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Try different types of math puzzles. Math Puzzle is a collection of challenging math puzzles.




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  Math Puzzle Questions (521)  


Math Puzzle.ca

Try different types of math puzzles. Math Puzzle is a collection of challenging math puzzles.


Math Puzzle Questions

A Post-office Perplexity.
In every business of life we are occasionally perplexed by some chance question that for the moment staggers us. I quite pitied a young la...

Youthful Precocity.
The precocity of some youths is surprising. One is disposed to say on occasion, "That boy of yours is a genius, and he is certain to do gr...

At A Cattle Market.
Three countrymen met at a cattle market. "Look here," said Hodge to Jakes, "I'll give you six of my pigs for one of your horses, and then ...

The Beanfeast Puzzle.
A number of men went out together on a bean-feast. There were four parties invited--namely, 25 cobblers, 20 tailors, 18 hatters, and 12 gl...

A Queer Coincidence.
Seven men, whose names were Adams, Baker, Carter, Dobson, Edwards, Francis, and Gudgeon, were recently engaged in play. The name of the pa...

A Charitable Bequest.
A man left instructions to his executors to distribute once a year exactly fifty-five shillings among the poor of his parish; but they wer...

The Widow's Legacy.
A gentleman who recently died left the sum of L8,000 to be divided among his widow, five sons, and four daughters. He directed that every ...

Indiscriminate Charity.
A charitable gentleman, on his way home one night, was appealed to by three needy persons in succession for assistance. To the first perso...

The Two Aeroplanes.
A man recently bought two aeroplanes, but afterwards found that they would not answer the purpose for which he wanted them. So he sold the...

Buying Presents.
"Whom do you think I met in town last week, Brother William?" said Uncle Benjamin. "That old skinflint Jorkins. His family had been taking...

The Cyclists' Feast.
'Twas last Bank Holiday, so I've been told, Some cyclists rode abroad in glorious weather. Resting at noon within a tavern o...

A Queer Thing In Money.
It will be found that L66, 6s. 6d. equals 15,918 pence. Now, the four 6's added together make 24, and the figures in 15,918 also add to 24...

A New Money Puzzle.
The largest sum of money that can be written in pounds, shillings, pence, and farthings, using each of the nine digits once and only once,...

Square Money.
"This is queer," said McCrank to his friend. "Twopence added to twopence is fourpence, and twopence multiplied by twopence is also fourpen...

Pocket Money.
What is the largest sum of money--all in current silver coins and no four-shilling piece--that I could have in my pocket without being abl...

The Millionaire's Perplexity.
Mr. Morgan G. Bloomgarten, the millionaire, known in the States as the Clam King, had, for his sins, more money than he knew what to do wi...

The Puzzling Money-boxes.
Four brothers--named John, William, Charles, and Thomas--had each a money-box. The boxes were all given to them on the same day, and they ...

The Market Women.
A number of market women sold their various products at a certain price per pound (different in every case), and each received the same am...

The New Year's Eve Suppers.
The proprietor of a small London cafe has given me some interesting figures. He says that the ladies who come alone to his place for refre...

Beef And Sausages.
"A neighbour of mine," said Aunt Jane, "bought a certain quantity of beef at two shillings a pound, and the same quantity of sausages at e...

A Deal In Apples.
I paid a man a shilling for some apples, but they were so small that I made him throw in two extra apples. I find that made them cost just...

A Deal In Eggs.
A man went recently into a dairyman's shop to buy eggs. He wanted them of various qualities. The salesman had new-laid eggs at the high pr...

The Christmas-boxes.
Some years ago a man told me he had spent one hundred English silver coins in Christmas-boxes, giving every person the same amount, and it...

A Shopping Perplexity.
Two ladies went into a shop where, through some curious eccentricity, no change was given, and made purchases amounting together to less t...

Chinese Money.
The Chinese are a curious people, and have strange inverted ways of doing things. It is said that they use a saw with an upward pressure i...

The Junior Clerk's Puzzle.
Two youths, bearing the pleasant names of Moggs and Snoggs, were employed as junior clerks by a merchant in Mincing Lane. They were both e...

Giving Change.
Every one is familiar with the difficulties that frequently arise over the giving of change, and how the assistance of a third person with...

Defective Observation.
Our observation of little things is frequently defective, and our memories very liable to lapse. A certain judge recently remarked in a ca...

The Broken Coins.
A man had three coins--a sovereign, a shilling, and a penny--and he found that exactly the same fraction of each coin had been broken away...

Two Questions In Probabilities.
There is perhaps no class of puzzle over which people so frequently blunder as that which involves what is called the theory of probabilit...

Domestic Economy.
Young Mrs. Perkins, of Putney, writes to me as follows: "I should be very glad if you could give me the answer to a little sum that has be...

The Excursion Ticket Puzzle.
When the big flaming placards were exhibited at the little provincial railway station, announcing that the Great ---- Company would run ch...

Puzzle In Reversals.
Most people know that if you take any sum of money in pounds, shillings, and pence, in which the number of pounds (less than L12) exceeds ...

The Grocer And Draper.
A country "grocer and draper" had two rival assistants, who prided themselves on their rapidity in serving customers. The young man on the...

Judkins's Cattle.
Hiram B. Judkins, a cattle-dealer of Texas, had five droves of animals, consisting of oxen, pigs, and sheep, with the same number of anima...

Buying Apples.
As the purchase of apples in small quantities has always presented considerable difficulties, I think it well to offer a few remarks on th...

Buying Chestnuts.
Though the following little puzzle deals with the purchase of chestnuts, it is not itself of the "chestnut" type. It is quite new. At firs...

The Bicycle Thief.
Here is a little tangle that is perpetually cropping up in various guises. A cyclist bought a bicycle for L15 and gave in payment a cheque...

The Costermonger's Puzzle.
"How much did yer pay for them oranges, Bill?" "I ain't a-goin' to tell yer, Jim. But I beat the old cove down fourpence a hundred." "What...

Mamma's Age.
Tommy: "How old are you, mamma?" Mamma: "Let me think, Tommy. Well, our three ages add up to exactly seventy years." Tommy: "That's a lot,...

Their Ages.
"My husband's age," remarked a lady the other day, "is represented by the figures of my own age reversed. He is my senior, and the differe...

The Family Ages.
When the Smileys recently received a visit from the favourite uncle, the fond parents had all the five children brought into his presence....

Mrs. Timpkins's Age.
Edwin: "Do you know, when the Timpkinses married eighteen years ago Timpkins was three times as old as his wife, and to-day he is just twi...

Mother And Daughter.
"Mother, I wish you would give me a bicycle," said a girl of twelve the other day. "I do not think you are old enough yet, my dear," was t...

Mary And Marmaduke.
Marmaduke: "Do you know, dear, that in seven years' time our combined ages will be sixty-three years?" Mary: "Is that really so? And yet i...

Concerning Tommy's Age.
Tommy Smart was recently sent to a new school. On the first day of his arrival the teacher asked him his age, and this was his curious rep...

Next-door Neighbours.
There were two families living next door to one another at Tooting Bec--the Jupps and the Simkins. The united ages of the four Jupps amoun...

The Bag Of Nuts.
Three boys were given a bag of nuts as a Christmas present, and it was agreed that they should be divided in proportion to their ages, whi...

How Old Was Mary?
Here is a funny little age problem, by the late Sam Loyd, which has been very popular in the United States. Can you unravel the mystery? T...

Queer Relationships.
"Speaking of relationships," said the Parson at a certain dinner-party, "our legislators are getting the marriage law into a frightful tan...

Heard On The Tube Railway.
First Lady: "And was he related to you, dear?" Second Lady: "Oh, yes. You see, that gentleman's mother was my mother's mother-in-law, but ...

A Family Party.
A certain family party consisted of 1 grandfather, 1 grandmother, 2 fathers, 2 mothers, 4 children, 3 grandchildren, 1 brother, 2 sisters,...

A Mixed Pedigree.
Joseph Bloggs: "I can't follow it, my dear boy. It makes me dizzy!" John Snoggs: "It's very simple. Listen again! You happen to be my fath...

Wilson's Poser.
"Speaking of perplexities--" said Mr. Wilson, throwing down a magazine on the table in the commercial room of the Railway Hotel. "Who was ...

What Was The Time?
"I say, Rackbrane, what is the time?" an acquaintance asked our friend the professor the other day. The answer was certainly curious. "If ...

A Time Puzzle.
How many minutes is it until six o'clock if fifty minutes ago it was four times as many minutes past three o'clock? ...

A Puzzling Watch.
A friend pulled out his watch and said, "This watch of mine does not keep perfect time; I must have it seen to. I have noticed that the mi...

The Wapshaw's Wharf Mystery.
There was a great commotion in Lower Thames Street on the morning of January 12, 1887. When the early members of the staff arrived at Waps...

Changing Places.
The above clock face indicates a little before 42 minutes past 4. The hands will again point at exactly the same spots a little after 23 m...

The Club Clock.
One of the big clocks in the Cogitators' Club was found the other night to have stopped just when, as will be seen in the illustration, th...

