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**TEORY OF FORMAL SYSTEMS
**

FIRST ORDER LOGIC

TE TAO IS SIENT

�&�m@Ic Jo �m Tln n�< m

The Riddle of

Dracula and

Other Logical

Puzzles

I

PRENTCE-HALL, IC., Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey

Wat Is the Name of This Book?-The Riddle of Dracula

and Other Logical Puzzles, by Raymond M. Smullyan

Copyright " 1978 by Raymond M. Smullyan

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be

reproduced in any form or by any means, except

for the inclusion of brief quotatons in a review,

without permission in writing from the publisher.

Prnted in the United States of America

Prentce-Hall Interational Inc. , London

Prentice-Hall of Australia, Pty. Ltd. , Sydney

Prentice-Hall of Canada, Ltd. , Toronto

Prentice-Hall of India Private Ltd. , New Delhi

Prentice-Hall of Japan, Inc. , Tokyo

Prentice-Hall of Southeast Asia Pte. Ltd. , Singapore

Whitehall Books Limited, Wellington, New Zealand

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

IÎbraryofLongress LalalogÎng ÎnVublÎCalÎon Lala

Smullyan, Raymond M.

What is the name of this book?

1. Puzzles. I. Title

GV1493. S63 793. 7'3 77-18692

ISBN 0-13-955088-7

Dedicated to

Linda Wetzel and Joseph Bevando,

whose wise counsels have been invaluable.

Contents

Part One iLOGICAL RECREATIONS

1. Fooled?

3

2. Puzzles and Monkey Tricks 7

Solutions

1 4

3. Knights and Knaves 20

Solutions 26

4. Alice i n the Forest of Forgetfulness 36

Solutions

46

Part To. PORTIA'S CASKETS AD

OTHER MYSTERIES

5. The Mystery of Portia' s Caskets 55

Solutions 62

6. From the Files of Inspector Craig 67

Solutions 74

7. How to Avoid Werewolves-And Other

Practical Bits of Advice 82

Solutions

90

8. Logic Puzzles 99

Solutions

1 1 0

9. Bellini or Cellini? 1 18

Solutions 124

Part Three � WEIRD TALES

10. The Island of Baal

Solutions

11. The Island of Zombies

Solutions

12. Is Dracula Still Alive?

Solutions

1 35

1 42

149

153

158

169

Pat Four. LOGIC. IS A M=S:LENDORED

THING

13. Logic and Life

14. How to Prove Anything

15. From Paradox to Truth

Solutions

16. Godel' s Discovery

183

200

21 3

220

225

My Thas to

First I wish to thank my friends Robert and Ilse Cowen and

their ten-year-old- daughter, Lenore, who went through this

manuscript together and provided many helpful sugges

tions. (Lenore, incidentally, suspected all along the true

answer to the key question of Chapter 4: Does Tweedledoo

really exist, or is he merely a fabrication of Humpty

Dumpty?)

I am grateful to Greer and Melvin Fitting (authors of

the charming and useful book In Prise of Simple Things) for

their kindly interest in my work and for having called it to the

attention of Oscar Collier of Prentice-Hall. I also think

Melvin should be thanked for actually appearing in this

book (thereby refuting my proof that he couldn't appear! ) .

It was a pleasure working with Oscar Collier and others

at Prentice-Hall. Mrs. Ilene McGrath who first copy- edited

the text made many suggestions which I have gratefully

adopted. I thank Dorothy Lachmann for her expert handling

of production details.

I wsh to again mention my two dedicatees, Joseph

Bevando and Linda Wetzel, who have been heart and soul

with this book from its very inception.

My dear wife, Blanche, has helped me with many a

query. It is my hope that this book will enable her to decide

whether she is married to a knight or a knave.

•

Î

1

0

F

ooled?

1.

Was I Fooled?

My introduction to logic was at the age of six. It happened

this way: On April 1, 1925, I was sick in bed with grippe, or

fu, or something. I the moring my brother Emile (ten

years my senior) came into my bedroom and said: "Well,

Raymond, today is April Fool' s Day, and I will fool you as

you have never been fooled before! " I waited all day long for

him to fool me, but he didn' t. Late that night, my mother

asked me, "Why don' t you go to sleep?" I replied, "I' m

waiting for Emile to fool me. " My mother turned to Emile

and said, "Emile, will you please fool the child! " Emile then

tured to me, and the following dialogue ensued:

Emile I So, you expected me to fool you, didn' t you?

Raymond I Yes.

Emile I But I didn' t, did I?

Raymond I No.

Emile I But you expected me to, didn' t you?

Raymond I Yes.

Emile I So I fooled you, didn' t II

Well, I recall lying in bed long after the lights were tured

out wondering whether or not I had really been fooled. On

the one hand, if I wasn' t fooled, then I did not get what I

FOOLED 3

expected, hence I was fooled. (This was Emile' s argument. )

But wth equal reason it can be said that i I was fooled, then

I did get what I expected, so then, in what sense was I

fooled. So, was I fooled or wasn' t I?

I shall not answer this puzzle now; we shall return to it

in one form or another several times in the course of this

book. It embodies a subtle principle which shall be one of

our maj or themes.

2. Was I Lying?

A related incident occurred many years later whe: I was a

graduate student at the University of Chicago. I was a pro

fessional magician at the time, but my magic business was

slow for a brief period and I had to supplement my income

somehow. I decided to try gettng a j ob as a salesman. I

applied to a vacuum cleaner company and had to take an

aptitude test. One of the questions was, "Do you obj ect to

telling a little lie every now and again?" Now, at the time I

definitely did obj ect-I particularly object to salesmen

lying and misrepresenting their products. But I thought to

myself that i I truthfully voiced my objection, then I

wouldn' t get the job. Hence I lied and said "No. "

Riding back home after the interview, I had the fol

lowing thoughts. I asked myself whether I objected to the lie

I had given to the sales company. My answer was "No. "

Well, now, since I didn' t obj ect to that particular lie, then it

follows that I don't obj ect to all lies, hence my "No" answer

on the test was not a lie, but the truth!

To this day it is not quite clear to me whether I was

lying or not. I guess logic might require me to say that I was

telling the truth, since the assumption that I was lying leads

to a contradiction. So, logic requires me to believe I was

telling the truth. But at the time, I sure felt as though I was

lying!

Speaking of lying, I must tell you the incident of Bertrand

4 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

Russell and the philosopher G. E. Moore. Russell desa

crbed Moore'as one of the most truthful people he had ever

met. He once asked Moore, "Have you ever lied?" Moore

replied, "Yes. " In descrbing this incident, Russel wrote:

"I think this is the only lie Moore ever told! "

Te incident of my experience with the sales company

raises the question of whether it is possible for a person to

lie without knowing it. I would answer "No. " To me, lyng

means making a statement, not which is false, but which one

believes to be false. Indeed i a person makes a statement

which happens to be true, but which he believes to be false,

then I would say he is telling a lie.

I read of the following incident in a textbook on

abnormal psychology. The doctors in a mental institution

were thinking of releasing a certain schizophrenic patient.

They decided to give him a lie- detector test. One of the

questions they asked him was, "Are you Napoleon?" He

replied, "No. " The machine showed he was lying.

I also read somewhere the following incident showing how

animals can sometimes dissimulate. An experiment was

conducted with a chimpanzee in a room in which a banana

was suspended by a string from the center of the ceiling.

The banana was too high to reach. The room was empty

except for the chimp, the experimenter, the banana and

string, and several wooden boxes of various sizes. The

purpose of the' experiment was to determine whether the

chimp was clever enough to make a scaffolding of the boxes,

climb up, and reach the banana. What really happened was

this: The experimenter stood in the corner of the room to

watch the proceedings, The chimp came over to the corer

and anxiously tugged the experimenter by the sleeve indi

cating that he wanted him to move. Slowly the experimenter

followed the chimp. When they came to about the center of

the room, the chimp suddenly jumped on his shoulders and

got the banana.

FOOLED 5

3 q The Joke Was on Me

A fellow graduate student of mine at the University of

Chicago had two brothers, aged six and eight. I was U

frequent visitor to their house and often did tricks for the

children. One day 1 came and said, "1 have a trick in whch I

could t you both into lions. " To my surprise, one of

them said, "Okay, t us into lions. " 1 replied, "Well, uh,

really, u, I shouldn' t do that, because there is no way 1

could tum you back again. " The little one said, "I don' t

care; 1 want you to tum us into lions anyway. " 1 replied,

"No, really, there' s no way 1 can tum you back. " The older

one shouted, "I want you to tur us into lions!" The little one

then asked, "How do you tum us into lions?" I replied, "By

saying the magic words. " One of them asked, "What are the

magic words?" 1 replied, "If I told you the magic words, I

would be saying them, and so you would tum into lions. "

They thought about this for a while, and then one of them

asked, " Aren' t there any magic words which would bring us

back?" 1 replied: "Yes, there are, but the trouble is this. I I

said the first magic words, then not only you two but every

body in the world-including myself-would tum into U

lion. And lions can' t tlk, so there would be no one left to

say the other magic words to bring us back. " The older one

then said, "Write them down! " The little one said, "But I

can' t read! " I replied, "No, no, wting them down is out of

the question; even if they were wrtten down rather than

said, everone in the world would still turn into a lion. "

They said, "Oh. "

About a week later I met the eight-year-old, and he

said, "Smullyan, there' s something I' ve been wanting to ask

you; someting which has been puzzling me. " I replied,

"Yes?" He said. "How did you ever lear the magic words?"

6 LOGCAL RECREATIONS

Puzzles and

0 onkey Tricks

SOME GOOD OLD-TIMERS

We will start with some good old-time puzzles which have

amused many a generation. Some of these, many of you

already know, but even for those in the know, I have a few

new wrinkles.

4 ø Wose Picture A I Looking At?

This puzzle was extremely popular during my childhood,

but today it seems less widely known. The remarkable thing

about this problem is that most people get the wrong

answer but insist (despite all argument) that they are right.

I recall one occasion about 50 years ago when we had some

company and had an argument about this problem which

seemed to last hours, and in which those who had the right

answer j ust could not convince the others that they were

right. The problem is this.

A man was looking at a portrait. Someone asked him,

"Whose picture are you looking at?" He replied: "Brothers

and sisters have I none, but this man' s father is my father' s

son. " ("This man' s father" means, of course, the father of

the man in the picture. )

Whose picture was the man looking at?

PUZZLES AD MONKY TICKS 7

5.

Suppose, i the above situation, the man had instead

answered: "Brothers and sisters have I none, but this man' s

.

son is my father' s son. " Now whose picture is the man

looking at?

.

6. Wat Happens If an Iresistible Cannonball Hits

an Immovable Post?

**This is another problem from my childhood which I like
**

very much. By an irresistible cannonball we shall mean a

cannonball which knocks over everyhing in its way. By an

immovable post we shall mean a post which cannot be

knocked over by anything. So what happens if an irresis�

tble cannonball hits an immovable post?

7

@

The following is a very simple problem which many of you

know. Twenty-four red socks and 24 blue socks are lying in

a drawer in a dark room. What is the minimum number of

socks I must take out of the drawer which will guarantee

that I have at least two socks of the same color?

8.

A new twst on the above problem: Suppose some blue

socks and the same number of red socks are in a drawer.

Suppose it turs out that the minimum number of socks I

must pick in order to be sure of getting at least one pair of

the same color is the same as the minimum number I must

pick in order to be sure of getting at least two socks of

different colors. How many socks are in the drawer?

9.

Here is a well-known logic puzzle: Given that there are more

8 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

inhabitants of New York City than there are hairs on the

head of any inhabitant, and that no inhabitant is totally

bald, does it necessarily follow that there must be at least

tw inhabitants with exactly the same number of hairs?

Here is a little variant of this problem: In the town of

Podunk, the following facts are true:

( 1) No two inhabitants have exactly the same number of

hairs.

(2) No inhabitant has exactly 518 hairs.

(3) There are more imhabitants than there are hairs on the

head of any one inhabitant.

Wat is the largest possible number of inhabitants of

Po dunk?

10 ø Wo Was the Murderer?

This story concerns a caravan going through the Sahara

desert. One night they pitched tents. Our three principle

characters are A, B, and C. A hated C and decided to

murder him by putting poison in the water of his canteen

(tis would be C' s only water supply) . Quite independently

of this, B also decided to murder C, so (wthout realizing

that C' s water was already poisoned) he drilled a tiny hole

in C' s canteen so that the water would slowly leak out. As a

result, several days later C died of thirst. The question is,

who was the murderer, A or B? According to one argument,

B was the murderer, since C never did drink the poison put

in by A, hence he would have died even if A hadn' t poisoned

the water. According to the opposite argument, A was the

real murderer, since B' s actions had absolutely no effect on

the outcome; once A poisoned the water, C was doomed,

hence A would have died even if B had not drlled the hole.

Which argument is correct?

At this point I' ll tell you the j oke of a woodchopper from the

Middle East who came looking for a j ob at a lumber camp.

PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS 9

The foreman said, "I don' t know i this is the kind of job you

want; here we chop trees. " The woodchopper said, "That' s

precisely the sort of work I do. " The foreman replied,

" Okay, here' s an axe-let' s see how long it takes you to

.

chop down this tree here. " The woodchopper went over to

the tree and felled it with one blow. The foreman, amazed,

said, " Okay, tr that big one over there. " The woodchopper

went over to the tree-biff, bam-in two strokes the tree

was down. "Fantastic! " cred the foreman. " Of course you

are hired, but how did you ever lear to chop like that?"

" Oh, " he replied, "I' ve had plenty of practice in the Sahara

Forest. " The foreman thought for a moment. "You mean, "

he said, "the Sahara Desert. " "Oh yes, " replied the wood

chopper, "it is now! "

11. Another Legal Puzzle.

Two men were being tried for a murder. The jury found one

of them guilty and the other one not guilty. The judge

turned to the guilty one and said: "This is the strangest case

I have ever come across! Though your guilt has been estab

lished beyond any reasonable doubts, the law compels me

to set you free. "

How do you explain this?

12 . Two Indians.

Two American Indians were sitting on a log-a big Indian

and a little Indian. The little Indian was the son of the big

Indian, but the big Indian was not the father of the little

Indian.

How do you explain that?

139 The Clock That Stopped.

Here is a cute simple old-time puzzle: A man owned no

watch, but he had an accurate clock which, however, he

sometimes forgot to wind. Once when this happened he

1 0 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

went to the house of a friend, passed the evening with him,

went back home, and set his clock. How could he do this

without knowing beforehand the l ength of the trip?

14" Problem of the Bear.

The interesting thing about this problem is that many

people have heard it and know the answer, but their reasons

for the answer are insufficient. So even if you think you

know the answer, be sure and consult the solution.

A man is 100 yards due south of a bear. He walks 1 00

yards due east, then faces due north, fires his gun due

north, and hits the bear.

What color was the bear?

B. MONKEY TRICKS

At first I was undecided what title to give this book; I

thought of "Recreational Logic, " "Logical Recreations and

Diversions, " and others, but I was not too satisfied. Then I

decided to consult Roget's Thesaurus: I looked in the index

under "Recreations" and was directed to section 840 entit

led "Amusement. " There I came across such choice items

as "fun, " "frolic, " "merriment, " jollity, " "heyday, " "jocos

i," "droller, " "buffoonery," "tomfoolery, " "mummer. "

I the next paragraph I came across "play, " "play at, "

"romps, " "gambols, " "pranks, " "antic, " "lark, " "gam

bade, " "monkey trick. "1 Well, when I saw "monkey trick, " I

laughed and said to my wife, "Hey, maybe I should call this

book "Monkey Tricks. " Delightful as that title is, however,

it would have been misleading for this book as a whole, since

most portions can hardly be described as monkey tricks.

But the title serves perfectly for the items of this section, as

the reader will soon reali ze.

'Itlics mine.

PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS 1 1

15. Problem of the Two Coins.

Two American coins add up to thirty cents, yet one of them

is not a nickel. What coins are they?

16.

Tose of you who know anything about Catholicism, do you

happen to know if the Catholic Church allows a man to

marr his widow's sister?

17.

A man lived on the twenty-fith foor of a thirty-story apart

ment building. Every moring (except Saturdays and Sun

days) he got into the elevator, got off at the ground foor,

and went to work. In the evening, he came home, got into

the elevator, got off at the twenty-fourth foor, and walked

up one fight.

Why did he get off at the twenty-fourth foor instead of

the twenty-fifth?

18. A Question of Grammar.

**Those of you who are interested in questions of good gram
**

matcal usage, is it more corect to say the yolk is white OI

the yolk are white?

19. A Rate-Time Problem.

A train leaves from Boston to New York. An hour later, a

tain leaves from New York to Boston. The two trains are

going at exactly the same speed. Which train wll be nearer

to Boston when they meet?

20

.

A Question of Slope.

On a certain house, the two halves of the roof are unequally

1 2 LOGCAL RECREATONS

pitched; one half slopes downward at an angle of 60° and

the other half at an angle of 70°. Suppose a rooster lays an

egg right on the peak. On which side of the roof would the

egg fall?

21 .

How Many9's? m

A certain street contains 100 buildings. A sign-maker i s

called to number the houses from 1 to 100. He has to order

numerals to do the job. Without using pencil and paper, can

you figure out in your head how many 9' s he will need?

22. The Racetrack. m

A certain snail takes an hour and a half to crawl clockwise

around a certain racetrack, yet when he crawls counter

clockwise around that same racetrack it takes him only

ninety minutes. Why this discrepancy?

�3. A Question of Intemational Law. m

I an airplane crashes right on the border of the United

States and Canada, in which country would you bury the

survivors?

24. How Do You Explain This? m

Acertain Mr. Smith and his son Arthur were driving in a car.

The car crashed; the father was killed outright and the son

Arthur was critically injured and rushed to a hospital. The

old surgeon took a look at him and said, "I can' t operate on

him; he is my son Arthur! "

How do you explain this?

25. And Now!

And now, what is the name of this book?

PUZZLES AD MONY TRICKS 13

SOLUTIONS

4 .

A remarkably large number of people arrive at the wrong

answer that the man is looking at his own picture. They put

themselves in the place of the man looking at the picture,

and reason as follows: " Since I have no brothers or sisters,

then my father' s son must be me. Therefore I am looking at

U picture of mysel. "

The first statement of this reasoning is absolutely cor-·

reet; i I have neither brothers nor sisters, then my father' s

son is indeed myself. But it doesn' t follow that "myself" is

the answer to the problem. I the second clause of the

problem had been, "this man is my father' s son, " then the

answer to the problem would have been "myself. " But the

problem didn' t say that; it said "this man' s father is my

father' s son. " From which it follows that this man' s father is

myself ( since my father' s son is myself) . Since this man' s

father is myself, then I am this man' s father, hence this man

must be my son. Thus the correct answer to the problem is

that the man is looking at a picture of his son.

f the skeptical reader is still not convinced (and I' m

sure many of you are not!) i t might help i f you look at the

matter a bit more graphically as follows:

( 1) This man' s father is my father' s son.

Substituting the word "myself" for the more cumbersome

phrase "my father' s son" we get

(2) This man' s father is myself .

. Now are you convinced?

5.

The answer to the second problem, "Brothers and sisters

1 4 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

have I none, but this man's son is my father's son," is that

the man is looking at a picture of his father.

6.

The given conditions of the problem are logically contra

dictory. It is logically impossible that there can exist both an

irresistible cannonball and an immovable post. I an irre

sistible cannonball should exist, then by definition it would

knock over any post in its way, hence there couldn't exist an

immovable post. Alteratively, i there existed an immov

able post, then by definition, no cannonball could knock it

over, hence there could not exist an iresistible cannonball.

Thus the existence of an irresistible cannonball is in itself

not logically contradictory, nor is the existence of an im

movable post in itself contradictory; but to assert they both

exist is to assert a contradiction.

The situation is not really very different than had I

asked you: "There are two people, John and Jack. John is

taller than Jack and Jack is taller than John. Now, how do

you explain that?" Your best answer would be, "Either you

are lying, or you are mistaken."

7.

The most common wrong answer is "25.

"

I the problem

had been, "What is the smallest number I must pick in

order to be sure of getting at least two socks of different

colors," then the correct answer would have been 25. But

the problem calls for at least two socks of the same color, so

the correct answer is "thee. " I I pick three socks, then

either they are all of the same color (in which case I cer

tinly have at least two of the same color) or else two are of

one· color and the third is of the other color, so I then have

two of the same color.

8.

The answer is four.

PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS: SOLUTIONS 15

9@

I the first problem, the answer is "yes. " For definiteness,

assume there are exactly 8 million people in New York. I

each inhabitant had a different number of hairs, then there

would be 8 million different positive whole numbers each

less than 8 million. This i s impossible!

For the second problem, the answer is 5 1 8! To see

this, suppose there were more than 51 8 inhabitants-say

520. Then there would have to be 520 distinct numbers all

less than 520 and none of them equal to 5 18. This is im

possible; there are exactly 520 distinct numbers (including

zero) less than 520, hence there are only 51 9 numbers other

than 5 18 which are less than 52 0.

Incidentally, one of the inhabitants of Po dunk must be

bald. Why?

10.

I doubt that either argument can precisely be called " cor

rect" or " incorrect. " I' m afraid that in a problem of this

type, one man' s opinion i s as good as another' s. My per

sonal belief is that if anybody should be regarded as the

cause of C' s death, it was A. Indeed, i I were the defense

attorney of B, I would point out to the court two things:

(1) removing poisoned water from a man is in no sense

killing him; (2) i anything, B' s actions probably served only

to prolong A' s life ( even though this was not his intention) ,

since death by poisoning is likely to be quicker than death

by thirst.

But then A' s attorey could counter, "How can any

one in his right mind convict A of murder by poisoning when

i fact C never drank any of the poison?" So, this problem i s

a real puzzler! It is complicated by the fact that it can be

looked at from a moral angle, a legal angle, and a purely

scientific angle involving the notion of causation. From a

moral angle, obviously both men were guilty of intent to

murder, but the sentence for actual murder is far more

1 6 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

drastic. Regarding the legal angle, I do not know how the

law would decide-perhaps different juries would decide

differently. As for the scientific aspects of the problem, the

whole notion of causaton presents many problems. I think

a whole book could be written on this puzzle.

l 1 e �

The two defendants were Siamese twins.

12.

Te big Indian was the mother of the little Indian.

13.

When the man left his house he started the clock and jotted

down the time it then showed. When he got to his friend's

house he noted the time when he arrived and the time when

he left. Thus he knew how long he was at his friend's house.

When he got back home, he looked at the clock, so he knew

how long he had been away from home. Subtracting from

this the time he had spent at his friend's house, he knew

how long the walk back and forth had been. Adding half of

this to the time he left his friend's house, he then knew what

time it really was now.

14.

The bear must be white; it must be a polar bear. The usual

reason given is that the bear must have been standing at the

North Pole. Well, this indeed is one possibility, but not the

only one. From the North Pole, all directions are south, so i

the bear is standing at the North Pole and the man is 100

yards south of him and walks 100 yards east, then when he

faces north, he wll be facing the North Pole again. But as I

said, this is not the only solution. Indeed there is an infinite

PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS: SOLUTIONS 17

number of solutions. It could be, for example, that the man

is very close to the South Pole on a spot where the Polar

circle passing through that spot has a circumference of

exactly 100 yards, and the bear is standing 100 yards north

of him. Then if the man walks east 100 yards, he would walk

right around that circle and be right back at the point he

started from. So that is a second solution. But again, the

man could be still a little closer to the South Pole at a point

where the polar circle has a circumference of exactly 50

yards, so if he walked east 100 yards, he would walk around

that little circle twice and be back where he started. Or he

could be still a little closer to the South Pole at a point

where the circumference of the polar circle is one- third of

100 yards, and walk east around the circle three times and

be back where he stared. And so forth for any positive

integer n. Thus there is really an infinite number of places

on the earth where the given conditions could be met.

Of course, in any of these solutions, the bear is suffi

ciently close to either the North Pole or the South Pole to

qualify as a polar bear. There is, of course, the remote pos

sibility that some mischievous human being deliberately

transported a brown bear to the North Pole j ust to spite the

author of this problem.

15

The answer is a quarter and a nickel. One of them (namely

the quarter) is not a nickel.

16.

How can a dead man marry anybody?

17.

He was a midget and couldn' t reach the elevator button for

the twenty-fifth foor.

Someone I know (who is obviously not very good at

telling jokes) once told this j oke at a party at which I was

18 LOGICA RECREATIONS

present. He began thus: " On the twenty-fifth foor of an

apartment building lived a midget, . . .

18.

Actually, the yolk is yellow.

19.

Obviously the two trains will be at the same distance from

Boston when they meet.

20.

Roosters don' t lay eggs.

21 .

Twenty.

22 .

There is no discrepancy; an hour and a half is the same as

ninety minutes.

23.

One would hardly wish to bury the survivors!

24.

Te surgeon was Arthur Smith' s mother.

25G

Unfortunately, I cannot right now remember the name of

this book, but don' t worry, I' m sure it will come to me

sooner or later.

PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS: SOLUTIONS 19

�o Knights and Knaves

A. THE ISLND OF KNIGHTS AND KNAVES

Tere is a wide variety of puzzles about an island in which

certain inhabitants called "knights" always tell the truth,

ad others called "knaves" always lie. It is assumed that

every inhabitant of the i sland is either a knight or a knave. I

shall start with a well�known puzzle of this type and then

follow it with a variety of puzzles of my own.

260 ~

According to this old problem, three of the inhabitants-A,

B, and C-were standing together in a garden. A stranger

passed by and asked A, "Are you a knight or a knave?" A

answered, but rather indistinctly, so the stranger could not

make out what he said. The stranger than asked B, "What

did A say?" B replied, "A said that he is a knave. " At this

point the third man, C, said, "Don' t believe B; he is lying! "

The question is, what are B and C?

27. ~

When I came upon the above problem, it immediately

20 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

struck me that C did not really function in any essential

way; he was sort of an appendage, That is to say, the

moment B spoke, one could tell without C' s testimony that

B was lying ( see solution) , The following variant of the

problem eliminates that feature.

Suppose the stranger, instead of asking A what he is,

asked A, "How many knights are among you?" Again A

answers indistinctly. So the stranger asks B, "What did A

say? B replies, "A said that there is one knight among us. "

Then C says, "Don' t believe B; he is lying! "

Now what are B and C?

28.

I this problem, there are only two people, A and B, each of

whom is either a knight or a knave. A makes the following

statement: "At least one of us is a knave. "

What are A and B?

29.

Suppose A says, "Either I am a knave or B is a knight. "

Wat are A and B?

30.

Suppose A says, "Either I am a knave or else two plus two

equals five. " What would you conclude?

31 .

Again we have three people, A, B, C, each of whom is either

a knight or a knave. A and B make the following statements:

A: All of us are knaves.

B: Exactly one of us i s U knight.

What are A, B, C?

KIGHTS AD KAVS 2 1

32.

Suppose instead, A and B say the following:

A: All of us are knaves.

B: Exactly one of us i s a knave.

Can it be determined what B is? Can it be determined what

C is?

33.

Suppose A says, "I am a knave, but B isn' t. "

What are A and B?

34.

We again have three inhabitants, A, B, and C, each of whom

is a knight or a knave. Two people are said to be of the same

tpe if they are both knights or both knaves. A and B make

the following statements:

A: B i s a knave.

B: A and C are of the same type.

Wat is C?

35.

Again three people A, B, and C. A says "B and C are of the

same type. " Someone then asks C, "Are A and B of the

same type?"

What does C answer?

36 ø A Adventure of Mine.

Tis is an unusual puzzle; moreover it is taken from real

life. Once when 1 visited the island of knights and knaves, I

2 2 LOGCAL RECREATIONS

came across two of the inhabitants resting under a tree. I

asked one of them, "Is either of you a knight?" He re

sponded, and I knew the answer to my question.

What is the person to whom I addressed the question

is he a knight or a knave; And what is the other one? I can

assure you, I have given you enough information to solve

this problem.

37 .

Suppose you visit the island of knights and knaves. You

come across two of the inhabitants lazily lying in the sun.

You ask one of them whether the other one is a knight, and

you get a (yes- or-no) answer. Then you ask the second one

whether the first one is a knight. You get a (yes- or- no)

answer.

Are the two answers necessarly the same?

38 0 Edwad or Edwin?

Ts time you come across just one inhabitant lazily lying in

the sun. You remember that his first name is either Edwin

or Edward, but you cannot remember which. So you ask

him his first name and he answers "Edward. "

What is his first name?

B. KNIGHTS, KNAVES, A NORMALS

A equally fascinating type of problem deal s with three

types of people: knights, who always tell the truth; knaves,

who always lie; and normal people, who sometimes lie and

sometimes tell the truth. Here are some puzzles of mine

about knights, knaves, and normals.

39 .

We are given three people, A, B, C, one of whom is a knight,

KIGHTS AND KNAVES 23

one a knave, and one normal (but not necessarily i that

order) . They make the following statements:

A: I am normal.

B: That is tre.

C: I am not normal.

What are A, B, and C?

40

.

**Here is an unusual one: Two people, A and B, each of whom
**

is either a knight, or knave, or a normal, make the following

statement:

A: B is a knight.

B: A is not a knight.

Prove that at least one of them is telling the tth, but is not

a knight.

41 �

Tis time A and B say the following:

A: B is a knight.

B: A is a knave,

Prove that either one of them is telling the truth but is not a

kight, or one of them is lying but is not a knave.

42

.

A Matter of Rank.

On this island of knights, knaves, and norals, knaves are

said to be of the lowest rank, norals of middle rank, and

knights of highest rank.

I am particularly patial to the followng problem:

Given two people A, B, each of whom is a knight, a knave, or

a normal, they make the following statements:

24 LOGICA RECREATIONS

A: I am of lower rank than B.

B: That' s not true!

Can the ranks of either A or B be detenined? Can it be

detennined of either of these statements whether it i s true

or false?

43.

Given three people A, B, C, one of whom is a knight, one a

knave, and one nonal. A, B, make the following statements:

A: B is of higher rank than C.

B: C is of higher rank than A.

Ten C is asked: "Wo has higher rank, A or B?" What does

C answer?

c. THE ISLA OF BAHAVA

Te island of Bahava is a female liberationist island; hence

the women are also called knight, knaves, or norals. An

ancient empress of Bahava once, i a whimsical moment,

passed a curious decree that a knight could marr only a

kave and a knave could marry only a knight. (Hence a

nonal can mary only a nonal. ) Thus, given any married

couple, either they are both nonal, or one of them i s a

kight and the other a knave.

The next three stories all tke place on the island of

Bahava.

44.

We first consider a married couple, Mr. and Mrs. A. They

make the following statements:

Mr. A / My wife is not nonal.

Mrs. A / My husband is not nonal.

KIGHTS A KAVES 25

What are Mr. and Mrs. A?

45.

Suppose, instead, they had said:

Mr. A / My wife is normal.

Mrs. A / My husband is noral.

Would the answer have been different?

468

This problem concerns two married couples on the island of

Bahava, Mr. and Mrs. A, and Mr. and Mrs. B. They are

being interviewed, and three of the four people give the

following testimony:

Mr. A / Mr. B is a knight.

Mrs. A / My husband is right; Mr. B is a knight.

Mrs. B / That' s right. My husband is indeed a knight.

What are each of the four people, and which of the three

statements are true?

SOLUTIONS

26.

I is impossible for either a knight or a knave to say, "I' m a

kave," because a knight wouldn' t make the false state

ment that he is a knave, and a knave wouldn' t make the true

statement that he is a knave. Therefore A never did say that

he was a knave. So B lied when he said that A said that he

was a knave. Hence B is a knave. Since C said that B was

lying and B was indeed lying, then C spoke the truth, hence

26 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

is a knight. Thus B is a knave and C is a knight. (It is impos

sible to know what A is. )

27.

Te answer is the same as that of the preceding problem,

tough the reasoning is a bit different.

The first thing to observe is that B and C must be of

opposite types, since B contradicts C. So of these two, one

is a knight and the other a knave. Now, if A were a knight,

ten there would be two knights present, hence A would

not have lied and said there was only one. On the other

hand, if A were a knave, then it would be true that there was

exactly one knight present; but then A, being a knave,

couldn't have made that true statement. Therefore A could

not have said that there was one knight among them. So B

falsely reported A's statement, and thus B is a knave and C

is a knight.

28.

Suppose A were a knave. Then the statement " At least one

of us i s a knave" would be false ( since knaves make false

statements) ; hence they would both be knights. Thus, if A

were a knave he would also have to be a knight, which is im

possible. Therefore A is not a knave; he is a knight. There

fore his statement must be true, so at least one of them

really is a knave. Since A is a knight, then B must be the

knave. So A is a knight and B is a knave.

29.

This problem is a good introduction to the logic of disjunc

ton. Given any two statements p, q, the statement " either p

or q

"

means that at least one ( and possibly both) of the

statements p,q are true. I the statement " either p or q

"

should be false, then both the statements p, q are false. For

KNIGHTS AD KNAVES: SOLUTIONS 27

example, i I should say, "Either it is raining or it i s

snowing, " then i f my statement is incorrect, i t is both false

that i t is raining and false that i t is snowing.

This is the way " either/ or" is used in logic, and is the

way it will be used throughout this book. In daily life, it is

sometimes used this way (allowing the possibility that both

alternatives hold) and sometimes in the so-called " exclu

sve" sense-that one and only one of the conditions holds.

As an example of the exclusive use, i I say; "I will marry

Betty or I wll marry Jane, " it is understood that the two

possibilities are mutually exclusive-that is, that I will not

marry both girls. On the other hand, i a college catalogue

states that an entering student is required to have had

either a year of mathematics or a year of a foreign language,

the college is certainly not going to exclude you i you had

both! This is the " inclusive" use of " either/or" and is the

one we will constantly employ.

Another important property of the disjunction rela

ton " either this or that" is this. Consider the statement

"

p

or q" (which is short for " either p or q") . Suppose the state

ment happens to be true. Then if p is false, q must be true

( because at least one of them is true, so i p is false, q must

be the true one) . For example, suppose it is tue that it is

either raining or snowing, but it is false that it i s raining.

Ten it must be true that it is snowing.

We apply these two principles as follows. A made a

statement of the disjunctive type: "Either I am a knave or B

is a knight. " Suppose A is a knave. Then the above state

ment must be false. This means that it is neither tue that A

is a knave nor that B is a knight. So i A were a knave, then it

would follow that he is not a knave-which would be a

contradiction. Therefore A must be a knight.

We have thus established that A is a knight. Therefore

his statement is true that at least one of the possibilities

holds: (I) A is a knave; (2) B is a knight. Since possibility (1)

i false ( since A is a knight) then possibility ( 2) must be the

corect one, i. e. , B is a knight. Hence A,B, are both knights.

28 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

30. �

The only valid conclusion is that the author of this problem

is not a knight. The fact i s that neither a knight nor a knave

could possibly make such a statement. If A were a knight,

ten the statement that either A is a knave or that two plus

two equals five would be false, since it is neither the case

that A is a knave nor that two plus two equals five. Thus A, a

knight, would have made a false statement, which is impos

sible. On the other hand, i A were a knave, then the

statement that either A is a knave or that two plus two equals

five would be true, since the first clause that A is a knave is

true. Thus A, a knave, would have made a true statement,

which is equally impossible.

Therefore the conditions of the problem are contra

dictory (just like the problem of the irresistible cannonball

and the immovable post) . Therefore, I, te author of the

problem, was either mistaken or lying. I can assure you I

wasn't mistaken. Hence it follows that I am not a knight.

For the sake of the records, I would like t testf that I

have told the truth at least once in my life, hence I am not a

knave either.

31 .

To begin with, A must be a knave, for i he were a knight,

ten it would be true that all thee are knaves and hence

that A too is a knave. I A were a knight he would have to be

a knave, which is impossible. So A is a knave. Hence his

statement was false, so in fact there i s at least one knight

among them.

Now, suppose B were a knave. Then A and B would

both be knaves, so C would be a knight (since there is at

least one knight among them) . This would mean that there

was exactly one knight among them, hence B' s statement

would be true. We would thus have the impossibility of a

knave making a true statement. Therefore B must be a

knight.

KNIGHTS P KNAVES: SOLUTIONS 29

We now know that A is a knave and that B is a knight.

Since B is a knight, his statement is true, so there is exactly

one knight among them. This knight must be B, hence C

must be a knave. Thus the answer is that A is a knave, B is a

,knight, and C is a knave.

32.

I cannot be determined what B is, but it can be proved that

C is a knight.

To begin with, A must be a knave for the same reasons

as in the preceding problem; hence also there is at least one

kight among them. Now, either B is a knight or a knave.

Suppose he is a knight. Then it is true that exactly one of

them is a knave. This only knave must be A, so C would be a

kight. So if B is a knight, so is C. On the other hand, if B is

U knave, then C must be a knight, since all three can't be

knaves (as we have seen) . So i n either case, C must be a

kight.

33.

To begin with, A can't be a knight or his statement would be

true, i n which case he would have to be a knave. Therefore

A is a knave. Hence also his statement is false. If B were a

knight, then A' s statement would be true. Hence B is also a

knave. So A, B are both knaves.

34.

Suppose A is a knight. Then his statement that B is a knave

must be true, so B is then a knave. Hence B's statement

that A and C are of the same type is false, so A and C are of

different types. Hence C must be a knave (since A is a

knight) . Thus if A is a knight, then C is a knave.

On the other hand, suppose A is a knave. Then his

statement that B is a knave is false, hence B is a knight.

30 LOGICA RECREATIONS

He

nce B's statement is true that A and C are of the same

type. This means that C must be a knave ( since A is)

.

We have shown that regardless of whether A is a

knight or a knave, C must be a knave. Hence C is a knave.

35.

fm

afraid we can solve this problem only by analysis into

cases.

Case One: A i s a knight. Then B, C really are of the same

type. I C is a knight, then B is also a knight, hence is of the

same type as A, so C being truthful must answer " Yes. " If C

is a knave, then B is also a knave ( since he is the same type

as C) , hence is of a different type than A. So C, being a

knave, must lie and say "Yes. "

Case Two: A is a knave. Then B, C are of different types. I

C is a knight, then B is a knave, hence he is of the same type

as A. So C, being a knight, must answer " Yes. " I C is a

knave, then B, being of a different type than C, is a knight,

hence is of a different type than A. Then C, being a knave,

must lie about A and C being of different types, so he will

answer "Yes. "

Thus in both cases, C answers "Yes,"

36.

To solve this problem, you must use the information I gave

you that after the speaker's response, I knew the true

answer to my question

Suppose the speaker-call him A-had answered

"Yes. " Could I have then known whether at least one of

them was a knight? Certainly not. For it could be that A was

a knight and truthfully answered "Yes" (which would be

truthful, since at least one-namely A-was a knight) , or it

could be that both of them were knaves, in which case A

would have falsely answered "Yes" (which would indeed be

KNIGHTS AD KNAVES: SOLUTIONS 3 1

false since neither was a knight). So if A had answered

"Yes" I would have had no way of knowing. But I told you

that I did know after A's answer. Therefore A must have

answered "No."

The reader can now easily see what A and the other

call him B-must be: I A were a knight, he couldn't have

tuthfully answered "No," so A is a knave. Since his answer

"No" is false, then there is at least one knight present.

Hence A is a knave and B is a knight.

37.

Yes, they are. I they are both knights, then they will both

answer "Yes." I they are both knaves, then again they will

both answer "Yes." I one is a knight and the other a knave,

ten the knight will answer "No," and the knave will also

answer "No."

38.

I feel entitled, occasionally, to a little horseplay. The vital

clue I gave you was that the man was lazily lying i the sun.

From this it follows that he was lying in the sun. From this it

follows that he was lyng, hence he is a knave. So his name is

Edwin.

39.

To begin with, A cannot be a kight, because a knight would

never say that he is normal. So A is a knave or is normal.

Suppose A were normal. Then B' s statement would be true,

hence B is a knight or a normal, butB can't be normal (since

A is), so B is a knight. This leaves C a knave. But a kave

cannot say that he is not normal (because a knave really

isn't normal), so we have a contradiction. Therefore A

cannot be normal. Hence A is a knave. Then B' s statement

is false, so B must be normal (he can't be a knave since A is).

Tus A is the knave, B is the normal one, hence C is the

knight.

32 LOGCAL RECREATONS

40 .

Te interesting thing about this problem is that it is im�

possible to know whether it is A who is telling the truth but

isn' t a knight or whether it is B who is telling the truth but

isn' t a knight; all we can prove is that at least one of them

has that property.

Either A is telling the truth or he isn' t. We shall prove:

( 1) I he is, then A is telling the truth but isn' t a knight; (2) I

he isn' t, then B is telling the truth but isn' t a knight.

( 1) Suppose A is telling the truth. Then B really is a

knight. Hence B is telling the truth, so A isn t a knight. Thus

i A is telling the truth then A is a person who is telling the

truth but isn' t a knight.

(2) Suppose A is not telling the truth. Then B isn' t a

kight. But B must be telling the truth, since A can' t be a

kight (because A is not telling the truth) . So in this case B

is telling the truth but isn' t a knight.

41 .

We shall show that i B is telling the truth then he isn' t a

kight, and i he isn' t telling the truth then A is lying but

isn' t a kave.

( 1) Suppose B is telling the truth. Then A is a knave,

hence A is certainly not telling the truth, hence B is not a

kight. So in this case B is telling the truth but isn' t a

knight.

(2) Suppose B is not telling the truth. Then A is not

really a knave. But A is certainly lying about B, because B

can' t be a knight if he isn' t telling the truth. So in this case,

A is lying but isn' t a knave.

42.

To begin with, A can' t be a knight, because it can' t be true

that a knight is of lower rank than anyone else. Now,

suppose A is a knave. Then his statement is false, hence he

is not of lower rank than B. Then B must also be a knave (for

KNIGHTS AD KAVES: SOLUTIONS 33

i he weren' t, then A would be of lower rank than B) . So if A

is a knave, so is B. But this is impossible because B is

contradicting A, and two contradictory claims can' t both be

false. Therefore the assumption that A is a knave leads to a

contradiction. Therefore A is not a knave. Hence A must be

normal.

Now, what about B? Well, i he were a knight, then A

(being normal) actually would be of lower rank than B,

hence A' s statement would be true, hence B' s statement

false, and we would have the impossibility of a knight

making a false statement. Thus B is not a knight. Suppose

B were a knave. Then A' s statement would be false, hence

B' s would be true, and we would have a knave making a true

statement. Therefore B cant be a knave either. Hence B is

normal.

Thus A and B are both normaL So also, A' s statement

is false and B' s statement is true. So the problem admits of

a complete solution.

43.

Step 1 : We first show that from A' s statement i follows that

C cannot be normal. Well, if A is a knight then B really is of

higher rank than C, hence B must be normal and C must be

a knave. So i n this case, C is not normal. Suppose A is a

knave. Then B is not really of higher rank than C, hence B is

of lower rank, so B must be normal and C must be a knight.

So in this case, C again is not normal. The third possible

case is that A is normal, in which case C certainly isn' t

(since only one of A, B, C is normal) . Thus C is not normal.

Step 2: By similar reasoning, it follows from B' s state

ment that A is not normal. Thus neither A nor C is normal.

Terefore B is normal.

Step 3: Since C is not normal, then he is a knight or a

knave. Suppose he is a knight. Then A is a knave ( since B is

normal) hence B is of higher rank than A. So C, being a

knight, would truthfully answer, "B is of higher rank. " On

the other hand, suppose C is a knave. Then A must be a

34 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

knight, so B is not of higher rank than A. Then C, being a

knave, would lie and say, "B is of higher rank than A. " So

regardless of whether C i s a knight or a knave, he answers

that B is of higher rank than A.

44.

M. A cannot be a knave, because then his wife would be a

knight and hence not normal, so Mr. A' s statement would

have been true. Similarly Mrs. A cannot be a knave. There

fore neither i s a knight either (or the spouse would then be û

knave) , so they are both normal ( and both lying) .

45.

For the second problem, the answer is the same. Why?

46.

**It turns out that all four are normal, and all three state
**

ments are lies.

First of all, Mrs. B must be normal, for i she were a

knight her husband would be a knave, hence she wouldn' t

have lied and said he was a knight. I she were a knave, her

husband would be a knight, but then she wouldn' t have told

the truth about this. Therefore Mrs. B is normal. Hence

also Mr. B i s normal. This means that Mr. and Mrs. A were

both lying. Therefore neither one is a knight, and they can' t

both be knaves, so they are both normal.

KNIGHTS AD KAVES: SOLUTIONS 35

� Alice in the Forest

.

�

O o

f

Forget

f

ulness

A. THE LION A THE UNICORN

Wen Alice entered the Forest of Forgetlness, she did not

forget everting; only certain things. She often forgot her

name, and the one thing she was most likely to forget was

the day of te week. Now, the Lion and the Unicorn were

frequent visitors to the forest. These two are stange

' creatures. The Lion lies on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wed

nesdays and tells the truth on the other days of the week.

Te Unicor, on the other hand, lies on Thursdays, Fr

days, and Saturdays, but tells the truth on te other days of

the week,

47

. �

One day Alice met the Lion and the Unicor resting under a

tree. They made the following statements:

Lion / Yesterday was one of my lying days.

Unicor / Yesterday was one of my lying days too.

From these two statements, Alice (who was a ver bright gir)

ws able to deduce te day of the week. What day was it?

36 LOGICA RECREATIONS

480

On another occasion Alice met the Lion alone. He made the

following two statements:

( 1) I lied yesterday.

(2) I wl lie again two days after tomorrow.

What day of the week was it?

490

On what days of the week is it possible for the Lion to make

the following two statements:

(1) I lied yesterday.

(2) I wl lie again tomorow.

50.

On what days of te week is it possible for the Lion to make

the following single statement: "I lied yesterday and I will

lie again tomorrow. " Waring! The answer is not the same

as that of the preceding problem!

B. TWEEDLEDUM AD TWEEDLEDEE

During one month the Lion and the Unicor were absent

from the Forest of Forgetfulness. They were elsewhere,

busily fighting for the crow.

However, Tweedledum and Tweedledee were fre

quent visitors to the forest. Now, one of the two is like the

Lion, lying on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays and

telling the truth on the other days of the week. The other

one is like the Unicor; he lies on Thursdays, Frdays, and

Saturdays but tells the truth the other days of the week.

Alice didn' t know which one was like the Lion and which

ALICE Ü THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS 37

one was like the Unicor, To make matters worse, the

brothers looked so much alike, that Alice could not even tell

them apart (except when they wore their embroidered

collars, which they seldom did) , Thus poor Alice found the

situation most confusing indeed! Now, here are some of

Alice' s adventures with Tweedledum and Tweedledee,

51 0

One day Alice met the brothers together and they made the

following statements:

First One / I' m Tweedledum.

Second One / I' m Tweedledee.

Which one was really Tweedledum and which one was

Tweedledee?

520

On another day of that same week, the two brothers made

the following statements:

First One / I' m Tweedledum.

Second One / I that' s really true, then I' m Tweedle

dee!

Which was which?

53.

On another occasion, Alice met the two brothers, and asked

one of them, "Do you lie on Sundays?" He replied "Yes!'

Then she asked the other one the same question, What did

he answer?

38 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

54.

**On another occasion, the brothers made the following
**

statements:

First One / (1) I lie on Saturdays.

(2) I lie on Sundays.

Second One / I will lie tomorrow.

What day of the week was it?

c55.

One day Alice came across j ust one of the brothers. He

made the following statement: "I am lying today and I am

Tweedledee. "

Who was speaking?

56.

Suppose, instead, he had said: "I am lying today or I am

Tweedledee. " Would it have been possible to determine

who it was?

57.

One day Alice came across both brothers. They made the

following statements:

First One / I I' m Tweedledum then he' s Tweedledee.

Second One / I he' s Tweedledee then I' m

Tweedledum.

Is it possible to determine who is who? Is it possible to

determine the day of the week?

ALICE L THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS 39

58. A Mystery Resolved!

On this great occasion, Alice resolved three grand mys

teries. She came across the two brothers grinning under a

tree. She hoped that on this encounter she would find out

three things: ( 1) the day of the week; (2) which of the two

was Tweedledum; (3) whether Tweedledum was like the

Lion or the Unicorn in his lying habits (a fact she had long

desired to know!)

Well, the two brothers made the following statements:

F

irst One / Today is not Sunday.

Second One / I fact, today is Monday.

First One / Tomorrow is one of Tweedledee' s lying

days.

Second One / The Lion lied yesterday.

Alice clapped her hands in j oy. The problem was now com

pletely solved. What is the solution?

c. WHO OWNS THE RATTLE?

Tweedledum and Tweedledee

Agreed to have a battle;

For Tweedledum said Tweedledee

Had spoiled his nice new rattle.

Just then flew down a monstrous crow,

As black as a tar-barel,

Which frightened both the heroes so

They quite forgot their quarrel.

-Old Nursery Rhyme

"Well, well, " triumphantly exclaimed the White King to

Alice one day, "I' ve found the rattle, and I' ve had it re

stored. Doesn' t it look as good as new?"

"Yes, indeed, " replied Alice, admiringly, "it looks as

good as the day it was made. Even a baby couldn' t tell the

difference. "

40 LOGCAL RECREATIONS

"What do you mean even a baby?" cred the White

King sternly. "That not very logical, you know. Of course

a baby couldn' t tell the difference-one would hardly ex

pect a baby to do that! "

"What you should have said, " continued the King,

somewhat more gently, "is that even a growup couldn' t

tell the difference-not even the world' s greatest rattle

expert. "

"Anyway, " continued the King, "we' ll imagine it said.

The important thing is to restore the rattle to its rightful

owner. Will you please do this for me?"

"Who is the rightful owner?" asked Alice.

"I shouldn' t have to tell you that! " cried the King

impatiently.

"Why not?" inquired Alice.

"Because it says quite explicitly in the rhyme-which

I' m sure you know-that Tweedledum said that Tweedle

dee had spoiled his nice new rattle, so the rattle belongs to

Tweedledum, of course! "

"Not necessarily, " replied Alice, who was in a mood

for a little argument, "I know the rhyme well, and I beleve

it. "

"Then what' s the problem?" cried the King, more

puzzled than ever.

"Very simple, really, " explained Alice. "I grant that

what the rhyme says is true. Therefore Tweedledum did

indeed say that Tweedledee had spoiled his rattle. But

because Tweedledum said it, it does not mean that it i s

necessarily true. Perhaps Tweedledum said i t on one of his

lying days. Indeed, for all I know, it may be the other way

around-maybe it was Tweedledum who spoiled Tweedle

dee' s new rattle. "

"Oh, dear, " replied the King disconsolately, "I never

thought of that. Now all my good intentions are wasted. "

The poor king looked so dej ected, Alive thought he

would cry. "Never mind, " said Alice as cheerully as she

could. "Give me the rattle and I will try to find out who is

the true owner. I' ve had some experience with liars and

ALICE ÜTHE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS 41

truth-tellers around here, and I have gotten a little of the

knack of how to handle them. "

"I hope So! " replied the King mourully.

Now I shal tell you of Alice' s actual adventures with

the rattle.

59.

She took the rattle and went into the Forest of Forget

fulness, hoping to find at least one of the brothers. To her

great delight, she suddenly came across both of them

grinning under a tree. She went to the first one and sternly

said: "I want the truth now! Who really owns the rattle?" He

replied, "Tweedledee owns the rattle. " She thought for a

while, and asked the second one, "Who are you?" He

replied, "Tweedledee. "

Now, Alice di d not remember the day of the week, but

she was sure it was not Sunday.

To whom should Alice give the rattle?

60.

Alice restored the rattle to its rightul owner. Several days

later, the other brother broke the rattle again. This time, no

black crow came to frighten the brothers, so they began

slamming and banging away at each other. Alice picked up

the broken rattle and ran out of the forest as fast as she

could.

Some time later, she again came across the White

King. She thoroughly explained the situation to him.

"Very interesting, " replied the King. "The most re

markable part is that although you knew to whom to give it,

we still do not know i it is Tweedledee or Tweedledum

who owns the rattle. "

"Very true, " replied Alice, "but what do I do now?"

"No problem, " replied the King, I can easily have the

rattle fixed again. "

True to his word, te White King had the rattle

42 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

perectly restored and gave it to Alice some days later.

Aice went trepidly into the forest, fearing that the battle

might still be on. As a matter offact, the brothers had called

a temporary truce, and Alice came across just one of them

resting wearily under a tree. Alice went over to him and

asked, "Who really owns this rattle?" He quizzically re

plied, "The true owner of this rattle is lying today. "

What are the chances that the speaker owns the rattle?

61 .

Several days later Alice again came upon j ust one of the

brothers lying under a tree. She asked the same question,

and the reply was, "The owner of this rattle is telling the

truth today. "

Alice pondered over this; she wondered just what were

the chances that the speaker owned the rattle.

"I know what you are thinking, " said Humpty Dumpty,

who happened to be standing nearby, "and the chances are

exactly thirteen out of fourteen! "

How did Humpty Dumpty ever arrive at those numbers?

62e

This time Alice came across both brothers together. Alice

asked the first one, "Do you own this rattle?" He replied

"Yes. " Then Alice asked the second one, "Do you own this

rattle?" The second one answered, and Alice gave one of

them the rattle.

Did Alice give the rattle to the first or the second one?

D. FROM THE MOUTH OF THE

JABBERWOCKY

Of all the adventures Alice had with the Tweedle brothers

in the Forest of Forgetfulness, the one I am about to relate

was the most eerie, and the one Alice remembered most

vividly.

AICE L THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS 43

It started this way: One day Humpty Dumpty met

Alice and said: " Child, I wish to tell you a great secret. Most

people don' t know it, but Tweedledee and Tweedledum

actually have a third brother-his name is Tweedledoo. He

lives in a far-off land but occasionally comes around to

these parts. He looks as much like Tweedledee and Twee

dledum as Tweedledee and Tweedledum look like each

other. "

This information disturbed Alice dreadfully! For one

thing, the possibility that there really was a third one would

mean that all her past inferences were invalidated, and that

she really may not have figured out the day of the week

when she thought she had. Of even greater practical im

portance, she may not have restored the rattle to its rightful

owner after all.

Alice pondered deeply over these troublesome thoughts

Finally, she asked Humpty Dumpty a sensible question.

- "On what days does Tweedledoo lie?"

"Tweedledoo always lies," replied Humpty Dumpty.

Alice walked away in troubled silence. "Perhaps the

whole thing is only a fabrication of Humpty Dumpty," Alice

thought to herself. "It cerainly sounds a most unlikely tale

to me. " Still, Alice was haunted by the thought that it might

be true.

There are four different accounts of j ust what hap

pened next, and I shall tell you all of them. I ask the reader

to assume two things: ( 1) i there really is an individual

other than Tweedledee or Tweedledum who looks indistin

guishable from them, then his name really is Tweedledoo;

(2) i such an individual exists, then he really does lie all the

time. I might remark that the second assumption is not

necessary for the solution of the next mystery, but it is for

the two which follow after that.

63. The First Version.

Alice came across j ust one brother alone in the forest. At

least, he looked like he was Tweedledee or Tweedledum.

44 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

Alice told him Humpty Dumpty' s story, and then asked

him, "Who are you really?" He gave the enigmatic reply, " I

H either Tweedledee or Tweedledum, and today i s one of

my lying days. "

The question i s, does Tweedledoo really exist, or is he

just a fabrication of Humpty Dumpty?

64 ø The Second Version.

According to this version, Alice came across (what seemed

to be) both brothers. She asked the frst one: "Who really

are you?" She got the following replies:

First One / "I' m Tweedledoo!'

Second One / "Yes, he is! "

Wat do you make of this version?

65 ø The Third Version.

According to this version, Alice came across j ust one of

them. He made the following statement: "Today is one of

my lying days. " What do you make of this version?

66 ø The Fourth Version.

According to this version, Alice met (what seemed to be)

both brothers on a weekday. She asked, "Does Tweedledoo

really exist?" She got the following replies:

First One / Tweedledoo exists.

Second One / I exist.

What do you make of this version?

Epilogue.

Now, what is the real truth of the matter; does Tweedledoo

really exist or not? Well, I have given you four conficting

AICE L THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS 45

versions of what really happened. How come four versions?

Well, to tell you the truth, I didn' t invent these stories

myself; I heard them all from the mouth of the Jabber

wocky. Now, the conversation between Alice and Humpty

Dumpty really happened: Alce told me this herself, and

.

Alice is always truthfuL But the four versions of what hap

pened afer that were all told to me by the Jabberwocky.

Now, I know that the Jabberwocky lies on the same days as

the Lion (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday) and he told me

these stories on four consecutive weekdays. (1 know they

were weekdays, because 1 am lazy and sleep all day Sat

urdays and Sundays. ) They were told to me in the same

order as I recounted them.

From this information, the reader should have no dif

fculty in ascertaining whether Tweedledoo really exists or

whether Humpty Dumpty was lying. Does Alice know

whether Tweedledoo exists?

SOLUTIONS

47.

The only days the Lion can say "I lied yesterday" are

Mondays and Thursdays. The only days the Unicorn can

say "I lied yesterday" are Thursdays and Sundays. There

fore the only day they can both say that is on Thursday.

48. m

The lion' s first statement implies that it is Monday or

Thursday. The second statement implies that it is not

Thursday. Hence it is Monday.

49. m

On no day of the week is this possible! Only on Mondays

and Thursdays could he make the first statement; only on

46 LOGICA RECREATIONS

Wednesdays and Sundays could he make the second. So

there i s no day he could say both.

50 .

This is a very different situation! It well illustrates the

difference between making two statements separately and

making one statement which is the conjunction of the

two. Indeed, given any two statements X, Y, if the single

statement "X and Y' is true, then it of course follows

that X, Y are true separately; but if the conjunction "X

and Y' is false, it only follows that at least one of them is

false.

N ow, the only day of the week i t could be true that the

Lion lied yesterday and wiIl lie again tomorrow is Tuesday

(this is the one and only day which occurs between two of

the Lion' s lying days) . So the day the Lion said that

couldn' t be Tuesday, for on Tuesdays that statement is

true, but the Lion doesn' t make true statements on Tues

days. Therefore it is not Tuesday, hence the Lion' s state

ment is false, so the Lion is lying. Therefore the day must be

either Monday or Wednesday.

51 .

I the first statement is true, then the first one really is

Tweedledum, hence the second one is Tweedledee and the

second statement is also true. If the first statement is false,

then the first one is actually Tweedledee and the second

one is Tweedledum, and hence the second statement is also

false. Therefore either both statements are true or both

statements are false. They can' t both be false, since the

brothers never lie on the same day. Therefore both state

ments must be true. So the first one is Tweedledum and the

second one is Tweedledee. Also, the day of the encounter

must be Sunday.

ALICE I THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS: SOLUTIONS 47

52.

This is a horse of a ver different color! The second one' s

statement is certainly true. Now, we are given that the day

of the week is different from that of the last problem, so it is

a weekday. Therefore it cannot be that both sttements are

true, so te first one must be false. Therefore the first one is

Tweedledee and the second is Tweedledum.

53.

The frst answer was clearly a lie, hence the event must

have taken place on a weekday. Therefore the other one

must have answered truthfully and said "No. "

54.

Sttement (2) of te first one is clearly false, he

n

ce state

ment ( 1) is false too ( since it is uttered on the same day).

Therefore the first one does not lie on Saturdays, so the

second one lies on Saturdays. The second one is telling the

truth on this day ( since the first one is lying), so it is now

Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday. The only one of these

days in which it is true that he wl lie tomorrow is Wednes

day. So te day is Wednesday.

55.

His statement is certainly false ( for if it were te, then he

would be lying today, which is a contradicton). Therefore

at least one of the two clauses "I am lying today, " "I am

Tweedledee" must be false. The first clause ("I û lying

today") is true, therefore the second clause must be false.

So

h

e is Tweedledum.

56.

Yes it would. H he were lying today, then the first clause of

the disj unction would be true, hence the whole statement

48 LOGCAL RECREATONS

would be true, which is a contradiction. Therefore he is

telling the truth today. So his statement is true: either he is

lying today or he is Tweedledee. Since he is not lying today,

ten he is Tweedledee.

57 .

Both statements are obviously true, so it is a Sunday. It is

not possible to determine who is who.

58.

To begin with, it is impossible on a Sunday for either

brother to lie and say that it is not Sunday. Therefore today

cannot be Sunday. So the first one is telling the trth, and

( since it is not Sunday), the second one is therefore lying

today. The second one says today is Monday, but he is

lying, so it is not Monday either.

Now, the second one has also told the lie that the Lion

led yesterday, hence yesterday was really one of the Lion's

tthful days. This means that yesterday was Thursday,

Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, so today is Friday, Saturday,

Sunday, or Monday. We have already ruled out Sunday and

Monday, so today must be Friday or Saturday.

Next we observe that tomorrow is one of Tweedle�

dee' s lying days (since the first one, who is speaking the

truth, said so). Therefore today cannot be Saturday. Hence

today is Frday.

From this it further follows that Tweedledee lies on

Saturdays, hence he is like the Unicorn. Also, the first one

is telling the truth today, which is a Friday, hence he is

Tweedledum. This proves everything.

59.

Suppose the frst one told the truth. Then the rattle belongs

to Tweedledee. The second speaker must be lying (since it

is not Sunday), hence his name is not really Tweedledee; it

ALICE Ü TH FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS: SOLUTONS 49

is Tweedledum. Hence the first speaker is Tweedledee and

should get the rattle.

Suppose the first one lied. Then the rattle belongs to

Tweedledum. Then also the second one told the truth so is

really Tweedledee. Then again the first one owns the rattle.

So in either case, the rattle belongs to the first speaker.

600 ~

The chances are zero! Suppose his statement is true. Then

the owner of the rattle is lying today, hence cannot be the

speaker. Suppose on the other hand that his statement is

false. Then the owner of the rattle is telling the truth today,

hence again cannot be the speaker.

61 e ~

Humpty Dumpty was right! Suppose the speaker is lying.

Then the owner of the rattle is not telling the truth today; he

is lying today, hence must be the speaker. But suppose the

speaker is telling the truth. Then the owner of the rattle is

indeed telling the truth today. If it is a weekday, then he

must be the owner, but if it is a Sunday, then both brothers

are telling the truth today, so either could be the owner.

In summary, if it is a weekday, then the speaker is def

nately the owner. If it is Sunday, then the chances are even

that he is the owner. Therefore the chances are 6% out of

7-or 1 3 out of 1 4-that he is the owner.

62.

The clue here is that Alice did know who to give it to. Had

the second one answered "Yes, " then one of them would

have been telling the truth and the other lying, hence Alice

would have no way of knowing who owned the rattle. But I

told you she did know, hence the second one didn' t answer

"Yes. " Therefore they were both lying or both telling the

truth. This means they were both telling the truth, and it

50 LOGCAL RECREATIONS

must have been Sunday. So Alice gave it to the first one.

63.

Yes, Tweedledoo must exist; Alice was j ust talking to him.

The speaker claimed that the following statements are

both true:

(1) He is either Tweedledee or Tweedledum

(2) He is lying today.

I his claim were true, then ( 1) and (2 ) would both be true,

hence (2 ) would be true, which would be a contradiction.

Therefore his claim is false, so ( 1) and (2 ) cannot both be

true. Now, (2) is true (since his claim on this day is false), so

i t must be ( 1) that is not true. Therefore he is neither

Tweedledee nor Tweedledum, so he must be Tweedledoo.

64.

Te first one can't really be Tweedledoo (since Tweedledoo

always lies); so he is Tweedledee or Tweedledum, but he is

lying. Then the second one is also lying. I the second one

were Tweedledee or Tweedledum, then Tweedledee and

Tweedledum would be lying on the same day, which is im

possible. Therefore the second one must be Tweedledoo.

65.

Tis version is just simply false!

66.

Whoever the second one is, his statement is certainly true.

(I think Descartes pointed out that anyone who says he

exists is making a true statement; certainly I have never met

anyone who didn't exist. ) Since the second statement is true

and it is not Sunday, then the first statement must be false.

ALICE L THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS: SOLUTONS 51

So if this version of the story is correct, Tweedledoo doesn' t

exist.

Solution to the Epilogue.

The third version of the story i s definitely false. Also none

of the stories was told on a Saturday or Sunday. The only

way these four stories can be fitted into four consecutive

days satisfying these conditions is that the third version

was told on a Wednesday. So the last version was told on a

Thursday, hence must be the true one. So Tweedledoo

doesn't really exist! (I' m quite sure, incidentally, that had

Tweedledoo really exi sted, Lewis Carroll would have know

about it. )

As for Alice, since the fourth version is the only one

which really took place, then Alice should have no diffculty

in realizing that all these "Tweedledoo fears" were ground

less.

52 LOGICAL RECREATIONS

The .ystery of

Portia's Caskets

A. THE FIRST TAE

67a.

I Shakespeare' s Merchant of Venice Portia had three

caskets-gold, silver, and lead-inside one of which was

Portia' s portrait. The suitor was to choose one of the

caskets, and i he was lucky enough (or wise enough) to

choose the one with the portrait, then he could claim Portia

as his bride. On the lid of each casket was an inscription to

help the suitor choose wisely.

Now, suppose Portia wished to choose her husband

not on the basis of virtue, but simply on the basis of in

telligence. She had the following inscriptions put on the

caskets.

Gold Silver Lead

THE PORTRAIT THE PORTRAIT TE PORTRAIT

IS L THIS IS NOT L IS NOT L THE

CASKET THIS CASKET GOLD CASKET

Portia explained to the suitor that of the three statements,

at most one was true.

Which casket should the suitor choose?

TE MYSTRY OF PORTIA'S CASKETS 55

67bo

Portia' s suitor chose correctly, so they married and lived

quite happily-at least for a while. Then, one day, Portia

had the following thoughts: "Though my husband showed

some intelligence in choosing the right casket, the problem

wasn't really that difficult. Surely, I could have made the

problem harder and gotten a really clever husband. " So she

forthwith divorced her husband and decided to get a clev

erer one.

This time she had the following inscriptions put on the

caskets:

Gold

.

THE PORTRAIT

IS NOT L THE

SILVER CASKET

Silver

THE PORTRAIT

IS NOT L

THIS CASKET

Lead

THE PORTRAIT

IS I THIS

CASKET

Portia explained to the suitor that at least one of the three

statements was true and that at least one of them was false.

Which casket contains the portait?

Epilogue

As fate would have it, the first suitor tured out to be

Portia' s ex-husband. He was really quite hrght enough to

figure out this problem too. So they were remarried. The

husband took Portia home, turned her over his knee, gave

her a good sound spanking, and Portia never had any

foolish ideas again.

B. THE SECOND TALE

Portia and her husband did, as a matter of fact, live happily

ever after. They had a daughter Portia II-henceforth to be

called "Portia. " When the young Portia grew to young

womanhood, she was both clever and beautiful, j ust like her

56 PORTIA'S CASKETS

mommy. She also decided to select her husband by the

casket method. The suitor had to pass two tests in order to

win her.

68a" The First Test,

I this test each lid contained two statements, and Portia

explained that no lid contained more than one false

statement.

(2) THE ARTIST OF

THE PORTRAIT IS

FROM VENICE

(2) THE ARTIST OF

THE PORTRAT IS

REALLY FROM

FLORENCE

Which casket contains the portrait?

Lead

( 1) THE PORTRAIT

IS NOT L HERE

(2) THE PORTRAIT

IS REALLY L

. THE SILVER

CASKET

68b. The Second Test.

I the suitor passed the first test, he was taken into another

room in which there were three more caskets. Again each

casket had two sentences inscribed on the lid. Portia ex

plained that on one of the lids, both statements were true; on

another, both statements were false; and on the third, one

statement was true and one was false.

(1) THE PORTRAIT

IS NOT I THIS

CASKET

( 1) THE PORTRAIT

IS NOT L THE

GOLD CASKET

Lead

�

THE MYSTRY OF PORTIA' S CASKETS 57

Which casket contains the portrait?

C. INTRODUCING BELLINI AND CELLINI

The suitor of the last tale passed both tests and happily

claimed Portia II as his bride. They lived happily ever after

and had a lovely daughter Portia III-henceforth to be

called "Portia. " When she grew up to young womanhood,

she was born smart and beautiful-just like her mommy

and grandmommy. She also decided to choose her husband

by the casket method. The suitor had to pass three tests in

order to w her! The tests were quite ingenious. She went

back to her grandmother' s idea of having only one state

ment inscribed on each casket rather than two. But she

introduced the following new wrinkle: She explained to the

suitor that each casket was fashioned by one of two famous

Florentine craftsmen-Cellini or Bellini. Whenever Cellini

fashioned a casket, he always put a false inscription on it,

whereas Bellini put only true inscriptions on his caskets.

69a. The First Test.

I this unusual test the suitor (if he guessed blindly) would

have a two out of three rather than a one out of three

chance. Instead of using a portrait, Portia used a dagger

which was placed in one of the three caskets; the other two

caskets were empty. If the suitor could avoid the casket with

the dagger, then he could take the next test. The inscrip

tions on the caskets were as follows:

Gold Silver Lead

--

AT MOST ONE OF THESE

THREE CASKETS WAS

FASHIONED BY BELLII

Which casket should the suitor choose?

58 PORTIA' S CASKETS

69b 0 The Second Test.

I this test, the suitor' s chances (i he guessed blindly) were

one out of two. Portia used only two caskets, gold and

silver, and one of them contained her portrait (no dagger

was used in this test) . Again each casket was fashioned

either by Cellini or Bellini. The caskets read:

Gold

EXACTLY ONE OF THESE

TWO CASKETS WAS

FASHIONED BY BELLII

Which casket should the suitor choose in order to find the

portrait?

69c 0 The Third Test

I the suitor passed these two tests, he was led into another

room containing a gold, silver, and lead casket. Again, each

casket was fashioned by either Cellini or Bellini. N ow in this

test, the suitor' s chances were one out of three (if he

guessed blindly) ; Portia used a portrait of herself, and the

portrait was in one of the caskets. To pass the test, the

suitor had to ( 1) select the casket containing the portrait;

(2) tell the maker of each casket.

The three inscriptions read:

Gold bilver Lead

**AT LEAST TWO OF
**

THESE CASKTS WERE

¯ FASHIONED BY CELLII

What is the solution?

THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA' S CASKETS 59

D. THE MYSTERY: WHAT WENT WRONG?

70.

The fourth and final tle is the most bafing of all, and it

illustrates a logical principle of basic importance.

The suitor of the last story passed all three tests and

happily claimed Portia III as his bride. They had many

children, great- grandchildren, etc.

Several generations later a descendant was born in

America who looked so much like the ancestral portraits

that she was named Portia Nth-henceforth to be referred

to as "Portia." When this Portia grew to young womanhood

she was both clever and beautiful-just like all the other

Portias. In addition, she was highly vivacious and a bit on

the mischievous side. She also decided to select her hus

band by the casket method (which was somewhat of an

anomaly in modern New York, but let that pass).

The test she used appeared simple enough; she had

only two caskets, silver and gold, in one of which was

Porta' s portrait. The lids bore te following inscrptions:

Gold Silver

.

EXACTLY ONE OF

THESE TWO

STATEMENTS IS TRUE

Which casket would you choose? Well, the suitor reasoned

as follows. I the statement on the silver casket is true, then

it is the case that exactly one of the two statements is true.

This means that the statement on the gold casket must be

false. On the other hand, suppose the statement on the

silver casket is false. Then it is not the case that exactly one

of the statements is tre; this means that the statements are

either both true or both false. They can' t both be true

(under the assumption that the second is false), hence they

are both false. Therefore again, the statement on the gold

60 PORTIA'S CASKTS

casket is false. So regardless of whether the statement on

the silver casket is true or false, the statement on the gold

casket must be false. Therefore the portrait must be in the

gold casket.

So the suitor triumphantly exclaimed, "The portrait

must be in the gold casket" and opened the lid. To his utter

horror the gold casket was empty! The suitor was stunned

and claimed that Portia had deceived him. "I don' t stoop to

deceptions, " laughed Portia, and with a haughty, trium

phant, and disdainful air opened the silver casket. Sure

enough, the portrait was there.

Now, what on earth went wong with the suitor' s

reasoning?

"Well, well! " said Portia, evidently enjoying the situation

enormously, " so your reason didn' t do you much good,

did it? However, you seem like a very attractive young man,

so I think I' ll give you another chance. I really shouldn' t do

this, but I will! In fact, I' ll forget the last test and give you a

simpler one in which your chances of winning me will be two

out of three rather than one out of two. It resembles one of

the tests given by my ancestor Portia III. Now surely you

should be able to pass this one! "

So saying, she l ed the suitor into another room in

which there were three caskets-gold, silver, and lead.

Portia explained that one of them contained a dagger and

the other two were empty. To win her, the suitor merely

need choose one of the empty ones. The inscriptions on the

caskets read as follows:

Gold

THE DAGGER

IS I THIS

CASKET

bilver

THIS

CASKET

IS EMPTY

Lead

AT MOST ONE

OF THESE THREE

STATEMENTS IS TRUE

(Compare this problem with the first test of Portia III!

