noun, verb (used with or without object) Chiefly British.
- cypress knee,
- cypress pine,
- cypress spurge,
- cypress vine
verb (used without object)
verb (used with object)
Origin of cipher
Examples from the Web for cypher
He plays Commander Alastair Denniston, head of the Government Code and Cypher School (GCCS) at Bletchley Park during World War II.Charles Dance on Tywin Lannister’s S5 Return, A ‘Game of Thrones’ Movie,’ and Sexy Peter Dinklage|Marlow Stern|November 18, 2014|DAILY BEAST
He had created a kind of cypher, without any obvious hierarchy of order.
Baker's letters were, of course, written in a sort of cypher, several kinds of which he was in the habit of using.Democracy An American Novel|Henry Adams
The angle of a cypher, which might play the part of a hyphen in ordinary type, alone tells them what numeral is intended.
Have you yet the cypher of which I formerly wrote to you, or any copy of it?The Writings of Thomas Jefferson|Thomas Jefferson
Why, the countess sent a cypher message to say that she had been entirely successful.The Weight of the Crown|Fred M. White
Parts of the orders were written in cypher which could be interpreted by the initiated.Ku Klux Klan|J. C. Lester
Word Origin for cipher
late 14c., "arithmetical symbol for zero," from Old French cifre "nought, zero," Medieval Latin cifra, with Spanish and Italian cifra, ultimately from Arabic sifr "zero," literally "empty, nothing," from safara "to be empty;" loan-translation of Sanskrit sunya-s "empty." The word came to Europe with Arabic numerals. Originally in English "zero," then "any numeral" (early 15c.), then (first in French and Italian) "secret way of writing; coded message" (a sense first attested in English 1520s), because early codes often substituted numbers for letters. Klein says Modern French chiffre is from Italian cifra.
"to do arithmetic" (with Arabic numerals), 1520s, from cipher (n.). Meaning "to write in code" is from 1560s. Related: Ciphered; ciphering.