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How to Write a Secret Message – Pig Pen Cipher

A few weeks ago we talked about ways that spies could send a secret message. This week we are going to look at one of my favourite ciphers – The Pig Pen Cipher.

No one really knows who invented this cipher or even why it is called the Pig Pen Cipher. Samples of it have been found in the writings of 18th century freemasons. In 1863, a message sent in Pig Pen Cipher caused great confusion when it was intercepted by the Union army in the United States.

The Pig Pen Cipher lets you turn letters into symbols based on where they appear in the grids below:

A symbol with a dot in it tells you whether the letter comes from the first or second version of the grid.


Practice your Pig Pen Cipher skills:

What do you call a secret agent Frog?   

What kind of activities does he get up to?

Try writing YOUR name in the Pig Pen Cipher.


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Don't miss a clue! Read last week's message for more spy tips and training.