Doesn' t it seem to be exactly the same problem?)

THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA' S CASKETS 61

Well, the suitor reasoned ver carefully this time as

follows: Suppose statement (3) is true. Then both other

state;ents must be false-in particular (2) is false, so the

dagger is then in the silver casket. On the other hand, if (3)

is false, then there must be at least two true statements

present, hence ( 1) must be one of them, so in this case the

dagger is in the gold casket. In either case the lead casket is

empty.

So the suitor chose the lead casket, opened the lid,

and to his horror, there was the dagger! Laughingly, Portia

opened the other two caskets and they were empty!

I'm sure the reader will be happy to hear that Portia

married her suitor anyhow. (She had decided this long

before the tests, and merely used the tests to tease him a

little) . But this still leaves unanswered the question: What

was wrong with the suitor's reasoning?

SOLUTIONS

67a�

The statements on the gold and lead caskets say the

opposite, hence one of them must be true. Since at most

one of the three statements is true, then the statement on

the silver casket is false, so the portrait is actually in the

silver casket.

This problem could be alternatively solved by the fol

lowing method: If the portrait were in the gold casket, we

would have two true statements (namely on the gold and

lead caskets) , which is contrary to what is given. If the

portrait were in the lead casket, we would again have two

true statements (this time on the lead and silver caskets) .

Therefore the portrait must be in the silver casket.

Both methods are correct, and this illustrates the fact

that in many problems there can be several correct ways of

arrving at the same conclusion.

62 PORTIA'S CASKTS

67b.

I the portrait were in the lead casket, then all three state

ments would be true, which is contrary to what is given. I

the portrait were in the silver casket, then all three state

ments would be false, which is again contrary to what is

given. Therefore the portrait must be in the gold casket

(and we have the fist two statements true and the third one

false, which is consistent with what is given) .

68a.

We can immediately rule out the lead casket, for i the

portrait were there, then both statements on the lead

casket would be false. So the portrait i s in the gold or the

silver casket. Now, the first statements on the gold and

silver caskets agree, so they are both true or both false. I

they are both false, the second statements are both true

but they cannot be both true since they are contradictory.

Therefore the first statements are both true, so the portrait

cannot be in the gold casket. This proves that the portrait is

i the silver casket.

68b.

I the portrait is in the gold casket, then the gold and silver

casket lids each contain two false statements. I it is in the

silver casket, then the silver and lead caskets each contain

one true and one false statement. Therefore the portrait is

in the lead casket (and the silver casket lid contains both

tre statements; the lead, both false; and the gold, one true

and one false) .

69a.

Suppose the lead casket had been fashioned by Bellini.

Then the statement would be true, hence the other caskets

THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA' S CASKETS: SOLUTIONS 63

must have been fashioned by Cellini. This means that the

other statements are both false-in particular the state

ment on the silver casket is false, so the dagger is in the

silver casket. Thus, i the lead casket is the work of Bellini,

then the silver casket contains the dagger.

Now, suppose the lead casket had been fashioned by

Cellini. Then the statement is false, so at least two caskets

were fashioned by Bellini. This means that both the gold

and silver caskets are Bellini caskets (since the lead one is

assumed Cellini) . Then the statements on both the gold and

silver are true. In particular, the one on the gold is true. So

i this case, the dagger lies in the gold casket.

In neither case can the dagger be in the lead casket, so

the . suitor should choose the lead casket.

69b .

I the silver casket is a Bellini, then the statement is true, in

which case the gold casket is a Cellini. Suppose the silver

casket is a Cellini. Then it is not the case that exactly one of

the caskets is a Bellini. This means that the gold is a Cellini

(for if it were a Bellini, then it would be the case that exactly

one is a Bellini!) Thus, whether the silver is Bellini or

Cellini, the gold is surely a Cellini. Therefore the statement

on the gold casket is false, so the portrait is in the gold

casket.

69ce

We frst show that the lead casket must be a Bellini. Sup

pose it were a Cellini. Then the statement is false, which

means that there must be at least two Bellinis, which must

be silver and gold. This is impossible, since the portrait

can' t be in both the silver and gold caskets. Thus the lead

casket is really a Bellini. Hence the statement on it i s true,

so there are at least two Cellinis. This means that the gold

and silver are both Cellinis. Hence the statements on both

of them are false, so the portrait is neither in the gold nor

64 PORTIA'S CASKTS

the silver caskets. Therefore the portrait is in the lead

casket.

Also, we have proved tha the lead casket is a Bellini

and the other two are Cellinis, which answers the second

question.

70.

The suitor should have realized that without any informa

tion given about the truth or falsity of any of the sentences,

nor any information given about the relation of their truth

values, the sentences could say anything, and the obj ect

(portrait or dagger, as the case may be) could be anywhere.

Good heavens, I can take any number of caskets that I

please and put an obj ect in one of them and then write any

inscriptions at all on the lids; these sentences won' t convey

any information whatsoever. So Portia was not really lying;

all she said was that the obj ect in question was in one of the

boxes, and in each case it really was.

The situation would have been very different wth any

of the previous Portia stories, i the object had not been

where the suitor figured it out to be; in this case one of the

old Portias would have had to have made a false statement

somewhere along the line (as we wll soon see) .

Another way to look at the matter i s that the suitor' s

error was to assume that each of the statements was either

true or false. Let us look more carefully at the first test of

Portia Nth, using two caskets. The statement on the gold

casket, "The portrait is not in here, " is certainly either tue

or false, since either the portrait is in the gold casket or it

isn't. It happened to be true, as a matter of fact, since Portia

had actually placed the portrait in the silver casket. Now,

given that Portia did put th

e

portait in the silver casket,

was the statement on the silver casket true or false? It

couldn' t be either one without getting into a paradox!

Suppose it were true. Then exactly one of the statements is

true, but since the first statement (on the gold casket) is

true, then this statement is false. So i it is true, it is false.

THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA' S CASKETS: SOLUTIONS 65

On the other hand, suppose this statement on the silver

casket is false. Then the first is true, the second is false,

which means that exactly one of the statements is true,

which is what this statement asserts, hence it would have to

be true! Thus either assumption, that the statement is true

.

or is false, leads to a contradiction.

It will be instructive to compare this test with the

second test given by Portia II

,

which also used just two

caskets. The gold casket said the same thing as the gold of

the problem, "The portrait is not in here, " but the silver

casket, instead of saying "Exactly one of these two state

ments is true, " said "Exactly one of these two caskets was

fashioned by Bellini. " Now, the reader may wonder what

significant difference there is between these two state

ments, given that Bellini inscribed only true statements and

Cellini only false ones. Well, the difference, though subtle,

is basic. The statement, "Exactly one of these two caskets

was fashioned by Bellini" i s a statement which must be true

or false; it is a historic statement about the physical world

either it is or it is not the case that Bellini made exactly one

of the two caskets. Suppose, in the Portia IIproblem, that

the portrait had been found to be in the silver casket

instead of the cold casket. What would you conclude: that

the statement on the silver casket was neither true nor

false? That would be the wrong conclusion! The statement,

as I have pointed out, really is either true or false. The

correct conclusion to draw is that i the portrait had been in

the silver casket, then Portia In would have been lying in

saying what she did about Bellini and Cellini. By contrast,

the modern Portia could place the portrait in the silver

casket without having lied, since she said nothing about the

truth-values of the statements.

The whole question of the truth-values of statements

which refer to their own truth-values is a subtle and basi c

aspect of moder logic and will be dealt with again i n later

chapters.

66 PORTIA'S CASKTS

From the Files

of Inspector Crai

g

A. FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG

Inspector Leslie Craig of Scotland Yard has kindly con

sented to release some of his case histories for the benefit

of those interested in the application of logic to the solution

of crimes.

71 .

We shall start with a simple case. An enormous amount of

loot had been stolen from a store. The criminal {or crimi

nals} took the heist away in a car. Three well-known crimi

nals A,B, C were brought to Scotland Yard for questioning.

The following facts were ascertained:

(1) No one other than A, B, C, was involved in the robbery.

(2) C never pulls a job without using A (and possibly

others) as an accomplice.

( 3) B does not know how to drive.

Is A innocent or guilty?

72.

Another simple case, again of robbery: A, B, C were brought

in for questioning and the following facts were ascertained:

FROM THE FILES OF ISPECTOR CRAIG 67

(1) No one other than A, B, e was involved.

(2) A never works without at least one accomplice.

(3) C is innocent.

Is B innocent or guilty?

73. The Case of the Identical Twins.

In this more interesting case, the robbery occurred in

London. Three well-known criminals A, B, C were rounded

up for questioning. Now, A and C happened to be identical

twins and few people could tell them apart. All three

suspects had elaborate records, and a good deal was know

about their personalities and habits. In particular, the twins

were quite timid, and neither one ever dared to pull a j ob

without an accomplice. B, on the other hand, was quite bold

and despised ever using an accomplice. Also several wit

nesses testified that at the time of the robbery, one of the

two twins was seen drinking at a bar i Dover, but it was not

know which twin.

Again, assuming that no one other than A,B, C was in

volved in the robbery, which ones are innocent and which

ones guilty?

74.

"What do you make of these three facts?" asked Inspector

Craig to Sergeant McPherson.

(1) If A is guilty and B is innocent, then C is guilty.

(2) C never works alone.

(3) A never works with C.

(4) No one other than A,B or C was involved, and at least

one of them is guilty.

The Sergeant scratched his head and said, "Not much, I'm

afraid, Sir. Can you infer from these facts which ones are

innocent and which ones are guilty?"

68 OTHER MYSTERIES

"No, " responded Craig, "but there is enough material

here to defnitely indict one of them. "

Which one is necessarily guilty?

75. The Case of McGregor's Shop.

Mr. McGregor, a London shopkeeper, phoned Scotland

Yard that his shop had been robbed. Three suspects A, B, C

were rounded up for questioning. The following facts were

established:

( 1) Each of the men A, B, C had been in the shop on the day

of the robbery, and no one else had been in the shop

that day.

(2) If A was guilty, then he had exactly one accomplice.

(3) If B is innocent, so is C.

(4) If exactly two are guilty, then A is one of them.

(5) I C is innocent, so is B.

Whom did Inspector Craig indict?

76. Case of the Four.

This time four suspects A, B, C, D were rounded up for ques

tioning concerning a robbery. It was known for sure that at

least one of them was guilty and that no one outside these

four was involved. The following facts tured up:

(1) A was definitely innocent.

(2) If B was guilty, then he had exactly one accomplice.

(3) If C was guilty, then he had exactly two accomplices.

Inspector Craig was especially interested in knowing

whether D was innocent or guilty, since D was a particu

larly dangerous criminal. Fortunately, the above facts are

sufficient to determine this. Is D guilty or not?

FROM THE FILES OF ISPECTOR CRAIG 69

B. CA YOU PUZZLE THESE OUT?

Insp�aig . frequently used to go to court to observe

cases-even those in which he was not himself involved. He

.

did this j ust as an exe.cise in logic-to see which cases he

could figure out. Here are some of the cases he observed.

77.The Case ofthe StupidDefense Attorney.

A man was being tried for participation in a robbery. The

prosecutor and the defense attorney made the following

statements:

Posecutor / If the defendant is guilty, then he had an

accomplice.

Defense Attorey / That' s not true!

Why was this the worst thing the defense attorney could

have said?

78.

This and the next case involve the trial of three men, A, B, C,

for participation i n a robbery.

In this case, the following two facts were established:

(1) If A is innocent or B is guilty, then C is guilty.

(2) I A is innocent, then C is innocent.

Ca the guilt of any particular one of the tree be established?

79.

In this case, the followng facts were established:

(1) At least one of the three is guilty.

(2) If A is guilty and B is innocent, then C is guilty.

70 OTHER MSTERIS

This evidence is insufficient to convict any of them, but it

does point to two of them such that one. of these two has to

be guilty. Which two are they?

80 .

In this more interesting case, four defendants A,B, C,D

were involved and the following four facts were established:

(1) If both A and B are guilty, then C was an accomplice.

(2) I A is guilty, then at least one of B, C was an accomplice.

(3) If C is guilty, then D was an accomplice.

(4) If A is innocent then D is guilty.

Which ones are definitely guilty and which ones are doubtul?

81 .

This case again involves four defendants, A, B, C, D. The

following facts were established:

(1) If A is guilty, then B was an accomplice.

( 2) If B is guilty then either C was an accomplice or A is

innocent.

(3) If D is innocent then A is guilty and C is innocent.

(4) If D is guilty, so is A.

Which ones are innocent and which ones are guilty?

C. SIX EXOTIC CASES

82. Was It a Wise Thing to Say?

On a small island a man was being tried for a crime. Now,

the court knew that the defendant was born and bred on the

neighboring island of knights and knaves. (We recall that

knights always tell the truth and knaves always lie. ) The

FROM THE FIES OF ISPECTOR CRAG 7 1

defendant was allowed to make only one statement in his

OWdefense. He thought for a while and then came out with

tis statement: "The person who actually committed this

crime is a knave. "

Was this a wise thing for him t have said? Did it help

or injure his case? Or did it make no difference?

83. The Case of the Uncertain Prosecutor. @

On another occasion two men X, Y were being tried for a

crime on this island. Now the most curious aspect of this

case is that the prosecuting attorey was know to be either

a knight or a knave. He made the following two statements

in court:

( 1) X is guilty.

(2) X and Y û0 not bot guilty.

I you were on the jury, what would you make of this? Could

you come to any conclusion about the guilt of either X or Y?

What would be your opinion about the veracity of the

prosecutor?

84.

In the above situation, suppose, instead, the prosecutor

had made the following two statements:

( 1) Either X or Y is guilty.

(2) X is not guilty.

What would you conclude?

85.

In the same situation, suppose, instead, the prosecutor had

made the followng two statements:

72 OTHER MYSTERIS

(1) Either X is innocent or Y is guilty.

(2) X is guilty.

What would you conclude?

86 .

This case took place on the island of knights, knaves, and

normals. We recall that knights always tell the truth, knaves

always lie, and normals sometimes lie and sometimes tell

the truth.

Three inhabitants of the island, A, B, and C, were

being tried for a crime. It was known that the crime was

committed by only one of them. It was also known that the

one who committed the crime was a knight, and the only

knight among them. The three defendants made the fol�

lowing statements:

A: I am innocent.

B: That is true.

C: B is not normal.

Which one is guilty?

87.

This, the most interesting case of all, bears a supericial

resemblance to the above but is really quite different. It also

took place on the island of knights, knaves, and normals.

The principal actors in this case were the defendant,

the prosecutor, and the defense attorey. The first bafing

thing was that it was known that one of them was a knight,

one a knave, and one normal, though it was not know

which was which. Even stranger, the court knew that i the

defendant was not guilty, then the guilty one was either the

defense attorey or the prosecutor. It was also known that

the guilty one was not a knave. The three made the fol

lowing statements in court:

FROM THE FILES OF ISPECTOR CRAIG 73

Defendant / I am innocent.

Defense Attorney / My client is indeed innocent

Posecutor / Not true, the defendant is guilty.

These statements certainly seemed natural enough. The

j ury convened, but could not come to any decision; the

above evidence was insufficient Now, this island was a

British possession at the time, hence the government wired

to Scotland Yard asking whether they could send Inspector

Craig to come over to help settle the case.

Several weeks later Inspector Craig arrived, and the

trial was reconvened. Craig said to himself, "I want to get to

the bottom of thi s! " He wanted to know not only who was

guilty, but also which one was the knight, which the knave,

and which the normal. So he decided to ask just enough

questions to settle these facts. First he asked the prose

cutor, "Are you, by any chance, the guilty one?" The

prosecutor answered. Inspector Craig thought for a while,

and then he asked the defendant, "Is the prosecutor

guilty?" The defendant answered, and Inspector Craig

knew everything.

Who was guilty, who was normal, who was the knight,

and who was the knave?

SOLUTIONS

71 .

I shall first show that at least one of A, C is guilty. If B i s

innocent, then it' s obvious that A and/or C is guilty-since

by (1), no one other than A, B, C is guilty. I B i s guilty, then

he must have had an accomplice (since he can't drive) , so

again A or C must be guilty. So A or C (or both) are guilty. I

C is innocent, then A must be a guilty one. On the other

hand, if C is guilty, then by statement (2) , A i s also guilty.

Therefore A is guilty.

74 OTHER MYSTERIS

72.

This is even simpler. If A is innocent, then, since C is

innocent, B must be guilty-by ( 1) . I A i s guilty, then, by

(2) , he had an accomplice, who couldn' t be C-by (3) , hence

must be B. So in either case, B is guilty.

73.

Suppose B were innocent. Then one of the twins must be

guilty. This twin must have had an accomplice who couldn' t

be B hence must have been the other twin. But this is

impossible since one of the twins was in Dover at the time.

Therefore B is guilty. And since B always works alone, both

twns are innocent.

74.

B must be guilty. This can be shown by either of the fol

lowing arguments.

Argument One: Suppose B were innocent. Then if A were

guilty, C would also be guilty-by statement {I) -but this

would mean that A worked with C, which contradicts state

ment (3) . Therefore A must be innocent. Then C i s the only

guilty one, contradicting statement (2) . Therefore B is

guilty •

. Argument Two: A more direct argument is this: (a) Sup

pose A is guilty. Then by (1) , B and C cannot both be

innocent, hence A must have had an accomplice. This ac

complice couldn't have been C-by (3) , hence must have

been B. So i A is guilty, B is also guilty. (b) Suppose C is

guilty. Then he had an accomplice-by (2)-which couldn' t

be A-by (3)-hence must again be B.

(c) If neither A nor C i s guilty, then B certainly is!

FROM THE FILES OF ISPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 75

75@

Inspector Craig indicted Mr. McGregor for falsely claiming

there was a robbery, when in fact there couldn' t have been

one! His reasoning was as follows.

Step One: Suppose A were guilty. Then he had exactly one

accomplice-by (2) . Then one of B, C is guilty and the other

innocent. This contradicts (3) and (5), which j ointly imply

that B, C are either both innocent or both guilty. Therefore

A must be innocent.

Step Two: Again, by (3) and (5) , B and C are both guilty or

both innocent. I they were both guilty, then they were the

only guilty ones (since A is innocent) . Then there would be

exactly two guilty ones, which by statement ( 4) would imply

that A is guilty. This is a contradiction, since A is innocent.

Therefore B, C are both innocent.

Step Three: Now it is established that A, B, C are all inno

cent. Yet, by statement ( 1) , no one other than A, B, C had

been in the shop on the day of the robbery and could have

commited the robbery. Ergo, there was no robbery and

McGregor was lying.

Epilogue:

Conronted by Craig' s irrefutable logic, McGregor broke

down and confessed that he had indeed lied and was trying

to collect insurance.

76.

If B was guilty, then by (2) exactly two people were in

volved; if C was guilty, then by (3) exactly three people were

involved. These can' t both be the case, hence at least one of

B, C is innocent. A i s also innocent, so there are at most two

guilty ones. Therefore C did not have exactly two accom

plices, so by (3) C must be innocent. If B is guilty then he

76 OTHER MYSTERIS

had exactly one accomplice, who must have been D (since

A,C are both innocent) . If B is innocent, then A, B, C are all

innocent, in which case D must be guilty. So regardless of

whether B is guilty or innocent, D must be guilty. Therefore

D is guilty.

779

The prosecutor said, in effect, that the defendant didn't

commit the crime alone. The defense attorney denied this,

which is tantamount to saying that the defendant did

commit the crime alone.

789

This i s extremely simple. By (1) , i A i s innocent, then C is

guilty (because if A is innocent then the statement, "either

A is innocent or B is guilty" is true) . By (2) , if A is innocent

then C is innocent. Therefore i A is innocent, then C is both

guilty and innocent, which is impossible. Therefore A must

be guilty.

79.

The two are B and C; at least one of them must be guilty.

For, suppose A is innocent. Then B or C must be guilty by

( 1) . On the other hand suppose A i s guilty. If B is guilty,

then certainly at least one of B, C is guilty. But suppose that

B is innocent. Then A is guilty and B is innocent, hence by

(2) , C must be guilty, so again either B or C is guilty.

80.

We first show that if A is guilty, so is C. Well, suppose A is

guilty. Then by (2) , either B or C is guilty. I B is innocent,

then it must be C who is guilty. But suppose B is guilty.

Then A and B are both guilty, hence by (1) C is guilty too.

This proves that if A is guilty, so is C. Also, by (3) , i C is

FROM THE FILES OF ISPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 77

guilty so is D. Combining these two facts, we see that if A is

guilty, so is D. But by (4) , if A is innocent, so i s D. There

fore, rtgardless of whether A is guilty or innocent, D must

be guilty. So D is definitely guilty. The rest are all doubtul.

' 81 . m

The answer is that all of them are guilty. By (3), if D is inno

cent then A is guilty. By (4) , if D is guilty, then Ais guilty. So

whether D is innocent or guilty, A must be guilty. Hence by

( 1) , B i s also guilty. Hence by (2) , either C is guilty or A is

innocent. But we already know that A is not innocent, th�re

fore C must be guilty. Finally, by (3) , if D is innocent then C

is innocent. But we have proved that C is not innocent,

hence D must be guilty. So all of them are guilty.

82.

Yes, it was wise; it acquitted him. For suppose the de

fendant is a knight. Then his statement is true, hence the

guilty man is a knave, hence the defendant must be inno

cent. On the other hand, suppose the defendant is a knave.

Then his statement is false, so the criminal is actually a

knight, so again the defendant is innocent.

83.

Suppose the prosecutor were a knave. Then ( 1) and (2)

would both be false. Since (1) is false, then X is innocent.

Since (2) is false, then X,Y are both guilty-hence X is

guilty. This is a contradiction. So the prosecutor must be a

knight. Hence X really is guilty, and since they are not both

guilty, Y must be innocent. Therefore X is guilty, Y is inno

cent, and the prosecutor is a knight.

84. m

H the prosecutor were a knave, then it would be the case

that (1) X and Y are both innocent; (2) X is guilty. Again.

78 OTHER MYSTERIS

this is a contradiction, so the prosecutor is a knight, X is

innocent, and Y is guilty.

85&

Again, suppose the prosecutor were a knave. Then ( 1) is

false, so X is guilty and Y is innocent. Hence X i s guilty. But

(2) is also false, hence X is innocent: another contradiction.

Hence the prosecutor is again a knight. Therefore, by (2) , X

is guilty. Then by ( 1) (since X is not innocent) , Y must be

guilty. So this time X and Y are both guilty.

86&

A cannot be a knight, for if he were he would be guilty and

wouldn' t have lied about being innocent. Also A cannot be a

knave, for i he were, his statement would be false, hence he

would be guilty and hence would be a knight. Therefore A is

normal, hence also innocent. Since A is innocent, B' s state

ment is true. Therefore B is not a knave; he is a knight or

normal. Suppose B were normal. Then C' s statement would

be false, hence C would be a knave or a normal. This would

mean that none of A,B, C is a knight, hence none of them is

guilty, contrary to what is given. Therefore B cannot be

normal, he must be a knight and hence guilty.

87.

Before Crig Arrived: To begin with, 1 A cannot be a knave,

because i he were a knave his statement would be false,

hence he would be guilty, contrary to the given condition that

the knave is not guilty. Therefore A is either a knight or

normal.

Possibility One: A is a knight: Then his statement is true,

hence he is innocent. Then B' s statement is also true, hence

B is a knight or normal. But A is the knight, so B i s normal.

IWe are letting A be the defendant, B the defense attorey, and C the prosecutor.

FROM THE FILES OF ISPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 79

This leaves C as the knave. So, since it is known that the

knave is not guilty, B is guilty.

Possibility Two: A is normal and innocent: Then B' s state

ment is again true, hence B is the knight (since A is the

. normal one). So, since A is innocent, and C, being the

knave, is innocent, then B is guilty.

Possibility Three: A is normal and guilty: Then the prose

cutor's statement was true, so the prosecutor must be a

knight (again, he can't be normal, since A is). This leaves B

as the knave.

Let us summarize the three possibilities:

(1) (2) (3)

Defendant Innocent Knight Innocent Normal Guilty Normal

Defense

Attorey Guilty Noral Guilty Knight Innocent Knave

Prosecutor Innocent Knave Innocent Knave Innocent Knight

All three possibilities are consistent with the statements

made before Craig arrived.

After Craig Arrived: Craig asked the prosecutor whether he

was guilty. Now, he already knew that he was innocent (be

cause in all of the above three possibilities, the prosecutor is

innocent); so the prosecutor's answer would only serve to let

Craig know whether the prosecutor was a knight or a knave.

Had he truthfully answered "No," revealing himself to be a

knight, then Craig would have known that possibility (3) was

in fact the only one, hence he would not have asked any more

questions. But after the prosecutor's answer, Craig did ask

more questions. Therefore the prosecutor must have been a

knave and answered "Yes. " So now Craig (as well as the

reader) knows that possibility (3) is out, which leaves ( 1 ) and

80 OTHER MSTERIS

(2) . This means that the defense attorey is in fact the guilty

one, but it is still unknown which of the defendant and the

defense attorney is the knight and which is normal. Craig

then asked the defendant whether the prosecutor was

guilty, and after he was answered, he knew the entire

situation. Well, a knight would have to answer "No" to this

question, whereas a normal could answer it either "Yes" or

"N O.

¹

Had the answer been "No," there would have been no

way of Craig' s knowing whether the defendant was a knight

or a normal. But Craig did know, therefore he must have

gotten a "Yes" answer. Therefore the defendant is normal

and the defense attorey is a knight (though guilty) .

FROM THE FILES OF ISPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 8 1

aid

ves ..

ther Practical

its of dvice

This chapter is concered more with the practical than the

recreational aspects of logic. There are many situations in

life in which it is good to have one' s wts about one. So I shall

now give you detailed, step-by- step instructions which will

teach you: (A) how to avoid werewolves in the forest;

(B) how to choose a bride; (C) how to defend yourself in

court; (D) how to marry a king' s daughter.

Of course, I cannot absolutely guarantee that you will

actually meet with any of these situations, but as the White

Knight wisely explained to Alice, it is well to be provided for

everthing.

A. WHAT TO DO IN THE FOREST OF

WEREWOLVES

Suppose you are visiting a forest in which every inhabi

tant is either a knight or a knave. (We recall that knights

always tell the truth and knaves always lie. ) In addition,

some of the inhabitants are werewolves and have the

annoying habit of sometimes turing into wolves at night

and devouring people. A werewolf can be either a knight or

a knave.

82 OTHER MYSTERIS

88"

You are interviewing three inhabitants, A, B, and C, and it is

known that exactly one of them is a werewolf. They make

the following statements:

A: C is a werewolf.

B: I am not a werewolf.

C: At least two of us are knaves.

Our problem has two parts:

(a) Is the werewolf a knight or a knave?

(b) If you have to take one of them as a traveling companion,

and it is more important that he not be a werewolf than

that he not be a knave, which one would you pick?

890

Again, each of A, B, C is a knight or a knave and exactly one

of them is a werewolf. They make the following statements:

A: I am a werewolf.

B: I am a werewolf.

C: At most one of us is a knight.

Give a complete classification of A, B, and C.

909

In this and the next two problems there are again three

inhabitants A, B, C, each of whom is either a knight or a

knave. However only two of them, A, B, make statements.

But in these statements, the word "us" refers to the three

people A, B, C-not to j ust A and B.

Suppose A, B make the following statements:

A: At least one of the three of us i s a knight.

B: At least one of the three of us is a knave.

HOW TO AVOI WEREWOLVES 83

Given that at least one of them is a werewolf, and that none

of them is both a knight and a werewolf, which ones are

werewolves?

91 .

This time, we get the following statements:

A: At least one of the three of us is a knave.

B: C is a knight.

Given that there is exactly one werewolf and that he is a

kight, who is the werewolf

92.

In this problem we get the folowing two statements:

A: At least one of the three of us is a knave.

R: C is a werewolf.

Again, there is exactly one werewolf and he is a knight. Who

is he?

93.

In this problem we are given that there is exactly one wereo

wolf and that he is a knight, and that the other two are

knaves. Only one of them, B, makes a statement: "C is a

werewolf. "

Who is the werewolf

94.

Here is an elegantly simple one involving j ust two inhabio

tants, A and B. Just one of them is a werewolf. They make

the following statements:

84 OTHER MYSTERIES

A: The werewolf is a knight,

B: The werewolf is a knave.

Which one would you select for your traveling companion?

B. HOW TO WIN OR CHOOSE A BRIDE

95. How Do You Convince Her? _______

Suppose you are an inhabitant of the island of knights and

knaves. You fall in love with a girl there and wish to marry

her. However, this girl has strange tastes; for some odd

reason she does not wsh to marry a knight; she wants to

marr only a knave. But she wants a rich knave, not a poor

one. (We assume for convenience that everyone there is

classified as either rich or poor.) Suppose, in fact, tat you

are a rich knave. You are allowed to make only one state�

ment to her. How, in only one statement, can you convince

her that you are a rich knight?

96.

Suppose, instead, the girl you love wants to marry only a

rich knight. How, in one statement, could you convince her

that you are a rich knight?

97 . How to Choose a Bride. _______ _

This time you are a visitor to the island of knights and

knaves. Every female there is either a knight or a knave.

You fall in love with one of the females there-a girl named

Elizabeth-and are thinking of marrying her. However, you

want to know just what you are getting into; you do not wish

to marry a knave. If you were allowed to question her, there

would be no problem, but an ancient taboo of the island

forbids a man to hold speech with any female unless he is

already married to her. However, Elizabeth has a brother

HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES 85

Arthur who is also a knight or a knave (but not necessarily

the same as his sister) . You are allowed to ask j ust one

question of the brother, but the question must be answer

able by "Yes" or "No. "

The problem is for you to design a question such that

upon hearing the answer, you will know for sure whether

Elizabeth is a knight or a knave. What question would you

ask?

98. How to Choose a Bride on the Island of Bahava.

This time you are visiting the island of Bahava, in which

there are knights, who always tell the truth, knaves, who

always lie, and normals, who sometimes lie and sometimes

tell the truth. Bahava, we recall, is a female liberationist

island, hence the females are also called knights, knaves, or

normals. Since you are an outsider, you are not subj ect to

the inj unction that a knight may marry only a knight and a

knave only a knave, so you are free to marry the female of

your choice.

Now, you are to pick a bride from among three sisters

A, B, C. It is known that one of them is a knight, one a knave,

and the other normal. But it is also known (to your horror!)

that the normal one is a werewolf, but the other two are

not. Now, let us assume that you don't mind marrying a

knave (or a knight) , but marrying a werewolf is going just a

bit too far! You are allowed to ask any one question of your

choice to any of the three sisters of your choice, but again

the question must have a " Yes" or "No" answer.

What question would you ask?

C. YES, YOU ARE INNOCENT, BUT CAN YOU

PROVE IT?

We now come to a particularly enticing group of puzzles.

They all take place on the island of knights, knaves, and

normals. You yourself are now one of the inhabitants of the

i sland.

86 OTHER MYSTERIS

A crime has been committed on the island, and for

some strange reason it is suspected that you are the crimi

nal. You are brought to court and tried. You are allowed to

make only one statement in your own behalf. Your purpose

is to convince the jury that you are innocent.

99.

Suppose it is known that the criminal is a knave. Suppose

also that you are a knave (though the court doesn' t know

this) but that you are nevertheless innocent of this crime.

You are allowed to make only one statement. Your purpose

is not to convince the jury that you are not a knave, but only

that you are innocent of the crime. What would you say?

100.

Suppose you are in the same situation except for the fact

that you are guilty. What statement could you make which

would convince the jury (assuming they were rational be

ings) that you are innocent?

101 . �

In this problem, suppose it is know that the criminal is a

knight. (This is no contradiction; a person doesn' t neces

sarily have to lie in order to commit a crime. ) Suppose also

that you are a knight (but the j ur doesn't know this) but

innocent of the crime. What statement would you make?

102.

Here is a more difficult one. Suppose that in this problem it

is know that the criminal is not normal-he is a knight or a

knave. You yourself are innocent. What statement could

you make which could be made by either a knight, a knave,

or a normal in your position, which would convince the jury

that you are innocent?

HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES 87

l03@

Here is a much easier one. Again it is known that the

criminal is not normal. Again you are not the criminal, but

you are normal. What statement could you make which

neither an innocent knight or knave could . make which

would convince the jury that you are innocent?

104.

Here is a more interesting one. Again it is known that the

criminal is not normal. Let us suppose that ( 1) You are

innocent; (2) you are not a knave.

Is there one single statement you could make which

would simultaneously convince the jury of both of these

facts?

105.

A sort of "dual" to the above problem i s this: Suppose that

again the guilty one is not normal and that you are an innoe

cent but not a knight. Suppose that for some odd reason,

you don't mind getting the reputation of being a knave or a

noral, but you despise kights. Could you in one state

ment convince the j ury that you are innocent but not a

knight?

D. HO\V TO MARRY A KING'S DAUGHTER

And now we come to the topic which I am sure you have all

been anxiously waiting for!

1060

You are an inhabitant of the island of knights, knaves, and

normals. You are in love with the King' s daughter Margo

zita and wish to marry her. Now, the King does not wish his

88 OTHER MYSTERIS

daughter to marry a normal. He says to her: "My dear, you

really shouldn' t marry a normal, you know. Normals are

capricious, random, and totally unreliable. With a normal,

you never know where you stand; one day he is telling you

the truth, and the next day he is lying to you. What good i s

that? Now, a knight is thoroughly reliable, and with him you

always know where you stand. A knave is really as good,

because whenever he says anything, all you have to do is

believe the opposite, so you still know how matters really

are. Besides, I believe a man should stick to his principles.

, If a man believes in telling the truth, then let him always tell

the truth. I he believes in lying, let him at least be con

sistent about it. But these wishy-washy bourgeois normals

-no my dear, they are not for you! "

Well now, suppose that you are in fact not normal, so

you have a chance. However, you must convince the King

that you are not normal, otherwise he won' t let you marry

his daughter. You are allowed an audience with the King

and you are allowed to make as many statements to him as

you like. This problem has two parts.

(a) What is the smallest number of true statements

you can make which will convince the King that you are not

normal?

(b) What is the smallest number of false statements

you can make whch will convince the King that you are not

normal?

107.

On another island of knights, knaves, and normals, the King

has the opposite philosophy. He says to his daughter: "Dar

ling, I don't want you to marry a knight or a knave; I want

you to mary a good solid normal. You don't want to marry a

knight, because knights are too sanctimonious. You don't

want to marry a knave, because knaves are too treacherous.

No, my dear, a good, conventional, bourgeois normal is just

the thing for you! "

HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES 89

Suppose you are a normal on this island. Your job is to

convince the King that you are normal.

(a) What is the smallest number of true statements you

could make which would convince the King that you are

normal?

(b) What is the smallest number of false statements you

could make which would convince the King that you

are normal?

1080

Here' s a more difficult version of the above problem. The

solution of this one constitutes an alternative (though un

necessarily complicated) solution of the preceding one, but

the solution given for the previous one will not suffice to

solve this one.

Again, you are a normal on an island of knights,

knaves, and normals. Again the King wants his daughter to

marry only a normal, but he also requires proof of excep

tional ingenuity and intelligence. Therefore, to win his

daughter, you must make a single statement in his presence

which will simultaneously satisfy the following two re

quirements:

(1) It must convince the King that you are normal.

(2) It must make it impossible for the King to kow whether

the statement is true or false.

How can this be done?

SOLUTIONS

88.

C is either a knight or a knave. Suppose he is a knight. Then

there really are at least two knaves, hence they must be A

90 OTHER MYSTERIS

and B. Then B must be a werewolf (since he says he isn' t

but he is a knave) . So if C is a knight, then the werewolf is a

knave (since he must be B) . On the other hand, suppose C is

a knave. Then it is not true that at least two of them are

knaves, so there is at most one knave. This knave must be

C, hence A, B are both knights. Since A is a knight and

claims that C is a werewolf, then C really is a werewolf. So in

this case, the werewolf is again a knave-namely, he is C.

Therefore, regardless of whether C is a knight or a

kave, the werewolf is a knave (though a different person in

each case) . So the answer to the first question is that the

werewolf is a knave. Also, we have proved that the werewolf

is either B or C; hence if you wish to choose someone who is

definitely not a werewolf, then pick A.

89.

We first show that C is a knight. Suppose he were a knave.

Then his statement would be false, hence there would be at

least two knights. Then A, B would both have to be knights

(since C is assumed a knave) , which would mean that their

statements were true and they were both werewolves,

which contradicts the given conditions of the problem.

Therefore C is a knight. Then there really are two knaves;

these must be A and B. Then, since their statements are

false, neither A nor B is a werewolf, so the werewolf must be

C. Thus C is a knight and a werewolf; A and B are knaves

and neither one a werewolf.

90.

If B were a knave then there would indeed be at least one

knave among them, hence his statement would be true, but

knaves don' t make true statements. Therefore B is a knight.

Then A' s statement is true, so A is also a knight. So A and B

are both knights. Since B is a knight, his statement is true

so there is at least one knave. This knave must be C. Hence

C is the one and only werewolf.

HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 91

91 .

A must be a knight for the same reasons that B was a knight

in the last problem, namely that if A were a knave, it would

be true that at least one of the three was a knave, and we

would have a knave making a true statement. Since A i s a

knight, his statement is true, so there really is at least one

knave present. If B were a knight, then C would also be

(because of B' s statement) and we would have three knights.

But A says truthfully that there is at least one knave.

Therefore B must be a knave. And since B says that C is a

knight, C is really a knave. Thus A is the only knight, hence

A is the werewolf.

92.

Again, because of A' s statement, A must be a knight and

there must be at least one knave. If B were a knight then C

would be a werewolf, hence also a knight, and we would

have three knights. Therefore B is a knave. Hence C is not a

werewolf. Also B can't be a werewolf (since we are given

that the werewolf is a knight) . So again A is the werewolf.

93.

If B were a knight, then C would be a werewolf and also a

knight and we would have two knights. So B is a knave.

Hence C is not a werewolf. Also B, being a knave, is not a

werewolf. So again A is the werewolf.

94.

You should select B. Suppose B is a knight. Then his state

ment is true, hence the werewolf is a knave, hence cannot be

B. Suppose B is a knave. Then his statement is false, which

means that the werewolf i s actually a knight, hence again

cannot be B.

92 OTHER MYSTERIS

95.

**All you have to say is, "I am a poor knave. " She will immedi
**

ately know that you can' t be a knight (since a knight would

never lie and �ay he is a poor knave) , hence you must be a

knave. Hence also your statement is false, so you are not a

poor knave. But you are a knave, hence you must be a rich

knave.

96.

You say, "I am not a poor knight. " She would reason that if

you were a knave, you would indeed not be a poor knight,

hence your statement would be true, hence you-a knave

would be making a true statement. Therefore you are a

knight. Hence also your statement is true, so you are not a

poor knight. But you are a knight, hence you must be a rich

kight.

97.

This problem has several solutions. The simplest I can

think of i s that you ask, "Are you and Elizabeth of the same

type?" The interesting thing is that i he answers "Yes, "

then Elizabeth must be a knight, regardless of whether the

brother is a knight or knave, and if the brother answers

"No, " then Elizabeth must be a knave, regardless of what

the brother is. Let us prove this.

Suppose he answers "Yes. " Now, the brother is either

a knight or a knave. I he is a knight, then his statement that

Elizabeth is of the same type is true, hence Elizabeth must

also be a knight. If he i s a knave, then his statement is false,

hence he and Elizabeth are of different types, which means

that Elizabeth is again a knight. Thus i Arthur answers

"Yes, " Elizabeth is a knight.

Suppose Arthur answers "No. " I he is a knight then

he is telling the truth, hence he and Elizabeth are of

HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 93

different types, hence Elizabeth must be a knave. I he is a

knave, then his statement is false, hence Elizabeth really i s

of the same type, hence must again be a knave. So i f he

answers "No, " then Elizabeth is a knave.

98.

Again, there are several ways to solve this. The simplest

and most elegant solution I know is to pick one of them

say A-and ask her, "Is B of lower rank than C?"l

Suppose A answers "Yes!' Then you should pick B for

your bride for the following reasons: Suppose A is a knight.

Then B really is of lower rank than C, hence B is a knave and

C is normal. In this case, B is not the werewolf (since C is) .

Suppose that A is a knave. Then B is actually of higher ran

k

than C, which means that B is a knight and C normal, so

again B is not a werewolf. I A is normal, then B is certainly

not the werewolf, since A is. Thus, regardless of whether A

is a knight, a knave, or a normal, if A answers "Yes" to your

question, then you should pick B for your bride.

I A should answer "No, " then it is the same as i she

should assert that C is of lower rank that B, rather than that

B is of lower rank than C, so in this case pick C for your

bride.

One statement which would acquit you is, "I am guilty. "

You, a knave, can actually say that, since it is false, and it

will indeed acquit you, for the jury will correctly reason

thus: I you really were guilty, then you would be a knave

(since it is given that the criminal is known to be a knave) ,

but then you, a knave, would be making a true statement.

Thus the assumption that you are guilty leads to a contra

diction, hence you are innocent.

l

We recall that knights are of the highest rank, normals are of the middle rank, and

knaves are of the lowest rank.

94 OTHER MSTERIS

The above reasoning is an example of a reductio ad

absurdum argument (proof of the falsity of a statement by

reducing it to absurdity) . A more direct argument the jury

could have used is this: Either you are a knave or you are

not (remember, the jury doesn' t know whether or not you

are a knave) . I you are a knave then your statement i s false,

hence you are innocent. I you are not a knave, then you are

certainly innocent, since the guilty one is a knave.

100.

No such statement is possible. If, after making a state

ment, the jury could rationally deduce that you are inno

cent, then, since they are rational and have used correct

reasoning, it must be the case that you really are innocent.

But this is contrary to the assumption that you are guilty.

101 .

This is a sort of "dual" to problem 99, and, i anything, even

simpler. All you need say is, "I am innocent. " The jury wll

reason that i you are a knight (which they don' t know) then

your statement is true, hence you are innocent, and i you

are not a knight, then again you are innocent, since the

guilty one is known to be a knight.

l02�

One solution i s to say: "Either I am a knight and innocent,

or I am a knave and guilty. " Let' s say you phrase it a bit

more simply thus: "I am either an innocent knight or a

. guilty knave. " The jury would then reason about you as

follows:

Step One: Suppose he i s a knight. Then his statement i s

true, hence he is either an innocent knight or a guilty knave.

He can't be a guilty knave, since he is not a knave, hence he

is an innocent knight. Hence he is innocent.

HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 95

Step To: Suppose he is a knave. Then his statement is

false, hence he is neither an innocent knight nor a guilty

knave. In particular, he is not a guilty knave. But he is a

knave. Then he must be an innocent kave, hence inocent.

Step Three: I he is normal, then he is certainly innocent,

since the guilty one is not normal.

103.

This is indeed quite simple. All you need to say is, "I û a

knave. " Neither a knight nor a knave could say that, hence

you must be normal, hence also innocent.

104.

Yes, you could say, "I am not a guilty knight. " The jury

would reason tis way:

Step One: Suppose he (meaning "you") were a knave. Then

he is not a knight, hence certainly not a guilty knight, so his

statement would be true. This is impossible, since knaves

don't make true statements. Therefore he cannot be a

kave.

Step Two: Now we know that he is either a knight or

noral. I he is normal, he is innocent. Suppose he is a

kight. Then his statement is true. Therefore he is not a

guilty kight. But he is a knight. Hence he must be an inno

cent kight.

I might remark that you could alteratively have said,

"Either I am not a knight or I am innocent, " or you could

have said, "I I am a knight then I am innocent. "

105.

Yes, you could say, "I am a guilty knave. " The jury would

reason this way: "Obviously he is not a knight. So he is

96 OTHER MSTERIES

normal or a knave. I he is normal, he is innocent. Suppose

he is ô knave. Then his statement is false, so he is not a

guilty knave. Hence he is an innocent knave. "

1068

No amount of statements could possibly do this. Given any

set of statements you make, a normal person could make

the same statements, since a noral person can say any

thing. So there is no way you can marry this King' s daugh

ter. Sorry! Better luck on the next island!

107.

In both cases, one statement i s enough. A true statement

which would convince the King is: "I am not a knight. "

(either a knight nor a knave could say this. ) A false state

ment which would do the job is: "I am a knave. "

I wish to remark (in connection with the next prob

lem) that if you make the first statement, then the King wll

know that although you are normal, you have just made a

true statement; and if you make the second statement, the

King will know that although you are normal, you have just

made a false statement.

108.

Take any proposition whose truth or falsity i s unknown to

the King-for example, that you are now carrying exactly

eleven dollars in your pocket. Then a statement you could

make is: "Either I am normal and am now carying exactly

eleven dollars in my pocket, or else I am a knave. "

A knave could never make that statement (because it

is true that a knave i s either a noral who is carrying eleven

dollars or a knave) . A knight also couldn' t make that state

ment (because a knight is neither a normal who i s caring

HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 97

eleven dollars nor a knave) . Therefore the King will know

that you are normal, but he cannot know whether your

statement is true or false without knowing how much money

you are carrying.

98 OTHER MSTERIS

Logic Puzzles

PREABLE

Many of the puzzles in this chapter deal with so-called

conditional statements: statements of the form "If P is true

then Q is true, " where P Q are statements under considera

tion. Befre turning to puzzles of this type, we must care

fully clear up some ambiguities which might arise. There are

certain facts about such statements which everyone agrees

on, but there are others about which there appears to be

considerable disagreement.

Let us t to a concrete example. Consider the

following statement:

( 1) I John is guilty, then his wife is guilty.

Everyone wl agree tat i John is guilty and if statement

( 1) is true, then his wife is also guilty.

Everyone will also agree that i John is guilty and his

wife is innocent, then statement ( 1) must be false.

Now, suppose it is known that his wife is guilty, but it

is not known whether John is guilty or innocent. Would you

then say that statement ( 1) is true or not? Would you not say

that whether John is guilty or whether he is innocent, his

wfe is guilty in any case? Or would you not say: If John is

LOGIC PUZZLES 99

guilty then his wife is guilty, and if John is innocent then his

wife is guilty?

Illustrations of this use of language abound in the

literature: In Rudyard Kpling' s story Riki- Tki- Tavi, the

cobra says to the terrified family, "I you move I will strike,

. and if you don' t move I will strike. " This means nothing

more or less than: "I wll strike. " There is also the story of

the Zen-master Tokusan, who used to answer all questions,

as well as nonquestions, with blows from his stick. His

famous saying is: "Thirty blows when you have something

to say; thirty blows just the same when you have nothing to

say. "

The upshot is that if a statement Q is true outright,

then so is the statement, "I P then Q" (as well as the

statement, "I not P, then Q") .

The most controversial case of all is this: Supposing P

Q are both false. Then is the statement, "If P then Q" true

or false? Or does it depend on what P and Q are? Returing

to our example, if John and his wife are both innocent, then

should statement ( 1) be called true or not? We shall return

to this vital question shortly.

A related question is this: We have already agreed that

if John is guilty and his wfe innocent, then statement ( 1)

must be false. Is the converse true? That i s, if statement ( 1)

i s false, does i t follow that John must be guilty and his we

innocent? Put otherwise, is it the case that the only way that

( 1) can be false is that John be guilty and his wfe innocent?

Well, according to the way most logicians, mathematicians,

and scientists use the words "if . . . then, " the answer i s

"yes, " and this is the convention we shall adopt. In other

words, given any two statements P and Q, whenever I wite

"If P then Q" I shall mean nothing more nor less than "It is

not the case that Pis true and Q i s false. " In particular, this

means that if John and his wife are both innocent, then

statement ( 1) is to be regarded as true. For the only way the

statement can be false is that John is guilty and his wfe i s

innocent, and this state of afairs can' t hold if John and his

wfe are both innocent. Stated otherwise, if John and his

100 OTHER MYSTERIS

wife are both innocent, then it is certainly not the case that

John is guilty and his wife is innocent, therefore the stte�

ment cannot be false.

The following is an even more bizare example:

(2) I Confucius was bor in Texas, then I am Dracula.

All statement (2) is intended to mean is that it is not the

case that Confucius was bor in Texas and that I am not

Dracula. This indeed is so, since Confucius was not bor in

Texas. Therefore statement (2) is to be regarded as true.

Another way to look at the matter is that the only way

(2) can be false is i Confucius was born in Texas and I am

not Dracula. Well, since Confucius was not born in Texas,

then it can't be the case that Confucius was bor in Texas

and that I am not Dracula. In other words, (2) cannot be

false, so i t must be true.

Now let us consider two arbitrary statements P Q,

and the followng statement formed from them:

(3) I P then Q.

This statement is symbolized: P ¯ Q, and is alteratively

read: "P implies Q. " The use of the word "implies" may be

somewhat unfortunate, but i t has found its way into the

literature in this sense. All the statement means, as we have

seen, is that it is not the case that P is true and Q is false.

Thus we have the following facts:

Fact 1 : I P is false, then P ¯ Q is automatically true.

Fact 2: I Q is true, then P ¯ Q is automatically true.

Fact 3: The one and only way thatP ..Q can be false is that

P is true and Q is false.

Fact 1 is sometimes paraphrased: "A false proposition im

plies any proposition. " This sttement came as quite U

shock to many· a philosopher (see Chapter 1 4, number 244,

for a further discussion) . Fact 2 is sometimes paraphrased:

"A true proposition is implied by any proposition. "

LOGIC PUZZLES 1 01

A Truth-Table Summary

Given any two statements P, Q, there are always exactly four

possibilities: ( 1) P, Q are both true; (2) P is true and Q is

false; (3) P i s false and Q i s true; (4) P, Q are both false.

One and only one of these possibilities must hold.

Now, let us consider the statement, "I P then Q (symbo

lized: P ¯ Q) . Can it be determined in which of the four

cases it holds and in which ones it doesn' t? Yes it can, by the

following analysis:

Case 1: P and Q are both true. In this case Q is true, hence P

¯ Q is tue by Fact 2.

Case 2: P is true and Q is false. In this case, P ¯ Q i s false by

Fact 3.

Case 3: P is false and Q is true. Then P ¯Q i s true by Fact 1

(also by Fact 2) .

Case 4: P is false and Q is false. Then P ¯ Q is true by

Fact 1 .

These four cases are all summarized in the following table,

called the truth- table for implication.

P Q P - Q

( 1) T T T

(2) T F F

(3) F T T

(4) F F T

The first row, T,T,T (true, true, tre) , means that whenPis

true and Q is true, P ¯ Q is true. The second row, T, F, F,

means that when P is true and Q is false then P ¯ Q is false.

The third row says that when P is false and Q is true, P ..Q

is true, and the fourth row says that when P is false and Q is

false, then P .. Q is true.

We note that P ¯ Q is true in three out of four of those

cases; only in the second is it false.

1 02 OTHER MYSTERIS

Another Poperty of Implication. Another important prop

erty of implication is this: To show that a statement "If P

then Q" holds, it suffices to assume P as premise and then

show that Q must follow. In other words, i the assumption

of P leads to Q as a conclusion, then the statement "If P

then Q" is established.

We shall henceforth refer to this fact as Fact 4.

A. APPLICATION TO KIGHTS AD

KNAVES

109.

We have two people A, B, each of whom is either a knight or

a knave. Suppose A makes the following statement: "I I am

a knight, then so i s B. "

Can i t be determined what A and B are?

1 10.

Someone asks A, "Are you a knight?" He replies, "I I' m a

knight, then I' ll eat my hat! "

Prove that A has to eat his hat.

1 1 1.

A says, "If I' m a knight, then two plus two equals four. " Is A

a knight or a knave?

1 12.

A says, "I I' m a knight, then two plus two equals five. "

What would you conclude?

1 13.

Given two people, A, B, both of whom are knights or knaves.

A says, "If B i s a knight then I am a knave. "

LOGIC PUZZLES 103

What are A and B?

1 14. �

Two individuals, X and Y, were being tried for participation

.

in a robbery. A and B were court witnesses, and each of A,B

is either a knight or a knave. The witnesses make the fol

lowing statements:

A: I X is guilty, so is Y.

B: Either X is innocent or Y is guilty.

Are A and B necessarly of the same type? (We recall that

two people from the island of knights and knaves are said to

be of the same type i they are either both knights or both

knaves. )

1 15.

On the island of knights and knaves, three inhabitants

A,B, C are being interviewed. A and B make the following

statements:

A: B is a knight.

B: I A is a knight, so is C.

Can i t be determined what any of A,B, C are?

B. LOVE A LOGIC

1 16.

Suppose the following two sttements are true:

( 1) I love Betty or I love Jane.

(2) If I love Betty ten I love Jane.

Does it necessarly follow that I love Betty? Does it neces

sarly follow that I love Jane?

104 OTHER MYSTERIS

1 17.

Suppose someone asks me, "Is it really true that if you love

Betty then you also love Jane?" I reply, "I it is true, then I

love Betty. "

Does it follow that I love Betty? Does it follow that I

love Jane?

1 18 .

This time we are given two girls, Eva and Margaret. Some

one asks me, "Is it really true that i you love Eva then you

also love Margaret?" I reply, "I it is true, then I love Eva,

and if I love Eva, then it i s true. "

Which girl do I necessarily love?

1 19.

This time we are given three girls, Sue, Marcia, and Dianne.

Suppose the following facts are given:

(1) I love at least one of the three girls.

(2) I I love Sue but not Dianne, then I also love Marcia.

(3) I either love both Dianne and Marcia or I love neither

one.

(4) I I love Dianne, then I also love Sue .

&

Which of the girs do I love?

Discussion. Aren' t logicians a bit silly? Shouldn' t I know

whether or not I love Betty, Jane, Eva, Margaret, Sue,

Marcia, Dianne, etc. , without having to sit down and figure

it out? Wouldn' t it be funny, if a wie asked her academic

husband, "Do you love me?" and he answered, "Just a

minute dear, " and sat dow for half an hour, calculating

with paper and pencil, and then replied, "Yes, it turns out

that I do"?

I am reminded of the allegedly true story of the

philosopher Leibniz who was once wondering whether to

LOGC PUZZLES 105

marry a certain lady. He sat down with paper and pencil and

made two lists, one list of advantages and one list of dis

advantages. The second list tured out to be longer, so he

decided not to marry her.

120 .

**This problem, though simple, is a bit surprising.
**

Suppose it is given that I am either a knight or a knave.

I make the following two statements:

(1) I love Linda.

(2) If I love Linda thel I love Kathy.

Am I a knight or a knave?

121 " A Variant of an Old Proverb.

An old proverb says: "A watched kettle never boils. " Now, I

happen to know that this is false; I once watched a kettle

over a hot stove, and sure enough it finally boiled. Now,

what about the following proverb?

"A watched kettle never boils unless you watch it. "

Stated more precisely, "A watched kettle never boils unless

it is watched. "

Is this true or false?

c. IS THERE GOLD ON THIS ISLAND?

The puzzles of the last two groups were concerned largely

with conditional statements-statements of the form "I P

is true, so is Q. " The puzzles of this group will be con

cerned largely with so-called biconditional statements

statements of the form "P is true i and only if Q is true. "

This statement means that i P i s true then s o i s Q, and i Q'

is true then so is P. It means, in other words, that if either

one of P, Q is true, so is the other. It also means thatP, Q are

106 OTHER MYSTERIS

either both true or both false. The statement "P i and only

if Q" is symbolically written: "P ¯ Q. "

The truth-table for P ¯ Q is this:

P Q p Q

T T T

T F F

F T F

F F T

The statement "P if and only if Q" is sometimes read "P i s

equivalent to Q" or "P and Q are equivalent. " We note the

following two facts:

F

l: Any proposition equivalent to a true proposition is

true.

F2: Any proposition equivalent to a false proposition

is false.

122. Is There Gold on This Island?

On a certain islan of knights and knaves, it is rumored that

there is gold buried on the island. You arrive on the island

and ask one of the natives, A, whether there is gold on this

island. He makes the following response: "There is gold on

this island i and only i I am a knight. "

Our problem has two parts:

(a) Can it be determined whether A is a knight or a knave?

(b) Can it be determined whether there is gold on the

island?

123.

Suppose, instead of A having volunteered this information,

you had asked A, "Is the statement that you are a knight

equivalent to the statement that there is gold on this

LOGIC PUZZLES 107

island?" Had he answered "Yes, " te problem would have

reduced to the preceding one. Suppose he had answered

"No. " Could you then tell whether or not there is gold on

the island?

124. How I Becae Rich.

This story is unfortunately not true. But it is an interesting

story, so I will tell it to you anyway.

I found out about three neighboring islands A,B, C. I

knew that there was gold buried on at least one of the three

islands, but I didn' t know which ones. Islands B and C were

uninhabited; island A was inhabited by knights and knaves,

and there was a possibility that there were some normals on

the island, but I didn't know whether there were any

normals or not.

I had the good forune to find the map of the islands

left by the famous, but capricious, Captain Marston-the

pirate who had buried the gold. The message, of course,

. was i n code. When decoded, i t was seen to consist of two

sentences. Here is the transcrption:

(1) THERE IS NO GOLD ON ISLAND A.

(2) Ü THERE ARE ANY NORMALS ON ISLAND A, THEN

THERE IS GOLD ON TWO OF THE ISLANDS.

Well, I rushed over to island A; I knew the natives there

knew all about the gold situation. The King of the island

guessed what I was up to and told me in no uncertain terms

that I would be allowed to ask only one question of any

native I chose at randOIll. I would have no way of knowing

whether the native was a knight, knave, or normal.

My problem was to think of a question such that upon

hearng the answer, I could then point to one of the islands

'

and be sure there was gold on that island.

What question should I ask?

1 08 OTHER MYSTERIS

125.

Another time I was visiting a df erent island of knights,

knaves, and normals. It was rumored that there was gold on

the island, and I wanted to find out whether there was. The

King of the island, who was a knight, graciously introduced

me to three of the natives, A,B, C, and told me that at most

one of them was normal. I was allowed to ask two yes-no

questions to whichever ones I wished.

Is there a way of finding out in two questions whether

there is gold on the island?

126. A Inferential Puzzle.

Suppose there are two neighboring islands each exclusively

inhabited by knights and knaves (there are no normals) .

You are told that on one of the two i slands there i s an even

number of knights and on the other one there is an odd

number of knights. You are also told that there is gold on the

island containing the even number of knights, but there is

no gold on the other i sland.

You pick ope of the two i slands at random and visit it.

All the inhabitants know how many knights and how many

knaves live on the island. You are interviewing three inhabi

tants, A,B, C, and they make the following statements:

A: There is an even number of knaves on this island.

B: Right now, there is an odd number of people on

the island.

C: I am a knight if and only if A and B are of the same

type .

. Assuming that you are neither a knight nor a knave and that

at the moment you are the only visitor on the i sland, is there

gold on the island or not?

LOGIC PUZZLES 109

SOLUTIONS

109-112 o

These four problems all embody the same basic idea, which

is that given any proposition P, if any person A on the island

of knights and knaves says, "If I' m a knight then P, " then

the speaker must be a knight and P must be true! This i s

quite surprising, and we can prove this i n two ways:

( 1) Suppose that A is a knight. Then the statement '.'If

A is a knight then P' must be a true statement (since

knights always tell the truth) . So A is a knight and i t i s true

that if A is a knight then P. From these two facts it follows

that P must be true. Thus the assumption that A is a knight

leads to P as a conclusion. Therefore (recalling Fact 4 of

Implication) , we have proved that i A is a knight then P.

But this is precisely what A asserted! Therefore A must be a

knight. And since we have j ust proved that i A is a knight

then P, then it follows that P must be true.

(2) An alternative way of seeing this is the following.

We recall that a false proposition impli es any proposition.

Therefore if A is !ot a knight, then the statement, "If A is a

knight then P" is automatically a true statement. Hence a

knave would never make such a statement. So if a person

who is either a knight or a knave makes such a statement, he

can only be a knight and P must be true.

Let us apply this principle to our puzzles. As for 109, if

we take P to be the proposition that B is a knight, then we

see that A must be a kight and his statement is true, hence

B is a knight. Thus the answer to 109 is that A and B are

both knights.

As for 1 1 0, we take for Pthe proposition that A will eat

his hat. We see that A must be a knight and that he must eat

his hat. (This proves, incidentally, that knights, though

doubtless virtuous and honorable, can sometmes be a bit

stupid! )

As for 1 1 1, the answer again is that A is a knight.

1 1 ° OTHER MYSTERIS

As for 1 12, the correct conclusion is that the author is

again spoofing! The problem is a paradox; no knight could

make such a statement, nor could a knave either.

1 13 .

A must be a knight and B must be a knave. To prove this, we

first must prove that only a knight can make a statement of

the form "If P, then I am a knave. " As we recall, a true pro

position is implied by any proposition; hence if the state

ment "I am a knave" is true, then so is the complete state

ment "If P, then I am a knave. " But if I am a knave, I could

never make that true statement. Hence if I say, "If P, then I

am a knave, " then I must be a knight.

Therefore A must be a knight. Hence also it is true

that if B is a knight then A is a knave (because A says it is

true) . Then B can't be a knight, since this would imply that

A is a knave, which he isn' t. ¯ Hence B is a knave.

1 14�

A, in effect, is saying that it is not the case that X is guilty

and Y is innocent. This is but another way of saying that

either X is innocent or Y is guilty, so A and B are really

saying the same thing in different words. Therefore the two

statements are either both true or both false, so A and B

must be of the same type.

1 15.

Suppose A is a knight. Then so is B (since A says he is) ,

Then B' s statement-HIf A is a knight, so is e"-is true.

But A is a knight (by assumption) , therefore C i s a knight

(under the assumption that A is) .

1 Any proposition which implies a false proposition must be false, since a true

proposition can never imply a false proposition. D the above case, the propo

sition that B is a knight implies the false proposition that A is a knave, hence it

must be false that B is Ü knight. This is another case of reducto ad absurdum.

LOGIC PUZZLES: SOLUTONS I I I

We have just shown that i A i s a knight, so is C.

2

Well,

B said just that, hence B is a knight. Then A' s statement

that B is a knight is true, so A is also a knight. And we have

shown that if A is a knight, so is C. Therefore C is a knight

too. Therefore all three are knights.

1 16 .

It doesn' t follow that I love Betty but it does follow that I

love Jane. To see that I love Jane, we reason as follows.

Either I love Bett or I don' t. If I don' t love Betty, then

by condition ( 1) , it must be Jane that I love {since it is given

that I love at least one of them} . On the other hand, i I love

Betty, then by condition (2) I must love Jane as well. So in

either case (whether I love Betty or whether I don' t) , it

follows that I love Jane.

Incidentally, any female reader who happens to have

the name "Betty" shouldn' t be worried; just because it

doesn' t follow from the given conditions that I love Betty, it

does not mean that it follows that I don't love Betty! It i s

quite possible that I love Betty too-maybe even more than

Jane.

1 17 0

This time it follows, not that I love Jane, but that I love

Betty. For suppose I don' t love Betty. Then the statement

"If I love Betty then I love Jane" must be a true statement

(since a false proposition implies any proposition) . But it i s

given that i that statement is true, then I must love Betty.

Therefore if I don' t love Betty, it follows that I do love

Betty, which is a contradiction. The only way out of the

contradiction i s that I do love Betty.

It cannot be determined whether or not I love Jane.

'e did this by assuming as a premise that A is a knight and drawing as a conclu

sion that C is a knight. By fact 4 of implication it follows that uA is a knight then C

is a knight.

1 1 2 OTHER MYSTERIS

1 18. �

It follows that I must love both girls. Let P be the state

ment, "I I love Eva then I also love Margaret. We are given:

(1) H P is tre, then I love Eva.

(2) H I love Eva, then P is tre.

We have seen in the solution of the preceding problem that

from ( 1) it follows that I love Eva. Therefore I do love Eva.

Therefore by (2) , Pmust be true-i. e. , it i s true that i I love

Eva I also love Margaret. But ! do love Eva. Therefore I also

love Margaret.

1 19.

I must love all three girls. There are several ways to prove

this; here is one:

By (3) I either love both Dianne and Marcia or I love

neither. Suppose I love neiter. Then by ( 1) I must love

Sue. Therefore I love Sue but not Dianne, and I don't love

Marcia. This contradicts statement (2) . Therefore it i s not

the case that I love neither Dianne nor Marcia, hence I love

them both. Since I love Dianne, then by (4) I also love Sue.

So I love all thee.

120.

I must be a knight. If I were a knave, then both ( 1) and (2)

would have to be false. Suppose (2) were false. Then I

would love Linda but not Kathy, hence I would love Linda.

This means that ( 1) would be true. So it is impossible that

( 1) and (2) are both false, hence I cannot be a knave.

121 . �

To say "P is false unless Q" is but another way of saying "I

P then Q. " (For example, to say, "I won' t go to the moves

LOGIC PUZZLES: SOLUTONS 1 13

unless you go wth me" is equivalent to saying, "If I go to

the movies, then you will go wth me. ") Thus the statement

"A watched kettle never boils unless it is watched" is but

another way of saying, "I a watched kettle boils, then it is

watched. " This, of course, is true, since a watched kettle is

certainly watched, whether it boils or not.

122.

It is not possible to determine whether the speaker is a

knight or a knave; nevertheless there must be gold on the

island.

For purposes of this and the other problems of this

section, let us establish once and for all the following basic

principle: I a speaker (who is either a knight or a knave)

makes the statement, "I am a knight i and only i P, " then P

must be true (regardless of whether the speaker is a kight

or a kave) .

To see this, let Kbe the proposition that the speaker is

a kght. The speaker says that K is equivalent to P.

Suppose the speaker is indeed a knight. Then K really is

equivalent to P, and also K is tue. Then P is equivalent to a

true statement, hence P must be true. On the other hand,

suppose the speaker is a knave. Then his statement is false,

so P is not equivalent to K. Also, since he is a knave, K is

false. Since P is not equivalent to the false propositon K,

then P must be true (for i it were false, then it would be

equivalent to K. Thus, whether the speaker is a knight or a

knave, P must be true.

It is of interest to compare this with a principle es

tablished in the last section: I a knight or knave says,

"I I'm a kight then P, " then we can conclude that he is

a knight and that P is true. But i a knight or knave says,

"I am a knight i and only i P, " then we can conclude that

P is true, but we cannot determine whether or not he is a

knight.

1 1 4 OTHER MYSTERIS

123.

Yes, you could; i this case there is no gold on the island.

. Let G be the statement that there is gold on the island,

and let K again be the statement that the speaker is a

kight. The speaker, by answering "No, " is asserting that G

is not equivalent to K. Well, suppose the speaker is a

knight. Then it really is the case that G is not equivalent to

K. Now, since he is a knight, K is true. Therefore G, since it

is not equivalent to the true proposition K, must be false.

On the other hand, suppose he is a knave. Then G actually

is equivalent to K (since the knave said they were not

equivalent) . But K is false (since the speaker is a knave) .

Thus G, being eqivalent to the false propositionI, must be

false. So, whether the speaker is a knight or a knave, his

"No" answer to the question indicates that G is false. So

there is no gold on the island.

Discussion. The last two problems j ointly imply a very

important principle well known to "knight-knave" experts.

As seen in the solutons of the last two problems, i P is any

statement at all, whose truth or falsit you wish to ascertain,

i a person known to be a knight or knave knows the answer

to P, then you can find out from him in just one question

whether P is trqe or false. You just ask him, "Is the

statement that you are a knight equivalent to the statement

that Pis true?" If he answers "Yes, " then you knowthatPis

true; if he answers "No, " then you know that P is false.

This prnciple will be used i the solution of the next

three problems; we shall refer to it as the fundamental

princile.

124.

We know in advance that there is no gold on island A, there

is gold on island B or island C, and if anyone on island

A is noral, then there is gold on both island B and

island C.

LOGIC PUZZLES: SOLUTIONS 1 1 5

Well, the question I asked the speaker was: "Is the

statement that you are a knight equivalent to the statement

that there is gold on island B?"

Suppose he answers "Yes. " I he is either a knight or a

knave, then there is gold on island B (by the fundamental

principle established in the solution of the preceding prob

lem) . I he is noral, then again there i s gold on islands B

and C, so there is certainly gold on island B. Thus a "Yes"

answers means that there is gold on island B.

Suppose he answers "No. " If he is a knight or a knave,

then there is no gold on island B (again by the fundamental

principle) . This means that there must be gold on island C.

On the other hand, if he is noral, then there is gold on both

island B and island C, so there is gold on island C. Thus a

"No" answer means that there is gold on island C.

125.

This problem is solved by two uses of the fundamental

principle (see solution of problem 123 for an explanation of

the fundamental prnciple) .

In one question it is possible to locate one of the three

who you know is definitely not normal. You do this by

asking A, "Is the statement that you are a kight equivalent

to the statement that B is normal?" Suppose he answers

"Yes. " Is A is either a knight or a knave, then B must be

normal (by the fundamental principle) . This means that C is

not normal. If A is not a knight or a knave, then he must be

normal, so again C can' t be normal. Thus a "Yes" answer

means that C is not normal.

Suppose A answers "No. " I he is a knight or a knave,

then B is not normal (again by the fundamental principle) . I

A is not a knight or a knave, then again B is not normal,

because A is. Thus a "No" answer means that B is not

normal,

So, if you get a "Yes" answer from A, then you pick C

to ask your second question; if you get a " No" answer, then

you pick B. Thus you know you are questioning someone

1 1 6 OTHER MYSTERIS

who is either a knight or a knave. You then ask him the same

question as in problem 1 22, namely, whether the statement

that he is a knight is equivalent to the statement that there

is gold on the island. A "Yes" answer means that there is

gold; a "No" answer means that there isn't.

126.

If you didn't know the fundamental principle, this problem

would be most bafing. But now that you know the funda

mental principle (see solution of problem 1 23) , the problem

is quite easy. I presume that you know that the sum of two

even whole numbers is an even number, and the sum of two

odd numbers is again even. This means that if you substract

an even number from an even number you will get an even

number, and i you subtract an odd number from an odd

number, you will again get ô even number. (For example,

1 2-8 =4; 1 3 -7 =6. )

From C' s statement i t follows ( by the fundamental

prnciple) that A and B really are of the same type, i . e. , they

are both knights or both knaves. Thus their statements are

either both true or both false. Suppose they are both tre.

Then by A' s statement, there are an even number of knaves

on the island. By B' s statement there are an odd number of

people including yourself. But you are neither a knight nor a

knave, and the only visitor on the island, hence there are an

even number of natives on the island. So, subtracting the

even number of knaves from the even number of knights

and knaves, you get an even number of knights. So in this

case, there is gold on the island. On the other hand,

suppose both statements are false. This means that there

are an odd number of knaves on the island and an odd

number of knights and knaves {an even number of people,

including yoursel} . Then again there must be an even

number of knights, so again there is gold on the island.

LOGIC PUZZLES: SOLUTIONS 1 1 7

ellini or Cellini?

This i s a sequel to the story of Portia' s caskets. We recall

that whenever Bellini fashioned a casket he always wrote a

true inscription on it, and whenever Cellini fashioned a

casket he always wrote a false inscription on it. Now, Bellini

and Cellini had sons who were also casket makers. The sons

took after their fathers; any son of Bellini wrote only true

statements on those caskets he fashioned, and any son of

Cellini wrote only false statements on his caskets.

Let it be understood that the Bellini and Cellini

families were the only casket makers of Renaissance Italy;

all caskets were made either by Bellini, Cellini, a son of

Bellini, or a son of Cellini.

It you should ever come across any of these caskets,

they are quite valuable-especially those made by Bellini

or Cellini.

A. WHOSE CASKET?

127 .

I once came across a casket which bore the followng

inscription:

THIS CASKET

WAS NOT MADE BY

ANY SON OF

BELLII

1 1 8 OTHER MYSTERIS

Who made this casket, Bellini, Cellini, a son of Bellini, or a

son of Cellini?

128.

Another time I came across a casket whose inscription

enabled me to deduce that the casket must have been made

by Cellini.

Can you figure out what the inscription could have

been?

129 .

The most valuable caskets of all are those bearing an in

scription such that one can deduce that the casket must have

been made by Bellini or Cellini, but one cannot deduce

which one. I once had the good fortune to come across such

a casket. Can you figure out what the inscription could have

been?

130. From the Sublime to the Ridiculous.

Suppose you came across a casket bearing the followng

inscription:

THIS CASKET

WAS MADE

BY ME

What would you conclude?

131. A Florentine Nobleman.

A certain Florentine nobleman gave very lavish entertain

ments, the high point of which was a game in which the prize

was a valuable jewel. This nobleman knew the story of

Portia' s caskets and designed his game accordingly. He had

three caskets, gold, silver, and lead, and inside one of them

was the j ewel. He explained to the company that each of the

BELLINI OR CELLII? 1 1 9

caskets was made by Bellini or Cellini {and not any of their

sons}o The frst person who could guess which casket

contained the jewel, and who could prove his guess correct,

would be awarded the j ewel. Here are the inscriptions:

Ü TH JEWEL

IS I THE SILVER

CASKET THEN THE

SIVER CASKET

WAS FASHIONED

BY BELLII

Ü THE JEWEL

IS I THIS

CASKET THEN

THE GOLD CASKET

WAS FASHIONED

BY CELLII

Which casket contains the jewel?