The Stop-watch.
We have here a stop-watch with three hands. The second hand, which travels once round the face in a minute, is the one with the little rin...

The Three Clocks.
On Friday, April 1, 1898, three new clocks were all set going precisely at the same time--twelve noon. At noon on the following day it was...

The Railway Station Clock.
A clock hangs on the wall of a railway station, 71 ft. 9 in. long and 10 ft. 4 in. high. Those are the dimensions of the wall, not of the ...

The Village Simpleton.
A facetious individual who was taking a long walk in the country came upon a yokel sitting on a stile. As the gentleman was not quite sure...

Average Speed.
In a recent motor ride it was found that we had gone at the rate of ten miles an hour, but we did the return journey over the same route, ...

The Two Trains.
I put this little question to a stationmaster, and his correct answer was so prompt that I am convinced there is no necessity to seek tale...

The Three Villages.
I set out the other day to ride in a motor-car from Acrefield to Butterford, but by mistake I took the road going _via_ Cheesebury, which ...

Drawing Her Pension.
"Speaking of odd figures," said a gentleman who occupies some post in a Government office, "one of the queerest characters I know is an ol...

Sir Edwyn De Tudor.
In the illustration we have a sketch of Sir Edwyn de Tudor going to rescue his lady-love, the fair Isabella, who was held a captive by a n...

The Hydroplane Question.
The inhabitants of Slocomb-on-Sea were greatly excited over the visit of a certain flying man. All the town turned out to see the flight o...

Donkey Riding.
During a visit to the seaside Tommy and Evangeline insisted on having a donkey race over the mile course on the sands. Mr. Dobson and some...

The Basket Of Potatoes.
A man had a basket containing fifty potatoes. He proposed to his son, as a little recreation, that he should place these potatoes on the g...

The Passenger's Fare.
At first sight you would hardly think there was matter for dispute in the question involved in the following little incident, yet it took ...

The Barrel Of Beer.
A man bought an odd lot of wine in barrels and one barrel containing beer. These are shown in the illustration, marked with the number of ...

Digits And Squares.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+ | 1 | 9 | 2 | +---+---+---+ | 3 | 8 | 4 | +---+---+---+ | 5 | 7 | 6 | +---+---+--...

Odd And Even Digits.
The odd digits, 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9, add up 25, while the even figures, 2, 4, 6, and 8, only add up 20. Arrange these figures so that the od...

The Lockers Puzzle.
[Illustration: A B C ================== ================== ================== | ...

The Three Groups.
There appeared in "Nouvelles Annales de Mathematiques" the following puzzle as a modification of one of my "Canterbury Puzzles." Arrange t...

The Nine Counters.
[Illustration: (1)(5)(8) (7)(9) (2)(3) (4)(6) ] I have nine counters, each bearing one of the nine digits, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5,...

The Ten Counters.
In this case we use the nought in addition to the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. The puzzle is, as in the last case, so to arrange the ten cou...

Digital Multiplication.
Here is another entertaining problem with the nine digits, the nought being excluded. Using each figure once, and only once, we can form t...

The Pierrot's Puzzle.
The Pierrot in the illustration is standing in a posture that represents the sign of multiplication. He is indicating the peculiar fact th...

The Cab Numbers.
A London policeman one night saw two cabs drive off in opposite directions under suspicious circumstances. This officer was a particularly...

Queer Multiplication.
If I multiply 51,249,876 by 3 (thus using all the nine digits once, and once only), I get 153,749,628 (which again contains all the nine d...

The Number-checks Puzzle.
Where a large number of workmen are employed on a building it is customary to provide every man with a little disc bearing his number. The...

Digital Division.
It is another good puzzle so to arrange the nine digits (the nought excluded) into two groups so that one group when divided by the other ...

Adding The Digits.
If I write the sum of money, L987, 5s. 41/2d., and add up the digits, they sum to 36. No digit has thus been used a second time in the amo...

The Century Puzzle.
Can you write 100 in the form of a mixed number, using all the nine digits once, and only once? The late distinguished French mathematicia...

More Mixed Fractions.
When I first published my solution to the last puzzle, I was led to attempt the expression of all numbers in turn up to 100 by a mixed fra...

Digital Square Numbers.
Here are the nine digits so arranged that they form four square numbers: 9, 81, 324, 576. Now, can you put them all together so as to form...

The Mystic Eleven.
Can you find the largest possible number containing any nine of the ten digits (calling nought a digit) that can be divided by 11 without ...

The Digital Century.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 = 100. It is required to place arithmetical signs between the nine figures so that they shall equal 100. Of course, you ...

The Four Sevens.
In the illustration Professor Rackbrane is seen demonstrating one of the little posers with which he is accustomed to entertain his class....

The Dice Numbers.
I have a set of four dice, not marked with spots in the ordinary way, but with Arabic figures, as shown in the illustration. Each die, of ...

The Spot On The Table.
A boy, recently home from school, wished to give his father an exhibition of his precocity. He pushed a large circular table into the corn...

Academic Courtesies.
In a certain mixed school, where a special feature was made of the inculcation of good manners, they had a curious rule on assembling ever...

The Thirty-three Pearls.
"A man I know," said Teddy Nicholson at a certain family party, "possesses a string of thirty-three pearls. The middle pearl is the larges...

The Labourer's Puzzle.
Professor Rackbrane, during one of his rambles, chanced to come upon a man digging a deep hole. "Good morning," he said. "How deep is that...

The Trusses Of Hay.
Farmer Tompkins had five trusses of hay, which he told his man Hodge to weigh before delivering them to a customer. The stupid fellow weig...

Mr. Gubbins In A Fog.
Mr. Gubbins, a diligent man of business, was much inconvenienced by a London fog. The electric light happened to be out of order and he ha...

Painting The Lamp-posts.
Tim Murphy and Pat Donovan were engaged by the local authorities to paint the lamp-posts in a certain street. Tim, who was an early riser,...

Catching The Thief.
"Now, constable," said the defendant's counsel in cross-examination," you say that the prisoner was exactly twenty-seven steps ahead of yo...

The Parish Council Election.
Here is an easy problem for the novice. At the last election of the parish council of Tittlebury-in-the-Marsh there were twenty-three cand...

The Muddletown Election.
At the last Parliamentary election at Muddletown 5,473 votes were polled. The Liberal was elected by a majority of 18 over the Conservativ...

The Suffragists' Meeting.
At a recent secret meeting of Suffragists a serious difference of opinion arose. This led to a split, and a certain number left the meetin...

The Leap-year Ladies.
Last leap-year ladies lost no time in exercising the privilege of making proposals of marriage. If the figures that reached me from an occ...

The Great Scramble.
After dinner, the five boys of a household happened to find a parcel of sugar-plums. It was quite unexpected loot, and an exciting scrambl...

The Abbot's Puzzle.
The first English puzzlist whose name has come down to us was a Yorkshireman--no other than Alcuin, Abbot of Canterbury (A.D. 735-804). He...

Reaping The Corn.
A farmer had a square cornfield. The corn was all ripe for reaping, and, as he was short of men, it was arranged that he and his son shoul...

A Puzzling Legacy.
A man left a hundred acres of land to be divided among his three sons--Alfred, Benjamin, and Charles--in the proportion of one-third, one-...

The Torn Number.
I had the other day in my possession a label bearing the number 3 0 2 5 in large figures. This got accidentally torn in half, so that 3 0 ...

Curious Numbers.
The number 48 has this peculiarity, that if you add 1 to it the result is a square number (49, the square of 7), and if you add 1 to its h...

A Printer's Error.
In a certain article a printer had to set up the figures 5^4x2^3, which, of course, means that the fourth power of 5 (625) is to be multip...

The Converted Miser.
Mr. Jasper Bullyon was one of the very few misers who have ever been converted to a sense of their duty towards their less fortunate fello...

A Fence Problem.
The practical usefulness of puzzles is a point that we are liable to overlook. Yet, as a matter of fact, I have from time to time received...

Circling The Squares.
The puzzle is to place a different number in each of the ten squares so that the sum of the squares of any two adjacent numbers shall be e...

Rackbrane's Little Loss.
Professor Rackbrane was spending an evening with his old friends, Mr. and Mrs. Potts, and they engaged in some game (he does not say what ...

The Farmer And His Sheep.
Farmer Longmore had a curious aptitude for arithmetic, and was known in his district as the "mathematical farmer." The new vicar was not a...

Heads Or Tails.
Crooks, an inveterate gambler, at Goodwood recently said to a friend, "I'll bet you half the money in my pocket on the toss of a coin--hea...

The See-saw Puzzle.
Necessity is, indeed, the mother of invention. I was amused the other day in watching a boy who wanted to play see-saw and, in his failure...

A Legal Difficulty.
"A client of mine," said a lawyer, "was on the point of death when his wife was about to present him with a child. I drew up his will, in ...

A Question Of Definition.
"My property is exactly a mile square," said one landowner to another. "Curiously enough, mine is a square mile," was the reply. "Then the...

The Miners' Holiday.
Seven coal-miners took a holiday at the seaside during a big strike. Six of the party spent exactly half a sovereign each, but Bill Harris...

