Top 10 unbroken codes

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Updated on 9 May, 2012 at 12:08 pm


Day by day computer geeks are trespassing the parameters of its limitation and are evolving new concepts as they are merely a fun-to-do job. Algo, code, encryption, decryption and blah blah blah…..guys are just nerd in manipulating and figuring out riddle after riddle. Yet, there are some hidden meanings behind certain scripts, waiting for their decipherment. Still, they are far-off from the realm of blokes. Below are ten of the most renowned.

10. Chinese Gold Bar Cipher:

Linked up with a transaction of almost $300,000,000, seven gold bars were issued to a General Wang in Shanghai, in 1933. These bars weigh a total of 1.8 kilogram and consists a blend of cryptic Latin letters, pictures, script writing and Chinese writing that are yet to be deciphered. Finding out a satisfactory explanation for this cipher is still a tough for the International Association for Cryptologic Research (IACR) as well as for eminent decoders across the world.

9. D’agapeyeff Cipher:

For first time, this uncracked cipher was mentioned in “Codes and Cipher,” a book written in 1939 by notable cartographer Alexander D’agapeyeff. This book is occupied by classic encryption methods but it’s a matter of fact that Alexander D’agapeyeff, himself, forgot the mechanism which he had implemented on this piece of numerical strings.

8. 340-Character Cipher:

Comprising disarrayed stars and astrological symbols, this unbroken code is generally a letter which was delivered by Zodiac, a serial killer, to members of press in San Francisco and its surrounding areas. Till the date, cracking this code is far beyond the reach of computing power, despite of numerous solutions being proposed.


7. Dorabella Cipher:

Spread over 3 lines and constituting 87 characters, the Dorabella Cipher is an encrypted letter written by Edward Elgar, a famous British composer, to Miss Dora Penny on July 14, 1897. Total 24 symbols were used to write this encryption, with each symbol consisting either 1,2 or 3 semicircles, pointing in one of eight different directions. On 150th birth anniversary of Edward Elgar, a competition was organized to crack this code but finally ended up in a fruitless expedition.

6. Shugborough Inscription:

Considered among one of the world’s top uncracked ciphertexts, Shugborough Inscription deals with a string of eight letters – O U O S V A V V, carved between the letters D and M, on a shepherd’s monument in the grounds of Shugborough Hall, England. This cipher was introduced during 1637-1638, in the “Shepherds of Arcadia,” a noteworthy painting of Nicolas Poussin.

5. Voynich Manuscript:

Better known as the world’s most mysterious manuscript, this handwritten book of early 15th century constitutes approximately 240 pages, made of vellum. Despite of deep researches conducted by many professionals and notable cryptanalysts around the world, its script, language and author are still a subject of mystery.

4. Beale Ciphers:

Dealing with a hidden treasure located somewhere in Bedford County, Virginia, Beale Ciphers are a set of three encryptions written by a man named Thomas Jefferson Beale. Two of the ciphertexts describe owner’s information as well as the content of treasure but the third and most important one relates the exact location where jewels, gold and silver are buried.

3. Linear A:

Generated from the hieroglyphic script, Liner A was used around 1500 BC in ancient Crete. This script was discovered in 1900, by Sir Arthur Evans, in form of tablets inscribed with cryptical symbols. This mystifying code consists of phonetic symbols presenting syllables along with sematographic symbols presenting abstract ideas and sounds. Some conclusion were made after the decipherment of Linear B inscription which is considered identical to Linear A but the exact meaning of this script is still unclear.

2. Kryptos:

Carved on a large S-shaped structure made of wood, granite, quartz and copper, Kryptos is located in the premises of Central Intelligence Agency in Virginia. Three sections out of the four of sculpture have been decoded but the fourth and most important one still remains a thought-provoking matter for cryptanalysts. In present time, over 2000 members of the Yahoo! Groups are working together to decrypt the code.


1. Phaistos Disk:

This disk of fired clay was discovered by Luigi Pernier, an Italian archaeologist, in 1908, in the Minoan palace-site of Phaistos. It is about 15 cm in diameter and constitutes 45 unique signs that are, till the date, the most baffling and mysterious scripts for decoders. The disk lacks the availability of enough context to extract meaningful analysis.

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