The English Patient


Michael Ondaatje

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A German spy who was sent to Cairo in 1942. According to Caravaggio, Eppler was led across the desert by a Hungarian desert explorer named Almásy with a secret code book hidden in a copy of Rebecca. Eppler was apprehended by British Intelligence, but his guide, Almásy, disappeared into the desert. The character of Eppler is based on Johannes Eppler, an actual German spy during World War II who was raised in Egypt by his Egyptian stepfather.
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Eppler Character Timeline in The English Patient

The timeline below shows where the character Eppler appears in The English Patient. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter VI. A Buried Plane
History, Words, and Storytelling Theme Icon
God and Religion  Theme Icon
According to Caravaggio, the Germans sent a spy named Eppler to Cairo in 1942 with a copy of the book Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier... (full context)
Chapter IX. The Cave of Swimmers
War and Nationality Theme Icon
History, Words, and Storytelling Theme Icon
Caravaggio tells the English patient that British Intelligence knew about Eppler long before he got to Cairo. They had broken a German code and were waiting... (full context)