Conel Hugh O'Donel Alexander CMG CBE (19 April 1909 – 15 February 1974), known as Hugh Alexander and C. H. O'D. Alexander as a pen name, was an Irish-born British cryptanalyst, chess player, and chess writer. He worked on the German Enigma machine at Bletchley Park during the Second World War, and was later the head of the cryptanalysis division at GCHQ for 25 years. In chess, he was twice British chess champion and earned the title of International Master.
|Conel Hugh O'Donel Alexander|
|Born||19 April 1909|
Cork, County Cork, Ireland,
|Died||15 February 1974 (aged 64)|
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England, UK
|Title||International Master (1950)|
Hugh Alexander was born into an Anglo-Irish family on 19 April 1909 in Cork, Ireland, the eldest child of Conel William Long Alexander, an engineering professor at University College, Cork (UCC), and Hilda Barbara Bennett. His father died in 1920 (during the Irish War of Independence), and the family moved to Birmingham in England where he attended King Edward's School. He won a scholarship to study mathematics at King's College, Cambridge, in 1928, graduating with a first in 1931. He represented Cambridge in chess.
From 1932, he taught mathematics at Winchester, and married Enid Constance Crichton Neate (1900–1982) on 22 December 1934. Their elder son was Sir Michael O'Donel Bjarne Alexander (1936–2002), a diplomat. His other son was Patrick Macgillicuddy Alexander (20 March 1940 – 21 September 2005), a poet who settled in Australia in 1960. In 1938, Hugh Alexander left teaching and became head of research at the John Lewis Partnership.
In February 1940, Alexander arrived at Bletchley Park, the British codebreaking centre during the Second World War. He joined Hut 6, the section tasked with breaking German Army and Air Force Enigma messages. In 1941, he transferred to Hut 8, the corresponding hut working on Naval Enigma. He became deputy head of Hut 8 under Alan Turing. Alexander was more involved with the day-to-day operations of the hut than Turing, and, while Turing was visiting the United States, Alexander formally became the head of Hut 8 around November 1942. Other senior colleagues included Stuart Milner-Barry, Gordon Welchman, and Harry Golombek. In October 1944, Alexander was transferred to work on the Japanese JN-25 code.
In mid-1946, Alexander joined GCHQ (under the control of the Foreign Office), which was the post-war successor organisation to the Government Code and Cypher School (GC&CS) at Bletchley Park. By 1949, he had been promoted to the head of "Section H" (cryptanalysis), a post he retained until his retirement in 1971.
MI5's Peter Wright, in his 1987 best-selling book Spycatcher: The Candid Autobiography of a Senior Intelligence Officer, wrote about Alexander's assistance to MI5 in the ongoing Venona project, as well as other important mutual cooperation between the two organizations, which broke down previous barriers to progress. "Any help is gratefully received in this department", Alexander told Wright, and that proved the case from then on. Wright also lauded Alexander's professionalism, and opined that the exceptional mental demands of his cryptanalytical career and chess hobby likely contributed to Alexander's early death at age 64, despite his healthy lifestyle.
He represented Cambridge University in the Varsity chess matches of 1929, 1930, 1931 and 1932 (he studied at King's College, Cambridge). He was twice a winner of the British Chess Championship, in 1938 and 1956. He represented England in the Chess Olympiad six times, in 1933, 1935, 1937, 1939, 1954 and 1958. At the 1939 Olympiad in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Alexander had to leave part-way through the event, along with the rest of the English team, because of the declaration of World War II, since he was required at home for codebreaking duties. He was also the non-playing captain of England from 1964 to 1970. He was awarded the International Master title in 1950 and the International Master for Correspondence Chess title in 1970. He won Hastings 1946/47 with the score 7½/9, a point ahead of Savielly Tartakower. His best tournament result may have been first equal (with David Bronstein) at Hastings 1953/54, where he went undefeated and beat Soviet grandmasters David Bronstein and Alexander Tolush in individual games. Alexander's opportunities to appear abroad were limited as he was not allowed to play chess in the Soviet bloc because of his secret work in cryptography. He was also the chess columnist of The Sunday Times in the 1960s and 1970s.
