Enigma: The Battle for the Code

Enigma: The Battle for the Code

Paperback

By (author) Hugh Sebag-Montefiore

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  • Publisher: Weidenfeld Military
  • Format: Paperback | 576 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 194mm x 38mm | 440g
  • Publication date: 7 October 2004
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0304366625
  • ISBN 13: 9780304366620
  • Illustrations note: 55
  • Sales rank: 36,245

Product description

Breaking the German Enigma codes was not only about brilliant mathematicians and professors at Bletchley Park. There is another aspect of the story which it is only now possible to tell. It takes in the exploits of spies, naval officers and ordinary British seamen who risked, and in some cases lost, their lives snatching the vital Enigma codebooks from under the noses of Nazi officials and from sinking German ships and submarines. This book tells the whole Enigma story: its original invention and use by German forces and how it was the Poles who first cracked ' and passed on to the British - the key to the German airforce Enigma. The more complicated German Navy Enigma appeared to them to be unbreakable.

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Author information

Hugh Sebag Montefiore is a barrister and journalist (currently attached to the Mail on Sunday). His family owned Bletchley Park, where the Enigma code was broken, until they sold it to the British government in 1937.

Editorial reviews

The author is the great-great-grandson of a former owner of Bletchley Park, when it was simply a country house, before it was bought by the secret service and became the centre where the Germans' supposedly unbreakable Enigma cipher machine was often broken and read. Most books on the subject so far have covered the enormous strategic, and occasional tactical, roles of ultra secret decrypts, but Sebag-Montefiore concentrates on the naval aspects of the story, attempting the difficult task of explaining to a lay readership exactly how the process of decipherment worked. The trickiest mathematical passages come in appendices; the main text is enlivened with numerous tales of naval gallantry, as U-boats were captured and boarded at sea, and of horror, as merchant ships were sunk without warning. An exceedingly complicated subject provides the background for a stirring book. (Kirkus UK)