This monograph contributes to the existence theory of difference sets, cyclic irreducible codes and similar objects. The new method of field descent for cyclotomic integers of presribed absolute value is developed. Applications include the first substantial progress towards the Circulant Hadamard Matrix Conjecture and Ryser's conjecture since decades. It is shown that there is no Barker sequence of length l with 13<1<4x10^(12). Finally, a conjecturally complete classification of all irreducible cyclic two-weight codes is obtained.