In the interest of presenting an alternative to widely accepted beliefs, I present some alternate possible meanings and uses of the word palimpsest which is one of the keywords used for the vigenere cipher of the first part of Kryptos.

A palimpsest is basically re-used writing materials.

  • Perhaps we are being encouraged to recycle?

Even in architecture, it’s basically building on top of or with what as there originally.

  • This would suggest to me that it is less something we are to do but more something we are to reverse

You could even say that it is a historical note on steganography

  • Demaratus sends a message via beeswax tablet
  • Histiaeus uses a tattoo on his slave’s head

Ultimately, most folks see it as a reason to overlay parts of Kryptos onto other parts of Kryptos.  Again, if this is meant as a clue it would be an indication of something that has already been done.  It would perhaps be better to search for underlying text or fragmented bits showing up where they don’t belong.  Perhaps under that copper patina there’s a message hidden in the metal of Kryptos itself.

There are a lot of things palimpsest is not but I doubt it will ever stop being used for solution attempts that are widely different from its historical definitions and uses.  Please use carefully.

Kryptosfan