Simple Multiplication.
If we number six cards 1, 2, 4, 5, 7, and 8, and arrange them on the table in this order:-- 1 4 2 8 5 7 We can dem...

Simple Division.
Sometimes a very simple question in elementary arithmetic will cause a good deal of perplexity. For example, I want to divide the four num...

A Problem In Squares.
We possess three square boards. The surface of the first contains five square feet more than the second, and the second contains five squa...

The Battle Of Hastings.
All historians know that there is a great deal of mystery and uncertainty concerning the details of the ever-memorable battle on that fata...

The Sculptor's Problem.
An ancient sculptor was commissioned to supply two statues, each on a cubical pedestal. It is with these pedestals that we are concerned. ...

The Spanish Miser.
There once lived in a small town in New Castile a noted miser named Don Manuel Rodriguez. His love of money was only equalled by a strong ...

The Nine Treasure Boxes.
The following puzzle will illustrate the importance on occasions of being able to fix the minimum and maximum limits of a required number....

The Five Brigands.
The five Spanish brigands, Alfonso, Benito, Carlos, Diego, and Esteban, were counting their spoils after a raid, when it was found that th...

The Banker's Puzzle.
A banker had a sporting customer who was always anxious to wager on anything. Hoping to cure him of his bad habit, he proposed as a wager ...

The Stonemason's Problem.
A stonemason once had a large number of cubic blocks of stone in his yard, all of exactly the same size. He had some very fanciful little ...

The Sultan's Army.
A certain Sultan wished to send into battle an army that could be formed into two perfect squares in twelve different ways. What is the sm...

A Study In Thrift.
Certain numbers are called triangular, because if they are taken to represent counters or coins they may be laid out on the table so as to...

The Artillerymen's Dilemma.
[Illustration: [Pyramid of cannon-balls]] MMMMMMMr MM MM: ...

The Dutchmen's Wives.
I wonder how many of my readers are acquainted with the puzzle of the "Dutchmen's Wives"--in which you have to determine the names of thre...

Find Ada's Surname.
This puzzle closely resembles the last one, my remarks on the solution of which the reader may like to apply in another case. It was recen...

The Silk Patchwork
The lady members of the Wilkinson family had made a simple patchwork quilt, as a small Christmas present, all composed of square pieces o...

Two Crosses From One
Cut a Greek cross into five pieces that will form two such crosses, both of the same size. The solution of this puzzle is very beautiful....

The Cross And The Triangle
Cut a Greek cross into six pieces that will form an equilateral triangle. This is another hard problem, and I will state here that a sol...

The Folded Cross.
Cut out of paper a Greek cross; then so fold it that with a single straight cut of the scissors the four pieces produced will form a squ...

An Easy Dissection Puzzle.
First, cut out a piece of paper or cardboard of the shape shown in the illustration. It will be seen at once that the proportions are simp...

An Easy Square Puzzle.
If you take a rectangular piece of cardboard, twice as long as it is broad, and cut it in half diagonally, you will get two of the pieces ...

The Bun Puzzle.
THE three circles represent three buns, and it is simply required to show how these may be equally divided among four boys. The buns must ...

The Chocolate Squares.
Here is a slab of chocolate, indented at the dotted lines so that the twenty squares can be easily separated. Make a copy of the slab in p...

Dissecting A Mitre.
The figure that is perplexing the carpenter in the illustration represents a mitre. It will be seen that its proportions are those of a sq...

The Joiner's Problem.
I have often had occasion to remark on the practical utility of puzzles, arising out of an application to the ordinary affairs of life of ...

Another Joiner's Problem.
A joiner had two pieces of wood of the shapes and relative proportions shown in the diagram. He wished to cut them into as few pieces as p...

Mrs. Hobson's Hearthrug.
Mrs. Hobson's boy had an accident when playing with the fire, and burnt two of the corners of a pretty hearthrug. The damaged corners have...

The Pentagon And Square.
I wonder how many of my readers, amongst those who have not given any close attention to the elements of geometry, could draw a regular pe...

The Dissected Triangle.
A good puzzle is that which the gentleman in the illustration is showing to his friends. He has simply cut out of paper an equilateral tri...

The Table-top And Stools.
I have frequently had occasion to show that the published answers to a great many of the oldest and most widely known puzzles are either q...

The Great Monad.
Here is a symbol of tremendous antiquity which is worthy of notice. It is borne on the Korean ensign and merchant flag, and has been adopt...

The Square Of Veneer.
The following represents a piece of wood in my possession, 5 in. square. By markings on the surface it is divided into twenty-five square ...

The Two Horseshoes.
Why horseshoes should be considered "lucky" is one of those things which no man can understand. It is a very old superstition, and John Au...

The Betsy Ross Puzzle.
A correspondent asked me to supply him with the solution to an old puzzle that is attributed to a certain Betsy Ross, of Philadelphia, who...

The Cardboard Chain.
Can you cut this chain out of a piece of cardboard without any join whatever? Every link is solid; without its having been split and after...

The Paper Box.
It may be interesting to introduce here, though it is not strictly a puzzle, an ingenious method for making a paper box. Take a square of ...

The Cushion Covers.
The above represents a square of brocade. A lady wishes to cut it in four pieces so that two pieces will form one perfectly square cushion...

The Banner Puzzle.
A Lady had a square piece of bunting with two lions on it, of which the illustration is an exactly reproduced reduction. She wished to cut...

The Potato Puzzle.
Take a circular slice of potato, place it on the table, and see into how large a number of pieces you can divide it with six cuts of a kni...

The Seven Pigs.
+------------------------------+ | | | P | | ...

The Landowner's Fences.
The landowner in the illustration is consulting with his bailiff over a rather puzzling little question. He has a large plan of one of his...

The Wizard's Cats.
A wizard placed ten cats inside a magic circle as shown in our illustration, and hypnotized them so that they should remain stationary dur...

The Christmas Pudding.
"Speaking of Christmas puddings," said the host, as he glanced at the imposing delicacy at the other end of the table. "I am reminded of t...

Mrs. Smiley's Christmas Present.
Mrs. Smiley's expression of pleasure was sincere when her six granddaughters sent to her, as a Christmas present, a very pretty patchwork ...

Mrs. Perkins's Quilt.
It will be seen that in this case the square patchwork quilt is built up of 169 pieces. The puzzle is to find the smallest possible number...

The Squares Of Brocade.
I happened to be paying a call at the house of a lady, when I took up from a table two lovely squares of brocade. They were beautiful spec...

Linoleum Cutting.
The diagram herewith represents two separate pieces of linoleum. The chequered pattern is not repeated at the back, so that the pieces can...

Another Linoleum Puzzle.
Can you cut this piece of linoleum into four pieces that will fit together and form a perfect square? Of course the cuts may only be made ...

The Cardboard Box.
This puzzle is not difficult, but it will be found entertaining to discover the simple rule for its solution. I have a rectangular cardboa...

Stealing The Bell-ropes.
Two men broke into a church tower one night to steal the bell-ropes. The two ropes passed through holes in the wooden ceiling high above t...

The Four Sons.
Readers will recognize the diagram as a familiar friend of their youth. A man possessed a square-shaped estate. He bequeathed to his widow...

The Three Railway Stations.
As I sat in a railway carriage I noticed at the other end of the compartment a worthy squire, whom I knew by sight, engaged in conversatio...

The Garden Puzzle.
Professor Rackbrain tells me that he was recently smoking a friendly pipe under a tree in the garden of a country acquaintance. The garden...

Drawing A Spiral.
If you hold the page horizontally and give it a quick rotary motion while looking at the centre of the spiral, it will appear to revolve. ...

How To Draw An Oval.
Can you draw a perfect oval on a sheet of paper with one sweep of the compasses? It is one of the easiest things in the world when you kno...

St. George's Banner.
At a celebration of the national festival of St. George's Day I was contemplating the familiar banner of the patron saint of our country. ...

The Clothes Line Puzzle.
A boy tied a clothes line from the top of each of two poles to the base of the other. He then proposed to his father the following questio...

The Milkmaid Puzzle.
Here is a little pastoral puzzle that the reader may, at first sight, be led into supposing is very profound, involving deep calculations....

The Ball Problem.
A stonemason was engaged the other day in cutting out a round ball for the purpose of some architectural decoration, when a smart schoolbo...

The Yorkshire Estates.
I was on a visit to one of the large towns of Yorkshire. While walking to the railway station on the day of my departure a man thrust a ha...

Farmer Wurzel's Estate.
I will now present another land problem. The demonstration of the answer that I shall give will, I think, be found both interesting and ea...

The Crescent Puzzle.
Here is an easy geometrical puzzle. The crescent is formed by two circles, and C is the centre of the larger circle. The width of the cres...

The Puzzle Wall.
There was a small lake, around which four poor men built their cottages. Four rich men afterwards built their mansions, as shown in the il...

The Sheepfold.
It is a curious fact that the answers always given to some of the best-known puzzles that appear in every little book of fireside recreati...

The Garden Walls.
A speculative country builder has a circular field, on which he has erected four cottages, as shown in the illustration. The field is surr...

