Blog reader Mario Gerlach has provided me a picture of an encrypted graffiti he saw in Nördlingen, Germany. Can a reader solve this cryptogram?

Nördlingen, a town in the state of Bavaria, Germany, is mainly known for its historic city center and for being one of only three towns in Germany that still has a completely intact city wall (the other two being Rothenburg ob der Tauber and Dinkelsbühl). Soccer fans know Nördlingen, because Gerd Müller, one of the greatest soccer players of all time, was born there.

Nördlingen also was the home of a brewery named “Zum goldenen Anker” (“Golden Anchor”), which shut down in 1999. The following sign can still be seen at a building in Nördlingen today:

Source: Mario Gerlach

This picture was taken by blog reader Mario Gerlach on New Year’s Eve 2019. Around the former brewery building, Mario spotted a couple of graffiti artworks:

Source: Mario Gerlach

Source: Mario Gerlach

Source: Mario Gerlach

Source: Mario Gerlach

One of these graffitis proved especially interesting:

Source: Mario Gerlach

This sequence of letters looks like an encrypted text. Here’s a transcript:


Every second column of this text block consists of the letters ABC, which means that not much information can be encoded in them. If we omit these identical columns, we get a 12-letter message:


There’s no obvious way to read this letter sequence. Is it an encrypted text? Can a reader say more about it or even decipher it? If so, please leave a comment.

Further reading: An unsolved Pigpen graffiti


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Kommentare (8)

  1. #1 David Oranchak
    18. Februar 2020

    In the remaining letters:


    the letters of the unbroken sequence T,U,V,W,X,Y,Z occur exactly once each.

    That leaves 4,E,K,P and R. Perhaps there is an explanation beyond simply an aesthetic choice by the artist.

  2. #2 David Oranchak
    18. Februar 2020

    If you remove T,U,V,W,X,Y,Z from


    Then you are left with: REP4K.
    Could it be interpreted as Rep 4K, Rep 4000, REPAK? Artist’s signature or just random noise?

  3. #3 Arnim Sommer
    18. Februar 2020

    That could also be a 2 instead of a Z…

  4. #4 OutsiTer
    18. Februar 2020

    If we read by columns, columns 1,3,5,7 give ABC.

  5. #5 Christof Rieber
    19. Februar 2020

    EVP4 is a song, thus graffiti ‘artist’ might have given Z the idea to try that song.

    Z try EVP4 – Twux.

  6. #6 Ralf Buelow
    20. Februar 2020

    The picturesque graffiti were apparently created by the local graffiti artist ABCDEF, see his webpage with his portfolio. You may contact him via a-mail.

  7. #7 CrazyT
    21. Februar 2020

    I’m not really shure if thats a Z or a 2.

  8. #8 Letter F
    5. März 2020

    The artist can’t for some reason express the sixth letter English “F” The Art is the expression of that and trying to but unable ABC=F, etc.