for the randomly written eight letters.

He believed that the two letters stand for “Dis Manibus,” which means that “mythical spirits of the underworld” inscribed on the different ancient tombs of Christian.

Shugborough Inscription solved
Shugborough Inscription solved

Massey had tried to find the connection between the Manes and Christian tombs. Also, I explained that this is the final clue to find the correct interpretation of the long and random series of the ten letters.

According to him, the Shugborough inscription was intended to be understood as the tomb’s memorial, which is composed in Latin.

The Consequence of Repeated V letter

He also explained that V is happening many times in the sequence of ten letters, which directly shows that the letter V indicates an important clue.

Moreover, he had compared the ten-letter sequence to the Bible passage and found that the letters were fit together entirely there.

Also, this was not only the theory given to explain the meaning of the ten letters. Many more mythical stories and theories like this were told to found the exact purpose of the letters.

Shugborough Inscription chiper
Shugborough Inscription chiper

The ten letters mysterious word had divided many of the researchers, scientists, historians, and so on with their different theories and explanations that contradict one another’s assumptions.

Also, one more expert AJ Morton came to explain the actual meaning of the word. He said that there is no real purpose of the ten-letter word to mislead anyone.

Some Famous Theories that were Found to know the Meaning of Ten Letters

There are many more theories that were given to explain the true meaning of the letters, and some of them are mentioned below:

  • The ten-letter codeword may represent a specific number in the form of Roman Numerals. Further inspection of Roman numerals’ ancient distinctions had shown that values of it could get assigned to each letter in the series of ten random letters, except U.
  • One theory is that the ten random letters OUSV can be pronounced as “Josef,” which refers to the Biblical prophet Joseph.
  • The random letters ending with two letters D and M, may represent the inhabitants of Scarborough at the ancient time in which the monument was constructed, referring to “Orgreave United with Overley and Shugborough Inscription, Viscount Anson Venables Vernon.

Many more theories were found to be given in the explanation of the code letters.


Shugborough Inscription No one knows perfectly if the actual meaning of the ten letters can be solved or not. Even some are also not sure that if there lays some sense of the word or not.

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