Lady Belinda's Garden.
Lady Belinda is an enthusiastic gardener. In the illustration she is depicted in the act of worrying out a pleasant little problem which I...

The Tethered Goat.
Here is a little problem that everybody should know how to solve. The goat is placed in a half-acre meadow, that is in shape an equilatera...

The Compasses Puzzle.
It is curious how an added condition or restriction will sometimes convert an absurdly easy puzzle into an interesting and perhaps difficu...

The Eight Sticks.
I have eight sticks, four of them being exactly half the length of the others. I lay every one of these on the table, so that they enclose...

Papa's Puzzle.
Here is a puzzle by Pappus, who lived at Alexandria about the end of the third century. It is the fifth proposition in the eighth book of ...

A Kite-flying Puzzle.
While accompanying my friend Professor Highflite during a scientific kite-flying competition on the South Downs of Sussex I was led into a...

How To Make Cisterns.
Our friend in the illustration has a large sheet of zinc, measuring (before cutting) eight feet by three feet, and he has cut out square p...

The Cone Puzzle.
I have a wooden cone, as shown in Fig. 1. How am I to cut out of it the greatest possible cylinder? It will be seen that I can cut out one...

Concerning Wheels.
There are some curious facts concerning the movements of wheels that are apt to perplex the novice. For example: when a railway train is t...

A New Match Puzzle.
In the illustration eighteen matches are shown arranged so that they enclose two spaces, one just twice as large as the other. Can you rea...

The Six Frogs.
The six educated frogs in the illustration are trained to reverse their order, so that their numbers shall read 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, with the...

The Grasshopper Puzzle.
It has been suggested that this puzzle was a great favourite among the young apprentices of the City of London in the sixteenth and sevent...

The Educated Frogs.
Our six educated frogs have learnt a new and pretty feat. When placed on glass tumblers, as shown in the illustration, they change sides s...

The Twickenham Puzzle.
[Illustration: ( I ) ((N)) ( M ) ((A)) ( H ) ((T)) ( E ) ((W)) ( C ) (...

The Victoria Cross Puzzle.
[Illustration: +---------------------+ | ... A .../ | | (I) |.......| (V) | |_____|_______|_____/| |......| ...

The Letter Block Puzzle.
[Illustration: +-----+-----+-----+ | | | | | | G | E | F | | | | | | | +-----+-----+----...

A Lodging-house Difficulty.
The Dobsons secured apartments at Slocomb-on-Sea. There were six rooms on the same floor, all communicating, as shown in the diagram. The ...

The Eight Engines.
The diagram represents the engine-yard of a railway company under eccentric management. The engines are allowed to be stationary only at t...

A Railway Puzzle.
Make a diagram, on a large sheet of paper, like the illustration, and have three counters marked A, three marked B, and three marked C. It...

A Railway Muddle.
The plan represents a portion of the line of the London, Clodville, and Mudford Railway Company. It is a single line with a loop. There is...

The Motor-garage Puzzle.
The difficulties of the proprietor of a motor garage are converted into a little pastime of a kind that has a peculiar fascination. All yo...

The Ten Prisoners.
If prisons had no other use, they might still be preserved for the special benefit of puzzle-makers. They appear to be an inexhaustible mi...

Round The Coast.
Here is a puzzle that will, I think, be found as amusing as instructive. We are given a ring of eight circles. Leaving circle 8 blank, we ...

Central Solitaire.
This ancient puzzle was a great favourite with our grandmothers, and most of us, I imagine, have on occasions come across a "Solitaire" bo...

The Ten Apples.
The family represented in the illustration are amusing themselves with this little puzzle, which is not very difficult but quite interesti...

The Nine Almonds.
"Here is a little puzzle," said a Parson, "that I have found peculiarly fascinating. It is so simple, and yet it keeps you interested inde...

The Twelve Pennies.
Here is a pretty little puzzle that only requires twelve pennies or counters. Arrange them in a circle, as shown in the illustration. Now ...

Plates And Coins.
Place twelve plates, as shown, on a round table, with a penny or orange in every plate. Start from any plate you like and, always going in...

Catching The Mice.
"Play fair!" said the mice. "You know the rules of the game." "Yes, I know the rules," said the cat. "I've got to go round and round the c...

The Eccentric Cheesemonger.
The cheesemonger depicted in the illustration is an inveterate puzzle lover. One of his favourite puzzles is the piling of cheeses in his ...

The Exchange Puzzle.
Here is a rather entertaining little puzzle with moving counters. You only need twelve counters--six of one colour, marked A, C, E, G, I, ...

Torpedo Practice.
If a fleet of sixteen men-of-war were lying at anchor and surrounded by the enemy, how many ships might be sunk if every torpedo, projecte...

The Hat Puzzle.
Ten hats were hung on pegs as shown in the illustration--five silk hats and five felt "bowlers," alternately silk and felt. The two pegs a...

Boys And Girls.
If you mark off ten divisions on a sheet of paper to represent the chairs, and use eight numbered counters for the children, you will have...

A Juvenile Puzzle.
For years I have been perpetually consulted by my juvenile friends about this little puzzle. Most children seem to know it, and yet, curio...

The Union Jack.
The illustration is a rough sketch somewhat resembling the British flag, the Union Jack. It is not possible to draw the whole of it withou...

The Dissected Circle.
How many continuous strokes, without lifting your pencil from the paper, do you require to draw the design shown in our illustration? Dire...

The Tube Inspector's Puzzle.
The man in our illustration is in a little dilemma. He has just been appointed inspector of a certain system of tube railways, and it is h...

Visiting The Towns.
A traveller, starting from town No. 1, wishes to visit every one of the towns once, and once only, going only by roads indicated by straig...

The Fifteen Turnings.
Here is another queer travelling puzzle, the solution of which calls for ingenuity. In this case the traveller starts from the black town ...

The Fly On The Octahedron.
"Look here," said the professor to his colleague, "I have been watching that fly on the octahedron, and it confines its walks entirely to ...

The Icosahedron Puzzle.
The icosahedron is another of the five regular, or Platonic, bodies having all their sides, angles, and planes similar and equal. It is bo...

Inspecting A Mine.
The diagram is supposed to represent the passages or galleries in a mine. We will assume that every passage, A to B, B to C, C to H, H to ...

The Cyclists' Tour.
Two cyclists were consulting a road map in preparation for a little tour together. The circles represent towns, and all the good roads are...

The Sailor's Puzzle.
The sailor depicted in the illustration stated that he had since his boyhood been engaged in trading with a small vessel among some twenty...

The Grand Tour.
One of the everyday puzzles of life is the working out of routes. If you are taking a holiday on your bicycle, or a motor tour, there alwa...

Water, Gas, And Electricity.
There are some half-dozen puzzles, as old as the hills, that are perpetually cropping up, and there is hardly a month in the year that doe...

A Puzzle For Motorists.
Eight motorists drove to church one morning. Their respective houses and churches, together with the only roads available (the dotted line...

A Bank Holiday Puzzle.
Two friends were spending their bank holiday on a cycling trip. Stopping for a rest at a village inn, they consulted a route map, which is...

The Motor-car Tour.
In the above diagram the circles represent towns and the lines good roads. In just how many different ways can a motorist, starting from L...

The Level Puzzle.
This is a simple counting puzzle. In how many different ways can you spell out the word LEVEL by placing the point of your pencil on an L ...

The Diamond Puzzle.
IN how many different ways may the word DIAMOND be read in the arrangement shown? You may start wherever you like at a D and go up or down...

The Deified Puzzle.
In how many different ways may the word DEIFIED be read in this arrangement under the same conditions as in the last puzzle, with the addi...

The Voters' Puzzle.
Here we have, perhaps, the most interesting form of the puzzle. In how many different ways can you read the political injunction, "RISE TO...

Hannah's Puzzle.
A man was in love with a young lady whose Christian name was Hannah. When he asked her to be his wife she wrote down the letters of her na...

The Honeycomb Puzzle.
Here is a little puzzle with the simplest possible conditions. Place the point of your pencil on a letter in one of the cells of the honey...

Those Fifteen Sheep.
A certain cyclopaedia has the following curious problem, I am told: "Place fifteen sheep in four pens so that there shall be the same numb...

King Arthur's Knights.
King Arthur sat at the Round Table on three successive evenings with his knights--Beleobus, Caradoc, Driam, Eric, Floll, and Galahad--but ...

The City Luncheons.
Twelve men connected with a large firm in the City of London sit down to luncheon together every day in the same room. The tables are smal...

A Puzzle For Card-players.
Twelve members of a club arranged to play bridge together on eleven evenings, but no player was ever to have the same partner more than on...

A Tennis Tournament.
Four married couples played a "mixed double" tennis tournament, a man and a lady always playing against a man and a lady. But no person ev...

The Wrong Hats.
"One of the most perplexing things I have come across lately," said Mr. Wilson, "is this. Eight men had been dining not wisely but too wel...

The Peal Of Bells.
A correspondent, who is apparently much interested in campanology, asks me how he is to construct what he calls a "true and correct" peal ...

