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A manuscript by Alan Turing sold for $1,025,000 at Bonhams New York

Un manoscritto autografo di Alan Turing, il padre dell’informatica, è stato venduto per $1,025,000 alla Fine Books & Manuscripts Sale at Bonhams di New York il 13 aprile scorso. Una parte dei proventi sarà devoluta in beneficenza.

Cassandra Hatton, Senior Specialist in Fine Books and Manuscripts and the History of Science per Bonhams ha commentato, “Questo è un risultato meraviglioso e una testimonianza circa l’influenza che Alan Turing suscita ancora oggi. E’ stato un grande privilegio essere coinvolti in questa asta e siamo immensamente lieti che tutti i partecipanti abbiano colto il significato storico che accompagna la vendita di un oggetto così speciale”.

Four-rotor-enigma

Composto da 56 pagine contenute in un semplice notebook acquistato in una cartoleria a Cambridge, si tratta quasi certamente dell’unica testimonianza autografa di ampie dimensioni lasciataci in eredità da  Alan Turing. Risale al 1942, quando il matematico lavorava a Bletchley Park per decifrare il codice della famigerata Enigma e fornisce una notevole panoramica sul pensiero di un genio.

Come sappiamo Alan Turing si suicidò nel 1954 vittima di una profonda depressione conseguente al trattamento ormonale per “curare” la sua omosessualità. “Terapia” cui si sottopose come alternativa al carcere…

Nello stesso evento, una macchina Enigma Enciphering è stata aggiudicata alla cifra record di $ 269.000.

www.meridianae.com – info@meridianae.com

www.oredelmondo.com – info@oredelmondo.com


A key handwritten scientific document by Alan Turing in which he works on the foundations of mathematical notation and computer science was sold for $1,025,000 in Fine Books & Manuscripts Sale at Bonhams New York, the 13th April. A portion of the proceeds from Bonhams and the vendor will be donated to charity. 

Cassandra Hatton, Senior Specialist in Fine Books and Manuscripts and the History of Science at Bonhams said, “This is a wonderful result and a fitting testament to Alan Turing’s impact and legacy. It has been a great privilege to have been involved in this sale and we are immensely pleased that all the people who bid for this unique item and indeed the wider public have recognized Turing’s importance and place in history”.

Made up of 56 pages contained in a simple notebook bought from a stationers in Cambridge, UK, it is almost certainly the only extensive autograph manuscript by Turing in existence. From internal evidence, it dates from 1942 when he was working at Bletchley Park to break the German Enigma Code, and provides remarkable insight into the thought process of a genius. As he writes in his distinctive hand: “The Leibniz notation  I find extremely difficult to understand in spite of it having been the one I understood the best once! It certainly implies that some relation between x and y has been laid down eg, y=x2+3x…” It was among the papers left by Turing in his will to his close friend and fellow mathematician, Robin Gandy. Turing committed suicide in 1954 as a consequence of the hormone treatment to ‘cure’ his homosexuality which he was undergoing as an alternative to imprisonment.

In the same sale, a rare 3-rotor German Enigma Enciphering Machine sold for a world record at auction price of $269,000

www.meridianae.com – info@meridianae.com

www.oredelmondo.com – info@oredelmondo.com

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