The Sunday Telegraph - Sunday - - Front Page -

A SE­RIES OF MATHS-BASED PUZ­ZLES BY DAVID WELLS A Strange Din­ner Party The Vic­to­ri­ans loved puz­zle books, and one of the most pro­lific au­thors was Pro­fes­sor Hoff­mann – in real life a lawyer called An­gelo John Lewis. This brain-teaser comes from his most fa­mous book, Puz­zles Old and New (1893). An old gentle­man was asked who had dined with him on Christ­mas Day. “Well, we were quite a fam­ily party,” he replied. “There was my fa­ther’s brother-in-law, my brother’s fa­ther-in-law, my fa­ther-in-law’s brother-in-law, and my brother-in-law’s fa­ther-in-law.” It after­wards tran­spired that the old gentle­man had dined alone. Yet his state­ment was cor­rect. How could this be? If you would like a hint to get started, see the bot­tom of this col­umn. An­swer at end of Puz­zles. THAT’S CU­RI­OUS… Here’s an­other puz­zle which Pro­fes­sor Hoff­mann in­cluded in his book Puz­zles Old and New: What is the dif­fer­ence be­tween six dozen dozen and half a dozen dozen? An­swer at end of Puz­zles. David Wells’s lat­est book is Games and Math­e­mat­ics: Sub­tle Con­nec­tions (Cam­bridge UP £15.99)

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