Three Men In A Boat.
A certain generous London manufacturer gives his workmen every year a week's holiday at the seaside at his own expense. One year fifteen o...

The Glass Balls.
A number of clever marksmen were staying at a country house, and the host, to provide a little amusement, suspended strings of glass balls...

Fifteen Letter Puzzle.
ALE FOE HOD BGN CAB HEN JOG KFM HAG GEM MOB BFH FAN KIN JEK DFL JAM HIM GCL LJH AID JIB FCJ NJD OAK FIG HCK ML...

The Nine Schoolboys.
This is a new and interesting companion puzzle to the "Fifteen Schoolgirls" (see solution of No. 269), and even in the simplest possible f...

The Round Table.
Seat the same n persons at a round table on (n - 1)(n - 2) -------------- 2 occasions so that no person shall ever have...

The Mouse-trap Puzzle.
[Illustration 6 20 2 19 13 21 7 5 3 18 17 8 15 ...

The Sixteen Sheep.
[Illustration: +========================+ || | | | || || 0 | 0 | 0 | 0 || +-----+-----+-----+------+...

The Eight Villas.
In one of the outlying suburbs of London a man had a square plot of ground on which he decided to build eight villas, as shown in the illu...

Counter Crosses.
All that we need for this puzzle is nine counters, numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9. It will be seen that in the illustration A thes...

A Dormitory Puzzle.
In a certain convent there were eight large dormitories on one floor, approached by a spiral staircase in the centre, as shown in our plan...

The Barrels Of Balsam.
A merchant of Bagdad had ten barrels of precious balsam for sale. They were numbered, and were arranged in two rows, one on top of the oth...

Building The Tetrahedron.
I possess a tetrahedron, or triangular pyramid, formed of six sticks glued together, as shown in the illustration. Can you count correctly...

Painting A Pyramid.
This puzzle concerns the painting of the four sides of a tetrahedron, or triangular pyramid. If you cut out a piece of cardboard of the tr...

The Antiquary's Chain.
An antiquary possessed a number of curious old links, which he took to a blacksmith, and told him to join together to form one straight pi...

The Fifteen Dominoes.
In this case we do not use the complete set of twenty-eight dominoes to be found in the ordinary box. We dispense with all those dominoes ...

The Cross Target.
+-+-+ ||| +-+-+ ||| +-+-+-+-+-+-+ | | | || | | +-+-+-+-+-+-+ | | || || | +-+-+-+-+-+-+...

The Four Postage Stamps.
+---+----+----+----+ | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | +---+----+----+----+ | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | +---+----+----+----+ | 9 | 10 ...

Painting The Die.
In how many different ways may the numbers on a single die be marked, with the only condition that the 1 and 6, the 2 and 5, and the 3 and...

Chequered Board Divisions.
I recently asked myself the question: In how many different ways may a chessboard be divided into two parts of the same size and shape by ...

Lions And Crowns.
The young lady in the illustration is confronted with a little cutting-out difficulty in which the reader may be glad to assist her. She w...

Boards With An Odd Number Of Squares.
We will here consider the question of those boards that contain an odd number of squares. We will suppose that the central square is first...

The Grand Lama's Problem.
Once upon a time there was a Grand Lama who had a chessboard made of pure gold, magnificently engraved, and, of course, of great value. Ev...

The Abbot's Window.
Once upon a time the Lord Abbot of St. Edmondsbury, in consequence of "devotions too strong for his head," fell sick and was unable to lea...

The Chinese Chessboard.
Into how large a number of different pieces may the chessboard be cut (by cuts along the lines only), no two pieces being exactly alike? R...

The Chessboard Sentence.
I once set myself the amusing task of so dissecting an ordinary chessboard into letters of the alphabet that they would form a complete se...

The Eight Rooks.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | | | | | | | | | +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | |...

The Four Lions.
The puzzle is to find in how many different ways the four lions may be placed so that there shall never be more than one lion in any row o...

Bishops--unguarded.
Place as few bishops as possible on an ordinary chessboard so that every square of the board shall be either occupied or attacked. It will...

Bishops--guarded.
Now, how many bishops are necessary in order that every square shall be either occupied or attacked, and every bishop guarded by another b...

Bishops In Convocation.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | B | B | B | B | B | B | B | B | +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | |...

The Eight Queens.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | | | | ..Q | | | | +---+---+---+...+---+---+---+---+ | |...

The Eight Stars.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ |///| | | | | | |///| +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | |...

A Problem In Mosaics.
The art of producing pictures or designs by means of joining together pieces of hard substances, either naturally or artificially coloured...

Under The Veil.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | | | V | E | I | L | | | +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | |...

Bachet's Square.
One of the oldest card puzzles is by Claude Caspar Bachet de Meziriac, first published, I believe, in the 1624 edition of his work. Rearra...

The Thirty-six Letter-blocks.
The illustration represents a box containing thirty-six letter-blocks. The puzzle is to rearrange these blocks so that no A shall be in a ...

The Crowded Chessboard.
The puzzle is to rearrange the fifty-one pieces on the chessboard so that no queen shall attack another queen, no rook attack another rook...

The Coloured Counters.
The diagram represents twenty-five coloured counters, Red, Blue, Yellow, Orange, and Green (indicated by their initials), and there are fi...

The Gentle Art Of Stamp-licking.
The Insurance Act is a most prolific source of entertaining puzzles, particularly entertaining if you happen to be among the exempt. One's...

The Forty-nine Counters.
Can you rearrange the above forty-nine counters in a square so that no letter, and also no number, shall be in line with a similar one, ve...

The Three Sheep.
A farmer had three sheep and an arrangement of sixteen pens, divided off by hurdles in the manner indicated in the illustration. In how ma...

The Five Dogs Puzzle.
In 1863, C.F. de Jaenisch first discussed the "Five Queens Puzzle"--to place five queens on the chessboard so that every square shall be a...

The Five Crescents Of Byzantium.
When Philip of Macedon, the father of Alexander the Great, found himself confronted with great difficulties in the siege of Byzantium, he ...

Queens And Bishop Puzzle.
It will be seen that every square of the board is either occupied or attacked. The puzzle is to substitute a bishop for the rook on the sa...

The Southern Cross.
In the above illustration we have five Planets and eighty-one Fixed Stars, five of the latter being hidden by the Planets. It will be foun...

The Hat-peg Puzzle.
Here is a five-queen puzzle that I gave in a fanciful dress in 1897. As the queens were there represented as hats on sixty-four pegs, I wi...

The Amazons.
This puzzle is based on one by Captain Turton. Remove three of the queens to other squares so that there shall be eleven squares on the bo...

A Puzzle With Pawns.
Place two pawns in the middle of the chessboard, one at Q 4 and the other at K 5. Now, place the remaining fourteen pawns (sixteen in all)...

Lion-hunting.
My friend Captain Potham Hall, the renowned hunter of big game, says there is nothing more exhilarating than a brush with a herd--a pack--...

The Knight-guards.
The knight is the irresponsible low comedian of the chessboard. "He is a very uncertain, sneaking, and demoralizing rascal," says an Ameri...

The Rook's Tour.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | | | | | | | | | +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | |...

The Rook's Journey.
This puzzle I call "The Rook's Journey," because the word "tour" (derived from a turner's wheel) implies that we return to the point from ...

The Languishing Maiden.
[Illustration: --+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+ | | | | | | | | | Kt ...

A Dungeon Puzzle.
[Illustration: +-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+-----+ | | | | | | | | | | ...........

The Lion And The Man.
In a public place in Rome there once stood a prison divided into sixty-four cells, all open to the sky and all communicating with one anot...

An Episcopal Visitation.
The white squares on the chessboard represent the parishes of a diocese. Place the bishop on any square you like, and so contrive that (us...

A New Counter Puzzle.
Here is a new puzzle with moving counters, or coins, that at first glance looks as if it must be absurdly simple. But it will be found qui...

A New Bishop's Puzzle.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+ | b | b | b | b | +---+---+---+---+ | | | | | +---+---+---+---+ | | |...

The Queen's Tour.
The puzzle of making a complete tour of the chessboard with the queen in the fewest possible moves (in which squares may be visited more t...

The Star Puzzle.
[Illustration: +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | | | | | | | | | +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+ | | | | |...

The Yacht Race.
Now then, ye land-lubbers, hoist your baby-jib-topsails, break out your spinnakers, ease off your balloon sheets, and get your head-sails ...

The Scientific Skater.
It will be seen that this skater has marked on the ice sixty-four points or stars, and he proposes to start _from his present position_ ne...

The Forty-nine Stars.
The puzzle in this case is simply to take your pencil and, starting from one black star, strike out all the stars in twelve straight strok...

The Queen's Journey.
Place the queen on her own square, as shown in the illustration, and then try to discover the greatest distance that she can travel over t...

St. George And The Dragon.
Here is a little puzzle on a reduced chessboard of forty-nine squares. St. George wishes to kill the dragon. Killing dragons was a well-kn...

Farmer Lawrence's Cornfields.
One of the most beautiful districts within easy distance of London for a summer ramble is that part of Buckinghamshire known as the Valley...