Many knowledgeable chess people believe that Alexander had Grandmaster potential, had he been able to develop his chess abilities further. Many top players peak in their late twenties and early thirties, but for Alexander this stretch coincided with World War II, when high-level competitive opportunities were unavailable. After this, his professional responsibilities as a senior cryptanalyst limited his top-class appearances. He defeated Mikhail Botvinnik in one game of a team radio match against the Soviet Union in 1946, at a time when Botvinnik was probably the world's top player. Alexander made important theoretical contributions to the Dutch Defence and Petroff Defence.
Events from the year 1909 in Ireland.1974 in Ireland
Events from the year 1974 in Ireland.8th Chess Olympiad
The 8th Chess Olympiad, organised by the Fédération Internationale des Échecs (FIDE), comprised an 'open' tournament, as well as a Women's World Championship contest. The main team event took place between August 21 and September 19, 1939, in Buenos Aires, Argentina and coincided with the outbreak of World War II. The Olympiad is the subject of the book: Pawns in a Greater Game which was published in March 2015.Alexander (surname)
Alexander is a surname originating in Scotland. It is originally an Anglicised form of the Scottish Gaelic MacAlasdair. It is a somewhat common Scottish name, and the region of Scotland where it traditionally is most commonly found is in the Highlands region of Scotland.Notable people with the surname include:
Adonis Alexander (born 1996), American football player
AJ Alexander (born 1980), American model and Playboy Playmate
A. V. Alexander, 1st Earl Alexander of Hillsborough (1885–1965), British politician
Albert R. Alexander (1859–1966), American judge
Amir Alexander (born 1963), Israeli-American historian
Ana Alexander (born 1954), Cuban long jumper
Annie Lowrie Alexander (1864–1929), American physician and educator
Archibald Alexander (1772–1851), American theologian, professor, and first principal of Princeton Seminary
Archibald Alexander (politician) (1755–1822), American physician and politician
Archibald Alphonso Alexander (1888–1958), American design and construction engineer
Archibald S. Alexander (1906–1979), American lawyer, civil servant, and Democratic politician
Barton S. Alexander (1819–1878), U.S. Army brigadier general and engineer during the American Civil War
Beatrice Alexander (1895–1990), American dollmaker and businesswoman
Birdie Alexander (1870–1960), American musician and educator
Boyd Alexander (1873–1910), British army officer, explorer and ornithologist
Caleb Alexander (died 1828), American clergyman, writer, teacher
Cecil Alexander (disambiguation), several people
Cecil Alexander (1918–2013), American architect
Cecil L. Alexander (born 1935), American politician
Cecil Frances Alexander (1818–1895), British hymn-writer and poet
Christopher Alexander (born 1936), Austrian-American architect and design theorist
Christopher James Alexander (1887–1917), British ornithologist
Claudia Alexander (1959–2015), American planetary scientist
Conel Hugh O'Donel Alexander (1909–1974), British cryptanalyst, chess player, and chess writer
Cory Alexander (born 1973), American basketball player
Courtney Alexander (born 1977), American basketball player
Danny Alexander (born 1972), British politician
Dari Alexander (born 1969), American news anchor
Devon Alexander (born 1987), American professional boxer
Doc Alexander (1897–1975), American NFL football player and coach
Donald Alexander (1921–2009), American lawyer
Donald Alexander (1928–2007), Irish physician and researcher
Dorothy Alexander, professional name of Dorothy Bohm (born 1924), naturalized British photographer
Dottie Alexander (born 1972), American keyboardist
Douglas Alexander (born 1967), British politician
Duane Alexander (born 1940), American doctor
Eben Alexander (author) (born 1953), American neurosurgeon
Edward Porter Alexander (1835–1910), U.S. and Confederate States Army officer
Ethel Skyles Alexander (1925–2016), American politician
Ernie Alexander (born 1933), American politician
Evan Shelby Alexander (1767–1809), American politician
F. Matthias Alexander (1869–1955), Australian actor/orator, founder of the Alexander Technique
Francesca Alexander (1837–1917), American illustrator, author, and translator
Frank Alexander (cricketer) (1911–2005), Australian cricketer
Franz Alexander (1891–1964), Hungarian-American psychoanalyst and physician
Fred Alexander (1870–1937), South African rugby union player
Gary Alexander (disambiguation), several people
Gary Alexander (baseball) (born 1953), United States baseball player
Gary Alexander (basketball) (born 1969), United States basketball player
