Dilly Knox
(1884-1943)

Died aged c. 59

Alfred Dillwyn "Dilly" Knox, CMG (23 July 1884 – 27 February 1943) was a British classics scholar and papyrologist at King's College, Cambridge and a codebreaker. As a member of the World War I Room 40 codebreaking unit, he helped decrypt the Zimmermann Telegram which brought the USA into World War I. He joined the GC&CS at the war's end. As Chief Cryptographer, Knox played an important role in the Polish-French-British meetings on the eve of World War II which disclosed Polish cryptanalysis of the Axis Enigma to the Allies. At Bletchley Park he worked on the cryptanalysis of Enigma ciphers until his death in 1943. He built the team and discovered the method that broke the Italian Naval Enigma, producing the intelligence credited with Allied victory at the Battle of Cape Matapan. In 1941, Knox broke the Abwehr Enigma. By the end of the war, Intelligence Service Knox had disseminated 140,800 Abwehr decrypts, including intelligence important for D-Day.

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Commemorated on 1 plaque

Photo of Dilly Knox brass plaque
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Dillwyn (Dilly) Knox was the pioneer UK Enigma cryptanalyst 23 July 1884 - 27 February 1943 The first German message was broken here in January 1940

Bletchley Park, Bletchley, United Kingdom where he was