The Greyhound Puzzle.
In this puzzle the twenty kennels do not communicate with one another by doors, but are divided off by a low wall. The solitary occupant i...

The Four Kangaroos.
In introducing a little Commonwealth problem, I must first explain that the diagram represents the sixty-four fields, all properly fenced ...

The Board In Compartments.
We cannot divide the ordinary chessboard into four equal square compartments, and describe a complete tour, or even path, in each compartm...

The Four Knights' Tours.
I will repeat that if a chessboard be cut into four equal parts, as indicated by the dark lines in the illustration, it is not possible to...

The Cubic Knight's Tour.
Some few years ago I happened to read somewhere that Abnit Vandermonde, a clever mathematician, who was born in 1736 and died in 1793, had...

The Four Frogs.
In the illustration we have eight toadstools, with white frogs on 1 and 3 and black frogs on 6 and 8. The puzzle is to move one frog at a ...

The Mandarin's Puzzle.
The following puzzle has an added interest from the circumstance that a correct solution of it secured for a certain young Chinaman the ha...

Exercise For Prisoners.
The following is the plan of the north wing of a certain gaol, showing the sixteen cells all communicating by open doorways. Fifteen priso...

The Kennel Puzzle.
A man has twenty-five dog kennels all communicating with each other by doorways, as shown in the illustration. He wishes to arrange his tw...

The Two Pawns.
Here is a neat little puzzle in counting. In how many different ways may the two pawns advance to the eighth square? You may move them in ...

Setting The Board.
I have a single chessboard and a single set of chessmen. In how many different ways may the men be correctly set up for the beginning of a...

Counting The Rectangles.
Can you say correctly just how many squares and other rectangles the chessboard contains? In other words, in how great a number of differe...

The Rookery.
The White rooks cannot move outside the little square in which they are enclosed except on the final move, in giving checkmate. The puzzle...

Stalemate.
Some years ago the puzzle was proposed to construct an imaginary game of chess, in which White shall be stalemated in the fewest possible ...

The Forsaken King.
Set up the position shown in the diagram. Then the condition of the puzzle is--White to play and checkmate in six moves. Notwithstanding t...

The Crusader.
The following is a prize puzzle propounded by me some years ago. Produce a game of chess which, after sixteen moves, shall leave White wit...

Immovable Pawns.
Starting from the ordinary arrangement of the pieces as for a game, what is the smallest possible number of moves necessary in order to ar...

Thirty-six Mates.
Place the remaining eight White pieces in such a position that White shall have the choice of thirty-six different mates on the move. Ever...

An Amazing Dilemma.
In a game of chess between Mr. Black and Mr. White, Black was in difficulties, and as usual was obliged to catch a train. So he proposed t...

Checkmate!
Strolling into one of the rooms of a London club, I noticed a position left by two players who had gone. This position is shown in the dia...

Queer Chess.
Can you place two White rooks and a White knight on the board so that the Black king (who must be on one of the four squares in the middle...

Ancient Chinese Puzzle.
My next puzzle is supposed to be Chinese, many hundreds of years old, and never fails to interest. White to play and mate, moving each of ...

The Six Pawns.
In how many different ways may I place six pawns on the chessboard so that there shall be an even number of unoccupied squares in every ro...

Counter Solitaire.
Here is a little game of solitaire that is quite easy, but not so easy as to be uninteresting. You can either rule out the squares on a sh...

Chessboard Solitaire.
Here is an extension of the last game of solitaire. All you need is a chessboard and the thirty-two pieces, or the same number of draughts...

The Wassail Bowl.
One Christmas Eve three Weary Willies came into possession of what was to them a veritable wassail bowl, in the form of a small barrel, co...

The Doctor's Query.
"A curious little point occurred to me in my dispensary this morning," said a doctor. "I had a bottle containing ten ounces of spirits of ...

The Barrel Puzzle.
The men in the illustration are disputing over the liquid contents of a barrel. What the particular liquid is it is impossible to say, for...

New Measuring Puzzle.
Here is a new poser in measuring liquids that will be found interesting. A man has two ten-quart vessels full of wine, and a five-quart an...

The Honest Dairyman.
An honest dairyman in preparing his milk for public consumption employed a can marked B, containing milk, and a can marked A, containing w...

Wine And Water.
Mr. Goodfellow has adopted a capital idea of late. When he gives a little dinner party and the time arrives to smoke, after the departure ...

The Keg Of Wine.
Here is a curious little problem. A man had a ten-gallon keg full of wine and a jug. One day he drew off a jugful of wine and filled up th...

Mixing The Tea.
"Mrs. Spooner called this morning," said the honest grocer to his assistant. "She wants twenty pounds of tea at 2s. 41/2d. per lb. Of cour...

A Packing Puzzle.
As we all know by experience, considerable ingenuity is often required in packing articles into a box if space is not to be unduly wasted....

Gold Packing In Russia.
The editor of the _Times_ newspaper was invited by a high Russian official to inspect the gold stored in reserve at St. Petersburg, in ord...

The Barrels Of Honey.
Once upon a time there was an aged merchant of Bagdad who was much respected by all who knew him. He had three sons, and it was a rule of ...

Crossing The Stream.
During a country ramble Mr. and Mrs. Softleigh found themselves in a pretty little dilemma. They had to cross a stream in a small boat whi...

Five Jealous Husbands.
During certain local floods five married couples found themselves surrounded by water, and had to escape from their unpleasant position in...

The Four Elopements.
Colonel B---- was a widower of a very taciturn disposition. His treatment of his four daughters was unusually severe, almost cruel, and th...

Dominoes In Progression.
It will be seen that I have played six dominoes, in the illustration, in accordance with the ordinary rules of the game, 4 against 4, 1 ag...

The Five Dominoes.
Here is a new little puzzle that is not difficult, but will probably be found entertaining by my readers. It will be seen that the five do...

The Domino Frame Puzzle.
It will be seen in the illustration that the full set of twenty-eight dominoes is arranged in the form of a square frame, with 6 against 6...

The Card Frame Puzzle.
In the illustration we have a frame constructed from the ten playing cards, ace to ten of diamonds. The children who made it wanted the pi...

The Cross Of Cards.
In this case we use only nine cards--the ace to nine of diamonds. The puzzle is to arrange them in the form of a cross, exactly in the way...

The "t" Card Puzzle.
An entertaining little puzzle with cards is to take the nine cards of a suit, from ace to nine inclusive, and arrange them in the form of ...

Card Triangles.
Here you pick out the nine cards, ace to nine of diamonds, and arrange them in the form of a triangle, exactly as shown in the illustratio...

"strand" Patience.
The idea for this came to me when considering the game of Patience that I gave in the _Strand Magazine_ for December, 1910, which has been...

A Trick With Dice.
Here is a neat little trick with three dice. I ask you to throw the dice without my seeing them. Then I tell you to multiply the points of...

The Village Cricket Match.
In a cricket match, Dingley Dell v. All Muggleton, the latter had the first innings. Mr. Dumkins and Mr. Podder were at the wickets, when ...

Slow Cricket.
In the recent county match between Wessex and Nincomshire the former team were at the wickets all day, the last man being put out a few mi...

The Football Players.
"It is a glorious game!" an enthusiast was heard to exclaim. "At the close of last season, of the footballers of my acquaintance four had ...

The Horse-race Puzzle.
There are no morals in puzzles. When we are solving the old puzzle of the captain who, having to throw half his crew overboard in a storm,...

The Pebble Game.
Here is an interesting little puzzle game that I used to play with an acquaintance on the beach at Slocomb-on-Sea. Two players place an od...

The Two Rooks.
This is a puzzle game for two players. Each player has a single rook. The first player places his rook on any square of the board that he ...

Puss In The Corner.
This variation of the last puzzle is also played by two persons. One puts a counter on No. 6, and the other puts one on No. 55, and they p...

A War Puzzle Game.
Here is another puzzle game. One player, representing the British general, places a counter at B, and the other player, representing the e...

A Match Mystery.
Here is a little game that is childishly simple in its conditions. But it is well worth investigation. Mr. Stubbs pulled a small table bet...

The Montenegrin Dice Game.
It is said that the inhabitants of Montenegro have a little dice game that is both ingenious and well worth investigation. The two players...

The Troublesome Eight.
Nearly everybody knows that a "magic square" is an arrangement of numbers in the form of a square so that every row, every column, and eac...

The Magic Strips.
I happened to have lying on my table a number of strips of cardboard, with numbers printed on them from 1 upwards in numerical order. The ...

Eight Jolly Gaol Birds.
The illustration shows the plan of a prison of nine cells all communicating with one another by doorways. The eight prisoners have their n...

Nine Jolly Gaol Birds.
Shortly after the episode recorded in the last puzzle occurred, a ninth prisoner was placed in the vacant cell, and the merry monarch then...

The Spanish Dungeon.
Not fifty miles from Cadiz stood in the middle ages a castle, all traces of which have for centuries disappeared. Among other interesting ...

The Siberian Dungeons.
The above is a trustworthy plan of a certain Russian prison in Siberia. All the cells are numbered, and the prisoners are numbered the sam...