Gary Alexander (footballer) (born 1979), English footballer
Gary Alexander (sound engineer), American sound engineer
Gary Alexander (martial art pioneer), American martial artist
Gary Alexander (politician), American politician in Washington
Jules Gary Alexander (20th c.) American musician and singer from the band The Association, known also as Gary Alexander
Grover Cleveland Alexander (1887–1950), American baseball player
Gus Alexander, (1934–2010), Scottish footballer
Harold Alexander (1900–1987), American politician
Harold Alexander, 1st Earl Alexander of Tunis (1891–1969), British general
Harvey Alexander (early 20th c.), American baseball player
Holmes Alexander (1906–1985), American historian, journalist, and columnist
Horace Alexander (1889–1989), English writer, pacifist and ornithologist
Howard Wright Alexander (1911–1985), Canadian-American mathematician
Hubbard Alexander (born 1939), American football player
Jaire Alexander (born 1997), American football player
James Waddel Alexander (1804–1859), American Presbyterian minister and theologian
James Waddell Alexander II (1888–1971), American mathematician
Jason Alexander (born 1959), stage name of American actor Jason Scott Greenspan
Jason Allen Alexander (late 20th/early 21st c.), American ex-husband of Britney Spears
Jean Alexander (1926–2016), British actress
Jeffrey C. Alexander (born 1947), American sociologist
John Alexander (disambiguation), several people
John White Alexander (1856–1915), American artist
Joseph Alexander (disambiguation), several people
Joseph Alexander (c. 1770–1828), German cellist and music teacher
Joseph Addison Alexander (1809–1860), American bible scholar
J. Grubb Alexander (1887–1932), full name Joseph Grubb Alexander, American screenwriter
Joseph A. "Doc" Alexander (1898–1975), American football player and coach
Joseph H. Alexander (c. 1938–2014), retired American marine
Joseph W. Alexander (born 1947), American politician
Joe Alexander (born 1986), American-Israeli basketball player
Kaitlyn Alexander (born 1992), Canadian actress
Lamar Alexander (born 1940), American politician
Lena Alexander (1899–1983), Scottish artist
Lincoln Alexander (1922–2012), Canadian politician
Lloyd Alexander (1924–2007), American author
Lucy Alexander (born 1970), British television presenter
Manny Alexander (born 1971), Dominican Republic-born American baseball player
Margie Alexander (1948–2013), American singer
Milton Alexander (1796–1856), American militia officer, attorney, and politician
Neil Alexander (born 1978), Scottish footballer
Olly Alexander (born 1990), English musician; lead singer of Years & Years
Patrick Young Alexander (1867–1943), British aviation pioneer
Peter Alexander (1926–2011), Austrian singer and actor
Randy Alexander (born 1951), American politician
Richard D. Alexander (born 1930), American professor and curator emeritus of insects at American the Museum of Zoology of the University of Michigan
Rex Alexander (1924–1982), American college sports coach
Robert McNeill Alexander (1934–2016), British zoologist
Robert P. Alexander (1904–1985), American philatelist
Ross Alexander (1907–1937), American actor
Sally Hobart Alexander (born 1943), American writer of children's literature
Samuel Alexander (1859–1938) Australian/British philosopher and essayist
Sarah Alexander (born 1971), British actress
Shane Alexander (late 20th/early 21st c.), American singer-songwriter and musician
Shane Alexander (born 1986), Australian volleyball player
Shane Alexander, 2nd Earl Alexander of Tunis (born 1935), British peer
Shaun Alexander (born 1977), American football player
Stan Alexander (1905–1961), English footballer
Stephanie B. Alexander an American mathematician
Sue Alexander (1933–2008), American children's author
Van Alexander (1915–2015), American bandleader, arranger and composer, born Alexander Van Vliet Feldman
Victor Alexander (born 1969), American basketball player
Wilfred Backhouse Alexander (1885–1965), English ornithologist and entomologist
William Alexander (bishop) (1824–1911), Irish cleric
William Alexander (rugby player) (1874–1937), Welsh rugby player
William Alexander, 1st Earl of Stirling (c.1567–1640), Scottish noble
Willie Alexander (born 1949), American football playerOther:
Murder of Travis Alexander, a crime perpetrated by Jodi Arias in 2008Cryptanalysis
Cryptanalysis (from the Greek kryptós, "hidden", and analýein, "to loosen" or "to untie") is the study of analyzing information systems in order to study the hidden aspects of the systems. Cryptanalysis is used to breach cryptographic security systems and gain access to the contents of encrypted messages, even if the cryptographic key is unknown.
