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Help with Cryptograms

A cryptogram is a letter substitution puzzle consisting of a phrase in which each letter has been replaced by different letter. For example, X might stand for E, L for T, and so on.

We have puzzles for you to work on here.
If you need help with a cryptogram in a newspaper, our cryptogram search engine is here.

Instructions for online solving:

  • To fill in a word, enter it in the box above the encoded word and click Substitute.
  • You can fill in more than one word at once.
  • To clear a word, enter . in the box above the word and click Substitute.
  • For hints, check the check-boxes beside one or more words and click Suggest.
  • After you request hints, checking the boxes next to suggestions and clicking Substitute will substitute them into the puzzle.
  • You can replace the beginning or ending portion of a word as follows:
    Typing -ly in the box over a word replaces the last two letters of that word with ly.
    Typing aard- in the box over a word replaces the first letters of that word with aard.
  • You can replace a single letter as follows:
    Typing X=E in any box will replace X with E throughout the puzzle.
  • You can fill in part of a word by using question marks where you don't know the letters, for example sw?m.
  • If you type a partial word in a box, only the undefined letters will be substituted (see examples below).
  • To start a puzzle over, use the BACK button on your browser.
Examples:
WORD TYPERESULT
HTZ the THE
TNFFNX f=t TNTTNX
MEETINLS g MEETINGS
CHOQFD sul SHOULD
THE . HKZ
TRYINK -g TRYING
SEAHES .- XEAHEX

Solving tips:

  • The letters which occur most often, probably stand for common english letters, like e, t, a, i and s.
  • Look for common letter combinations, such as th at the beginning of a word, or ly at the end.
  • When requesting hints, use long words.
    While XWT can stand for thousands of different words, NXNESLHXTBRB can only stand for anachronisms or electrolysis.
  • If you are decoding a Crypt-O-Gram, the second to last word is often love.