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The cover of Sonderfahndungsliste G.B.

The Black Book was the post-war name given to the Sonderfahndungsliste G.B. (literally translated as the Special Search List G.B), the list of prominent Britons to be arrested in the case of a successful invasion of Britain by Nazi Germany in World War II.

It was a product of the SS Einsatzgruppen and contained the names of 2,820 persons, British subjects and European exiles, who were living in Britain and who were to be immediately arrested if Operation Sealion, the invasion of Britain, had succeeded. It was compiled by Walter Schellenberg. Many of the people on the list had already died, as in the case of Sigmund Freud, or had fled, as had Paul Robeson. Of the 20,000 original copies of this book, only two are known to survive. One is currently at the Imperial War Museum, London.

An interesting omission from the list of writers is George Bernard Shaw, who was one of the few English language writers whose works were to be published and performed in Nazi Germany.[1]

Notable people on the list were (incomplete sample):

Beside each name was the number of the RSHA (Reich Main Security Office) Amt (department) to which the person was to be handed over. Churchill was to be placed into the custody of Amt VI (Foreign Military Intelligence), but the vast majority of the people listed in the Black Book would be placed into the custody of Amt IV (Gestapo). On learning of the book, Rebecca West is said to have sent a telegram to Noël Coward saying My dear - the people we should have been seen dead with.

A similar book, Informationsheft G.B., contained information on establishments and institutions such as embassies, universities, newspaper offices and Freemasons' Lodges, in which the Nazis were interested.

See also

  • Dr. Franz Six. Official who was appointed by Reinhard Heydrich to direct state police operations in German-occupied Great Britain.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag Schellenberg, Invasion, 1940, at pages 150, 160, 162, 165, 168, 170, 173, 175, 180, 181, 186, 187, 191, 195, 201, 213, 217, 221, 225, 230, 234, 235, 237, 239, 244, 249, 259, 260, 262


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