IMage of the Zimmerman Telegram

Shhhh! A History of Written Secrets

One of the oldest examples of writing being disguised or changed to hide meaning is seen in a cuneiform tablet dating from 1500 BC. It is believed to contain the recipe for a pottery glaze which the craftsman did not want to share with his fellow artists. By the 5th Century BC, Herodotus, the famous Greek historian, writes of a process that involves the tattooing of a shaved slave’s head and then allowing the hair to regrow before sending the slave to the recipient of the message. The message would then be revealed when the slave was once again shaved.

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A History of Written Secrets