enigma


enigma
/euh nig"meuh/, n., pl. enigmas, enigmata /-meuh teuh/.
1. a puzzling or inexplicable occurrence or situation: His disappearance is an enigma that has given rise to much speculation.
2. a person of puzzling or contradictory character: To me he has always been an enigma, one minute completely insensitive, the next moved to tears.
3. a saying, question, picture, etc., containing a hidden meaning; riddle.
4. (cap.) a German-built enciphering machine developed for commercial use in the early 1920s and later adapted and appropriated by German and other Axis powers for military use through World War II.
[1530-40; < L aenigma < Gk aínigma, equiv. to ainik- (s. of ainíssesthai to speak in riddles, deriv. of aînos fable) + -ma n. suffix of result]
Syn. 1. problem. See puzzle.

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Device used by the German military to encode strategic messages before and during World War II. The Enigma code was first broken by the Poles in the early 1930s, so that German messages were eventually intercepted and deciphered by Allied code-breakers during the war.

(See also Ultra.)

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▪ German code device
 device used by the German military command to encode strategic messages before and during World War II. The Enigma code was first broken by the Poles, under the leadership of mathematician Marian Rejewski, in the early 1930s. In 1939, with the growing likelihood of a German invasion, the Poles turned their information over to the British, who set up a secret code-breaking group, known as Ultra, under mathematician Alan M. Turing (Turing, Alan M.). Because the Germans shared their encryption device with the Japanese, Ultra also contributed to Allied victories in the Pacific. See also Cryptology: Developments during World Wars I and II (cryptology).

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Universalium. 2010.

Synonyms:

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  • enigmă — ENÍGMĂ, enigme, s.f. Lucru greu de înţeles, nelămurit, ascuns; taină, mister1. ♦ Ghicitoare, şaradă. – Din fr. énigme, lat. aenigma. Trimis de bogdang, 13.09.2007. Sursa: DEX 98  ENÍGMĂ s. v. mister. Trimis de siveco, 13.09.2007. Sursa: Sinonime …   Dicționar Român

  • enigma — s. m. 1. Descrição obscura ou ambígua, mas verdadeira, que se faz de uma coisa, para que outrem diga o nome dessa coisa. 2.  [Figurado] Arrazoado obscuro. 3. Coisa obscura, difícil de compreender. 4. Pessoa que, por qualquer circunstância, vive… …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • Enigma — Enigma, Энигма  загадка, головоломка, что то таинственное, невыразимое, или шарада или сложная задача. Энигма  шифровальная машина времён Второй мировой войны. Энигма  город в штате Джорджия, США. «Энигма»  компьютерная игра.… …   Википедия

  • enigma — e*nig ma ([ e]*n[i^]g m[.a]), n.; pl. {enigmas} ([ e]*n[i^]g m[.a]z). [L. aenigma, Gr. a i nigma, fr. a ini ssesqai to speak darkly, fr. a i^nos tale, fable.] 1. A dark, obscure, or inexplicable saying; a riddle; a statement, the hidden meaning… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Enigma — Enigma, GA U.S. town in Georgia Population (2000): 869 Housing Units (2000): 348 Land area (2000): 3.251680 sq. miles (8.421811 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.032409 sq. miles (0.083940 sq. km) Total area (2000): 3.284089 sq. miles (8.505751 sq.… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Enigma, GA — U.S. town in Georgia Population (2000): 869 Housing Units (2000): 348 Land area (2000): 3.251680 sq. miles (8.421811 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.032409 sq. miles (0.083940 sq. km) Total area (2000): 3.284089 sq. miles (8.505751 sq. km) FIPS code …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • enigma — sustantivo masculino 1. Conjunto de palabras o signos de sentido oculto, difíciles de comprender: Nos propuso un enigma y estuvimos toda la tarde buscando la solución. 2. Cosa que resulta desconocida o difícil de entender: Su vida es un enigma… …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • enigma — I noun aenigma, ambages, ambiguous saying, arcanum, bewilderment, braintwister, complexity, confusing statement, confusion, difficulty, inexplicable statement, inscrutable person, knotty point, mystery, obscure question, obscure statement,… …   Law dictionary

  • enigma — (non com. enimma) s.m. [dal lat. aenigma ătis, gr. aínigma atos, dal tema di ainíssomai parlare copertamente ] (pl. i ). 1. (crit.) [frase o componimento in versi che propone un concetto o una parola da indovinare: risolvere un e. ]… …   Enciclopedia Italiana

  • enigma — (n.) 1580s, earlier enigmate (mid 15c.), from L. aenigma riddle, from Gk. ainigma (pl. ainigmata), from ainissesthai speak obscurely, speak in riddles, from ainos fable, riddle, of unknown origin …   Etymology dictionary

  • enigma — riddle, puzzle, conundrum, *mystery, problem …   New Dictionary of Synonyms


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