In addition to mathematical analysis of cryptographic algorithms, cryptanalysis includes the study of side-channel attacks that do not target weaknesses in the cryptographic algorithms themselves, but instead exploit weaknesses in their implementation.
Even though the goal has been the same, the methods and techniques of cryptanalysis have changed drastically through the history of cryptography, adapting to increasing cryptographic complexity, ranging from the pen-and-paper methods of the past, through machines like the British Bombes and Colossus computers at Bletchley Park in World War II, to the mathematically advanced computerized schemes of the present. Methods for breaking modern cryptosystems often involve solving carefully constructed problems in pure mathematics, the best-known being integer factorization.Edward Guthlac Sergeant
Edward Guthlac Sergeant (3 December 1881, Crowland, Lincolnshire – 16 November 1961, Kingston upon Thames) was an English chess master.
He participated many times in the British Chess Championship, London City championship, and Hastings International Chess Congress. In 1907, he tied for 2nd-5th in London (British-ch, Henry Ernest Atkins won). He won or shared 1st at London 1913, London 1915/16 (won a playoff match against Theodor Germann), London 1916, Hastings 1919 (Minor), Bromley 1920, and Broadstairs 1921. He tied for 2nd-3rd with Harry Golombek at Brighton 1938 (British-ch, Conel Hugh O'Donel Alexander won).
He was a second cousin of Philip Walsingham Sergeant. In 1949 he was awarded the OBE in the Birthday Honours in recognition of his 39 years' service in the office of the Solicitor to the Board of Inland Revenue. He was the author of a leading work on Stamp Duty.Edward Travis
Sir Edward Wilfred Harry Travis (24 September 1888 – 23 April 1956) was a British cryptographer and intelligence officer, becoming the operational head of Bletchley Park during World War II, and later the head of GCHQ.Frank Parr
Frank Parr (17 December 1918 – 28 December 2003) was an English chess player who was born in Wandsworth.
He was British Boys (Under 18) champion in 1935.Grandmaster (chess)
Grandmaster (GM) is a title awarded to chess players by the world chess organization FIDE. Apart from World Champion, Grandmaster is the highest title a chess player can attain.
Once achieved, the title is generally held for life, though exceptionally it may be revoked for cheating. The abbreviation IGM for International Grandmaster is also sometimes used, particularly in older literature.
The title of Grandmaster, along with the lesser FIDE titles of International Master (IM) and FIDE Master (FM), is open to both men and women. The vast majority of grandmasters are men, but a number of women have also earned the GM title, with the first three having been Nona Gaprindashvili in 1978, Maia Chiburdanidze in 1984 and Susan Polgar in 1991. Since about 2000, most of the top 10 women have held the GM title.
There is also a Woman Grandmaster title with lower requirements awarded only to women.
