Avoiding a Scandal

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Midnatt_av_Anders_Zorn_1891.jpg

Three beautiful women and their jealous husbands want to cross a river, but the boat will hold only two people at a time. How can they arrange the crossing if no woman is to remain with a man unless her husband is present?

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A Literary Knight’s Tour

The knight’s tour is a recreation familiar to chessplayers: Move a knight about an empty chessboard so as to visit each square exactly once.

On this board, each square contains a syllable. Collect them in the right order and you’ll compose a six-line quotation from Shakespeare. What is it?

(Hint: Start on e4, “to”.)

A Literary Knight's Tour

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The Mutilated Chessboard

Take an ordinary chessboard and cut off two diagonally opposite corners. Now: Is it possible to tile the remaining 62 squares with 31 dominoes?

This calls for inspiration rather than trial and error. Most people see the solution immediately or not at all.

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“Ambiguous Lines”

First published in 1671, this anonymous verse came with a simple instruction that would render it into sense. Can you discover it?

I saw a peacock with a fiery tail
I saw a blazing comet drop down hail
I saw a cloud with ivy circled round
I saw a sturdy oak creep on the ground
I saw a pismire swallow up a whale
I saw a raging sea brim full of ale
I saw a venice glass sixteen foot deep
I saw a well full of men’s tears that weep
I saw their eyes all in a flame of fire
I saw a house as big as the moon and higher
I saw the sun even in the midst of night
I saw the man that saw this wondrous sight.
I saw a pack of cards gnawing a bone
I saw a dog seated on Britain’s throne
I saw King George shut up within a box
I saw an orange driving a fat ox
I saw a butcher not a twelvemonth old
I saw a great-coat all of solid gold
I saw two buttons telling of their dreams
I saw my friends who wished I’d quite these themes.

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Kangaroo Words

Kangaroo words contain smaller versions of themselves. INDOLENT, for example, contains the letters I-D-L-E, in order. Can you find the hidden synonyms in each of these words?

  • ABIDE
  • ALLOCATE
  • ASSEVERATE
  • ASTOUND
  • CALUMNIES
  • CATACOMB
  • DEPOSITORY
  • DESTRUCTION
  • ENCOURAGE
  • HONORABLE
  • ILLUMINATED
  • INEFFECTIVE
  • REVOLUTION
  • SCOUNDREL
  • TRANSGRESSION
  • UMPTEENTH
  • UNSIGHTLY
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Round and Round

http://www.teamten.com/lawrence/puzzles/mobius_chess.html

A chess puzzle set on a Mobius strip, via Lawrence Kesteloot’s puzzles page.

There are no pieces on the hidden sides, and don’t worry about the direction of the black pawn. White to move and mate in two.

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Breakfast of Champions

Christopher Columbus's Egg Puzzle

“Christopher Columbus’s Egg Puzzle,” as it appeared in Sam Loyd’s Cyclopedia of Puzzles (1914):

The famous trick-chicken, Americus Vespucius, after whom our great country was named, showed a clever puzzle wherein you are asked to lay nine eggs so as to form the greatest possible number of rows of three-in-line. King Puzzlepate has only succeeded in getting eight rows, as shown in the picture, but Tommy says a smart chicken can do better than that!

Can you?

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