1. ## Paraphrasing Howard Carter

For reference, here is the original text from Howard Carter's 1923 book The Tomb of Tut.ankh.Amen.

Slowly, desperately slowly it seemed to us as we watched, the remains of passage debris that encumbered the lower part of the doorway were removed, until at last we had the whole door clear before us. The decisive moment had arrived. With trembling hands I made a tiny breach in the upper left hand corner. Darkness and blank space, as far as an iron testing-rod could reach, showed that whatever lay beyond was empty, and not filled like the passage we had just cleared. Candle tests were applied as a precaution against possible foul gases, and then, widening the hole a little, I inserted the candle and peered in, Lord Carnarvon, Lady Evelyn and Callender standing anxiously beside me to hear the verdict. At first I could see nothing, the hot air escaping from the chamber causing the candle flame to flicker, but presently, as my eyes grew accustomed to the light, details of the room within emerged slowly from the mist, strange animals, statues, and gold - everywhere the glint of gold. For the moment - an eternity it must have seemed to the others standing by - I was struck dumb with amazement, and when Lord Carnarvon, unable to stand the suspense any longer, inquired anxiously, X "Can you see anything?" Q it was all I could do to get out the words, "Yes, wonderful things." Then widening the hole a little further, so that we both could see, we inserted an electric torch.

The orange color is verbatim from K3. The yellow are mods to the original text (to 'desparately', 'was', and 'caused'), and the blue are the additional letters X and Q.

-Rusty

2. There are two reasons that the X and the Q were inserted, imho.

1- As space fillers for the puzzle, to ensure an even number for the transpositions. If that were the case, why do they bracket "Can you see anything?" You could get the same bang for your buck by placing them both at the end of the text block.

2- As part of some larger puzzle, or a clue to some other part of the puzzle. I am starting to believe that there may be some higher purpose to the mispelled words and the random extra letters.

3. Adding letters X and Q into plaintexts was used historically to represent periods and question marks. Since he was paraphrasing the Carter book, he did not really need to add extra letters to make the length of the message work out. He more simply could have left in the original words 'were' and 'causing' instead of substituting 'was' and 'caused'.

Using the original words gave him a perfectly square block of plaintext which could be transposed the exact same way. He chose to substitute those two word to shorten the plaintext by two characters, which allowed him to add the additional letters X and Q.

Originally Posted by moscow32
1- As space fillers for the puzzle, to ensure an even number for the transpositions. If that were the case, why do they bracket "Can you see anything?" You could get the same bang for your buck by placing them both at the end of the text block.
So, I don't think the reason for adding X and Q is as simple as that he needed two more characters. He already had 336 characters before changing the tense of 'were' and 'causing'. He changed the tense of those words specifically to allow him to use X and Q.

Now I really want to know the answer to the seconds part of this question. Why? Why add X and Q where he did?

I don't think I have seen this discussed elsewhere. Excellent.

-Rusty

4. I just wanted to throw the ciphertext and plaintext up here in various forms to visualize where the substitutions and additions were made. The colors are as before; yellow are changes and blue are additions.

Here is the ciphertext as on the statue:

ENDYAHROHNLSRHEOCPTEOIBIDYSHNAIA
CHTNREYULDSLL
SLLNOHSNOSMRWXMNE
TPRNGATIHNRARPESLNNELEBLPII
ACAE
WMTWN
DITEENRAHCTENEUDRETNHAEOE
TFOLSEDTIWENHAEIOYTEY
QHEENCTAYCR
EIFTBRSPAMHHEWENATAMATEGYEERLB
TEEFO
ASFIOTUETUAEOTOARMAEERTNRTI
BSEDDNIAAHTTMSTEWPIEROAGRI
EWFEB
AECTDDHILCEIHSITEGOEAOSDDRYDLORIT
RKLMLEHAGTDHARDPNEOHMGFMFEUHE
ECDMRIPFEIMEHNLSSTTRTVDOHW

Here is the ciphertext organized in lines of length 24:

ENDYAHROHNLSRHEOCPTEOIBI
DYSHNAIACHTNREYULDSLL
SLL
NOHSNOSMRW
XMNETPRNGATIHN
RARPESLNNELEBLPII
ACAEWMT
WN
DITEENRAHCTENEUDRETNHA
EOETFOLSEDTIWENHAEIOYTEY

