Wednesday, 26 November 2008


Well, I promised puzzles so I had better deliver. I am sure that you will recognise the following style of puzzle. What is a surprise is how long they have been around. According to wikipedia, here, some of the earliest examples of this sort of problem appeared in a book called Problems to Sharpen the Young (actually it was Propositiones ad acuendos juvenes) which was published by Alcuin of York who lived from 735 - 804.

A man had to take a wolf, a goat and a cabbage across the river. The only boat available could only carry two of them at a time. However, he had to transport all of them to the other side in good condition. How did he achieve this?

I went to the university of York and one of the colleges their is called Alcuin. It looks like this.

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