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From the Free Online Dictionary: en·ci·pher (n-sfr) tr.v. en·ci·phered, en·ci·pher·ing, en·ci·phersTo put (a message, for example) into cipher. ---…- en·cipher·er n. en·cipher·ment n. ci·pher also cy·pher (sfr) n.1. The mathematical symbol (0) denoting absence of quantity; zero. 2. An Arabic numeral or figure; a number. 3. One having no influence or value; a nonentity. 4.a. A cryptographic system in which units of plain text of regular length, usually letters, are arbitrarily transposed or substituted according to a predetermined code. b. The key to such a system. c. A message written or transmitted in such a system. 5. A design combining or interweaving letters or initials; a monogram. v. ci·phered, ci·pher·ing, ci·phers v.intr.To solve problems in arithmetic; calculate. See Synonyms at calculate. v.tr.1. To put in secret writing; encode. 2. To solve by means of arithmetic. ---- [Middle English cifre, from Old French, from Medieval Latin cifra, from Arabic ifr, from afira, to be empty (translation of Sanskrit nyam, cipher, dot); see pr1 in Semitic roots.] (MORE)