After the northwestern French village of Plougastel-Daoulas established a competition to decrypt a 230-year-old message inscribed on a rock situated in a cove in Brittany, two winners purport that the engraving was forged in remembrance of the death of a man who died off the coast.The competition was inaugurated after local experts were unable to decipher the puzzling inscription. The mayor said that although their translations differed from each other, both eventually arrived at the same conclusion. The two winners split the €2,000 (NIS 7,400) prize on Monday, according to the daily Ouest-France. The 20-line message, written on a meter-high rock, appeared to have been written by a semi-literate man who wrote in 18th century Breton, though some experts give credence to the possibility that some of the text is Welsh. Appearing beside traditional French letters are some that are reversed or upside down, pictures of ship, and a heart on top of a cross. In some sections of the text the letter Ø appears, which is used in Danish, Norwegian, Faroese, and Southern Sami languages.The text is clearly dated, with 1786 and 1787 inscribed into the slab – two to three years before the French Revolution, invoking a link to the Royal Navy.The winners were Noël René Toudic and the team of Roger Faligot and Alain Robet. Toudic is an English teacher and a graduate in Celtic studies living in Ille-et-Vilaine. Faligot is a historian and Robet is an artist specializing in historical reconstruction, both hailing from Finistère."Serge died when with no skill at rowing, his boat was tipped over by the wind," Toudic's translation of the text read, while Faligot and Robet believe the text claims: "He was the incarnation of courage and joie de vivre [zest for life]. Somewhere on the island he was struck and he is dead."Toudic believes the deceased was a soldier who was forced to row out to sea on a stormy day, estimating that the inscription was engraved by another soldier in honor of the missing man. The other entry gives a more sinister outlook, claiming that the message was written out of hatred for those responsible for the death of his friend. Both incorporate similar elements into their descriptions.Although the rock was discovered in 1979, the mystery simmered for thirty years before the municipality decided to investigate the message's true meaning. The village announced the competition in the spring of 2019, and over 2,000 people expressed their desire to participate in the competition.A total of 61 full translations were submitted to the village, three-quarters of them originating from France and the rest from countries such as the United States, Belgium, the United Arab Emirates and Thailand. Judges decided that out of the six finalist entries under consideration, the two submitted by Toudic, Faligot and Robet were the most reasonable interpretations.