Sunday, May 30, 2010

“The Canals on Mars” 1914 mathematical puzzle designed by Sam Loyd

Here is a map of the newly discovered cities and waterways on our nearest neighbor planet, Mars. Start at the city marked T, at the south pole, and see if you can spell a complete English sentence by making a tour of all the cities, visiting each city only once, and returning to the starting point.

When this puzzle originally appeared in a magazine, more than fifty thousand readers reported, “There is no possible way.” Yet it is a very simple puzzle.

[Originally published in Cyclopedia of 5000 Puzzles (1914), by Sam Loyd]

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