enigma

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Related to enigmas: riddles

a riddle wrapped in an enigma

That which is so dense and secretive as to be totally indecipherable or impossible to foretell. It is a shortened version of a line used by Winston Churchill to describe the intentions and interests of Russia in 1939: "I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest." Many versions, variations, and appropriations of the quote, its structure, and its meaning have since been in use. I can't make any sense of this calculus textbook, it's like a riddle wrapped in an enigma. I just don't have any idea what Mary expects from me; she's a riddle wrapped in an enigma.
See also: enigma, riddle, wrap

a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma

That which is so dense and secretive as to be totally indecipherable or impossible to foretell. It is from a line used by Winston Churchill to describe the intentions and interests of Russia in 1939: "I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest." Many versions, variations, and appropriations of the quote, its structure, and its meaning have since been in use. Political campaigns make my head hurt. They're just a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.
See also: enigma, inside, wrap
References in periodicals archive ?
If attention to enigma as a basic literary category has waned since then, interest in the thing itself has not, and could be said to have increased sharply in twentieth-century literature.
Augustine's insight into enigma on the largest scale inspires Cook's development, in chapter 3, of enigma as "masterplot" a term she borrows from Terence Cave's Recognitions to mean a plot whose outcome is guaranteed by a certain view of the order of the world.
Because she was accustomed to living in a world of paradox, she made paradox the basic thrust of the Enigmas.
Ronnie Kon came tantalizingly close, in the August Word Ways, to identifying the long-sought intended solution to Eliza Hurst's 1782 Ladies' Diary enigma.
Enigma Semiconductor is an emerging leader in high performance, scalable packet-based switch fabric silicon for next-generation networking systems.
Enigma delivers carrier-class network reliability with HybriCore's intelligent backplane links that integrate multiple feedback loops and control paths.
Enigma will distribute both GO-Global for Windows and GO-Global for UNIX through its established reseller channel, initially focusing on the Windows market segment.
Robust serial link technology is a highly specialized and crucial component of a complete, integrated switching solution," said Rob Sturgill, president and CEO of Enigma Semiconductor.
The Enigma implementation of Rambus' backplane technology represents a significant technological breakthrough in usable bandwidth across the backplane," said Kevin Donnelly, vice president of engineering for Rambus Inc.
E[acute accent]NOTE TO EDITORS: If you would like additional information on Enigma Software Group, please visit the Enigma Software Group website at www.
Our experience with Digital River has been very impressive," said Alvin Estevez, CEO of Enigma.
Enigma Software Group is a Delaware corporation which commenced operations in July of 1999 as a developer of software and Internet-based systems.
In these times of uncertainty, Enigma Software Group has unveiled a new solution to the Internet world, empowering users with a product that allows them to take control of the computer that they already own.
A fabless semiconductor company, Enigma plans to develop efficient, advanced solutions for networking and storage markets.