B. CASKET PAIRS

Lead

.

THE CASKET

WHICH REALLY

CONTAIS THE

JEWEL WAS

FASHIONED BY

CELLII

In some museums can be found pairs of caskets-one gold

and one silver-made and originally sold as sets. Actually,

the Bellini and Cellini families were the closest of friends

and would sometimes collaborate in making a pair. Of

course, only one person would make any one casket, but

given a pair, it sometimes happened that one person made

one of the caskets and another person made the other. The

two families had great fun designing pairs such that intelli

gent posterity could figure out, or partly figure out, who were

the makers. Given any set, there are sixteen possibilities:

the gold casket could have been made by Bellini, a son of

Bellini, Cellini, or a son of Cellini, and with each of these

four possibilities there were four possibilities for the maker

of the siver casket.

132

.

I once came across the followng pair:

120 OTHR MYSTERIS

BOTH CASKETS OF

THIS SET WERE MADE

BY MEMBERS OF THE

CELLINI FAMILY

NEITHER OF THESE

CASKETS WAS MADE

BY ANY SON OF BELLII

OR ANY SON OF CELLINI

Who made each casket?

133.

I once came across the following pair:

Gold �

�

IF THIS CASKET WAS

MADE BY ANY MEMBER

OF THE BELLII FAMILY

THEN THE SILVER CASKET

WAS MADE BY CELLINI

Who made each casket?

bilver

THE GOLD

CASKET WAS MADE

BY A SON OF

BELLINI

134.

Consider the following pair:

Gold bilver�

THE SILVER CASKET THE GOLD CASKET

WAS MADE BY A WAS NOT MADE BY

SON OF BELLINI A SON OF BELLII

Prove that at least one of them was made by Bellini.

135.

Consider the following pair:

BELLINI OR CELLII? 1 2 1

Gold

THE SILVER

CASKET WAS MADE

BY CELLII

büver �

THE GOLD CASKET

WAS NOT MADE

BY CELLINI

Prove that at least one of the caskets was made by a son of

Cellini.

136 .

Consider the following pair:

Gold

THE SILVER CASKET

WAS MADE BY A

SON OF BELLINI

ilver

**THE GOLD CASKET
**

WAS MADE BY A

SON OF CELLINI

Prove that at least one of the caskets was made by Bellini or

Cellini.

137.

The next adventure I had was particularly remarkable. I

came across a pair of caskets and I was interested to know

whether at least one of them was fashioned by Bellini. I read

the inscription on one of them, but I could not tell from it

whether at least one of them was made by Bellini. Then I

looked at the other inscription, which to my amazement was

the same as the first, and to my further amazement, I could

then tell that both caskets must have been made by Bellini.

Can you figure out what these inscriptions could have

been?

138�

Another time I came across a pair bearing identical inscrip

tions from which I was able to infer that both caskets were

1 22 OTHER MYSTERIS

made by Cellini, but from neither casket alone could I have

inferred that even one of them was made by Cellini.

Can you supply such an inscription?

139.

Another time I came across a pair bearing identical inscrip

tions from which I was able to infer that either they were

both made by Bellini or both made by Cellini, but I couldn' t

tell which. Also, from neither casket alone could I have

inferred this.

Can you supply such an inscription?

140.

The most valuable pair of caskets which one can find is one

satisfying the following conditions:

(1) From the inscriptions one can deduce that one of them

was made by Bellini and the other by Cellini, but one

cannot know which casket was made by whom.

(2) From neither casket alone can one deduce that the pair

is a Bellini-Cellini pair .

. I once had the good fortune to come across such a pair. (I

understand that it is the only such pair ever made. ) Can you

supply such a pair of inscriptions?

141. A Delightful Adventure.

Once in my bachelor days I was in Florence. I read an ad in

the papers: WANTD-A LOGICIA. (Fortunately it was printed

in English; I can' t read Italian.) Well, I went to the museum

which had placed the ad, and I was told that a logician was

needed to help straighten out a baffing mystery. Four

caskets had been found, two gold and two silver. It was

known that they formed two sets, but somehow the sets had

gotten mixed up, so it was not known which gold casket

BELLII OR CELLII? 1 23

went with which silver casket. I was shown the four caskets

and was soon able to straighten out the difficulty, for which

I received an excellent consultant fee. Not only that, but I

was also able to establish which casket was made by whom,

for which I received an additional bonus (consisting, among

other things, of an excellent case of Chianti) , and I also

received a kiss of gratitude from one of the most charming

ladi es in Florence. ¯

Here are the four caskets:

CasketA (Gold)

THE SILVER CASKET WAS

MADE BY A MEMBER OF

THE CELLINI F AMIL Y

Casket C (bilver)

Casket B (Gold)

EITHER THE SILVER

CASKET WAS MADE BY A

MEMBER OF THE CELLII

F AMIL Y OR BOTH CASKETS

WERE MADE BY BELLINI

Casket D (bilver)

THE GOLD CASKET WAS

MADE BY A MEMBER

THE GOLD CASKET

WAS MADE BY A

MEMBER OF THE

BELLINI F AMIL Y

OF THE BELLII FAMILY

AND AT LEAST ONE OF

THESE CASKETS WAS MADE BY

A SON OF BELLII OR OF CELLII

There are now two problems:

(a) Should A be paired with C or D?

(b) Who made each of the four caskets?

SOLUTIONS

127.

It was made by Bellini. If a son of Bellini had made the

casket, the statement would be false, which is impossible. If

I

Since Benvenuto Cellini was quite a braggart, why shouldn't I follow in his

footsteps?

1 2 4 OTHER MYSTERIS

Cellini or a son of Cellini had made the casket, the state

ment would be true, which is impossible. Therefore it was

made by Bellini.

128$

One inscription which would work is: This casket was made

by a son of Cellini.

129.

**"This casket was made by Bellini or a son of Cellini. "
**

130.

The statement is obviously true, hence the casket was made

by Bellini or a son of Bellini.

131.

Step One: Suppose the lead casket was made by Bellini.

Then the statement on it is true, hence the j ewel lies in a

Cellini casket, so it cannot be in the lead casket. On

the other hand, suppose the lead casket was made by

Cellini. Then the statement on i t is false, hence the j ewel

lies in a Bellini casket, hence is again not in the lead

casket. This proves that the jewel does not lie in the lead

casket.

Step Two: Next we know that the j ewel cannot lie in the silver

casket. If it did, we would get the following contradiction.

Suppose the j ewel is in the silver casket. First, sup

pose the gold casket was made by Bellini. Then the state

ment on it is true, and since the j ewel does lie in the

silver casket (by assumption) then the silver casket is a

Bellini. From this would follow that the gold casket was

made by Cellini. So i the gold is a Bellini, then it is a

Cellini.

BELLINI OR CELLII: SOLUTIONS 125

On the other hand, suppose the gold casket is a

Cellini. Then the statement on the gold casket is false, from

which follows that the silver casket is not û Bellini, hence is

a Cellini. Therefore the statement on the silver casket is

false, from which follows that the gold casket is a Bellini. So

i the gold casket is a Cellini, then it i s a Bellini, which is

impossible.

This proves that the j ewel cannot be in the silver

casket. Therefore it is in the gold casket.

132.

Clearly the statement on the gold casket cannot be true, or

we would have a contradiction. So the gold casket was made

by a member of the Cellini family. Since the statement is

false, then not both caskets were made by members of the

Cellini family, hence the silver casket was made by a

member of the Bellini family. Therefore the statement on

the silver casket is true, so neither casket was made by any

of the sons. Therefore the gold casket was made by Cellini

and the silver casket by Bellini.

133.

We recall that when an inhabitant of an island of knights

and knaves says, "If I am a knight then so-and-so is true, "

then the inhabitant must be a knight and the so-and- so

must be true. By a similar argument, we shall now show that

the statement on the gold casket is true.

Suppose that the gold casket was made by a member

of the Bellini family. Then the inscription on the gold casket

is true: "If the gold casket was made by a member of the

Bellini family, then the silver casket was made by Cellini. "

But the gold casket was made by a member of the Bellini

family (this is our assumption) , therefore the silver casket

was made by Cellini. We have thus proved that if the gold

casket was made by a member of the Bellini family then the

126 OTHER MYSTERIS

silver casket was made by Cellini.

2

In other words, we have

proved that te inscription on the gold casket is true.

Therefore the gold casket was in fact made by a member of

the Bellini family. This, together with the established fact

that i the gold casket was made by a member of the Bellini

family then the silver casket was made by Cellini, yields the

fact that the silver casket was made by Cellini. Therefore

the inscription on the silver casket is false, so the gold

casket was not made by a son of Bellini. But the gold casket

was made by a member of the Bellini family, therefore it

was made by Bellini. So the gold casket was made by Bellini

and the silver casket was made by Cellini.

134 .

Suppose the statement on the gold casket is true. Then the

silver casket was made by a son of Bellini, hence contains a

true statement. This means that the gold casket was not

made by a son of Bellini, but since the gold casket bears a

true statement, then it must have been made by Bellini.

Suppose the statement on the gold casket is false.

Then the silver casket was not made by a son of Bellini.

However, the statement on the silver casket must be true

(since the false statement on the gold casket could not have

been made by a son of Bellini) . So the silver casket was

made by Bellini.

In summary, i the statement on the gold casket is

true, then the gold casket was made by Bellini. I the

statement on the gold casket is false, then the silver casket

was made by Bellini.

135.

Suppose that the statement on the silver casket is true.

Since i t is a true statement, then the silver casket was made

2

Because the premise that the gold casket was made by a member of the Bellini

family led to the conclusion that the silver casket was made by Cellini. We have

again made use of fact 4 of implication (see last paragraph of the preamble of

Chapter 8).

BELLINI OR CELLII: SOLUTIONS 1 27

by a member of the Bellini family, hence the statement on

the gold casket-"the silver casket was made by Cellini"

must be false. But since the statement on the silver casket

is true (by assumption) , the gold casket was not made by

Cellini. Therefore the gold casket contains a false state

ment but was not made by Cellini, hence it was made by a

son of Cellini.

On the other hand, suppose the statement on the

silver casket is false. Then the gold casket was made by

Cellini, hence the statement on it is false, so the silver

casket was not made by Cellini. Thus the silver casket con

tains a false statement but was not made by Cellini, so it

was made by a son of Cellini.

136.

Suppose the gold casket inscription were true. Then the

silver inscription would also have to be tre, which would

mean that the gold inscription was false. This is a contra

diction, hence the gold inscription is false. This also means

that the silver casket was not made by a son of Bellini.

Therefore, i the silver inscrption is true, then the silver

casket was made by Bellini. If the silver inscription is false,

then the gold casket was not made by a son of Cellini, but

since the gold inscription is false, then the gold casket was

made by Cellini.

In summary, i the silver inscription is true, then the

silver casket was made by Bellini; if the silver inscription is

false, then the gold casket was made by Cellini. So either

the silver casket is a Bellini or the gold casket is a Cellini.

137.

There are many possible solutions to this and the next three

problems. One solution for this problem is that both caskets

contained the inscription: "Either both caskets were made

by Bellini or at least one was made by a member of the

Cellini family. "

128 OTHER MYSTERIES

No member of the Cellini family could have made

either of the caskets, because the statement would then be

true. So both caskets were made by members of the Bellini

family. The statements, therefore are true, so either both

caskets were made by Bellini or at least one was made by a

member of the Cellini family. The latter alterative is false,

so both caskets are Bellini' s.

138.

One solution is that both inscriptions read: "At least one of

these caskets was made by a son of Cellini. " If the state�

ments were true, then at least one of the caskets would have

been made by a son of Cellini, but it is not possible that a

son of Cellini makes a true statement. Therefore the state

ments are false, which means that neither casket was made

by a son of Cellini, hence Cellini made both caskets.

1395

An inscription which works is: "Either both caskets were

made by Bellini or at least one was made by a son of

Cellini. "

We wl prove that if the inscriptions are true, then

both caskets were made by Bellini, and i the inscriptions

are false, then both caskets were made by Cellini.

Suppose the inscriptions are true. Then it really is the

case that either both caskets were made by Bellini or that at

least one was made by a son of Cellini. The latter alterna

tive is impossible (since a son of Cellini cannot write a true

inscription) , hence both caskets must have been made by

Bellini.

Suppose the inscriptions are false. Then both altera

tives of the disj unction are false-in particular the second

alternative (that at least one was made by a son of Cellini) is

false, which means that neither casket was made by a son of

Cellini. Yet both inscriptions are false, so they were made

by Cellini.

BELLINI OR CELLII: SOLUTIONS 1 29

1405

One solution is the following:

Gold: "These caskets were made by Bellini and Cellini i

and only if the silver casket was made by a member of

the Cellini family. "

Silver: "The gold casket was made by a member of the

Cellini family. "

We let P be the proposition that the caskets were made by

Bellini and Cellini, and Q may be the proposition that the

silver casket was made by a member of the Cellini family.

The inscription on the gold casket says that P is equivalent

to Q; the inscription on the silver casket says that the

inscription on the gold casket was made by a liar, which in

effect says that the inscription on the gold casket is false.

This means that one of the two inscriptions i s true and the

other one is false.

Suppose the inscription on the gold casket is true.

Then (since we have shown that one inscription is true and

one is false) , the inscription on the silver casket must be

false, hence i t was made by a member of the Cellini family,

so Q is true. Also, since the inscription on the gold casket i s

true, then P really is equivalent to Q. Then (since Q is true)

P must be true.

Suppose the inscription on the gold casket is false.

Then the inscription on the silver casket is true, hence it

was not made by any Cellini, so Q must be false, and also P

is not equivalent to Q. Hence again P is true.

We see that in either case, P must be true, that is, one

of the caskets was made by Bellini and the other by Cellini.

141.

Casket A must be paired with casket D, for i it were paired

with casket C we would get the following contradiction.

Suppose A were paired with C. Suppose the inscrip

tion on A is true. Then the inscription on C is false. This

1 30 OTHER MYSTERIES

means that the inscription on A is false. This is a contra

diction. On the other hand, suppose the inscription on A is

false. Then the inscription on C is true. This means that the

inscription on A is true-again a contradiction. Therefore A

is not paired with C. This solves the first half of the

problem.

Now let us consider the B-C pair. Suppose the state

ment on C is false. Then B was made by a member of the

Cellini family, hence contains a false statement. This means

that neither alternative of the statement is true, hence the

first alternative is false, which means that C was made by a

member of the Bellini family. So, if the statement on C is

false then C was made by a member of the Bellini family,

which is impossible. Hence the statement on C is true.

Therefore the statement on B is also true (because it says

on C that B was made by a member of the Bellini family) .

Now, the first alternative of the statement on B cannot be

true, therefore the second is. Thus caskets B and C were

both made by Bellini.

Now let us consider the A-D pair. Suppose the in

scription on A is false. Then D was made by a member of

the Bellini family and hence the inscription on it is true.

This would mean that A was made by a member of the

Bellini family, so we would get a contradiction. Therefore

the inscription on A is true. This further implies that the

inscription on D is false. Hence at least one of the alter

natives of the statement is false. The first alternative is true

(since the statement on A is true) , hence the second altera

tive is false. This means that neither casket was made by a

son of Bellini or Cellini. Therefore A was made by Bellini

and D was made by Cellini.

BELLINI OR CELLINI: SOLUTIONS 1 3 1

•

Î

aal

A. IN QUEST OF THE ABSOLUTE

I read, in some philosophical textbook or other, "The true

philosopher is the little girl of nine who was looking out of a

window and suddenly tured to her mother and said, ' But

mother, what puzzles me is how come there is anything at

all?' "

This problem has bafed many a philosopher; some

philosophers have regarded this as the fundamental philo

sophical problem. They put it in the form: "Why is there

something instead of nothing?"

When you stop to think of it, it is really a good ques

tion, isn' t it? Actually, why is there something instead of

nothing? Well, once upon a time there was a certain philo

sopher who decided to make it the main project of his life to

find out why there is something instead of nothing. First he

read all the books on philosophy, but none of them could

tell him the real reason why there is something instead of

nothing. Next, he tured to theology. He asked all the

learned rabbis, priests, bishops, ministers, and other reli

gious leaders, but none of them could satisfactorily explain

why there is something instead of nothing. Then he turned

to Easter philosophy; he went wandering around for twelve

years in India and Tibet, interviewing various gurus, but

THE ISLAD OF BA 135

none of them knew why there is something instead of

nothing. Then he spent another twelve years in China and

Japan interviewing various Taoist hermits and Zen-masters

Finally he met one sage who was on his deathbed and who

said:

"N O, my son, I myself do not know why there is some

thing instead of nothing. The only place on this planet where

the answer is known is on the island of Baal. One of the high

priests of the Temple of Baal knows the true answer. "

"And where is the island of Baal?" asked the philo

sopher eagerly.

"Ah! " was the reply, "I don' t know that either. In fact, I

have never know anyone who has actually found his way to

Baal. All I know about is the location of a certain uncharted

cluster of islands on one of which is a map and a complete set

of directions to the island of Baal. I do not know on which

island of the cluster the map can be found; all I know is that

it is on one of them, and the name of that one is "Maya. "

However, all these islands are inhabited exclusively by

knights, who always tell the truth, and knaves, who always

lie. Hence one has to be very cagey! "

This was the most promising news the philosopher had

heard in twenty-four years! Well, he found his way without

difficulty to this cluster and systematically tried one island

after another, hoping to find out which one was the island of

Maya.

142 0 The First Island.

On the first island he tried, he met two natives A, B, who

made the following sttements:

A: B is a knight and this is the island of Maya.

B: A is a knave and this is the island of Maya.

Is this the island of Maya?

1 36 WEIRD TALES

143 0 The Second Island.

On this island, two natives A, B, made the followng

statements:

A: We are both knaves, and this is the island of

Maya.

B: That is tre.

Is this the island of Maya?

144 ø The Third Island.

On this island, A and B said:

A: At least one of us is a knave, and this is the island

of Maya.

B: That is true.

Is this the island of Maya?

145. The Fourth Island.

On this island, two natives A, B said:

A: Both of us are knaves, and this i s the island of

Maya.

B: At least one of us is a knave, and this is not the

island of Maya.

Is this the island of Maya?

146 ø The Fifth Island.

Two of the natives here, A and B, said:

A: Both of us are knaves, and this i s the island of

Maya.

THE ISLAD OF BAAL 137

B: At least one of us is a knight, and this is not the

island of Maya.

Is this the island of Maya?

· 1470 The Sixth Island.

On this island, two of the natives A, B made the following

statements:

A: Either B is a knight, or this is the island of Maya.

B: Either A is a knave, or this is the island of Maya.

Is this the island of Maya?

148. The Map to Baal.

Well, our philosopher found the island of Maya. However,

the task of finding the map and directions to Baal was not as

easy as he had anticipated. He had to see the High Prest of

Maya. The priest led him into a room in which three maps

X,Y, Z were lying on a table. The priest explained that only

one of the maps was the true map to Baal; the other two

maps each led to an island of demons, and i one landed on

an island of demons, he would be instantly demolished. The

philosopher had to choose one of the three maps.

Well, i n the room were five witch doctors, A, B, C, D,

and E. Each witch doctor was either a knight or a knave.

They gave him the following bits of advice:

A: X is the correct map.

B: Y is the correct map.

C: A and B are not both knaves.

D: Either A is a knave or B i s a knight.

. E: Either I am a knave or C and D are of the same

type (both knights or both knaves) .

Which of the maps X,Y, Z is the correct one?

138 WID TAES

B. THE ISLAD OF BA

Of all the islands of knights and knaves, the island of Baal is

the weirdest and most remarkable. This island is inhabited

exclusively by humans and monkeys. The monkeys are as

tall as the humans, and speak as fuently. Every monkey, as

well as every human, is either a knight or a knave.

In the dead center of this island stands the Temple of

Baal, one of the most remarkable temples in the entire

universe. The high priests are metaphysicians, and in the

Inner Sanctum of the temple can be found a priest who is

rumored to know the answer to the ultimate mystery of the

universe: why there is something instead of nothing.

Aspirants to the Sacred Knowledge are allowed to

visit the Inner Sanctum, provided that they prove them

selves worthy by passing three series of tests. I leared all

these secrets, incidentally, by stealth: I had to enter the

temple disguised as a monkey. I did this at great personal

risk. Had I been caught, the penalty would have been un

imaginabl e. Instead of merely annihilating me, the priests

would have changed the very laws of the universe in such a

way that I could never have been bor!

Well, our philosopher chose the right map and arrived

safely on the island of Baal and agreed to try the tests. The

first series took place on three consecutive days in a huge

room called the Outer Sanctum. In the center of the room a

cowled figure was seated on a golden throne. He was either

a human or a monkey, and also a knight or a knave. He

uttered a sacred sentence, and from this sentence the

philosopher had to deduce exactly what he was-whether a

knight or a knave, and whether a human or a monkey.

149. The First Test.

The speaker said, "I am either a knave or a monkey. "

Exactly what is he?

TE ISLAD OF BAAL 1 39

150 ® The Second Test.

The speaker said, "I am a knave and a monkey. "

Exactly what is he?

· 151 0 The Third Test.

The speaker said, "I am not both a monkey and a knight. "

What is he?

The philosopher passed these three tests, so he was al·

lowed to try the second series, which also took place on

three consecutive days and in another great room, known as

the Middle Sanctum. In this room there were two cowled

figures seated on platinum thrones. They uttered sacred

sentences, and the philosopher was then to give a complete

description of each speaker. We will call the speakers A and

B.

152 0 The Fourth Test.

A: At least one of us is a monkey.

B: At least one of us is a knave.

What are A and B?

153. The Fifth Test.

**A: Both of us are monkeys.
**

B: Both of us are knaves.

What are A and B?

154. The Sixth Test.

A: B is a knave and a monkey. I am human.

B: A is a knight.

1 40 WEIRD TALES

What are A and B?

The philosopher passed the second series of tests and took

the third series, which consisted of only one test, but it was

a complicated one.

155.

There are four doors X,Y, Z,W leading out of the Middle

Sanctum. At least one of them leads to the Inner Sanctum.

If you enter a wrong door, you will be devoured by a ferce

dragon.

Well, there were eight priests A, B, C, D, E, F, G,H, each

of whom i s either a knight or a knave. They made the

following statements to the philosopher:

A: X is a good door.

B: At least one of the doors Y, Z is good.

e: A and B are both kights.

D: X and Y are both good doors.

E: X and Z are both good doors.

F: Either D or E i s a knight.

G: I C is a knight, so is F.

H: I G and I are both knights, so is A.

Which door should the philosopher choose?

156 0 In the Inner Sanctum!

The philosopher chose the correct door and safely entered

the Inner Sanctum. Seated on two diamond thrones were

the two greatest priests in the entire universe! It is possible

that at least one of them knew the answer to the Great

Question: "Why is there something instead of nothing?"

Of course, each of the two great priests was either U

knight or a knave. (Whether they were human or monkey is

not relevant. ) So we do not know of either whether he i s a

knight or a knave, or whether he knows the answer to the

THE ISLAND OF BAAL 1 41

Great Question. The two priests made the following

statements:

First Priest / I am a knave, and I don't know why

there is something instead of nothing.

Second Priest / I am a knight, and I don't know why

there is something instead of nothing.

Did either of the priests really know why there is something

instead of nothing?

157" The Answer!

And now you are about to find out the true answer to the

Great Question of why there is something instead of

nothing!

Well, one of the two priests, who in fact did know the

answer to the Great Question, when asked by the philoso

pher, "Why is there something instead of nothing?" gave

the following response:

"There is something instead of nothing."

What drastic conclusion follows from all this?

SOLUTIONS

142,

Suppose B is a knight. Then this is the island of Maya and

also A is a knave. Hence A's,statement is false, so it is not

true that B is a knight and this is the island of Maya. How

ever B is a knight by assumption. Hence the first part of the

statement is true; therefore the second part of the state

ment is false, hence this is not the island of Maya. So i B is

a knight, it follows that this island both is and is not the

island of Maya. Therefore B must be a knave.

Since B is a knave, it follows that A is also a knave

(because A claims that B is a knight). Since B is a knave, his

142 WEIRD TALES

statement is false, therefore it is not true that A is a knave

and this is the island of Maya. But the first part of the state

ment is true (since A is a knave) , therefore the second part

must be false, hence this is not the island of Maya.

Obviously A is a knave (a knight could never make A' s

statement) . Since B agrees with A, then B is also a knave.

Since A' s statement is false, then it is not true that ( 1) they

are both knaves and (2) this is the island of Maya. However,

( 1) is true, so (2) must be false. Therefore this island is not

the island of Maya.

144 .

Since B agrees with A, then they are either both knights or

both knaves. If they were both knights then it would not be

the case that at least one of them is a knave, hence A' s

statement would be false, which is impossible since A

would be a knight. Therefore they are both knaves. This

means that A' s statement is false. But the first clause of A' s

statement must be true (they are both knaves so at least one

of them is a knave) , hence the second clause must be false.

Therefore this is not the island of Maya.

145.

A is certainly a knave, since a knight couldn't make that

statement. If B is a knight, then, by his statement, this is not

the island of Maya. If B is a knave, then the first clause of

A' s statement is true; but A' s statement is false, since A is a

knave, hence the second clause must be false. So again, this

is not the island of Maya.

Again, A must be a knave, B can be either a knight or a

knave, but in either case, this is not the island of Maya.

THE ISLAND OF BAAL: SOLUTIONS 143

147.

If A were a knave; then both clauses of his disjunctive state

ment would be false, which would mean that B was a knave.

, This would mean that both clauses of B' s disjunctive state-

ment would be false, so A would be a kight. This is a contra

diction; terefore A is a knight. Therefore his statement is

true, hence either B is a knight or this is the island of Maya.

II the second alterative is tue, then, of course, this is the

island of Maya. Suppose the first alterative is true, that is,

suppose B is a knight. Then B' s statement is true: "A is a

knave, or this is the island of Maya. " But A is not a knave,

so the first alternative is false. Therefore the second alter

native is true, so this is the island of Maya.

To repeat part of this argument, we have seen that

either B is a knight or this is te island of Maya. But also, i

B is a knight, ten again this is the island of Maya. There

fore this is te island of Maya.

So we have found te island of Maya-at last!

148.

I E were a knave, then it would be true that eiter E is U

knave or C and D are of the same type. This would mean

that a knave made a true statement, which is impossible.

Therefore E is a knight. Hence his statement is tue, so

either he is a knave or C and D are of the same type. But he

is not a knave, hence C and D are of the same type.

Suppose C were a knave. Then A and B would both be

knaves. Then D' s statement would be true, hence D would

be a knight. Thus C would be a knave and D a knight, which

is contrary to the fact that C and D are of the same type.

Therefore C must be a knight; hence D is also a knight.

Since C is a knight, then A and B are not both knaves, hence

either X or Y is the correct map. Suppose X were the

corect map. Then A is a knight and B is a knave, contrar

to D' s true statement that either A is a knave or B is a

kight. So X cannot be the correct map, so the correct map

must be Y.

144 WID TAES

149@

If the speaker were a knave, then he would be either a knave

or a monkey, hence his statement would be true, contrary to

the fact that he is a knave. Therefore he is a knight. This

means his statement is true, hence he is either a knave or a

monkey. He is not a knave, therefore he is a monkey. Thus

he is a monkey knight.

150 .

Clearly the speaker is not a knight, hence he is a knave and

his statement is false. Therefore he is either a knight or a

human. He is not a knight, therefore he is human. Hence he

i s a human knave.

1 51 P

Suppose the speaker were a knave. Then it would be true

that he i s not both a monkey and a knight, hence his state

ment would be true, and we would have a knave making a

true statement. Therefore the speaker i s a knight. There

fore it i s true that he i s not both a monkey and a knight. I he

were a monkey, then he would be both a monkey and a

knight. Hence he is human. So he is a human knight.

152.

B can' t be a knave, or his statement would be true. There

fore B is a knight. Hence his statement i s true, so A must be

a knave. Then A' s sttement is false, so they are both

human. Therefore A is a human knave and B is a human

knight.

153.

B must be a knave, because a knight could not make that

statement. Therefore not both A and B are knaves, so A is a

TE ISLAND OF BAAL: SOLUTIONS 145

knight. Hence A' s statement is true, so both of them are

monkeys. Hence. A is a monkey knight and B is a monkey

knave.

154.

Suppose B were a knight. Then A would be a knight (since

B says he is) , hence B would have to be a knave and a

monkey, which is a contradiction. Therefore B is a knave.

Hence, by B' s statement, A is also a knave. Since A' s first

statement is false, B is not a knave and a monkey. But B is a

knave, so it must be false that B is a monkey. So B is a

human knave. From A' s second statement it follows that A

is a monkey. So A is a monkey knave.

155. �

We will first show that G is a knight. To do this, it suffices to

show that. his statement is true. So we must show that if C is

a knight, so is F. We do this by assuming that C is a knight,

and then showing that F is also a knight.

Well, suppose C is a knight. Then A and B are both

knights. Hence X is a good door and either Y or Z is good.

Case One: Y is good. Then X,Y are both good. In this case,

D is a knight.

Case To: Z is good. Then X, Z are both good. In this case,

E is a knight.

Hence either D or E must be a knight. Therefore F' s state

ment is true, so F is a knight.

Our assumption that C is a knight leads to the conclu

sion that F is a knight. Therefore it is true that if C i s a

knight, so is F. This is what G said, therefore G is a knight.

Now we will prove that H' s statement is true. H said

that i G and H are both knights, so is A. Suppose that H is a

knight. Then G and H are both knights. Also it is true that i

1 46 WEIRD TALES

G and H are both knights, so is A (because H said it was,

and we are assuming that H is a knight) . Therefore i H is û

knight, then (1) G and H are both knights; (2) i G and H are

both knights, so is A. From ( 1) and (2) it follows that A is a

knight. So if H is a knight, so is A. This is what H said, so H

must be a knight. Hence his statement is true, and since G

and H are both knights, A is a knight.

Now we know that A is a knight. Hence X really is a

good door. So the philosopher should choose door X.

156 .

The first pri est couldn't be a knight; he must be a knave.

Hence his statement is false, which means that it is not true

that he is a knave and that he doesn' t know the answer to

the Great Question. But he is a knave, so the first part of the

statement is true. Therefore, the second part of the state

ment must be false, so he does know the answer. Therefore

the first priest is both a knave and knows the answer.

As for the second priest, he is indeterminate; he is

either a knight who doesn' t know the answer or a knave. At

any rate (and this is crucial for the next problem! ) if he does

know the answer, then he is a knave.

157 .

We have seen that the first priest knows the answer to the

question and is a knave, and the second priest, i he knows

the answer, i s a knave. We are given that the one who said

"There is something instead of nothing" knew the answer.

Therefore the one who said that is a knave, hence the state

ment "There is something instead of nothing" must be

false! This means that nothing exists!

So, it appears that the answer to the philosopher' s

lifelong quest is that nothing really exists after all. How

ever, there is one thing wrong; i nothing exists, then how

come there was the priest who made the statement?

What properly follows, therefore, is that the island of

THE ISLAND OF BAAL: SOLUTIONS 147

Baal, as I have described it, cannot exi st. It' s not merely the

case that it doesn't exst (which was highly probable from

the beginning of the story) , but that it is logically certain

that it cannot exist. For if it existed, and my story were true,

,

then (as I have shown) ' it would logically follow that nothing

exists, and hence the island of Baal wouldn' t exist. This is û

contradiction, hence the island of Baal cannot exist.

The curious thing is that up until the last story (prob

lem 1 57) , everything I told you, no matter how implausible

it may have seemed, was logically possibl e. But when I told

you the last story, that was the straw that broke the camel ' s

back!

1 48 WIRD TALES

The

0 Island o

f

Zombies

A. "BAL" AD "DA"

On a certain island near Haiti, half the inhabitants have

been bewitched by voodoo magic and tured into zombies.

The zombies of this island do not behave according to the

conventional concept: they are not silent or deathlike

they move about and talk in as lively a fashion as do the

humans. It' s just that the zombies of this island always lie

and the humans of this island always tell the truth.

So far, this sounds like another knight-knave situation

in a diferent dress, doesn' t it? But it isn't! The situation is

enormously complicated by the fact that although all the

natives understand English perfectly, an ancient taboo of

the island forbids them ever to use non-native words in

their speech. Hence whenever you ask them a yes-no

question, they reply "Bal" or "Da" -one of which means

yes and the other no. The trouble is that we do not know

which of "Bal" or "Da" means yes and which means no.

158.

I once met a native of this island and asked him, "Does ' Bal'

mean yes?

"

He replied, "Bal. "

THE ISLAD OF ZOMBIS 1 49

(a) Is it possible to infer what "Bal" means?

(b) Is it possible to infer whether he is a human or a

zombie?

159.

If you meet a native on this island, is it possible in only one

question to find out what "Bal" means? (Remember, he will

answer "Bal" or "Da". )

160.

Suppose you are not interested in what "Bal" means, but

only in whether the speaker is a zombie. How can you find

this out in only one question? (Again, he will answer "Bal"

or "Da. ")

161 " Making the Medicine Man say "Bal . "

You are on this same island and wsh to mary the King' s

daughter. The King wants his daughter to marry only

someone who is very intelligent, hence you have to pass a

test.

The test is that you may ask the medicine man any one

question you like. If he answers "Bal" then you may marry

the king' s daughter; if he answers "Da" then you may not.

The problem is to design a question such that regard

less of whether the medicine man is a human or a zombie,

and regardless of whether "Bal" means yes or no, he will

have to answer "Bal . "

1628

Here is a more difficult one. There is a rumor that there i s

gold on this island. You arrive on the island, and before you

start excavating, you want to know whether there really i s

gold or not. The natives all know whether or not there i s.

150 WIRD TALES

How, in one question to any one of the natives, can you find

out? Remember, he will answer "Bal" or "Da, " and from his

answer you must know whether there is gold, regardless of

what "Bal" and "Da" really mean.

B. ENTER INSPECTOR CRAIG

163" A Tria.

On a neighboring island of humans and zombies "Bal" and

"Da" are again the native words for yes and no, but not

necessarily in that order. Some of the natives answer ques

tions with "Bal" and "Da, " but others have broken away

from the taboo and answer wth the English words "Yes"

and "No. "

For some odd reason, given any family on this island,

all members are of the same type. In particular, given any

pair of brothers, they are either both human or both

zombies.

A native was suspected of high treason. The case was

so important, that Inspector Craig had to be called over

from London. The three key witnesses were A, B, and C

all natives of the island. The followng transcrpt is from the

court records; Inspector Craig did the questioning.

Question (to A) / Is the defendant innocent?

A's Answer / Bal .

Question (to B) / What does "Bal" mean?

B's Answer / "Bal" means yes.

Question (to C) / Are A and B brothers?

C's Answer / No.

Second Question to C / Is the defendant innocent?

C's Answer / Yes.

Is the defendant innocent or guilty?

THE ISLAD OF ZOMBIES 1 5 1

164.

In the above problem, can it be deterined whether A and

B are of the same type?

165 0 Semi-zombies.

Mter the trial, Inspector Craig paid a visit to a curious

neighboring island: Some of the natives were human, some

were zombies, and the others were what is known as semi

zombies. These semi-zombies have been subj ected to voo

doo magic, but the magic spells were only partially success

ful. As a result, the semi-zombies sometimes lie and some

times tell the truth. Again the native words for yes and no

are "Bal" and "Da" (though not necessarily respectively) .

The natives sometimes answer yes-no questions in English

and sometmes with "Bal" and "Da. "

Inspector Craig met one of the natives and asked him

the following question: "When someone asks you whether

' Bal' means yes, and you answer in your native tongue, do

you answer ' Bal' T

The native answered, but Inspector Craig failed to

record the answer, nor did he record whether it was given in

English or in the native tongue. All Inspector Craig did

record was that from te answer, he was able to deduce

whether the speaker was a human, a zombie, or a semi

zombie.

What answer did the speaker give, and was it in

English or in his native tongue?

166. Which?

Another time on the same island, Inspector Craig asked

another native the following question: "When someone

asks you whether two plus two equals four, and you answer

in your native tongue, do you answer ' Bal'?"

Again, Inspector Craig did not record whether the

answer was "Bal, " "Da, " "Yes, " or "No, " but again he

152 WEIRD TAES

could deduce whether the speaker was a human, a zombie,

or a semi-zombie.

What answer did he get?

SOLUTIONS

158.

It is not possible to tell what "Bal" means, but we can tell

that the speaker must have been human.

Suppose "Bal" means yes. Then "Bal" is the truthful

answer to the question whether "Bal" means yes. So in thi s

case, the speaker was human.

Suppose "Bal" means no. Then "No" is the truthful

English answer to the question whether "Bal" means yes,

therefore "Bal" is the truthful native answer to the ques

tion. So again, the speaker is human. So, regardless of

whether "Bal" means yes or no, the speaker is human.

159.

**All you have to ask him is whether he is human. All natives
**

of this island claim to be human, so both a human and a

zombie will answer affirmatively. So i he answers "Bal, "

then "Bal" means yes; if he answers "Da, " then "Da"

means yes (and "Bal" means no) .

160. �

The question of problem 1 58 does the j ob; j ust ask him if

"Bal" means yes. If "Bal" does mean yes, then "Bal" is the

correct answer to the question, so a human will say "Bal"

and a zombie will say "Da. " I "Bal" does not mean yes,

then again "Bal" is the correct answer to the question, so

again a human will say "Bal" and a zombie will say "Da. "

THE ISLAND OF ZOMBIES: SOLUTIONS 1 53

161�

There are several ways to do this. One way is to ask the

medicine man whether "Bal" is the true answer to the

question of whether he is human. We can prove that he

must answer "Bal. " To simplify the exposition a bit, let H

be the question, "Are you human?" Remember, you are not

asking him whether H is true or false, but whether "Bal" is

the correct answer to H.

Case One: He is human. I "Bal" means yes, then "Bal" is

the corect answer to H, and since he is human, he wll

truthully tell you that it is, hence he will say " Bal . " If " Bal"

means no, then "Bal" is not the correct answer to H, hence

he will truthfully tell you it isn' t, so he will say "Bal "

(meaning no) . Thus a human will answer "Bal" regardless

of whether "Bal" means yes or no.

Case Two: He is a zombie. I "Bal" means yes then "Bal" is

not the correct answer to H, but since he is a zombie, he will

lie and say that it is the correct answer, so he will say "Bal"

(meaning "Yes, it i s the correct answer, " which of course is

a lie) . If "Bal" means no, then "Bal" is the correct answer to

H, hence he will lie and say it is not the correct answer, so he

will say "Bal" (meaning no) . So a zombie will say "Bal"

regardless of whether "Bal" means yes or no.

There are other questions which would also do the j ob.

Here are some:

( 1) Is i t the case that either you are human and "Bal"

means yes, or that you are a zombie and '. ' Bal" means

no?

(2) Is it the case that you are human if and only i "Bal"

means yes?

162.

Again, there are several ways to do this. One way is to ask,

"If someone asked you whether there is gold on this island,

154 WEIRD TAES

would you answer ' Bal' ?" As we will show, i there is gold on

the island, then he will answer "Bal, " and if there isn' t, then

he wn answer "Da, " regardless of whether he is human or a

zombie and regardless of what "Bal" and "Da" really

mean.

We let G be the question, "Is there gold on this island?

Case One: He is human and ''al' ' means yes. Suppose

there is gold on the island. Then he would a.nswer "Bal" to

the question G. Being human, he would truthfully tell you

that he would answer "Bal, " so he answers "Bal" to your

question. Suppose there is no gold on the island. Then he

wouldn' t answer "Bal" to question G, and being human he

would tell you that he wouldn' t, so he answered "Da" to

your question.

Case Two: He is a zombie and ''al ' ' means yes. Suppose

there is gold on the island. Then again "Bal" is the tuthful

answer to G, so he, being a zombie, wouldn' t answer "Bal"

to G. But then he would lie to you and tell you that he would

answer "Bal" to G. So his answer to you is "Bal. " Suppose

there is no gold on the island. Then "Bal" is a false answer

to G, so he would in fact give that answer to G. But then he

would lie to you and say that he wouldn' t say "Bal, " so he

answers your question with "Da. "

Case Three: He i s human and ''al ' ' means no. Suppose

there is gold on the i sland. Then "Bal" is the false answer to

G, so a human wouldn' t make it. Then he would truthfully

tell you that he wouldn' t say "Bal, " so he answers your

question with "Bal. " I there isn't gold on the island, then

"Bal" is the truthful answer to G, hence is the answer the

human would actually give to G. So he answers your ques

tion with "Da" (meaning "Yes, I would answer ' Bal' to

G") .

Case Four: He is a zombie and "Bal" means no. Suppose

there is gold on the island. Then he would actually answer

THE ISLAND OF ZOMBIS: SOLUTIONS 1 55

"Bal" t G, but he would tell you that he wouldn't, so he will

answer your question with "Bal. " Suppose there isn't gold

on the island. Then he would actually answer "Da" to G; he

wouldn' t answer "Bal" to G. But he would tell you that he

would. Hence he answers "Da" to your question.

In summary, if there is gold on the island, then in each

of the four cases you will get "Bal" for an answer; if there is

no gold, you will get "Da" for an answer.

Another question that would work is this: "Is it the case

that you are human if and only if ' Bal' is the true answer to

whether there is gold on this island?"

163.

I shall first prove that C cannot be a zombie. Well, suppose

he were. Then A and B must be brothers, hence both

human or both zombies. Suppose they are both human.

Then "Bal" really does mean yes, hence A in effect an

swered yes to whether the defendant is innocent, so the

defendant is innocent. Suppose A,B are both zombies.

Then "Bal" really means no, and since A i s a zombie and

answered no to whether the defendant is innocent, then the

defendant is innocent. So if C is a zombie then the defen

dant is innocent (regardless of whether A,B are both human

or both zombies) . On the other hand, i C is a zombie then

the defendant must be guilty, since C says he is innocent.

Ths is a contradicton; therefore C can't be a zombie, so he

is human. And since C says the defendant is innocent, then

the defendant really is innocent.

164.

Since C is human, then A, B are not brothers. This, of

course, does not necessarily mean that they are of different

tyes; they may be of the same type even though they are

not brothers. As a matter of fact, they mut be of the same

type, for if they were of diferent types, then the defendant

156 WEIRD TAES

would have to be guilty. The reader should easily be able t

prove this himself.

165.

Of all the four possible answers-"Bal, " "Da, " "Yes, "

"No"-the only one which neither a human nor a zombie

could make is "No. " More specifically, if the speaker were

either one, had he answered in English, his . answer would

have to be "Yes"; if he answered in his native tongue, then

if "Bal" means yes, he would have answered "Bal " (regard

less of whether he is a human or a zombie) , and i "Bal"

means no, he would have answered "Da. " (I leave it to the

reader to prove these facts. ) Therefore if Craig had gotten

any answer but "No, " he couldn' t have know what the

speaker was. But he did know, hence he got the answer

"No, " and the speaker was a semi-zombie.

166.

Again, the speaker must be a semi-zombie, and the only

way Craig could know what the speaker was is by getting

the answer "Da. " Had the speaker answered in English,

Craig could not have kown, for both a human and a zombie

would have answered "Yes" if "Bal " means yes, and "no" i

"Bal" means no. Had the speaker answered "Bal , " he could

have been either a human, a zombie or a semi- zombie.

THE ISLAND OF ZOMBIS: SOLUTIONS 157

1 Is racula

P

0 Still l ive?

A. IN TRASYLVAIA

Despite what Bram Stoker has told us, I had grave reason to

doubt that Count Dracula was ever really destroyed. I ac

cordingly decided to go to Transylvania to investigate the

truth for myself. My purposes were: ( 1) to ascertain whether

Count Dracula was still alive; (2) in the event that he was

destroyed, I wished to see his actual remains; (3) in the

event that he was still alive, I wished to meet him.

At the time I was in Transylvania, about half the

inhabitants were human and half were vampires. The

humans and vampires are indistinguishable in their out

ward appearance, but the humans (at least in Transylvania)

always tell the truth and the vampires always lie. What

enormously complicates the situation is that half the in

habitants of Transylvania are totally insane and completely

deluded in their beliefs-all true propositions they believe

to be false and all false propositions they believe to be true.

The other half are completely sane and know which pro

positions are true and which ones false. Thus the inhabi

tants of Transylvania are of four types: ( 1) sane humans;

(2) insane humans; (3) sane vampires; (4) insane vampires.

Whatever a sane human says is true; whatever an insane

human says is false; whatever a sane vampire says is false;

158 WEIRD TES

and whatever an insane vampire says is true. For example, a

sane human will say that two plus two equals four; an insane

human wll say it doesn't (because he really believes it

doesn't) ; a sane vampire wll also say it doesn' t (because he

knows it does and then lies) ; an insane vampire wl say it

does (because he believes it doesn't, and then lies about

what he believes) ,

167.

I once met a Transylvanian who said, "1 am human or 1 am

sane. "

Exactly what type was he?

168"

Another inhabitnt said, "I am not a sane human. "

What type was he?

169.

Another inhabitant said, "I am an insane human. "

Is he of the same type as the last inhabitant?

170.

I once met an inhabitant and asked him, "Are you an insane

vampire?" He answered "Yes" or "No, " and I knew what he

was.

What was he?

171 ,

I once met a Transylvanian who said, "I am a vampire. "

Can it be inferred whether he i s human or a vampire?

Can it be inerred whether he is sane?

IS DRACULA STLL ALIVE? 159

172 .

Suppose a Transylvanian says, "I am insane. "

(a) Can it be infered whether he is sane?

(b) Can it be inferred whether he is a human or a vampire?

173. An Ingenious Puzzle.

The converse of a statement "If P then Q" is the statement

"If Q then P. " Now, there exist two statements X, Y which

are converses of each other and such that:

( 1) Neither statement is deducible from the other.

(2) If a Transylvanian makes either one of the statements,

it follows that the other one must be true.

Can you supply two such statements?

174 .

Given any statement X, suppose a Transylvanian believes

that he believes X. Does it follow that X must be true?

Suppose he doesn' t believe that he believes X. Does it

follow that X must be false?

175 .

Suppose a Transylvanian says, "I believe X. " I he is

human, does it follow that X must be true? If he is a

vampire, does it follow that X must be false?

The answer to this problem constitutes an important

general principle!

176 .

I once met two Transylvanians, A and B. I asked A, "Is B

human?" A replied, "1 believe so. " Then I asked B, "Do you

believe A is human?" What answer did B give (assuming he

answered "Yes" or "No")?

1 60 WEID TAES

177 .

Let us define a Transylvanian to be reliable if he is either a

sane human or an insane vampire and to be unreliable i he

i s either an insane human or a sane vampire. Reliable

people are those who make tre statements; unreliable

people are those who make false statements {whether out of

malice or delusion} .

Suppose you ask a Transylvanian: "Are you reliable?"

and he gives you a "Yes" or "No" answer. Can YQU deter

mine from his answer whether or not he is a vampire? Can

you determine whether he is sane?

178.

Suppose, instead, you asked him, "Do you believe that you

are reliable?" He gives you a "Yes" or "No" answer. Now

can you deterine whether he is a vampire? Can you deter

mine whether he is sane?

B. IS COUNT DRACULA STILL ALIVE?

179.

We recall that the first important question I wanted to

settle was whether Count Dracula was still alive. Well, I

asked one Transylvanian about the matter, and he said, "If

I am human, then Count Dracula is still alive. "

Can it be determined i Dracula i s still alive?

180.

Another Transylvanian said, "I I am sane, then Count

Dracula is still alive. "

Can it be determined i Dracula i s still alive?

IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE? 161

181.

Another one said, " If I am a sane human, then Count

Dracula is still alive. "

Can it be determined whether Dracula is alive?

182 .

Suppose a Transylvanian said, "If I am either a sane human

or an insane vampire, then Count Dracula is still alive. "

Could i t then be determined whether Dracula i s still

alive?

183.

I s there a single statement a Transylvanian could make

which would convince you that Dracula is alive and also that

the statement is false?

184.

Is there a single statement a Transylvanian could make

which would convince you that Dracula is still alive and

which also is such that you could not tell whether the state

ment is true or false?

185.

Suppose a Transylvanian made the following two state

ments:

( 1) I am sane.

(2) I believe that Count Dracula is dead.

Could it be inferred whether Dracula is alive?

1 62 WEIRD TALES

1868

Suppose a Transylvanian made the following two state

ments:

(1) I am human.

(2) If I am human then Count Dracula is still alive.

Could it be determined whether Dracula i s still alive?

c. WHAT QUESTION SHOULD BE ASKED?

187.

Can you in one question find out from a Transylvanian

whether or not he is a vampire?

1888

Can you in one question find out from a Transylvanian

whether or not he is sane?

1898

What question could you ask a Transylvanian which will

force him to answer "Yes, " regardless of which of the four

types he is?

190.

Can you in one question find out from a Transylvanian

whether Count Dracula is still alive?

D. IN DRACULA' S CASTLE

Had I had my wits about me and realized the answer to the

last problem, I would have saved myself no end of trouble.

IS DRACULA STLL ALIVE? 163

But I was so conused at the time, so bewildered by this

cross- classification of sane and insane superimposed on

lying and truth-telling, that I j ust could not think straight.

Besides, I was a little nervous being in the company of

Transylvanians, some of whom were vampires. And yet-a

far more bewilderng situation awaited me!

I still did not know whether Count Dracula was alive. I

felt that i only I could get to Dracula' s Castle, I could find

out the answer. Little did I realize at the time that this

would only complicate matters-for reasons you will soon

discover.

I knew where Dracula' s Castle was all right, and I knew

that there was much activity there. I also knew that the

castle had a host, but I did not know whether this host was

Count Dracula (let alone whether Dracula was even alive! ) .

Now, admission to Dracula' s Castle was by invitation only,

and invitations were given to only the most elite of Transyl

vanian society. Therefore, I had to spend several months of

arduous social-climbing before I found myself of suffi

ciently high standing to be invited. The day finally came,

and I received an invitation to attend a fete lasting several

days and nights at Caste Dracula.

I went wth high hopes, and soon received my first

shock. A shor time after I entered the castle, I realized that

in my haste I had forgotten to take my toothbrush, a pocket

chess set, and some reading material. So I started to walk

out of the door to go back to my hotel, but was intercepted

by an exceedingly strong and brutal-looking Transylvanian

who politely but quite firly told me that once one enters

Dracula' s Castle, he can never leave wthout permission of

the host. "Then," I said, "I should like to meet the host. "

"That is quite impossible for the present, " he inormed me,

"but I can take a message to him, i you like. " Well, I sent

the host a written message asking if I could leave the castle

for a short while. The reply soon came; it was short and

none too reassuring. It said: " Of course not! "

164 WEID TAES

So, here I was a prisoner in the castle of Count

Dracula! Well, what could I do? Obviously nothing at the

moment, so i a truly Zen�like manner I decided to enj oy

the evening for what it was worth and to spring into action

whenever the first opportunity presented itself.

The ball that evening was the most magnifcent I have

ever seen or read about. At about 2: 00 A.M. I decided to

retire and was shown to my room. Amazingly enough,

despite the infinite danger I was in, I slept soundly. I arose

about noon the next day, and after a hearty meal I mingled

with the guests, hoping to gain more information. Then I

received my second shock. All of the people (except myself

belonged to a small, elite subgroup of Transylvanians who

instead of using the words "Yes" and "No, " used "Bal"

and "Da" -just like on the island of zombies! So here I was

stuck in a situation with so-called "elite Transylvanians, "

each of whom was either a human or a vampire, either sane

or insane, and on top of all that, I did not know what "Bal"

and "Da" meant! Thus the complexities of the former

"nonelite" Transylvanians whom I had interrogated out�

side the castle was compounded with the complexities of

zombie island. It seemed that in my coming to the castle I

had jumped from the frying pan into the fire.

Well, at this realization, I' m afraid I lost all my Zen

like composure and was thoroughly depressed the rest of

the day. I retired early, not even caring to see the second

evening of festivities. I lay dow wearily, unable either to

sleep or to think, Then, suddenly, I jumped up with a start. I

realized that the new Bal-Da complications were really

easily manageable. I excitedly got out my pencil and note

book and at once worked out the following problems:

191.

In one question (answerable by "Bal" or "Da") I could find

out from anyone in the castle whether or not he is a vampire.

IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE? 165

192.

In one question I could find out if he is sane.

In one question I could find out what "Bal" means.

194.

If desired, I could ask anyone in the castle a question which

would force him to answer "Bal. "

1950

In one question I could find out whether Dracula is alive!

What are these questions?

E. THE RIDDLE OF DRACULA

N ow we come to the climax! Next day I found out all the in

formation I wanted-Dracula was indeed alive, in excellent

health, and was in fact my host. To my surprise, I also found

out that Dracula was an insane vampire, hence every state

ment he made was true.

But what good did this knowledge do me now that I

was at the mercy of fate and risked being turned into a

vampire and losing my soul forever? After a few more days

the festivities ended, and all the guests were permitted to

leave except for me. So here I was, virtually alone in what

was now a dreary macabre castle, a prisoner of a host I had

not yet met.

I didn' t have long to wait. Shortly before midnight I

was rudely awakened from a sound sleep and politely but

firmly escorted to the private chambers of Count Dracula,

who evidently had requested an audience with me. My

1 66 WEID TALES

guide left, and there I was face to face with Count Dracula

himself. After what seemed an eternity of silence, Dracula

said, "Are you aware that I always give my victims some

chance of escape?"

ì

"No, " I honestly replied, "I was not aware of this. "

"Oh, indeed, " replied Dracula, "I would not think of

depriving myself of this great pleasure. "

Somehow or other, I did not quite like the tone of voice

in which he said this; it somehow savored of the supercilious.

"You see, " continued Dracula, "I ask my victim a

riddle. If he correctly guesses the answer within a quarter of

an hour, I set him free. If he fails to guess, or if he guesses

falsely, I strike, and he becomes a vampire forever. "

"A sane or an insane one?" I innocently inquired.

Dracula tured livid with rage. "Your j okes are not

funny! " he shouted. "Do you fully realize the gravity of the

situation? I am hardly in the mood for frivolous j ests. Any

more of that, and I won' t even give you the usual chance. "

Frightening as all this sounded, my immediate reac

tion was primarily curiosity as to why Dracula would will

ingly risk losing a victim. "What motivates you to this

sporting generosity?" I inquired.

"Generosity?" said Dracula with a disdainful air.

"Why, I don' t have a generous bone in my body. It' s just

that the enormous sadistic pleasure I derive in watching my

victim squirm, write, and wriggle under these agonizing

mental gymnastics more than compensates for the infini

tesimal probability that I will lose him. "

This word "infinitesimal" was none too consoling.

"Oh yes, " continued Dracula, "I have never lost a victim

yet; so you see, I am not running much risk. "

"Very well, " I said, bracing myself as well as I could,

"what is the riddle?"

196"

Dracula looked at me scrutinizingly for some time. "Your

questions to my guests were very clever-oh yes, I know all

IS DRACULA STLL ALIVE? 1 67

about them. Very clever indeed, but not as clever as you

might think. You had to design a separate question for each

piece of information you wanted; you never hit on one

simple unifying principle which would have saved you much

. mental labor. There is one sentence S having the almost

magical property that given any information you want to

know, given any sentence X whose tth you wish to ascer

tain, all you would have to do is ask anyone in this castle, ' Is

S equivalent to X' If you get ' Bal' for an answer, X must be

true; if you get ' Da' for an answer, X must be false. So, for

example, i you wished to find out whether the speaker is a

vampire, you would ask, ' Is S true i and only if you are a

vampire?' I you wished to find out i he is sane, you need

merely ask, ' Is S true if and only if you are sane?' To have

found out what ' Bal' means, you needed merely to ask, 'Is S

true if and only if "Bal" means yes?' To have found out

whether I was still alive, you could have asked, 'Is S true if

and only if Dracula is still alive?' etc. "

"What is this sentence S?

"

I asked, with enorous

curiosity. "Ah" replied Dracula. "that is for you to find out!

This is your riddle! "

So saying, Dracula rose to leave the room. "You have

fifteen minutes. You' d better think hard; the stakes are

quite high. "

Quite high, indeed! Those were the most painful fi

teen minutes of my life. I was so paralyzed by fear that no

thoughts came at all. I felt certain that Dracula was secretly

watching me from some hiding place.

When fifteen minutes elapsed, Dracula triumphantly

retured and started lumbering toward me with dripping

fangs. Closer and closer he came until he was practically

upon me. Then suddenly I raised my hand and yelled: "Of

course! The sentence S is . . . . "

What is the sentence S which saved me?

Epilogue.

The shock on poor Dracula on my having solved the riddle

168 WID TAES

was so great that he perished on the spot and, within a few

minutes, crumbled into dust. Now when anyone asks me,

"Is Count Dracula still alive?" I can truthully and accur-

ately answer "Bal. "

"

197"

There are four minor inconsistencies in this stor. Can you

spot them?

SOLUTIONS

His statement i s either true or false. Suppose it i s false.

Then he is neither human nor sane, hence he must be an

insane vampire. But insane vampires make only tue state

ments, and we have a contradiction. Therefore his stte

ment is true. The only ones who make true statements are

sane humans or insane vampires. I he were an insane

vampire then he wouldn't be either human or sane, and his

statement would be false. But we know the statement i s

true. Therefore he must be a sane human.

168.

He must be an insane vampire.

No, this time he is a sane vampire.

170@

A sane human would answer "No" to this question, and any

of the other three types would answer "Yes. " Had I gotten a

"Yes" answer, I couldn't have know what type he was. But

I told you that I did know. hence he didn't answer "Yes. " So

I S DRACULA STLL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 1 69

he answered "No, " from which follows that he must have

been a sane human.

171"

It cannot be inferred whether he is human or a vampire, but

it does follow that he is insane. A sane human would not say

that he is a vampire and a sane vampire would know that he

is a vampire and would then lie and say he is human. On the

other hand, an insane human would believe, and hence

would say he is a vampire, and an insane vampire would

believe he was human and would then say he is a vampire.

1728

This time, all that follows is that he is a vampire. A sane

human could not say that he is insane, and an insane human

would believe that he is sane, and, being human, could not

say that he is insane.

173,

I' m sure many such pairs of statements can be found; the

pair I had in mind is this:

X: I I am sane, then I am human.

Y: If I am human, then I am sane.

Suppose the speaker asserts X. We will prove that Y must

be true, that is, that if he i s human, then he is sane. Well,

suppose he is human. Then it is true that if he is sane then

he is human (since he is human, period) . This means that X

is true. Then the speaker must be sane, because insane

humans don' t make true statements. Therefore if he i s

human, he is sane, hence Y is true.

Conversely, suppose the speaker asserts Y. We must

show X true. Well, suppose he is sane. Then Y must be true.

Hence the speaker is human (because sane vampires don't

1 70 WIRD TALES

make tre statements) . So he is human (under the assump

tion that he is sane) . Therefore i he is sane then he is

human, so statement X is tre.

174.

The answer to both questions is "Yes. " Suppose a Transyl

vanian believes a certain statement X. Then it of course

does not follow that X must be true, because he may be

insane. But if he believes that he believes X, thenX must be

tue! For, suppose on the one hand that he i s sane. Since he

believes the statement that he believes X, then the state

ment that he believes X must be true. Therefore he in fact

does believe X. And since he is sane, X must be true. On the

other hand, suppose he is insane. Since he believes the

statement that he believes X, then the statement that he

believes X must be false. Hence he doesn' t really believe X

(he only thinks he does! ) . Since he doesn' t believe X, and he

is insane, then again X must be true.

We have thus shown that if a Transylvanian believes

that he believes X, then X must be true regardless of

whether he i s sane or insane. Similarly it can be show that

i he doesn' t believe that he believes X, then X must be

false. We leave this to the reader.

1758

Again both answers are "Yes" -this is a corollary of the

solution to the preceding problem.

Suppose A asserts that he believes X. Suppose A is

human. Then he believes what he asserts, so he believes

that he believes X. Then, as we have seen in the solution to

problem is 1 74, X must be true, whether A is sane or insane.

Similarly, suppose A i s a vampire. Then he doesn' t believe

what he asserts, so he doesn' t believe that he believes X. So

X must be false, whether A is sane or insane.

IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 1 7 1

176&

A asserts that he believes that B is human. B either asserts

that he believes A is human or asserts that he believes that

A is not human. If the latter were the case, we would get the

followng contradiction.

We have:

( 1) A says that he believes B is human.

(2) B says that he believes A is not human.

Suppose A is human. Then by ( 1) it follows, by the prnciple

of problem 1 75, that B is human. Then by (2) it follows (by

the same principle) that A is not human. Therefore it is U

contradiction that A is human.

Suppose A is a vampire. Then from ( 1) , B is not human

(by the same principle) , so B is a vampire. Then from (2) it

follows (by the same principle) that A is human. This i s

again a contradiction. Therefore i B answered "No" we

would have a contradiction. Hence B answered "Yes. "

177.

Nothing whatever can be inferred, because all Transyl

vanians will answer "Yes" to this question. The reader can

check this out for himsel.

178 .

This is a different case; it cannot be inferred from the

answer whether the speaker is human or a vampire, but it

can be inferred whether he is sane. If he is sane, then he wll

answer " Yes" ; if he is insane then he will answer " No. " We

leave the proof to the reader.

1790

No, it cannot. It could be that he is a sane human and

1 72 WEIRD TALES

Dracula is alive, or it could be that he is an insane vampire

and Dracula is dead. (In fact, if he is an insane vampire then

Dracula could be alive or dead. )

1800

Again the answer is "No. "

The answer is still "No. " He could, for example, be an

insane vampire, in which case Dracula might or might not

be alive.

182.

Yes, this time it would follow that Dracula is alive.

Let us use the terminology of problem 1 77 and re

phrase the native' s statement thus: "If I am reliable then

Dracula is alive. "

We proved in Chapter 8 (see solutions to problems

109-1 12) that if a native of an island of knights and knaves

says, "If I am a knight then so-and- so, " then the speaker

must be a knight and the so-and-so must be true. Similarly,

i an inhabitant of Transylvania says, "If I am reliable then

so-and-so, " then he must be reliable and the so-and- so

must be true. The proof is really the same-just substitute

the word "reliable" for "a knight. "

183.

A statement which would work is: "I am unreliable and

Dracula is dead. " We leave the proof to the reader. (Hint:

first show that the speaker is not reliable. )

184.

A sentence which does this is: "I am reliable if and only i

Dracula is still alive. "

I S DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 1 73

In the solution to problem 1 22 of Chapter 8 we proved

that if an inhabitant of an island of knights and knaves says,

"I am a knight if and only i so-and-so, " then the so-and- so

must be true (but it i s not possible to tell whether the

. speaker is a knight or a knave) . Similarly, if a Transylvanian

says, "I am reliable ifand only if so-and-so, " then the so

and- so must be true regardless of whether the speaker i s

reliable or not. The proof is really the same-just substitute

"reliable" for " a knight. "

There are several other statements which would also

work. For example: "I believe that the statement that

Dracula is alive is equivalent to the statement that I am

human. " Another, rather amusing, example is "I believe

that if someone asked me whether Dracula is still alive, then

I would answer "Yes. "

1858 �

Yes, it would follow that Dracula must be dead.

From (1) we can infer that the speaker is human

because a sane vampire would know he is sane and hence

say he is insane, and an insane vampire would believe he is

sane and then say that he is insane. Therefore the speaker

is human.

Let us now recall the principle established in problem

1 75: when a human says that he believes something, then

that something must be the case (regardless of whether he

is sane or insane) . Well, we now know the speaker is human

and that he said that he believes that Dracula is dead.

Therefore Count Dracula must be dead.

186 .

From his first statement, "I am human, " it follows, not that

he is human, but that he must be sane. (An insane human

wouldn' t know he was human and an insane vampire would

think he is human and then would say he was a vampire. )

Now that we know that he i s sane, we shall prove that he is

1 7 4 WEIRD TAES

human. Suppose he were a vampire. Then it is false that he

is human, and since a false statement implies any stte

ment, then his second statement-"I I am human then

Dracula is still alive" -would have to be true.

But a sane vampire cannot make true statements, so

we have a contradiction. Therefore he cannot be a vampire;

he must be human.

Now we know that he is both sane and human, so he

makes true statements. Therefore his second statement

that if he is human then Dracula is still alive-must be true.

Also, he is human. Therefore Dracula is still alive.

1870

Just ask him whether he is sane. A human (whether he is

sane or not) will answer "Yes" and a vampire will answer

"No. "

188�

Just ask him whether he is a human. A sane Transylvanian

(whether he is human or vampire) wl say "Yes, " and an

insane Transylvanian will say "No. "

For the next few problems I will just tell you what the

questions are. You should have enough experience by now

to be able to prove for yourselves that these questions

work

189.

One question which works is: "Do you believe you are

human?" All Transylvanians must answer "Yes" to this

question. It' s not that they all believe that they are human

(only sane humans and insane vampires believe this) but all

natives will say that they believe it.

Another question which would work is: "Are you

reliable?" All Transylvanians would claim to be reliable.

IS DRACULA STLL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 1 75

190.

Either of the following questions will work:

( 1) "Is the statement that you are reliable equivalent to the

statement that Dracula is alive?

(2) "Do you believe that the statement that you are 8

human is equivalent to the statement that Dracula is

alive?"

191 .

Ask him, "Is ' Bal' the correct answer to the question of

whether you are sane?" If he answers "Bal" then he is

human; i he answers "Da" then he is a vampire.

192 0

Ask him, "Is ' Bal' the correct answer to the question of

whether you are human?" If he answers "Bal" then he i s

sane; i he answers "Da" then he i s insane.

193.

Ask him, "Do you believe you are human?" Whatever word

he answers must mean yes. Alteratively, ask him, "Are you

reliable?"

194.

One question which will work is: "Is ' Bal' the correct answer

to the question of whether you are reliable?" (We recall

that being reliable means being either a sane human or

U insane vampire. )

Another queston which works: "Are you reliable i

and only if ' Bal' means yes?"

Either of these questions will force an answer of

"Bal, " as can be proved in essentially the same manner as

1 7 6 WEIRD TAES

problem 1 6 1 of Chapter 1 1 (except that being reliable now

plays the role played by being human) .

195.

Either of the following questions will do the j ob.

( 1) Do you believe that "Bal" is the correct answer to the

question of whether the statement that you are human

is equivalent to the statement that Dracula is alive?

(2) Is "Bal" the correct answer to the question of whether

the statement that you are reliable is equivalent to the

sttement that Dracula is alive?

A much simpler and more elegant solution is provided by

the unifing prnciple, which is explained in number 196.

196 B The Unifing Principle.

Let us defne an elite Transylvanian to be of type 1 if he

answers "Bal" to the question: "Does 2 plus 2 equal 4?"

This means, of course, that given any other question whose

correct answer is uYes, " one of type 1 will answer "Bal" to

this question. We will define an elite Transylvanian to be of

type 2 i he is not of type 1 . This means that given any true

statement X (such as 2 plus 2 equals 4) , i you ask one of

tye 2 whether X is tre, he will answer "Da. "

Let us immediately note that i "Bal" does mean yes,

then people of type 1 are those who are reliable, and people

of tpe 2 are those who are unreliable. I "Bal" means no,

then we have the reverse (type l =unreliable and type

2 reliable) ,

Now, the unifying principle is this: To find out of any

given statement X whether X is true, just ask an elite

Transylvanian whether X is equivalent to the statement

that he is of type 1 . You could phrase your question thus:

"Is X tre i and only i you are of type I?" We will prove

that i he answers "Bal, " then X must be true, and i he

IS DRACULA STLL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 1 77

answers "Da, " then X must be false. Thus the "magic"

sentence S is: "You are of tye 1 " (or "Yau answer ' Bal' to

the question of whether 2 +2 =4") .

Proof: S is t

h

e sentence: "You are of type 1

"

j X is the

sentence whose truth you wish to ascertain. The question

.

you ask is whether S is equivalent to X. Suppose you get the

answer "Bal. " We are to prove that X must then be true.

Case One: "Bal " means yes. In this case we know two

things: (i) type I -reliable; (ii) the speaker, by sayng,

"Bal, " is asserting that S is equivalent to X.

Subcase 1 a: The speaker is of tye 1 . Then he is reliable

and makes true statements. Then S really is equivalent taX

and also S is true (since he is of type 1 ) . Hence X is true.

Sub case 1 b: The speaker is of type 2. Then he is unreliable

and makes false statements. Since he asserts that S is

e quivalent to X, then S is not equivalent to X. But S is false

(since the speaker is not of type 1) , and X is not equivalent

to S, so X is true.

Case To: "Bal " means no. In this case we know two things:

(i) type 1 =unreliable; (ii) the speaker i s asserting that S is

not equivalent to X.

Sub case 2a: The speaker is of te 1 . Then he is unreliable

and makes false statements. He falsely asserts that S is not

equivalent to X, hence S really is eqivalent to X since S is

true, then X is true.

Subcase 2b: The speaker is of type 2. Then he is reliable and

makes true statements. Hence S is not equivalent to X

(since he asserts it isn' t) , but S is false, hence X must again

be true.

We have shown that a "Bal" answer means that X is true.

We could go through a similar round of reasoning to prove

1 78 WEIRD TALES

that a "Da" answer signifies that X is false. However, we

can take the follmving shortcut:

Suppose he answers "Da. " Now, answering "Da" to

this question is really the same as answering "Bal" to the

question: Are you of type 1 if and only if X is false?"

(Because for any two statements Y and Z, the statement

that Y is equivalent to Z is the very opposite of the

statement that Y is equivalent to not Z) . So he would have

answered "Bal" had you asked him: "Are you of type 1 if

and only if X is false?" Since he would have answered "Bal"

to this, then it follows (by the above proof) that X really is

false.

197" Answer to the Question on Inconsistencies.

(1), (2) On two occasions Dracula said, "Oh yes. " An elite

Transylvanian does not use the word "Yes. "

(3) When the strong and brutal-looking Transylvanian told

me that I could not leave the castle without permission

of the host, why should I have believed him?

(4) When the host sent me back the message "Of course

not! " why should I have believed him? I did not yet know

that the host was an insane vampire and makes correct

statements.

IS DRACULA STLL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 179

l� Lo

g

ic and Li fe

A. SOME CHARACTERIZATIONS OF

LOGIC

198 . Tweedledum' s Characterization of Logic.

I love the following characterization of logic given by

Tweedledum:

Teedledee (to Alice) I I know what you're thinking

about, but it isn' t so, nohow.

Teedledum I Contrariwise, if it was so, it might be;

and i i t were so, i t would be; but as i t isn' t i t ain' t.

That' s logic.

199. Thurber's Characterization.

In The Thirteen Clocks, Thurber gives a characterization of

logic which goes something like this: Since it is possible to

touch a clock without stopping it, then it is possible to start

a clock without touching it. This is logic as I see and

understand it.

200 .

Thurber' s characterization reminds me a bit of my

LOGIC AND LIFE 183

favorite syllogism: Some cars ratte. My car is some car. So

no wonder my car rattes!

201 . Another Characterization of Logic. _

A friend of mine-an ex-police officer-when he heard I

was a logician, said: "Let me tell you how I see logic. The

other day my wife and I were at a party. The hostess offered

us some cake. On the platter were j ust two pieces, one

larger than the other. I thought for a while, and then I

decided to take the larger piece. Here is how I reasoned: I

know my wife likes cake and I know she knows that I like

cake. I also know she loves me and wants me to be happy,

therefore she would want me to have the larger piece.

Therefore I took the larger piece. "

202�

The above reminds me of the story of two men who were in a

restaurant and ordered fish. The waiter brought a dish wth

two fish, one larger than the other. One of the men said to

the other, "Please help yourself. " The other one said,

"Okay, " and helped himself to the larger fish. Afer a tense

silence, the first one said, "Really, now, i you had offered

me first choice, I would have taken the smaller fsh! " The

other one replied, "What are you complaining for; you have

it, don' t you?"

203 .

This also reminds me of the story of a woman at a banquet.

When the silver platter of asparagus came her way, she cut

off all the tips, put them on her plate and passed the platter

to her neighbor. The neighbor said: "Why do you do a

thing like that? Why do you keep all the tips for yourself and

pass the rest on to me?" The woman replied, " Oh, the tips

are the best part, didn' t you know?"

184 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

2048

I once saw this cartoon in a newspaper: A little boy and girl

are walking on a sidewalk; the boy is walking on the inside.

A truck has just passed through the muddy street and

splashed the girl hopelessly. The boy says, "Now do you

understand why I don't walk on the outside like a

gentleman?

