Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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Etymologically from κρυπτός (hidden) and γράφω (to write), cryptography is the art of writing, utilizing a technique to hide the true meaning from a third person while revealing it safely to the intended recipient (see Selenus, 1624). Notwithstanding this definition, some scholars employ instead the term “cyptology.” Certain authors in the past used the word steganographia (from στεγανός, concealed) to describe a secret message rather than the act of writing in code. The word polygraphiae used by Trithemius has to be understood…

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Gaytán Luna, Juan Antonio, “Cryptography”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 15 October 2021 <>
First published online: 2018

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