Card Magic Squares.
Take an ordinary pack of cards and throw out the twelve court cards. Now, with nine of the remainder (different suits are of no consequenc...

The Eighteen Dominoes.
The illustration shows eighteen dominoes arranged in the form of a square so that the pips in every one of the six columns, six rows, and ...

Two New Magic Squares.
Construct a subtracting magic square with the first sixteen whole numbers that shall be "associated" by _subtraction_. The constant is, of...

Magic Squares Of Two Degrees.
While reading a French mathematical work I happened to come across, the following statement: "A very remarkable magic square of 8, in two ...

The Baskets Of Plums.
This is the form in which I first introduced the question of magic squares with prime numbers. I will here warn the reader that there is a...

The Mandarin's "t" Puzzle.
Before Mr. Beauchamp Cholmondely Marjoribanks set out on his tour in the Far East, he prided himself on his knowledge of magic squares, a ...

A Magic Square Of Composites.
As we have just discussed the construction of magic squares with prime numbers, the following forms an interesting companion problem. Make...

The Magic Knight's Tour.
Here is a problem that has never yet been solved, nor has its impossibility been demonstrated. Play the knight once to every square of the...

A Magic Square Of Composites.
As we have just discussed the construction of magic squares with prime numbers, the following forms an interesting companion problem. Make...

Who Was First?
Anderson, Biggs, and Carpenter were staying together at a place by the seaside. One day they went out in a boat and were a mile at sea whe...

A Wonderful Village.
There is a certain village in Japan, situated in a very low valley, and yet the sun is nearer to the inhabitants every noon, by 3,000 mile...

A Calendar Puzzle.
If the end of the world should come on the first day of a new century, can you say what are the chances that it will happen on a Sunday? ...

The Tiring Irons.
The illustration represents one of the most ancient of all mechanical puzzles. Its origin is unknown. Cardan, the mathematician, wrote abo...

Such A Getting Upstairs.
In a suburban villa there is a small staircase with eight steps, not counting the landing. The little puzzle with which Tommy Smart perple...

The Five Pennies.
Here is a really hard puzzle, and yet its conditions are so absurdly simple. Every reader knows how to place four pennies so that they are...

The Industrious Bookworm.
Our friend Professor Rackbrane is seen in the illustration to be propounding another of his little posers. He is explaining that since he ...

A Chain Puzzle.
This is a puzzle based on a pretty little idea first dealt with by the late Mr. Sam Loyd. A man had nine pieces of chain, as shown in the ...

The Sabbath Puzzle.
I have come across the following little poser in an old book. I wonder how many readers will see the author's intended solution to the rid...

The Ruby Brooch.
The annals of Scotland Yard contain some remarkable cases of jewel robberies, but one of the most perplexing was the theft of Lady Littlew...

The Dovetailed Block.
Here is a curious mechanical puzzle that was given to me some years ago, but I cannot say who first invented it. It consists of two solid ...

Jack And The Beanstalk.
The illustration, by a British artist, is a sketch of Jack climbing the beanstalk. Now, the artist has made a serious blunder in this draw...

The Hymn-board Poser.
The worthy vicar of Chumpley St. Winifred is in great distress. A little church difficulty has arisen that all the combined intelligence o...

Pheasant-shooting.
A Cockney friend, who is very apt to draw the long bow, and is evidently less of a sportsman than he pretends to be, relates to me the fol...

The Gardener And The Cook.
A correspondent, signing himself "Simple Simon," suggested that I should give a special catch puzzle in the issue of _The Weekly Dispatch_...

Placing Halfpennies.
Here is an interesting little puzzle suggested to me by Mr. W. T. Whyte. Mark off on a sheet of paper a rectangular space 5 inches by 3 in...

Find The Man's Wife.
One summer day in 1903 I was loitering on the Brighton front, watching the people strolling about on the beach, when the friend who was wi...

The Reve's Puzzle
The Reve was a wily man and something ...

The Skipper And The Sea-serpent
Mr. Simon Softleigh had spent most of his life between Tooting Bec and Fenchurch Street. His knowledge of the sea was therefore very ...

A Reversible Magic Square
Can you construct a square of sixteen different numbers so that it shall be magic (that is, adding up alike in the four rows, four co...

The Tube Railway
The above diagram is the plan of an unde...

The Three Motor-cars
Pope has told us that all chance is but ...

On The Ramsgate Sands
Thirteen youngsters were seen dancing in a ring on the Ramsgate sands. Apparently they were playing "Round the Mulberry Bush." The pu...

The Two Errand Boys
A country baker sent off his boy with a message to the butcher in the next village, and at the same time the butcher sent his boy to ...

The Nelson Column
During a Nelson celebration I was standing in Trafalgar Square with a friend of puzzling proclivities. He had for some time been gazi...

The Perplexed Plumber
When I paid a visit to Peckham recently I found everybody asking, "What has happened to Sam Solders, the plumber?" He seemed to be in...

The Fifteen Orchards
In the county of Devon, where the cider ...

Robinson Crusoe's Table
Here is a curious extract from Robinson Crusoe's diary. It is not to be found in the modern editions of the Adventures, and is omitte...

Foxes And Geese
Here is a little puzzle of the moving counters class that my readers will probably find entertaining. Make a diagram of any convenien...

The Four Porkers
The four pigs are so placed, each in a separate sty, that although every one of the thirty-six sties is in a straight line (either ho...

The Number Blocks
The children in the illustration have found that a large number of very interesting and instructive puzzles may be made out of number...

The Round Table
Seven friends, named Adams, Brooks, Cater, Dobson, Edwards, Fry, and Green, were spending fifteen days together at the seaside, and t...

The Five Tea Tins
Sometimes people will speak of mere counting as one of the simplest operations in the world; but on occasions, as I shall show, it is...

The Primrose Puzzle
Select the name of any flower that you t...

The Eccentric Market-woman
Mrs. Covey, who keeps a little poultry farm in Surrey, is one of the most eccentric women I ever met. Her manner of doing business is...

The Chifu-chemulpo Puzzle
Here is a puzzle that was once on sale in the London shops. It represents a military train—an engine and eight cars. The puzzle...

The English Tour
This puzzle has to do with railway route...

Captain Longbow And The Bears
That eminent and more or less veracious traveller Captain Longbow has a great grievance with the public. He claims that during a rece...

The Ribbon Problem
If we take the ribbon by the ends and pu...

The Japanese Ladies And The Carpet
Three Japanese ladies possessed a square...

The Eight Clowns
This illustration represents a troupe of...

The Wizard's Arithmetic
Once upon a time a knight went to consult a certain famous wizard. The interview had to do with an affair of the heart; but after the...

The Chinese Railways
Our illustration shows the plan of a Chi...

The Thirty-one Game
This is a game that used to be (and may be to this day, for aught I know) a favourite means of swindling employed by card-sharpers at...

Catching The Hogs
In the illustration Hendrick and Katrün are seen engaged in the exhilarating sport of attempting the capture of a couple of hogs...

Making A Flag
A good dissection puzzle in so few as tw...

The Perplexed Cellarman
Here is a little puzzle culled from the traditions of an old monastery in the west of England. Abbot Francis, it seems, was a very wo...

The Spider And The Fly
Inside a rectangular room, measuring 30 ...

The Broken Chessboard
There is a story of Prince Henry, son of William the Conqueror, afterwards Henry I., that is so frequently recorded in the old chroni...

The Game Of Kayles
Nearly all of our most popular games are of very ancient origin, though in many cases they have been considerably developed and impro...

Romeo's Second Journey
"It was a sheer stroke of luck on your part, Hawkhurst," he added. "Here is a much easier puzzle, because it is capabl...

The Frogs Who Would A-wooing Go
While we were vainly attempting to solve this puzzle, the Professor arranged on the table ten of the frogs in two rows, as they will ...

Romeo And Juliet
For some time we tried to make these little reptiles perform the feat allotted to them, and failed. The Professor, however, would not...

The Frogs And Tumblers
"What do you think of these?"...

The Coinage Puzzle
He made a rough diagram, and placed a crown and a florin in two of the divisions, as indicated in the illustration. "Now...

The Postage Stamps Puzzles
"Now, instead of coins we'll substitute postage-stamps. Take ten current English stamps, nine of them being all of different val...

The Buried Treasure
The problem of the Buried Treasure was of quite a different character. A young fellow named Dawkins, just home from Australia, was in...

The Mystery Of Ravensdene Park
The mystery of Ravensdene Park, which I will now present, was a tragic affair, as it involved the assassination of Mr. Cyril Hastings...

The Runaway Motor-car
The little affair of the "Runaway Motor-car" is a good illustration of how a knowledge of some branch of puzzledom may be p...

The Cornish Cliff Mystery
Though the incident known in the Club as "The Cornish Cliff Mystery" has never been published, every one remembers the case...

Under The Mistletoe Bough
"At the party was a widower who has but lately come into these parts," says the record; "and, to be sure, he was an ex...

The Silver Cubes
The last extract that I will give is one that will, I think, interest those readers who may find some of the above puzzles too easy. ...

