Ancient Greece was a civilization that lasted from around 700 BC to about 600 AD. It spread across Europe and beyond to become one of the most powerful civilizations to ever exist. This civilization was home to many of the greatest men of history including Homer, Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. A less known fact about these great men of academia is that they loved riddles. Here is a riddle in Homer’s life:
We have what we did not find; what we did find we left behind.
The answer to this riddle is lice. Homer supposedly journeyed to an island called Ios and was posed this riddle by some boys who were just fishing. He then dies while pondering the answer.
Edgar Allan Poe is a great poet who has written countless well-known works. But did you know he was also an avid writer of riddles. He also thought of himself as one of the greatest cipher/riddle solvers of his time. Here is one of his great riddles from one of his short stories called The Gold-bug:
This riddle is a cryptogram and can be decrypted using a substitution cipher using letter frequencies. When decrypted this reads:
A good glass in the bishop’s hostel in the devil’s seat twenty-one degrees and thirteen minutes northeast and by north main branch seventh limb east side shoot from the left eye of the death’s-head a bee line from the tree through the shot fifty feet out.