QHEENCTAYCREIFTBRSPAMHHE
WENATAMATEGYEERLBTEEFO
AS
FIOTUETUAEOTOARMAEERTNRT
IBSEDDNIAAHTTMSTEWPIEROA
GRI
EWFEBAECTDDHILCEIHSIT
EGOEAOSDDRYDLORITRKLMLEH
AGTDHARDPNEOHMGFMFEUHEEC
DMRIPFEIMEHNLSSTTRTVDOHW

Here is the step after the 1st rotation:

DAEGIFWQEWRNDE
MGGRBIEHONAOYN
RTOISONEE
DRHSD
IDE
EETAETIPSHY
PHAWDUTNFTENNA
FAOFDEACOESOAH
ERSENTMTLELSIR
IDDBIUAASNNMAO
MPDAAATYERNRCH
ENREAEECDAEWHN
HEYCHOGRTHL
XTL
NODTTTYEICEMNS
LHLDTOEIWTBNRR
SMODMAEFEELEEH
SGRHSRRTNNPTYE
TFIITMLBHEIPUO
TMTLEABRAUIRLC
RFRCWETSED
ANDP
TEKEPEEPIRCGST
VULIIREAOEAALE
DHMHETFMYTETLO
OELSRNOHTNWI
SI
HEEIOR
AHEHMHLB
WCHTATSEYATNL

Here is the step before the 2nd rotation:

DAEGIFWQ
EWRNDEMG
GRBIEHON
AOYNRTOI
SONEE
DRH
SDIDE
EET
AETIPSHY
PHAWDUTN
FTENNAFA
OFDEACOE
SOAHERSE
NTMTLELS
IRIDDBIU
AASNNMAO
MPDAAATY
ERNRCHEN
REAEECDA
EWHNHEYC
HOGRTHL
X
TLNODTTT
YEICEMNS
LHLDTOEI
WTBNRRSM
ODMAEFEE
LEEHSGRH
SRRTNNPT
YETFIITM
LBHEIPUO
TMTLEABR
AUIRLCRF
RCWETSED

ANDPTEKE
PEEPIRCG
STVULIIR
EAOEAALE
DHMHETFM
YTETLOOE
LSRNOHTN
WI
SIHEEI
OR
AHEHMH
LBWCHTAT
SEYATNLI

Here is the plaintext in lines of length 42:

SLOWLYDESPARATLYSLOWLYTHEREMAINSOFPASSAGED
EBRISTHATENCUMBEREDTHELOWERPARTOFTHEDOORWA
YW
ACHINTHEUPPERLEFTHANDCORNERANDTHENWIDENING
THEHOLEALITTLEIINSERTEDTHECANDLEANDPEEREDI
NTHEHOTAIRESCAPINGFROMTHECHAMBERCAUS
EDTHEF
LAMETOFLICKERBUTPRESENTLYDETAILSOFTHEROOMW
ITHINEMERGEDFROMTHEMIST
XCANYOUSEEANYTHINGQ

It is interesting there are seven changed letters.

-Rusty

From the perspective of someone who has made some puzzles, when you are looking for letters to use for something, it's not very often (if ever) that these can be gained by changing a few suffixes in the plaintext. Sanborn has said before its not what they are but where they are.

Maybe by "where" he means that they are in the present. Thats what he did to me. Changed 2 past tense words to present tense.

As well about the XQ , as has been posted, it is a historical way to transmit a break then a question mark. I think thats what they mean here too. Was an effective way to increase difficulty.

Thinking....

PS - Funny dead end story:

I managed to pull pawnzko out of the added letters using the keyword lawrence. I found a crazy chess mogation paper refering to ques and preordained moves on a chess board and got super excited till it went way downtown into mathville and i got lost and mugged and thrown in jail.

Mathville...if you have to pass thru dont stop!

6. And the word DESPARATLY - should be DESPERATELY - the second A should be an E and the E is missing before the LY. Why is that??

7. Did I miss an E? Good grief! That took forever to do the first time. Now I have to go back and do it again. Ugh.

-Rusty

8. No, no, you didn't make a mistake, Rusty! The cipher decoded shows the word as "desparatly". If it was spelled correctly it would be "desperately". Two errors in one word!

9. nice observation lol!

10. Junior Twelever Copper
Join Date
Oct 2006
Posts
35

## XQ

Perhaps he is telling us to X the Q in the IQllusion word? Perhaps Illusion is the third cipher code word.

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