205&

I also like the following characterization of ethics. A boy

once asked his father, "Daddy, what is ethics?" The father

replied: "I will explain it to you, my son. The other day a

lady came into the store. She gave me a twenty dollar bill,

thinking it was a ten. I also thought it was a ten, and gave her

change accordingly. Several hours later I discovered it was

a twenty. Now ethics, my boy, is: ' Should I tell my partner?' "

206s

I once went into a Chinese restaurant with a mathematician

friend. On the menu was prnted: Extra charge for anything

served extra. My friend observed, "They really could have

left out the first and last words. "

207.

I once saw the following sign outside a restaurant.

GOOD FOOD IS NOT CHEAP

CHEAP FOOD IS NOT GOOD

Do these two sentences say the same thing or different

things?

The answer is that logically speaking, they say exactly

the same thing; they are both equivalent to the statement

LOGIC AND LIFE 185

that no food is both good and cheap. Though these state

ments are logically equivalent, I would say that psychologi

cally they suggest different things; when I read the first

sentence, I picture good expensive food; when I read the

, second, I think of che!P rotten food. I don't think my reac

tion i s atypical.

B. ARE YOU A PHYSICIST OR A

MATHEMATICIA?

208.

A well-known problem concerns two beakers, one con

taining 10 fuid ounces of water and the other 10 fuid

ounces of wine. Three ounces of the water are poured into

the wine container, and after stirring, 3 ounces of the

mixture are poured back into the water container. Is there

now more water in the wine container or more wne in the

water container?

There are two ways of solving this problem, one by

straightorward arithmetic and the other by common sense.

Of the two, I greatly prefer the latter. The solution by

arithmetic is as follows: Mter 3 ounces of water are poured

into the wne container, there are then 1 3 ounces of mixture

in the wine container; so the mixture is 3/13 water and

1 0/13 wine. Mter I pour 3 ounces of the mixture back into

the water container, I have poured 3 X 1 0/13 ¯ 30/13

ounces of wine into the water. So the water container now

contains 3 0/13 ounces of wne. Now, before the second

pouring, the wne container contained 3 ounces of water,

and 3 X 3/13 ounces of water was poured back into the

water container. So the wne container now contains 3 -

9/13 ounces of water. But 3 - 9/13 ¯ 39/1 3 - 9/1 3 ¯

3 0/13. So the wine container contains exactly the same

amount (viz. , 30/1 3) of water as the water container con

tains wine.

The common- sense solution i s far quicker, and also

186 LOGC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THG

suggests something far more general: Since the amount of

liquid in each container is now the same, then obviously

however much water is missing from the water container is

replaced by the same volume of wine. This solves the

problem. Of course this "common- sense" solution doesn' t

tell you what this volume is, whereas the arithmetic solution

tells you that it is 30/1 3 . However, the common- sense

solution is equally applicable to the following more general

problem (which the arithmetic method could never handle) .

We start with the same containers as before, and we

pour liquid back and forth from one container to the other,

without specifying how much we pour or how many pour

ings we make, nor is it necessary that the same amount be

poured each time, but when we are finished, we have 10

ounces of liquid i n each container. Is there more water in

the wine container or more wine in the water container?

By the same common-sense argument, the amounts

must be equal, but there is now no way of knowing what this

amount is.

209.

When I came upon the above problem, I immediately

thought of the following question: We start again with the

1 0 ounces of water in the first beaker, A, and 1 0 ounces of

wine in the second beaker, B. We transfer 3 ounces back

and forth any fnite number of times. What is the smallest

number of pourings required to reach a stage at which the

percentage of wine in each mixture is the same?

The solution I had in mind is that it is impossible to do

this in any finite number of steps. Regardless of how much

wine is in one beaker and how much water is in the other,

and regardless of how much liquid is poured back and forth

at each step (provided one never empties one beaker into

the other) , the wine concentration in B will always be higher

than that in A. This can be shown by a simple mathematical

induction argument. At the outset, the wine concentration

in B is of course higher than in A. Now, suppose after a

LOGIC AD LIFE 187

given stage the B is still more concentrated than A. If we

pour some of B into A, we are pouring from a stronger to a

weaker mixture, hence B wll still be stronger than A. I we

pour from A to D, then B will still be stronger than A. Since

every transfer is one of these two cases, it follows that B

must always remain more concentrated than A. The only

way to equalize the mixture is by pouring all of one beaker

into the other.

Now, as a purely mathematical problem, my reasoning

is impeccable. As a problem about the actual physical

world, however, my reasoning was quite fallacious. It as

sumed that liquids are infinitely divisible, whereas in fact

they are composed of discrete molecules. This was pointed

out to Martin Gardner by P. E. Argyle of Royal Oak, British

Columbia. Argyle calculated that afer 47 double inter

changes, the probability would be significant that the con

centrations would be the same. 1

I wonder i Argyle' s solution i s correct if the number of

molecules in the wine container is odd rather than even. At

any rate, I never in a million years would have thought of

this as a physical rather than a mathematcal problem.

2 10. Magnet Testing.

Martin Gardner gives the following problem: 2 You are in a

room containing no metal of any sort except for two iron

bars. One is a bar magnet and the other is not magnetized.

You can tell which one is the magnet by suspending each by

a thread tied around its center and obsering which bar

tends to point north. Is there a simpler way?

The given solution was to pick up one of the bars and

touch its end t the middle of the other bar. If there is mag

netic attraction, then you are holding the magnet; i there

isn't, then you are not.

I

For details see Martin Gardner, Te Second Scientifc American Book of Puzzles

and Diversions (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1961) , pp. 163-64.

�

artn Gardner, Mathematical Carnival (New York: Vintage Books, 1977), Q.

178.

188 LOGC IS A MNY-SPLENDORED THIG

This "physicist' s" solution is a perfectly sensible one

and is certinly simpler than the expedient of suspending

both bars by threads tied around their centers. Well, I,

being essentially a logician rather than a physicist, thought

of the following solution, which I believe is midway in sim

plicity between the two others: namely, suspend just one

magnet by a thread tied to its center and see if it points

north.

2 1 1. Ad What About You?

Are you of the mathematician or physicist type? Well, there

is the following delightful test to tell whether you are a

mathematician or physicist.

You are in a country cabin in which there is an

unlighted stove, a box of matches, a faucet with cold

running water, and an empty pot. How would you get a pot

of hot water? Doubtless you wll answer, "I would fill the

pot with cold water, light the stove, and then put the pot on

until the water gets hot, " To this I reply: "Good; so far,

mathematicians and physicists are in complete agreement.

Now, the next problem separates the cases. "

In this problem, you are in a country cabin in which

there is an unlighted stove, a box of matches, a faucet with

cold running water, and a pot filed with cold water. How

would you get a pot of hot water? Most people reply, "1

would light the stove and put the pot of cold water on it. " I

reply: "Then you are a physicist! The mathematician would

pour out the water, reducing the case to the preceding prob

lem, which has already been solved. "

We could go a step further and consider the case of a

pot of cold water already on a lighted stove. How do we get

hot water? The physicist just waits for the water to get hot;

the mathematician turns off the stove, dumps out the water,

reducing the case to the first problem (or he might j ust tur

off the stove, reducing the case to the second problem) .

A still more dramatic variation goes as follows: A

LOGIC AD LIFE 189

house is on fire. We have available a hydrant and a dis

connected hose. How does one put out the fire? Obviously,

by frst connecting the hose to the hydrant and then squirt

ing the building. Now, suppose you have a hydrant, ô

disconnected hose and a house not on fire. How do you put

out the fire? The mathematician first sets fire to the house,

reducing the problem to the preceding case.

2120 Von Neumann and the Fly Problem.

The following problem can be solved either by the "hard"

way or the "easy" way.

Two trains 200 miles apart are moving toward each

other; each one is going at a speed of 50 miles per hour. A

fly starting on the front end of one of them fies back and

forth between them at a rate of 7 5 miles an hour. It does this

until the trains collide and crush the fy to death. What is

the total distance the fly has flown?

The fly actually hits each train an infinite number of

times before its gets crushed, and one could solve the

problem of summing an infinite series of distances (getting

shorter and shorter, of course, and converging to a defi

nite finite amount) -this is solving it the "hard" way and

would have to be done with pencil and paper. The "easy"

way is as follows: Since the trains are 200 miles apart and

each train is going at 50 miles an hour, it takes 2 hours for

the trains to collide. Therefore the fy was flying for 2 hours.

Since the fly was flying at the rate of 75 miles per hour, then

the fly must have flown 1 50 miles. That' s all there is to it!

Well, the great mathematician Von Neumann was

given this problem, thought for a few seconds and said,

"Oh, of course, 1 50 miles. " His friend said, "Good, how did

you get it?" Von Neumann replied, "I summed the series. "

There is also the following joke about Von Neumann. He

was consulted by a group who was building a rocket ship to

190 LOGIC I S A MANY- SPLENDORED THIG

send into outer space. When he saw the incomplete struc

ture, he asked, "Where did you get the plans for this ship?"

He was told, "We have our own staff of engineers. " He

disdainfully replied: "Engineers! Why I have completely

sewn up the whole mathematical theory of rocketry. See my

paper of 1 952. " Well, the group consulted the 1 952 paper,

completely scrapped their 1 0 million dollar structure, and

rebuilt the rocket exactly according to Von Neumann' s

plans. The minute they launched it, the entire structure

blew up. They angrily called Von Neumann back and said:

"We followed your instructions to the letter. Yet when we

started it, it blew up! Why?" Von Neumann replied, "Ah

yes; that is technically known as the blow-up problem-1

treated that in my paper of 1 954. "

2140

There is an allegedly true story about a little girl living in

Princeton, New Jersey, who was having trouble with arith

metic. In a period of about two months she, for some

unknown reason, made a startling improvement. One day

her mother asked her if she knew the reason for her im

provement. The little girl replied: "I heard there is a pro

fessor in this town who' s good at numbers. I rang his

doorbell, and every day he' s been helping me. He teaches

real good. " The mother, somewhat startled, asked her

whether she knew his name. The little girl replied, "Not

exactly; it goes something like Ein-stein. "

215.

There is another story that Einstein once told a colleague

that he did not like teaching at a co-ed college because with

all the pretty girls in the room, the boys wouldn't pay

enough attention to mathematics and physics. His friends

said, "Oh come on now, Albert, you know the boys would

listen to what you have you say. " Einstein replied, "Oh,

such boys are not worth teaching. "

LOGIC AD LIFE 1 91

216.

The following joke illustrates perectly the diference be�

tween U physicist and a mathematician.

A physicist and a mathematician were fying together

from the West Coast to a research laboratory in Washinge

ton, D. C. Each was asked to wte ð repor of his trip. Well,

over Kansas they passed a black sheep. The physicist

wrote: "There is a black sheep in Kansas.

,

j The mathemae

tician wrote: "There exists-somewhere in the Midwest-a

sheep-black on top. "

c. VERMONTERS

217.

The last story is reminiscent of a story told about Calvin

Coolidge. Coolidge was visiting a farm with some friends.

When they came to a fock of sheep, one of the friends said,

"I see these sheep have just been shor. " Coolidge replied,

"Looks like it from this side. "

218.

When the humorist Will Rogers was about to be intro

duced to President Coolidge, he was told, "You know, it' s

impossible to make Coolidge laugh. " Rogers said, "I' ll make

him laugh. " And Will Rogers most certainly did! When

introduced to the president, and when told, "Mr. Rogers, I

would like you to meet President Coolidge, " Will Rogers

tured to the president and said: "Eh? Didn't get the

name. "

2 19.

Calvin Coolidge was, of course, a Vermonter, and I love

stories about Veronters, One story goes that a man

192 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

walked past the house of a Veront farmer who was sitting

on the porch rocking in his chair. The man said, "Been

rocking like that all your life?" The farmer replied, "Not

yet! "

220.

A characteristic of Vermonters (at least as portrayed in

humorous stories) is that the Vermonter, when asked a

question, gives accurate answers but often fails to include

information which may be highly relevant and very impor

tant. A perect illustration of this principle is the j oke about

one Vermont farmer who went to his neighbor' s farm and

asked the other farmer, "Lem, what did you give your horse

last year when it had the colic?" Lem replied, "Bran and

molasses. " The farmer went home, returned one week

later, and said, "Lem, I gave my horse bran and molasses,

and it died. " Lem replied, "So did mine. "

221 .

My fvorite Vermonter story is about the tourist traveling

in Vermont who came across a fork in the road. On one road

was a sign: "To White River Junction. " On the other road

was a sign: "To White River Junction. " The tourist

scratched his head in perplexity, spied a Vermont native

standing at the intersection, went over to him and asked,

"Does it make any difference which road I take?" The Ver

monter replied, "Not to me it doesn' t. "

D. OBVIOUS?

222.

This story has been told about many different mathema

ticians. A mathematics professor during a lecture made a

statement and then said, "This is obvious. " A student

LOGIC AD LIFE 193

raised his hand and asked, "Why is it obvious?" The pro

fessor thought for a few moments, walked out of the room,

returned about twenty minutes later, and said, "Yes, it is

obvious! " -and continued the lecture.

223 .

Another story is told about a professor who met a student in

the hall shortly after he had given a lecture. The student

said: "Professor---, I did not understand the proof you

gave of Theorem 2. Could you please explain it again?" The

professor went into a trance-like silence for about three

minutes, and then said, "Yes, therefore it follows! " The

student replied, "But what is the proof" The professor

went into another trance, returned to earth, and said,

"-therefore the proof is correct. " The student replied,

"Yes, but you still haven' t told me what the proof is! " The

professor said, "All right, I' ll prove it to you another way! "

He went into another trance, returned, and said, "That also

does it. " The poor student was as bewildered as ever. The

professor said, "Look, I' ve given you three proofs; if none of

these help, I' m afraid there is nothing more I can do, " and

walked away.

224.

A story is told about a famous physicist who, after a lecture

to a professional group, said, "Now I will take any ques

tions. " One member of the audience raised his hand and

said, "I didn't understnd your proof of Theorem B. " The

physicist replied, "That' s not a question. "

225.

When I was a graduate student at Princeton, there was cir

culating the following explanation of the meaning of the

word "obvious" when used by different members of the

mathematics department. I shall not use names, but letters.

194 LOGIC I S A MANY·SPLENDORED THIG

When Professor A. says something is obvious, it

means that if you go home and think about it for a couple of

weeks, you will realize it is true.

When Professor L. says something is obvious, it

means that if you go home and think about it for the rest of

your life, the day might come when you will see it.

When Professor C. says something is obvious, it

means that the class has already known it for the last two

weeks.

When Professor F. says something is obvious, it means

that it is probably false.

E. ABSENT-MINDED PROFESSORS

226.

One story has it that a student one day met a professor in

the hall. He asked him, "Have you had lunch yet?" The

professor thought for a moment and said, "Tell me, in

which direction was I walking when you stopped me?"

227.

I heard the following stor about the mathematician David

Hilbert. I once told this story to a physicist who told me that

he had heard that same stor about Ampere!

As I heard the stor, Professor and Mrs. Hilbert were

giving a party. After one guest arrived, Mrs. Hilbert took

David aside and said, "David, go up and change your tie. "

Hilber went up; an hour passed and he didn' t come down.

Mrs. Hilbert was woried, went up to the bedroom, and

found Hilbert in bed asleep. When awakened, he recalled

that when he took off his tie, he automatically went through

the motions of taking off the rest of his clothes, putting on

his paj amas, and getting into bed.

228.

My favorite of all absent-minded professor stori es is one

LOGC AD LFE 195

told about Norbert Weiner. I have no idea whether or not it

is true (though it conceivably could be, since Weiner did

have very poor eyesight in his later years) , but whether true

or not, here it is.

The Weiners were to move from one part of Cam

bridge to another. Mrs. Weiner, knowing of her husband' s

absent-mindedness, decided to condition him i n advance.

So thirty days before the moving date Mrs. Weiner said to

her husband in the moring before he left for school: "Now

Norbert, thirty days from now we will move. When you get

out of class, you don' t take bus A; you take bus B! " Weiner

replied, "Yes, dear. " The next moring Mrs. Weiner said:

"Now remember, Norbert, in twenty-nine days we will

move. When you get out of class, you don' t take bus A; you

take bus B! " Weiner replied, "Yes, dear. " Well, this went

on each day until the morning of the moving day. Mrs.

Weiner said, "Now today is the day, Norbert: when you get

out of class today, you don' t take bus A; you take bus B! "

Norbert replied, "Yes, dear. " Well, when Weiner got out of

class, he of course took bus A, walked to his house, and

found it empty. He said to himself: "Oh, of course! This is

the day we have moved! " So he went back to Harvard

Square, took bus B, and got off at what he remembered was

the correct stop. However, he had forgotten his new

address. He wandered around, and by this time it was

getting quite dark. He spied a little girl on the street, went

over to her, and said, "Excuse me, but would you by any

chance happen to know where the Weiners live?" The little

girl replied, "Oh, come on, Daddy, I' ll take you home. "

F. MUSICIAS

2290

The composer Robert Schumann wote at the beginning of

one of his compositions: "To be played as fast as possible. "

A few measures later he wrote: "Faster. "

1 96 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

230. gµ

A story is told that Richard Wagner was walking on a street

in Berlin one day and came across an organ-grinder who

was grinding out the overure to Tannhauser. Wagner

stopped and said, "As a matter of fact, you are playing it a

little too fast. " The organ-grinder at once recognized Wag

ner, tipped his hat, and said, "Oh thank you, Herr Wagner!

Thank you, Herr Wagner! "

The next day Wagner retured to the same spot and

found the organ-grinder grinding out the overture at the

correct tempo. Behind him was a big sign: "PUPIL OF

RICHARD WAGNER.

"

231 .

There is the story of four musicians from the Boston Phil

harmonic who were out rowing. One of them fell overboard

and yelled: "Help! I can' t swim! " One of the other musi

cians yelled, "Fake it! "

232 . Brahms and the Amateur String Quartet.

This story i s told of the composer Johannes Brahms, who

had four friends who were string players. They were very

poor musicians, but such nice people that Brahms enj oyed

associating with them. They decided to surprise Brahms

and spent six months assiduously practicing Brahms' latest

quartet. One evening they corered Brahms at a party, and

the frst violinist said: " Johannes, we have a surprise for you.

Come into the next room please. " Brahms followed them

into the next room, the players took out their instruments

and started to play the quartet. Well, the first movement

was about as much as poor Brahms could bear! He got up,

gave a polite but sickly smile, and started to leave the room.

The first violinist ran after him and said: "Johannes, how

was the perormance? Was the tempo all right?" Brahms

replied: "Your tempos were all good. I think I liked yours

the best. "

LOGIC AND LIFE 197

G. COMPUTERS

233.

Many experiments have been conducted in which an English

sentence (preferably an idiom) is translated by one com

puter into Russian, then a second computer translates the

Russian back to English. The purpose of the experiment is

to see how much distortion results.

In one case they tried the idiom: "The spirit is strong

but the fesh is weak." What came back was: "The vodka is

good, but the meat is rotten."

234. __________ _

Another time they tried the idiom: "Out of sight, out of

mind." What came back was: "Blind idiot."

235. __________ _

There is the joke of an IBM salesman who tried to sell a

computer that "knew everything." The salesman said to

one customer, "Ask it anything you like; it will answer you."

The customer said, "Okay, where is my father?" The

machine thought for a minute, and out came a card which

said: "Your father is now fishing in Canada." The customer

said: "Ha! The machine is no good! It so happens that my

father has been dead for several years." The salesman

replied: "No, no; you have to ask in more precise language!

Here, let me ask the question for you." He stepped over to

the computer and said, "This man before you; where is his

mother's husband?" The computer thought for a moment,

and out came a card: "His mother's husband has been dead

for several years. His father is now fishing in Canada."

236. __________ _

When the world's first automated plane took off, the pas

sengers were a bit worried. Then the computer's soothing,

198 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THG

reassuring voice came over the loudspeaker: "Ladies and

gentlemen, you are privileged to be riding the world' s frst

fully automated plane. No human erring pilots; you are

guided by infallible computers. All your needs will be taken

care of. You have nothing to worry about-worry about

worry about-worry about- . . . "

237 ø The Military Computer.

My favorite computer story is about a military computer.

The army had just sent a rocket ship to the moon. The

colonel programmed two questions into the computer:

( 1) Will the rocket reach the moon? (2) Will the rocket

retur to earth? The computer thought for a while, and out

came a card which said: "Yes. " The colonel was furious; he

didn' t know whether "Yes" was in answer to the first ques

tion or the second question or the conj unction of the two

questions. So he angrily programmed back: "Yes, what?"

The computer thought for a while, and a card came out

saying: "Yes, Sir. "

LOGIC AND LIFE 1 99

How to Prove

o nything

I think a good characterization of a drunken mathematician

is one who says, "I can prove anyshing! "

In Plato' s dialogue Euthydemus, Socrates, in descrb

ing to Crito the amazing dialectical talents of the sophist

brothers Euthydemus and Dionysodorus, says, "So great is

their skill that they can refute any proposition whether true

or false. " Later i the dialogue Socrates describes how

Dionysodorus proves to one of the audience, Ctessipus,

that Ctessipus' father is a dog. The argument i s as follows:

Dion I You say you have a dog?

Ctes I Yes, a villain of one.

Dion I And has he puppies?

Ctes I Yes, and they are very like himself.

Dion I And the dog is the father of them?

Ctes I Yes, I cerainly saw him and the mother of the

puppies come together.

Dion I And is he not yours?

Ctes I To be sure he is.

Dion I Then he is a father and he is yours; ergo, he i s

your father, and the puppies are your brothers.

Inspired by the example of these great sophists, I shall, in

this chapter, prove to you many strange and wondrous

things.

200 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

A. PROOFS OF VARIOUS AND SUNDRY

THINGS

238. Proof that Either Tweedledum or

Tweedledee Exists.

This proof wll not show that Tweedledee and Tweedledum

both exist; it will merely show that at least one of them does.

Moreover, it will be impossible to tell from the proof which

one of them really exists.

We have a box in which is written the following three

sentences:

( 1) TWEEDLEDUM DOES NOT EXIST

(2) TWEEDLEDEE DOES NOT EXIST

(3) AT LEAST ONE SENTENCE I THIS BOX IS FALSE

Consider sentence ( 3) . If it is false, then it is not the case

that at least one of the three sentences is false, which means

that all three sentences are true, which means that sentence

(3) i s true, and this is a contradiction. Therefore sentence

(3) cannot be false; it must be true. Hence at least one of the

three sentences really is false, but it can' t be (3) that is

false, hence sentence ( 1) or sentence (2) is false. If sentence

(1) is false, then Tweedledum exists; if sentence (2) is false

then Tweedledee exists. Hence either Tweedledum or

Tweedledee exists.

I once gave a talk on my logic puzzles to an undergraduate

mathematics club. I was introduced by the logician Melvin

Fitting (a former student of mine, who knows me extremely

well) . His introduction really captures the spirit of this book

almost better than the book itself! He said, "I now intro

duce Professor Smullyan, who will prove to you that either

he doesn' t exist or you don't exist, but you won' t know

which. "

HOW TO PROVE ANYTHG 201

239 � Proof that Tweedledoo Exists

( 1) TWEEDLEDOO EXISTS

(2) BOTH SENTENCES I THIS BOX ARE FALSE

Let us first look at sentence (2) . I it were true, then both

sentences would be false, hence sentence (2) would be

false, which is a contradiction. Therefore sentence (2) i s

false. Hence i t is not the case that both sentences are false,

so at least one of them i s true. Since sentence (2) is not true,

it must be sentence ( 1) which is true. Therefore Tweedle

doo exists.

240 o And What About Santa Claus?

There seems to be a lot of skepticism about the existence of

Santa Claus. For example, i the Marx brothers movie A

Night at the Opera, Groucho was going through a contract

with Chico, and they came to one clause stating that if any

of the parties participating in the contract is shown not to

be in his right mind, the entire agreement is automatically

nullified-this clause is known as the sanity clause. Chico

says, 'You can't fool me-there ain' t no Sanity Clause! "

I also recall i n my high school days a j oke going around

about Mae West: Why can' t Mae West be in the same tele

phone booth with Santa Claus? Answer: Because there is no

Santa Claus. (This might aptly be called an "ontological"

j oke. )

Well, despite this modem skepticism, I will now give

you three proofs which will establish beyond any reason

able possibility of doubt that Santa Claus does and must

exist. These proofs are variants of a method, derived from

J. Barkley Rosser, of proving anything whatsoever.

Poof One: We shall present this proof in the form of a

dialogue.

202 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

First Logician / Santa Claus exists, if I am not mis

taken"

Second Logician / Well of course Santa Claus exists,

if you are not mistaken.

First Logician / Hence my statement is true.

Second Logician / Of course!

First Logician / So I was not mistaken-and you

admitted that if I am not mistaken, then Santa Claus

exists. Therefore Santa Claus exists.

Proof To: The above proof is but a literary elaboration of

the following proof of J. Barkley Rosser.

IF THIS SENTENCE IS TRUE

THEN SANTA CLAUS EXISTS

The idea behind this proof is the same as that of the proof

that when an inhabitant of an island of knights and knaves

says: "If I am a knight then so-and- so, " then he must be a

knight and the so-and-so must be true.

If the sentence is true, then surely Santa Claus exists

(because if the sentence is true then it must also be true

that if the sentence is true then Santa Claus exists, from

which follows that Santa Claus exists) , hence what the

sentence says is the case, so the sentence is true. Hence the

sentence is true and i the sentence is true then Santa Claus

exists. From this it follows that Santa Claus exists.

Question / Suppose an inhabitant of an island of

knights and knaves said, "I I' m a knight then Santa

Claus exists. " Would this prove that Santa Claus

exists?

Answer / It certainly would. Since, however, Santa

Claus doesn't exist, then neither a knight nor a knave

could make such a statement.

HOW TO PROVE AYTHG 203

Poof Three:

THIS SENTENCE IS FALSE AND

SANTA CLAUS DOES NOT EXIST

I leave the details to the reader.

Discussion. What is wrong with these proofs? Well, the

underlying fallacy is exactly the same as in the reasoning of

the suitor of Portia Nth: some of the sentences involved are

not meaningful (see discussion in Chapter 1 5) , hence should

not be assumed to be either true or false.

The next proof we shall consider is based on a totally

different principle.

241 " Proof that Unicorns Exist.

I wish to prove to you that there exists a unicor. To do this,

it obviously suffices to prove the (possibly) stronger state

ment that there exists an existing unicor. (By an existing

unicor I of course mean a unicor which exists. ) Surely if

there exists an existing unicor, then there must exist a

unicor. So all I have to do is prove that an existing unicor

exists. Well, there are exactly two possibilities:

(1) An existing unicor exists.

(2) An existing unicor does not exist.

Possibility (2) is clearly contradictory: How could an exist

ing unicorn not exist? Just as it is te that a blue unicor i s

necessarily blue, an existing unicor must necessariy be

existing.

Discussion. What is wong wth this proof This proof is

nothing more than the distilled essence of Descartes'

famous ontological proof of the existence of God. Descartes

defines God as a being which has all properties. Hence, by

definition, God must also have the property of existence.

Therefore God exists.

204 LOGC IS A MAY·SPLENDORED THG

Immanuel Kant claimed Descartes' argument to he i

valid on the grounds that existence is not a property. I

believe there is a far more signifcant error in the proof. I

shall not argue here the question of whether existence is or

is not a property; the point I wish to make is that even i

existence is a property, the proof is still no good.

Consider first my proof (sic) of the exi stence of a

unicor. As I see it, the real fallacy lies in the double mean

ing of the word "an, " which in some contexts means

"every" and in other contexts means "at least one. " For

example, if I say, "An owl has large eyes, " what is meant is

that owls have large eyes, or that all owls have large eyes, or

that every owl has large eyes. But i I say, "An owl is in the

house, " I certainly do not mean that all owls are in this

house, but only that there exists an owl who is in this house.

So, when I say "an exsting unicorn exists, " it i s not clear

whether I mean that all existing unicors exist or that there

exists an existing unicorn. I I meant the first, then it i s

true-of course all existing unicors exist; how could there

be ô existing unicorn who does not exist? But this does not

mean that the statement is true in the second sense, that is,

that there must exist an existing unicor.

Similarly with Descartes' proof; all that properly fol

lows is that all Gods exist, that is, that anything satisfying

Descartes' definition of a God must also have the property

of existence. But this does not mean that there necessarily

exists a God.

242. Proof by Coercion.

There is the famous anecdote about Diderot paying a vsit

to the Russian Court at the invitation of the Empress. He

made quite free with his views on atheism. The Empress

herself was highly amused, but one of her councillors sug

gested that it might be desirable to put a check on these

expositions of doctrine. They then conspired with the

mathematician Euler, who was present at the occasion, and

who himself was a believer. Euler announced that he had a

HOW TO PROVE AYTHG 205

proof of the existence of God which he would give before all

the court, if Diderot desired to hear it. Diderot gladly con··

sented. Well, Euler, taking advantage of Diderot' s lack of

knowledge of mathematics, advanced toward Diderot and

said in a grave voice: "A squared minus B squared equals A

minus B times A plus B-therefore God exists. Reply! "

Diderot was embarrassed and disconcerted, while peals of

laughter rose on all sides. He asked permission to retur at

once to France, and it was granted.

243" A Proof that You Are Either Inconsistent or

Conceited.

I thought of this proof about thirty years ago and told it to

several students and mathematicians. A few years ago

someone told me that he had read it in some philosophical

j ournal, but he could not recall the author. Anyway, here is

the proof.

A human brain is but a finite machine, therefore there

are only finitely many propositions which you believe. Let

us label these propositions pI, p2, . . . , pn, where n is the

number of propositions you believe. So you believe each of

the propositions p 1 , p2, . . . , pn. Yet, unless you are

conceited, you know that you sometimes make mistakes,

hence not everything you believe is true. Therefore, if you

are not conceited, you know that at least one of the proposi

tions, pl, p2, . . . , pn is false. Yet you believe each of the pro

positions pI , p2, . . . , pn. This is a straight inconsistency.

Discussion. What is the fallacy of this argument? In my

opinion, none. I really believe that a reasonably modest

person has to be inconsistent.

B. MORE MONKEY TRICKS

244 ø Russell and the Pope.

One philosopher was shocked when Bertrand Russell told

206 LOGIC I S A MANY·SPLENDORED THIG

him that a false proposition implies any proposition. He

said, "You mean that from the statement that two plus two

equals five it follows that you are the Pope?" Russell

replied "Yes:' The philosopher asked, "Can you prove

this?" Russell replied, "Certainly, " and contrived the fol

lowng proof on the spot:

( 1) Suppose 2 + 2 5.

(2) Subtracting two from both sides of the equation we get

2 3.

(3) Transposing, we get 3 2.

(4) Subtracting one from both sides, we get 2 1 .

Now, the Pope and I are two. Since two equals one, then the

Pope and I are one. Hence I am the Pope.

245. Which Is Better?

Which is better, eternal happiness or a ham sandwch? It

would appear that eteral happiness is better, but this is

really not so! Mter all, nothing is better than eteral

happiness, and a ham sandwich is certainly better than

nothing. Therefore a ham sandwch is better than eternal

happiness.

246 0 Which Clock Is Better?

This one is due to Lews Carroll. Which is better, a clock

that loses a minute a day or a clock that doesn' t go at all?

According to Lewis Caroll the clock that doesn' t go at all is

better, because it is rght twice a day, whereas the other

clock is right only once in two years. "But, " you might ask,

"what' s the good of it being right twce a day if you can' t tell

when the time comes?" Well, suppose the clock points to

eight o' clock. Then when eight comes around, the clock is

right. "But, " you continue, "how does one know when eight

o' clock does come?" The answer is very simple. Just keep

your eye very carefully on the clock and the ver moment it is

right it wll be eight Oclock.

HOW TO PROVE ANYTHIG 207

247. Proof that There Exists a Horse with

Thirteen Legs.

This proof is not original; it is part of the folklore of mathe

maticians.

We wish to prove that there exists at least one horse

who has exactly thirteen legs. Well, paint all the horses in

the universe either blue or red according to the following

scheme: Before you paint the horse, count the number of its

legs. If it has exactly thirteen legs, then paint it blue; if it has

either fewer or more than thirteen legs, paint it red. You

have now painted all horses in the universe; the blue ones

have thirteen legs and the red ones don' t. Well, pick a horse

at random. If it is blue, then my assertion has been proven.

If it is red, then pick a second horse at random. If the

second horse is blue, then my assertion has been proven.

But suppose the second horse is red? Ah, that would be a

horse of a different color! But that' s a contradiction, since

the horse would be of the same color!

248 0

I am reminded of a conundrum posed by Abraham Lincoln:

If the tail of a dog was called a leg, how many legs would a

dog have? Lincoln' s answer was: "Four; calling the tail a leg

doesn' t mean that it is one. "

249 . My Favorite Method of All.

This is the best monkey trick I know. It is an absolutely

unbeatable method of proving anything whatever. Its sole

drawback is that only a magician can present it.

Here is what I do: Suppose I wish to prove to some

body that I am Dracula. I say, "The only logic you must

know is that given any two propositions p and q, i p is tue,

then at least one of the two propositions p, q is true. "

Virtually everyone will assent to this. "Very well, " I say, as I

take a deck of cards out of my pocket, "as you can see, this

card is red. " I then place the red card face dow on the left

208 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

palm of the "victim" and I have him cover the back wth his

right hand. I continue: "Let p be the proposition that the

card you are holding is red; let q be the proposition that I

am Dracula. Since p is true, then you grant that either p or q

is true?" He assents. "Well now, " I continue,

"

p is obv

ously false-just turn over the card. " He does so, and to his

amazement the card is black! "Therefore, " I conclude

triumphantly,

"

q is true, so I am Dracula! "

c. SOME LOGICAL CUIOSITIES

In the last two sections we considered several invalid argu

ments which at first sight appeared to be valid. We shall

now do the very opposite: we will consider some principles

which at first seem downright crazy, but tur out to be valid

after all.

250. The Drinking Principle.

There is a certain principle which plays an important role in

moder logic and which some of my graduate students have

affectionately dubbed "The Drinking Principle. " Perhaps

the reason it got its name is that I always preface the study

of this principle with the following joke.

A man was at a bar. He suddenly slammed down his

fist and said, "Gimme a drink, and give everyone elsch a

drink, caush when I drink, everybody drinksh! " So drinks

were happily passed around the house. Some time later, the

man said, "Gimme another drink, and give everyone elsch

another drink, caush when I take another drink, everyone

takesch another drink! " So, second drinks were happily

passed around the house. Soon after, the man slammed

some money on the counter and said, "And when I pay,

everybody paysh! "

This concludes the j oke. The problem, now, is this:

Does there really exist someone such that i he drinks,

everybody drinks? The answer wl surprise many of you.

HOW TO PROVE AYTHIG 209

A more dramatic version of this problem emerged in a con

versaton I had with the philosopher John Bacon: Prove

that there is a woman on earth such that if she becomes

sterile, the whole human race will die out.

A dual version of The Drinking Principle is this: Prove that

there is at least one person such that if anybody drinks,

then he does.

Soluton. Yes, it really is true that there exists someone

such that whenever he (or she) drinks, everybody drinks. It

comes ultimately from the strange principle that a false

proposition implies any proposition.

Let us look at it this way: Either it is true that every

body drinks or it i sn' t. Suppose it is true that everybody

drinks. Then take any person-call him Jim. Since every

body drinks and Jim drinks, then it is true that if Jim drinks

then everybody drinks. So there is at least one person

namely Jim-such that if he drinks then everybody drinks.

Suppose, however, that it is not true that everybody

drinks; what then? Wen, in that case there is at least one

person-call him Jim-who doesn't drink. Since it is false

that Jim drinks, then it is true that if Jim drinks, everybody

drinks. So again there is a person-namely Jim-such that

i he drinks, everybody drinks.

To summarize, call a person "mysterious" if he has

the strange property that his drinking implies that every

body drinks. The upshot of the matter is that i everyone

drinks, then anyone can serve as the mysterious person,

and i it is not the case that everybody drinks, then any

nondrinker can serve as the mysterious person.

As for the more dramatic version, by the same logic it

follows that there is at least one woman such that i she

becomes sterile, all women will become sterile (namely, any

woman, i aU women become sterile, and any woman who

doesn' t become sterile, i not all women become sterile) .

And, of course, if all women become sterile, the human race

will die out.

2 1 0 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

As for the "dual" version, i. e. , that there is someone such

that i anybody at all drinks, then he does-either there is at

least one person who drinks or there isn't. H there isn't,

then take any person-call him Jim. Since it is false that

someone drinks, then it is true that if someone drinks then

Jim drinks. On the other hand, if there is someone who

drinks, then take any person who drinks-call him Jim.

Then it is true that someone drinks and it is true that Jim

drinks, hence it is true that if someone drinks then Jim

drinks.

Epilogue.

When I told The Drinking Principle to my students Linda

Wetzel and Joseph Bevando, they were delighted. Shortly

after, they wote me a Christmas card in which they in

vented the following imaginary conversation (allegedly over

dinner in the cafeteria) .

Logician / I know a fellow who is such that whenever

he drinks, everyone does.

Student / I j ust don' t understand. Do you mean,

" everyone on earth?

Logician / Yes, naturally.

Student / That sounds crazy! You mean as soon as he

drinks, at just that moment, everone does?

Logician / Of course.

Student / But that implies that at some tme, ever

one was drinking at once. Surely that never happened!

Logician / You didn' t listen to what I said.

Student / I certainly did-what' s more, I have re

futed your logic.

Logician / That' s impossible. Logic cannot be

refuted.

Student / Then how come I just did?

Logician / Didn' t you tell me that you never drink?

Student / Vh . . . yes, I guess we' d better change the

subj ect.

HOW TO PROVE ANYTHIG 2 1 1

251 9 Is This Argument Valid?

I have seen many arguments in my life which seem valid but

are really invalid. I only recently came across an argument

which at first seems invalid (indeed, it seems like aj oke) but

turns out to be valid.

Incidentally, by a valid argument is meant one in

which the conclusion necessarily follows from the premises;

it is not necessary that the premises be true.

Here is the argument: 1

( 1) Everyone is afraid of Dracula.

(2) Dracula is afraid only of D0.

Therefore I am Dracula.

Doesn' t that argument sound like just a silly joke? Wel it

isn't; it is valid: Since everyone is afraid of Dracula, then

Dracula is afraid of Dracula. So Dracula is afraid of Dracula,

but also is afraid of no one but me. Therefore I must be

Dracula!

So here is ô argument which seems like a joke, but

turs out not to be one-that' s the funny part of it!

II got it from the philosopher Richard Cartwright

2 1 2 LOGIC IS A MANY·SPLENDORED THIG

From Paradox

o to Truth

A. PARADOXES

252. The Protagoras Paradox.

Perhaps one of the earliest known paradoxes is about the

Greek law teacher Protagoras, who took a poor but talented

student and agreed to teach him without a fee on condition

that after the student completed his studies and won his

first law case, he would pay Protagoras a certain sum. The

student agreed to do this. Well, the student completed his

studies but did not take any law cases. Some time elapsed

and Protagoras sued the student for the sum. Here are the

arguments they gave i court.

Student I I I win the case, then by definition, I don't

have to pay. I I lose the case, then I will not yet have

won my first case, and I have not contracted to pay

Protagoras until after I have won my first case. So

whether I win the case or lose the case, I don' t have to

pay.

Potagoras I If he loses the case, then by defnition

he has to pay me (after all, this is what the case is

about) . I he wins the case, then he will have won his

first case, hence he has to pay me. In either case, he

has to pay me.

FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 2 1 3

Who was rght?

Discussion. I' m not sure I really know the answer to this

dilemma. This puzzle (like the first puzzle of this book,

concering whether I was fooled or not) is a good prototype

of a whole family of paradoxes. The best solution I ever got

was from a lawyer to whom I posed the problem. He said:

"The court should award the case to the student-the

student shouldn' t have to pay, since he hasn' t yet won his

frst case. Mter the terination of the case, then the

student owes money to Protagoras, so Protagoras should

then tur around and sue the student a second time. This

time, the court should award the case to Protagoras, since

the student has now won his first case. "

253 0 The Liar Paradox.

The so-called "Liar Paradox, " or "Epimenides Paradox, "

is really the corerstone of a whole family of paradoxes of

the type known as "liar paradoxes. " (Boy, that sounded

pretty circular, didn' t it?) Well, the original form of the

paradox was about a certain Cretan named Epimenides,

who said, "All Cretans are liars. "

I n this form, we really do not get a paradox at all-no

more than we get a paradox from the assertion that an in

habitant of an island of knights and knaves makes the state

ment, "All people on this island are knaves. " What prop

erly follows is: ( 1) the speaker is a knave; (2) there is at least

one knight on the island. Similarly, with the above version

of the Epimenides paradox, all that follows is that Epi

menides is a liar and that at least one Cretan is truthful.

This is no paradox.

Now, i Epimenides were the only Cretan, then we

would indeed have a paradox, just as we would have i a sole

inhabitant of an island of knights and knaves said that all

inhabitants of the island were knaves (which would be

tantmount to saying that he is a kave, which i s impossible) .

2 1 4 LOGC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

A better version of the paradox is that of a person

saying, "I am now lying. " Is he lying or isn' t he?

The following version is the version which we shall

refer to as the liar paradox. Consider the statement in the

following box:

¸THIS SENTENCE IS FALSE ¸

Is that sentence true or false? I it is false then it is true, and

i it is true then it is false.

We shall discuss the resolution of this paradox a bit

later.

254 0 A Double Version of the Liar Paradox. ¿

The following version of the liar paradox was first pro

posed by the English mathematician P. E. B. Jourdain in

1 91 3. It is sometimes referred to as "Jourdain' s Card Para

dox. " We have a card on one side of which is written:

(1) THE SENTENCE

ON THE OTHER SIDE

OF THIS CARD

IS TRUE

Then you turn the card over, and on the other side is

written:

(2) THE SENTENCE

ON THE OTHER SIDE

OF THIS CARD

IS FALSE

We get a paradox as follows: I the sentence is true, then the

second sentence is true (because the first sentence says it

is) , hence the first sentence is false (because the second

sentence says it is) . If the first sentence i s false then the

FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 2 1 5

second sentence is false hence the first sentence is not false

but true. Thus the first sentence is true i and only i it is

false, and this is impossible.

· 255. Another Version.

Another popular version of the liar paradox is given by the

followng three sentences wrtten on a card.

(1) TilS SENTENCE CONTAINS FIVE WORDS

(2) TilS SENTENCE CONTAINS EIGHT WORDS

(3) EXACTLY ONE SENTENCE ON TilS CARD IS TRUE

Sentence ( 1) is clearly true, and sentence (2) is clearly false.

The problem comes with sentence (3) . I sentence (3) is

true, then there are two true sentences-namely (3) and

(I)-which is contrary to what sentence (3) says, hence

sentence (3) would have to be false. On the other hand, i

sentence (3) is false, then sentence ( 1) is the only true

sentence, which means that sentence (3) must be tue!

Thus sentence ( 3) is true i and only i i t i s false.

Discussion. Now, what is wrong with the reasoning in these

paradoxes? Well, the matter is subtle and somewhat con

troversial. There are those (philosophers, interestingly

enough, rather than mathematicians) who rule out as legiti

mate any sentence which refers to itself. Frankly, I see this

point of view as utter nonsense! In a self-referential sen

tence such as, "This sentence has five words, " the meaning

seems as clear and unequivocal as can be; just count the

words and you will see the sentence must be true. Also, the

sentence, "This sentence has six words, " though false, is

perfectly clear as to its meaning-it states that it has six

words, which as a matter of fact it does not have. But there

is no doubt about what the sentence says.

On the other hand, consider the following sentence:

I THIS SENTENCE IS TRUE I

2 1 6 LOGIC IS A MANY·SPLENDORED THIG

Now, the above sentence does not give rse to any paradox;

no logical contradiction results either from assuming the

sentence to be true or from assuming the sentence to be

false. Nevertheless, the sentence has no meaning whatso�

ever for the following reasons:

Our guiding principle is that to understand what it

means for a sentence to be true, we must frst understand

the meaning of the sentence itself. For example, let X be

the sentence: Two plus two equals four. Before I can under

stand what it means for X to be true, I must understand the

meaning of every word which occurs in X, and I must know

just what it is that X asserts. In this case, I do know the

meaning of all the words in X, and I know that X means that

two plus two equals four. And since I know that two plus

two does equal four, then I know that X must be true. But I

couldn' t have known that X was true until I first knew that

two plus two equals four. Indeed, I couldn't have even

know what it means for X to be true unless I frst knew

what it means for two plus two to equal four. This illus

tates what I mean when I say that the meaning of a sen

tence X being true is dependent on the meaning of X itself. I

X should be of such a peculiar character that the very

meaning of X depends on the meaning of X being true, then

we have a genuinely circular deadlock.

Such is exactly the case wth the sentence in the above

box. Before I can know what it means for the sentence to be

true, I must first understnd the meaning of the sentence

itself. But what is the meaning of the sentence itself; what

does the sentence say? Merely that the sentence is true, and

I don' t yet know what it means for the sentence to be true.

In short, I can't understand what it means for the sentence

to be true (let alone whether it is true or not) until I first

understand the meaning of the sentence, and I can't under

stand the meaning of the sentence until I frst understand

what it means for the sentence to be true. Therefore the

sentence conveys no information whatsoever. Sentences

having this feature are technically known as sentences

which are not well-grounded.

FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 2 1 7

The liar paradox (and all its variants) rest on the use of

ungrounded sentences. (I am using "ungrounded" as short

for "not well-grounded. ") In number 253 the expression,

"This sentence is false" is not well-grounded. In number

254, neither sentence on either side of the card is well-

.

grounded. In number 255, the first two sentences are well

grounded, but the third sentence is not.

Incidentally, we can now say more as to how the suitor

of Portia Nth got into trouble with his reasoning (see

Chapter 5 on Portia' s caskets) . All the earlier Portias used

only sentences which were well-grounded, but Portia Nth

made skillful use of ungrounded sentences to bedazzle her

suitor. The same fallacy occurs in the first few proofs of the

last chapter.

256 0 But Wat About This One?

We return to our friends, Bellini and Cellini of the story of

Portia' s caskets. These two craftsmen made not only

caskets, but also signs. As with the caskets, whenever

Cellini made a sign, he inscribed a false statement on it, and

whenever Bellini made a sign, he inscribed a true statement

on it. Also, we shall assume that Cellini and Bellini were the

only sign-makers of their time (their sons made only

caskets, not signs) .

You come across the following sign:

THIS SIGN WAS

MADE BY CELLINI

Who made the sign? I Cellini made it, then he wrote a true

sentence on it-which is impossible. If Bellini made it, then

the sentence on it is false-which is again impossible. So

who made it?

Now, you can' t get out of this one by saying that the

sentence on the sign is not well- grounded! It certainly is

well-grounded; it states the historical fact that the sign was

21 8 LOGIC I S A MANY- SPLENDORED THIG

made by Cellini; if it was made by Cellini then the sign is

true, and if it wasn' t, the sign is false. So what is the

solution?

The solution, of course, is that I gave you contra

dictory information. If you actually came across the above

sign, then it would mean either that Cellini sometimes

wrote true inscriptions on signs (contrary to what I told you)

or that at least one other sign-maker sometimes wrote false

statements on signs (again, contrary to what I told you) . So

this is not really a paradox, but a swindle.

Incidentally, have you yet figured out the name of this

book?

257. Hanged or Drowned?

In this popular puzzle, a man has committed a crime pun

ishable by death. He is to make a statement. I the state

ment is true, he is to be drowned; if the statement is false,

he is to be hanged. What statement should he make to

confound his executioners?

258 0 The Barber Paradox.

This is another well-known puzzle. It is given that a barber

of a certain small town shaved all the inhabitants of the

town who did not shave themselves, and never shaved any

inhabitant who did shave himself. The question is whether

the barber shaves himself or not. If he does, then he is

violating the rule, since he is then shaving someone who

shaves himself. If he doesn' t, then he is again violating his

rule, since he is failing to shave someone who is not shaving

himsel. So what should the barber do?

259. And What About This?

On an island of knights and knaves two inhabitants, A and

B, make the following statements:

FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 2 1 9

A: B is a knave.

B: A is a knight.

Would you say that A is a knight or a knave? What would

.

you say about B?

SOLUTION TO PROBLEMS 257, 258, 259

257.

All he has to say is, "I wll be hanged. "

258.

The answer is that it is logically impossible that there exists

any such barber.

259.

What you should say is that the author is lying again! The

situation I described is quite impossible; it is really Jour

dain' s Double Card Paradox in a slightly different dress

(see problem 254) .

I A i s a knight then B i s really a knave, hence A i s not

really a knight! If A is a knave, then B is not really a knave,

he is a knight, hence his statement is true, which makes A a

knight. Hence A cannot be either a knight or a knave with

out contradiction.

B. FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH

Someone once defined a paradox as a truth standing on its

head. It is certainly the case that many a paradox contains

an idea which with a little modifcation leads to an im

portant new discovery, The next three puzzles afford a

good illustration of this prnciple.

220 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG ·

260 � What Is Wrong with This Story?

Inspector Craig once visited a community and had a talk

with one of the inhabitnts, a sociologist named McSnurd.

Professor McSnurd gave Craig the following sociological

account:

"The inhabitants of this community have formed var

ous clubs. An inhabitant may belong to more than one club.

Each club is named afer an inhabitant; no two different

clubs are named after the same inhabitant, and every

inhabitant has a club named after him. It is not necessary

that a person be a member of the club named after him; if he

is, then he is called sociable; i he isn' t, then he is called

unsociable. The interesting thing about this community is

that the set of all unsociable inhabitants fors U club. "

Inspector Craig thought about this for a moment, and

suddenly realized that McSnurd couldn' t have been a very

good sociologist; his story simply didn't hold water. Why?

Solution. / This is really the Barber Paradox in a new dress.

Suppose McSnurd' s story was true. Then the club of

all unsociable inhabitants is named after someone-say

Jack. Thus we wll call this club "Jack' s Club. " Now, Jack is

either sociable or unsociable, and either way we have a con

tradiction: Suppose Jack is sociable. Then Jack belongs to

Jack' s Club, but only unsociable people belong to Jack' s

Club, so this is not possible. On the other hand, if Jack is

unsociable, then Jack belongs to the club of unsociable

people, which means that Jack belongs to Jack' s Club

(which is the club of unsociable people) , which makes Jack

sociable. So either way we have a contradiction.

261 . Is There a Spy in the Community?

Inspector Craig once visited a second community and

spoke to an old friend of his, a sociologist named McSnuff.

Craig and McSnuff had gone through Oxford together, and

Craig knew him to be a man of impeccable judgment.

McSnuf gave Craig the followng account of this community

FROMPARADOXTO TRUTH 221

"Like the other community, we have clubs, and each in

habitant has exactly one club named after him, and every

club is named after someone. II this community, however,

i a person is a member of a club, he can be so either secretly

or openly. Anyone who is not openly a member of the club

. named after him is called suspicious. If anyone were known

to secretly belong to the club named after him, he would be

called a spy. Now, the curious thing about this community i s

that the set of all suspicious characters forms a club. "

Inspector Craig thought about this for a moment, and

realized that, unlike the last story, this story is perectly

consistent. Moreover, something interesting emerges from

it-namely, that it is possible to deduce whether or not

there are any actual spies i the community.

Are there?

Solution. The club of all suspicious characters is named

after someone-call him John. Thus we wll call this club

"John' s Club. "

Now, either John himself i s a member of John' s Club

or he isn't. Suppose he isn' t. Then he can' t be suspicious

(because every suspicious person is a member of John' s

Club) . This means that John is openly a member of John' s

Club. So if John is not a member of John' s Club, then John

is openly a member of John' s Club, which is absurd. There

fore John must be a member of John' s Club. Since every

member of John' s Club is suspicious, then John must be

suspicious. Thus John is not openly a member of John' s

Club, yet he is a member, so he is secretly a member-in

other words John is a spy!

We might remark that having solved the preceding

problem, number 260, there is a simpler way of doing the

immediate problem-namely to observe that if there were

no spies in the community, then being suspicious would be

no diferent than being unsociable, hence the set of all sus

picious characters would be the same as the set of unsoci

able people, which would mean that the set of all unsociable

2 2 2 LOGIC I S A MAY-SPLENDORED THIG

people forms a club. But we proved i problem 260 that the

set of all unsociable people cannot form a club. Therefore

the assumption that there are no spies in the community

leads to a contradiction, hence there must be a spy in the

community (but in this proof, we have no idea who) .

These two proofs afford a perect illustration of what

mathematicians mean by the terms "constructive proof"

and "nonconstructive proof. " The second proof is non

constructive in the sense that although it showed that it

couldn' t be the case that there are no spies, it did not

exhibit any actual spy. By contrast, the frst proof is called

constructive in that it actually exhibited a spy-namely the

person (whom we called "John") after whom the club of

suspicious characters is named.

262 0 Problem of the Universe.

There is a certain Universe in which ever set of inhabitants

forms a club. The Registrar of this Universe would like to

name each club after an inhabitant in such a way that no two

clubs are named after the same inhabitant and each inhabi

tant has a club named after him.

Now, if this Universe had only finitely many inabi

tants, the scheme would be impossible ( since there would

be more clubs than inhabitants-for example, if there were

just 5 inhabitants, there would be 3 2 clubs (including the

empty set) ; if there were 6 inhabitants, there would be 64

clubs, and in general, i there are n inhabitants, there must

be 2

n

clubs) . However, this particular Universe happens to

contain infnitely many inhabitants, hence the Registrar

sees no reason why his scheme should not be feasible. For

trillions of years he has been trying to construct such a

scheme, but so far every attempt has failed. Is the failure

due to lack of ingenuity on the part of the Registrar, or is he

attempting to do something inherently impossible?

Solution. He is attempting the impossible; this famous fact

FROMPARADOXTO TRUTH 223

was discovered by the mathematician George Cantor. Sup

pose the Registrar could succeed in naming all the clubs

after all the inhabitants in such a way that no two different

clubs were named after the same inhabitant. Again, let us

call an inhabitant unsociable if he is not a member of the

club named after him. The collection of all unsociable in

habitants of this Universe certainly constitutes a well

defined set, and we are given that ever set of inhabitants

forms a club. Therefore we have the impossible club of all

unsociable inhabitants-impossible for the same reason as

that of problem 260 (this club must be named after some

body, and this somebody cannot be either sociable or

unsociable without entailing a contradiction) .

263 . Problem of the Listed Sets.

Here is the same problem in a different dress; some of the

notions involved will pop up again in the next chapter.

A certin mathematician keeps a book called The Book

of Sets. On each page is written a description of a set of

numbers. We use the word "numbers" to mean the positive

whole numbers 1 , 2, 3, . . . n, . . . . Any set which is listed on

any page is called a listed set. The pages are numbered con

secutively.

The problem is to describe a set which is not listed on

any page of the book.

Solution. Given any number n, call n an extrordinar

number i n belongs to the set listed on page n; call n an

ordinar number if n does not belong to the set listed on

page n.

The set of ordinary numbers cannot possibly be listed;

if it were, the number of the page on which it was listed

couldn' t be either ordinary or extraordinary without en

tailing a contradiction.

224 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

o del's

W

Iscovery

A. GODELIA ISLADS

The puzzles of this section are adaptions of a famous

principle discovered by the mathematical logician Kurt

Gadel which we discuss at the end of the chapter.

264. The Island G.

A certain island G is inhabited exclusively by knights who

always tell the truth and knaves who always lie. In addition,

some of the knights are called "established knights" (these

are knights who in a certain sense have "proved them

selves' ) and certain knaves are called "established knaves. "

Now, the inhabitants of this island have foned various

clubs. It is possible that an inhabitant may belong to more

than one club. Given any inhabitant X and any club C,

either X claims that he is a member of C or he claims that he

is not a member of C.

We are given that the following four conditions, E Îg E2,

C, G, hold.

El: The set of all established knights forms a club.

E

2

: The set of all established knaves forms a club.

C (The Complementation Condition) : Given any club

GODEL'S DISCOVERY 225

C, the set of all inhabitants of the island who are not

members of C form a club of their o\. (Ths club

is caned the complement of C and is denoted by C. )

G (Te Godelian Condition) : Given any club C, there

is at least one inhabitant of the island who dair"

that he is a member of C. (Of course his claim

might be false: he could be a knave. )

264ae

(After Godel) (i) Prove that there is at least one unestab

lished knight on the i sland.

(ii) prove that there is at least one unestablished knave

on the island.

264b .

(After Tarski) (i) Does the set of all knaves on the island

form a club?

(ii) Does the set of all knights on the island for a

club?

Solution to 264a. By condition Ex, the set E of all es

tablished knights forms a club. Hence by condition C, the

set E of all people on the island who are not established

knights also forms a club. Then by condition G, there i s at

least one person on the island who claims to be a member of

the club

E

-in other words, he claims that he is not an

established knight.

Now, a knave couldn' t possibly claim that he is not an

established knight (because it is true that a knave is not an

established knight) , hence the speaker must be a knight.

Since he is a knight, then what he says is true, so he is not an

established knight. Therefore the speaker is a kight but

not an established knight.

By condition Ez, the set of established knaves forms a

club. Therefore (by condition G) there is at least one person

on the island who claims to be an established knave (he

226 LOGIC I S A MANY·SPLENDORED THIG

claims to be a member of the club of established knaves) .

This person cannot be a knight (since no knight would claim

to be any kind of a knave) hence he is a knave. Therefore his

statement is false, so he is not an established knave. This

means that he is a knave but not an established knave.

Solution to 264 b. I the set of knaves formed a club,

then at least one inhabitant would claim to be a knave,

which neither a knight nor a knave could do. Therefore the

set of knaves does not form a club.

If the set of knights fored a club, then the set of

knaves also would (by condition C) , hence the knights don' t

form a club either.

Remarks. ( 1) Problem 264b affords an alternative solution

to problem 264a, which, though nonconstructive, may be

somewhat simpler.

If every knight were established, then the set of

knights would be the same as the set of established knights,

but this is impossible because the set of established knights

forms a club (by condition E Í) but the set of knights doesn' t

(by problem 264b) . Thus the assumption that all knights

are established leads to a contradiction, hence there must

be at least one unestablished knight. Similarly, if every

knave were established, then the set of established knaves

would be the same as the set of knaves, which cannot be,

since the set of established knaves forms a club whereas the

set of knaves doesn't.

By contrast with this proof, our first proof tells us

specifically that anyone who claims that he is not an estab

lished knight must be an unestablished knight, and anyone

who claims to be an established knave must be an unestab

lished knave.

(2) Our proof that the set of knaves does not form a club

used only condition G; conditions E

l

, E2, and C were not

needed for this. Thus condition G alone implies that the

knaves don't form a club. Actually, condition G is equivalent

GODEL' S DISCOVERY 227

t the statement that the knaves don't form U club, for

suppose we are given that the set of knaves doesn't for õ

club; we can derive condition G as follows:

Take any club C. Since the set of knaves is not a club,

then C is not the set of all knaves. Hence either some knight

is in C or some knave is outside C. If some kight is in C, he

would certainly claim to be in C (since he is tuthful) . I

some knave were outside C, he would also claim to be in C

(since he lies) . So in either case, someone claims to be in C.

265. Godelian Islands i n General.

Consider now an arbitrary knight-knave island with clubs.

(By a knight-knave island, we mean, of course, an island

inhabited exclusively by knights and knaves. ) We shall call

the island a Godelian island if condition G holds, i. e. , for

every club C, there is at least one inabitant who claims to

be a member of the club.

Inspector Craig once visited a knight-knave island which

had clubs. Craig (who, incidentally, is a highly cultured

genteman whose theoretical interests are as strong as his

practical ones) was curious to know whether or not he was

on a G6delian island. He found out the following informaton.

Each club is named after an inhabitant and each in

habitant has a club named after him. An inhabitant is not

necessarily a member of the club named after him; if he is,

he is called sociable, if he isn' t he is called unsociable. An

inhabitant X is called a friend of an inhabitant Y if X

testifies that Y is sociable.

Craig still did not know whether or not he was on a

G6delian island until he found out that the island satisfied

the following condition, which we wll call condition H

H: For any club C, there is another club D such that

every member of D has at least one friend in C, and every

nonmember of D has at least one friend who is not a

member of C.

228 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

From this condition H, Craig could deduce whether this

island was G6delian.

Is it?

Soluton. Yes, it is. Take any club C. Let D be a club given

by condition H. This club D is named after someone-say

John. Either John belongs to club D or he doesn' t.

Suppose he does. Then he has a friend-call him

Jack-in club C who testifies that John is sociable. Since

John does belong to D, then John really is sociable, hence

Jack is a knight. So Jack is a knight who belongs to club C,

so Jack will claim he belongs to club C.

Suppose John doesn't belong to club D. Then John

has a friend-call him Jim-who is not a member of C, and

Jim claims that John is sociable. Since John is not a

member of club D, then John is actually unsociable, hence

Jim is a knave. So Jim is a knave who is not in club C, hence

Jim would lie and claim that he is in club C. So whether

John belongs to club D or doesn't belong to club D, there is

an inhabitant who claims to be a member of club C.

Remarks. Combining the results of 264 and 265, we

see that given any island satisfying conditions El, E2, C, and

H, there must be both an unestablished knight and an unes

tablished knave on the island. This result is really a dis

guised form of GodeI' s famous incompleteness theorem,

which we will consider again in Section C of this chapter.

Incidentally, i you would like to try a really tough

problem on one of your frends, just give him an island wth

conditions EI, E2, C, and H (don' t mention G) , and pose

problem 264. It would be interesting to see i he comes up

with condition G himself.

B. DOUBLY GODELIA ISLADS

The puzzles of this section are of more specialized interest

and might best be postponed until after section C.

GODEL' S DISCOVERY 229

By a "doubly Godelian island" we shall mean a knight

knave island with clubs such that the following condition

GG is satisfied:

GG: Given any two clubs Cl, C2, there are inhabitants A, B

.

such that A claims th

a

t B is a member of Cl and B claims

that A is a member of C2.

As far as I know, condition GG does not imply condition G,

nor does condition G imply condition GG; they appear to be

quite independent. Thus ( as far as I know) a doubly

Godelian island is not necessarily a Godelian island.

The subj ect of doubly Godelian islands is a pet hobby

of mine. The puzzles involved bear the same sort of relation

to the Jourdain Double Card Paradox (see problem 254 of

the preceding chapter) as the puzzle of Godelian islands

bears to the liar paradox.

266" The Doubly Gocelian Island S.

I once had the good fortune to discover a doubly Godelian

island S in which conditions El, E2, and C of island G all

held.

(a) Can it be determined whether there is an unestablished

knight on S? What about an unestablished knave?

(b) Can it be determined whether the knights of island S

fou a club? What about the set of knaves?

Soluton. Let us first consider part (b) . If the set of knights

forms a club, then so does the set of knaves (by condition

C) , and if the set of knaves forms a club, so does the set of

knights (again by conditions C) . So if either of these two

sets formed a club, they both would. Well, suppose they

both do. Then by condition GG there must be inhabitants

A,B who make the following claims:

A: B is a knave.

B: A is a knight.

230 LOGIC I S A MAY-SPLENDORED THIG

This is an impossible situation, as we showed in the solution

of problem 259 i the last chapter. The conclusion, there

fore, is that neither the set of knights nor the set of knaves

can form a club.

As for part (a) we can now solve it by either of two

methods; the frst is simpler, our having solved part (b) , but

the second is more instructive.

Method One: Since the set of knights does not form a club

and the set of established knights does, then the two sets

are diferent, hence not all the knights are established.

Similarly with "knaves. "

Method Two: Since the set of established knights forms a

club, so does the set of all the inhabitants who are not

established knights. Taking these two clubs for Ct, Cz, we

have (by condition GG) inhabitants A,B who make the fol

lowing claims:

A: B is an established knight.

B: A is not an established knight.

We leave it to the reader to verify that at least one of the two

speakers A, B must be an unestablished knight (more speci

fically, i A is a knight then he is not an established knight,

and i A is a knave then B must be an unestablished knight) .

The interesting thing is that although we know that one of

A,B is an unestablished knight, we have no idea which one.

(The situation is exactly like that of problem 1 34, the

double casket problem of Bellini and Cellini; one of the

caskets must be a Bellini, but there is no way to tell which. )

Similarly, since the established knaves form a club, so

does the set of all inhabitants who are not established

knaves. Therefore (again by GG) there must be two

speakers A, B who say:

A: B is an established knave.

B: A is not an established kave.

GODEL' S DISCOVERY 231

From this it follows that if B is a knave then he is an les

tablished knave, and i B is a knight then A is an unestab

lished knave (again, we leave the proof of this to the reader) ,

s o in either case, either A or B i s an unestablished knave,

but we don' t know which. (This problem is really the same

. as the double casket problem 1 35 of Bellini and Cellini. )

267" The Island S1 .

I once discovered another doubly Godelian island S

I

which

intrigued me even more. Conditions E

1

, E2 both hold for this

island, but it is not known whether condition C holds or not.

(We recall that condition C is that for any club C, the set of

people not in C forms a club) .

It appears impossible to prove that there is an unes

tablished knight on island 81, or to prove that there is an

unestablished knave. It also appears impossible to prove

that the knights don' t form a club, or to prove that the

knaves don't form a club. However, the following can be

proved:

(a) Prove that either there is an unestablished knight or an

unestablished knave on this island.

(b) Prove that it is impossible that both the knights form

a club and also the knaves form a club.

Soluton. We will first do (b) . Suppose that the knights

formed a club and the knaves formed a club. Then there

would be inhabitants A,B such that A claims B is a knave

and B claims A is a knight, which we know to be impossible

(see preceding problem, or problem 259 of the last chap

ter) . Thus it cannot be that the knights form a club and also

that the knaves form a club; either the knights don' t form a

club or the knaves don' t form a club. If the knights don' t

form a club, then there must be an unestablished knight

(since the established knights do form a club) ; if the knaves

don' t form a club, then there must be an unestablished

kave. But we can' t tell which. This then also proves (a) .

232 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED ¯ÏLÜ

An alternative (and more interesting) method of provo

ing that there is either an unestablished knight or an un

established knave is this:

Since the established knights form a club and the

established knaves for a club, then there are inhabitants

A,B who say:

A: B is an established knave.

B: A is an established knight.

Suppose A is a knight. Then his statement is true, hence B

is an established knave, so B' s statement is false, hence A is

not an established knight. So i this case, A is an unestab

lished knight. If A is a knave, then B' s statement is false, so

B is a knave. Also A' s statement is false, so B is not an

established knave. So, in this case, B is an unestablished

knave.

Therefore either A is an unestablished knight or B is

an unestablished knave (but again, we don' t know which) .

This problem again is like one of the double casket

problems (number 1 36 of Chapter 9), in which one of the

two caskets (we don't know which) was made by either

Bellini or Cellini (but again we don't know which) .

268 0 Some Unsolved Problems.

I have thought of a few problems concering Godelian and

doubly G6delian islands which I have not tried to solve; I

feel it might be fun for the reader to try his hand at some

original work.

268ae

I have stated that as far as I know, neither of the conditions

G, GG imply the other. Can you prove that my conj ecture is

correct? (Or maybe disprove it, but I think that highly

unlikely. ) To do this you must construct an island in which

G holds but GG does not, and construct an island in which

GODEL'S DISCOVERY 233

GG holds but G does not. By constructing an island I mean

specifying all the inhabitants, then specifying which ones

are knights and which ones are knaves and which sets of

people form clubs and which ones do not. (Which knights

and knaves are established has no bearing on this problem. )

268b.

Can you prove (or disprove) my conj ecture that on island S 1

there needn' t be an unestablished knight and there needn't

be an unestablished knave (though, of course, there must

be one or the other) ? That is, can you construct an island

satisfying E

I

, E2, and GG in which there are knights but no

unestablished ones? Can you construct one in which there

are knaves but no unestablished ones? (This time, in con

structing such islands, you must specify not only the

knights, knaves, and clubs, but also which knights and

kaves are established. )

268Co

Assuming all these islands can be constructed (which I am

morally certain is the case, even though I have not verified

it) , in each case what is the minimum number of inhabitants

the island must have? Can you prove in each case that no

smaller number will work?

c. GODEL' S THEOREM

269 0 Is This System Complete?

A certain logician keeps a book called The Book of Sen

tnces. The pages of the book are numbered consecutively,

and each page has exactly one sentence written on it. No

sentence appears on more than one page. Given any sen

tence X, the number of the page on which it is written is

called the page number of X.

234 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

Every sentence of the book, of course, is either true or

false. Some of the true sentences are quite self- evident to

this logician, and he has taken these self-evident truths as

axioms of his logic system. This system also contains

certain rules of reasoning which enable him to prove various

true sentences from the axioms and to disprove various

false ones. The logician is quite confident that his system is

correct in the sense that every sentence which is provable in

the system is indeed a true sentence, and every sentence

which is disprovable in the system is a false one, but he is

uncertain whether his system is complete in the sense that

all the true sentences are provable and all the false are

disprovable. Are all the true sentences provable in his

system? Are all the false sentences disprovable in the

system? These are the questions the logician would like to

have answered.

Well, the logician also has a second book called The

Book of Sets. This book also has all its pages consecutively

numbered, and each page contains a description of a set of

numbers. (We here use the word "numbers" to mean the

positive whole numbers 1 , 2, 3, . . . , n, . a . . ) Any set of num

bers which is described anywhere in this book we will call a

listed set.

Given any number n, it may happen that the set listed

on page n (of The Book of Set) contains n itself as a

member; i this happens we will call n an extraordinar

number. Also, given any numbers n, h, we will call h an

associate of n i the sentence on page h (of The Book of

Sentences) asserts that n is extraordinary.

We are given that the following four conditions hold:

E

l

: The set of page numbers of all provable sen

tences is a listed set.

E2: The set of page numbers of all the disprovable

sentences is a listed set.

C: For any listed set A, the set A of all numbers not in

A is a listed set.

GODEL' S DISCOVERY 235

H: Given any listed set A, there is another listed set

B such that every number in B has an associate in A

and every number outside B has an associate outside

A,

.

These four conditions are sufficient to answer the logcian' s

questions: Is every true sentence provable in the system? Is

every false sentence disprovable in the system? It also can

be determined whether or not the set of page numbers of all

the true sentences is a listed set and whether the set of page

numbers of all the false sentences is a listed set.

How can this be done?

Solution. This is nothing more than the Godelian island

puzzles of Section A in a different dress. In our present

setup, the page numbers of the true sentences play the role

of the knights; those of the false sentences, the knaves;

those of the provable sentences, the established knights;

and those of the disprovable sentences, the established

knaves. The listed sets play the role of the clubs. The

notion of a set being listed on a page bearing a gven

number plays the role of a club being named after a given

inhabitant; hence the extraordinary numbers play the role

of the sociable people, and the notion of "associate" plays

the role of "friend. "

The first thing we must do to solve the present prob

lem is to prove the analog of condition G, which is this:

Condition G: For any listed setA, there is a sentence which

is true if and only if its own page number lies i A.

To prove condition G, take any listed setA. Let B be a

set given by condition H; let n be the number of a page on

whichB is listed. By condition H, if n lies inB, then n has an

associate h inA; if n lies outside B, then n has an associate h

outside A. We assert that the sentence X on page h is the

sentence we seek.

The sentence X says that n is extraordinary-in other

236 LOGIC I S A MA·SPLENDORED THIG

words that n does lie in B (since B is the set listed on page

n) . I X is true then n really does lie in B, hence h lies in A.

So if X i s tre, then its page number h does lie i n A.

Suppose X i s false. Then n does not lie i n B, hence h lies

outside A. Thus X is true i and only i its page number lies

in A.

Condition G having been proved, the logician' s questions

are now easily answered: We are given that the setA of page

numbers of all the provable sentences is a listed set, hence

by condition C, so is the set A of all numbers which are not

page numbers of provable sentences, therefore, (by condi

tion G) there is a sentence X which is true if and only if the

page number of X belongs to A. Now, to say that the page

number of X belongs to A is to say that the page number of

X doesn't belong to A, which is to say that X is not provable

(since A consists of the page numbers of those sentences

which are provable) . Thus X is true i f and only i f X is not

provable. This means that either X is true and not provable

or X is false but provable. We are given that no false

sentence i s provable in the system, hence X must be true

but not provable in the system.

As for obtaining a false sentence which is not dis

provable, we now take A to be the set of page numbers of all

the sentences which are disprovable. Applying condition G,

we get a sentence Y which is true if and only if its page

number is the page number of a disprovable sentence-in

other words, Y is true if and only if Y is disprovable. This

means that Y is either true and disprovable or false and not

disprovable. The first possibility is out, since no disprov

able sentence is true, hence Y must be false but not

disprovable in the system.

As to the other questions, if the set of page numbers of

all the false sentences were a listed set, then there would be

a sentence Z which is true if and only i its page number i s

the page number of a false sentence-in other words, Z

would be true i and only i Z is false, and this is impossible.

