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Cryptogram Instructions

A cryptogram is a puzzle where a sentence is encoded by substituting the actual letters of the sentence with different letters or symbols. The challenge of the puzzle is to 'decode' the sentence to reveal the original English sentence.

Saidwhat cryptograms use either well known sayings, quotes or proverbs for our cryptogram puzzles. Each time you view a puzzle, you may notice that different letters are displayed - however the pattern of the letters is always the same. In other words, there is always a one to one substitution of a letter for another. In some puzzles, a letter may actually represent itself!

Here is a sample phrase:

njz ihbz ghq uzn njz ihbz ghq yaon

To solve a cryptogram takes practice, and the shorter it is, often the harder to solve. Here are a couple of techniques you can use to solve.

First, write it down on paper, nicely spaced out. Look for letters that occur most often - these are normally the vowels, and that which occurs the most is often the 'E'.

Above, you see a lot of 'Z's therefore this is probably 'E'. Write it in and try it. You see the first word becomes '??E' so is almost certainly 'THE'.

By writing in all the T's, H's and E's you then have an excellent base to work from, e.g.: "THE ???E ??? ?ET THE ???E ??? ???T"

Two and three letter words are often easy to guess - they are most often if, of, an, to, at, in, the, and, you, him, her...

Also look for repetition of words - above, it is clearly a phrase, and here the first, second and third words are repeated, hence think of phrases that make sense to be repeated.

Also many phrases will have the same letter repeated twice in a word, a useful pattern than can be used to give an insight into the answer.

The phrase above is 'the more you get, the more you want'. Above all you need persistence with cryptograms - you may find them hard at first, but be sure that all our cryptograms have been written and then solved by humans!

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