I put these together myself from the CIA Kryptos site. I believed the extra L on the vigenere side of the copperplate was a typo perpetuated online, but am not quite as sure anymore.


I kept it in the rows Sanborn used. The disparity between this first and the following two grids is the unequal line lengths. The number of letters is essentially the same, see note on vigenere, but Sanborn chose to carve this one like this.

Kryptos Copperplate Cipher Grid


K4 is in bold. Probably a safe bet that if any use is to be made of the gridded text, we’ll need the translated K4 text. Please note that the “X” that Sanborn left out that changed the ending of K2 has also been left out of my grid which is a good argument for why Sanborn left it out – it literally just doesn’t fit.

Kryptos Copperplate Cipher Translation Grid

Vigenere text

I based it around the vigenere-digraphical substitution table scheme. Please note that the “L” has been left off. I will attempt to find a picture confirming or denying its presence in the sculpture.*
*The Jim Gillogly site has perhaps the best pictures many of us will ever see.

Kryptos Copperplate Vigenere Grid

As Gary Phillips pointed out, the two “halves” of Kryptos are in reversed orientation so for those interested in layering the two, here is the Vigenere in reverse position.

Reversed Kryptos Vigenere

Always nice to have visual confirmation…at least of the left hand side gaps at the top and bottom of the vigenere tableau. Why is there a gap behind the copperplate, in the ground? Also, it is possible from Jim’s pictures that there is indeed an added L in the sculpture. If it is real and not a trick of lighting then it has some significance because from what I can see by gridding the text, it is highly, highly unlikely that Sanborn would make so obvious of a typo. I’m not 100% convinced that the L is there but there’s reasonable doubt in my mind leading me to believe it could.

Kryptos side-view Kryptos Vigenere

Well here it is unless this was shopped by someone.

extra L in Kryptos
Kryptos Fan