Cypher Book

WeepingAngelOctober 14, 2012

We came across this mysterious book at a library sale not too long ago. We can't figure out what it is and it irritates me to death! Please reply if you know what it is or have any idea at all! It's got a dark cover, typical trade paperback size. Inside the front cover is a handwritten number- 01639 - and "Hugo Antl.", as far as we can figure. There's no title page of any sort, copyright or title or anything. Inside there's a page number along the top, and then the numbers 1 through 30 going down the side. Then there're cryptic initials of some kind (W.M., S.D., J.D., T., etc.) There there appears to be some sort of dialogue, using a mix of capital and lowercase letters, with no spaces of any sort. Some lines end with question marks or periods, some with nothing. Some include parentheses, some dashes. I figure it's for an English-speaking entity, since there are occasional (See Code) in the middle of the text. Also, at the end there's an index at the end with the headings at the beginning of every section listed with their page numbers. Note that "index" is written in English. Page 52 is earmarked.

To see more pictures, see my post at:

Are the letters code, or abbreviations? Is it a court proceeding or a military interrogation?

What do the cryptic numbers on the first page mean? Is it a serial number? The number of books printed? A date?

Who or what or where is Hugo Antl.? "Antl" is followed by a period, so is it an abbreviation? A name with a simple dot added out of habit?

Any ideas?

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I think Hugo Antl is the owner of the book, and I'll bet it's some sort of manual for a ritual of something like the Masons or other group.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2012 at 5:27PM
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There was a Hugo Antl, born about 1898, lived in LeSeur Co., Minnesota, a farmer. I just found him in census records. No idea about the book.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2012 at 10:49AM
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It's a cheat sheet! The letters are the starting letter of each word, so it's a prompt without actually putting the ritual into writing.

WM is "Worshipful Master", which is a Freemasonry officer.
SD = Senior Deacon
JD = Junior Deacon


Here is a link that might be useful: Masonic Officers

    Bookmark   October 15, 2012 at 8:31PM
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You're probably right about the officers, all the letters seem to work. From my first bit of research it looks like the Masons used a pigpen cypher though, in which the final product is symbols, not letters. Hmm...the mystery deepens.

The Hugo Antl you guys found is probably the right one, because I live in Minnesota!

    Bookmark   October 18, 2012 at 12:05PM
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