FIDE awards separate Grandmaster titles to composers and solvers of chess problems, International Grandmaster for chess compositions to the former and International Solving Grandmaster to the latter (see List of grandmasters for chess composition). The International Correspondence Chess Federation (ICCF) awards the title of International Correspondence Chess Grandmaster (ICCGM).Hastings International Chess Congress
The Hastings International Chess Congress is an annual chess tournament which takes place in Hastings, England, around the turn of the year. The main event is the Hastings Premier tournament, which was traditionally a 10 to 16 player round-robin tournament. In 2004/05 the tournament was played in the knock out format; while in 2005/06 and 2006/07 it was played using the Swiss system. Alongside the main event there is the challengers section, which is open to all players. The winner of the challengers event earns an invitation in the following year's Premier.
In addition to the annual international tournament at the Christmas Congress, Hastings has also hosted international tournaments at irregular intervals in its Summer Congress. The most celebrated of these is Hastings 1895, which featured two world champions and nearly all of the world's best players.
Every World Champion before Garry Kasparov except Bobby Fischer played at Hastings: Wilhelm Steinitz (1895), Emanuel Lasker (1895), José Raúl Capablanca (1919, 1929/30, 1930/1 and 1934/5), Alexander Alekhine (1922, 1925/6, 1933/4 and 1936/7), Max Euwe (1923/4, 1930/1, 1931/2, 1934/5, 1945/6 and 1949/50), Mikhail Botvinnik (1934/5, 1961/2 and 1966/7), Vasily Smyslov (1954/5, 1962/3 and 1968/9), Mikhail Tal (1963/4), Tigran Petrosian (1977/8), Boris Spassky (1965/6), and Anatoly Karpov (1971/2). The only champions to play Hastings while currently holding the title were Lasker at Hastings 1895, Alekhine at the 1933/4 Christmas Congress and Botvinnik in 1961/62.Vera Menchik (Czechoslovakia), who was then the Women's World Champion, was the first woman to play in the Premier section, participating in seven tournaments from 1929/30 through 1936/37.
In 1963/4 Nona Gaprindashvili (USSR) won the Challengers section when she also was Women's World Champion, earning a spot in the next years Premier.
In the 1964/5 Premier she scored 5/9 to place fifth, beating all of the British masters in the tournament.The Hastings Variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined takes its name from the game Victor Berger (né Buerger) – George Alan Thomas, Hastings 1926/7, which began 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Bg5 h6 5.Bxf6 Qxf6 6.Nc3 c6 7.Qb3.Hugh Alexander
Hugh Alexander may refer to:
Hugh E. Alexander (1884–1957), Scottish minister
Hugh Quincy Alexander (1911–1989), Democratic U.S Representative from North Carolina
Conel Hugh O'Donel Alexander (1909–1974), British chess player and cryptanalyst
Hugh Alexander (baseball) (1917–2000), American baseball outfielder and scoutHut 8
Hut 8 was a section in the Government Code and Cypher School (GC&CS) at Bletchley Park (the British World War II codebreaking station) tasked with solving German naval (Kriegsmarine) Enigma messages. The section was led initially by Alan Turing. He was succeeded in November 1942 by his deputy, Hugh Alexander. Patrick Mahon succeeded Alexander in September 1944.Hut 8 was partnered with Hut 4, which handled the translation and intelligence analysis of the raw decrypts provided by Hut 8.
Located initially in one of the original single-story wooden huts, the name "Hut 8" was retained when Huts 3, 6 & 8 moved to a new brick building, Block D, in February 1943.After 2005, the first Hut 8 was restored to its wartime condition, and it now houses the "HMS Petard Exhibition".Maurice Kendall
Sir Maurice George Kendall, FBA (6 September 1907 – 29 March 1983) was a British statistician, widely known for his contribution to statistics. The Kendall tau rank correlation is named after him.Michael Arbuthnot Ashcroft
Michael Arbuthnot Ashcroft (1920–1949) was a code breaker at Bletchley Park during World War II, working in Hut 8 under Alan Turing.Morphy number
The Morphy number is a measure of how closely a chess player is connected to Paul Morphy (1837–1884) by way of playing chess games. People who played a chess game with Morphy have a Morphy number of 1. Players who did not play Morphy but played someone with a Morphy number of 1 have a Morphy number of 2. People who played someone with a Morphy number of 2 have a Morphy number of 3, et cetera.