(It would be like the sentence: "This sentence i s false. ")

GODEL' S DISCOVERY 237

Therefore the set of page numbers of all the false sentences

is not a listed set. Then by condition C, the set of page

numbers of the true sentences is not û listed set either .

. 270" Godel' s Theorem.

The above puzzle is really a form of Godel' s famous Incom

pleteness Theorem.

In 1 93 1 Kurt Godel came out with the startling dis

covery that in a certain sense, mathematical truth cannot be

completely formalized. He showed that for a wide variety of

mathematical systems-systems meeting certain very rea

sonable conditions-there must always be sentences

which, though true, cannot be proved from the axioms of

the system! Thus no formal axiom system, no matter how

ingeniously constructed, is adequate to prove all mathe

matical truths. G6del first proved this result for the cele

brated system Principia Mathematica of Whitehead and

Russell, but, as I said, the proof goes through for many

diferent systems. In all these systems, there is a well

defined set of expressions called sentences and a classi

fication of all sentences into true sentences and false sen

tences. Certain true sentences are taken as axioms of the

system, and precise rules of inference are given enabling

one to prove certain sentences and disprove others. In

addition to sentences, the system contains names of vari

ous sets of ( positive, whole) numbers. Any set of num

bers which has a name in the system we might call a

nameable or definable set of the system (these are the sets

which we call the "listed" sets in the above puzzle) . Now,

the point is that it is possible to number all the sentences

and to list all the definable sets i n an order such that the

conditions E Íg E2, C, and H of our puzzle hold. (The num

ber assigned to each sentence, which we called the "page

number, " is technically called the Godel number of the

sentence. ) To establish conditions C and H is really a very

simple matter, but to establish conditions El and E 2 is quite

238 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THIG

a lengthy affair, though elementary in principle. ! Anyway,

once these four conditions are established, they lead to the

construction of a sentence which is true but not provable in

the system.

The sentence X in question might be thought of as

asserting its own unprovability; such a sentence must in

fact be true but not provable Gust as a person on island G

who asserts that he is not an established knight must, in

fact, be a knight, but not an established one) .

One might ask the following question: Since Godel' s

sentence X (which asserts its own unprovability) is known

to be true, why not add it as a further axiom to the system?

Well, one can of course do this, but then the resulting en

larged system also satisfies conditions E

l

, E2, C and H,

hence one can obtain another sentence X

l

which is both

true but unprovable in the enlarged system. Thus, in the

enlarged system, one can prove more true sentences than in

the old system, but still not all true sentences.

I might remark that my account of Godel ' s method departs

somewhat from Godel' s original one-primarily in that it

employs the notion of truth, which Godel did not do.

Indeed, Godel' s theorem in its original form did not say that

there was a sentence which is true but not provable, but

rather that under a certain reasonable assumption about

the system, there must be a sentence (which Godel actually

exhibited) which is neither provable nor disprovable in the

system.

A strict formalization of the notion of truth was done

by the logician Alfred Tarski, and it was he who showed that

for these systems, the set of Godel numbers of the true

sentences is not definable in the system. This is sometimes

paraphrased: "For systems of sufficient strength, truth of

lConcering condition H, for each number n, there is the sentence which asserts

that n is extraordinary; this sentence (like every other sentence) has a Godel

number-call this number n*. Well, it turs out that for any definable set A, the

set of all numbers n such that n* is inA-this set B is also definable. Since n* is an

associate of n, condition H is fulfilled.

GODEL' S DISCOVERY 239

the sentences of the system is not definable within the

system. "

271 0 Last · Words.

. Consider the following paradox:

I THIS SENTENCE CAN NEVER BE PROVED I

The paradox is this: If the sentence is false, then it is false

that it can never be proved, hence it can be proved, which

means it must be true. So, if it is false, we have a contradic

tion, therefore it must be true.

Now, I have just proved that the sentence is true.

Since the sentence is true, then what it says is really the

case, which means that it can never be proved. So how come

I have just proved it?

What is the fallacy in the above reasoning? The fallacy is

that the notion of provable is not well defined. One im

portant purpose of the field known as "Mathematical

Logic" is to make the notion of proof a precise one. How

ever, there has not yet been given a fully rigorous notion of

proof in any absolute sense; one speaks rather of prova

bility within a given system. Now suppose we have a system

-call it system S-in which the notion of provability within

the system S is clearly defined. Suppose also that the

system S is correct in the sense that everything provable in

the system is really true. Now consider the following

sentence:

THIS SENTENCE I S NOT PROVABLE I N SYSTEM S

We now don' t have any paradox at all, but rather an inter

esting truth. The interesting truth is that the above sen

tence must be a true sentence which is not provable in

system S. It is, in fact, a crude formulation of Godel' s

240 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED TG

sentence X, which can be looked at as asserting its ow

unprovability, not in an absolute sense, but only within the

given system.

I might also say just a little about the "doubly Godelian"

condition which I analyzed in Section B. The fact is that the

various systems for which Godel ' s result goes through are

not only Godelian" in the sense that given any definable set

A there is a sentence which is true if and only if its Godel

number is in A, but these systems are what I might call

"doubly Godelian, " by which I mean that given any two

defnable sets A, B, there are sentences X, Y such that X is

true i and only i the Godel number of Y is in A, and such

that Y is true i and only i the Godel number of X is in B.

From this (using conditions E

I

, E2, and C) one can con

struct a pair X, Y such that X asserts that Y is provable (by

which I mean that X is true if and only if Y is provable) and

Yasserts thatX is not provable; one of them (we don' t know

which) must be true but not provable. Or we can construct a

pair X, Y such that X asserts that Y is disprovable and Y

asserts that X is not disprovable-from which follows that

at least one of them (we don' t know which) must be false but

not disprovable. Or again, (even without using condition C)

we can construct a pair X, Y such that X asserts that Y is

provable and Y asserts that X i s disprovable; one of them

(we don' t know which) is either true but not provable, or

false but not disprovable (but again we don' t know which) .

Oh, one last thing, before I forget: What is the name of this

book? Well, the name of this book is: "What Is the N are of

This Book?"

GODEL' S DISCOVERY 241

**Also by Raymond M Smullyan
**

THEORY OF FORMAL SYSTEMS FIRST ORDER LOGIC THE TAO IS SILENT

New Jersey . Englewood Cliffs..�&1�mTIl@ITilcQl JF!{lo �mTIlTIll n n�<ID m1 I The Ri ddle of Dracula and Other Logical Puzzles PRENTICE-HALL. INC.

. Ltd. Inc. Wellington. New Zealand 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 Smullyan. Sydney Prentice-Hall of Canada. London Prentice-Hall of Australia. Printed in the United States of America Prentice-Hall International Inc. Title GV1493. What is the name of this book? 1.S63 793. except for the inclusion of brief quotations in a review. Tokyo Prentice-Hall of Southeast Asia Pte. Ltd.. New Delhi Prentice-Hall of Japan. Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data . Smullyan All rights reserved. Pty. I. Smullyan Copyright © 1978 by Raymond M. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any means. Toronto Prentice-Hall of India Private Ltd. without permission in writing from the publisher. Ltd. Raymond M.by Raymond M. Singapore Whitehall Books Limited... Puzzles..7'3 77-18692 ISBN 0-13-955088-7 What Is the Name of This Book?-The Riddle of Dracula and Other Logical Puzzles..

. whose wise counsels have been invaluable.Dedicated to Linda Wetzel and Joseph Bevando.

.

Logic Puzzles Solutions 9. PORTIA'S CASKET S AND OTHER MYSTERIE S 3 7 14 20 26 36 46 5. Puzzles and Monkey Tricks Solutions 3. How to Avoid Werewolves-And Other 55 62 67 74 82 90 99 110 1 18 124 Practical Bits of Advice Solutions 8. From the Files of Inspector Craig Solutions 7. Bellini o r Cellini? Solutions Part Three � WEIRD TALE S 10. Is Dracula Still Alive? Solutions 1 35 1 42 149 153 158 169 . The Island of Zombies Solutions 12. The Island of Baal Solutions 11. The Mystery of Portia's Caskets Solutions 6. Knights and Knaves Solutions 4.Contents Part One ilLO GICAL RECREATIONS 1. Fooled? 2. Alice i n the Forest o f Forgetfulne s s Solutions Part Two.

LOGIC. Godel' s Discovery 183 200 213 220 225 .Part Four. How to Prove Anything 15. From Paradox to Truth Solutions 16. Logic and Life 14. I S A MANY=S:PLENDORED THING 13.

incidentally. I thank Dorothy Lachmann for her expert handling of production details. I also think Melvin should b e thanked for actually appearing in this book (thereby refuting my proof that he couldn't appear!) . Lenore.My Thanks to _______________ First I wish to thank my friends Robert and Ilse Cowen and their ten-year-old-daughter. Joseph Bevando and Linda Wetzel. who have been heart and soul with this book from its very inception. suspected all along the true answer to the key question of Chapter 4: Does Tweedledoo really exist. It was a pleasure working with O scar Collier and others at Prentice-Hall. who went through this manuscript together and provided many helpful sugges tions. It is my hope that this book will enable her to decide whether she is married to a knight or a knave. Ilene McGrath who first copy-edited the text made many suggestions which I have gratefully adopted. I wish to again mention my two dedicatees. . or is he merely a fabrication of Humpty Dumpty?) I am grateful to Greer and Melvin Fitting (authors of the charming and useful book In Praise of Simple Things) for their kindly interest in my work and for having called it to the attention of Oscar Collier of Prentice-Hall. My dear wife. (Lenore. Mrs. has helped me with many a query. Blanche.

.

• I .

.

I was sick in bed with grippe. 1 925. On the one hand. "I'm waiting for E mile to fool me. Was I Fooled? ____________ My introduction to logic was at the age of six. my mother asked me. didn't II Well. In the morning my brother E mile (ten years my senior) came into my bedroom and said: " Well. "Emile. Late that night. today is April Fool' s Day. didn' t you? Raymond I Yes. Emile I But you expected me to. and the following dialogue ensued: Emile I S o. I recall lying in bed long after the lights were turned out wondering whether or not I had really been fooled. you expected me to fool you.110 Fooled? 1. and I will fool you as you have never been fooled b efore! " I waited all day long for him to fool me. or something. Emile I So I fooled you. " My mother turned to E mile and said. then I did not get what I FOOLED 3 . if I wasn't fooled. will you please fool the child!" E mile then turned to me. Raymond. or flu. did I? Raymond I No. Emile I But I didn't. It happened this way: On April 1. "Why don' t you go to sleep?" I replied. but he didn' t. didn' t you? Raymond I Yes.

"Do you obj ect to telling a little lie every now and again?" Now. (This was Emile' s argument. Was I Lying? _____________ A related incident occurred many years later whe:h I was a graduate student at the University of Chicago. so then. since I didn' t obj ect to that particular lie. but my magic business was slow for a brief period and I had to supplement my income somehow.) But with e qual reason it can be said that if I was fooled.expected. logic requires me to believe I was telling the truth. I guess logic might require me to say that I was telling the truth. So. but the truth! To this day it is not quite clear to me whether I was lying or not. My answer was "No. One of the questions was. I sure felt as though I was lying! Speaking of lying. But at the time. So. hence I was fooled. I decided to try getting a job as a salesman. was I fooled or wasn't I? I shall not answer this puzzle now. now. But I thought to myself that if I truthfully voiced my objection. in what sense was I fooled. since the assumption that I was lying leads to a contradiction. at the time I definitely did obj ect-I particularly object to salesmen lying and misrepresenting their products. " Riding back home after the interview. then it follows that I don 't obj ect to all lies. It embodies a subtle principle which shall b e one of our maj or themes. I asked myself whether I objected to the lie I had given to the sales company. 2. Hence I lied and said "No. then I wouldn' t get the job . I was a pro fessional magician at the time. I had the fol lowing thoughts. we shall return to it in one form or another several times in the course of this book. then I did get what I expected. I must tell you the incident of Bertrand 4 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . " Well. I applied to a vacuum cleaner company and had to take an aptitude te st. hence my "No" answer on the test was not a lie.

What really happened was this: The experimenter stood in the corner of the room to watch the proceedings. E . the banana and string. " The machine showed he was lying." To me. Russell desa cribed Moore'as one of the most truthful people he had ever met. He once asked Moore. An experiment was conducted with a chimpanzee in a room in which a banana was suspended by a string from the center of the ceiling. "Yes. but which he b elieves to be false. The room was empty except for the chimp. I also read somewhere the following incident showing how animals can sometimes dissimulate. " Have you ever lied?" Moore replied. The purpose of the' experiment was to determine whether the chimp was clever enough to make a scaffolding of the boxes. The chimp came over to the corner and anxiously tugged the experimenter by the sleeve indi cating that he wanted him to move. I read of the following incident in a textbook on abnormal psychology. climb up. They decided to give him a lie-detector test. but which one believes to b e false. then I would say he is telling a lie. the chimp suddenly jumped on his shoulders and got the banana. Slowly the experimenter followed the chimp. Russell wrote: "I think this is the only lie Moore ever told! " Th e incident of my experience with the sales company raises the question of whether it is possible for a person to lie without knowing it. Indeed if a person makes a statement which happens to be true. When they came to about the center of the room. The doctors in a mental institution were thinking of releasing a certain schizophrenic patient. the experimenter.Russell and the philosopher G. not which is false. and reach the banana. " No. " In describing this incident. One of the questions they asked him was. I would answer "No. lying means making a statement. and several wooden boxes of various sizes. " Are you Napoleon?" He replied. FOOLED 5 . The banana was too high to reach. Moore.

"Write them down!" The little one said. something which has b een puzzling me. "How did you ever learn the magic words?" 6 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . really. " To my surprise. turn us into lions. I shouldn' t do that. " No. everyone in the world would still turn into a lion. "Well." About a week later I met the eight-year-old. " I replied. so there would b e no one left to say the other magic words to bring us back. 1 want you to tum us into lions anyway. One day 1 came and said. really. there' s no way 1 can tum you b ack." One of them asked. " They thought about this for a while. because there is no way 1 could tum you back again. and so you would tum into lions. " How do you tum us into lions?" I replied. " Smullyan. "Yes?" He said. The Joke Was on Me A fellow graduate student of mine at the University of Chicago had two brothers. and then one of them asked. " 1 replied. then not only you two but every body in the world-including myself-would tum into a lion. one of them said. " But I can't read!" I replied. there' s something I've been wanting to ask you. " Okay. uh." The older one shouted. "No. If I said the first magic words. "1 have a trick in which I could turn you b oth into lions. but the trouble is this.3 . " Aren't there any magic words which would bring us back?" 1 replied: "Yes. And lions can' t talk. writing them down is out of the question. even if they were written down rather than said. there are. " Oh. I would be saying them.. " The little one said. I was a frequent visitor to their house and often did tricks for the children. " They said. aged six and eight. and he said. "What are the magic words?" 1 replied. uh. no. " 1 replied. " If I told you the magic words. "By saying the magic words. " I don't care. " The older one then said. "I want you to turn us into lions!" The little one then asked.

I recall one occasion about 50 years ago when we had some company and had an argument about this problem which seemed to last hours.. the father of the man in the picture. but this man' s father is my father' s son.. 4 . The remarkable thing about this problem is that most people get the wrong answer but insist (despite all argument) that they are right. and in which those who had the right answer just could not convince the others that they were right. " ("This man' s father" means. ) Whose picture was the man looking at? PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS 7 .. Puzzles and onkey Tricks 0 S OME GOOD OLD-TIMERS We will start with some good old-time puzzles which have amused many a generation. I have a few new wrinkles.. of course. but today it seems less widely known. Whose Picture Am I Looking At? ______ This puzzle was extremely popular during my childhood. The problem is this. many of you already know.. "Whose picture are you looking at?" He replied: "Brothers and sisters have I none. Some of these.. but even for those in the know. Someone asked him. A man was looking at a portrait...

Suppose it turns out that the minimum number of socks I must pick in order to be sure of getting at least one pair of the same color is the same as the minimum number I must pick in order to be sure of getting at least two socks of different colors. ___________________________ Suppose. By an immovable post we shall mean a post which cannot b e knocked over by anything. What Happens If an Irresistible Cannonball Hits an Immovable Post? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This is another problem from my childhood which I like very much. Twenty-four red socks and 24 blue socks are lying in a drawer in a dark room. ___________________________ Here is a well-known logic puzzle: Given that there are more 8 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . How many socks are in the drawer? 9. the man had instead answered: " Brothers and sisters have I none. . S o what happens if an irresis� tible cannonball hits an immovable post? 7@ ___________________________ The following is a very simple problem which many of you know. son is my father' s son.5. A _____________________________ new twist on the above problem: Suppose some blue socks and the same number of red socks are in a drawer. What is the minimum number of socks I must take out of the drawer which will guarantee that I have at least two socks of the same color? 8. in the above situation. but this man' s . " Now whose picture is the man looking at? 6 . By an irresistible cannonball we shall mean a cannonball which knocks over everything in its way.

What is the largest possible number of inhabitants of Po dunk? 10 . PUZZLE S AND MONKEY TRICKS 9 . B was the murderer. since B ' s actions had absolutely no effect on the outcome. C was doomed. several days later C died of thirst. since C never did drink the poison put in by A. the following facts are true: (1) No two inhabitants have exactly the same number of hairs. As a result. (3) There are more imhabitants than there are hairs on the head of any one inhabitant. and C . One night they pitched tents. Quite independently of this. hence A would have died even if B had not drilled the hole. The question is. who was the murderer. hence he would have died even if A hadn' t poisoned the water. Who Was the Murderer? ________ This story concerns a caravan going through the S ahara desert. so (without realizing that C ' s water was already poisoned) he drilled a tiny hole in C ' s canteen so that the water would slowly leak out. Our three principle characters are A. B also decided to murder C . A hated C and decided to murder him by putting poison in the water of his canteen (this would be C ' s only water supply) . and that no inhabitant is totally bald. B. A was the real murderer. According to the opposite argument.. once A poisoned the water. (2) No inhabitant has exactly 5 18 hairs. Which argument is correct? At this point I'll tell you the j oke of a woodchopper from the Middle E ast who came looking for a j ob at a lumber camp.inhabitants of New York City than there are hairs on the head of any inhabitant. A or B? According to one argument. does it necessarily follow that there must be at least two inhabitants with exactly the same number of hairs? Here is a little variant of this problem: In the town of Podunk.

however. amazed." The foreman replied. " the Sahara Desert. " How d o you explain this? 12 .a big Indian and a little Indian. here we chop trees. the law compels me to set you free . but the big Indian was not the father of the little Indian. " " Oh yes. How do you explain that? 139 The Clock That Stopped. "I' ve had plenty of practice in the Sahara Forest. " Okay. Once when this happened he 10 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . "I don' t know if this is the kind of job you want. he sometimes forgot to wind. but he had an accurate clock which. "That' s precisely the sort of work I do. " Okay. "You mean. _______ Here is a cute simple old-time puzzle: A man owned no watch. here's an axe-let' s see how long it takes you to . "Fantastic!" cried the foreman. ____________ Two American Indians were sitting on a log.. bam-in two strokes the tree was down. " Of course you are hired. The jury found one of them guilty and the other one not guilty. _ ______ _ Two men were being tried for a murder." replied the wood chopper. " The foreman thought for a moment. chop down this tree here. " The woodchopper said. " The woodchopper went over to the tree-biff. " The woodchopper went over to the tree and felled it with one blow. Another Legal Puz zle. " it is now!" 11. The little Indian was the son of the big Indian.The foreman said. but how did you ever learn to chop like that?" " Oh. The judge turned to the guilty one and said: "This is the strangest case I have ever come across! Though your guilt has been estab lished beyond any reasonable doubts. The foreman.. said." he replied. try that big one over there. Two Indians . " h e said.

" "buffoonery. "1 Well. passed the evening with him. " " lark. then faces due north. however. What color was the bear? B." " merriment. So even if you think you know the answer. "Hey. and hits the bear. when I saw " monkey trick. PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS 11 . " "romps. _________ The interesting thing about this problem is that many people have heard it and know the answer." " heyday. since most portions can hardly be described as monkey tricks." and others." " play at." " pranks. MONKEY TRICKS At first I was undecided what title to give this book." In the next paragraph I came across " play. but I was not too satisfied. " "jocos ity. But the title serves perfectly for the items of this section. I thought of " Recreational Logic. A man is 1 0 0 yards due south of a bear." " gam bade." "mummery. How could he do this without knowing beforehand the length of the trip? 14" Problem of the Bear. maybe I should call this book "Monkey Tricks. 'Italics mine. " D elightful as that title is.went to the house of a friend. " There I came across such choice items as "fun." jollity." " gambols." "drollery. " "frolic. but their reasons for the answer are insufficient. fires his gun due north. went back home. " "Logical Recreations and Diversions. and set his clock." " monkey trick." "tomfoolery. as the reader will soon realize. be sure and consult the solution." " antic. Then I decided to consult Roget's Thesaurus: I looked in the index under "Recreations" and was directed to section 840 entit led "Amusement. He walks 1 00 yards due east. it would have been misleading for this book as a whole." I laughed and said to my wife.

Two American coins add up to thirty cents. An hour later. Which train will be nearer to Boston when they meet? 20. What coins are they? 16. is it more correct to say the yolk is white or the yolk are white? 1 9 . a train leaves from New York to Boston. In the evening. got off at the twenty-fourth floor. A Question of Slope. and walked up one flight. and went to work. _______ Those of you who are interested in questions of good gram matical usage.15. Why did he get off at the twenty-fourth floor instead of the twenty-fifth? 18. yet one of them is not a nickel. Problem of the Two Coins. got into the elevator. ________ A train leaves from Boston to New York. got off at the ground floor. A Question of Grammar. Every morning (except Saturdays and Sun days) he got into the elevator. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ A man lived on the twenty-fifth floor of a thirty-story apart ment building. _________ On a certain house. The two trains are going at exactly the same speed. the two halves of the roof are unequally 12 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Those of you who know anything about Catholicism. A Rate-Time Problem. do you happen to know if the Catholic Church allows a man to marry his widow's sister? 17. he came home.

yet when he crawls c ounter clockwise around that same racetrack it takes him only ninety minutes. "I can' t operate on him. can you figure out in your head how many 9' s he will need? 22. How D o You Explain This? _______ Acertain Mr. Smith and his son Arthur were driving in a car. On which side of the roof would the egg fall? 21. in which country would you bury the survivors? �3. Without using pencil and paper. The old surgeon took a look at him and said. one half slope s downward at an angle of 6 0° and the other half at an angle of 70°. he is my son Arthur! " How d o you explain this? 25. A Question of Intemational Law. The car crashed. He has to order numerals to do the job. ___________ A certain snail takes an hour and a half to crawl clockwise around a certain racetrack. A sign-maker is called to number the houses from 1 to 1 0 0. The Racetrack. How Many 9's? ___________ A certain street contains 1 0 0 buildings. Suppose a rooster lays an egg right on the peak. And Now! ______________________ And now. Why this discrepancy? If an airplane crashes right on the border of the United States and Canada. what is the name of this book? PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS 13 . ____ _ 24.pitched. the father was killed outright and the son Arthur was critically injured and rushed to a hospital.

Now are you convinced? 5. ff the skeptical reader is still not convinced (and I'm sure many of you are not!) it might help if you look at the matter a bit more graphically as follows: (1) This man's father is my father' s son. . A remarkably large number of people arrive at the wrong answer that the man is looking at his own picture. then I am this man' s father. it said "this man's father is my father' s son. " then the answer to the problem would have been " myself. If the second clause of the problem had been. then my father' s son is indeed myself. if I have neither brothers nor sisters. Since this man' s father is myself. and reason as follows: " Since I have no brothers or sisters. " The first statement of this reasoning is absolutely cor-· reet. " But the problem didn't say that. hence this man must be my son. Therefore I am looking at a picture of myself.. Thus the correct answer to the problem is that the man is looking at a picture of his son. 14 ___________________________ The answer to the second problem. But it doesn' t follow that " myself" is the answer to the problem. Substituting the word " myself" for the more cumbersome phrase " my father' s son" we get (2) This man' s father is myself. "Brothers and sisters LOGICAL RECREATIONS . " From which it follows that this man' s father is myself (since my father' s son is myself) . " this man is my father' s son.S OLUTIONS 4 . then my father' s son must be me. They put themselves in the place of the man looking at the picture.

John and Jack." If I pick three socks. " If the problem had been. Thus the existence of an irresistible cannonball is in itself not logically contradictory.have I none. then either they are all of the same color (in which case I cer tainly have at least two of the same color) or else two are of one· color and the third is of the other color. hence there could not exist an irresistible cannonball. ____________________________ The most common wrong answer is "2 5. or you are mistaken. The situation is not really very different than had I asked you: "There are two people. no cannonball could knock it over. so the correct answer is "three." 7. if there existed an immov able post." then the correct answer would have been 25. how do you explain that?" Your best answer would be. so I then have two of the same color. "Either you are lying. John is taller than Jack and Jack is taller than John. but this man's son is my father's son." is that the man is looking at a picture of his father. hence there couldn't exist an immovable post. PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS: S OLUTIONS 15 . "What is the smallest number I must pick in order to be sure of getting at least two socks of dif ferent colors. 8. It is logically impossible that there can exist both an irresistible cannonball and an immovable post. but to assert they both exist is to assert a contradiction. But the problem calls for at least two socks of the same color. ____________________________ The given conditions of the problem are logically contra dictory. then by definition it would knock over any post in its way. nor is the existence of an im movable post in itself contradictory. then by definition. Alternatively. If an irre sistible cannonball should exist. Now. 6. _ __________________________ The answer is four.

My per sonal belief is that if anybody should be regarded as the cause of C' s death. one of the inhabitants of Po dunk must be bald. but the sentence for actual murder is far more 16 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . one man' s opinion is as good as another' s. Then there would have to be 5 2 0 distinct numbers all less than 5 2 0 and none of them e qual to 5 1 8 . " I'm afraid that in a problem of this type.9@ In ___________________________ the first problem. the answer is " yes. the answer is 5 1 8 ! To see this. obviously both men were guilty of intent to murder. (2) if anything. since death by poisoning is likely to be quicker than death by thirst. a legal angle. This is impossible! For the second problem. This is im possible. suppose there were more than 5 1 8 inhabitants. this problem is a real puzzler! It is complicated by the fact that it can be looked at from a moral angle. But then A' s attorney could counter. Incidentally. then there would be 8 million different positive whole numbers each less than 8 million. and a purely scientific angle involving the notion of causation. it was A. assume there are exactly 8 million people in New York. "How can any one in his right mind convict A of murder by poisoning when in fact C never drank any of the poison?" S o. If each inhabitant had a different number of hairs. " For definiteness. B' s actions probably served only to prolong A' s life ( even though this was not his intention) . From a moral angle. Why? 10. ______________________ _ I doubt that either argument can precisely be called " cor rect" or " incorrect. I would point out to the court two things: (1) removing poisoned water from a man is in no sense killing him. hence there are only 5 1 9 numbers other than 5 1 8 which are less than 5 2 0. Indeed. if I were the defense attorney of B.say 5 2 0 . there are exactly 5 2 0 distinct numbers (including zero) less than 5 2 0 .

I think a whole book could be written on this puzzle. ________________________ The big Indian was the mother of the little Indian. From the North Pole. Indeed there is an infinite PUZZLE S AND MONKEY TRICKS: S OLUTIONS 17 . this indeed is one possibility. it must be a polar bear. The usual reason given is that the bear must have been standing at the North Pole. I do not know how the law would decide-perhaps different juries would decide differently. Thus he knew how long he was at his friend's house. so if the bear is standing at the North Pole and the man is 100 yards south of him and walks 100 yards east. Well. As for the scientific aspects of the problem. When he got back home. he then knew what time it really was now. this is not the only solution. he will be facing the North Pole again. The bear must be white. Subtracting from this the time he had spent at his friend's house. _______________________ When the man left his house he started the clock and jotted down the time it then showed. he knew how long the walk back and forth had been. 13. Regarding the legal angle. ____________________ �_ The two defendants were Siamese twins. but not the only one. Adding half of this to the time he left his friend's house. When he got to his friend's house he noted the time when he arrived and the time when he left. But as I said. he looked at the clock. then when he faces north. l 1e 12. all directions are south. so he knew how long he had been away from home. 14. the whole notion of causation presents many problems.drastic.

And so forth for any positive integer n. Of course. that the man is very close to the S outh Pole on a spot where the Polar circle passing through that spot has a circumference of exactly 100 yards. So that is a second solution. There is. It could be. 16. the remote pos sibility that some mischievous human being deliberately transported a brown bear to the North Pole j ust to spite the author of this problem. 1 7. he would walk around that little circle twice and be back where he started. the bear is suffi ciently close to either the North Pole or the S outh Pole to qualify as a polar bear. Then if the man walks east 100 yards. 15 ___________________ The answer is a quarter and a nickel. Thus there is really an infinite number of place s on the earth where the given conditions could be met. and walk east around the circle three times and b e back where he started. Or he could be still a little closer to the S outh Pole at a point where the circumference of the polar circle is one-third of 100 yards. he would walk right around that circle and be right back at the point he started from. in any of these solutions. the man could be still a little closer to the S outh Pole at a point where the polar circle has a circumference of exactly 50 yards. for example. and the bear is standing 100 yards north of him. _______________________ How can a dead man marry anybody? He was a midget and couldn' t reach the elevator button for the twenty-fifth floor. Someone I know (who is obviously not very good at telling jokes) once told this j oke at a party at which I was 18 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . so if he walked east 100 yards. But again.number of solutions. One of them (namely the quarter) is not a nickel. of course.

. ________________________ Obviously the two trains will be at the same distance from Boston when they meet. Twenty. 19. but don' t worry. He began thus: " On the twenty-fifth floor of an apartment building lived a midget. I' m sure it will come to me sooner or later. an hour and a half is the same as ninety minutes. 2 2 .. 20. . There is no discrepancy. . 23. PUZZLES AND MONKEY TRICKS: SOLUTIONS 19 . Actually. 21 . I cannot right now remember the name of this book. 25G ________________________ The surgeon was Arthur Smith' s mother. ________________________ Unfortunately.present. . the yolk is yellow. One would hardly wish to bury the survivors! 24 . " 18 . Roosters don' t lay eggs.

what are B and C? 27. "What did A say?" B replied.· �o Knights and Knaves A. so the stranger could not make out what he said. It is assumed that every inhabitant of the island is either a knight or a knave. C. said. " A said that he is a knave. he is lying!" The question is. 260 _______________________ According to this old problem. "Don' t believe B. "Are you a knight or a knave?" A answered. and others called "knaves" always lie. it immediately 20 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . The stranger than asked B. but rather indistinctly. THE I S LAND O F KNIGHTS AND KNAVE S There is a wide variety of puzzles about an island in which certain inhabitants called " knights" always tell the truth. and C-were standing together in a garden. A stranger passed by and asked A. three of the inhabitants-A. B. " At this point the third man. _______________________ When I came upon the above problem. I shall start with a well�known puzzle of this type and then follow it with a variety of puzzles of my own.

B: Exactly one of us is a knight. he is lying! " Now what are B and C? 28. " What are A and B? 29. The following variant of the problem eliminates that feature. That is to say. each of whom is either a knight or a knave. _______________________ Again we have three people. So the stranger asks B." What are A and B? 30 . A makes the following statement: " At least one of us is a knave.struck me that C did not really function in any e ssential way. asked A. B. Suppose the stranger. C. each of whom is either a knight or a knave. one could tell without C' s testimony that B was lying (see solution) . " What did A say? B replies. "Don' t believe B . B. A. there are only two people. " Either I am a knave or B is a knight. _______________________ Suppose A says. " Then C says. C? KNIGHTS AND KNAVES 21 . What are A. A and B. instead of asking A what he is. " A said that there is one knight among us. " What would you conclude? 31. he was sort of an appendage. the moment B spoke. A and B make the following statements: A: All of us are knaves. "How many knights are among you?" Again A answers indistinctly. _______________________ In this problem. ______________________ Suppose A says. "Either I am a knave or else two plus two e quals five.

___________________ Suppose A says. but B isn' t. _______________________ Suppose instead. B: A and C are of the same type. and C. __ _ _ _ _ __ This is an unusual puzzle.32. B. "I am a knave. An Adventure of Mine. B. B: E xactly one of us is a knave. " Are A and B of the same type?" What does C answer? 36 . Two people are said to be of the same type if they are both knights or both knaves. " S omeone then asks C. A. I 22 LOGICAL RECREATIONS .. moreover it is taken from real life. ___________________ We again have three inhabitants. Once when 1 visited the island of knights and knaves. and C. A and B say the following: A: All of us are knaves. A and B make the following statements: A: B is a knave. A says " B and C are of the same type. _______________________ Again three people A." What are A and B? 34. Can it be determined what B is? Can it be determined what C is? 33. each of whom is a knight or a knave. What is C? 35.

And what is the other one? I can assure you. We are given three people. AND NORMALS An equally fascinating type of problem deals with three types of people: knights. Then you ask the second one whether the first one is a knight. 37 ... knaves. What is the person to whom I addressed the question is he a knight or a knave. You come across two of the inhabitants lazily lying in the sun. You get a (yes. You remember that his first name is either E dwin or E dward. who always lie. C. knaves. I asked one of them. and normals. S o you ask him his first name and he answers "E dward.B. Suppose you visit the island of knights and knaves. and you get a (yes-or-no) answer. You ask one of them whether the other one is a knight. but you cannot remember which. I have given you enough information to solve this problem. and I knew the answer to my question. " What is his first name? B. KNAVE S .or-no) answer. one of whom is a knight. who sometimes lie and sometimes tell the truth. Are the two answers necessarily the same? 38 . who always tell the truth. 39 . Here are some puzzles of mine about knights. KNIGHTS AND KNAVES 23 .. KNIGHTS. Edward or Edwin? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This time you come across just one inhabitant lazily lying in the sun. " Is either of you a knight?" He re sponded.came across two of the inhabitants resting under a tree. A. and normal people.

Prove that at least one of them is telling the truth. knaves.B. each of whom is either a knight. B. Prove that either one of them is telling the truth but is not a knight. and knights of highest rank. __________________ Here is an unusual one: Two people. They make the following statements: A: I am normal. and one normal (but not necessarily in that order) . C: I am not normal. and C? 40. a knave. B: A is not a knight. or a normal. A is a knave. knaves are said to be of the lowest rank. make the following statements: A: B is a knight. A and B. or knave. they make the following statements: 24 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . 4 2. normals of middle rank. A Matter of Rank.one a knave. each of whom is a knight. but is not a knight. __ -'--_______ On this island of knights. What are A. 41 ______________ �-------- This time A and B say the following: B: A: B is a knight. B: That is true. or one of them is lying but is not a knave. and normals. or a normal. I am particularly partial to the following problem: Given two people A.

An ancient empress of Bahava once. KNIGHTS AND KNAVES 25 . o r one o f them is a knight and the other a knave. given any marrie d couple. make the following statements: A: B is of higher rank than C. knaves.B. one a knave. C. or normals. _______________________ Given three people A. A or B?" What does C answer? c. Mr. Then C is asked: " Who has higher rank. one of whom is a knight.A: I am of lower rank than B. B: That' s not true! Can the ranks of either A or B be detennined? Can it b e detennined of either of these statements whether it i s true or false? 43. B: C is of higher rank than A. Mrs. ________________ _______ We first consider a married couple. A. passed a curious decree that a knight could marry only a knave and a knave could marry only a knight. A / My wife is not nonnal. THE ISLAND O F BAHAVA The island of Bahava is a female liberationist island. They make the following statements: Mr.) Thus. (Hence a nonnal can marry only a nonnal. 44. and Mrs. hence the women are also called knights. either they are both nonnal. A. A / My husband is not nonnal. in a whimsical moment. The next three stories all take place on the island of Bahava. and one nonnal.B.

B is a knight. ________________________ Suppose. Mrs. and Mrs. and a knave wouldn' t make the true statement that he is a knave. Therefore A never did say that he was a knave. then C spoke the truth. instead. B is a knight. B / That' s right. and Mr. B. Since C said that B was lying and B was indeed lying. and Mrs. and three of the four people give the following testimony: Mr. " I' m a knave. Mr. and Mrs. Mr. hence 26 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . What are each of the four people. A / My husband is normal. My husband is indeed a knight. So B lied when he said that A said that he was a knave. they had said: Mr. Would the answer have been different? 468 ________________________ This problem concerns two married couples on the island of Bahava. A? 45 . A / My wife is normal." because a knight wouldn' t make the false state ment that he is a knave. They are being interviewed.What are Mr. A / My husband is right. Mrs. A. _______________________ It is impossible for either a knight or a knave to say. Mrs. A / Mr. Hence B is a knave. and which of the three statements are true? S OLUTIONS 26.

29. The first thing to observe is that B and C must be of opposite types.) 27. Therefore A could not have said that there was one knight among them. Given any two statements p. but then A. he is a knight. There fore his statement must be true. which is im possible. ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Suppose A were a knave. q are false. then B must be the knave. being a knave. Therefore A is not a knave. couldn't have made that true statement. then it would be true that there was exactly one knight present.q are true. If the statement " either p or q" should be false. Since A is a knight. though the reasoning is a bit different. For KNIGHTS AND KNAVES: SOLUTIONS 27 . Then the statement " At least one of us is a knave" would be false ( since knaves make false statements) . (It is impos sible to know what A is. then there would b e two knights present. hence they would both be knights. so at least one of them really is a knave. 28. one is a knight and the other a knave. since B contradicts C. then both the statements p. if A were a knave he would also have to be a knight. the statement " either p or q" means that at least one (and possibly both) of the statements p. Thus. if A were a knight. __________ The answer is the same as that of the preceding problem. Thus B is a knave and C is a knight. So of these two. On the other hand. q. So B falsely reported A's statement. hence A would not have lied and said there was only one.is a knight. This problem is a good introduction to the logic of disjunc tion. So A is a knight and B is a knave. and thus B is a knave and C is a knight. Now. if A were a knave.

i. that I will not marry both girls. (2) B is a knight. This means that it is neither true that A is a knave nor that B is a knight. Consider the statement "p or q" (which is short for " either p or q") . Then the above state ment must be false. Then it must be true that it is snowing. if I should say. Therefore A must be a knight. "Either it is raining or it is snowing.that is.B. This is the way " either/or" is used in logic. q must be true (because at least one of them is true. A made a statement of the disjunctive type : " Either I am a knave or B is a knight. As an example of the exclusive use. then it would follow that he is not a knave-which would b e a contradiction. S o if A were a knave. q must be the true one) . suppose it is true that it is either raining or snowing. and is the way it will be used throughout this book. Suppose the state ment happens to be true. Since possibility (1) is false ( since A is a knight) then possibility (2) must be the correct one. " Suppose A is a knave. " I will marry B etty or I will marry Jane. On the other hand. it is both false that it is raining and false that it is snowing. it is sometimes used this way (allowing the possibility that both alternative s hold) and sometimes in the so-called " exclu sive" sense-that one and only one of the conditions holds. Then if p is false. Hence A. the college is certainly not going to exclude you if you had b oth! This is the " inclusive" use of " either/or" and is the one we will constantly employ. so if p is false. . We apply these two principles as follows. 28 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . Therefore his statement is true that at least one of the possibilities holds: (I) A is a knave. B is a knight. but it is false that it is raining. if a college catalogue states that an entering student is required to have had either a year of mathematics or a year of a foreign language. are both knights." then if my statement is incorrect. In daily life. We have thus established that A is a knight. e.example. " it is understood that the two possibilities are mutually exclusive. For example. Another important property of the disjunction rela tion " either this or that" is this. if I say.

Hence his statement was false. Thus A. KNIGHTS AND KNAVES: SOLUTIONS 29 . would have made a false statement. was either mistaken or lying. Thus A. since the first clause that A is a knave is true. a knight. _______________________ To begin with. Now. Then A and B would both be knaves. which is impossible.30 . 31. I. a knave. ______�_______________ The only valid conclusion is that the author of this problem is not a knight. Therefore B must b e a knight. On the other hand. The fact is that neither a knight nor a knave could possibly make such a statement. hence I am not a knave either. If A were a knight he would have to be a knave. so C would be a knight (since there is at least one knight among them) . suppose B were a knave. if A were a knave. I can assure you I wasn't mistaken. This would mean that there was exactly one knight among them. I would like to testify that I have told the truth at least once in my life. would have made a true statement. so in fact there is at least one knight among them. then the statement that either A is a knave or that two plus two e quals five would be false. which is impos sible. since it is neither the case that A is a knave nor that two plus two e quals five. for if he were a knight. hence B ' s statement would b e true. Therefore the conditions of the problem are contra dictory (just like the problem of the irresistible cannonball and the immovable post) . A must b e a knave. Hence it follows that I am not a knight. which is e qually impossible. If A were a knight. Therefore. We would thus have the impossibility of a knave making a true statement. then the statement that either A is a knave or that two plus two e quals five would be true. So A is a knave. For the sake of the records. then it would be true that all three are knaves and hence that A too is a knave. the author of the problem.

and C is a knave. then C is a knave. 30 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . Thus if A is a knight. Then his statement that B is a knave is false. hence B is a knight. Therefore A is a knave. This only knave must b e A. To begin with. so is C. If B were a knight. Then it is true that exactly one of them is a knave. so B is then a knave. A must be a knave for the same reasons as in the preceding problem. _______________________ It cannot b e determined what B is. then A' s statement would be true. B is a . A can't be a knight or his statement would be true.knight. Hence B is also a knave.B are both knaves.We now know that A is a knave and that B is a knight. Since B is a knight. in which case he would have to b e a knave. Hence B's statement that A and C are of the same type is false. either B is a knight or a knave. Hence C must be a knave (since A is a knight) . 33. then C must b e a knight. if B is a knave. Then his statement that B is a knave must be true. 34. Thus the answer is that A is a knave. So if B is a knight. So in either case. C must b e a knight. This knight must be B. So A. 32. On the other hand. his statement is true. suppose A is a knave. hence C must be a knave. so A and C are of different types. so C would be a knight. ____________________ --- To begin with. ___________________ Suppose A is a knight. Suppose he is a knight. hence also there is at least one knight among them. Now. since all three can't be knaves (as we have seen) . Hence also his statement is false. On the other hand. so there is exactly one knight among them. but it can be proved that C is a knight.

So C. kn 35 . is a knight. being a knave. I knew the true answer to my question Suppose the speaker. you must use the information I gave you that after the speaker's response." If C is a knave. C answers "Yes. C must be a knave. Then B. b eing of a different type than C. " If C is a knave. So C.call him A-had answered "Yes. For it could be that A was a knight and truthfully answered "Yes" (which would be truthful. We have shown that regardless of whether A is a ight or a knave.Hence B's statement is true that A and C are of the same typ e . in which case A would have falsely answered " Yes" (which would indeed be KNIGHTS AND KNAVES: SOLUTIONS 31 . Then B. This means that C must be a knave ( since A is) . If C is a knight. being a knight. then B. _______________________ To solve this problem. since at least one-namely A-was a knight) . so he will answer " Yes." 36 . then B is a knave. must lie and say " Yes. C are of different types. hence he is of the same type as A. hence is of a different type than A. Hence C is a knave. must lie about A and C being of different types. If C is a knight. Then C. " Thus in both cases. then B is also a knave (since he is the same type as C) . C really are of the same type. so C being truthful must answer " Yes. ---- fm afraid we can solve this problem only by analysis into ca ses. hence is of a different type than A. then B is also a knight. being a knave. or it could be that both of them were knaves. " Could I have then known whether at least one of them was a knight? Certainly not. hence is of the sam e type as A. Case One: A is a knight. must answer " Yes. " Case Two: A is a knave.

hence C is the knight. Therefore A cannot be normal. then the knight will answer "No. then they will both answer "Yes.false since neither was a knight). 32 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . because a knight would never say that he is normal. Hence A is a knave." 38. Suppose A were normal. soB must be normal (he can't be a knave since A is). to a little horseplay. Then B' s statement is false. This leaves C a knave. 37. occasionally. butB can't be normal (since A is). then again they will both answer "Yes. he couldn't have truthfully answered "No. Therefore A must have answered "No. From this it follows that he was lying. ThenB's statement would be true. So if A had answered "Yes" I would have had no way of knowing. hence he is a knave. 39. I ______________________ _ feel entitled. A cannot be a knight. But I told you that I did know after A's answer. Thus A is the knave. Since his answer "No" is false. But a knave cannot say that he is not normal (because a knave really isn't normal). So his name is Edwin. _______________________ To begin with. B is the normal one." so A is a knave. From this it follows that he was lying in the sun." The reader can now easily see what A and the other call him B-must be: If A were a knight. so we have a contradiction." If they are both knaves." and the knave will also answer "No. The vital clue I gave you was that the man was lazily lying in the sun. so B is a knight. then there is at least one knight present. Hence A is a knave and B is a knight. So A is a knave or is normal. henceB is a knight or a normal. they are." If one is a knight and the other a knave. _______________________ Yes. If they are both knights.

hence he is not of lower rank than B. because it can' t be true that a knight is of lower rank than anyone else. because B can' t be a knight if he isn' t telling the truth. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ We shall show that if B is telling the truth then he isn' t a knight. then B is telling the truth but isn' t a knight. Thus if A is telling the truth then A is a person who is telling the truth but isn' t a knight. But B must b e telling the truth.40 . Now. A can' t be a knight. We shall prove: (1) If he is. (1) Suppose A is telling the truth. S o in this case B is telling the truth but isn' t a knight. The interesting thing about this problem is that it is im� possible to know whether it is A who is telling the truth but isn' t a knight or whether it is B who is telling the truth but isn' t a knight. 42. 4 1 . So in this case. hence A is certainly not telling the truth. But A is certainly lying about B. (1) Suppose B is telling the truth. all we can prove is that at least one of them has that property.. Hence B is telling the truth. so A isn? t a knight. (2) If he isn't. Then B really is a knight. Then B isn' t a knight. A is lying but isn' t a knave. and if he isn' t telling the truth then A is lying but isn' t a knave. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ To begin with. hence B is not a knight. Then A is a knave. Then A is not really a knave. (2) Suppose A is not telling the truth. Then B must also be a knave (for KNIGHTS AND KNAVE S : SOLUTIONS 33 . (2) Suppose B is not telling the truth. S o in this case B is telling the truth but isn' t a knight. Either A is telling the truth or he isn' t. since A can' t be a knight (because A is not telling the truth) . then A is telling the truth but isn't a knight. suppose A is a knave.. Then his statement is false.

if he weren' t, then A would be of lower rank than B) . So if A is a knave, so is B. But this is impossible because B is contradicting A, and two contradictory claims can' t both be false. Therefore the assumption that A is a knave leads to a contradiction. Therefore A is not a knave. Hence A must b e normal. Now, what about B? Well, if he were a knight, then A (being normal) actually would b e of lower rank than B, hence A' s statement would be true, hence B' s statement false, and we would have the impossibility of a knight making a false statement. Thus B is not a knight. Suppose B were a knave. Then A' s statement would be false, hence B ' s would b e true, and we would have a knave making a true statement. Therefore B can' t be a knave either. Hence B is normal. Thus A and B are both normaL So also, A' s statement is false and B' s statement is true. S o the problem admits of a complete solution.

43.

Step 1 : We first show that from A's statement if follows that C cannot be normal. Well, if A is a knight then B really is of higher rank than C, hence B must be normal and C must be a knave. So in this case, C is not normal. Suppose A is a knave. Then B is not really of higher rank than C, hence B is of lower rank, so B must be normal and C must be a knight. S o in this case, C again is not normal. The third possible case is that A is normal, in which case C certainly isn't (since only one of A, B , C is normal) . Thus C is not normal. Step 2: By similar reasoning, it follows from B ' s state ment that A is not normal. Thus neither A nor C is normal. Therefore B is normal. Step 3: Since C is not normal, then he is a knight or a knave. Suppose he is a knight. Then A is a knave (since B is normal) hence B is of higher rank than A. So C, being a knight, would truthfully answer, " B is of higher rank." On the other hand, suppose C is a knave. Then A must be a

34

LOGICAL RECREATIONS

knight, so B is not of higher rank than A. Then C, being a knave, would lie and say, " B is of higher rank than A." S o regardless of whether C i s a knight o r a knave, h e answers that B is of higher rank than A.

44.

Mr. A cannot be a knave, because then his wife would be a knight and hence not normal, so Mr. A' s statement would have been true. Similarly Mrs. A cannot be a knave. There fore neither is a knight either (or the spouse would then be a knave) , so they are both normal (and both lying) .

45 . 46 .

____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

For the second problem, the answer is the same. Why?

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____

It turns out that all four are normal, and all three state ments are lies. First of all, Mrs. B must be normal, for if she were a knight her husband would be a knave, hence she wouldn' t have lied and said he was a knight. If she were a knave, her husband would be a knight, but then she wouldn' t have told the truth about this. Therefore Mrs. B is normal. Hence also Mr. B is normal. This means that Mr. and Mrs. A were both lying. Therefore neither one is a knight, and they can' t both be knaves, so they are both normal.

KNIGHTS

AND KNAVES: SOLUTIONS

35

Alice in the Forest . �O of Forgetf ulness

�

**A. THE LION AND THE UNI C ORN
**

When Alice entered the Forest of Forgetfulness, she did not forget everything; only certain things. She often forgot her name, and the one thing she was most likely to forget was the day of the week. Now, the Lion and the Unicorn were frequent visitors to the forest. These two are strange ' creatures. The Lion lies on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wed nesdays and tells the truth on the other days of the week. The Unicorn, on the other hand, lies on Thursdays, Fri days, and S aturdays, but tells the truth on the other days of the week,

47 .

__

One day Alice met the Lion and the Unicorn resting under a tree. They made the following statements:

�

_ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

**Lion / Yesterday was one of my lying days. Unicorn / Yesterday was one of my lying days too.
**

From these two statements, Alice (who was a very bright girl) was able to deduce the day of the week. What day was it?

36

LOGICAL RECREATIONS

48 0

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ ____ __

**On another occasion Alice met the Lion alone. He made the following two statements:
**

(1) I lied yesterday. (2) I will lie again two days after tomorrow.

What day of the week was it?

49 0

_ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____

On what days of the week is it possible for the Lion to make the following two statements:

(1 ) I lied yesterday. (2) I will lie again tomorrow.

50.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ___

On what days of the week is it possible for the Lion to make the following single statement: "I lied yesterday and I will lie again tomorrow. " Warning! The answer is not the same as that of the preceding problem!

B. TWEEDLEDUM AND TWEEDLED E E

During one month the Lion and the Unicorn were absent from the Forest of Forgetfulness. They were elsewhere, busily fighting for the crown. However, Tweedledum and Tweedledee were fre quent visitors to the forest. Now, one of the two is like the Lion, lying on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays and telling the truth on the other days of the week. The other one is like the Unicorn; he lies on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays but tells the truth the other days of the week. Alice didn't know which one was like the Lion and which

ALICE IN THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNES S

37

one was like the Unicorn, To make matters worse, the brothers looked so much alike, that Alice could not even tell them apart (except when they wore their embroidered collars, which they seldom did) , Thus poor Alice found the situation most confusing indeed! Now, here are some of Alice' s adventures with Tweedledum and Tweedledee,

510

______________________ _

**One day Alice met the brothers together and they made the following statements:
**

First One / I'm Tweedledum. Second One / I' m Tweedledee.

Which one was really Tweedledum and which one was Tweedledee?

520

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

**On another day of that same week, the two brothers made the following statements:
**

First One / I' m Tweedledum. Second One / If that' s really true, then I'm Tweedle dee!

Which was which?

5 3.

On another occasion, Alice met the two brothers, and asked one of them, "Do you lie on Sundays?" He replied " Yes! ' Then she asked the other one the same question, What did he answer?

38

LOGICAL RECREATIONS

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ O n another occasion. They made the following statements: First One / If I' m Tweedledum then he' s Tweedledee . One day Alice came across both brothers. instead. " Who was speaking? 56 . he had said: " I am lying today or I am Tweedledee. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Suppose. the brothers made the following statements: First One / (1) I lie on Saturdays. He made the following statement: "I am lying today and I am Tweedledee." Would it have been possible to determine who it was? 57. Second One / I will lie tomorrow. What day of the week was it? c. --'-_ __ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ One day Alice came across just one of the brothers. Second One / If he' s Tweedledee then I ' m Tweedledum.5 5. (2) I lie on Sundays. Is it possible to determine who is who? Is it possible to determine the day of the week? ALICE IN THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS 39 .54.

" 40 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . Second One / The Lion lie d yesterday. . the two brothers made the following statements: First One / Today is not Sunday. First One / Tomorrow is one of Tweedledee' s lying days. A Mystery Resolved! __ _______ On this great occasion. "I' ve found the rattle. What is the solution? c. Even a baby couldn' t tell the difference . Second One / In fact. " it looks as good as the day it was made. well. and I've had it re stored.Old Nursery Rhyme " Well. indeed. The problem was now com pletely solved. For Tweedledum said Tweedledee Had spoiled his nice new rattle. Doesn't it look as good as new?" "Yes. Just then flew down a monstrous crow. Alice clapped her hands in joy. Alice resolved three grand mys teries. today is Monday. (2) which of the two was Tweedledum.58. Which frightened both the heroes so They quite forgot their quarrel. (3) whether Tweedledum was like the Lion or the Unicorn in his lying habits (a fact she had long desired to know!) Well. She came across the two brothers grinning under a tree. WHO OWNS THE RATTLE? Tweedledum and Tweedledee Agreed to have a battle. As black as a tar-barrel. admiringly. " triumphantly exclaimed the White King to Alice one day. " replied Alice . She hoped that on this encounter she would find out three things: (1) the day of the week.

"I shouldn't have to tell you that! " cried the King impatiently. you know." said Alice as cheerfully as she could. "I know the rhyme well. But because Tweedledum said it. and I b elieve it." "Then what's the problem?" cried the King. for all I know. Will you please do this for me?" "Who is the rightful owner?" asked Alice. Now all my good intentions are wasted. it does not mean that it is necessarily true. "B ecause it says quite explicitly in the rhyme-which I'm sure you know-that Tweedledum said that Tweedle dee had spoiled his nice new rattle. of course!" "Not necessarily. "That not very logical." continued the King. " I never thought of that. really." continued the King. it may be the other way around-maybe it was Tweedledum who spoiled Twee dle dee's new rattle. "I grant that what the rhyme says is true. more puzzled than ever. Therefore Tweedledum did indeed say that Tweedledee had spoiled his rattle. Indeed. somewhat more gently. " "Oh. " "Anyway. "is that even a grownup couldn't tell the difference-not even the world's greatest rattle expert." replied Alice . " Give me the rattle and I will try to find out who is the true owner. "Never mind. " we'll imagine it said. who was in a mood for a little argument. dear." explained Alice. Of course a baby couldn't tell the difference-one would hardly ex pect a baby to do that!" "What you should have said." replied the King disconsolately. so the rattle b elongs to Tweedledum. The important thing is to restore the rattle to its rightful owner. "Very simple."What do you mean even a baby?" cried the White King sternly. P erhaps Tweedledum said it on one of his lying days. "Why not?" inquired Alice." The poor king looked so dejected. I've had some experience with liars and ALICE IN THE FORE ST OF FORGETFULNESS 41 . Alive thought he would cry.

f the fo. She went to.ught fo." replied Alice.n to.t remember the day o.und here. and asked the seco." No. his wo.urnfully.ughly explained the situatio.me time later. who.uld.w. frighten the bro.w to.st re markable part is that altho. black cro.u o. To. Alice did no.ut o. "Tweedledee o. " "I ho.ther bro. Alice picked up the bro.r Tweedledum who. we still do.f the bro.wns the rattle?" He replied. o.wns the rattle. find at least o. " replied the King.w?" "No. she suddenly came acro. "Who. handle them.u knew to. " " Very true.ping to. So.ther bro. its rightful owner. I do. so. him. they began slamming and banging away at each o.ugh yo. 59.w if it is Tweedledee o.th o.ss bo. I can easily have the rattle fixed again. the Fo. her great delight.truth-tellers aro.ne.ke the rattle again.w! Who. give it. and I have go.u?" He replied. no.ken rattle and ran o.f Alice's actual adventures with the rattle.red the rattle to.rest o.r a while. To who. " True to.f ho.wns the rattle.f them grinning under a tree.f Fo. " but what do.thers.uld Alice give the rattle? 60.blem. ______________________ _ Alice resto.rest as fast as she co. the first o.m sho.ne o. "Tweedledee.o. no. pro.m to. are yo. She tho.nd o.t kno. S everal days later.k the rattle and went into. "The mo.rd.!" replied the King mo.thers.ro. but she was sure it was no. No.f the knack o. This time. really o.tten a little o.pe So.f the week.w came to." replied the King. she again came across the White King. the o.t Sunday. " She tho. no. ho. "Very interesting.ther.rget fulness.ne and sternly said: "I want the truth no. the White King had the rattle 42 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . _______________________ She to.w I shall tell yo.

she wondered just what were the chances that the speaker owned the rattle. Alice went over to him and asked. "I know what you are thinking. As a matter of fact. Alice asked the first one. Alice went trepidly into the forest. " Do you own this rattle?" He replied "Yes.. "The true owner of this rattle is lying today. ALICE IN THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS 43 . "Who really owns this rattle?" He quizzically re plied. fearing that the battle might still be on. and Alice gave one of them the rattle. the brothers had called a temporary truce. "Do you own this rattle?" The second one answered. "The owner of this rattle is telling the truth today. Several days later Alice again came upon just one of the brothers lying under a tree." Then Alice asked the second one. the one I am about to relate was the most eerie.p erfectly restored and gave it to Alice some days later. and the reply was. FROM THE MOUTH OF THE JABBERWO CKY Of all the adventure s Alice had with the Tweedle brothers in the Forest of Forgetfulness. Did Alice give the rattle to the first or the second one? D. and Alice came across just one of them resting wearily under a tree. " What are the chances that the speaker owns the rattle? 6 1 . who happened to be standing nearby. " and the chances are exactly thirteen out of fourteen! " How did Humpty Dumpty ever arrive at those numbers? 62 e __________ __ _______ This time Alice came across both brothers together. and the one Alice remembered most vividly. She asked the same que stion. " Alice pondered over this. " said Humpty Dumpty.

" Still. Most people don' t know it. and that she really may not have figured out the day of the week when she thought she had. but Tweedledee and Tweedledum actually have a third brother. but it is for the two which follow after that. then his name really is Tweedledoo. he looked like he was Tweedledee or Tweedledum. "Perhaps the whole thing is only a fabrication of Humpty D umpty. Alice pondered deeply over these troublesome thoughts Finally. "It certainly sounds a most unlikely tale to me. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Alice came across j ust one brother alone in the forest. she may not have restored the rattle to its rightful owner after all. I ask the reader to assume two things: (1) if there really is an individual other than Tweedledee or Tweedledum who looks indistin guishable from them. she asked Humpty D umpty a sensible question. There are four different accounts of j ust what hap pened next."On what days does Tweedledoo lie?" "Tweedledoo always lies. I wish to tell you a great secret. (2) if such an individual exists. At least. O f even greater practical im portance. He lives in a far-off land but occasionally comes around to these parts." Alice thought to herself." replied Humpty Dumpty. He looks as much like Tweedledee and Twee dledum as Tweedledee and Tweedledum look like each other. Alice was haunted by the thought that it might be true. I might remark that the second assumption is not necessary for the solution of the next mystery. and I shall tell you all of them. 63.his name is Tweedledoo. then he really does lie all the time. 44 LOGICAL RECRE ATIONS . the possibility that there really was a third one would mean that all her past inferences were invalidated. . " This information disturbed Alice dreadfully! For one thing. The First Version. Alice walked away in troubled silence.It started this way: One day Humpty D umpty met Alice and said: " Child.

She asked the first one: " Who really are you?" She got the following replies: First One / "I' m Tweedledoo!' Second One / " Yes. and today i s one of my lying days . " What do you make of this version? 66 . does Tweedledoo really exist or not? Well.. Alice came across j ust one of them. and then asked him. " The question i s .. He made the following statement: " Today is one of my lying days.Alice told him Humpty Dumpty' s story. Alice came across (what seemed to be) both brothers. what is the real truth of the matter. __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ According to this version.. The Fourth Version. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ According to this version. Alice met (what seemed to b e) both brothers on a weekday. __________ According to this version. The Third Version. does Tweedledoo really exist. o r is he just a fabrication of Humpty Dumpty? 64 . I have given you four conflicting ALICE IN THE FORE ST OF FORGETFULNESS 45 . What do you make of this version? Epilogue. Second One / I exist. The S econd Version. " Who are you really?" He gave the enigmatic reply. She asked. " Does Tweedledoo really exist?" She got the following replies: First One / Tweedledoo exists. he is! " What do you make of this version? 65 . " I am either Tweedledee or Tweedledum. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Now.

to tell you the truth. Alice is always truthfuL But the four versions of what hap pened after that were all told to me by the Jabberwocky. Hence it is Monday. The second statement implies that it is not Thursday. only on 46 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . From this information. I know that the Jabberwocky lies on the same days as the Lion (Monday. because 1 am lazy and sleep all day Sat urdays and Sundays. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The lion' s first statement implies that it is Monday or Thursday. There fore the only day they can both say that is on Thursday. Now. How come four versions? Well. Tuesday. Wednesday) and he told me these stories on four consecutive weekdays. ____ __ __ __ __ __ ___ __ The only days the Lion can say "I lied yesterday" are Mondays and Thursdays. the reader should have no dif ficulty in ascertaining whether Tweedledoo really exists or whether Humpty Dumpty was lying.) They were told to me in the same order as I recounted them.versions of what really happened. 49 . 48 . the conversation between Alice and Humpty Dumpty really happened: Alice told me this herself. I heard them all from the mouth of the Jabber wocky. Does Alice know whether Tweedledoo exists? S OLUTIONS 47 . Now. and . The only days the Unicorn can say " I lied yesterday" are Thursdays and Sundays. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ On no day of the week is this possible! Only on Mondays and Thursdays could he make the first statement. I didn't invent the se stories myself. (1 know they were weekdays.

then the first one really is Tweedledum. for on Tuesdays that statement is true. Y are true separately. If __ __ __ __ __ __ _ __ __ __ the first statement is true. S o there i s n o day h e could say both. the only day of the week it could be true that the Lion lied yesterday and wiIl lie again tomorrow is Tue sday (this is the one and only day which occurs between two of the Lion' s lying days) . but the Lion doesn't make true statements on Tues days.. if the single statement "X and Y' is true. since the brothers never lie on the same day. If the first statement is false. 50 .Wednesdays and Sundays could he make the second. So the first one is Tweedledum and the second one is Tweedledee. hence the Lion' s state ment is false. 51. then it of course follows that X. given any two statements X. Therefore it is not Tuesday. This is a very different situation! It well illustrates the difference between making two statements separately and making one statement which is the conjunction of the two. Therefore both state ments must be true. They can' t both be false. Therefore either both statements are true or both statements are false. ALICE IN THE FOREST OF FORGETFULNESS: SOLUTIONS 47 . so the Lion is lying. the day of the encounter must be Sunday. N ow. but if the conjunction "X and Y ' is false. hence the second one is Tweedledee and the second statement is also true. Indeed. Y. Therefore the day must be either Monday or Wednesday. So the day the Lion said that couldn' t be Tue sday. it only follows that at least one of them is false. and hence the second statement is also false. Also. then the first one is actually Tweedledee and the second one is Tweedledum.

______ ____ ______ __ __ __ __ ____ _____ Yes it would. The second one is telling the truth on this day (since the first o ne is lying). The only one of these days in which it is true that he will lie tomorrow is Wednes day. so it is now Monday. So he is Tweedledum. Therefore the first one does not lie on Saturdays. H he were lying today. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The first answer was clearly a lie. so the first one must be false. Tuesday. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Statement (2) of the first one is clearly false. " "I am Tweedledee" must be false. which is a contradiction). " 54. The first clause ("I am lying today" ) is true. then the first clause of the disj unction would be true. hen ce state ment (1) is false too ( since it is uttered on the same day). Therefore at least one of the two clauses " I am lying today. 55. then he would be lying today.52. hence the event must have taken place on a weekday. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ This is a horse of a very different color! The second one' s statement is certainly true. we are given that the day of the week is different from that of the last problem. Therefore it cannot be that both statements are true. Therefore the other one must have answered truthfully and said "No. 56. hence the whole statement 48 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . so it is a weekday. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ___________ His statement is certainly false (for if it were true. so the second one lies on Saturdays. 53. So the day is Wednesday. or Wednesday. Now. therefore the second clause must be false. Therefore the first one is Tweedledee and the second is Tweedledum.

Hence today is Friday. Since he is not lying today. The second speaker must be lying (since it is not Sunday). Therefore today cannot be Saturday. Now. it ALICE IN THE FORE ST OF FORGETFULNESS: S OLUTIONS 49 .would be true. Saturday. The second one says today is Monday. Also. T o begin with. hence his name is not really Tweedledee. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Suppose the first one told the truth. So his statement is true: either he is lying today or he is Tweedledee. Then the rattle belongs to Tweedledee. Therefore today cannot be Sunday. so today is Friday. Both statements are obviously true. hence he is like the Unicorn. or Sunday. and (since it is not Sunday). We have already ruled out Sunday and Monday. Saturday. so it is not Monday either. 58. Friday. so it is a Sunday. This means that yesterday was Thursday. This proves everything. hence he is Tweedledum. 57 . the second one is therefore lying today. So the first one is telling the truth. said so). so today must be Friday or Saturday. hence yesterday was really one of the Lion's truthful days. which is a Friday. Sunday. then he is Tweedledee. or Monday. Next we observe that tomorrow is one of Tweedle� dee' s lying days (since the first one. which is a contradiction. the second one has also told the lie that the Lion lied yesterday. but he is lying. it is impossible on a Sunday for either brother to lie and say that it is not Sunday. It is not possible to determine who is who.. Therefore he is telling the truth today. 59. From this it further follows that Tweedledee lies on Saturdays. who is speaking the truth. the first one is telling the truth today.

then he must be the owner. then both brothers are telling the truth today. he is lying today. Hence the first speaker is Tweedledee and should get the rattle. 61e __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Humpty Dumpty was right! Suppose the speaker is lying. 62. Then the owner of the rattle is not telling the truth today. Suppose on the other hand that his statement is false. So in either case. Then the owner of the rattle is indeed telling the truth today. but if it is a Sunday." Therefore they were both lying or both telling the truth. Then the rattle belongs to Tweedledum. if it is a weekday. hence cannot be the speaker. then the speaker is defi nately the owner. But suppose the speaker is telling the truth. Therefore the chances are 6% out of 7 -or 1 3 out of 1 4-that he is the owner. hence again cannot be the speaker. Then the owner of the rattle is telling the truth today. If it is a weekday. Then the owner of the rattle is lying today. But I told you she did know." then one of them would have been telling the truth and the other lying. Had the second one answered "Yes. the rattle belongs to the first speaker. and it 50 LOGICAL RECREATIONS . If it is Sunday. 60 0 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The chances are zero! Suppose his statement is true. Then again the first one owns the rattle. In summary. then the chances are even that he is the owner. Suppose the first one lied. Then also the second one told the truth so is really Tweedledee. hence the second one didn't answer "Yes.is Twee dledum. hence Alice would have no way of knowing who owned the rattle. hence must be the speaker. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The clue here is that Alice did know who to give it to. This means they were both telling the truth. so either could be the owner.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Yes.must have been Sunday.) Since the second statement is true and it is not Sunday. so he must be Tweedledoo. (2 ) is true (since his claim on this day is false). hence (2 ) would be true. 65. If his claim were true. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The first one can't really be Tweedledoo (since Tweedledoo always lies). so he is Tweedledee or Tweedledum. which is im possible. certainly I have never met anyone who didn't exist. (I think D escartes pointed out that anyone who says he exists is making a true statement. Therefore he is neither Tweedledee nor Tweedledum. If the second one were Tweedledee or Tweedledum. but he is lying. 66 . 64. his statement is certainly true. Then the second one is also lying. ALICE IN THE FORE ST OF FORGETFULNESS: SOLUTIONS 51 . Alice was j ust talking to him. Therefore his claim is false. The speaker claimed that the following statements are both true: (1) He is either Tweedledee or Tweedledum (2) He is lying today. then (1) and (2 ) would both be true. so it must be (1) that is not true. which would be a contradiction. So Alice gave it to the first one. Therefore the second one must be Tweedledoo. Now. then the first statement must be false. 63 . Tweedledoo must exist. ________________ __ This version is just simply false! __ ________________ Whoever the second one is. so (1) and (2 ) cannot both be true. then Tweedledee and Tweedledum would be lying on the same day.

then Alice should have no difficulty in realizing that all these "Tweedledoo fears" were ground less. So Tweedledoo doe sn't really exist! (I'm quite sure. hence must be the true one. Also none of the stories was told on a Saturday or Sunday. _ _ _ _ _- The third version of the story is definitely false.So if this version of the story is correct. that had Tweedledoo really existed. Tweedledoo doesn't exist. ) As for Alice. Lewis Carroll would have known about it. Solution to the Epilogue. 52 LOGICAL RE CREATIONS . since the fourth version is the only one which really took place. So the last version was told on a Thursday. incidentally. The only way these four storie s can be fitted into four consecutive days satisfying these conditions is that the third version was told on a Wednesday.

.

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On the lid of each casket was an inscription to help the suitor choose wisely. and lead-inside one of which was Portia' s portrait. She had the following inscriptions put on the caskets. The suitor was to choose one of the caskets. THE FIRST TALE 67a. In __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Shakespeare' s Merchant of Venice Portia had three caskets-gold. but simply on the basis of in telligence. Now. silver. at most one was true.ystery of C::d)o Portia's Casket s A. Gold THE PORTRAIT IS IN THIS CASKET Silver THE PORTRAIT IS NOT IN THIS CASKET Lead THE PORTRAIT IS NOT IN THE GOLD CASKET Portia explained to the suitor that of the three statements. then he could claim Portia as his bride. suppose Portia wished to choose her husband not on the basis of virtue. Which casket should the suitor choose? THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA'S CASKETS 55 . and if he was lucky enough (or wise enough) to choose the one with the portrait.f5 The .

He was really quite hright enough to figure out this problem too. " When the young Portia grew to young womanhood. the problem wasn't really that difficult. turned her over his knee. one day. Which casket contains the portrait? Epilogue _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ As fate would have it. B. so they married and lived quite happily-at least for a while. she was both clever and b eautiful.67b o ____________________ _ Portia's suitor chose correctly. THE PORTRAIT IS NOT IN THE SILVER CASKET Silver THE PORTRAIT IS NOT IN THIS CASKET Lead THE PORTRAIT IS IN THIS CASKET Portia explained to the suitor that at least one of the three statements was true and that at least one of them was false. The husband took Portia home. This time she had the following inscriptions put on the caskets: Gold ----. Then. j ust like her 56 PORTIA'S CASKETS . THE S E COND TALE Portia and her husband did. the first suitor turned out to b e Portia's ex-husband. Portia had the following thoughts: "Though my husband showed some intelligence in choosing the right casket. " So she forthwith divorced her husband and decided to get a clev erer one. and Portia never had any foolish ideas again. gave her a good sound spanking. So they were remarried. as a matter of fact. live happily ever after. Surely. They had a daughter Portia II-henceforth to b e called "Portia. I could have made the problem harder and gotten a really clever husband.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ this test each lid contained two statements. both statements were false. THE SILVER CASKET Which casket contains the portrait? 68b . She also decided to select her husband by the casket method. Lead: :: (1) � __ THE PORTRAIT IS NOT IN THIS CASKET (1) THE PORTRAIT IS NOT IN THE GOLD CASKET THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA'S CASKETS 57 . and on the third. Portia ex plaine d that on one of the lids. and Portia explained that no lid contained more than one false statement.d : -: (1) _ __ THE PORTRAIT IS NOT IN HERE (2) THE ARTIST OF THE PORTRAIT IS FROM VENICE (2) THE ARTIST OF THE PORTRAIT IS REALLY FROM FLORENCE (2) THE PORTRAIT IS REALLY IN . on another. one statement was true and one was false. Again each casket had two sentences inscrib ed on the lid. Lea. The S econd Test. The suitor had to pass two te sts in order to win her. 68a" In The First Test. both statements were true. he was taken into another room in which there were three more caskets. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ If the suitor passed the first test.mommy.

