• # Brain Teasers & Puzzles

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• You are the ruler of a medieval empire and you are about to have a celebration tomorrow. The celebration is the most important party you have ever hosted. You’ve got 1000 bottles of wine you were planning to open for the celebration, but you find out that one of them is poisoned.

The poison exhibits no symptoms until death. Death occurs within ten to twenty hours after consuming even the minutest amount of poison.

You have over a thousand slaves at your disposal and just under 24 hours to determine which single bottle is poisoned.

You have a handful of prisoners about to be executed, and it would mar your celebration to have anyone else killed.

What is the smallest number of prisoners you must have to drink from the bottles to be absolutely sure to find the poisoned bottle within 24 hours?

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• The king’s only children, Abel, Benjamin and Paula, went into the forest with their friend, the elderly Sir Kay. They wanted to try their skill with their bows and arrows. Each of them started with same number of arrows.
When all the arrows had been shot, it was discovered that:

1. Sir Kay brought down more game than Princess Paula.
2. Prince Benjamin captured more than Sir Kay.
3. Princess Paula’s arrows went truer than Prince Abel’s.

Who was the best marksman that day?

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• Meanwhile, back at the castle, the ogre found that the
boots he had picked at random from his dark storeroom
were all six-league boots. He threw them back. He
needed seven-league boots so that he could cover more
territory.
If in that dark storeroom he had four six-league boots
and eight seven-league boots, how many boots did he
have to pull out to make sure he had a pair of sevenleague
boots?

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skills, and so he sent his two eldest to the court magidan
for potions to help fight the ogre.
The magician kept his magic hidden, mindful of the
danger of his potent potion falling into the wrong
hands. In a secret but inconvenient compartment in his
laboratory, he hoarded:
1. four ogre-fighters
2. three dragon-destroyers
3. two evil wizard-vanquishers
How many potions did he have to reach for in order
to make sure that he could give an ogre-fighter to each
of the king’s two sons?

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• To enlist the help of the other kingdoms, the king talked to the queen about inviting neighboring royalty to dinner. This put the queen into a royal snit. Theirs was not a very wealthy kingdom and the royal dinnerware was in a disgraceful condition. Apart from ordinary dishes for everyday use, all that the royal pantry contained were a few dinner plates of three different
dinner patterns:
1. five silver ones with birds
2. six crystal with seashells
3. seven gold with the royal crest
They were all stored in disarray on a very dark top shelf of the royal pantry. Only those would be suitable for entertaining other royalty.
If the queen didn’t want to climb up to the top shelf twice, how many dinner plates would she have to take down to be sure she had matching dinner plates for herself, her royal spouse, and for the neighbouring king and queen?

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• The local king, determined to defend his kingdom from that wicked ogre, sent his two eldest sons to the court swordsmith.
The swordsmith kept a supply of special ogrefighters (four daggers, three swords and two axes) locked in a chest. The two princes insisted on having the same kind of weapon.
How many weapons did the swordsmith have to take out of the chest to be sure he could meet the demands of the princes?

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• Planning to roam the countryside and prey upon its
defenseless people, the ogre reached into his dark
closet. There he had stored four six-league boots and
eight seven-league boots. How many boots did he have
to pull out of the closet to make sure he had a pair that
matched?

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Earth, the Martians held a dinner party for the crew. In
all there were eight at the table: Aken, Bal, Mun, Mark,
Wora, Jones, Rider and Smith.
a. One was a history buff.
b. One was a whiz at math.
c. One was very tall.
d. One was Aken’s friend.
f. One was a pilot.
g. One was a rock collector.
h. One spoke a number of languages.
1. The person who was Aken’s friend sat directly
opposite Mark.
2. Wora sat between the math whiz and Aken’s
friend.
3. The tall one sat opposite Wora, with Aken to her
left.
4. Smith, who had no real friends among the group,
sat to the right of Mun who towered over the rest
of the group.
5. The one who had yellow feathers sat opposite Bal,
between Mun and the one who spoke a number of
languages.
6. Jones was to the right of the rock collector and
opposite the pilot who was next to Rider.
Who was Aken’s friend?

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• Four Martians from different groups, the Uti,
Grundi, Yomi and Rafi, gathered for an intraplanetary
conference to discuss the problem of the visiting Earthlings.
As was appropriate for diplomatic envoys, all
were beautifully feathered in different colors, one red,
one green, one blue and the fourth brown. Their names
were Aken, Bal, Mun and Wora.
1. Before the meeting, the Uti had a pleasant breakfast
with Mun.
2. After debating with the Martians in the blue and
the brown feathers, Bal and the Yomi were so angry
that they tore a wingful of feathers out of them
before they were stopped.
3. Wora and the Rafi, however, agreed with the diplomat
with brown feathers, though they disagreed
with the red-feathered Grundi.
Who is the blue-feathered diplomat and to what
group does he or she belong?

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• Kim Jones, Jan Robinson and Pat Smith are the officers
of the spaceship. They serve as the craft’s pilot,
engineer and biochemist, though not necessarily in that
order. Because they have difficulty with Martian names,
they nickname the three Martians who work with them
Jones, Smith and Robinson.
1. Robinson is a Yomi.
2. Jones doesn’t speak any language other than
Martian.
3. Most Martian linguists are Uti.
4. The Martian who serves as interpreter respects the
Martian whose name is the same as the biochemist’s.
5. The Martian whose name is the same as the biochemist
is a Grundi.
6. Jan Robinson beat the engineer at chess.
Who is the pilot?

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