The idea is similar to the Erdős number for mathematicians and the Bacon number for actors. For example, Viswanathan Anand, along with many current top players, has a Morphy number of 5: Anand played Efim Geller (Morphy number 4), who played Salo Flohr (Morphy number 3), who played Géza Maróczy (Morphy number 2), who played John Owen (Morphy number 1), who played Morphy. Taylor Kingston states that the idea of the Morphy number may have originated in a June 2000 note by Tim Krabbé, who has Morphy number 4.
As of April 2018, Leonard Barden, Pal Benko, Melvin Chernev, Dennis Horne, Borislav Ivkov, Erik Karklins, Franciscus Kuijpers, Aleksandar Matanović, Friðrik Ólafsson, Jonathan Penrose, and Oliver Penrose were the only known living players with Morphy number 3.Many ordinary players have a Morphy number of 6 or more.Raaphi Persitz
Raaphi (Raaphy, Rafi, Raphael, Rafael) Joseph Arie Persitz (26 July 1934 – 4 February 2009) was an English–Israeli–Swiss chess master, financial analyst, financial journalist, and chess writer. Persitz was Israeli Junior Champion in 1951. He was born in Tel Aviv, Israel, then British Mandate of Palestine.
He studied at Balliol College, Oxford, and represented Oxford University in the annual match against Cambridge University on three occasions (1954, 1955 and 1956). In 1954 he won his individual game in the Oxford-Cambridge match in the morning, playing very quickly in order to be able to travel by train to Swindon (some 75 miles away) in time to play top board for his county (Oxfordshire) against Gloucestershire in the afternoon. He was paired against a former British champion, Conel Hugh O'Donel Alexander, and managed to win this game as well.Persitz played three times for England in the World Student Team Chess Championship.
In 1954, at second board in 1st WST-ch in Oslo (+6 −0 =3);
In 1956, at first board in 3rd WST-ch in Uppsala (+3 −1 =6);
In 1957, at first board in 4th WST-ch in Reykjavík (+3 −6 =4).He won the individual gold medal at Oslo 1954.
Persitz moved from the UK to Israel, and then to Switzerland. He played for Israel at fourth board in 14th Chess Olympiad at Leipzig 1960 (+6 −4 =2).In 1955/56, he tied for 6-7th in Hastings (Viktor Korchnoi and Friðrik Ólafsson won). In 1958, he played in Haifa / Tel Aviv (Samuel Reshevsky won). In 1961, he tied for 7-8th in Netanya (Moshe Czerniak, Milan Matulović and Petar Trifunović won). In 1968/69, he tied for 8-10th in Hastings (Vasily Smyslov and Svetozar Gligorić won).
He was also a prolific and entertaining chess writer, contributing articles to a long-running column in British Chess Magazine entitled The Student's Corner.Reuben Fine
Reuben Fine (October 11, 1914 – March 26, 1993) was an American chess grandmaster, psychologist, university professor, and author of many books on both chess and psychology. He was one of the strongest chess players in the world from the mid 1930s until his retirement from chess in 1951.
Fine's best result was his equal first in the AVRO 1938 chess tournament, one of the strongest tournaments of all time. After the death of world champion Alexander Alekhine in 1946, Fine was one of six players invited to compete for the World Championship in 1948. He declined the invitation, however, and virtually retired from serious competition around that time, although he did play a few events until 1951.
Fine won five medals (four gold) in three chess Olympiads. Fine won the U.S. Open Chess Championship all seven times he entered (1932, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1939, 1940, 1941). He was the author of several chess books that are still popular today, including important books on the endgame, opening, and middlegame.Vera Menchik
Vera Frantsevna Menchik (Russian: Вера Францевна Менчик; Czech: Věra Menčíková; 16 February 1906 – 27 June 1944) was a British-Czechoslovak-Russian chess player who became the world's first women's chess champion. She also competed in chess tournaments with some of the world's leading male chess masters, with occasional successes including two wins over future world champion Max Euwe.