WHERE IS THE HOLY GRAIL HIDDEN ?
THE MYSTERY REVEALED
Last Modified Date : 21.09.2008
Kryptos is a sculpture by American artist James Sanborn located on the grounds of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in Langley, Virginia, in the United States. Since its dedication on November 3, 1990, there has been much speculation about the meaning of the encrypted messages it bears. It continues to provide a diversion for employees of the CIA and other cryptanalysts attempting to decrypt the messages.
The main sculpture is made of red
granite, red and green slate, white quartz, petrified wood, lodestone and
copper, and is located in the northwest corner of the New Headquarters Building
courtyard, outside of the Agency cafeteria.
The ciphertext on one half of the
main sculpture contains 869 characters in total, however Sanborn released
information in April of 2006 stating that an intended letter on the main half of
Kryptos was missing. This would bring the total number of characters to 870 on
the main portion. The other half of the sculpture comprises a Vigenčre
encryption tableau, comprised of 869 characters, if spaces are counted. Sanborn
worked with a retiring CIA employee named Ed Scheidt, Chairman of the CIA
Cryptographic Center, to come up with the cryptographic systems used on the
sculpture. Sanborn has since revealed that the sculpture contains a riddle
within a riddle which will be solvable only after the four encrypted passages
have been decrypted. He said that he gave the complete solution at the time of
the sculpture's dedication to CIA director William H. Webster. However, in an
interview for wired.com in January 2005, Sanborn said that he had not given
Webster the entire solution. He did, however, confirm that where in part 2 it
says "Who knows the exact location? Only WW," that "WW" was intended to refer to
Pop Culture References
The dust jacket of the US version of
Dan Brown's novel The Da Vinci Code contains two references to Kryptos: One on
the back cover (coordinates printed light red on dark red, vertically next to
the blurbs) is a reference to the coordinates mentioned in the plaintext of part
2 (see below), except the degrees digit is off by one. When Brown and his
publisher were asked about this, they both gave the same reply: "The discrepancy
is intentional." The other reference is hidden in the brown "tear"
artwork—upside-down words which say "Only WW knows." These are another reference
to Kryptos Part 2.
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