Word:

Cipher

Ci´pher
n.1.
1.(Arith.) A character [0] which, standing by itself, expresses nothing, but when placed at the right hand of a whole number, increases its value tenfold.
2.One who, or that which, has no weight or influence.
Here he was a mere cipher.
- W. Irving.
3.A character in general, as a figure or letter.
4.A combination or interweaving of letters, as the initials of a name; a device; a monogram; as, a painter's cipher, an engraver's cipher, etc. The cut represents the initials N. W.
5.A private alphabet, system of characters, or other mode of writing, contrived for the safe transmission of secrets; also, a writing in such characters.
Cipher key
a key to assist in reading writings in cipher.
a.1.Of the nature of a cipher; of no weight or influence.
v. i.1.To use figures in a mathematical process; to do sums in arithmetic.
[imp. & p. p. Ciphered ; p. pr. & vb. n. Ciphering.]
"T was certain he could write and cipher too.
- Goldsmith.
v. t.1.To write in occult characters.
2.To get by ciphering; as, to cipher out the answer.
3.To decipher.
4.To designate by characters.
Noun1.cipher - a message written in a secret code
Synonyms: cypher
2.cipher - a mathematical element that when added to another number yields the same number
Synonyms: 0, cypher, nought, zero
3.Ciphercipher - a quantity of no importance; "it looked like nothing I had ever seen before"; "reduced to nil all the work we had done"; "we racked up a pathetic goose egg"; "it was all for naught"; "I didn't hear zilch about it"
4.cipher - a person of no influence
Synonyms: nobody, nonentity, cypher
5.cipher - a secret method of writing
Verb1.cipher - convert ordinary language into code; "We should encode the message for security reasons"
2.cipher - make a mathematical calculation or computation

CIPHER. An arithmetical character, used for numerical notation. Vide Figures, and 13 Vin. Ab. 210; 18 Eng. C. L. R. 95; 1 Ch. Cr. Law, 176.
     2. By cipher is also understood a mode of secret writing. Public ministers and other public agents frequently use ciphers in their correspondence, and it is sometimes very useful so to correspond in times of war. A key is given to each minister before his departure, namely, the cipher for writing ciphers, (chiffre chiffrant,) and the cipher for deciphering (chiffre dechiffrant.) Besides these, it is usual to give him a common cipher, (chiffre banal,) which is known to all the ministers of the same power, who occasionally use it in their correspondence with each other.
     3. When it is suspected that, a cipher becomes known to the cabinet where the minister is residing, recourse is had to a preconcerted sign in order to annul, entirely or in part, what has been written in cipher, or rather to indicate that the contents are to be understood in an inverted or contrary sense. A cipher of reserve is also employed in extraordinary cases.

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-- Cipher --
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