INTRODUCING BELLINI AND CELLINI The suitor of the last tale passed both te sts and happily claimed Portia II as his bride. She went back to her grandmother' s idea of having only one state ment inscribed on each casket rather than two. 69a. But she introduced the following new wrinkle: She explained to the suitor that each casket was fashioned by one of two famous Florentine craftsmen. Portia used a dagger which was placed in one of the three caskets. the other two caskets were empty. then he could take the next test. The First Test. whereas Bellini put only true inscriptions on his caskets. She also decided to choose her husband by the casket method.Which casket contains the portrait? C . The suitor had to pass three tests in order to win her! The tests were quite ingenious. Instead of using a portrait. he always put a false inscription on it. __ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ In this unusual test the suitor (if he guessed blindly) would have a two out of three rather than a one out of three chance . They lived happily ever after and had a lovely daughter Portia III-henceforth to b e called "Portia.Cellini or Bellini. " When she grew up to young womanhood. Whenever Cellini fashioned a casket. If the suitor could avoid the casket with the dagger. The inscrip tions on the caskets were as follows: Gold Silver Lead ---� AT MOST ONE OF THESE THREE CASKETS WAS FASHIONED BY BELLINI Which casket should the suitor choose? 58 PORTIA'S CASKETS . she was born smart and b eautiful-j ust like her mommy and grandmommy.

(2) tell the maker of each casket. and lead casket. The S econd Test. the suitor had to (1) select the casket containing the portrait.. Portia used a portrait of herself.69b . The caskets read: Gold EXACTLY ONE OF THE SE TWO CASKETS WAS FASHIONED BY BELLINI Which casket should the suitor choose in order to find the portrait? 69c . Again... Portia used only two caskets. the suitor' s chances were one out of three (if he guessed blindly) . and the portrait was in one of the caskets. gold and silver. To pass the te st. __ _ _ _ _ _ __ In this test. he was led into another room containing a gold. the suitor' s chances (if he guessed blindly) were one out of two. Again each casket was fashioned either by Cellini or Bellini. silver. each casket was fashioned by either Cellini or Bellini. The Third Test _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ If the suitor passed the se two tests.J L------J AT LEAST TWO OF THESE CASKETS WERE FASHIONED BY CELLINI What is the solution? THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA'S CASKETS 59 . and one of them contained her portrait (no dagger was used in this test) . N ow in this test.. The three inscriptions read: Gold Silver Lead __--_ '--____.

and it illustrates a logical principle of basic importance. The suitor of the last story passed all thre e tests and happily claimed P ortia III as his bride. Then it is not the case that exactly one of the statements is true. This means that the statement on the gold casket must be false. If the statement on the silver casket is true. Several generations later a descendant was born in America who looked so much like the ancestral portraits that she was named Portia Nth-henceforth to be referred to as "Portia.D . O n the other hand. she had only two caskets. in one of which was P ortia's portrait. this means that the statements are either both true or both false. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The fourth and final tale is the most baffling of all." When this Portia grew to young womanhood she was both clever and beautiful-just like all the other Portias. The lids bore the following inscriptions: Gold Silver ----- EXACTLY ONE OF THE SE TWO STATEMENTS IS TRUE Which casket would you choose? Well. hence they are both false. great. but let that pass). In addition. The test she used appeared simple enough. the statement on the gold 60 PORTIA'S CASKETS . They c an' t both be true (under the assumption that the second is false). THE MYSTERY: WHAT WENT WRONG? 70 . They had many c hildren. the suitor reasoned as follows. suppose the statement on the silver casket is false. e tc. she was highly vivacious and a bit on the mischievous side.grandchildren. She also decided to select her hus band by the casket method (which was somewhat of an anomaly in modern New York. Therefore again. silver and gold. then it is the case that exactly one of the two statements is true.

silver. the suitor merely need choose one of the empty ones. "The portrait must be in the gold casket" and opened the lid. It resembles one of the tests given by my ancestor Portia III. So the suitor triumphantly exclaimed. the portrait was there. what on earth went wrong with the suitor's reasoning? "Well. To win her. well!" said Portia. you seem like a very attractive young man. she l e d the suitor into another room in which there were three caskets-gold. the statement on the gold casket must be false. trium phant. but I will! In fact. I'll forget the last test and give you a simpler one in which your chances of winning me will b e two out of three rather than one out of two. Sure enough. evidently enjoying the situation enormously. and lead. and disdainful air opened the silver casket. Now surely you should be able to pass this one ! " So saying. and with a haughty. so I think I'll give you another chance . Therefore the portrait must be in the gold casket. did it? However. Portia explained that one of them contained a dagger and the other two were empty." laughed Portia. The inscriptions on the caskets read as follows: Gold Silver Lead THE DAGGER IS IN THIS CASKET THIS CASKET IS EMPTY AT MOST ONE OF THESE THREE STATEMENTS IS TRUE (Compare this problem with the first test of Portia III! Doesn't it seem to b e exactly the same problem?) THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA'S CASKETS 61 . Now. " so your reason didn't do you much good. "I don't stoop to deceptions. S o regardless of whether the statement on the silver casket is true or false. I really shouldn't do this.casket is false . To his utter horror the gold casket was empty! The suitor was stunned and claimed that Portia had deceived him.

Portia opened the other two caskets and they were empty! I'm sure the reader will be happy to hear that Portia married her suitor anyhow. But this still leaves unanswered the question: What was wrong with the suitor's reasoning? S OLUTIONS 67a� __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The statements on the gold and lead caskets say the opposite. the suitor reasoned very carefully this time as follows: Suppose statement (3) is true.nents must be false-in particular (2) is false. and merely used the tests to tease him a little) . if (3) is false. Then both other state. hence (1) must be one of them. 62 PORTIA'S CASKETS . so in this case the dagger is in the gold casket. ( She had decided this long b efore the tests. On the other hand. Both methods are correct. hence one of them must b e true. Therefore the portrait must be in the silver casket.Well. So the suitor chose the lead casket. which is contrary to what is given. opened the lid. then there must be at least two true statements present. so the dagger is then in the silver casket. we would again have two true statements (this time on the lead and silver caskets) . and to his horror. If the portrait were in the lead casket. Since at most one of the three statements is true. This problem could be alternatively solved by the fol lowing method: If the portrait were in the gold casket. so the portrait is actually in the silver casket. then the statement on the silver casket is false. we would have two true statements (namely on the gold and lead caskets) . In either case the lead casket is empty. and this illustrates the fact that in many problems there can be several correct ways of arriving at the same conclusion. there was the dagger! Laughingly.

67b.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____

If the portrait were in the lead casket, then all three state ments would be true, which is contrary to what is given. If the p ortrait were in the silver casket, then all three state ments would be false, which is again contrary to what is given. Therefore the portrait must b e in the gold casket (and we have the first two statements true and the third one false, which is consistent with what is given) .

68 a.

_ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

We can immediately rule out the lead casket, for if the portrait were there, then both statements on the lead casket would b e false. S o the portrait is in the gold or the silver casket. Now, the first statements on the gold and silver caskets agree, so they are both true or both false. If they are both false, the second statements are both true but they cannot be both true since they are contradictory. Therefore the first statements are both true, so the portrait cannot b e in the gold casket. This proves that the portrait is in the silver casket.

68b.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

If the portrait is in the gold casket, then the gold and silver casket lids each contain two false statements. If it is in the silver casket, then the silver and lead caskets each contain one true and one false statement. Therefore the portrait is in the lead casket (and the silver casket lid contains both true statements; the lead, both false; and the gold, one true and one false).

69a.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _

Suppose the lead casket had been fashioned by Bellini. Then the statement would b e true, hence the other caskets

THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA'S CASKETS: SOLUTIONS

63

must have been fashioned by C ellini. This means that the other statements are both false-in particular the state ment on the silver casket is false, so the dagger is in the silver casket. Thus, if the lead casket is the work of Bellini, then the silver casket contains the dagger. Now, suppose the lead casket had been fashioned by C ellini. Then the statement is false, so at least two caskets were fashioned by Bellini. This means that both the gold and silver caskets are Bellini caskets (since the lead one is assumed Cellini) . Then the statements on both the gold and silver are true. In particular, the one on the gold is true. S o in this case, the dagger lies in the gold casket. In neither case can the dagger be in the lead casket, so the . suitor should choose the lead casket.

69b ..

If the silver casket is a B ellini, then the statement is true, in which case the gold casket is a C ellini. Suppose the silver casket is a Cellini. Then it is not the case that exactly one of the caskets is a Bellini. This means that the gold is a Cellini (for if it were a Bellini, then it would be the case that exactly one is a Bellini!) Thus, whether the silver is Bellini or C ellini, the gold is surely a Cellini. Therefore the statement on the gold casket is false, so the portrait is in the gold casket.

69ce

_______________________

We first show that the lead casket must be a Bellini. Sup pose it were a C ellini. Then the statement is false, which means that there must be at least two Bellinis, which must be silver and gold. This is impossible, since the portrait can't be in both the silver and gold caskets. Thus the lead casket is really a B ellini. Hence the statement on it is true, so there are at least two C ellinis. This means that the gold and silver are both Cellinis. Hence the statements on both of them are false, so the portrait is neither in the gold nor

64

PORTIA'S CASKETS

the silver caskets. Therefore the portrait is in the lead casket. Also, we have proved that the lead casket is a Bellini and the other two are Cellinis, which answers the second question.

70 .

_ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

The suitor should have realized that without any informa tion given about the truth or falsity of any of the sentences, nor any information given about the relation of their truth values, the sentence s could say anything, and the obj ect (portrait or dagger, as the case may b e) could b e anywhere. Good heavens, I can take any number of caskets that I please and put an object in one of them and then write any inscriptions at all on the lids; these sentence s won't convey any information whatsoever. So Portia was not really lying; all she said was that the obj ect in question was in one of the b oxes, and in e ach case it really was. The situation would have been very different with any of the previous Portia stories, if the object had not been where the suitor figured it out to be; in this case one of the old P ortias would have had to have made a false statement somewhere along the line (as we will soon see) . Another way to look a t the matter i s that the suitor' s error was to assume that each of the statements was either true or false. Let us look more carefully at the first test of Portia Nth, using two caskets. The statement on the gold casket, "The portrait is not in here," is certainly either true or false, since either the portrait is in the gold casket or it isn't. It happened to be true, as a matter of fact, since P ortia had actually placed the portrait in the silver casket. Now, given that Portia did put the portrait in the silver casket, was the statement on the silver casket true or false? It couldn't b e either one without getting into a paradox! Suppose it were true. Then exactly one of the statements is true, but since the first statement (on the gold casket) is true, then this statement is false. So if it is true, it is false.

THE MYSTERY OF PORTIA'S CASKETS: SOLUTIONS

65

On the other hand, suppose this statement on the silver casket is false. Then the first is true, the second is false, which means that exactly one of the statements is true, which is what this statement asserts, hence it would have to be true! Thus either assumption, that the statement is true . or is false, leads to a contradiction. It will be instructive to compare this test with the second test given by Portia III, which also used just two caskets. The gold casket said the same thing as the gold of the problem, "The portrait is not in here," but the silver casket, instead of saying " Exactly one of these two state ments is true," said "Exactly one of these two caskets was fashioned by Bellini." Now, the reader may wonder what significant difference there is between these two state ments, given that B ellini inscribed only true statements and Cellini only false ones. Well, the difference, though subtle, is basic. The statement, "Exactly one of these two caskets was fashioned by Bellini" is a statement which must be true or false; it is a historic statement about the physical world either it is or it is not the case that Bellini made exactly one of the two caskets. Suppose, in the Portia III problem, that the portrait had been found to be in the silver casket instead of the cold casket. What would you conclude: that the statement on the silver casket was neither true nor false? That would be the wrong conclusion! The statement, as I have pointed out, really is either true or false. The correct conclusion to draw is that if the portrait had been in the silver casket, then Portia In would have been lying in saying what she did about B ellini and Cellini. By contrast, the modern Portia could place the portrait in the silver casket without having lied, since she said nothing about the truth-values of the statements. The whole question of the truth-values of statements which refer to their own truth-values is a subtle and basic aspect of modern logic and will be dealt with again in later chapters.

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PORTIA'S CASKETS

(i5! From the Files \.Q)O of Inspector Cra i g

A. FROM THE FILE S O F INSPE CTOR CRAIG

Inspector Leslie Craig of S cotland Yard has kindly con sented to release some of his case histories for the benefit of those interested in the application of logic to the solution of crimes.

71.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _

We shall start with a simple case. An enormous amount of loot had b een stolen from a store. The criminal {or crimi nals} took the heist away in a car. Three well-known crimi nals A,B , C were brought to S cotland Yard for questioning. The following facts were ascertained:

(1) No one other than A,B,C, was involved in the robbery. (2) C never pulls a job without using A (and possibly others) as an accomplice. (3) B does not know how to drive.

Is A innocent or guilty?

72.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ___ __ __

Another simple case, again of robbery: A,B, C were brought in for questioning and the following facts were ascertained: FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG 67

Can you infer from these facts which one s are innocent and which ones are guilty?" 68 OTHER MYSTERIES . the robbery occurred in London. The Sergeant scratched his head and said. (2) A never works without at least one accomplice. and neither one ever dared to pull a j ob without an accomplice. A and C happened to be identical twins and few people could tell them apart. Three well-known criminals A..B. In particular.B or C was involved. The Case of the Identical Twins. All three suspects had elaborate records. "Not much. then C is guilty. the twins were quite timid. Now. one of the two twins was seen drinking at a bar in D over. (3) C is innocent. C were rounded up for que stioning. C was in volved in the robbery. Is B innocent or guilty? 7 3 . which ones are innocent and which ones guilty? 74. Also several wit nesses testified that at the time of the robbery. and a good deal was known about their personalities and habits.(1) No one other than A. (1) (2) (3) (4) If A is guilty and B is innocent. No one other than A. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ " What do you make of these three facts?" asked Inspector Craig to S ergeant McPherson. but it was not known which twin.B . I'm afraid. B.e was involved. on the other hand. A never works with C. was quite bold and despised ever using an accomplice. assuming that no one other than A. and at least one of them is guilty. C never works alone. ____ _ In this more interesting case.B. Again. Sir.

then he had exactly one accomplice. Three suspects A. so is B. Is D guilty or not? FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG 69 . McGregor. (3) I f B is innocent. The Case of McGregor's Shop. Inspector Craig was e specially interested in knowing whether D was innocent or guilty. phoned S cotland Yard that his shop had been robbed. then he had exactly two accomplices. It was known for sure that at least one of them was guilty and that no one outside these four was involved."No. then A is one of them. (3) If C was guilty.B .C had been in the shop on the day of the robbery. (5) If C is innocent. C were rounded u p for questioning. Whom did Inspector Craig indict? 76 . (2) If A was guilty. then he had exactly one accomplice . C. (4) If exactly two are guilty. The following facts were establishe d: (1) Each of the men A. Fortunately. since D was a particu larly dangerous criminal.D were rounded up for ques tioning concerning a robbery." responded Craig. the above facts are sufficient to determine this." Which one is necessarily guilty? 75. The following facts turned up: (1) A was definitely innocent. "but there is enough material here to definitely indict one of them.B. and no one else had been in the shop that day. so is C. a London shopkeeper. Mr.B . Case of the Four. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This time four suspects A. (2) If B was guilty.

A. He did this just as an exe. In this case.B. could figure out. the following facts were e stablished: (1) At least one of the three is guilty. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ This and the next case involve the trial of three men. 70 OTHER MYSTERIES .frequently used to go to court to observe cases-even those in which he was not himself involved. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ __ __ __ In this case. Can the guilt of any particular one of the three be established? 79.The Case ofthe Stupid Defense Attorney. (2) If A is innocent. then C is guilty. then C is innocent. then C is guilty. then he had an accomplice. for participation in a robb ery. Defense Attorney / That's not true! Why was this the worst thing the defense attorney could have said? 78. (2) If A is guilty and B is innocent.B . Here are some of the cases he observed. The prosecutor and the defense attorney made the following statements: Prosecutor / If the defendant is guilty.rcise in logic-to see which cases he . e��r 77. the following two facts were established: (1) If A is innocent or B is guilty. C. CAN YOU PUZ ZLE THE S E OUT? Insp a ig . _ _ _ A man was being tried for participation in a robbery.

(2) If B is guilty then either C was an accomplice or A is innocent. so is A. C.This evidence is insufficient to convict any of them. the court knew that the defendant was born and bred on the neighboring island of knights and knaves.D. then at least one of B. then C was an accomplice. This case again involves four defendants. ) The FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG 71 .B. Which ones are definitely guilty and which ones are doubtful? 8 1 . Which two are they? 80 . (We recall that knights always tell the truth and knaves always lie. The following facts were e stablished: (1) If A is guilty. C.D were involved and the following four facts were e stablished: (1) (2) (3) (4) If both A and B are guilty. then B was an accomplice. S IX EXOTIC CAS E S 82. Was I t a Wise Thing t o S ay? _ _ _ _ _ _ On a small island a man was being tried for a crime. Now. (3) If D is innocent then A is guilty and C is innocent. Which ones are innocent and which ones are guilty? C .. If C is guilty. (4) If D is guilty. but it does point to two of them such that one.. of these two has to be guilty. then D was an accomplice. four defendants A.B.C was an accomplice. In this more intere sting case. If A is innocent then D is guilty. A. If A is guilty.

The Case of the Uncertain Prosecutor. What would you conclude? 85 . suppose. the prosecutor had made the following two statements: (1) Either X or Y is guilty. the prosecutor had made the following two statements: 72 OTHER MYSTERIES ." Was this a wise thing for him to have said? D id it help or injure his case? Or did it make no difference? own 83. Y were being tried for a crime on this island. instead. suppose. He thought for a while and then came out with this statement: "The person who actually committed this crime is a knave. (2) X and Y are not both guilty. Now the most curious aspect of this case is that the prosecuting attorney was known to be either a knight or a knave. __ O n another occasion two men X. instead. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ In the above situation. If you were on the jury. In the same situation. what would you make of this? Could you come to any conclusion about the guilt of either X or Y? What would be your opinion about the veracity of the prosecutor? 84.defendant was allowed to make only one statement in his defense. He made the following two statements in court: (1) X is guilty. (2) X is not guilty.

The three defendants made the fol� lowing statements: A: I am innocent. and the only knight among them. Three inhabitants of the island. C: B is not normal. the court knew that if the defendant was not guilty. and normals. E ven stranger. knaves. knaves always lie. bears a superficial resemblance to the above but is really quite different.B. the most interesting case of all. The first baffling thing was that it was known that one of them was a knight. It was also known that the guilty one was not a knave. the prosecutor.(1) E ither X is innocent or Y is guilty. then the guilty one was either the defense attorney or the prosecutor. knaves. This case took place on the island of knights. were being tried for a crime. though it was not known which was which. It was also known that the one who committed the crime was a knight. (2) X is guilty. and the defense attorney. and one normal. We recall that knights always tell the truth. and C. What would you conclude? 86 . It was known that the crime was committed by only one of them.. Which one is guilty? 87 . The three made the fol lowing statements in court: FROM THE FILES OF INSPE CTOR CRAIG 73 . and normals sometime s lie and sometime s tell the truth. A. and normals. The principal actors in this case were the defendant. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ This. B: That is true. one a knave. It also took place on the island of knights.

if C is guilty. and who was the knave? S OLUTIONS 71. who was normal. hence the government wired to Scotland Yard asking whether they could send Inspector Craig to come over to help settle the case. Defense Attorney / My client is indeed innocent Prosecutor / Not true. On the other hand.B . then by statement (2).Defendant / I am innocent. and which the normal. "Are you. C is guilty. Who was guilty. then he must have had an accomplice (since he can't drive) . So he decided to ask just enough questions to settle these facts. 74 OTHER MYSTERIES . and Inspector Craig knew everything. which the knave. C is guilty. So A or C (or both) are guilty. so again A or C must be guilty. Inspector Craig thought for a while. no one other than A. These statements certainly seemed natural enough. If C is innocent. A is also guilty. and the trial was reconvened. The j ury convened. then A must be a guilty one. "I want to get to the bottom of this!" He wanted to know not only who was guilty. who was the knight. the above evidence was insufficient Now. then it' s obvious that A and/or C is guilty-since by (1). Craig said to himself. the guilty one?" The prosecutor answered. First he asked the prose cutor. Therefore A is guilty. and then he asked the defendant. If B is guilty. If B is innocent. S everal weeks later Inspector Craig arrived. but also which one was the knight. the defendant is guilty. but could not come to any decision. "Is the prosecutor guilty?" The defendant answered. this island was a British possession at the time. by any chance. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I shall first show that at least one of A.

Then he had an accomplice-by (2)-which couldn't b e A-by (3)-hence must again b e B . B and C cannot both be innocent. But this is impossible since one of the twins was in Dover at the time. hence must have b een B. If A is guilty. B must be guilty-by (1) . by (2) . B is guilty. Therefore A must be innocent. ____________________ __ _ _ This is even simpler. B is also guilty. This twin must have had a n accomplice who couldn't be B hence must have been the other twin. hence must be B. contradicting statement (2) . then B certainly is! FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 75 . Therefore B is guilty• . Then if A were guilty. __ __ __ _________________ B must b e guilty. he had an accomplice. who couldn't be C-by (3) . 74. Then by (1) . Then C is the only guilty one. Then one of the twins must b e guilty. Argument One: Suppose B were innocent. Therefore B is guilty. hence A must have had an accomplice. (c) If neither A nor C i s guilty. C would also be guilty-by statement {I)-but this would mean that A worked with C. then. then. Argument Two: A more direct argument is this: (a) Sup pose A is guilty. 73. since C is innocent. So in either case. This ac complice couldn't have been C-by (3) . And since B always works alone. both twins are innocent. So if A is guilty. Suppose B were innocent. which contradicts state ment (3) .72. If A is innocent. (b) S uppose C is guilty. This can be shown by either of the fol lowing arguments.

75@ Inspector Craig indicted Mr. C had been in the shop on the day of the robbery and could have commited the robbery. Then one of B .B. Yet. C are both innocent.B. 76 . If they were both guilty. E rgo. Then he had exactly one accomplice-by (2) . Step Three: Now it is e stablished that A. This is a contradiction. C is guilty and the other innocent. then by (2) exactly two people were in volved. C is innocent. _______________________ If B was guilty.C are either both innocent or both guilty. so by (3) C must be innocent. Epilogue: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Confronted by Craig' s irrefutable logic. there was no robbery and McGregor was lying. Step One: Suppose A were guilty.C are all inno cent. Therefore A must be innocent. by (3) and (5) . no one other than A. These can't both be the case. so there are at most two guilty ones. If B is guilty then he 76 OTHER MYSTERIES . then they were the only guilty ones (since A is innocent) . which by statement (4) would imply that A is guilty. A is also innocent. Therefore C did not have exactly two accom plices. hence at least one of B . by statement (1). Step Two : Again. This contradicts (3) and (5). then by (3) exactly three people were involved. when in fact there couldn't have been one! His reasoning was as follows. B and C are both guilty or both innocent. McGregor for falsely claiming there was a robbery. if C was guilty. Then there would be exactly two guilty ones. McGregor broke down and confessed that he had indeed lied and was trying to collect insurance. since A is innocent. which jointly imply that B. Therefore B.

in effect. If B is innocent. Therefore D is guilty. then certainly at least one of B. that the defendant didn't commit the crime alone. if A is innocent then C is innocent. Then B or C must be guilty by ( 1 ) . by (3) . so again either B or C is guilty. then it must be C who is guilty. B y (1) . suppose A is guilty.had exactly one accomplice. Then A and B are both guilty. hence by (2) . Then by (2) . By (2) . So regardless of whether B is guilty or innocent. This proves that if A is guilty. which is tantamount to saying that the defendant did commit the crime alone. 789 This i s extremely simple. either B or C is guilty. Also. Then A is guilty and B is innocent. If B is innocent. so is C . Well. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____ The two are B and C. But suppose that B is innocent. C is guilty. which is impossible. hence by (1) C is guilty too. if A i s innocent. suppose A is innocent. 79.B. The defense attorney denied this.C are both innocent) . 80 . If B is guilty. if C is FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 77 . 77 9 _ ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The prosecutor said. so is C . who must have been D (since A. at least one of them must b e guilty. then A. On the other hand suppose A is guilty. C must b e guilty. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ We first show that if A is guilty. D must be guilty. But suppose B is guilty. in which case D must be guilty. "either A is innocent or B is guilty" is true) . C are all innocent. then C is guilty (because if A is innocent then the statement. Therefore if A is innocent. Therefore A must be guilty. For. then C is both guilty and innocent.

By (3). Y is inno cent. This is a contradiction. then X is innocent.guilty so is D . if A is innocent. S o whether D is innocent o r guilty. Hence by (1). _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Yes. On the other hand. D must be guilty. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Suppose the prosecutor were a knave. if D is innocent then C is innocent. There fore. it was wise. For suppose the de fendant is a knight. and the prosecutor is a knight. then it would b e the case that (1) X and Y are both innocent. 83. But we already know that A is not innocent. if D is inno cent then A is guilty. so is D . Then his statement is false. then A is guilty. hence the defendant must be inno cent. 84 . 78 OTHER MYSTERIES . then X. Hence by (2) . The rest are all doubtful. Finally. hence D must be guilty. Then his statement is true. hence the guilty man is a knave. either C is guilty or A is innocent. by (3) . if D is guilty. 82 . Since (1) is false. Then (1) and (2) would both be false. Again. Y must b e innocent. So D is definitely guilty. A must b e guilty. '81 . H __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ the prosecutor were a knave. So the prosecutor must be a knight. and since they are not both guilty. Hence X really is guilty. But we have proved that C is not innocent. But by (4) . Combining these two facts. so is D . B is also guilty. rtlgardless of whether A is guilty or innocent. S o all of them are guilty. so again the defendant is innocent. (2) X is guilty. By (4) . so the criminal is actually a knight. Since (2) is false. it acquitted him. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The answer is that all of them are guilty. we see that if A is guilty. Therefore X is guilty.Y are both guilty-hence X is guilty. suppose the defendant is a knave. th�re fore C must be guilty.

C is a knight. so X is guilty and Y is innocent. so B is normal. Therefore B cannot be normal. X is guilty. contrary to what is given. Before Craig Arrived: To begin with. he is a knight or normal. Hence the prosecutor is again a knight. 1 A cannot b e a knave. hence also innocent. hence C would be a knave or a normal. hence none of them is guilty. Then C' s statement would be false. But A is the knight. by (2) .B. suppose the prosecutor were a knave. Then by (1) (since X is not innocent). contrary to the given condition that the knave is not guilty. his statement would be false. Then B ' s statement is also true. Therefore. hence he would be guilty and hence would be a knight. because if he were a knave his statement would be false. FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 79 . Hence X is guilty. and Y is guilty.this is a contradiction. Therefore A is normal. for if he were he would b e guilty and wouldn't have lied about being innocent. for if he were. But (2) is also false. Y must be guilty. IWe are letting A be the defendant. Also A cannot be a knave. hence B is a knight or normal. Since A is innocent. 87 . Suppose B were normal. S o this time X and Y are both guilty. Possibility One: A is a knight: Then his statement is true. hence he would be guilty. 85 & __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Again. B the defense attorney. hence X is innocent: another contradiction. so the prosecutor is a knight. and C the prosecutor. hence he is innocent. Therefore A is either a knight or normal. Then (1) is false. B' s state ment is true. X is innocent. This would mean that none of A. he must b e a knight and hence guilty. Therefore B is not a knave. 86 & _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____ A cannot b e a knight.

. being the knave. since A is). C raig did ask more questions. he already knew that he was innocent (be cause in all of the above three possibilities. " So now C raig (as well as the reader) knows that possibility (3) is out. Possibility Three: A is normal and guilty: Then the prose cutor's statement was true. is innocent. hence he would not have asked any more questions. Now. so the prosecutor's answer would only serve to let C raig know whether the prosecutor was a knight or a knave. he can't be normal. Therefore the prosecutor must have been a knave and answered "Yes. Possibility Two: A is normal and innocent: Then B's state ment is again true. then B is guilty." revealing himself to b e a knight. B is guilty. So. So. Had he truthfully answered "No. since it is known that the knave is not guilty. hence B is the knight (since A is the . since A is innocent. But after the prosecutor's answer. the prosecutor is innocent). normal one).This leaves C as the knave. Let us summarize the three possibilities: (1) Defendant Defense Attorney Prosecutor Guilty Normal Innocent Knave Innocent Knight (2) Innocent Normal (3) Guilty Normal Guilty Knight Innocent Knave Innocent Knave Innocent Knight All three possibilities are consistent with the statements made before C raig arrived. After Craig Arrived: C raig asked the prosecutor whether he was guilty. This leaves B as the knave. and C . which leaves (1 ) and 80 OTHER MYSTERIES . so the prosecutor must be a knight (again. then C raig would have known that possibility (3) was in fact the only one.

Well. he knew the entire situation. and after he was answered. " Had the answer been "No. This means that the defense attorney is in fact the guilty one." there would have been no way of Craig' s knowing whether the defendant was a knight or a normal. a knight would have to answer "No" to this question. but it is still unknown which of the defendant and the defense attorney is the knight and which is normal. Craig then asked the defendant whether the prosecutor was guilty. Therefore the defendant is normal and the defense attorney is a knight (though guilty) . But Craig did know.(2) . FROM THE FILES OF INSPECTOR CRAIG: SOLUTIONS 81 . whereas a normal could answer it either "Yes" or "N 0 . therefore he must have gotten a "Yes" answer.

A werewolf can be either a knight or a knave. it is well to be provided for everything.aid ves . Of course.. (We recall that knights always tell the truth and knaves always lie. A. (C) how to defend yourself in court. There are many situations in life in which it is good to have one' s wits about one.) In addition.. some of the inhabitants are werewolves and have the annoying habit of sometimes turning into wolves at night and devouring people. So I shall now give you detailed. ther Practical its of dvice This chapter is concerned more with the practical than the recreational aspects of logic. step-by-step instructions which will teach you: (A) how to avoid werewolves in the forest. I cannot absolutely guarantee that you will actually meet with any of these situations. but as the White Knight wisely explained to Alice. (B) how to choose a bride.. 82 OTHER MYSTERIES . WHAT TO D O IN THE FORE S T OF WEREWOLVE S Suppose you are visiting a forest in which every inhabi tant is either a knight or a knave. (D) how to marry a king' s daughter.

B. A. But in these statements. B: I am not a werewolf. B. HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES 83 . which one would you pick? 89 0 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Again. They make the following statements: A: C is a werewolf. They make the following statements: A: I am a werewolf. A. make statements. Give a complete classification of A.B.C. C: At most one of us is a knight. each of whom is either a knight or a knave. each of A. Our problem has two parts: (a) Is the werewolf a knight or a knave? (b) If you have to take one of them as a traveling companion.B make the following statements: A: At least one of the three of us is a knight. and it is known that exactly one of them is a werewolf.B. Suppose A.C-not to j ust A and B . and it is more important that he not be a werewolf than that he not be a knave. C is a knight or a knave and exactly one of them is a werewolf. However only two of them.B. B: I am a werewolf. 90 9 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ In this and the next two problems there are again three inhabitants A. and C .B. the word "us" refers to the three people A.88 " You are interviewing three inhabitants. C: At least two of us are knaves. B: At least one of the three of us is a knave. and C.

there is exactly one werewolf and he is a knight. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ In this problem we are given that there is exactly one wereo wolf and that he is a knight.Given that at least one of them is a werewolf. who is the werewolf? 92. O nly one of them. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Here is an elegantly simple one involving j ust two inhabio tants. They make the following statements: 84 OTHER MYSTERIES . __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ This time. and that none of them is both a knight and a werewolf. we get the following statements: A: At least one of the three of us is a knave. and that the other two are knaves. Just one of them is a werewolf. B. makes a statement: " C is a werewolf. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ In this problem we get the following two statements: A: At least one of the three of us is a knave. Who is he? 93. Given that there is exactly one werewolf and that he is a knight. A and B." Who is the werewolf? 94. which ones are werewolves? 91. R: C is a werewolf. B: C is a knight. Again.

Elizabeth has a brother HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES 85 . You fall in love with one of the females there-a girl named Elizabeth-and are thinking of marrying her.A: The werewolf is a knight. you want to know just what you are getting into. she wants to marry only a knave. However. not a poor one. How to Choose a Bride.. the girl you love wants to marry only a rich knight. Which one would you select for your traveling companion? B. could you convince her that you are a rich knight? 97 . in one statement. (We assume for convenience that everyone there is classified as either rich or poor. _ _______ This time you are a visitor to the island of knights and knaves. in fact. However. You fall in love with a girl there and wish to marry her. instead. HOW TO WIN OR CHOOSE A BRIDE 95. that you are a rich knave. But she wants a rich knave. can you convince her that you are a rich knight? 96. How Do You Convince Her? _ ______ Suppose you are an inhabitant of the island of knights and knaves. How. this girl has strange tastes. If you were allowed to question her. in only one statement. but an ancient taboo of the island forbids a man to hold speech with any female unless he is already married to her. Every female there is either a knight or a knave. How. you do not wish to marry a knave. for some odd reason she does not wish to marry a knight. B: The werewolf is a knave. Suppose. You are allowed to make only one state� ment to her. there would be no problem.) Suppose. However.

BUT CAN YOU PROVE IT? We now come to a particularly enticing group of puzzles. or normals. " The problem is for you to design a question such that upon hearing the answer. who sometimes lie and sometimes tell the truth. Since you are an outsider. YOU ARE INNOC ENT. Now. and normals. Bahava. you are not subject to the injunction that a knight may marry only a knight and a knave only a knave. who always tell the truth. YE S . who always lie. you will know for sure whether E lizabeth is a knight or a knave. Now. and normals. so you are free to marry the female of your choice. knaves. you are to pick a bride from among three sisters A. You are allowed to ask just one question of the brother. You yourself are now one of the inhabitants of the island. This time you are visiting the island of Bahava. hence the females are also called knights. 86 OTHER MYSTERIES .. but the other two are not. but the que stion must be answer able by "Yes" or "No. It is known that one of them is a knight.B . but marrying a werewolf is going just a bit too far! You are allowed to ask any one question of your choice to any of the three sisters of your choice. knaves.Arthur who is also a knight or a knave (but not necessarily the same as his sister) . They all take place on the island of knights. we recall. in which there are knights. is a female liberationist island. one a knave. How to Choose a Bride on the Island of Bahava. What question would you ask? C . But it is also known (to your horror!) that the normal one is a werewolf. knaves. let us assume that you don't mind marrying a knave (or a knight) . What question would you ask? 98 . but again the question must have a " Yes" or "No" answer. C . and the other normal.

_ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose you are in the same situation except for the fact that you are guilty. Suppose that in this problem it is known that the criminal is not normal-he is a knight or a knave. You yourself are innocent. suppose it is known that the criminal is a knight. �__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ In this problem. and for some strange reason it is suspected that you are the crimi nal. Your purpose is to convince the jury that you are innocent.) S uppose also that you are a knight (but the jury doesn't know this) but innocent of the crime. or a normal in your position. What statement could you make which could be made by either a knight. You are allowed to make only one statement in your own behalf. Your purpose is not to convince the jury that you are not a knave. 99. What statement would you make? 102. (This is no contradiction. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Suppose it is known that the criminal is a knave. What would you say? 1 00 . a knave. You are allowed to make only one statement. Suppose also that you are a knave (though the court doesn't know this) but that you are nevertheless innocent of this crime. a person doesn't neces sarily have to lie in order to commit a crime.A crime has b e en committed on the island. Here is a more difficult one. You are brought to court and tried. What statement could you make which would convince the jury (assuming they were rational be ings) that you are innocent? 101 . which would convince the jury that you are innocent? HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES 87 . but only that you are innocent of the crime.

HO\V TO MARRY A KING'S DAUGHTER And now we come to the topic which I am sure you have all b een anxiously waiting for! 1060 _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ You are an inhabitant of the island of knights. Again it is known that the criminal is not normal. Again you are not the criminal. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Here is a more interesting one. (2) you are not a knave. the King does not wish his 88 OTHER MYSTERIES . and normals. Again it is known that the criminal is not normal. knaves. You are in love with the King' s daughter Margo zita and wish to marry her. Let us suppose that (1) You are innocent. What statement could you make which neither an innocent knight or knave could .make which would convince the jury that you are innocent? 104. but you de spise knights. but you are normal. Could you in one state ment convince the jury that you are innocent but not a knight? D. Is there one single statement you could make which would simultaneously convince the jury of both of these facts? 105. A sort of " dual" to the above problem i s this: Suppose that again the guilty one is not normal and that you are an innoe cent but not a knight.l03@ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Here is a much easier one. you don't mind getting the reputation of being a knave or a normal. Now. Suppose that for some odd reason.

daughter to marry a normal. they are not for you! " Well now. random. and with him you always know where you stand. With a normal. you never know where you stand. a knight is thoroughly reliable. knaves. However. and totally unreliable. You are allowed an audience with the King and you are allowed to make as many statements to him as you like. Besides. you must convince the King that you are not normal. let him at least be con sistent about it. my dear. because knave s are too treacherous. so you have a chance. because whenever he says anything. I don't want you to marry a knight or a knave. then let him always tell the truth. This problem has two parts. suppose that you are in fact not normal. one day he is telling you the truth. He says to his daughter: "Dar ling. I believe a man should stick to his principles. You don't want to marry a knight. all you have to do is b elieve the opposite. you know. conventional. and normals. I want you to marry a good solid normal. . You don't want to marry a knave. He says to her: "My dear. bourgeois normal is just the thing for you! " HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES 89 . a good. because knights are too sanctimonious. O n another island of knights. If a man b elieves in telling the truth. otherwise he won't let you marry his daughter. (a) What is the smallest number of true statements you can make which will convince the King that you are not normal? (b) What is the smallest number of false statements you can make which will convince the King that you are not normal? 107. If he b elieves in lying. What good is that? Now. Normals are capricious. and the next day he is lying to you. so you still know how matters really are. the King has the opposite philosophy. But these wishy-washy bourgeois normals -no my dear. A knave is really as good. you really shouldn't marry a normal. No.

but the solution given for the previous one will not suffice to solve this one. Therefore. to win his daughter. How can this be done? S OLUTIONS 88 . you are a normal on an island of knights. Again the King wants his daughter to marry only a normal. but he also requires proof of excep tional ingenuity and intelligence. (a) What is the smallest number of true statements you could make which would convince the King that you are normal? (b) What is the smallest number of false statements you could make which would convince the King that you are normal? 1080 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Here ' s a more difficult version of the above problem. knaves. Then there really are at least two knaves. Again. hence they must be A 90 OTHER MYSTERIES . Suppose he is a knight. you must make a single statement in his presence which will simultaneously satisfy the following two re quirements: (1) It must convince the King that you are normal. (2) It must make it impossible for the King to know whether the statement is true or false. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ C is either a knight or a knave. and normals.Suppose you are a normal on this island. The solution of this one constitutes an alternative (though un necessarily complicated) solution of the preceding one. Your job is to convince the King that you are normal.

then pick A. suppose C is a knave. 89. hence his statement would be true. hence there would be at least two knights. So A and B are b oth knights. Thus C is a knight and a werewolf. which would mean that their statements were true and they were both werewolves. regardless of whether C is a knight or a knave.and B . Therefore B is a knight. hence A. Then A. Then there really are two knaves. Therefore C is a knight. then the werewolf is a knave (since he must be B) . Hence C is the one and only werewolf. these must be A and B . HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 91 . so the werewolf must be C .B would both have to b e knights (since C is assumed a knave) . the werewolf is a knave (though a different person in each case) . we have proved that the werewolf is either B or C. which contradicts the given conditions of the problem. This knave must be C . so A is also a knight. he is C. his statement is true so there is at least one knave. _______________________ If B were a knave then there would indeed b e at least one knave among them. hence if you wish to choose someone who is definitely not a werewolf. On the other hand. Then his statement would be false. Then. Since A is a knight and claims that C is a werewolf. Then it is not true that at least two of them are knaves. Also. _______________________ We first show that C is a knight. Then A's statement is true. but knaves don't make true statements. Therefore. since their statements are false. So in this case. then C really is a werewolf. Since B is a knight. 90 . so there is at most one knave.B are both knights. neither A nor B is a werewolf. This knave must be C . the werewolf is again a knave-namely. S o if C is a knight. Suppose he were a knave. S o the answer to the first question is that the werewolf is a knave. A and B are knaves and neither one a werewolf. Then B must be a werewolf (since he says he isn't but he is a knave) .

And since B says that C is a knight. hence also a knight. Since A is a knight.91 . b eing a knave. A must b e a knight and there must be at least one knave. Suppose B is a knave. hence cannot b e B . ______ __ __ __ __ _ __ __ __ __ If B were a knight. then C would also be (because of B' s statement) and we would have three knights. 93 . If B were a knight. Therefore B must b e a knave. C is really a knave. But A says truthfully that there is at least one knave. is not a werewolf. hence A is the werewolf. 92 OTHER MYSTERIES . Hence C is not a werewolf. Hence C is not a werewolf. Then his statement is false. namely that if A were a knave. his statement is true. 92 . Thus A is the only knight. hence the werewolf is a knave. and we would have a knave making a true statement. S o again A is the werewolf. Also B. Therefore B is a knave. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _____ You should select B. and we would have three knights. Then his state ment is true. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ A must be a knight for the same reasons that B was a knight in the last problem. S o B is a knave. So again A is the werewolf. hence again cannot be B. it would be true that at least one of the three was a knave. Suppose B is a knight. Also B can't b e a werewolf (since we are given that the werewolf is a knight) . so there really is at least one knave present. 94. then C would be a werewolf and also a knight and we would have two knights. because of A' s statement. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Again. which means that the werewolf is actually a knight. If B were a knight then C would b e a werewolf.

Hence also your statement is false. hence you must be a rich knight. "I am a poor knave. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ All you have to say is. " Now." If he is a knight then he is telling the truth. regardless of what the brother is. hence you must be a rich knave. The simplest I can think of is that you ask. 97 . and if the brother answers "No. hence he and Elizabeth are of HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 93 . hence you-a knave would be making a true statement. Therefore you are a knight. " She would reason that if you were a knave. You say. hence E lizab eth must also be a knight. But you are a knave. hence he and E lizabeth are of different types. Let us prove this. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ This problem has several solutions." then Elizabeth must be a knight. so you are not a poor knight. Suppose he answers "Yes . "I am not a poor knight. which means that Elizabeth is again a knight. But you are a knight." then E lizabeth must be a knave. the brother is either a knight or a knave. Suppose Arthur answers "No. hence your statement would be true. Thus if Arthur answers "Yes." E lizabeth is a knight. then his statement that Elizabeth is of the same type is true. 96 . " S he will immedi ately know that you can't be a knight (since a knight would never lie and �ay he is a poor knave) . "Are you and E lizabeth of the same type?" The interesting thing is that if he answers "Yes. Hence also your statement is true.95 . If he is a knave. you would indeed not be a poor knight. hence you must be a knave. then his statement is false. regardless of whether the brother is a knight or knave. so you are not a poor knave. If he is a knight.

but then you. So if he answers "No. "I am guilty. hence must again be a knave. then you should pick B for your bride. then his statement is false. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Again. then you would be a knave (since it is given that the criminal is known to be a knave). a knave. and knaves are of the lowest rank. so again B is not a werewolf." then Elizabeth is a knave. Then B is actually of higher rank than C. then B is certainly not the werewolf. The simplest and most elegant solution I know is to pick one of them say A-and ask her. normals are of the middle rank. rather than that B is of lower rank than C. lWe recall that knights are of the highest rank. which means that B is a knight and C normal. One statement which would acquit you is. "Is B of lower rank than C?" l S uppose A answers "Yes!' Then you should pick B for your bride for the following reasons: Suppose A is a knight. Then B really is of lower rank than C.different types. hence Elizabeth must b e a knave. would b e making a true statement. If he is a knave. a knave. In this case. 98 . hence B is a knave and C is normal. if A answers "Yes" to your que stion. regardless of whether A is a knight. can actually say that. hence you are innocent. so in this case pick C for your bride. Suppose that A is a knave. If A is normal. 94 OTHER MYSTERIES . for the jury will correctly reason thus: If you really were guilty. Thus. or a normal." then it is the same as if she should assert that C is of lower rank that B. Thus the assumption that you are guilty leads to a contra diction. a knave. and it will indeed acquit you. since it is false. hence E lizabeth really is of the same type. If A should answer "No. since A is." You. there are several ways to solve this. B is not the werewolf (since C is) .

A more direct argument the jury could have used is this: Either you are a knave or you are not (remember. the jury doesn't know whether or not you are a knave) . hence you are innocent. since the guilty one is a knave. Then his statement is true. If. since he is not a knave. hence you are innocent. 100. the jury could rationally deduce that you are inno cent. He can't be a guilty knave. hence he is an innocent knight. then you are certainly innocent." Let' s say you phrase it a bit more simply thus: "I am either an innocent knight or a . since the guilty one is known to be a knight. All you need say is. then. hence he is either an innocent knight or a guilty knave. since they are rational and have used correct reasoning. l02� One solution i s to say: "Either I am a knight and innocent. " The jury would then reason about you as follows: Step One: Suppose he is a knight." The jury will reason that if you are a knight (which they don't know) then your statement is true. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ This is a sort of " dual" to problem 99. if anything. after making a state ment. HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 95 . guilty knave. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ No such statement is possible. 10 1 . But this is contrary to the assumption that you are guilty. Hence he is innocent. or I am a knave and guilty.The above reasoning is an example of a reductio ad absurdum argument (proof of the falsity of a statement by reducing it to absurdity) . "I am innocent. and if you are not a knight. then again you are innocent. If you are not a knave. it must be the case that you really are innocent. If you are a knave then your statement is false. even simpler. and.

Therefore he is not a guilty knight. " The jury would reason this way: Step One: Suppose he (meaning "you " ) were a knave. since knaves don't make true statements. Step Two: Now we know that he is either a knight or normal. I might remark that you could alternatively have said. hence you must be normal. hence he is neither an innocent knight nor a guilty knave. All you need to say is.Step Two: Suppose he is a knave. But he is a knight. so his statement would be true. since the guilty one is not normal. Suppose he is a knight. Then he must be an innocent knave. "If I am a knight then I am innocent. " Neither a knight nor a knave could say that. Hence he must be an inno cent knight. Then his statement is true. Therefore he cannot be a knave. Step Three: If he is normal. " 105. 103. " The jury would reason this way: "Obviously he is not a knight. 104. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Yes." or you could have said. "Either I am not a knight or I am innocent. hence certainly not a guilty knight. hence innocent. So he is 96 OTHER MYSTERIES . "I am a guilty knave. then he is certainly innocent. "I am not a guilty knight. you could say. "I am a knave. he is not a guilty knave. This is impossib le. If he is normal. you could say. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Yes . Then his statement is false. hence also innocent. But he is a knave. In particular. This is indeed quite simple. he is innocent. Then he is not a knight.

Given any set of statements you make. A true statement which would convince the King is: "I am not a knight. " 1068 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ No amount of statements could possibly do this. you have just made a false statement. the King will know that although you are normal. Then his statement is false. one statement i s enough. a normal person could make the same statements. So there is no way you can marry this King' s daugh ter. Hence he is an innocent knave. If he is normal.normal or a knave.) A false state ment which would do the job is: "I am a knave. since a normal person can say any thing. A knight also couldn't make that state ment (because a knight is neither a normal who is carrying HOW TO AVOID WEREWOLVES: SOLUTIONS 97 . that you are now carrying exactly eleven dollars in your pocket." I wish to remark (in connection with the next prob lem) that if you make the first statement. Suppose he is a knave. Then a statement you could make is: "Either I am normal and am now carrying exactly eleven dollars in my pocket." (Neither a knight nor a knave could say this. then the King will know that although you are normal. 108. or else I am a knave. so he is not a guilty knave. " A knave could never make that statement (be cause it is true that a knave is either a normal who is carrying eleven dollars or a knave) . In both cases. you have just made a true statement. Sorry! Better luck on the next island! 107. he is innocent. and if you make the second statement. Take any proposition whose truth or falsity i s unknown to the King-for example.

but he cannot know whether your statement is true or false without knowing how much money you are carrying.eleven dollars nor a knave) . 98 OTHER MYSTERIES . Therefore the King will know that you are normal.

(0)(Q)O Logic Puzzles

PREAMBLE

Many of the puzzles in this chapter deal with so-called conditional statements: statements of the form "If P is true then Q is true, " where P, Q are statements under considera tion. Before turning to puzzles of this type, we must care fully clear up some ambiguities which might arise. There are certain facts about such statements which everyone agrees on, but there are others about which there appears to be considerable disagreement. Let us turn to a concrete example. C onsider the following statement: (1) If John is guilty, then his wife is guilty. E veryone will agree that if John is guilty and if statement (1) is true, then his wife is also guilty. E veryone will also agree that if John is guilty and his wife is innocent, then statement (1) must be false. Now, suppose it is known that his wife is guilty, but it is not known whether John is guilty or innocent. Would you then say that statement (1) is true or not? Would you not say that whether John is guilty or whether he is innocent, his wife is guilty in any c ase? O r would you not say: If John is

LOGIC PUZZLES

99

guilty then his wife is guilty, and if John is innocent then his wife is guilty? Illustrations of this use of language abound in the literature: In Rudyard Kipling's story Riki-Tiki- Tavi, the cobra says to the terrified family, "If you move I will strike, . and if you don't move I will strike. " This means nothing more or less than: "I will strike. " There is also the story of the Z en-master Tokusan, who used to answer all questions, as well as nonquestions, with blows from his stick. His famous saying is: "Thirty blows when you have something to say; thirty blows just the same when you have nothing to say." The upshot is that if a statement Q is true outright, then so is the statement, "If P then Q" (as well as the statement, "If not P, then Q") . The most controversial case of all is this: Supposing P, Q are both false. Then is the statement, "If P then Q" true or false? Or does it depend on what P and Q are? Returning to our example, if John and his wife are both innocent, then should statement (1) be called true or not? We shall return to this vital question shortly. A related question is this: We have already agreed that if John is guilty and his wife innocent, then statement (1) must be false. Is the converse true? That is, if statement (1) is false, does it follow that John must b e guilty and his wife innocent? Put otherwise, is it the case that the only way that (1) can be false is that John be guilty and his wife innocent? Well, according to the way most logicians, mathematicians, and scientists use the words "if . . . then, " the answer is "yes," and this is the convention we shall adopt. In other words, given any two statements P and Q, whenever I write "If P then Q" I shall mean nothing more nor less than "It is not the case that P is true and Q is false . " In particular, this means that if John and his wife are both innocent, then statement (1) is to b e regarded as true. For the only way the statement can be false is that John is guilty and his wife is innocent, and this state of affairs can't hold if John and his wife are both innocent. Stated otherwise, if John and his 100

OTHER MYSTERIES

wife are both innocent, then it is certainly not the case that John is guilty and his wife is innocent, therefore the state� ment cannot be false. The following is an even more bizarre example: (2) If Confucius was born in Texas, then I am Dracula. All statement (2) is intended to mean is that it is not the case that Confucius was born in Texas and that I am not Dracula. This indeed is so, since Confucius was not born in Texas. Therefore statement (2) is to be regarded as true. Another way to look at the matter is that the only way (2) can be false is if Confucius was born in Texas and I am not Dracula. Well, since Confucius was not born in Texas, then it can't be the case that Confucius was b orn in Texas and that I am not Dracula. In other words, (2) cannot be false, so it must be true. Now let us consider two arbitrary statements P, Q, and the following statement formed from them: (3) If P then Q. This statement is symbolized: P -> Q, and is alternatively read: "P implies Q." The use of the word " implies" may b e somewhat unfortunate, but i t has found its way into the literature in this sense. All the statement means, as we have seen, is that it is not the case that P is true and Q is false. Thus we have the following facts:

Fact 1 : If P is false, then P -> Q is automatically true. Fact 2: If Q is true, then P -> Q is automatically true. Fact 3: The one and only way that P .... Q can be false is that

P is true and Q is false.

Fact 1 is sometimes paraphrased: "A false proposition im plies any proposition. " This statement came as quite a shock to many· a philosopher (see Chapter 1 4 , number 2 44, for a further discussion) . Fact 2 is sometimes paraphrased: "A true proposition is implied by any proposition." LOGIC PUZZLES

101

A Truth-Table Summary

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Given any two statements P, Q, there are always exactly four possibilities: (1) P, Q are both true; (2) P is true and Q is false; (3) P is false and Q is true; (4) P, Q are both false. One and only one of these possibilities must hold. Now, let us consider the statement, "If P then Q (symbo lized: P -+ Q) . Can it b e determined in which of the four cases it holds and in which ones it doesn't? Yes it can, by the following analysis: Case 1 : P and Q are both true. In this case Q is true, hence P

....

Case 2: P is true and Q is false. In this case, P -> Q i s false by Case 3 : P is false and Q is true. Then P -> Q i s true b y Fact 1 (also by Fact 2). Case 4 : P is false and Q is false. Then P -+ Q is true by

Fact 1 . Fact 3 .

Q is true by Fact 2 .

These four cases are all summarized in the following table, called the truth-table for implication.

P

(1) (2) (3) (4) T T F F

Q

T F T F

P -+ Q

T F T T

The first row, T,T,T (true, true, true) , means that when P is true and Q is true, P -+ Q is true. The second row, T,F,F, means that when P is true and Q is false then P -+ Q is false. The third row says that when P is false and Q is true, P ...... Q is true, and the fourth row says that when P is false and Q is false, then P ...... Q is true. We note that P -> Q is true in three out of four of those cases; only in the second is it false. 1 02

OTHER MYSTERIES

Another Property of Implication. Another important prop erty of implication is this: To show that a statement "If P then Q" holds, it suffice s to assume P as premise and then show that Q must follow. In other words, if the assumption of P leads to Q as a conclusion, then the statement "If P then Q" is e stablished. We shall henceforth refer to this fact as Fact 4.

A. APPLICATION TO KNIGHTS AND KNAVE S

1 0 9.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

We have two people A,B, each of whom is either a knight or a knave. Suppose A makes the following statement: "If I am a knight, then so is B." Can it b e determined what A and B are?

1 10 .

_ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

S omeone asks A, "Are you a knight?" He replies, "If I'm a knight, then I'll eat my hat!" Prove that A has to eat his hat.

1 1 1.

___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

A says, "If I'm a knight, then two plus two e quals four." Is A a knight or a knave?

1 12.

___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

A says, "If I'm a knight, then two plus two e quals five. " What would you conclude?

1 13.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _

**Given two people, A,B, b oth of whom are knights or knaves. A says, "If B is a knight then I am a knave. "
**

LOGIC PUZ ZLES

103

A and B were court witnesses. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ On the island of knights and knaves. Are A and B necessarily of the same type? (We recall that two people from the island of knights and knaves are said to be of the same type if they are either both knights or both knaves.C are? B. C an it b e determined what any of A. so is C. so is Y. three inhabitants A. _ ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose the following two statements are true: (1) I love Betty or I love Jane. A and B make the following statements: A: B is a knight.B. and each of A. B: E ither X is innocent or Y is guilty. X and Y.What are A and B? 1 14. LOVE AND LOGI C 1 16 . C are being interviewed.B .) 1 15.B is either a knight or a knave. B: If A is a knight. in a robbery. Does it necessarily follow that I love Betty? Does it neces sarily follow that I love Jane? 104 OTHER MYSTERIES . __�__ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Two individuals. (2) If I love Betty then I love Jane. The witnesses make the fol lowing statements: A: If X is guilty. were being tried for participation .

S ome one asks me. Jane. This time we are given two girls. Dianne. Aren't logicians a bit silly? Shouldn't I know whether or not I love Betty. "Is it really true that if you love E va then you also love Margaret?" I reply. then it is true. and then replied. . Margaret. Sue. E va. (4) If I love Dianne. . E va and Margaret. "Yes.1 17. Suppose the following facts are given: (1) I love at least one of the three girls. if a wife asked her academic husband. and Dianne." Which girl do I necessarily love? 1 19. Sue. etc . then I also love Sue . "If it is true. " Does it follow that I love Betty? Does it follow that I love Jane? 1 1 8 .. calculating with paper and pencil. Suppose someone asks me. This time we are given three girls. " If it is true. without having to sit down and figure it out? Wouldn't it b e funny. then I also love Marcia. "Is it really true that if you love Betty then you also love Jane?" I reply. "Just a minute dear. (2) If I love Sue but not Dianne. Marcia. Marcia. and if I love E va. it turns out that I do"? I am reminded of the allegedly true story of the philosopher Leibniz who was once wondering whether to LOGIC PUZ ZLES 105 . "Do you love me?" and he answered. (3) I either love b oth Dianne and Marcia or I love neither one. Which of the girls do I love? Discussion. then I love Betty. " and sat down for half an hour. then I love E va.

" Is this true or false? c. I happen to know that this is false. 1 20 . Q is true. and sure enough it finally boiled. It also means that P. and if Q ' is true then so is P.marry a certain lady. is a bit surprising. one list of advantages and one list of dis advantages. _____ An old proverb says: "A watched kettle never boils. " This statement means that if P i s true then s o i s Q. He sat down with paper and p encil and made two lists. so he decided not to marry her. I S THERE GOLD ON THIS I S LAND? The puzzles of the last two groups were concerned largely with conditional statements-statements of the form "If P is true. Now. (2) If I love Linda thel1 I love Kathy. so is the other. " Now." Stated more precisely. I make the following two statements: (1) I love Linda. Am I a knight or a knave? 121" A Variant of an Old Proverb.. ------- This problem. Q are 106 OTHER MYSTERIES ." The puzzles of this group will be con cerned largely with so-called biconditional statements statements of the form "P is true if and only if Q is true. "A watched kettle never boils unless it is watched. It means. The second list turned out to be longer. in other words. though simple. I once watched a kettle over a hot stove. so is Q. what about the following proverb? "A watched kettle never boils unless you watch it. that if either one of P. S uppose it is given that I am either a knight or a knave.

F2: Any proposition e quivalent to a false proposition is false. A. Is There Gold on This Island? _ _ _ _ _ On a certain island of knights and knave s. "Is the statement that you are a knight equivalent to the statement that there is gold on this LOGIC PUZZLES 107 . whether there is gold on this island. 122. Suppose. " Our problem has two parts: (a) Can it be determined whether A is a knight or a knave? (b) Can it be determined whether there is gold on the island? 123.. " We note the following two facts: F l : Any proposition e quivalent to a true proposition is true. You arrive on the island and ask one of the natives. The statement "P if and only if Q" is symbolically written: "P +-+ Q... instead of A having volunteered this information. you had asked A. He makes the following response: "There is gold on this island if and only if I am a knight." The truth-table for P +-+ Q is this: P Q T F p . Q T T F F T F F T F T The statement "P if and only if Q" is sometimes read "P is equivalent to Q" or "P and Q are equivalent.either both true or both false. it is rumored that there is gold buried on the island.

What question should I ask? 1 08 OTHER MYSTERIES . I rushed over to island A. Well. Captain Marston-the pirate who had buried the gold.C. (2) IF THERE ARE ANY NORMALS ON ISLAND A. it was seen to consist of two sentences. and there was a possibility that there were some normals on the island. How I Became Rich. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This story is unfortunately not true. My problem was to think of a question such that upon hearing the answer. But it is an interesting story. knave. Suppose he had answered "No. I could then point to one of the islands ' and be sure there was gold on that island.island?" Had he answered "Yes. I found out about three neighboring islands A. The message. I had the good fortune to find the map of the islands left by the famous. When decoded.B. . but I didn't know which ones. of course. I knew the natives there knew all about the gold situation. The King of the island guessed what I was up to and told me in no uncertain terms that I would be allowed to ask only one question of any native I chose at randOIll. I would have no way of knowing whether the native was a knight." Could you then tell whether or not there is gold on the island? 1 2 4." the problem would have reduced to the preceding one. island A was inhabited by knights and knaves. but I didn't know whether there were any normals or not. I knew that there was gold buried on at least one of the three islands. was in code. or normal. THEN THERE IS GOLD ON TWO OF THE ISLANDS. but capricious. Islands B and C were uninhabited. Here is the transcription: (1) THERE IS NO GOLD ON ISLAND A. so I will tell it to you anyway.

and they make the following statements: A: There is an even number of knaves on this island. graciously introduce d me t o three o f the natives.125. is there gold on the island or not? LOGIC PUZ ZLES 109 . You are told that on one of the two islands there is an even number of knights and on the other one there is an odd number of knights. All the inhabitants know how many knights and how many knave s live on the island. A. . Is there a way of finding out in two questions whether there is gold on the island? 126. You are also told that there is gold on the island containing the even number of knights. Assuming that you are neither a knight nor a knave and that at the moment you are the only visitor on the island. knaves.B.B.C. It was rumored that there was gold on the island. The King of the island. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Another time I was visiting a different island of knights. and normals. C: I am a knight if and only if A and B are of the same type . but there is no gold on the other island. _____ __ Suppose there are two neighboring islands each exclusively inhabited by knights and knaves (there are no normals) . I was allowed to ask two yes-no questions to whichever ones I wished. there is an odd number of people on the island. who was a knight. You pick ope of the two islands at random and visit it.C. A. and told me that at most one of them was normal. and I wanted to find out whether there was. B: Right now. An Inferential Puzzle. You are interviewing three inhabi tants.

S OLUTIONS 109-1 12 . " then the speaker must be a knight and P must be true ! This is quite surprising. can sometimes be a bit stupid!) As for 1 1 1 . which is that given any proposition P. From the se two facts it follows that P must be true. As for 1 1 0. then we see that A must be a knight and his statement is true. Then the statement '. As for 1 0 9 . and we can prove this in two ways: (1) Suppose that A is a knight. Hence a knave would never make such a statement. the answer again is that A is a knight. then it follows that P must b e true. then the statement. Thus the assumption that A is a knight leads to P as a conclusion. Thus the answer to 1 0 9 is that A and B are both knights. We see that A must be a knight and that he must eat his hat. Let us apply this principle to our puzzles. we have proved that if A is a knight then P. (This proves. we take for P the proposition that A will eat his hat.. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The se four problems all embody the same basic idea. that knights. if we take P to be the proposition that B is a knight. (2) An alternative way of seeing this is the following. We recall that a false proposition implies any proposition. So if a person who is either a knight or a knave makes such a statement. "If I'm a knight then P. incidentally. But this is precisely what A asserted! Therefore A must be a knight. though doubtless virtuous and honorable. if any person A on the island of knights and knave s says. 1 1° OTHER MYSTERIES . he can only be a knight and P must be true. Therefore (recalling Fact 4 of Implication) . And since we have j ust proved that if A is a knight then P.'If A is a knight then P ' must be a true statement (since knights always tell the truth) . Therefore if A is !Jot a knight. hence B is a knight. "If A is a knight then P" is automatically a true statement. S o A is a knight and it is true that if A is a knight then P.

" But if I am a knave. This is another case of reductio ad absurdum. then I am a knave." then I must b e a knight. hence it must be false that B is a knight. a true pro position is implied by any proposition. But A is a knight (by assumption) . Therefore A must b e a knight. so A and B must be of the same type. "If P.As for 1 1 2 . the propo sition that B is a knight implies the false proposition that A is a knave. 1 Hence B is a knave. no knight could make such a statement. In the above case. is saying that it is not the case that X is guilty and Y is innocent. so A and B are really saying the same thing in different words. hence if the state ment "I am a knave" is true. so is e"-is true. 1 14� __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ A. 1 15. since this would imply that A is a knave. " As we recall. then so is the complete state ment "If P. 1Any proposition which implies a false proposition must be false. Then so is B (since A says he is) . Then B's statement-HIf A is a knight. Therefore the two statements are either both true or both false. then I am a knave. nor could a knave either. which he isn't. I could never make that true statement. This is but another way of saying that either X is innocent or Y is guilty. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ __ __ __ Suppose A is a knight. Hence also it is true that if B is a knight then A is a knave (because A says it is true) . 1 1 3 .. Then B can't b e a knight. in effect. Hence if I say. the correct conclusion is that the author is again spoofing! The problem is a paradox. we first must prove that only a knight can make a statement of the form "If P. A must be a knight and B must be a knave . then I am a knave. since a true proposition can never imply a false proposition. LOGIC PUZZLES: SOLUTIONS I I I . therefore C is a knight (under the assumption that A is) . To prove this.

just because it doesn't follow from the given conditions that I love Betty. so is C. which is a contradiction. On the other hand. it follows that I love Jane. Either I love Betty or I don't. we reason as follows. Therefore if I don't love Betty. But it is given that if that statement is true. So in either case (whether I love Betty or whether I don't) . 1 17 . Therefore C is a knight too. It doesn't follow that I love Betty but it does follow that I love Jane. Then the statement "If I love Betty then I love Jane" must be a true statement (since a false proposition implies any proposition) . not that I love Jane. And we have shown that if A is a knight. so A is also a knight. but that I love B etty. then I must love Betty. For suppose I don't love Betty.. then by condition ( 1 ) . B said just that. if I love B etty. Incidentally. it does not mean that it follows that I don 't love Betty! It is quite possible that I love Betty too-maybe even more than Jane. hence B is a knight. If I don't love Betty. any female reader who happens to have the name "Betty" shouldn't be worried. 2 Well. The only way out of the contradiction is that I do love Betty. By fact 4 of implication it follows that if A is a knight then C is a knight. then by condition (2) I must love Jane as well. 'we did this by assuming as a premise that A is a knight and drawing as a conclu sion that C is a knight.. To see that I love Jane. so is C.We have just shown that if A is a knight. 112 OTHER MYSTERIES . it must be Jane that I love {since it is given that I love at least one of them} . 1 1 6 . __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ This time it follows. Therefore all three are knights. Then A's statement that B is a knight is true. it follows that I do love Betty. It cannot be determined whether or not I love Jane.

" (For example.1 18. But ! do love E va. Then I would love Linda but not Kathy. it is true that if I love E va I also love Margaret. If I were a knave. hence I would love Linda. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I must love all three girls. to say. "If I love Eva then I also love Margaret. So I love all three. __ __ __ __ __ __ �_______ To say "P is false unless Q" is but another way of saying "If P then Q. Let P b e the state ment. __ __ __ __ �-____ __ __ It follows that I must love both girls. So it is impossible that (1) and (2) are both false. Suppose (2) were false. (2) H I love Eva. This means that (1) would be true. Therefore by (2) .. here is one: By (3) I either love both Dianne and Marcia or I love neither. 121. then both ( 1 ) and (2) would have to be false. and I don't love Marcia. Since I love Dianne. P must be true-i.e. Suppose I love neither. hence I cannot be a knave. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I must be a knight. We are given: (1) H P is true. then I love Eva. hence I love them both. Then by ( 1) I must love Sue. then P is true. Therefore it is not the case that I love neither Dianne nor Marcia. Therefore I also love Margaret. "I won't go to the movies LOGIC PUZZLES: SOLUTIONS 1 1 3 . then by (4) I also love Sue. 1 20 . Therefore I love Sue but not Dianne. Therefore I do love Eva. There are several ways to prove this. This contradicts statement (2) . 1 19. We have seen in the solution of the preceding problem that from (1) it follows that I love Eva.

suppose the speaker is a knave. It is not possible to determine whether the speaker is a knight or a knave. since a watched kettle is certainly watched. For purposes of this and the other problems of this section. is true. 114 OTHER MYSTERIES . "I am a knight if and only if P. "If a watched kettle boils. Then his statement is false. "If I'm a knight then P. "I am a knight if and only if P. It is of interest to compare this with a principle es tablished in the last section: If a knight or knave says. On the other hand. But if a knight or knave says. nevertheless there must be gold on the island. of course. Also. and also K is true. To see this. since he is a knave. hence P must be true. Since P is not equivalent to the false proposition K.") Thus the statement "A watched kettle never boils unless it is watched" is but another way of saying." then P must be true (regardless of whether the speaker is a knight or a knave). then P must be true (for if it were false. 122. P must be true. let us establish once and for all the following basic principle: If a speaker (who is either a knight or a knave) makes the statement." then we can conclude that P is true. " This.unless you go with me" is equivalent to saying. but we cannot determine whether or not he is a knight. Then P is equivalent to a true statement. The speaker says that K is e quivalent to P. then it is watched. so P is not equivalent to K. "If I go to the movies. then it would be equivalent to K) . whether it boils or not. " then we can conclude that he is a knight and that P is true. let K be the proposition that the speaker is a knight. K is false. then you will go with me. Suppose the speaker is indeed a knight. Then K really is equivalent to P. Thus. whether the speaker is a knight o r a knave.

Then G actually is equivalent to K (since the knave said they were not equivalent) . since it is not e quivalent to the true proposition K. The speaker. Well. we shall refer to it as the fundamental principle. LOGIC PUZZLES: SOLUTIONS 1 1 5 . then there is gold on both island B and island C. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ We know in advance that there is no gold on island A. there is gold on island B or island C. The last two problems j ointly imply a very important principle well known to "knight-knave" experts. and if anyone on island A is normal. must be false. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ __ __ Yes. then you can find out from him in just one question whether P is trqe or false. and let K again be the statement that the speaker is a knight. So. You just ask him. if P is any statement at all." is asserting that G is not e quivalent to K. suppose the speaker is a knight. On the other hand. But K is false (since the speaker is a knave) ." then you know thatP is true. Then it really is the case that G is not e quivalent to K. As seen in the solutions of the last two problems. his "No" answer to the question indicates that G is false. you could. must be false. by answering "No. suppose he is a knave. 124. Now. Thus G. Let G be the statement that there is gold on the island. whose truth or falsity you wish to ascertain. if he answers "No. in this case there is no gold on the island. being eqivalent to the false proposition I('. Discussion. "Is the statement that you are a knight equivalent to the statement that P is true?" If he answers "Yes. if a person known to b e a knight or knave knows the answer to P. K is true.123. . This principle will b e used in the solution of the next three problems. " then you know that P is false. since he is a knight. Therefore G. S o there is n o gold o n the island. whether the speaker is a knight or a knave.

Well. If he is normal. You do this by asking A." Is A is either a knight or a knave. so there is certainly gold on island B . then there is no gold on island B (again by the fundamental principle) . Suppose he answers "No." If he is a knight or a knave. then B is not normal (again by the fundamental principle) . then again there is gold on islands B and C. then there is gold on island B (by the fundamental principle e stablished in the solution of the preceding prob lem) . Thus a "Yes" answer means that C is not normal. the question I asked the speaker was: "Is the statement that you are a knight equivalent to the statement that there is gold on island B?" Suppose he answers "Yes. so there is gold on island C ." If he is either a knight or a knave. if you get a " No" answer. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ This problem is solved by two uses of the fundamental principle (see solution of problem 1 2 3 for an explanation of the fundamental principle) . if you get a "Yes" answer from A. Thus a "No" answer means that B is not normal. b e cause A is. then B must b e normal (by the fundamental principle) . In one question it is possible to locate one of the three who you know is definitely not normal. This means that C is not normal. Thus a "Yes" answers means that there is gold on island B. so again C can't b e normal. " If he is a knight or a knave. This means that there must be gold on island C . Thus you know you are questioning someone 116 OTHER MYSTERIES . if h e is normal. then you pick B. If A is not a knight or a knave. On the other hand. then again B is not normal. then he must be normal. "Is the statement that you are a knight equivalent to the statement that B is normal?" Suppose he answers "Yes. Thus a "No" answer means that there is gold on island C . So. then you pick C to ask your second question. then there is gold o n both island B and island C. Suppose A answers "No. 125. If A is not a knight or a knave.

they are both knights or both knaves. and the only visitor on the island.e. hence there are an even number of natives on the island. so again there is gold on the island. LOGIC PUZ ZLES: SOLUTIONS 1 1 7 . you will again get an even number. But you are neither a knight nor a knave. On the other hand. S o in this case. I presume that you know that the sum of two even whole numbers is an even number. 1 2 -8 =4 . You then ask him the same question as in problem 1 2 2 . A "Yes" answer means that there is gold. 1 26 . This means that there are an odd number of knaves on the island and an odd number of knights and knaves {an even number of people. Suppose they are b oth true. (For example. 1 3 -7 =6. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____ If you didn't know the fundamental principle. including yourself} . Then by A's statement. By B ' s statement there are an odd number of people including yourself.) From C ' s statement it follows (by the fundamental principle) that A and B really are of the same type. . and if you subtract an odd number from an odd number.who is either a knight or a knave. This means that if you sub stract an even number from an even number you will get an even number. i. Thus their statements are either b oth true or both false. this problem would be most baffling. But now that you know the funda mental principle (see solution of problem 1 2 3 ) . Then again there must be an even number of knights. and the sum of two odd numbers is again even. there are an even number of knaves on the island. whether the statement that he is a knight is equivalent to the statement that there is gold on the island. subtracting the even number of knaves from the even number of knights and knaves. there is gold on the island. a "No" answer means that there isn't. suppose both statements are false. the problem is quite easy. you get an even number of knights. So. namely.

