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Sun, 20 Sep 2020

What strategy tips will help me solve Cryptogram puzzles?

The key to solving a cryptogram puzzle is a familiarity with the language the puzzle is written in.

Since standardly a cryptogram will be a monosubstitution cipher puzzle, this will enable you to solve most puzzles.

For instance, if the spacing is preserved in the sentence, then you know that any one letter words must be either 'A' or 'I'. By plugging those two combinations in you can often work out straight away which one it is.

Another common method is looking at three letter words and seeing what happens if you make them common words like 'and', 'the', 'but' and seeing if plugging in those letters makes sense.

The main technique is frequency analysis - broadly looking at the letters that occur the most and plugging in the most common letters for those: e.g. E, T, A.

The longer the text the more closely it is likely to cohere to the standard frequency letter distributions.

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