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# An Unusual Cryptogram

## Question

Below is a set of 10 related words which have been

encripted using a letter substitution code (as in a

standard cryptogram), and placed into the two small

crisscross grids shown. Four words read across and

six words read down. The object is to decode the

grids.

```
+TUI+T++
+O+PNOP+
+P+++P++
+++OUNOP
+++++O++
+++++P++
++C+Y
+HGRB
+++L+
+++B+
[/code]

Here are two hints:

1. The longest word in the grid (TOPNOP), when decoded,
has a second meaning having nothing to do with the other
words in the grid.  This other meaning could be expressed
as 1/2 NOPOBUOBU + 1/2 TOPOAEB.  (These words are
encrypted with the same alphabet as the words in the grids.)
In a very different way, TOPNOP = 1/2 TOP + 1/2 YB.

2. If the 15 different letters that appear in the decoded
grid words and decoded hint words are placed in
alphabetical order and then reencrypted using the same
alphabet that they had been encrypted with before, they will
spell a 15-letter word that appears in the English Wiktionary.

Note on the origin of this puzzle:
This is very nearly a verbatim statement of a contest
on page 76 of the July, 2012 issue of GAMES magazine.
The deadline for entering this contest (July 31, 2012) has
passed.```
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## 5 answers to this question

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If the decoded words are reencrypted they be the same set of 15 letters showing in the puzzle.

Grid 1: INOPTU

Grid 2: BCGHLRY

Hints: AE

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Can you confirm these are the 10 words in the puzzle grids?

IP

TUI

TOP

PNOP

OUNOP

TOPNOP

CG

YB

RLB

HGRB

I've only found one set of words that fit TOPNOP, TOP, PNOP and OUNOP. But it doesn't fit #2 and starts to fall apart at TUI and IP.

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Can you confirm these are the 10 words in the puzzle grids?

IP

TUI

TOP

PNOP

OUNOP

TOPNOP

CG

YB

RLB

HGRB

I've only found one set of words that fit TOPNOP, TOP, PNOP and OUNOP. But it doesn't fit #2 and starts to fall apart at TUI and IP.

Yes, those are the words in the grids. It's part of the puzzle to figure out what's going on here.

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Per #2

U-ABCDEFGHIJKL

N-BCDEFGHIJKLM

C-CDEFGHIJKLMN

O-DEFGHIJKLMNO

P-EFGHIJKLMNOP

Y-FGHIJKLMNOPQ

R-GHIJKLMNOPQR

I-HIJKLMNOPQRS

G-IJKLMNOPQRST

H-JKLMNOPQRSTU

T-KLMNOPQRSTUV

A-LMNOPQRSTUVW

B-MNOPQRSTUVWX

L-NOPQRSTUVWXY

E-OPQRSTUVWXYZ

I can find no six letter word that fits -OP-OP where

T is between K and V

OP are alphabetical and between D-O and E-P and far enough from T to fit in YRIGH between them

Leads me to think it isn't just a letter substitution like it says. Is the word rearranged? Backwards? Haven't tried those yet...

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Per #2

U-ABCDEFGHIJKL

N-BCDEFGHIJKLM

C-CDEFGHIJKLMN

O-DEFGHIJKLMNO

P-EFGHIJKLMNOP

Y-FGHIJKLMNOPQ

R-GHIJKLMNOPQR

I-HIJKLMNOPQRS

G-IJKLMNOPQRST

H-JKLMNOPQRSTU

T-KLMNOPQRSTUV

A-LMNOPQRSTUVW

B-MNOPQRSTUVWX

L-NOPQRSTUVWXY

E-OPQRSTUVWXYZ

I can find no six letter word that fits -OP-OP where

T is between K and V

OP are alphabetical and between D-O and E-P and far enough from T to fit in YRIGH between them

Leads me to think it isn't just a letter substitution like it says. Is the word rearranged? Backwards? Haven't tried those yet...

When I did this, I mulled things over for a few days before I very nearly gave up. But then I took a good look at hint #1. That got me a bit of a crack to open up the puzzle. You REALLY must use both of those hints. You did a splendid job of using hint #2. That took me much longer than it took you. Now, work on hint #1. By the way, it really is just a standard letter-for-letter cryptogram -- no funny business there.

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