I once came across a casket which bore the following inscription: THIS CASKET WAS NOT MADE BY ANY SON OF BELLINI 118 OTHER MYSTERIES . Cellini.. or a son of Cellini. Bellini and Cellini had sons who were also casket makers. they are quite valuable-especially those made by Bellini or Cellini. all caskets were made either by Bellini. Let it be understood that the Bellini and Cellini families were the only casket makers of Renaissance Italy. any son of Bellini wrote only true statements on those caskets he fashioned. Now. A. W e recall that whenever Bellini fashioned a casket he always wrote a true inscription on it. a son of B ellini. WHOSE CASKET? 1 27 . and whenever Cellini fashioned a casket he always wrote a false inscription on it. It you should ever come across any of these caskets.ellini or Cel lini? This i s a se quel to the story of Portia' s caskets. The sons took after their fathers. and any son of Cellini wrote only false statements on his caskets.

A Florentine Nobleman. ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Another time I came across a casket whose inscription enabled me to deduce that the casket must have been made by Cellini. Can you figure out what the inscription could have been? 1 2 9 . This nobleman knew the story of Portia' s caskets and designed his game accordingly. silver. the high point of which was a game in which the prize was a valuable jewel. Cellini.. From the Sublime to the Ridiculous. __ Suppose you came across a casket bearing the following inscription: THIS CASKET WAS MADE BY ME What would you conclude? 131. and lead.. and inside one of them was the j ewel.Who made this casket. The most valuable caskets of all are those bearing an in scription such that one can deduce that the casket must have been made by Bellini or Cellini. I once had the good fortune to come across such a casket. but one cannot deduce which one. Can you figure out what the inscription could have been? 1 30 . He had three caskets. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ A certain Florentine nobleman gave very lavish entertain ments. Bellini. a son of B ellini. or a son of Cellini? 128. gold. He explained to the company that each of the BELLINI OR CELLINI? 119 .

1 32. would be awarded the j ewel. a son of B ellini. but given a pair. and with each of these four possibilities there were four possibilities for the maker of the silver casket. The two families had great fun designing pairs such that intelli gent posterity could figure out. who were the makers. or partly figure out. Cellini. Given any set. the Bellini and Cellini families were the closest of friends and would sometimes collaborate in making a pair. it sometimes happened that one p erson made one of the caskets and another person made the other. Actually. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I once came across the following pair: 1 20 OTHER MYSTERIES . there are sixteen possibilities: the gold casket could have been made by Bellini. CASKET PAIRS In some museums can be found pairs of caskets-one gold and one silver-made and originally sold as sets. Of course.caskets was made by Bellini or C ellini {and not any of their sons}o The first person who could guess which casket contained the jewel. Here are the inscriptions: Lead ----� THE JEWEL IS IN THE SILVER CASKET THEN THE SILVER C ASKET WAS FASHIONED BY BELLINI IF THE JEWEL IS IN THIS CASKET THEN THE GOLD CASKET WAS FASHIONED BY CELLINI IF THE CASKET WHICH REALLY CONTAINS THE JEWEL WAS FASHIONED BY CELLINI Which casket contains the jewel? B. or a son of Cellini. only one person would make any one casket. and who could prove his guess correct.

BOTH CASKETS OF THIS SET WERE MADE BY MEMBERS OF THE CELLINI FAMILY NEITHER OF THESE CASKETS WAS MADE BY ANY SON OF BELLINI OR ANY SON) OF CELLINI Who made each casket? 133. C onsider the following pair: BELLINI OR CELLINI? 121 . Gold __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Consider the following pair: S ilver. � _ _� Silver IF THIS CASKET WAS MADE BY ANY MEMBER OF THE BELLINI FAMILY THEN THE SILVER CASKET WAS MADE BY CELLINI THE GOLD CASKET WAS MADE BY A SON OF BELLINI Who made each casket? 134. 135. � _ _ THE SILVER CASKET WAS MADE BY A SON OF BELLINI THE GOLD CASKET WAS NOT MADE BY A SON OF BELLINI Prove that at least one of them was made by Bellini. __ __ __ __ _____________ I once came across the following pair: Gold.

Gold snver ___ � THE SILVER CASKET WAS MADE BY CELLINI THE GOLD CASKET WAS NOT MADE BY CELLINI Prove that at least one of the caskets was made by a son of Cellini. I read the inscription on one of them. which to my amazement was the same as the first. and to my further amazement. I came across a pair of caskets and I was interested to know whether at least one of them was fashioned by Bellini. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The next adventure I had was particularly remarkable. but I could not tell from it whether at least one of them was made by Bellini. Can you figure out what these inscriptions could have been? 1 38 � Another time I came across a pair bearing identical inscrip tions from which I was able to infer that both caskets were 122 OTHER MYSTERIES .Silver __ _ THE SILVER CASKET WAS MADE BY A SON OF BELLINI THE GOLD CASKET WAS MADE BY A SON OF CELLINI Prove that at least one of the caskets was made by Bellini or Cellini. 1 36 . Consider the following pair: Gold :. Then I looked at the other inscription. I could then tell that both caskets must have been made by Bellini. 1 37 ...

Another time I came across a pair bearing identical inscrip tions from which I was able to infer that either they were both made by Bellini or both made by Cellini. (I understand that it is the only such pair ever made. I once had the good fortune to come across such a pair. . but one cannot know which casket was made by whom. and I was told that a logician was needed to help straighten out a baffling mystery. (2) From neither casket alone can one deduce that the pair is a B ellini-C ellini pair. A Delightful Adventure. Four caskets had been found. It was known that they formed two sets. but I couldn't tell which. from neither casket alone could I have inferred this. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The most valuable pair of caskets which one can find is one satisfying the following conditions: (1) From the inscriptions one can deduce that one of them was made by Bellini and the other by C ellini. I read an ad in the papers: WANTED-A LOGICIAN. so it was not known which gold casket BELLINI OR CELLINI? 123 . Can you supply such an inscription? 139. Can you supply such an inscription? 1 40 .) Well. I went to the museum which had placed the ad. Also. but somehow the sets had gotten mixed up. (Fortunately it was printed in English.) Can you supply such a pair of inscriptions? 141. but from neither casket alone could I have inferred that even one of them was made by C ellini. two gold and two silver. I can't read Italian.made by Cellini. _ ______ Once in my bachelor days I was in Florence.

Not only that. and I also received a kiss of gratitude from one of the most charming ladies in Florence. the statement would be false. __ __ __ __ __ __ _ __ __ __ __ It was made by B ellini. for which I received an additional bonus (consisting. among other things. If ISince Benvenuto Cellini was quite a braggart. I was shown the four caskets and was soon able to straighten out the difficulty. for which I receive d an excellent consultant fee. why shouldn't I follow in his footsteps? 124 OTHER MYSTERIES . If a son of Bellini had made the casket. of an excellent case of Chianti) . which is impossible. but I was also able to establish which casket was made by whom. 1 Here are the four caskets: Casket A (Gold) Casket B (Gold) THE SILVER CASKET WAS MADE BY A MEMBER OF THE CELLINI F AMILY Casket C (Silver) EITHER THE SILVER CASKET WAS MADE BY A MEMBER OF THE CELLINI F AMILY OR BOTH CASKETS WERE MADE BY BELLINI Casket D (Silver) THE GOLD CASKET WAS MADE BY A MEMBER OF THE BELLINI FAMILY AND AT LEAST ONE OF THESE CASKETS WAS MADE BY A SON OF BELLINI OR OF CELLINI There are now two problems: THE GOLD CASKET WAS MADE BY A MEMBER OF THE BELLINI F AMILY (a) Should A be paired with C or D? (b) Who made each of the four caskets? S OLUTIONS 127.went with which silver casket.

then it is a Cellini. sup pose the gold casket was made by Bellini. 1 30 . 128$ __ __ __ __ __ ______ _____ One inscription which would work is: This casket was made by a son of Cellini. we would get the following contradiction. ______ ____ ___ __ __ __ __ "This casket was made by Bellini or a son of Cellini. This proves that the jewel does not lie in the lead casket. Suppose the j ewel is in the silver casket. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Step One: Suppose the lead casket was made by Bellini. and since the j ewel does lie in the silver casket (by assumption) then the silver casket is a Bellini. so it cannot be in the lead casket. hence the casket was made by Bellini or a son of Bellini. If it did. " __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The statement is obviously true. 131. On the other hand. Therefore it was made by Bellini. hence the j ewel lies in a C ellini casket. S o if the gold is a B ellini. BELLINI OR CELLINI: SOLUTIONS 125 . Then the state ment on it is true. Then the statement on it is true. From this would follow that the gold casket was made by C ellini.Cellini or a son of Cellini had made the casket. which is impossible. hence the j ewel lies in a Bellini casket. the state ment would be true. Then the statement on it is false. Step Two: Next we know that the j ewel cannot lie in the silver casket. hence is again not in the lead casket. 1 29 . First. suppose the lead casket was made by Cellini.

then it i s a Bellini. from which follows that the silver casket is not a Bellini. Then the inscription on the gold casket is true: "If the gold casket was made by a member of the B ellini family. We have thus proved that if the gold casket was made by a member of the Bellini family then the 126 OTHER MYSTERIES . Therefore the statement on the silver casket is false. 132. Therefore the statement on the silver casket is true. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ We recall that when an inhabitant of an island of knights and knaves says.On the other hand. " then the inhabitant must be a knight and the so-and-so must be true. then not both caskets were made by members of the C ellini family. then the silver casket was made by Cellini. "If I am a knight then so-and-so is true. we shall now show that the statement on the gold casket is true. Then the statement on the gold casket is false. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Clearly the statement on the gold casket cannot b e true. " But the gold casket was made by a memb er of the Bellini family (this is our assumption) . This proves that the j ewel cannot b e in the silver casket. suppose the gold casket is a Cellini. Suppose that the gold casket was made by a member of the Bellini family. therefore the silver casket was made by Cellini. Since the statement is false. S o if the gold casket is a Cellini. hence the silver casket was made by a member of the Bellini family. from which follows that the gold casket is a Bellini. which is impossible. or we would have a contradiction. So the gold casket was made by a member of the Cellini family. Therefore the gold casket was made by Cellini and the silver casket by Bellini. so neither casket was made by any of the sons. hence is a C ellini. By a similar argument. 133. Therefore it is in the gold casket.

2 In other words. if the statement on the gold casket is true. hence contains a true statement. In summary. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose that the statement on the silver casket is true. then it must have been made by B ellini. then the silver casket was made by B ellini. So the gold casket was made by Bellini and the silver casket was made by Cellini. therefore it was made by Bellini. Then the silver casket was made by a son of Bellini. we have proved that the inscription on the gold casket is true. Therefore the inscription on the silver casket is false.silver casket was made by Cellini. then the gold casket was made by Bellini. This means that the gold casket was not made by a son of B ellini. If the statement on the gold casket is false. We have again made use of fact 4 of implication (see last paragraph of the preamble of Chapter 8). 135. However. Suppose the statement on the gold casket is true.. then the silver casket was made 2Because the premise that the gold casket was made by a member of the Bellini family led to the conclusion that the silver casket was made by Cellini. Therefore the gold casket was in fact made by a member of the B ellini family. Since it is a true statement. but since the gold casket bears a true statement. Then the silver casket was not made by a son of Bellini. This. But the gold casket was made by a member of the Bellini family. BELLINI OR CELLINI: SOLUTIONS 127 . the statement on the silver casket must be true (since the false statement on the gold casket could not have been made by a son of Bellini) . 1 34 . Suppose the statement on the gold casket is false. yields the fact that the silver casket was made by Cellini. together with the established fact that if the gold casket was made by a memb er of the Bellini family then the silver casket was made by Cellini. So the silver casket was made by Bellini. so the gold casket was not made by a son of Bellini.

On the other hand. hence the gold inscription is false. Therefore. then the gold casket was not made by a son of Cellini. if the silver inscription is true. Then the silver inscription would also have to be true. This also means that the silver casket was not made by a son of Bellini. 136. then the silver casket was made by Bellini. So either the silver casket is a Bellini or the gold casket is a Cellini. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose the gold casket inscription were true. if the silver inscription is true. Then the gold casket was made by C ellini.by a member of the Bellini family. the gold casket was not made by Cellini. then the silver casket was made by Bellini. if the silver inscription is false. 137. hence the statement on it is false. Therefore the gold casket contains a false state ment but was not made by Cellini. suppose the statement on the silver casket is false. This is a contra diction. Thus the silver casket con tains a false statement but was not made by Cellini. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ There are many possible solutions to this and the next three problems. hence the statement on the gold casket-"the silver casket was made by Cellini" must b e false. so the silver casket was not made by Cellini. then the gold casket was made by Cellini. hence it was made by a son of Cellini. then the gold casket was made by Cellini. One solution for this problem is that both caskets contained the inscription: "Either both caskets were made by B ellini or at least one was made by a member of the Cellini family. But since the statement on the silver casket is true (by assumption) . which would mean that the gold inscription was false. but since the gold inscription is false. In summary. If the silver inscription is false. " 128 OTHER MYSTERIES . so it was made by a son of Cellini.

Yet both inscriptions are false. Suppose the inscriptions are false. 1 39 5 __ ___ ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ An inscription which works is: "Either both caskets were made by Bellini or at least one was made by a son of Cellini. The latter alternative is false. so both caskets are B ellini's. Therefore the state ments are false. because the statement would then b e true. so they were made by Cellini. which means that neither casket was made by a son of Cellini. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ One solution is that both inscriptions read: "At least one of these caskets was made by a son of Cellini. which means that neither casket was made by a son of Cellini. then both caskets were made by Cellini. Then it really is the case that either both caskets were made by Bellini or that at least one was made by a son of Cellini. hence both caskets must have been made by B ellini. Suppose the inscriptions are true. then at least one of the caskets would have b een made by a son of C ellini. hence Cellini made both caskets. The statements. then both caskets were made by Bellini. " If the state� ments were true. but it is not possible that a son of Cellini makes a true statement. so either both caskets were made by Bellini or at least one was made by a member of the Cellini family. The latter alterna tive is impossible (since a son of Cellini cannot write a true inscription) . therefore are true. BELLINI OR CELLINI: SOLUTIONS 129 . S o both caskets were made b y members o f the Bellini family. 1 38 . " W e wi ll prove that if the inscriptions are true. Then both alterna tives of the disjunction are false-in particular the second alternative (that at least one was made by a son of Cellini) is false.No member of the Cellini family could have made either of the caskets. and if the inscriptions are false.

so Q is true. Then the inscription on the silver casket is true. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Casket A must be paired with casket D. The inscription on the gold casket says that P is e quivalent to Q. Suppose A were paired with C. the inscription on the silver casket must be false. hence it was made by a member of the Cellini family. then P really is equivalent to Q. Then the inscription on C is false. Suppose the inscrip tion on A is true. and also P is not equivalent to Q. This means that one of the two inscriptions is true and the other one is false. We see that in either case. P must be true. Also. since the inscription on the gold casket is true. Suppose the inscription on the gold casket is false. hence it was not made by any Cellini. that is. so Q must be false. " Silver: "The gold casket was made by a member of the C ellini family.1 40 5 One solution is the following: Gold: "These caskets were made by Bellini and Cellini if and only if the silver casket was made by a member of the Cellini family. Then (since Q is true) P must be true. the inscription on the silver casket says that the inscription on the gold casket was made by a liar. one of the caskets was made by Bellini and the other by Cellini. Suppose the inscription on the gold casket is true. " We let P be the proposition that the caskets were made by B ellini and Cellini. Hence again P is true. which in effect says that the inscription on the gold casket is false. and Q may be the proposition that the silver casket was made by a member of the Cellini family. Then (since we have shown that one inscription is true and one is false) . 141. This 130 OTHER MYSTERIES . for if it were paired with casket C we would get the following contradiction.

This would mean that A was made by a member of the Bellini family. Therefore A was made by Bellini and D was made by Cellini. therefore the second is. Now let us consider the B-C pair. On the other hand. Now let us consider the A-D pair. hence the first alternative is false. Therefore the inscription on A is true. which means that C was made by a member of the Bellini family. So.means that the inscription on A is false. hence the second alterna tive is false. Thus caskets B and C were both made by Bellini. Suppose the state ment on C is false. hence contains a false statement. Then D was made by a memb er of the Bellini family and hence the inscription on it is true. which is impossible. Hence at least one of the alter natives of the statement is false. This means that the inscription on A is true-again a contradiction. This means that neither casket was made by a son of Bellini or Cellini. Therefore A is not paired with C . so we would get a contradiction. Hence the statement on C is true. Therefore the statement on B is also true (because it says on C that B was made by a memb er of the Bellini family) . Now. This means that neither alternative of the statement is true. BELLINI OR CELLINI: SOLUTIONS 131 . This further implies that the inscription on D is false. if the statement on C is false then C was made by a member of the Bellini family. The first alternative is true ( since the statement on A is true) . Then B was made by a member of the Cellini family. the first alternative of the statement on B cannot be true. This is a contra diction. suppose the inscription on A is false. Suppose the in scription on A is false. This solve s the first half of the problem. Then the inscription on C is true.

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IN QUEST OF THE ABSOLUTE I read.aal A. They put it in the form: "Why is there something instead of nothing?" When you stop to think of it. He asked all the learned rabbis. but none of them could satisfactorily explain why there is something instead of nothing. he turned to theology. he went wandering around for twelve years in India and Tibet. ministers. Then he turned to Eastern philosophy. it is really a good ques tion. what puzzles me is how come there is anything at all?' " This problem has baffled many a philosopher. priests. once upon a time there was a certain philo sopher who decided to make it the main project of his life to find out why there is something instead of nothing. First he read all the books on philosophy. some philosophers have regarded this as the fundamental philo sophical problem. isn't it? Actually. but none of them c ould tell him the real reason why there is something instead of nothing. why is there something instead of nothing? Well. "The true philosopher is the little girl of nine who was looking out of a window and suddenly turned to her mother and said. and other reli gious leaders. bishops. Next. but THE ISLAND OF BAAL 135 . 'But mother. interviewing various gurus. in some philosophical textbook or other.

One of the high priests of the Temple of B aal knows the true answer. all I know is that it is on one of them. I do not know on which island of the cluster the map can be found. _________ On the first island he tried. The First Island." However.none of them knew why there is something instead of nothing. my son. All I know about is the location of a certain uncharted cluster of islands on one of which is a map and a complete set of directions to the island of Baal." "And where is the island of Baal?" asked the philo sopher eagerly. Hence one has to b e very cagey!" This was the most promising news the philosopher had heard in twenty-four years! Well. he met two natives A. all these islands are inhabited exclusively by knights.. 1 42 . and knaves. hoping to find out which one was the island of Maya. I myself do not know why there is some thing instead of nothing.B. The only place on this planet where the answer is known is on the island of Baal. he found his way without difficulty to this cluster and systematically tried one island after another. who always tell the truth. who made the following statements: A: B is a knight and this is the island of Maya. "Ah! " was the reply. and the name of that one is "Maya. I have never known anyone who has actually found his way to B aal. who always lie. B: A is a knave and this is the island of Maya. Is this the island of Maya? 136 WEIRD TALES . "I don't know that either. Then he spent another twelve years in China and Japan interviewing various Taoist hermits and Z en-masters Finally he met one sage who was on his deathbed and who said: "N 0. In fact.

two natives A. Is this the island of Maya? 1 44 . and this is not the island of Maya. B: That is true. and this is the island of Maya. The Fourth Island. and this is the island of Maya. Is this the island of Maya? 1 46 . Is this the island of Maya? 145.. B: That is true.B said: A: B oth of us are knaves. A and B. __ _ _ _ _ _ _ On this island. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ On this island. The S econd Island. THE ISLAND OF BAAL 137 . _ _ _ _ _ _ __ O n this island. and this is the island of Maya. A and B said: A: At least one of us is a knave. The Fifth Island. B: At least one of us is a knave. said: A: B oth of us are knaves. two natives A. and this is the island of Maya. made the following statements: A: We are both knaves..B..143 . __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Two of the natives here. The Third Island.

our philosopher found the island of Maya. The Map to Baal. A. E ach witch doctor was either a knight or a knave. __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ O n this island. The philosopher had to choose one of the three maps. Well. the other two maps each led to an island of demons. He had to see the High Priest of M aya. Which of the maps X. However. They gave him the following bits of advice: A: X is the correct map.Y. D: E ither A is a knave or B is a knight.B: At least one of us is a knight. or this is the island of Maya. D. and if one landed on an island of demons. Is this the island of Maya? · 1 47 0 The Sixth Island. Is this the island of Maya? 148. B.B made the following statements: A: Either B is a knight. and E. . he would be instantly demolished. The priest explained that only one of the maps was the true map to Baal. _ _ _ _ _ _ __ Well. C: A and B are not b oth knaves. B: Y is the correct map. or this is the island of Maya. E: Either I am a knave or C and D are of the same type (both knights or both knaves) . two of the natives A. and this is not the island of Maya. Z were lying on a table. The priest led him into a room in which three maps X. the task of finding the map and directions to Baal was not as easy as he had anticipated. C. Z is the correct one? 138 WEIRD TALES . B: E ither A is a knave.Y. in the room were five witch doctors.

I did this at great personal risk. Instead of merely annihilating me. the penalty would have been un imaginable. and whether a human or a monkey. "I am either a knave or a monkey. He uttered a sacred sentence. the priests would have changed the very laws of the universe in such a way that I could never have been born! Well. In the center of the room a cowled figure was seated on a golden throne . _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The speaker said. Aspirants to the Sacred Knowledge are allowed to visit the Inner Sanctum. incidentally. The First Test. This island is inhabited exclusively by humans and monkeys. provided that they prove them selves worthy by passing three series of tests. and also a knight or a knave. He was either a human or a monkey.B. The high priests are metaphysicians. by stealth: I had to enter the temple disguised as a monkey. 149. I learned all these secrets. as well as every human. The first series took place on three consecutive days in a huge room called the Outer Sanctum. and from this sentence the philosopher had to deduce exactly what he was-whether a knight or a knave. is either a knight or a knave. the island of Baal is the weirdest and most remarkable. The monkeys are as tall as the humans. In the dead center of this island stands the Temple of Baal. one of the most remarkable temples in the entire universe. our philosopher chose the right map and arrived safely on the island of Baal and agree d to try the tests. and in the Inner Sanctum of the temple can be found a priest who is rumored to know the answer to the ultimate mystery of the universe: why there is something instead of nothing. THE ISLAND OF BAAL Of all the islands of knights and knaves. Had I been caught. E very monkey. and speak as fluently. " E xactly what is he? THE ISLAND OF BAAL 139 .

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ __ The speaker said. so he was al· lowed to try the second series. What are A and B? 1 54. We will call the speakers A and B.1 50 flO The S econd Test. In this room there were two cowled figures seated on platinum thrones." What is he? The philosopher passed these three tests. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ B is a knave and a monkey. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ At least one of us is a monkey. The Fourth Test. I am human. B: Both of us are knaves. " E xactly what is he? ·151 e The Third Test. known as the Middle Sanctum. A: The S ixth Test. and the philosopher was then to give a complete description of each speaker. B: At least one of us is a knave. which also took place on three consecutive days and in another great room. B: A is a knight. WEIRD TALES 1 40 .. _________ A: Both of us are monkeys. "I am not both a monkey and a knight. The Fifth Test. 1 52 A: . They uttered sacred sentences. "I am a knave and a monkey. The speaker said. What are A and B? 153.

you will be devoured by a fierce dragon. In the Inner S anctum! _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The philosopher chose the correct door and safely entered the Inner Sanctum. Which door should the philosopher choose? 156 . each of whom is either a knight or a knave. They made the following statements to the philosopher: A: X is a good door. Z . which consisted of only one test. H: If G and I are both knights. S eated on two diamond thrones were the two greatest priests in the entire universe! It is possible that at least one of them knew the answer to the Great Question: "Why is there something instead of nothing?" Of course. e: A and B are both knights.G.B. E: X and Z are both good doors.H. there were eight priests A. D: X and Y are both good doors. If you enter a wrong door.E. so is F. so is A.F. G: If C is a knight.) So we do not know of either whether he is a knight or a knave. but it was a complicated one. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ There are four doors X. At least one of them leads to the Inner Sanctum. B: At least one of the doors Y. 155.Y. each of the two great priests was either a knight or a knave..C. or whether he knows the answer to the THE ISLAND OF BAAL 141 .D.What are A and B? The philosopher passed the second series of tests and took the third series.Z is good. Well.W leading out of the Middle Sanctum. (Whether they were human or monkey is not relevant. F: E ither D or E is a knight.

one of the two priests. therefore the second part of the state ment is false. So if B is a knight. The two priests made the following statements: First Priest / I am a knave. How ever B is a knight by assumption. Second Priest / I am a knight. it follows that this island both is and is not the island of Maya. Then this is the island of Maya and also A is a knave. Did either of the priests really know why there is something instead of nothing? 157" The Answer! ___ ________ And now you are about to find out the true answer to the Great Question of why there is something instead of nothing! Well. hence this is not the island of Maya. Hence A's. Hence the first part of the statement is true. and I don't know why there is something instead of nothing. Since B is a knave. who in fact did know the answer to the Great Question. his 142 WEIRD TALES .. __________________ Suppose B is a knight. it follows that A is also a knave (because A claims that B is a knight)." What drastic conclusion follows from all this? SOLUTIONS 142. Therefore B must be a knave. "Why is there something instead of nothing?" gave the following response: "There is something instead of nothing.statement is false. Since B is a knave. so it is not true that B is a knight and this is the island of Maya. and I don't know why there is something instead of nothing. when asked by the philoso pher.Great Question.

Therefore this is not the island of Maya. but in either case. so (2) must be false. since A is a knave. (1) is true. this is not the island of Maya. this is not the island of Maya. 145 . However. 1 44 . But the first clause of A's statement must be true (they are both knaves so at least one of them is a knave) . Since A' s statement is false. then they are either both knights or both knaves. then it is not true that (1) they are both knaves and (2) this is the island of Maya. hence the second clause must be false. A is certainly a knave. therefore it is not true that A is a knave and this is the island of Maya. If B is a knave. A must be a knave. by his statement. therefore the second part must be false. hence the second clause must be false. B can be either a knight or a knave. then B is also a knave. Therefore this island is not the island of Maya. then. If they were both knights then it would not be the case that at least one of them is a knave . But the first part of the state ment is true (since A is a knave) .statement is false. This means that A's statement is false. but A's statement is false. S o again. this is not the island of Maya. THE ISLAND OF BAAL: SOLUTIONS 143 . Obviously A is a knave (a knight could never make A' s statement) .. hence this is not the island of Maya. Again. since a knight couldn't make that statement. If B is a knight. Since B agrees with A. hence A's statement would be false. Since B agrees with A. which is impossible since A would be a knight. then the first clause of A's statement is true. Therefore they are both knaves.

so the first alternative is false. Suppose the first alternative is true. hence D would b e a knight. then. This is a contra diction. Thus C would b e a knave and D a knight. Then D's statement would b e true. so A would be a knight. This would mean that both clauses of B ' s disjunctive statement would be false. we have seen that either B is a knight or this is the island of Maya. so the correct map must be Y. therefore A is a knight. Since C is a knight. " But A is not a knave. this is the island of Maya. Then B ' s statement is true: "A is a knave. . contrary to D's true statement that either A is a knave or B is a knight. hence C and D are of the same type. so this is the island of Maya. or this is the island of Maya. Therefore E is a knight. hence either B is a knight or this is the island of Maya. Suppose X were the correct map. of course. But he is not a knave. Then A and B would both b e knaves. There fore this is the island of Maya. If E _______ _____ ___________________ _ ___ _ _ _____ _____ _ were a knave. then again this is the island of Maya.1 47 . But also. S o X cannot be the correct map. Suppose C were a knave. This would mean that a knave made a true statement. hence D is also a knight. Then A is a knight and B is a knave. which is contrary to the fact that C and D are of the same type. 1 44 WEIRD TALES . To repeat part of this argument. then A and B are not both knaves. suppose B is a knight. II the second alternative is true. S o we have found the island of Maya-at last! 1 48 . which is impossible. if B is a knight. that is. Therefore C must b e a knight. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ If A were a knave. which would mean that B was a knave. then both clauses of his disjunctive state ment would be false. Hence his statement is true. so either he is a knave or C and D are of the same type. Therefore his statement is true. then it would be true that either E is a knave or C and D are of the same type . Therefore the second alter native is true. hence either X or Y is the correct map.

and we would have a knave making a true statement. He is not a knave. Hence he is human. There fore it is true that he is not b oth a monkey and a knight.1 49 @ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ If the speaker were a knave. hence his state ment would be true. contrary to the fact that he is a knave. Therefore the speaker is a knight. 153. or his statement would b e true. Then A's statement is false. If he were a monkey. 152. Therefore A is a human knave and B is a human knight. This means his statement is true. Thus he is a monkey knight. therefore he is human. 151 . so they are both human. therefore he is a monkey. hence he is a knave and his statement is false. Therefore he is either a knight or a human. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose the speaker were a knave. so A must be a knave. Then it would b e true that he is not both a monkey and a knight. There fore B is a knight. so A is a THE ISLAND OF BAAL: S OLUTIONS 145 . hence his statement would be true. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ B must b e a knave. then he would be both a monkey and a knight.. Hence he is a human knave . S o he is a human knight. hence he is either a knave or a monkey. Hence his statement is true. Therefore not both A and B are knaves.. Clearly the speaker is not a knight. Therefore he is a knight. 1 50 . He is not a knight. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____ B can't be a knave. then he would b e either a knave or a monkey. because a knight could not make that statement.

This is what G said. S o A is a monkey knave. Therefore F ' s state ment is true. Case Two: Z is good. so is A. Also it is true that if 1 46 WEIRD TALES . S o B is a human knave. But B is a knave. H said that if G and H are both knights. E is a knight. which is a contradiction. so it must be false that B is a monkey. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ 155. Then X. Hence. suppose C is a knight. Since A's first statement is false. In this case. In this case.Y are both good. So we must show that if C is a knight. B is not a knave and a monkey. Hence X is a good door and either Y or Z is good. Suppose that H is a knight. Now we will prove that H' s statement is true. Then X. We do this by assuming that C is a knight. and then showing that F is also a knight. Hence A's statement is true. Case One: Y is good. To do this. hence B would have to be a knave and a monkey. Therefore it is true that if C is a knight. so both of them are monkeys. A is also a knave.knight.Z are both good. Then A would be a knight (since B says he is) . A is a monkey knight and B is a monkey knave. Hence. D is a knight. Then A and B are both knights. From A' s second statement it follows that A is a monkey. his statement is true. so F is a knight. �----We will first show that G is a knight. therefore G is a knight. __ __ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose B were a knight. Therefore B is a knave. Well. so is F . 1 54. so is F . Our assumption that C is a knight leads to the conclu sion that F is a knight. by B ' s statement. Hence either D or E must be a knight. it suffices to show that. Then G and H are both knights.

At any rate (and this is crucial for the next problem!) if he does know the answer. Therefore the one who said that is a knave. so he does know the answer. From ( 1) and (2) it follows that A is a knight. he is indeterminate... so is A (because H said it was. the second part of the state ment must be false. Now we know that A is a knight. therefore. S o the philosopher should choose door X. (2) if G and H are both knights. is a knave. Hence his statement is false. and the second priest. and since G and H are both knights. As for the second priest. and we are assuming that H is a knight) . Therefore the first priest is both a knave and knows the answer. so is A. hence the state ment "There is something instead of nothing" must b e false! This means that nothing exists! So. Therefore. The first priest couldn't be a knight. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ We have seen that the first priest knows the answer to the question and is a knave. 1 56 . Therefore if H is a knight. Hence X really is a good door. if he knows the answer. then he is a knave. then (1) G and H are both knights. then how come there was the priest who made the statement? What properly follows. it appears that the answer to the philosopher's lifelong quest is that nothing really exists after all. so H must be a knight. there is one thing wrong. We are given that the one who said "There is something instead of nothing" knew the answer. so is A.G and H are both knights. So if H is a knight. he must b e a knave. is that the island of THE ISLAND OF BAAL: SOLUTIONS 147 . Hence his statement is true. A is a knight. if nothing exists. How ever. which means that it is not true that he is a knave and that he doesn't know the answer to the Great Question. so the first part of the statement is true. he is either a knight who doesn't know the answer or a knave. But he is a knave. This is what H said. 1 5 7 .

and hence the island of Baal wouldn't exist. The curious thing is that up until the last story (prob lem 1 5 7). but that it is logically certain that it cannot exist. no matter how implausible it may have seemed. as I have described it. For if it existed. everything I told you. then (as I have shown)' it would logically follow that nothing exists. It's not merely the case that it doesn 't exist (which was highly probable from the b eginning of the story) . cannot exist. hence the island of Baal cannot exist. This is a contradiction. and my story were true.Baal. . that was the straw that broke the camel's back! 1 48 WEIRD TALES . But when I told you the last story. was logically possibl e.

they reply "Bal" or "Da" -one of which means yes and the other no. The zombies of this island do not behave according to the conventional concept: they are not silent or deathlike they move about and talk in as lively a fashion as do the humans. Hence whenever you ask them a yes-no question.1111 The il il 0 Island of Zombies A. "Does 'Bal' mean yes? " He replied. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ I once met a native of this island and asked him. "Bal. "BAL" AND "DA" On a certain island near Haiti. 158. S o far. an ancient taboo of the island forbids them ever to use non-native words in their speech. doesn't it? But it isn't! The situation is enormously complicated by the fact that although all the natives understand English perfectly. this sounds like another knight-knave situation in a different dress. It's just that the zombies of this island always lie and the humans of this island always tell the truth. half the inhabitants have been bewitched by voodoo magic and turned into zombies." THE ISLAND OF Z OMBIES 1 49 . The trouble is that we do not know which of "Bal" or "Da" means yes and which means no.

and regardless of whether "Bal" means yes or no. 150 WEIRD TALES . How can you find this out in only one question? (Again.(a) Is it possible to infer what "Bal" means? (b) Is it possible to infer whether he is a human or a zombie? 159. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ If you meet a native on this island. The natives all know whether or not there is. and before you start excavating. is it possible in only one question to find out what "Bal" means? (Remember. The King wants his daughter to marry only someone who is very intelligent. The problem is to design a que stion such that regard less of whether the medicine man is a human or a zombie. he will have to answer "Bal. There is a rumor that there is gold on this island. but only in whether the speaker is a zombie. he will answer "Bal" or "Da. You arrive on the island. he will answer "Bal" or "Da". If he answers "Bal" then you may marry the king's daughter. " _ _ _ You are on this same island and wish to marry the King's daughter.") 161" Making the Medicine Man s ay "Bal . you want to know whether there really is gold or not. hence you have to pass a test. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose you are not interested in what "Bal" means. The test is that you may ask the medicine man any one question you like. if he answers "Da" then you may not.) 160." 1628 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Here is a more difficult one.

B. Second Question to C / Is the defendant innocent? C 's Answer / Yes. The three key witnesses were A. B. Some of the natives answer ques tions with "Bal" and "Da. On a neighboring island of humans and zombies "Bal" and "Da" are again the native words for yes and no. given any family o n this island. can you find out? Remember." but others have broken away from the taboo and answer with the E nglish words "Yes" and "No . In particular. Inspector Craig did the questioning. that Inspector Craig had to be called over from London. ENTER INS PE CTOR CRAIG 163" A Trial. he will answer "Bal" or "Da. " For some odd reason. in one question to any one of the natives. but not necessarily in that order. Is the defendant innocent or guilty? THE ISLAND OF ZOMBIES 151 . Question (to B) / What does "Bal" mean? B 's Answer / "Bal" means yes." and from his answer you must know whether there is gold.How. regardless of what "Bal" and "Da" really mean. they are either both human or both zombies. given any pair of brothers. The case was so important. Question (to C) / Are A and B brothers? C 's Answer / No. Question (to A) / Is the defendant innocent? A 's Answer / Bal. A native was suspected of high treason. all members are of the same type. and C all natives of the island. The following transcript is from the court records.

and you answer in your native tongue." "Yes. Again the native words for yes and no are "Bal" and "Da" (though not necessarily respectively) ." Inspector Craig met one of the natives and asked him the following question: "When someone asks you whether 'Bal' means yes. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ In the above problem. he was able to deduce whether the speaker was a human." but again he 152 WEIRD TALES . _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Mter the trial." or "No. Inspector Craig did not record whether the answer was "Bal. and was it in E nglish or in his native tongue? 166. the semi-zombies sometimes lie and some times tell the truth. or a semi zombie. do you answer 'Bal'T The native answered.1 64 . All Inspector Craig did record was that from the answer. What answer did the speaker give.. but the magic spells were only partially success ful. can it be determined whether A and B are of the same type? 165 . some were zombies. These semi-zombies have been subj e cted to voo doo magic. do you answer 'Bal'?" Again. Inspector Craig paid a visit to a curious neighboring island: S ome of the natives were human. Inspector Craig asked another native the following question: "When someone asks you whether two plus two e quals four. Which? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Another time on the same island. a zombie. The native s sometimes answer yes-no questions in English and sometimes with "Bal" and "Da. As a result. nor did he record whether it was given in E nglish or in the native tongue. and the others were what is known as semi zombies. S emi-zombies. but Inspector Craig failed to record the answer." "Da. and you answer in your native tongue.

a zombie. S o in this case." then "Bal" means yes. then again "Bal" is the correct answer to the question." THE ISLAND OF Z OMBIES: SOLUTIONS 153 . j ust ask him if "Bal" means yes. so again a human will say "Bal" and a zombie will say "Da. 160. " If "Bal" does not mean yes. therefore "Bal" is the truthful native answer to the ques tion. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ �____ The question of problem 1 5 8 does the j ob. Suppose "Bal" means no. or a semi-zombie. It is not possible to tell what "Bal" means. All natives of this island claim to b e human. Then "Bal" is the truthful answer to the question whether "Bal" means yes.could deduce whether the speaker was a human. Then "No" is the truthful E nglish answer to the question whether "Bal" means yes. " then "Da" means yes (and "Bal" means no) . What answer did he get? S OLUTIONS 1 58 . but we can tell that the speaker must have been human. 1 59 . the speaker is human. if he answers "Da. then "Bal" is the correct answer to the que stion. the speaker was human. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ All you have to ask him is whether he is human. so a human will say "Bal" and a zombie will say "Da. regardless of whether "Bal" means yes or no. If "Bal" does mean yes. S o if he answers "Bal. So. S o again. the speaker is human. Suppose "Bal" means yes. so both a human and a zombie will answer affirmatively.

There are other questions which would also do the job." To simplify the exposition a bit. then "Bal" is the correct answer to H. let H b e the question. Thus a human will answer "Bal" regardless of whether "Bal" means yes or no. We can prove that he must answer "Bal. If "Bal" means yes. then "Bal" is not the correct answer to H. so he will say "Bal" (meaning "Yes. "Are you human?" Remember. he will lie and say that it is the correct answer. he will truthfully tell you that it is. so he will say "Bal" (meaning no) . you are not asking him whether H is true or false. hence he will truthfully tell you it isn't. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Again. Case Two: He is a zombie. but since he is a zombie." which of course is a lie) . So a zombie will say "Bal" regardless of whether "Bal" means yes or no. and since he is human. If "Bal" means yes then "Bal" is not the correct answer to H. it is the correct answer." If " Bal" means no. "If someone asked you whether there is gold on this island. Here are some: (1) Is it the case that either you are human and "Bal" means yes. then "Bal" is the correct answer to H. or that you are a zombie and '. hence he will say " Bal. so he will say "Bal" (meaning no) . there are several ways to do this. 154 WEIRD TALES . If "Bal" means no. One way is to ask the medicine man whether "Bal" is the true answer to the question of whether he is human. hence he will lie and say it is not the correct answer. but whether "Bal" is the correct answer to H. Case One: He is human. One way is to ask.161� __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ There are several ways to do this.'Bal" means no? (2) Is it the case that you are human if and only if "Bal" means yes? 162.

then he win answer "Da. Case Four: He is a zombie and "Bal" means no. Then he wouldn't answer "Bal" to question G. S o his answer to you is "Bal." and if there isn't. so he. Then he would a." so he answers your question with "Bal. Then he would truthfully tell you that he wouldn't say "Bal. and b eing human he would tell you that he wouldn't. being a zombie. wouldn't answer "Bal" to G.would you answer 'Bal'?" As we will show. Case Two: He is a zombie and ''Bal'' means yes. Being human. Suppose there is gold on the island. But then he would lie to you and say that he wouldn't say "Bal. he would truthfully tell you that he would answer "Bal. Suppose there is gold on the island. then he will answer "Bal. Then "Bal" is a false answer to G. Then "Bal" is the false answer to G. But then he would lie to you and tell you that he would answer "Bal" to G." regardless of whether he is human or a zombie and regardless of what "Bal" and "Da" really mean. Then he would actually answer THE ISLAND OF Z OMBIES: SOLUTIONS 155 . So he answers your ques tion with "Da" (meaning "Yes. We let G be the que stion. Suppose there is gold on the island." Case Three: He is human and ''Bal'' means no. Then again "Bal" is the truthful answer to G. if there is gold on the island." so he answers your question with "Da. so a human wouldn't make it. so he would in fact give that answer to G. " Suppose there is no gold on the island. then "Bal" is the truthful answer to G. so he answered "Da" to your question. " so he answers "Bal" to your question. Suppose there is no gold on the island. hence is the answer the human would actually give to G. "Is there gold on this island? Case One: He is human and ''Bal'' means yes. I would answer 'Bal' to G") .n swer "Bal" to the question G. " If there isn't gold on the island. Suppose there is gold on the island.

therefore C can't be a zombie. then A. Then " Bal" really means no. On the other hand. so he is human. hence both human or both zombies. suppose he were. Then he would actually answer "Da" to G. then the defendant really is innoc ent. but he would tell you that he wouldn't. so the defendant is innocent. so he will answer your question with "Bal. Suppose they are both human. And since C says the defendant is innocent. Hence he answers "Da" to your question. 164. Suppose A. hence A in effect an swered yes to whether the defendant is innocent. This is a contradiction. of c ourse. you will get "Da" for an answer. As a matter of fact. In summary. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I shall first prove that C cannot be a zombie."Bal" to G. they may be of the same type even though they are not brothers. and since A is a zombie and answered no to whether the defendant is innocent. they must be of the same type. Another question that would work is this: "Is it the case that you are human if and only if 'Bal' is the true answer to whether there is gold on this island?" 1 6 3. if there is gold on the island. So if C is a zombie then the defen dant is innocent (regardless of whether A.B are both human or both zombies) . does not necessarily mean that they are of different types. Then "Bal" really does mean yes. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Since C is human. then the defendant 156 WEIRD TALES .B are both zombies. Then A and B must be brothers. This. then the defendant is innocent. if there is no gold. then in each of the four cases you will get "Bal" for an answer. for if they were of different types. But he would tell you that he would." Suppose there isn't gold on the island. if C is a zombie then the defendant must be guilty. since C says he is innocent. Well.B are not brothers. he wouldn't answer "Bal" to G.

" "No"-the only one which neither a human nor a zombie could make is "No . Had the speaker answered "Bal.would have to b e guilty. for both a human and a zombie would have answered "Yes" if "Bal" means yes. " More specifically.) Therefore if Craig had gotten any answer but "No. " "Yes. if he answered in his native tongue. " he couldn't have known what the speaker was. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Again. had he answered in English. the speaker must be a semi-zombie. But he did know. and if "Bal" means no. 165. his . and "no" if "Bal" means no. then if "Bal" means yes. " Had the speaker answered in English. " (I leave it to the reader to prove these facts." he could have been either a human." "Da. he would have answered "Bal" (regard less of whether he is a human or a zombie) . a nswer would have to be "Yes". 166. Craig could not have known. THE ISLAND OF Z OMBIES: SOLUTIONS 157 . hence he got the answer "No." and the speaker was a semi-zombie. he would have answered "Da. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Of all the four possible answers-"Bal. The reader should easily b e able to prove this himself. and the only way Craig could know what the speaker was is by getting the answer "Da. a zombie or a semi-zombie. if the speaker were either one.

158 WEIRD TALES . (3) sane vampires. Thus the inhabi tants of Transylvania are of four types: (1) sane humans. My purposes were: (1) to ascertain whether Count Dracula was still alive. At the time I was in Transylvania. I had grave reason to doubt that Count Dracula was ever really destroyed.11 -- Is racula l ive? 0 St ill A. (2) in the event that he was de stroyed. The other half are completely sane and know which pro positions are true and which ones false. whatever a sane vampire says is false. but the humans (at least in Transylvania) always tell the truth and the vampires always lie. The humans and vampires are indistinguishable in their out ward appearance. Whatever a sane human says is true. IN TRANSYLVANIA D espite what Bram Stoker has told us. (4) insane vampires. about half the inhabitants were human and half were vampires. whatever an insane human says is false. I wished to see his actual remains. I ac cordingly decided to go to Transylvania to investigate the truth for myself. I wished to meet him. (3) in the event that he was still alive. (2) insane humans. What enormously complicates the situation is that half the in habitants of Transylvania are totally insane and completely deluded in their beliefs-all true propositions they believe to be false and all false propositions they believe to be true.

" and I knew what he was." What type was he? 169. "I am a vampire. " E xactly what type was he? 168" Another inhabitant said. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I once met a Transylvanian who said. an insane vampire will say it does (because he believes it doesn't. an insane human will say it doesn't (because he really believes it doesn't) . _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I once met a Transylvanian who said. a sane human will say that two plus two equals four. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ I once met an inhabitant and asked him. "I am an insane human. "1 am human or 1 am sane .. " I am not a sane human. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Another inhabitant said. a sane vampire will also say it doesn't (because he knows it does and then lies) . 167 .and whatever an insane vampire says is true. For example. "Are you an insane vampire?" He answered "Yes" or "No. " Can it b e inferred whether he i s human o r a vampire? Can it be inferred whether he is sane? IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE? 159 . " Is he of the same type as the last inhabitant? 170. and then lie s about what he b elieves) . What was he? 1 7 1 .

"I b elieve X. Suppose a Transylvanian says.. suppose a Transylvanian believes that he believes X. there exist two statements X. C an you supply two such statements? 1 7 4 . A and B . it follows that the other one must be true.. "Do you b elieve A is human?" What answer did B give (assuming he answered "Yes" or "No")? 160 WEIRD TALES . " I am insane. Does it follow that X must be true? Suppose he doesn't b elieve that he believes X. does it follow that X must be false? The answer to this problem constitutes an important general principle! 1 7 6 . ________ The converse of a statement "If P then Q" is the statement "If Q then P. Suppose a Transylvanian says. Does it follow that X must be false? 1 7 5 . "1 believe so. " Now.1 7 2 . (2) If a Transylvanian makes either one of the statements. I asked A. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Given any statement X. An Ingenious Puzzle. does it follow that X must be true? If he is a vampire. "Is B human?" A replied. " Then I asked B . " (a) Can it be inferred whether he is sane? (b) Can it be inferred whether he is a human or a vampire? 173.. " If he is human.. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I once met two Transylvanians. Y which are converses of each other and such that: (1) Neither statement is deducible from the other.

IS C OUNT DRACULA S TILL ALIVE? 179. and he said. Now can you determine whether he is a vampire? Can you deter mine whether he is sane? B. Well. "If I am sane. " Can it b e determined if Dracula is still alive? 180. Suppose you ask a Transylvanian: "Are you reliable?" and he gives you a "Yes" or "No" answer. "If I am human. Let us define a Transylvanian to b e reliable if he is either a sane human or an insane vampire and to be unreliable if he is either an insane human or a sane vampire. then Count Dracula is still alive. instead. I asked one Transylvanian about the matter. unreliable people are those who make false statements {whether out of malice or delusion} . __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ __ Another Transylvanian said. ____ ____ __ __ __ __ __ Suppose. " Can it be determined if Dracula i s still alive? IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE? 161 .. "Do you b elieve that you are reliable?" He gives you a "Yes" or "No" answer. Can YQU deter mine from his answer whether or not he is a vampire? Can you determine whether he is sane? 178.1 77 . W e recall that the first important question I wanted to settle was whether C ount Dracula was still alive . then Count Dracula is still alive. Reliable people are those who make true statements. you asked him.

(2) I believe that Count Dracula is dead. __ ____ __ __ __ __ ______ _ Another one said. Could it be inferred whether Dracula is alive? 1 62 WEIRD TALES . I s there a single statement a Transylvanian could make which would convince you that Dracula is alive and also that the statement is false? 1 8 4. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Is there a single statement a Transylvanian could make which would convince you that Dracula is still alive and which also is such that you could not tell whether the state ment is true or false? 185. then Count Dracula is still alive.181.. Suppose a Transylvanian said. then Count Dracula is still alive. " If I am a sane human. " Could i t then be determined whether Dracula i s still alive? 183. "If I am either a sane human or an insane vampire. ___ __ __ __ ____ ________ Suppose a Transylvanian made the following two state ments: (1) I am sane. " Can it be determined whether Dracula is alive? 1 8 2 .

186 8 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ _ Suppose a Transylvanian made the following two state ments: (1) I am human. (2) If I am human then Count Dracula is still alive. IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE? 163 . I would have saved myself no end of trouble. WHAT QUE S TION S HOULD BE ASKED? 1 87 . IN DRACULA'S CASTLE Had I had my wits about me and realized the answer to the last problem." regardless of which of the four types he is? 1 90 . _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Can you in one question find out from a Transylvanian whether Count Dracula is still alive? D. C ould it be determined whether Dracula is still alive? c. ____ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Can you in one que stion find out from a Transylvanian whether or not he is a vampire? 1888 ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Can you in one que stion find out from a Transylvanian whether or not he is sane? 1898 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ What question could you ask a Transylvanian which will force him to answer "Yes.

that I j ust could not think straight. I also knew that the castle had a host. " "That is quite impossible for the present. but I did not know whether this host was Count Dracula (let alone whether Dracula was even alive!). I could find out the answer. he can never leave without permission of the host. and soon received my first shock. so bewildered by this cross-classification of sane and insane superimposed on lying and truth-telling. I had to spend several months of arduous social-climbing before I found myself of suffi ciently high standing to be invited. and I knew that there was much activity there. Now. And yet-a far more bewildering situation awaited me! I still did not know whether Count Dracula was alive. if you like. and I received an invitation to attend a fete lasting several days and nights at Castle Dracula. Therefore. The day finally came." I said. " he informed me. I was a little nervous being in the company of Transylvanians. Besides. "but I can take a message to him. and invitations were given to only the most elite of Transyl vanian society. it was short and none too reassuring. I felt that if only I could get to Dracula' s Castle. I realized that in my haste I had forgotten to take my toothbrush. " Well.But I was so confused at the time. "I should like to meet the host. Little did I realize at the time that this would only complicate matters-for reasons you will soon discover. So I started to walk out of the door to go back to my hotel. The reply soon came. but was intercepted by an exceedingly strong and brutal-looking Transylvanian who politely but quite firmly told me that once one enters Dracula' s Castle. admission to Dracula's Castle was by invitation only. and some reading material. A short time after I entered the castle. I sent the host a written message asking if I could leave the castle for a short while. "Then. some of whom were vampires. I knew where Dracula' s Castle was all right. It said: " Of course not! " 164 WEIRD TALES . I went with high hopes. a pocket chess set.

I lay down wearily." used "Bal" and "Da" -just like on the island of zombies! So here I was stuck in a situation with so-called " elite Transylvanians. not even caring to see the second evening of festivities. elite subgroup of Transylvanians who instead of using the words "Yes" and "No. Then I received my second shock. I ' m afraid I lost all m y Z en like composure and was thoroughly depressed the rest of the day. Then. It seemed that in my coming to the castle I had jumped from the frying pan into the fire . so in a truly Z en�like manner I decided to enj oy the evening for what it was worth and to spring into action whenever the first opportunity presented itself. All of the people (except myself) b elonged to a small. a t this realization. At about 2 : 0 0 A. hoping to gain more information. I jumped up with a start. unable either to sleep or to think. and on top of all that. either sane or insane. In one question (answerable by "Bal" or "Da") I could find out from anyone in the castle whether or not he is a vampire. and after a hearty meal I mingled with the guests. The ball that evening was the most magnificent I have ever seen or read about." each of whom was either a human or a vampire. suddenly. IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE? 165 . I decided to retire and was shown to my room. I arose about noon the next day. I realized that the new Bal-Da complications were really easily manageable.So. what could I do? Obviously nothing at the moment. Well. despite the infinite danger I was in. I slept soundly. I retired early. I did not know what "Bal" and "Da" meant! Thus the complexities of the former "nonelite" Transylvanians whom I had interrogated out� side the castle was compounded with the complexities of zombie island. I excitedly got out my pencil and note book and at once worked out the following problems: 191. here I was a prisoner in the castle of Count Dracula! Well. Amazingly enough.M.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ In one que stion I could find out if he is sane. virtually alone in what was now a dreary macabre castle. In one question I could find out what "Bal" means. THE RIDDLE OF DRACULA N ow we come to the climax! Next day I found out all the in formation I wanted-Dracula was indeed alive. and was in fact my host. I also found out that Dracula was an insane vampire. If desired. My 166 WEIRD TALES . hence every state ment he made was true. But what good did this knowledge do me now that I was at the mercy of fate and risked being turned into a vampire and losing my soul forever? After a few more days the festivitie s ended.192. I could ask anyone in the castle a que stion which would force him to answer "Bal. To my surprise. So here I was. " 1950 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ In one question I could find out whether Dracula is alive! What are these questions? E . a prisoner of a host I had not yet met. I didn't have long to wait. and all the guests were permitted to leave except for me. who evidently had requested an audience with me. Shortly before midnight I was rudely awakened from a sound sleep and politely but firmly escorted to the private chambers of Count Dracula. in excellent health. 1 94 .

"Are you aware that I always give my victims some \ chance of escape?" "No. It's just that the enormous sadistic pleasure I derive in watching my victim squirm. I did not quite like the tone o f voice in which he said this." This word "infinitesimal" was none too consoling. Dracula turned livid with rage." " Oh. "I ask my victim a riddle. and wriggle under these agonizing mental gymnastics more than compensates for the infini tesimal probability that I will lose him. bracing myself as well as I could. "I would not think of depriving myself of this great pleasure . Any more of that. " continued Dracula. "Do you fully realize the gravity of the situation? I am hardly in the mood for frivolous j e sts." I said. "Your questions to my guests were very clever-oh yes. "Your j oke s are not funny! " he shouted. I am not running much risk. write. " S omehow o r other. If he fails to guess. I set him free. "Oh yes. " "Very well. it somehow savored of the supercilious. "I have never lost a victim yet. " continued Dracula. " "A sane or an insane one?" I innocently inquired. " replied Dracula. "What motivates you to this sporting generosity?" I inquired. and he becomes a vampire forever. I don't have a generous bone in my body. and I won't even give you the usual chance. Dracula said. If he correctly guesses the answer within a quarter of an hour. "what is the riddle?" 196" Dracula looked at m e scrutinizingly for some time . indeed. so you see. "I was not aware of this. "Why. I strike.guide left. After what seemed an eternity of silence. " I honestly replied. my immediate reac tion was primarily curiosity as to why Dracula would will ingly risk losing a victim. "You see. and there I was face to face with Count Dracula himself. " Frightening as all this sounded. or if he guesses falsely. " Generosity?" said Dracula with a disdainful air. I know all IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE? 1 67 .

given any sentence X whose truth you wish to ascer tain. Dracula rose to leave the room. for example. There is one sentence S having the almost magical property that given any information you want to know. the stakes are quite high. " "What is this sentence S? " I asked. Closer and closer he came until he was practically upon me. Very clever indeed. you could have asked. you need merely ask. if you wished to find out whether the speaker is a vampire.about them. 'Is S true if and only if "Bal" means yes?' To have found out whether I was still alive. I was so paralyzed by fear that no thoughts came at all. "You have fifteen minutes. You had to de sign a separate question for each piece of information you wanted. if you get 'Da' for an answer. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The shock on poor Dracula on my having solved the riddle 168 WEIRD TALES . 'Is S true if and only if you are sane?' To have found out what 'Bal' means. mental labor. . indeed! Those were the most painful fif teen minutes of my life. 'Is S equivalent to Xl' If you get 'Bal' for an answer. but not as clever as you might think. Dracula triumphantly returned and started lumbering toward me with dripping fangs. Then suddenly I raised my hand and yelled: "Of course! The sentence S is ." Quite high. all you would have to do is ask anyone in this castle. " What is the sentence S which saved me? Epilogue. you needed merely to ask. . . you would ask. 'Is S true if and only if Dracula is still alive?' etc. I felt certain that Dracula was secretly watching me from some hiding place. So. "that is for you to find out! This is your riddle! " S o saying. with enormous curiosity. When fifteen minutes elap sed. "Ah" replied Dracula. 'Is S true if and only if you are a vampire?' If you wished to find out if he is sane. You'd better think hard. X must be true. you never hit on one simple unifying principle which would have saved you much . X must be false.

" S o I S DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 1 69 . " 1 97 " There are four minor inconsistencies in this story. But I told you that I did know. and his statement would be false. "Is Count Dracula still alive?" I can truthfully and accur" ately answer "Bal. No. this time he is a sane vampire. crumbled into dust. Therefore his state ment is true. within a few minutes. Therefore he must b e a sane human. __ __ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ He must b e an insane vampire. Now when anyone asks me. C an you spot them? S OLUTIONS His statement is either true or false. and we have a contradiction. 1 70 @ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ A sane human would answer "No" to this question. But we know the statement is true. Suppose it is false. If he were an insane vampire then he wouldn't be either human or sane.was so great that he perished on the spot and. The only ones who make true statements are sane humans or insane vampires. and any of the other three type s would answer "Ye s . hence he didn't answer "Yes. Then he is neither human nor sane. hence he must b e an insane vampire. I couldn't have known what type he was. But insane vampires make only true state ments. " Had I gotten a "Yes" answer. 1 68 .

and hence would say he is a vampire. could not say that he is insane. that if he is human.he answered "No." from which follows that he must have been a sane human. A sane human could not say that he is insane. On the other hand. he is sane. because insane humans don't make true statements. then I am sane. Then the speaker must be sane. an insane human would believe. Hence the speaker is human (because sane vampires don't 170 WEIRD TALES . but it does follow that he is insane. Well. Then it is true that if he is sane then he is human (since he is human. being human. Then Y must be true. that is. the pair I had in mind is this: If I am sane. Therefore if he is human. suppose the speaker asserts Y. S uppose the speaker asserts X.. suppose he is human. We must show X true. then I am human. This means that X is true. and. suppose he is sane. all that follows is that he is a vampire. then he is sane. X: __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ I'm sure many such pairs of statements can be found. We will prove that Y must be true. A sane human would not say that he is a vampire and a sane vampire would know that he is a vampire and would then lie and say he is human. and an insane human would believe that he is sane. 173. Conversely. and an insane vampire would believe he was human and would then say he is a vampire. 172 8 __ __ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ This time. 1 71" __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ It cannot be inferred whether he is human or a vampire. period) . Well. Y: If I am human. hence Y is true.

Similarly it can be shown that if he doesn't believe that he believes X. Suppose A asserts that he believes X. Then. X must be true. We leave this to the reader. Suppose A is human. Therefore if he is sane then he is human. then again X must be true. suppose he is insane. Since he b elieves the statement that he believes X. Hence he doesn't really believe X (he only thinks he does!). so he believes that he believes X. X must b e true. because he may be insane. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The answer to both questions is "Yes. then X must be false. whether A is sane o r insane. S o X must b e false. 1 74 . But if he believe s that he believes X. suppose o n the one hand that he i s sane. On the other hand. Therefore he in fact does believe X. Then it of course does not follow that X must be true. 1758 ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Again both answers are "Yes" -this is a corollary of the solution to the preceding problem. Since he doesn't believe X. Then he doesn't b elieve what he asserts. then X must b e true regardless of whether he is sane or insane. Similarly. and he is insane. so statement X is true .make true statements). then the statement that he b elieves X must be false. then the state ment that he believes X must be true . so he doesn't believe that he b elieves X. IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 171 . Since he b elieves the statement that he b elieves X. And since he is sane. as we have seen in the solution to problem is 1 7 4. Then he b elieves what he asserts. suppose A is a vampire. S o he is human (under the assump tion that he is sane) . We have thus shown that if a Transylvanian believes that he b elieves X. then X must b e true ! For. whether A is sane or insane." Suppose a Transyl vanian believes a certain statement X.

B either asserts that he b elieves A is human or asserts that he believes that A is not human. This is again a contradiction. Then from (1). it cannot.1 76 & __ __ __ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ A asserts that he believes that B is human. S uppose A is human. Then from (2) it follows (by the same principle) that A is human. if he is insane then he will answer " No. We have: (1) A says that he believes B is human. If he is sane. we would get the following contradiction.." We leave the proof to the reader. 1 79 0 _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ No. This is a different case. If the latter were the case. so B is a vampire. (2) B says that he b elieves A is not human. Then by (2) it follows (by the same principle) that A is not human. The reader can check this out for himself. " 177. then he will answer " Yes" . Hence B answered "Yes. It could be that he is a sane human and 172 WEIRD TALES . Suppose A is a vampire. Therefore it is a contradiction that A is human. Therefore if B answered "No" we would have a contradiction. but it can be inferred whether he is sane . Then by (1) it follows. by the principle of problem 1 7 5 . __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ____ ___ Nothing whatever can be inferred. that B is human. B is not human (by the same principle) . 1 78 . it cannot be inferred from the answer whether the speaker is human or a vampire. because all Transyl vanians will answer "Yes" to this question.

" The answer is still "No. or it could be that he is an insane vampire and Dracula is dead. (In fact. (Hint: first show that the speaker is not reliable.) 184." He could." then he must be reliable and the so-and-so must be true.Dracula is alive. Similarly. this time it would follow that Dracula is alive. "If I am a knight then so-and-so. " I S DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 1 73 . __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ ____ Yes." We proved in Chapter 8 (see solutions to problems 1 0 9-1 1 2) that if a native of an island of knights and knaves says." then the speaker must be a knight and the so-and-so must be true. "If I am reliable then so-and-so.) 1800 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Again the answer is "No. if he is an insane vampire then Dracula could be alive or dead. " We leave the proof to the reader. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ A sentence which does this is: "I am reliable if and only if Dracula is still alive. 182. b e an insane vampire. if an inhabitant of Transylvania says. in which case Dracula might or might not be alive. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ A statement which would work is: "I am unreliable and Dracula is dead. The proof is really the same-just substitute the word "reliable" for " a knight. Let us use the terminology of problem 1 7 7 and re phrase the native' s statement thus: "If I am reliable then Dracula is alive. for example . " 183.

we now know the speaker is human and that he said that he believes that Dracula is dead. Therefore Count Dracula must be dead. but that he must be sane. and an insane vampire would believe he is sane and then say that he is insane. "I am human. " it follows. rather amusing. then I would answer "Yes. then that something must be the case (regardless of whether he is sane or insane) . not that he is human. Let us now recall the principle e stablished in problem 1 7 5 : when a human says that he believes something. "I am reliable if and only if so-and-so. The proof is really the same-just substitute "reliable" for " a knight. Well." then the so and-so must be true regardless of whether the speaker is reliable or not. 1 86 . " Another. From (1) we can infer that the speaker is human because a sane vampire would know he is sane and hence say he is insane. example is "I believe that if someone asked me whether Dracula is still alive.. " There are several other statements which would also work.) Now that we know that he is sane. " then the so-and-so must be true (but it is not possible to tell whether the . Similarly.In the solution to problem 1 2 2 of Chapter 8 we proved that if an inhabitant of an island of knights and knaves says. if a Transylvanian says. For example: "I b elieve that the statement that Dracula is alive is e quivalent to the statement that I am human. "I am a knight if and only if so-and-so. From his first statement. (An insane human wouldn't know he was human and an insane vampire would think he is human and then would say he was a vampire. speaker is a knight or a knave) . we shall prove that he is 1 74 WEIRD TALES . it would follow that Dracula must be dead. Therefore the speaker is human." 1858 __ __ __ __ __ __ �____ Yes.

But a sane vampire cannot make true statements.human. then his second statement. so we have a contradiction. Therefore he cannot be a vampire. so he makes true statements. 1870 _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Just ask him whether he is sane."If I am human then Dracula is still alive" -would have to be true. he is human. IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 175 . " 188� ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ Just ask him whether he is a human. " For the next few problems I will just tell you what the questions are. It's not that they all believe that they are human (only sane humans and insane vampires b elieve this) but all natives will say that they believe it. Therefore his second statement that if he is human then Dracula is still alive-must be true." and an insane Transylvanian will say "No. he must be human. You should have enough experience by now to be able to prove for yourselves that these questions work 1 89 . Another question which would work is: "Are you reliable?" All Transylvanians would claim to be reliable. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ One question which works is: "Do you believe you are human?" All Transylvanians must answer "Yes" to this question. Therefore Dracula is still alive. Then it is false that he is human. Now we know that he is both sane and human. and since a false statement implies any state ment. A sane Transylvanian (whether he is human or vampire) will say "Yes. Also. Suppose he were a vampire. A human (whether he is sane or not) will answer "Yes" and a vampire will answer "No.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ E ither of the following questions will work: (1) "Is the statement that you are reliable e quivalent to the statement that Dracula is alive? (2) "Do you believe that the statement that you are a human is equivalent to the statement that Dracula is alive?" 1 9 1 . "Do you b elieve you are human?" Whatever word he answers must mean yes.. "Is 'Bal' the correct answer to the question of whether you are sane?" If he answers "Bal" then he is human. ask him. "Is 'Bal' the correct answer to the que stion of whether you are human?" If he answers "Bal" then he is sane.. Ask him. if he answers "Da" then he is a vampire. Alternatively. One question which will work is: "Is 'Bal' the correct answer to the question of whether you are reliable?" (We recall that being reliable means being either a sane human or an insane vampire. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Ask him. if he answers "Da" then he is insane.1 90 . 193. "Are you reliable?" 1 94 . 1 92 ." as can be proved in essentially the same manner as 176 WEIRD TALES .) Another question which works: "Are you reliable if and only if 'Bal' means yes?" Either of these questions will force an answer of "Bal. Ask him.

1 96 . ( 1 ) Do you b elieve that "Bal" is the correct answer t o the question of whether the statement that you are human is equivalent to the statement that Dracula is alive? (2) Is "Bal" the correct answer to the question of whether the statement that you are reliable is equivalent to the statement that Dracula is alive? A much simpler and more elegant solution is provided by the unifying principle. We will define an elite Transylvanian to be of type 2 if he is not of type 1 .problem 1 6 1 of Chapter 1 1 (except that b eing reliable now plays the role played by being human) . he will answer "Da. if you ask one of type 2 whether X is true." one of type 1 will answer "Bal" to this question.." Let us immediately note that if "Bal" does mean yes. 195. and if he IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 177 . Now. This means that given any true statement X (such as 2 plus 2 e quals 4). ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ___ E ither of the following questions will do the job. then we have the reverse (type l =unreliable and type 2 reliable) . which is explained in number 1 9 6 . and people of type 2 are those who are unreliable." then X must be true. You could phrase your question thus: "Is X true if and only if you are of type I?" We will prove that if he answers "Bal. just ask an elite Transylvanian whether X is e quivalent to the statement that he is of type 1 . of course. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Let us define an elite Transylvanian to b e of type 1 if he answers "Bal" to the question: "Does 2 plus 2 e qual 4?" This means. then people of type 1 are those who are reliable. The Unifying Principle. If "Bal" means no. that given any other question whose correct answer is uYes. the unifying principle is this: To find out of any given statement X whether X is true.

Case Two: "Bal " means no. Sub case 2a: The speaker is of type 1 . The question . We could go through a similar round of reasoning to prove 178 WEIRD TALES . then X is true. so X is true. Proof: S is th e sentence: "You are of type 1 " j X is the sentence whose truth you wish to ascertain. Then he is unreliable and make s false statements." is asserting that S is e quivalent to X. you ask is whether S is e quivalent to X. Case One: "Bal " means yes. Suppose you get the answer "Bal. and X is not e quivalent to S. In this case we know two things: (i) type I -reliable. but S is false. "Bal. In this case we know two things: (i) type 1 =unreliable. Subcase 1 b: The speaker is of type 2. (ii) the speaker is asserting that S is not equivalent to X. Subcase 1 a: The speaker is of type 1 . Then he is reliable and makes true statements. (ii) the speaker. hence X must again b e true. Then S really is e quivalent ta X and also S is true (since he is of type 1 ) . Hence X is true. Thus the "magic" sentence S is: "You are of type 1 " (or "Yau answer 'Bal' to the question of whether 2 +2 =4"). then S is not equivalent to X. Since he asserts that S is e quivalent to X. by saying. " We are to prove that X must then be true." then X must be false.answers "Da. hence S really is e qivalent to X since S is true. Hence S is not e quivalent to X (since he asserts it isn't) . Then he is unreliable and makes false statements. We have shown that a "Bal" answer means that X is true. He falsely asserts that S is not e quivalent to X. But S is false (since the speaker is not of type 1). Then he is reliable and makes true statements. Subcase 2b: The speaker is of type 2.

then it follows (by the above proof) that X really is false. " An elite Transylvanian does not use the word "Yes. (1).that a "Da" answer signifies that X is false. However. " (3) When the strong and brutal-looking Transylvanian told me that I could not leave the castle without permission of the host. So he would have answered "Bal" had you asked him: "Are you of type 1 if and only if X is false?" Since he would have answered "Bal" to this. the statement that Y is equivalent to Z is the very opposite of the statement that Y is e quivalent to not Z) . answering "Da" to this question is really the same as answering "Bal" to the question: Are you of type 1 if and only if X is false?" (Because for any two statements Y and Z. (2) On two occasions Dracula said. "Oh yes . " Now. 197" Answer to the Question on Inconsistencies. why should I have believed him? (4) When the host sent me back the message "Of course not! " why should I have believed him? I did not yet know that the host was an insane vampire and makes correct statements. IS DRACULA STILL ALIVE: SOLUTIONS 179 . we can take the follmving shortcut: Suppose he answers "Da.

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200 . This is logic as I see and understand it. __ __ __ __ __ __ _ ________ Thurber's characterization reminds me a bit of my LOGIC AND LIFE 183 . it would be. _ _ _ _ _ _ In The Thirteen Clocks. Tweedledum' s Characterization of Logic. if it was so. nohow. Thurber's Characterization. it might be. 1 99 . but it isn't so. Tweedledum I Contrariwise. That's logic. but as it isn't it ain't...ll�o Lo g ic and L i fe A. and if it were so. __ I love the following characterization of logic given by Tweedledum: Tweedledee (to Alice) I I know what you're thinking about. Thurber gives a characterization of logic which goes something like this: Since it is possible to touch a clock without stopping it. then it is possible to start a clock without touching it.. S OME C HARACTERIZATIONS O F L O GI C 1 98 .

she cut off all the tips. After a tense silence. The waiter brought a dish with two fish. I would have taken the smaller fish!" The other one replied. if you had offered me first choice." and helped himself to the larger fish. The other day my wife and I were at a party. don't you?" 203 . The neighbor said: "Why do you do a thing like that? Why do you keep all the tips for yourself and pass the rest on to me?" The woman replied. put them on her plate and passed the platter to her neighbor. the first one said. __ A friend of mine-an ex-police officer-when he heard I was a logician. S o no wonder m y car rattles! 2 0 1 . " The other one said. One of the men said to the other. didn't you know?" 184 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . "What are you complaining for. My car is some car. I thought for a while. When the silver platter of asparagus came her way. "Please help yourself. " Okay.favorite syllogism: Some cars rattle.. Another Characterization o f Logic. now. you have it.. The hostess offered us some cake. " Oh. "Really. and then I decided to take the larger piece. said: "Let me tell you how I see logic. Here is how I reasoned: I know my wife likes cake and I know she knows that I like cake. one larger than the other. I also know she loves me and wants me to be happy." 202 � The above reminds me of the story of two men who were in a restaurant and ordered fish. therefore she would want me to have the larger piece. This also reminds me of the story of a woman at a banquet. the tips are the best part. Therefore I took the larger piece. one larger than the other. On the platter were just two pieces.

they say exactly the same thing." 207 . My friend observed. the boy is walking on the inside. thinking it was a ten. I also thought it was a ten. The other day a lady came into the store. they are both e quivalent to the statement LOGIC AND LIFE 185 . Several hours later I discovered it was a twenty. On the menu was printed: Extra charge for anything served extra.2048 __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ I once saw this cartoon in a newspaper: A little boy and girl are walking on a sidewalk. and gave her change accordingly. "Now do you understand why I don't walk on the outside like a gentleman? 205& __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ I also like the following characterization of ethics. A b oy once asked his father. Now ethics. what is ethics?" The father replied: "I will explain it to you. my boy. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I once saw the following sign outside a restaurant. "They really could have left out the first and last words. is: ' S hould I tell my partner?' " 206 s ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I once went into a Chinese restaurant with a mathematician friend. "Daddy. She gave me a twenty dollar bill. The boy says. A truck has just passed through the muddy street and splashed the girl hopelessly. my son. GOOD FOOD IS NOT CHEAP CHEAP FOOD IS NOT GOOD Do these two sentences say the same thing or different things? The answer is that logically speaking.