The Ambiguous Photograph
A good example of the lighter kind of problem that occasionally comes before them is that which is known amongst them by the name of ...

The Three Teacups
One young lady—of whom our fair ...

The Eleven Pennies
A guest asked some one to favour him w...

The Christmas Geese
Squire Hembrow, from Weston Zoyland—wherever that may be—proposed the following little arithmetical puzzle, from which it...

The Chalked Numbers
"We laughed greatly at a pretty j...

Tasting The Plum Puddings
"Everybody, as I suppose, knows w...

Crossing The Moat
I was now face to face with the castle moat, which was, indeed, very wide and very deep. Alas! I could not swim, and my chance of esc...

The Royal Gardens
It was now daylight, and still had I to pass through the royal gardens outside of the castle walls. These gardens had once been laid ...

Bridging The Ditch
I now did truly think that at last was I a free man, but I had quite forgot that I must yet cross a deep ditch before I might get rig...

The Mysterious Rope
My dungeon did not lie beneath the moa...

The Underground Maze
The only way out of the yard that I now was in was to descend a few stairs that led up into the centre (A) of an underground maze, th...

The Secret Lock
When I did at last reach the door it was fast closed, and on sliding a panel set before a grating the light that came in thereby show...

The Riddle Of St Edmondsbury
"It used to be told at St. Edmondsbury," said Father Peter on one occasion, "that many years ago they were so overrun ...

The Riddle Of The Frogs' Ring
One Christmas the Abbot offered a prize of a large black jack mounted in silver, to be engraved with the name of the monk who should ...

The Riddle Of The Crusaders
On another occasion a certain knight, Sir Ralph de Bohun, was a guest of the monks at Riddlewell Abbey. Towards the close of a sumptu...

The Riddle Of The Cellarer
Then Abbot David looked grave, and said that this incident brought to his mind the painful fact that John the Cellarer had been caugh...

The Riddle Of The Sack Wine
One evening, when seated at table, Brother Benjamin was called upon by the Abbot to give the riddle that was that day demanded of him...

The Riddle Of The Tiled Hearth
It seems that it was Friar Andrew who first managed to "rede the riddle of the Tiled Hearth." Yet it was a simple enough li...

The Riddle Of The Pilgrims
One day, when the monks were seated at their repast, the Abbot announced that a messenger had that morning brought news that a number...

Lady Isabel's Casket
Sir Hugh's young kinswoman and ward, L...

The Riddle Of The Fish-pond
At the bottom of the Abbey meads was a...

The Snail On The Flagstaff
It would often be interesting if we could trace back to their origin many of the best known puzzles. Some of them would be found to h...

The Amulet
A strange man was one day found loitering in the courtyard of the castle, and the retainers, noticing that his speech had a foreign a...

The Crescent And The Cross
When Sir Hugh's kinsman, Sir John de Collingham, came back from the Holy Land, he brought with him a flag bearing the sign of a cresc...

The Donjon Keep Window
On one occasion Sir Hugh greatly perplexed his chief builder. He took this worthy man to the walls of the donjon keep and pointed to ...

The Archery Butt
The butt or target used in archery at Solvamhall was not marked out in concentric rings as at the present day, but was prepared in fa...

The Noble Demoiselle
Seated one night in the hall of the castle, Sir Hugh desired the company to fill their cups and listen while he told the tale of his ...

The Game Of Bandy-ball
Bandy-ball, cambuc, or goff (the game so well known to-day by the name of golf), is of great antiquity, and was a special favourite a...

Tilting At The Ring
Another favourite sport at the castle was tilting at the ring. A horizontal bar was fixed in a post, and at the end of a hanging supp...

The Manciple's Puzzle
The Manciple was an officer who had the care of buying victuals for an Inn of Court—like the Temple. The particular individual ...

The Puzzle Of The Canon's Yeoman
This person joined the party on the road. "'God save,' quoth he, 'this jolly company! Fast have I ridden,' saith he, 'for your s...

Chaucer's Puzzle
Chaucer himself accompanied the pilgri...

The Great Dispute Between The Friar And The Sompnour
Chaucer records the painful fact that the harmony of the pilgrimage was broken on occasions by the quarrels between the Friar and the...

The Dyer's Puzzle
One of the pilgrims was a Dyer, but Chaucer tells us nothing about him, the Tales being incomplete. Time after time the company had p...

The Haberdasher's Puzzle
Many attempts were made to induce the ...

The Friar's Puzzle
The Friar was a merry fellow, with a sweet tongue and twinkling eyes. "Courteous he was and lowly of service. There was a man no...

The Parson's Puzzle
The Parson was a really devout and good man. "A better priest I trow there nowhere is." His virtues and charity made him be...

The Squire's Puzzle
The young Squire, twenty years of age, was the son of the Knight that accompanied him on the historic pilgrimage. He was undoubtedly ...

The Franklin's Puzzle
"A Franklin was in this company; ...

The Puzzle Of The Doctor Of Physic
This Doctor, learned though he was, for "In all this world to him there was none like To speak of physic and of surgery," a...

The Ploughman's Puzzle
The Ploughman—of whom Chaucer r...

The Puzzle Of The Prioress
The Prioress, who went by the name of Eglantine, is best remembered on account of Chaucer's remark, "And French she spake full f...

The Monk's Puzzle
The Monk that went with the party was a great lover of sport. "Greyhounds he had as swift as fowl of flight: Of riding and of hu...

The Shipman's Puzzle
Of this person we are told, "He knew well all the havens, as they were, From Gothland to the Cape of Finisterre, And every creek...

The Sompnour's Puzzle
The Sompnour, or Summoner, who, according to Chaucer, joined the party of pilgrims, was an officer whose duty was to summon delinquen...

The Cook's Puzzle
We find that there was a cook among the company; and his services were no doubt at times in great request, "For he could roast a...

The Weaver's Puzzle
When the Weaver brought out a square piece of beautiful cloth, daintily embroidered with lions and castles, as depicted in the illust...

The Man Of Law's Puzzle
The Sergeant of the Law was "full rich of excellence. Discreet he was, and of great reverence." He was a very busy man, but...

The Merchant's Puzzle
Of the Merchant the poet writes, "Forsooth he was a worthy man withal." He was thoughtful, full of schemes, and a good mani...

The Nun's Puzzle
"I trow there be not one among ye," quoth the Nun, on a later occasion, "that doth not know that many monks do oft pas...

The Puzzle Of The Squire's Yeoman
Chaucer says of the Squire's Yeoman, who formed one of his party of pilgrims, "A forester was he truly as I guess," and tel...

The Clerk Of Oxenford's Puzzle
The silent and thoughtful Clerk of Oxe...

The Tapiser's Puzzle
Then came forward the Tapiser, who was...

The Carpenter's Puzzle
The Carpenter produced the carved wooden pillar that he is seen holding in the illustration, wherein the knight is propounding his kn...

The Host's Puzzle
Perhaps no puzzle of the whole collection caused more jollity or was found more entertaining than that produced by the Host of the &q...

The Wife Of Bath's Riddles
The frolicsome Wife of Bath, when called upon to favour the company, protested that she had no aptitude for such things, but that her...

The Pardoner's Puzzle
The gentle Pardoner, "that straig...

The Miller's Puzzle
The Miller next took the company aside...

The Knight's Puzzle
This worthy man was, as Chaucer tells us, "a very perfect, gentle knight," and "In many a noble army had he been: At m...

The Dorcas Society
At the close of four and a half months' hard work, the ladies of a certain Dorcas Society were so delighted with the completion of a ...

The Adventurous Snail
A simple version of the puzzle of the cl...

The Four Princes
The dominions of a certain Eastern monarch formed a perfectly square tract of country. It happened that the king one day discovered t...

Plato And The Nines
Both in ancient and in modern times the number nine has been considered to possess peculiarly mystic qualities. We know, for instance...

Noughts And Crosses
Every child knows how to play this game. You make a square of nine cells, and each of the two players, playing alternately, puts his ...

Ovid's Game
Having examined "Noughts and Crosses," we will now consider an extension of the game that is distinctly mentioned in the works of Ovi...

The Farmer's Oxen
A child may propose a problem that a sage cannot answer. A farmer propounded the following question: "That ten-acre meadow of mine wi...

The Great Grangemoor Mystery
Mr. Stanton Mowbray was a very wealthy man, a reputed millionaire, residing in that beautiful old mansion that has figured so much in...

Cutting A Wood Block
An economical carpenter had a block of wood measuring eight inches long by four inches wide by three and three-quarter inches deep. H...

The Tramps And The Biscuits
Four merry tramps bought, borrowed, found, or in some other manner obtained possession of a box of biscuits, which they agreed to divi...

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Most Popular Content 2017-10-20

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The Honeycomb Puzzle.
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The Crescent And The Cross
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The Wife Of Bath's Riddles
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The Dovetailed Block.
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The Riddle Of The Pilgrims
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The Perplexed Cellarman
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A Reversible Magic Square
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The Three Motor-cars
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Painting The Lamp-posts.
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A Deal In Apples.