Mysterious Messages: a History of Codes and Ciphers
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History?s amazing secrets and codes?and how to crack them yourself.
This fascinating look at history?s most mysterious messages is packed with puzzles to decode and ciphers that kids can use themselves. Here are the encrypted notes of Spartan warriors, the brilliant code-crackers of Elizabeth I, secret messages of the American Revolution, spy books of the Civil War, the famous Enigma Machine, and the Navajo code talkers. As computers change the way we communicate, codes today are more intriguing than ever.
From invisible ink to the CIA, this exciting trip through history is a hands-on, interactive experience? so get cracking!
presidential election in American history.” There were doubts about the accuracy of vote counts in some states, so Congress created a special election commission to decide the outcome. When the commission declared Hayes the winner, Tilden’s supporters accused the Republicans of fraud. The truth, as it turned out, was quite the contrary. Investigators uncovered a number of enciphered telegrams sent to and from prominent Democrats. Some were transposition ciphers, some were monoalphabetic
messages over telegraph cables controlled by their enemies, or they could send them using radio waves. The Germans had a fairly secure code—a nomenclator with code words that were themselves enciphered by monoalphabetic substitution. But in September 1914, the Russian navy recovered the body of a German officer from a sunken ship. Clasped in the corpse’s arms were copies of the German code. The Russians turned the material over to British intelligence’s codebreaking branch, known as Room 40. A
a wooden staff or baton called a scytale (sit-a-lee), and a long strip of leather or parchment. The sender wrapped the strip around the scytale in a spiral, then printed his message on it. When the strip was unwrapped, it seemed to contain a meaningless string of letters— until the receiver wrapped it around another staff of the same size. In 404 BCE, a bloody messenger stumbled into the quarters of a Spartan general named Lysander, removed a leather belt, and handed it over. The belt was
Caesar, Julius Calvocoressi, Peter Cardano, Girolamo Cardano grille Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Charlemagne, King of the Franks Charles I, King of England Chétardie, marquis de la China Church, Benjamin cillies ciphertext Civil War, U.S. Clinton, Henry Cocks, Clifford Colburn’s United Service Magazine Cold War Colossus computer computers COPACABANA Cornwallis, General cribs Cromwell, Oliver crossword puzzles cryptanalysts see also specific cryptanalysts
deathe comes, if ordinary men fear it, it frights not you, accounting it for a high honour, to have such a rewarde of your loyalty. Pray yet that you may be spared this soe bitter, cup. I fear not that you will grudge any sufferings; onlie if bie submission you can turn them away, ’tis the part of a wise man. Tell me, an if you can, to do for you anythinge that you wolde have done. The general goes back on Wednesday. Restinge your servant to command. R. T. Sir John asked for some time alone