I picture good expensive food. ARE YOU A PHYSICIST OR A MATHEMATICIAN? 208. The common-sense solution is far quicker. But 3 . Of the two. I have poured 3 X 1 0/ 1 3 = 3 0/ 1 3 ounces o f wine into the water. Three ounces of the water are poured into the wine container. S o the wine container now contains 3 9/1 3 ounce s of water. Though these state ments are logically e quivalent. there are then 1 3 ounces of mixture in the wine container.. when I read the . when I read the first sentence.9/1 3 = 3 9/1 3 . so the mixture is 3/13 water and 1 0/ 1 3 wine. 3 0/1 3) of water as the water container con tains wine. S o the water container now contains 3 0/13 ounces of wine. and also 186 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ A well-known problem concerns two beakers. I think of che!1P rotten food. 3 ounces of the mixture are poured back into the water container. B . I greatly prefer the latter.that no food is both good and cheap. and 3 X 3/1 3 ounce s of water was poured back into the water container. one con taining 10 fluid ounces of water and the other 10 fluid ounces of wine. Now. the wine container contained 3 ounces of water.9/1 3 = 3 0/1 3 . The solution by arithmetic is as follows: Mter 3 ounces of water are poured into the wine container. and after stirring. second. before the second p ouring. one by straightforward arithmetic and the other by common sense. I don't think my reac tion is atypical. S o the wine container contains exactly the same amount (viz. I would say that psychologi cally they suggest different things. Is there now more water in the wine container or more wine in the water container? There are two ways of solving this problem. Mter I pour 3 ounce s of the mixture back into the water container.

This solves the problem. w e have 1 0 ounces o f liquid i n each container. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ When I came upon the above problem. the wine concentration in B will always b e higher than that in A. I immediately thought of the following question: We start again with the 1 0 ounces of water in the first beaker. However. then obviously however much water is missing from the water container is replaced by the same volume of wine. What is the smallest number of pourings required to reach a stage at which the percentage of wine in each mixture is the same? The solution I had in mind is that it is impossible to do this in any finite number of steps. but when w e are finished. and regardless of how much liquid is poured back and forth at each step (provided one never empties one beaker into the other) . the wine concentration in B is of course higher than in A. 209. suppose after a LOGIC AND LIFE 187 .suggests something far more general: Since the amount of liquid in each container is now the same. and 1 0 ounces of wine in the second b eaker. Regardless of how much wine is in one beaker and how much water is in the other. and we pour liquid back and forth from one container to the other. A. but there is now no way of knowing what this amount is. We start with the same containers as b efore. the common-sense solution is e qually applicable to the following more general problem (which the arithmetic method could never handle) . This can be shown by a simple mathematical induction argument. without specifying how much we pour or how many pour ings we make. I s there more water in the wine container or more wine in the water container? By the same common-sense argument. the amounts must be e qual. B.sense" solution doesn't tell you what this volume is. We transfer 3 ounces back and forth any finite number of times. whereas the arithmetic solution tells you that it is 3 0/1 3 . Of course this " common. Now. nor is it necessary that the same amount b e poured each time. At the outset.

my reasoning was quite fallacious. The only way to e qualize the mixture is by pouring all of one beaker into the other. 1977). This was pointed out to Martin Gardner by P. As a problem about the actual physical world. Since every transfer is one of these two cases. One is a bar magnet and the other is not magnetized. 178. If there is mag netic attraction. 163-64. At any rate. Is there a simpler way? The given solution was to pick up one of the bars and touch its end to the middle of the other bar. it follows that B must always remain more concentrated than A. Argyle calculated that after 4 7 double inter changes. hence B will still be stronger than A. I never in a million years would have thought of this as a physical rather than a mathematical problem. whereas in fact they are composed of discrete molecules. The Second Scientific American Book of Puzzles (New York: Simon and Schuster. You can tell which one is the magnet by suspending each by a thread tie d around its center and observing which bar tends to point north. as a purely mathematical problem. then you are not. E. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Martin Gardner gives the following problem: 2 You are in a room containing no metal of any sort except for two iron bars. Now. if there isn't. p. 1961). British C olumbia. my reasoning is impeccable. If we pour some of B into A. �artin Gardner. It as sumed that liquids are infinitely divisible. however. the probability would be significant that the con c entrations would be the same . Argyle of Royal O ak. Magnet Testing. pp. then you are holding the magnet. we are pouring from a stronger to a weaker mixture. 2 10 . and Diversions IFor details see Martin Gardner.given stage the B is still more concentrated than A. 1 I wonder if Argyle' s solution i s correct if the number of molecules in the wine container is odd rather than even. If we p our from A to D. then B will still be stronger than A. 188 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . Mathematical Carnival (New York: Vintage Books.

light the stove." To this I reply: " Good. dumps out the water." In this problem. You are in a country cabin in which there is an unlighted stove. b eing e ssentially a logician rather than a physicist. so far. which I believe is midway in sim plicity between the two others: namely. I. a faucet with cold running water. How would you get a pot of hot water? Most people reply. a box of matches. you are in a country cabin in which there is an unlighted stove. 2 1 1. a faucet with cold running water. which has already been solved. Well. suspend just one magnet by a thread tied to its center and see if it points north. the mathematician turns off the stove.This "physicist' s" solution is a perfectly sensible one and is certainly simpler than the expedient of suspending both bars by threads tied around their centers. and then put the pot on until the water gets hot. Now. a box of matches. reducing the case to the second problem) . " We could go a step further and consider the case of a pot of cold water already on a lighted stove. "I would fill the pot with cold water. there is the following delightful test to tell whether you are a mathematician or physicist. and an empty pot. And What About You? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Are you of the mathematician or physicist type? Well. How do we get hot water? The physicist just waits for the water to get hot. thought of the following solution. "1 would light the stove and put the pot of cold water on it. reducing the case to the prec eding prob lem. reducing the case to the first problem (or he might just turn off the stove. How would you get a pot of hot water? Doubtless you will answer. " I reply: "Then you are a physicist! The mathematician would pour out the water. A still more dramatic variation goes as follows: A LOGIC AND LIFE 189 . the next problem separates the cases. mathematicians and physicists are in complete agreement. and a pot filled with cold water.

Now. " Oh. it takes 2 hours for the trains to collide. and one could solve the problem of summing an infinite series of distances (getting shorter and shorter. "I summed the series." His friend said. Therefore the fly was flying for 2 hours. by first connecting the hose to the hydrant and then squirt ing the building. then the fly must have flown 1 5 0 miles. " Good. That' s all there is to it! Well. Two trains 2 0 0 miles apart are moving toward each other. He was consulted by a group who was building a rocket ship to 190 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . the great mathematician Von Neumann was given this problem. of course. a disconnected hose and a house not on fire. each one is going at a speed of 50 miles per hour. How does one put out the fire? Obviously.house is on fire. A fly starting on the front end of one of them flies back and forth between them at a rate of 7 5 miles an hour. It does this until the trains collide and crush the fly to death. The following problem can be solved either by the "hard" way or the " easy" way. of course. " There is also the following joke about Von Neumann. Since the fly was flying at the rate of 75 miles per hour. thought for a few seconds and said. how did you get it?" Von Neumann replied. The " easy" way is as follows: Since the trains are 2 0 0 miles apart and each train is going at 50 miles an hour. We have available a hydrant and a dis connected hose. How do you put out the fire? The mathematician first sets fire to the house. What is the total distance the fly has flown? The fly actually hits each train an infinite number of times before its gets crushed. reducing the problem to the preceding case. 2 1 20 Von Neumann and the Fly Problem. 1 5 0 miles. and converging to a defi nite finite amount) -this is solving it the " hard" way and would have to be done with pencil and paper. suppose you have a hydrant.

" 2 15. S e e my paper of 1 9 5 2 . " The mother. the boys wouldn't pay enough attention to mathematics and physics. " E instein replied. and rebuilt the rocket exactly according to Von Neumann' s plans. " Well. His friends said. such boys are not worth teaching. "Ah yes. and every day he' s been helping me. "Not exactly. I rang his doorbell. who was having trouble with arith metic. Yet when we started it. asked her whether she knew his name. " Oh. When he saw the incomplete struc ture. "Where did you get the plans for this ship?" He was told. "We have our own staff of engineers . In a period of about two months she. it goes something like Ein-stein. He teaches real good. he asked. that is technically known as the blow-up problem-1 treated that in my paper of 1 954. They angrily called Von Neumann back and said: "We followed your instructions to the letter. the group consulted the 1 9 5 2 paper. The minute they launched it. One day her mother asked her if she knew the reason for her im provement. Albert. " He disdainfully replied: "Engineers! Why I have completely sewn up the whole mathematical theory of rocketry. it blew up! Why?" Von Neumann replied. The little girl replied." 2 140 _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ There is an allegedly true story about a little girl living in Princeton. New Jersey. you know the boys would listen to what you have you say. completely scrapped their 1 0 million dollar structure. The little girl replied: "I heard there is a pro fessor in this town who' s good at numbers.send into outer space. " LOGIC AND LIFE 191 . the entire structure blew up. somewhat startled. made a startling improvement. There is another story that Einstein once told a colleague that he did not like teaching at a co-ed college because with all the pretty girls in the room. for some unknown reason. "Oh come on now.

"You know. "Mr. and when told. Well. " 2 18. of course." Rogers said. I would like you to meet President Coolidge.C . wrote: "There is a black sheep in Kansas. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The last story is reminiscent of a story told about Calvin Coolidge. " Coolidge replied. E ach was asked to write a report of his trip. "I see these sheep have just been shorn. D. j The mathemae tician wrote: "There exists-somewhere in the Midwest-a sheep-black on top. When they came to a flock of sheep. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ______ _ When the humorist Will Rogers was about to be intro duced to President Coolidge. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ ___ __ The following joke illustrates perfectly the difference be� tween a physicist and a mathematician. he was told. " And Will Rogers most certainly did! When introduced to the president. "Looks like it from this side. it' s impossible to make Coolidge laugh. one of the friends said. __ __ ____ __ __ __ __ _ __ __ C alvin Coolidge was. and I love stories about Vermonters. A physicist and a mathematician were flying together from the West Coast to a research laboratory in Washinge ton. "I'll make him laugh. The physicist . VERMONTER S 2 17. One story goes that a man 192 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . Coolidge was visiting a farm with some friends. " 2 19. Rogers.2 16 . " c . over Kansas they passed a black sheep." Will Rogers turned to the president and said: "Eh? Didn't get the name. a Vermonter.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ A characteristic of Vermonters (at least as portrayed in humorous stories) is that the Vermonter. " A student LOGIC AND LIFE 193 . On one road was a sign: "To White River Junction. what did you give your horse last year when it had the colic?" Lem replied. ____ __ __ __ ______ __ My favorite Vermonter story is about the tourist traveling in Vermont who came across a fork in the road. returned one week later. This story has been told about many different mathema ticians. when asked a question. " On the other road was a sign: "To White River Junction. "Does it make any difference which road I take?" The Ver monter replied. "This is obvious . "Lem. and it died. "Lem. The man said. "Been rocking like that all your life?" The farmer replied. " The tourist scratched his head in perplexity. " Lem replied. " 22 1 . " S o did mine. A perfect illustration of this principle is the j oke about one Vermont farmer who went to his neighbor's farm and asked the other farmer. and said. went over to him and asked. " D . "Not yet!" 220. A mathematics professor during a lecture made a statement and then said.walked past the house of a Vermont farmer who was sitting on the porch rocking in his chair. gives accurate answers but often fails to include information which may be highly relevant and very impor tant. spied a Vermont native standing at the intersection. " The farmer went home. "Not to me it doesn't. OBVIOUS? 222. I gave my horse bran and molasses. "Bran and molasses.

I shall not use names. " One member of the audience raised his hand and said. "Yes. " The physicist replied.. " The poor student was as bewildered as ever. I'm afraid there is nothing more I can do. " and walked away. said. "But what is the proof?" The professor went into another trance. returned. therefore it follows!" The student replied. "That' s not a question. "That also does it. " -therefore the proof is correct. " The student replied. The student said: "Professor---. 2 2 3 . "Yes. but letters. Could you please explain it again?" The professor went into a trance-like silence for about three minutes. "All right. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ When I was a graduate student at Princeton. The profe ssor said. "I didn't understand your proof of Theorem B . I've given you three proofs. but you still haven't told me what the proof is! " The professor said. and said. " 225. returned to earth. it is obvious ! " -and continued the lecture. and said. and then said. if none of these help. 224. walked out of the room. returned about twenty minutes later. "Yes. "Why is it obvious?" The pro fessor thought for a few moments. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ A story is told about a famous physicist who.raised his hand and asked. after a lecture to a professional group. 194 LOGIC I S A MANY·SPLENDORED THING . and said. I did not understand the proof you gave of Theorem 2 . "Now I will take any ques tions. I'll prove it to you another way! " He went into another trance. there was cir culating the following explanation of the meaning of the word "obvious" when used by different members of the mathematics department. Another story is told about a professor who met a student in the hall shortly after he had given a lecture. "Look.

___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I heard the following story about the mathematician D avid Hilbert. he recalled that when he took off his tie. it means that the class has already known it for the last two weeks. When awakened. and getting into b ed. " Hilbert went up. One story has it that a student one day met a professor in the hall. Professor and Mrs. in which direction was I walking when you stopped me?" 2 2 7. Hilbert was worried. an hour passed and h e didn't come down. I once told this story to a physicist who told me that he had heard that same story about Ampere! As I heard the story. the day might come when you will see it. 2 2 8. Hilbert took David aside and said. went up to the bedroom. After one guest arrived. E . Mrs. says something is obvious.When Professor A. He asked him. "Tell me. and found Hilbert in bed asleep. When Professor F. go up and change your tie. ____ __ ____ __ __ __ __ My favorite of all absent-minded professor stories is one LOGIC AND LIFE 195 . Hilbert were giving a party. it means that it is probably false. "David. it means that if you go home and think about it for the re st of your life. you will realize it is true. Mrs. "Have you had lunch yet?" The professor thought for a moment and said. says something is obvious. it means that if you go home and think about it for a couple of weeks. he automatically went through the motions of taking off the rest of his clothes. says something is obvious. ABSENT-MINDE D PROFE S S OR S 2 26. says something is obvious. When Professor C. putting on his pajamas. When Professor L.

MUS ICIANS 2290 _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ The composer Robert S chumann wrote at the beginning of one of his compositions: "To be played as fast as possible. in twenty-nine days we will move. I have no idea whether or not it is true (though it conceivably could be. you don't take bus A. but whether true or not. you don't take bus A. " F. and got off at what he remembered was the correct stop. here it is. took bus B. you take bus B! " Weiner replied. when Weiner got out of class. and said. So thirty days before the moving date Mrs. went over to her. When you get out of class. "Yes. you take bus B ! " Weiner replied. knowing of her husband's absent-mindedness. The Weiners were to move from one part of Cam bridge to another. I'll take you home. " Well. " The next morning Mrs. come on. He said to himself: " Oh. Daddy. dear. Norbert. he had forgotten his new address. thirty days from now we will move. of course! This is the day we have moved!" So he went back to Harvard S quare. " Oh. Weiner. However. " 196 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . " A few measures later h e wrote: "Faster. He spied a little girl on the street. Weiner said: "Now remember. this went on each day until the morning of the moving day. walked to his house. and found it empty. "Now today is the day. you take bus B ! " Norbert replied. When you get out of class. dear. you don't take bus A. Weiner said. decided to condition him in advance.told about Norbert Weiner. " Well. He wandered around. "Excuse me. Norbert: when you get out of class today. Mrs. and by this time it was getting quite dark. Mrs. but would you by any chance happen to know where the Weiners live?" The little girl replied. since Weiner did have very poor eyesight in his later years) . he of course took bus A. "Yes. dear. "Yes. Weiner said to her husband in the morning before he left for school: "Now Norbert.

Brahms and the Amateur S tring Quartet.230. I think I liked yours the best. "Oh thank you. Herr Wagner! " The next day Wagner returned to the same spot and found the organ-grinder grinding out the overture at the correct tempo. Well. They were very poor musicians. This story is told of the composer Johannes Brahms. the first movement was about as much as poor Brahms could bear! He got up. gave a polite but sickly smile. tipped his hat. we have a surprise for you. and started to leave the room. Behind him was a big sign: "PUPIL OF RICHARD WAGNER. " LOGIC AND LIFE 197 . the players took out their instruments and started to play the quartet. There is the story of four musicians from the Boston Phil harmonic who were out rowing. "Fake it!" 2 3 2 . and said. but such nice people that Brahms enj oyed associating with them. you are playing it a little too fast.. Wagner stopped and said. One evening they cornered Brahms at a party. how was the performance? Was the tempo all right?" Brahms replied: "Your tempos were all good. They decided to surprise Brahms and spent six months assiduously practicing Brahms' latest quartet. _ _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ A story is told that Richard Wagner was walking on a street in Berlin one day and came across an organ-grinder who was grinding out the overture to Tannhauser. Come into the next room please. Herr Wagner! Thank you. who had four friends who were string players. The first violinist ran after him and said: "Johannes." Brahms followed them into the next room.. "As a matter of fact. " The organ-grinder at once recognized Wag ner. " 2 3 1 . and the first violinist said: " Johannes. One of them fell overboard and yelled: "Help! I can't swim!" One of the other musi cians yelled.

"Ask it anything you like. "This man before you. His father is now fishing in Canada. let me ask the question for you." The customer said: "Ha! The machine is no good! It so happens that my father has been dead for several years. where is his mother's husband?" The computer thought for a moment. _____________________ There is the joke of an IBM salesman who tried to sell a computer that "knew everything. but the meat is rotten." 236." The salesman replied: "No. _____________________ When the world's first automated plane took off." The customer said. no." What came back was: "The vodka is good. Then the computer's soothing. In one case they tried the idiom: "The spirit is strong but the flesh is weak." He stepped over to the computer and said. 198 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . The purpose of the experiment is to see how much distortion results. __________________ _ __ Another time they tried the idiom: "Out of sight. and out came a card: "His mother's husband has been dead for several years. "Okay. Many experiments have been conducted in which an English sentence (preferably an idiom) is translated by one com puter into Russian." The salesman said to one customer. out of mind." 235.G. and out came a card which said: "Your father is now fishing in Canada. the pas sengers were a bit worried." What came back was: "Blind idiot. COMPUTERS 233." 234. where is my father?" The machine thought for a minute. you have to ask in more precise language! Here. it will answer you. then a second computer translates the Russian back to English.

. S o he angrily programmed back: "Yes. he didn't know whether "Yes" was in answer to the first ques tion or the second question or the conjunction of the two questions. The Military Computer.reassuring voice came over the loudspeaker: "Ladies and gentlemen. you are guided by infallible computers. and out came a card which said: "Yes. The colonel programmed two questions into the computer: (1) Will the rocket reach the moon? (2) Will the rocket return to earth? The computer thought for a while.. " 237 . you are privileged to be riding the world's first fully automated plane. what?" The computer thought for a while. Sir. The army had just sent a rocket ship to the moon. . All your needs will b e taken care of. and a card came out saying: "Yes. No human erring pilots. . You have nothing to worry about-worry about worry about-worry about." The colonel was furious. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ My favorite computer story is about a military computer. " LOGIC AND LIFE 199 .

and the puppies are your brothers. he is your father. Ctessipus. in describ ing to Crito the amazing dialectical talents of the sophist brothers E uthydemus and Dionysodorus. in this chapter. ergo. I certainly saw him and the mother of the puppies come together. Inspired by the example of these great sophists. that Ctessipus' father is a dog. The argument is as follows: Dion I You say you have a dog? Ctes I Yes. I shall. "I can prove anyshing! " In Plato's dialogue Euthydemus. Dion I And the dog is the father of them? Ctes I Yes." Later in the dialogue S o crates describes how D ionysodorus proves to one of the audience.How to Prove o nything I think a good characterization of a drunken mathematician is one who says. a villain of one. 200 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . Dion I And has he puppies? Ctes I Yes. Dion I Then he is a father and he is yours. and they are very like himself. Socrates. says. prove to you many strange and wondrous things. " S o great is their skill that they can refute any proposition whether true or false. Dion I And is he not yours? Ctes I To be sure he is.

If it is false. Moreover. it will merely show that at least one of them does.. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This proof will not show that Tweedledee and Tweedledum both exist. who knows me extremely well) . hence sentence (1) or sentence (2) is false. Hence at least one of the three sentences really is false. We have a box in which is written the following three sentences: (1) (2) (3) TWEEDLEDUM DOES NOT EXIST TWEEDLEDEE DOE S NOT EXIST AT LEAST ONE SENTENCE IN THIS BOX IS FALSE Consider sentence (3). Hence either Tweedledum or Tweedledee exists. then Tweedledum exists. it will be impossible to tell from the proof which one of them really exists. then it is not the case that at least one of the three sentence s is false. Proof that Either Tweedledum or Tweedledee Exists. If sentence (1) is false. which means that all three sentence s are true. who will prove to you that either he doesn't exist or you don't exist." HOW TO PROVE ANYTHING 201 . I was introduced by the logician Melvin Fitting (a former student of mine. PRO OF S OF VARIOUS AND S UNDRY THINGS 2 3 8 . and this is a contradiction. if sentence (2) is false then Tweedledee exists. I once gave a talk on my logic puzzles to an undergraduate mathematics club. but you won't know which. "I now intro duce Professor Smullyan. which means that sentence (3) is true. Therefore sentence (3) cannot be false. His introduction really captures the spirit of this book almost better than the book itself! He said.A. but it can't be (3) that is false. it must be true.

and they came to one clause stating that if any of the parties participating in the contract is shown not to be in his right mind. These proofs are variants of a method. Therefore sentence (2) is false. derived from J. 2 40 .. Chico says. And What About S anta Claus? __ _ __ There seems to be a lot of skepticism about the existence of S anta Claus. Therefore Tweedle doo exists. Since sentence (2) is not true. in the Marx brothers movie A Night at the Opera. then both sentences would be false. (This might aptly be called an " ontological" j oke. Hence it is not the case that both sentences are false. which is a contradiction. If it were true. Barkley Rosser. I will now give you three proofs which will establish b eyond any reason able possibility of doubt that S anta Claus doe s and must exist.) Well. 202 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . For example. 'You can't fool me-there ain't no S anity Clause!" I also recall in my high school days a j oke going around about Mae West: Why can't Mae West b e in the same tele phone booth with Santa Claus? Answer: B ecause there is no S anta Claus. Proof One: We shall present this proof in the form of a dialogue. the entire agreement is automatically nullified-this clause is known as the sanity clause. Groucho was going through a contract with Chico. despite this modem skepticism. it must be sentence (1) which is true. so at least one of them is true. hence sentence (2) would be false. of proving anything whatsoever.239 (1) (2) � Proof that Tweedledoo Exists _ _ _ _ _ TWEEDLEDOO EXISTS BOTH SENTENCES IN THIS BOX ARE FALSE Let us first look at sentence (2) .

B arkley Rosser. " then he must be a knight and the so-and-so must be true. Proof Two: The above proof is but a literary elaboration of the following proof of J. Second Logician / Of course! First Logician / S o I was not mistaken-and you admitted that if I am not mistaken. then S anta Claus exists. Therefore Santa Claus exists. so the sentence is true. Hence the sentence is true and if the sentence is true then Santa Claus exists. If the sentence is true. hence what the sentence says is the case. Question / Suppose an inhabitant of an island of knights and knaves said. IF THIS SENTENCE IS TRUE THEN SANTA CLAUS EXISTS The idea behind this proof is the same as that of the proof that when an inhabitant of an island of knights and knave s says: "If I am a knight then so-and-so. First Logician / Hence my statement is true . From this it follows that Santa Claus exists. however. then surely Santa Claus exists (because if the sentence is true then it must also be true that if the sentence is true then Santa Claus exists. then neither a knight nor a knave could make such a statement. Since.First Logician / Santa Claus exists. "If I'm a knight then Santa Claus exists. from which follows that Santa Claus exists) . if I am not mis taken" Second Logician / Well of course Santa Claus exists. Santa Claus doe sn't exist. " Would this prove that Santa Claus exists? Answer / It certainly would. HOW TO PROVE ANYTHING 203 . if you are not mistaken.

the underlying fallacy is exactly the same as in the reasoning of the suitor of Portia Nth: some of the sentence s involved are not meaningful (see discussion in Chapter 1 5) . Discussion. it obviously suffice s to prove the (possibly) stronger state ment that there exists an existing unicorn. then there must exist a unicorn.Proof Three: THIS SENTENCE IS FALSE AND SANTA CLAUS DOES NOT EXIST I leave the details to the reader. The next proof we shall consider is based on a totally different principle. Well. Descartes defines God as a b eing which has all properties.) Surely if there exists an existing unicorn. So all I have to do is prove that an existing unicorn exists. 241 " Proof that Unicorns Exist. What is wrong with this proof? This proof is nothing more than the distilled e ssence of Descartes' famous ontological proof of the existence of God. Hence. Discussion. hence should not be assumed to b e either true or false. (By an existing unicorn I of course mean a unicorn which exists. Therefore God exists. (2) An existing unicorn does not exist. an existing unicorn must necessarily be existing. To do this. there are exactly two possibilities: (1) An existing unicorn exists. 204 LOGIC IS A MANY·SPLENDORED THING . Possibility (2) is clearly contradictory: How could an exist ing unicorn not exist? Just as it is true that a blue unicorn is necessarily blue. What is wrong with these proofs? Well. _ _ _ _ _ _ I wish to prove to you that there exists a unicorn. God must also have the property of existence. by definition.

Proof by Coercion. that anything satisfying Descartes' definition of a God must also have the property of existence. So." it is not clear whether I mean that all existing unicorns exist or that there exists an existing unicorn. how could there be an existing unicorn who doe s not exist? But this does not mean that the statement is true in the second sense. all that properly fol lows is that all Gods exist. the point I wish to make is that even if existence is a property. As I see it. that is. " An owl is in the house. if I say. E uler announce d that he had a HOW TO PROVE ANYTHING 205 . I believe there is a far more significant error in the proof. C onsider first my proof (sic) of the existence of a unicorn." what is meant is that owls have large eyes. But if I say. who was present at the occasion. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ There is the famous anecdote about Diderot paying a visit to the Russian Court at the invitation of the Empress. If I meant the first. 242 . and who himself was a believer. They then conspired with the mathematician E uler. He made quite fre e with his views on atheism. I shall not argue here the question of whether existence is or is not a property. but only that there exists an owl who is in this house. the real fallacy lie s in the double mean ing of the word "an. "An owl has large eyes. the proof is still no good. The E mpress herself was highly amused. that there must exist an existing unicorn. " For example. " which in some contexts means " every" and in other contexts means "at least one . or that every owl has large eyes. " I certainly do not mean that all owls are in this house. when I say " an existing unicorn exists. but one of her councillors sug gested that it might be desirable to put a check on these expositions of doctrine.Immanuel Kant claimed Descartes' argument to h e in valid on the grounds that existence is not a property. But this does not mean that there necessarily exists a God. or that all owls have large eyes. Similarly with Descartes' proof. then it is true-of course all existing unicorns exist. that is.

Euler. B. unless you are conceited. . and it was granted. . none. He asked permission to return at once to France. p2 .. if Diderot desired to hear it. therefore there are only finitely many propositions which you believe. pl . Yet you believe each of the pro positions p I . . A human brain is but a finite machine. . MORE MONKEY TRICKS 244 . Anyway. you know that at least one of the proposi tions. . Yet. pn is false. if you are not conceited. here is the proof. p2 . _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ One philosopher was shocked when Bertrand Russell told 206 LOGIC IS A MANY·SPLENDORED THING . . Diderot gladly con·· sented. Therefore. . . . Let us label these propositions pI. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I thought of this proof about thirty years ago and told it to several students and mathematicians. pn. p2 . . p2 . pn. . . advanced toward Diderot and said in a grave voice: "A squared minus B squared equals A minus B times A plus B-therefore God exists. . Reply!" Diderot was embarrassed and disconcerted. while peals of laughter rose on all sides. Well. where n is the number of propositions you believe. So you believe each of the propositions p 1 . Russell and the Pope. 243 " A Proof that You Are E ither Inconsistent or C onceited. What is the fallacy of this argument? In my opinion. . you know that you sometimes make mistakes. . pn.proof of the existence of God which he would give before all the court. but he could not recall the author. hence not everything you believe is true. . This is a straight inconsistency. I really believe that a reasonably modest person has to be inconsistent. Discussion. A few years ago someone told me that he had read it in some philosophical journal. taking advantage of Diderot' s lack of knowledge of mathematics.

" and contrived the fol lowing proof on the spot: (1) Suppose 2 + 2 5. " Can you prove this?" Russell replied. "But. "how does one know when eight o' clock does come?" The answer is very simple.him that a false proposition implies any proposition. "You mean that from the statement that two plus two e quals five it follows that you are the Pope?" Russell replied "Yes:' The philosopher asked. Just keep your eye very carefully on the clock and the very moment it is right it will be eight 0' clock. "what' s the good of it being right twice a day if you can't tell when the time comes?" Well. = = = = Now. He said.. eternal happiness or a ham sandwich? It would appear that eternal happiness is better. nothing is better than eternal happiness. (3) Transposing. Since two e quals one. Which Clock Is Better? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This one is due to Lewis Carroll. HOW TO PROVE ANYTHING 207 . 246 . the clock is right. 245 . "Certainly. Therefore a ham sandwich is better than eternal happiness. Hence I am the Pope. " you continue. "But. (2) Subtracting two from both sides o f the e quation w e get 2 3. we get 3 2. because it is right twice a day. then the Pope and I are one . w e get 2 1. but this is really not so! Mter all. Which is better. Which Is Better? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Which is better. whereas the other clock is right only once in two years." you might ask. and a ham sandwich is certainly b etter than nothing. Then when eight comes around. suppose the clock points to eight o' clock. a clock that loses a minute a day or a clock that doesn't go at all? According to Lewis Carroll the clock that doesn't go at all is better. the Pope and I are two. (4) Subtracting one from both sides.

I say. if p is true." I say. "as you can see.. this card is red. it is part of the folklore of mathe maticians. count the number of its legs.. then pick a second horse at random..2 4 7 . paint it red. Well. q is true. You have now painted all horse s in the universe. calling the tail a leg doesn't mean that it is one. since the horse would b e of the same color! 248 . " Virtually everyone will assent to this. My Favorite Method o f All. pick a horse at random. If it has exactly thirteen legs. Here is what I do: Suppose I wish to prove to some body that I am Dracula. then my assertion has been proven. If it is red. Proof that There Exists a Horse with Thirteen Legs. "The only logic you must know is that given any two propositions p and q. as I take a deck of cards out of my pocket. " 249 . Well. _ _ _ _ _ _ This is the b e st monkey trick I know. how many legs would a dog have? Lincoln' s answer was: "Four. that would be a horse of a different color! But that' s a contradiction. Its sole drawback is that only a magician can present it." I then place the red card face down on the left 208 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . We wish to prove that there exists at least one horse who has exactly thirteen legs. the blue ones have thirteen legs and the red ones don't. then my assertion has been proven. If it is blue. then paint it blue. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This proof is not original. But suppose the second horse is red? Ah. "Very well. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I am reminded of a conundrum posed by Abraham Lincoln: If the tail of a dog was called a leg. paint all the horses in the universe either blue or red according to the following scheme: Before you paint the horse. It is an absolutely unbeatable method of proving anything whatever. then at least one of the two propositions p. If the second horse is blue. if it has either fewer or more than thirteen legs.

everybody drinks? The answer will surprise many of you. HOW TO PROVE ANYTHING 209 . is this: Does there really exist someone such that if he drinks. " q is true. second drinks were happily passed around the house. "And when I pay. The problem. "p is obvi ously false-just turn over the card. The Drinking Principle. "Well now. I continue: "Let p be the proposition that the card you are holding is red. Soon after. A man was at a bar. We shall now do the very opposite: we will consider some principles which at first seem downright crazy. but turn out to be valid after all. everybody paysh! " This concludes the j oke.palm of the "victim" and I have him cover the back with his right hand. S ome time later. S OME LOGI CAL CURIO S ITIE S In the last two sections we considered several invalid argu ments which at first sight appeared to b e valid. and give everyone elsch a drink. everybody drinksh!" S o drinks were happily passed around the house. caush when I drink. now." I continue. " I conclude triumphantly." Perhaps the reason it got its name is that I always preface the study of this principle with the following joke. and give everyone elsch another drink. 250. " Gimme another drink. then you grant that either p or q is true?" He assents. caush when I take another drink. He suddenly slammed down his fist and said. Since p is true. everyone takesch another drink! " S o. the man said. let q be the proposition that I am Dracula. and to his amazement the card is black! "Therefore. the man slammed some money on the counter and said." He does so. " Gimme a drink. so I am Dracula!" c . _ _ _ _ _ _ _ There is a certain principle which plays an important role in modern logic and which some of my graduate students have affectionately dubbed "The Drinking Principle.

of course. any woman. It comes ultimately from the strange principle that a false proposition implies any proposition. if not all women become sterile) . everybody drinks. it really is true that there exists someone such that whenever he (or she) drinks. Since it is false that Jim drinks. and if it is not the case that everybody drinks. then it is true that if Jim drinks then everybody drinks. So there is at least one person namely Jim-such that if he drinks then everybody drinks. everybody drinks. the whole human race will die out.A more dramatic version of this problem emerged in a con versation I had with the philosopher John Bacon: Prove that there is a woman on earth such that if she becomes sterile. then he does. Solution. all women will b ecome sterile (namely. So again there is a person-namely Jim-such that if he drinks. The upshot of the matter is that if everyone drinks. Suppose it is true that everybody drinks. what then? Wen. Then take any person-call him Jim. then it is true that if Jim drinks. however. 210 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . by the same logic it follows that there is at least one woman such that if she becomes sterile. Yes. if aU women become sterile. And. As for the more dramatic version. Suppose. in that case there is at least one person-call him Jim-who doesn't drink. then any nondrinker can serve as the mysterious person. Let us look at it this way: E ither it is true that every body drinks or it isn't. To summarize. the human race will die out. everybody drinks. call a person "mysterious" if he has the strange property that his drinking implies that every b ody drinks. then anyone can serve as the mysterious person. Since every body drinks and Jim drinks. that it is not true that everybody drinks. if all women become sterile. A dual version of The Drinking Principle is this: Prove that there is at least one person such that if anybody drinks. and any woman who doesn't become sterile.

that there is someone such that if anybody at all drinks. then take any person-call him Jim. naturally. H there isn't. Surely that never happened! Logician / You didn't listen to what I said. e. Then it is true that someone drinks and it is true that Jim drinks.As for the "dual" version. Since it is false that someone drinks. I gues s we'd better change the subj ect. Logician / That' s impossible. Shortly after. then he doe s-either there is at least one person who drinks or there isn't. " everyone on earth? Logician / Yes. they wrote me a Christmas card in which they in vented the following imaginary conversation (allegedly over dinner in the cafeteria) . hence it is true that if someone drinks then Jim drinks. Student / I certainly did-what' s more. at just that moment. everyone does. HOW TO PROVE ANYTHING 211 . Student / That sounds crazy! You mean as soon as he drinks. Student / I just don't understand. yes. Student / Then how come I just did? Logician / Didn't you tell me that you never drink? Student / Vh . Student / But that implies that at some time. then take any person who drinks-call him Jim.. Do you mean. then it is true that if someone drinks then Jim drinks. i. they were delighted. every one was drinking at once. if there is someone who drinks. Logician / I know a fellow who is such that whenever he drinks. Epilogue. On the other hand. Logic cannot be refuted. . I have re futed your logic. . __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ When I told The Drinking Principle to my students Linda Wetzel and Joseph Bevando. everyone does? Logician / Of course.

25 1 9 Is This Argument Valid? I have seen many arguments in my life which seem valid but are really invalid. but turns out not to be one-that's the funny part of it! II got it from the philosopher Richard Cartwright. Therefore I am Dracula. by a valid argument is meant one in which the conclusion necessarily follows from the premises. Doesn't that argument sound like just a silly joke? Well it isn't. 212 LOGIC IS A MANY·SPLENDORED THING . but also is afraid of no one but me. I only recently came across an argument which at first seems invalid (indeed. it is valid: Since everyone is afraid of Dracula. Therefore I must b e Dracula! So here is an argument which seems like a joke. Here is the argument: 1 (1) Everyone is afraid of Dracula. it is not necessary that the premises b e true. Incidentally. So Dracula is afraid of Dracula. then Dracula is afraid of Dracula. (2) Dracula is afraid only of me. it seems like a j oke) but turns out to be valid.

FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 213 . this is what the case is about) . The student agreed to do this. Student I If I win the case. then by definition. S o whether I win the case or lose the case. he would pay Protagoras a certain sum. I don't have to pay. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Perhaps one of the earliest known paradoxe s is about the Greek law teacher Protagoras. Well. In either case. then by definition he has to pay me ( after all.From Paradox o to Truth A . If I lose the case. Protagoras I If he loses the case. Some time elapsed and Protagoras sued the student for the sum. then he will have won his first case. PARADOXE S 252. I don't have to pay. then I will not yet have won my first case. who took a poor but talented student and agreed to teach him without a fee on condition that after the student completed his studies and won his first law case. he has to pay me. Here are the arguments they gave in court. and I have not contracted to pay Protagoras until after I have won my first case. the student completed his studies but did not take any law cases. hence he has to pay me. The Protagoras Paradox. If he wins the case.

The Liar Paradox." 253 . then the student owes money to Protagoras. since the student has now won his first case. so Protagoras should then turn around and sue the student a second time. " or "Epimenides Paradox." What prop erly follows is: (1) the speaker is a knave.. _____ -. Now. just as we would have if a sole inhabitant of an island of knights and knaves said that all inhabitants of the island were knaves (which would be tantamount to saying that he is a knave. the original form of the paradox was about a certain Cretan named Epimenides. (2) there is at least one knight on the island. which is impossible) . if Epimenides were the only Cretan." is really the cornerstone of a whole family of paradoxes of the type known as "liar paradoxes . with the above version of the Epimenides paradox. "All people on this island are knaves. 214 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . who said.. w e really d o not get a paradox a t all-no more than we get a paradox from the assertion that an in habitant of an island of knights and knaves makes the state ment. that sounded pretty circular. the court should award the case to Protagoras. This puzzle (like the first puzzle of this book. Similarly. then we would indeed have a paradox. I'm not sure I really know the answer to this dilemma. The best solution I ever got was from a lawyer to whom I posed the problem. " (Boy. He said: "The court should award the case to the student-the student shouldn't have to pay.-___ The so-called "Liar Paradox. concerning whether I was fooled or not) is a good prototype of a whole family of paradoxes. This is no paradox. since he hasn't yet won his first case... This time. Mter the termination of the case. "All Cretans are liars. all that follows is that Epi menides is a liar and that at least one Cretan is truthful.Who was right? Discussion. " I n this form. didn't it?) Well.

and if it is true then it is false. " We have a card on one side of which is written: (1) THE SENTENCE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THIS CARD IS TRUE Then you turn the card over. and on the other side is written: (2) THE SENTENCE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THIS CARD IS FALSE We get a paradox as follows: If the sentence is true. __ The following version of the liar paradox was first pro posed by the English mathematician P. It is sometimes referred to as "Jourdain's Card Para dox. Consider the statement in the following box: I THIS SENTENCE IS FALSE I Is that sentence true or false? If it is false then it is true.A better version of the paradox is that of a person saying. If the first sentence is false then the FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 215 . " Is he lying or isn't he? The following version is the version which we shall refer to as the liar paradox. 254 . Jourdain in 1 9 1 3 . A Double Version of the Liar Paradox. We shall discuss the resolution of this paradox a bit later.. then the second sentence is true (because the first sentence says it is) . "I am now lying. E . B. hence the first sentence is false (because the second sentence says it is) .

interestingly enough. and sentence (2) is clearly false. what is wrong with the reasoning in these paradoxes? Well. (1) Till S SENTENCE CONTAINS FIVE WORDS (2) Till S SENTENCE CONTAINS EIGHT WORDS (3) EXACTLY ONE SENTENCE ON Till S CARD IS TRUE Sentence (1) is clearly true. which means that sentence (3) must be true! Thus sentence (3) is true if and only if i t is false. rather than mathematicians) who rule out as legiti mate any sentence which refers to itself. If sentence (3) is true. and this is impossible. Thus the first sentence is true if and only if it is false. just count the words and you will see the sentence must be true. Discussion. Frankly.second sentence is false hence the first sentence is not false but true. is p erfectly clear as to its meaning-it states that it has six words. hence sentence (3) would have to be false. The problem comes with sentence (3) . There are those (philosophers. "This sentence has six words. if sentence (3) is false. · 255. the sentence. ________ _ Another popular version of the liar paradox is given by the following three sentences written on a card. which as a matter of fact it does not have. But there is no doubt about what the sentence says. then sentence (1) is the only true sentence. then there are two true sentences-namely (3) and (I)-which is contrary to what sentence (3) says. I see this point of view as utter nonsense! In a self-referential sen tence such as. Another Version. On the other hand. consider the following sentence : I THIS 216 SENTENCE IS TRUE I THING LOGIC IS A MANY·SPLENDORED ." the meaning seems as clear and unequivocal as can be. On the other hand. the matter is subtle and somewhat con troversial. " though false. Now. "This sentence has five words. Also.

FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 217 . let X be the sentence: Two plus two equals four. and I must know just what it is that X asserts. In this case. Nevertheless. But I couldn't have known that X was true until I first knew that two plus two equals four. the above sentence does not give rise to any paradox. Before I can know what it means for the sentence to be true. the sentence has n o meaning whatso� ever for the following reasons: Our guiding principle is that to understand what it means for a sentence to be true. no logical contradiction results either from assuming the sentence to be true or from assuming the sentence to b e false. And since I know that two plus two does equal four. I couldn't have even known what it means for X to be true unless I first knew what it means for two plus two to e qual four. If X should be of such a peculiar character that the very meaning of X depends on the meaning of X being true. Such is exactly the case with the sentence in the above box. But what is the meaning of the sentence itself. Therefore the sentence conveys no information whatsoever. I must understand the meaning of every word which occurs in X. we must first understand the meaning of the sentence itself. I can't understand what it means for the sentence to be true (let alone whether it is true or not) until I first understand the meaning of the sentence. Indeed. In short. then we have a genuinely circular deadlock. B efore I can under stand what it means for X to be true. For example. and I know that X means that two plus two e quals four.Now. and I can't under stand the meaning of the sentence until I first understand what it means for the sentence to be true. Sentences having this feature are technically known as sentences which are not well-grounded. and I don't yet know what it means for the sentence to be true. what does the sentence say? Merely that the sentence is true. then I know that X must be true. This illus trates what I mean when I say that the meaning of a sen tence X being true is dependent on the meaning of X itself. I do know the meaning of all the words in X. I must first understand the meaning of the sentence itself.

S o who made it? Now. you can't get out of this one by saying that the sentence on the sign is not well-grounded! It certainly is well-grounded. "This sentence is false" is not well-grounded. not signs) . The same fallacy occurs in the first few proofs of the last chapter. These two craftsmen made not only caskets. we shall assume that Cellini and Bellini were the only sign-makers of their time (their sons made only caskets.The liar paradox (and all its variants) rest on the use of ungrounded sentences. All the earlier Portias used only sentences which were well-grounded. we can now say more as to how the suitor of Portia Nth got into trouble with his reasoning (see Chapter 5 on Portia' s caskets) . You come across the following sign: THIS SIGN WAS MADE BY CELLINI Who made the sign? If Cellini made it. but also signs. the first two sentences are well grounded. 256 . grounded. it states the historical fact that the sign was 218 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . he inscribed a true statement on it. Incidentally. then the sentence on it is false-which is again impossible. As with the caskets. In number 2 5 5 .") In number 2 5 3 the expression. In number 2 5 4 . he inscribed a false statement on it. If Bellini made it. But What About This One? _ _ _ _ _ _ We return to our friends. B ellini and Cellini of the story of Portia's caskets. and whenever Bellini made a sign. whenever C ellini made a sign. Also. neither sentence on either side of the card is well. then he wrote a true sentence on it-which is impossible.. but the third sentence is not. but P ortia Nth made skillful use of ungrounded sentences to bedazzle her suitor. (I am using "ungrounded" as short for "not well-grounded.

made by Cellini. have you yet figured out the name of this book? 257. is that I gave you contra dictory information. A and B . What statement should he make to confound his executioners? 258 . if the statement is false. since he is then shaving someone who shaves himself. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This is another well-known puzzle. If the state ment is true. the sign is false. make the following statements: FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 219 . Hanged or Drowned? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ In this popular puzzle. S o what is the solution? The solution. If you actually came across the above sign. Incidentally. he is to be hanged. So what should the barber do? 259. a man has committed a crime pun ishable by death. If he doesn't. The question is whether the barber shaves himself or not. If he does. then he is again violating his rule. He is to make a statement. contrary to what I told you) . It is given that a barber of a certain small town shaved all the inhabitants of the town who did not shave themselves. then it would mean either that C ellini sometimes wrote true inscriptions on signs ( contrary to what I told you) or that at least one other sign-maker sometimes wrote false statements on signs ( again. he is to be drowned. since he is failing to shave someone who is not shaving himself. of course. but a swindle. and if it wasn't.. So this is not really a paradox. then he is violating the rule. and never shaved any inhabitant who did shave himself. The B arber Paradox. if it was made by Cellini then the sign is true. And What About This? _ _ _ _ __ _ On an island of knights and knaves two inhabitants.

FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH S omeone once defined a paradox as a truth standing on its head. 259 257. It is c ertainly the case that many a paradox contains an idea which with a little modification leads to an im p ortant new discovery." __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ The answer is that it is logically impossible that there exists any such barber. The next three puzzles afford a good illustration of this principle. _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ What you should say is that the author is lying again! The situation I described is quite impossible. you say about B? S OLUTION TO PROBLEMS 257. If A i s a knight then B i s really a knave. he is a knight. Would you say that A is a knight or a knave? What would . which makes A a knight. "I will be hanged. 220 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING · . 258. B: A is a knight. hence A i s not really a knight! If A is a knave.A: B is a knave. Hence A cannot b e either a knight or a knave with out contradiction. B. ___ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ All he has to say is. 258. then B is not really a knave. 259. hence his statement is true. it is really Jour dain's Double C ard Paradox in a slightly different dress (see problem 2 5 4) .

but only unsociable people b elong to Jack's Club. then Jack belongs to the club of unsociable people. McSnuff gave Craig the following account of this community: FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 221 . Then Jack belongs to Jack' s Club. if he isn't. Jack is either sociable or unsociable. It is not necessary that a person be a member of the club named after him. a sociologist named McSnurd. and every inhabitant has a club named after him. / This is really the Barber Paradox in a new dress. and Craig knew him to be a man of impeccable judgment. then he is called sociable. Is There a Spy in the Community? ___ Inspector Craig once visited a second community and spoke to an old friend of his. 26 1 . no two different clubs are named after the same inhabitant. On the other hand. his story simply didn't hold water. E ach club is named after an inhabitant. if he is. So either way we have a contradiction. Why? Solution. " Inspector Craig thought about this for a moment. Craig and McSnuff had gone through Oxford together. then he is called unsociable. which means that Jack belongs to Jack' s Club (which is the club of unsociable people) . so this is not possible. and suddenly realized that McSnurd couldn't have been a very good sociologist. Thus we will call this club "Jack's Club. a sociologist named McSnuff. " Now. if Jack is unsociable.260 � What Is Wrong with This Story? _ _ _ _ Inspector Craig once visited a community and had a talk with one of the inhabitants. Then the club of all unsociable inhabitants is named after someone-say Jack. and either way we have a con tradiction: Suppose Jack is sociable. An inhabitant may belong to more than one club. which makes Jack sociable. Suppose McSnurd' s story was true. Professor McSnurd gave Craig the following sociological account: "The inhabitants of this community have formed vari ous clubs. The interesting thing about this community is that the set of all unsociable inhabitants forms a club.

this story is perfectly consistent. If anyone were known to secretly belong to the club named after him. there is a simpler way of doing the immediate problem-namely to observe that if there were no spies in the community. and realized that. and each in habitant has exactly one club named after him. number 260. There fore John must be a memb er of John' s Club. we have club s. This means that John is openly a member of John' s C lub. Anyone who is not openly a memb er of the club . he would b e called a spy. hence the set of all sus picious characters would be the same as the set of unsoci able people. The club of all suspicious characters is named after someone-call him John. he can be so either secretly or openly. then b eing suspicious would b e n o different than being unsociable. Thus we will call this club "John's Club . Then he can't be suspicious (b ecause every suspicious person is a member of John's Club) . however. Moreover. which would mean that the set of all unsociable 222 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . which is ab surd. Suppose he isn't. III. then John must b e suspicious. Now. Since every member of John' s Club is suspicious. the curious thing about this community i s that the se t of all suspicious characters forms a club . then John is openly a member of John' s Club. that it is possible to deduce whether or not there are any actual spies in the community. " Now. So if John is not a memb er of John' s Club. " Inspector Craig thought about this for a moment. yet he is a memb er. Thus John is not openly a member o f John's Club. if a person is a member of a club. named after him is called suspicious. unlike the last story. and every club is named after someone. something interesting emerges from it-namely. Are there? Solution."Like the other community. this community. so he is secretly a member-in other words John is a spy! We might remark that having solved the preceding problem. either John himself i s a member of John' s Club or he isn't.

hence there must be a spy in the community (but in this proof. Problem of the Universe. " The second proof is non constructive in the sense that although it showed that it couldn't be the case that there are no spies. hence the Registrar sees no reason why his scheme should not be feasible. there would be 3 2 clubs (including the empty set) . and in general. this particular Universe happens to contain infinitely many inhabitants. These two proofs afford a perfect illustration of what mathematicians mean by the terms " constructive proof" and "nonconstructive proof. if there were 6 inhabitants. For trillions of years he has been trying to construct such a scheme. or is he attempting to do something inherently impossible? Solution. He is attempting the impossible. it did not exhibit any actual spy. Now. if this Universe had only finitely many inhabi tants. Therefore the assumption that there are no spies in the community leads to a contradiction. if there were just 5 inhabitants. the first proof is called constructive in that it actually exhibited a spy-namely the person (whom we called "John") after whom the club of suspicious characters is named. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ There is a certain Universe in which every set of inhabitants forms a club. By contrast. The Registrar of this Universe would like to name each club after an inhabitant in such a way that no two clubs are named after the same inhabitant and each inhabi tant has a club named after him.people forms a club. 262 . there would be 6 4 clubs.. Is the failure due to lack of ingenuity on the part of the Registrar. we have no idea who) . the scheme would be impossible (since there would be more clubs than inhabitants-for example. this famous fact FROM PARADOX TO TRUTH 223 . However. But we proved in problem 2 6 0 that the set of all unsociable people cannot form a club . but so far every attempt has failed. there must be 2 n clubs) . if there are n inhabitants.

2 . 2 6 3 . . Problem of the Listed Sets. 3 . and we are given that every set of inhabitants forms a club. We use the word "numbers" to mean the positive whole numbers 1 . The pages are numbered con secutively. . A certain mathematician keeps a book called The Book of Sets. Again. if it were. 224 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . the number of the page on which it was listed couldn't be either ordinary or extraordinary without en tailing a contradiction. _ _ _ _ _ _ Here is the same problem in a different dress. . . n. Sup pose the Registrar could succeed in naming all the clubs after all the inhabitants in such a way that no two different clubs were named after the same inhabitant.was discovered by the mathematician George Cantor. call n an ordinary number if n does not belong to the set listed on page n. On each page is written a description of a set of numbers. Given any number n. The set of ordinary numbers cannot possibly be listed. The problem is to describe a set which is not listed on any page of the book. . let us call an inhabitant unsociable if he is not a member of the club named after him. The collection of all unsociable in habitants of this Universe certainly constitutes a well defined set. and this somebody cannot be either sociable or unsociable without entailing a contradiction) . .. call n an extraordinary number if n b elongs to the set listed on page n. Therefore we have the impossible club of all unsociable inhabitants-impossible for the same reason as that of problem 260 (this club must be named after some body. . Solution. some of the notions involved will pop up again in the next chapter. Any set which is liste d on any page is called a listed set.

A . either X claims that he is a member of C or he claims that he is not a member of C. E 2. the inhabitants of this island have fonned various clubs. GODELIAN ISLANDS The puzzles of this section are adaptions of a famous principle discovered by the mathematical logician Kurt Gadel which we discuss at the end of the chapter." Now. G. Given any inhabitant X and any club C.o del's Iscovery . The set of all e stablished knaves forms a club. some of the knights are called " established knights" (these are knights who in a certain sense have "proved them selves') and certain knaves are called " established knaves.. In addition. E 1 . 264. C . It is possible that an inhabitant may b elong to more than one club. C (The Complementation Condition): Given any club GODEL'S DISCOVERY 225 . The Island G. We are given that the following four conditions. El: E 2: The set of all established knights forms a club. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ A certain island G is inhabited exclusively by knights who always tell the truth and knaves who always lie. hold.

By condition E z. he claims that he is not an e stablished knight. 264b . (ii) prove that there is at least one unestablished knave on the island.C. the set of established knaves forms a club. Hence by condition C. the set of all inhabitants of the island who are not members of C form a club of their o\Vl1.. Therefore (by condition G) there is at least one person on the island who claims to be an e stablished knave (he 226 LOGIC I S A MANY·SPLENDORED THING .) 264ae __ _ ____ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ (After Godel) (i) Prove that there is at least one unestab lished knight on the island. the set E of all people on the island who are not e stablished knights also forms a club. (This club is caned the complement of C and is denoted by C. Then by condition G. then what he says is true. there is at least one person on the island who claims to be a member of the club E -in other words. hence the speaker must be a knight. so he is not an e stablished knight. By condition E x. there is at least one inhabitant of the island who dairr"'l that he is a member of C. the set E of all es tablished knights forms a club. Therefore the speaker is a knight but not an established knight. Since he is a knight. (Of course his claim might be false: he could be a knave. Now. a knave couldn't possibly claim that he is not an e stablished knight (b ecause it is true that a knave is not an e stablished knight) .) G (The Godelian Condition) : Given any club C. (After Tarski) (i) Does the set of all knaves on the island form a club? (ii) Does the set of all knights on the island form a club? Solution to 264a.

conditions E l . Similarly. Actually. hence the knights don't form a club either. may b e somewhat simpler. By contrast with this proof. Remarks. then the set of established knaves would be the same as the set of knaves. (1) Problem 2 64b affords an alternative solution to problem 2 6 4a. though nonconstructive. since the set of established knaves forms a club whereas the set of knaves doe sn't. then the set of knave s also would (by condition C) . which cannot be. then at least one inhabitant would claim to be a knave. and C were not needed for this. which. If every knight were established. our first proof tells us specifically that anyone who claims that he is not an estab lished knight must be an unestablished knight. If the set of knights formed a club. and anyone who claims to be an established knave must be an unestab lished knave. if every knave were established. Thus condition G alone implies that the knaves don't form a club. This person cannot b e a knight (since no knight would claim to be any kind of a knave) hence he is a knave. (2) Our proof that the set of knaves doe s not form a club used only condition G. so he is not an established knave.claims to be a memb er of the club of established knave s) . Solution to 264 b. but this is impossible because the set of e stablished knights forms a club (by condition E 1) but the set of knights doesn't (by problem 2 6 4b) . Therefore the set of knaves does not form a club. Therefore his statement is false. then the set of knights would be the same as the set of established knights. If the set of knaves formed a club. condition G is equivalent GODEL'S DISCOVERY 227 . This means that he is a knave but not an established knave. which neither a knight nor a knave could do. hence there must be at least one une stablished knight. E 2. Thus the assumption that all knights are e stablished leads to a contradiction.

then C is not the set of all knaves. If some knave were outside C. there is another club D such that every member of D has at least one friend in C.the statement that the knaves don't form a club. E ach club is named after an inhabitant and each in habitant has a club named after him. someone claims to be in C. Hence either some knight is in C or some knave is outside C. i. e.) We shall call the island a Godelian island if condition G holds. he would certainly claim to be in C (since he is truthful) . an island inhabited exclusively by knights and knaves. incidentally. So in either case. He found out the following information. he is called sociable. Craig still did not know whether or not he was on a G6delian island until he found out that the island satisfied the following condition. An inhabitant is not necessarily a member of the club named after him. we mean. of course. to 265. If some knight is in C. An inhabitant X is called a friend of an inhabitant Y if X testifies that Y is sociable. there is at least one inhabitant who claims to be a member of the club. (By a knight-knave island.. for every club C. ______ C onsider now an arbitrary knight-knave island with clubs. Craig (who. Inspector Craig once visited a knight-knave island which had clubs. if he is. we can derive condition G as follows: Take any club C. for suppose we are given that the set of knaves doesn't form Ii club. which we will call condition H. if he isn't he is called unsociable. he would also claim to be in C (since he lies) . 228 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . H: For any club C. Godelian Islands i n General. is a highly cultured gentleman whose theoretical interests are as strong as his practical ones) was curious to know whether or not he was on a G6delian island. Since the set of knaves is not a club. and every nonmember of D has at least one friend who is not a member of C .

C. Suppose he does. hence Jim would lie and claim that he is in club C. So Jim is a knave who is not in club C. hence Jack is a knight. there must be both an unestablished knight and an une s tablished knave on the island.From this condition H. Combining the results o f 2 6 4 and 2 6 5 . GODEL'S DISCOVERY 229 . then John really is sociable. it is. Since John is not a member of club D . So whether John belongs to club D or doesn't belong to club D. Yes. Either John b elongs to club D or he doesn't. there is an inhabitant who claims to be a member of club C . Then John has a friend-call him Jim-who is not a memb er of C. E 2. Since John does b elong to D. and H (don't mention G) . Suppose John doesn't belong to club D. Then he has a friend-call him Jack-in club C who testifies that John is sociable. Craig could deduce whether this island was G6delian. So Jack is a knight who belongs to club C. E 2. we see that given any island satisfying conditions E l. Let D be a club given by condition H. and H. This club D is named after someone-say John. and pose problem 2 6 4 . Incidentally. just give him an island with conditions E I. and Jim claims that John is sociable. Remarks. then John is actually unsociable. if you would like to try a really tough problem on one of your friends. C. DOUBLY GODELIAN ISLANDS The puzzles of this section are of more specialized interest and might best be postponed until after section C. This result is really a dis guised form of GodeI' s famous incompleteness theorem. which we will consider again in S ection C of this chapter. It would be interesting to see if he comes up with condition G himself. B. hence Jim is a knave. so Jack will claim he belongs to club C. Is it? Solution. Take any club C.

S o if either of these two sets formed a club. The subj ect of doubly Godelian islands is a pet hobby of mine . C2. Thus (as far as I know) a doubly Godelian island is not necessarily a Godelian island. such that A claims that B is a member of Cl and B claims that A is a member of C2. Then by condition GG there must be inhabitants A.By a "doubly Godelian island" we shall mean a knight knave island with clubs such that the following condition GG is satisfied: GG: Given any two clubs C l. Well. and if the set of knaves forms a club. so does the set of knights (again by conditions C) . they appear to be quite independent. they both would. there are inhabitants A. and C of island G all held. then so does the set of knaves (by condition C). suppose they b oth do.B who make the following claims: A : B is a knave. If the set of knights forms a club. Let us first consider part (b) . As far as I know. _ _ _ _ I once had the good fortune to discover a doubly Godelian island S in which conditions E l. 266" The Doubly Goclelian Island S. condition GG does not imply condition G. The puzzles involved bear the same sort of relation to the Jourdain Double Card Paradox (see problem 2 5 4 of the preceding chapter) as the puzzle of Godelian islands bears to the liar paradox. 230 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . (a) Can it be determined whether there is an unestablished knight on S? What about an une stablished knave? (b) Can it be determined whether the knights of island S foun a club? What about the set of knave s? Solution. B: A is a knight.B . E 2. nor doe s condition G imply condition GG.

Therefore (again by GG) there must be two speakers A. then the two sets are different. but the second is more instructive.B who say: A: B is an e stablished knave. Cz. one of the caskets must be a B ellini. the first is simpler. our having solved part (b) . the double casket problem of Bellini and Cellini. " Method Two: Since the set o f e stablished knights forms a club. We leave it to the reader to verify that at least one of the two speakers A. Similarly with "knaves .B must be an unestablished knight (more speci fically. so does the set of all inhabitants who are not established knaves. The conclusion. B: A is not an e stablished knave. As for part (a) we can now solve it by either of two methods.B who make the fol lowing claims: A: B is an established knight.This is an impossible situation. we have (by condition GG) inhabitants A.) Similarly. B: A is not an e stablished knight. if A is a knight then he is not an established knight. since the established knaves form a club. hence not all the knights are established. as we showed in the solution of problem 2 5 9 in the last chapter. there fore. so doe s the set of all the inhabitants who are not established knights. GODEL'S DISCOVERY 231 . The interesting thing is that although we know that one of A. we have no idea which one. Method One: Since the set of knights does not form a club and the set of e stablished knights does. and if A is a knave then B must be an unestablished knight) .B is an unestablished knight. but there is no way to tell which. is that neither the set of knights nor the set of knaves can form a club. Taking these two club s for C t. (The situation is exactly like that of problem 1 34.

Conditions E 1 . (We recall that condition C is that for any club C. 23 2 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . This then also proves (a) . but we don't know which. Thus it cannot be that the knights form a club and also that the knaves form a club.mes tablished knave. We will first do (b) . either the knights don't form a club or the knaves don't form a club.E 2 both hold for this island. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ I once discovered another doubly Godelian island S I which intrigued me even more. but it is not known whether condition C holds or not. If the knights don't form a club . However.From this it follows that if B is a knave then he is an l. Suppose that the knights formed a club and the knaves formed a club. But we can't tell which. Solution. (This problem is really the same . s o in either case. and if B is a knight then A is an unestab lished knave (again. then there must b e an unestablished knight (since the established knights do form a club) . Then there would b e inhabitants A. as the double casket problem 1 3 5 of Bellini and Cellini. the following can be proved: (a) Prove that either there is an unestablished knight or an unestablished knave on this island. or to prove that there is an unestablished knave. we leave the proof of this to the reader) .) 267" The Island S 1 .B such that A claims B is a knave and B claims A is a knight. It also appears impossible to prove that the knights don't form a club. then there must b e an unestablished knave. either A or B i s a n unestablished knave. the set of people not in C forms a club) . which we know to be impossible (see preceding problem. (b) Prove that it is impossible that both the knights form a club and also the knaves form a club. or to prove that the knave s don't form a club. It appears impossible to prove that there is an unes tablished knight on island 8 1. or problem 2 5 9 of the last chap ter) . if the knaves don't form a club.

So. B: A is an established knight. then there are inhabitants A. S ome Unsolved Problems. If A is a knave. So in this case. so B' s statement is false. Then his statement is true. I feel it might be fun for the reader to try his hand at some original work. we don't know which). _ _ _ _ _ _ I have thought of a few problems concerning Godelian and doubly G6delian islands which I have not tried to solve. 268 . hence B is an established knave.GG imply the other. Can you prove that my conj ecture is correct? (Or maybe disprove it. Therefore either A is an unestablished knight or B is an unestablished knave (but again. and construct an island in which GODEL'S DISCOVERY 233 . so B is not an established knave..) To do this you must construct an island in which G holds but GG does not. This problem again is like one of the double casket problems (number 1 3 6 of Chapter 9). Suppose A is a knight. A is an unestab lished knight. then B's statement is false. so B is a knave. but I think that highly unlikely. neither of the conditions G. B is an unestablished knave. hence A is not an established knight. in which one of the two caskets (we don't know which) was made by either Bellini or Cellini (but again we don't know which) . in this case. 268ae _ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ I have stated that as far as I know.An alternative (and more interesting) method of provo ing that there is either an unestablished knight or an un established knave is this: Since the established knights form a club and the established knaves form a club.B who say: A: B is an established knave. Also A's statement is false.

then specifying which ones are knights and which ones are knaves and which sets of people form clubs and which ones do not. By constructing an island I mean specifying all the inhabitants. in con structing such islands. 234 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . Can you prove (or disprove) my conj ecture that on island S 1 there needn't be an unestablished knight and there needn't be an unestablished knave (though. 269 Is This System Complete? _ _ __ _ _ A certain logician keeps a book called The Book of Sen tences. GODEL'S THE OREM . can you construct an island satisfying E I . The pages of the book are numbered consecutively. knaves. Given any sen tence X. (Which knights and knaves are established has no bearing on this problem. No sentence appears on more than one page. but also which knights and knaves are established.GG holds but G does not.) 268Co __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ _ Assuming all these islands can be constructed (which I am morally certain is the case.) 268b . and clubs. even though I have not verified it) . E 2. and GG in which there are knights but no unestablished ones? Can you construct one in which there are knaves but no unestablished ones? (This time.. you must specify not only the knights. of course. there must be one or the other) ? That is. the number of the page on which it is written is called the page number of X. in each case what is the minimum number of inhabitants the island must have? Can you prove in each case that no smaller number will work? c. and each page has exactly one sentence written on it.

Some of the true sentences are quite self-evident to this logician. . . This book also has all its page s consecutively numb ered. We are given that the following four conditions hold: E l : The set of page numbers of all provable sen tences is a listed set. and he has taken these self-evident truths as axioms of his logic system. given any numbers n. . C: For any listed set A. we will call h an associate of n if the sentence on page h ( of The Book of Sentences) asserts that n is extraordinary. This system also contains certain rules of reasoning which enable him to prove various true sentences from the axioms and to disprove various false ones. Given any numb er n. and every sentence which is disprovable in the system is a false one. . Are all the true sentence s provable in his system? Are all the false sentences disprovable in the system? These are the questions the logician would like to have answered. 3 . 2 . the logician also has a second book called The Book of Sets. . . it may happen that the set listed on page n ( of The Book of Sets) contains n itself as a member. if this happens we will call n an extraordinary number. The logician is quite confident that his system is correct in the sense that every sentence which is provable in the system is indeed a true sentence. . h. the set A of all numb ers not in A is a listed set. . b ut he is uncertain whether his system is complete in the sense that all the true sentences are provable and all the false are disprovable. and each page contains a description of a set of numbers. E2: The set of page numbers of all the disprovable sentences is a listed set. Also. is either true or false. ) Any set of num bers which is described anywhere in this book we will call a listed set. GODEL'S DISCOVERY 235 . Well. (We here use the word "numbers" to mean the positive whole numbers 1 .n.Every sentence of the book. of course.

T o prove condition G." The first thing we must do to solve the present prob lem is to prove the analog of condition G. The sentence X says that n is extraordinary-in other 236 LOGIC I S A MANY·SPLENDORED THING . the e stablished knights. if n lies outside B. let n be the number of a page on which B is listed. . hence the extraordinary numbers play the role of the sociable people. take any listed set A. there is a sentence which is true if and only if its own page number lies in A . then n has an associate h in A. which is this: Condition G: For any listed setA. By condition H. Let B b e a set given by condition H. the page numb ers of the true sentences play the role of the knights. if n lies in B. In our present setup. The se four conditions are sufficient to answer the lo gi cian' s questions: Is every true sentence provable in the system? Is every false sentence disprovable in the system? It also can be determined whether or not the set of page numb ers of all the true sentences is a listed set and whether the set of page numbers of all the false sentences is a listed set. the established knaves. The notion of a set being listed on a page bearing a given number plays the role of a club b eing named after a given inhabitant. We assert that the sentence X on page h is the sentence we seek. The listed sets play the role of the clubs. and the notion of "associate" plays the role of "friend. then n has an associate h outside A . How can this be done? Solution. those of the provable sentences.H: Given any listed set A. there is another listed set B such that every number in B has an associate in A and every number outside B has an associate outside A. and those of the disprovable sentences. the knaves. This is nothing more than the Godelian island puzzles of S ection A in a different dress. those of the false sentences.

The first possibility is out. Thus X is true if and only if its page number lies in A . if the set of page numbers of all the false sentences were a listed set. hence by condition C . hence h lies outside A. Condition G having been proved. We are given that no false sentence is provable in the system. to say that the page number of X b elongs to A is to say that the page number of X doesn't belong to A. S o if X i s true. we get a sentence Y which is true if and only if its page number is the page number of a disprovable sentence-in other words. hence h lies in A . As to the other questions. Thus X is true if and only if X is not provable. Y is true if and only if Y is disprovable. Z would be true if and only if Z is false. If X is true then n really does lie in B. we now take A to be the set of page numb ers of all the sentences which are disprovable. therefore. so is the set A of all numbers which are not page numbers of provable sentences. and this is impossible. Then n does not lie i n B. hence Y must be false but not disprovable in the system. the logician' s questions are now easily answered: We are given that the setA of page numbers of all the provable sentences is a listed set. Applying condition G. (by condi tion G) there is a sentence X which is true if and only if the page number of X belongs to A. then there would b e a sentence Z which is true if and only if its page number i s the page number o f a false sentence-in other words. hence X must b e true but not provable in the system. Now. This means that either X is true and not provable or X is false but provable. ") GODEL'S DISCOVERY 237 . which is to say that X is not provable (since A consists of the page numbers of those sentences which are provable) . This means that Y is either true and disprovable or false and not disprovable.words that n does lie in B (since B is the set listed on page n) . since no disprov able sentence is true. (It would be like the sentence: "This sentence is false. As for obtaining a false sentence which is not dis provable. Suppose X i s false. then its page number h does lie i n A .

there is a well defined set of expressions called sentences and a classi fication of all sentences into true sentences and false sen tences. mathematical truth cannot be completely formalized." is technically called the Godel number of the sentence. no matter how ingeniously constructed. In addition to sentences. Then by condition C . is adequate to prove all mathe matical truths. the point is that it is possible to number all the sentences and to list all the definable sets in an order such that the conditions E 1 . In all these systems. but.systems meeting certain very rea sonable conditions-there must always be sentences which. which we called the "page numb er.) To establish conditions C and H is really a very simple matter. C. and H of our puzzle hold. cannot be proved from the axioms of the system! Thus no formal axiom system. whole) numbers. and precise rules of inference are given enabling one to prove certain sentence s and disprove others. Certain true sentences are taken as axioms of the system. In 1 9 3 1 Kurt Godel came out with the startling dis covery that in a certain sense. E 2 . but to establish conditions E l and E 2 is quite 238 LOGIC I S A MANY-SPLENDORED THING . He showed that for a wide variety of mathematical systems. The above puzzle is really a form of Godel' s famous Incom pletene ss Theorem. the system contains names of vari ous sets of ( positive.Therefore the set of page numbers of all the false sentence s is not a listed set. (The num ber assigned to each sentence. though true. the set of page numb ers of the true sentences is not a listed set either.270" Godel's Theorem. G6del first proved this result for the cele brated system Principia Mathematica of Whitehead and Russell. as I said. . Now. the proof goe s through for many different systems. Any set of num b ers which has a name in the system we might call a nameable or definable set of the system (these are the sets which we call the "listed" sets in the above puzzle) .

the set of Godel numbers of the true sentences is not definable in the system. it turns out that for any definable set A. there must be a sentence (which Godel actually exhibited) which is neither provable nor disprovable in the system. Since n* is an associate of n. E 2.a lengthy affair. one can of course do this. but still not all true sentences. One might ask the following question: Since Godel' s sentence X (which asserts its own unprovability) is known to be true. such a sentence must in fact be true but not provable Gust as a person on island G who asserts that he is not an established knight must. C and H. this sentence (like every other sentence) has a Godel number-call this number n*. but rather that under a certain reasonable assumption about the system. and it was he who showed that for these systems. I might remark that my account of Godel's method departs somewhat from Godel' s original one-primarily in that it employs the notion of truth. ! Anyway. one can prove more true sentences than in the old system. Thus. Godel' s theorem in its original form did not say that there was a sentence which is true but not provable. The sentence X in question might be thought of as asserting its own unprovability. This is sometimes paraphrased: "For systems of sufficient strength. but not an established one) . in fact. Indeed. Well. though elementary in principle. which Godel did not do. hence one can obtain another sentence Xl which is both true but unprovable in the enlarged system. condition H is fulfilled. A strict formalization of the notion of truth was done by the logician Alfred Tarski. but then the resulting en larged system also satisfies conditions E l . they lead to the construction of a sentence which is true but not provable in the system. for each number n. truth of lConcerning condition H. GODEL'S DISCOVERY 239 . there is the sentence which asserts that n is extraordinary. in the enlarged system. why not add it as a further axiom to the system? Well. once these four conditions are established. the set of all numbers n such that n* is in A-this setB is also definable. be a knight.

which means that it can never be proved. which means it must be true. It is. therefore it must be true. I have just proved that the sentence is true. So how come I have just proved it? What is the fallacy in the above reasoning? The fallacy is that the notion of provable is not well defined. then what it says is really the case. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ .the sentences of the system is not definable within the system. One im portant purpose of the field known as "Mathematical Logic" is to make the notion of proof a precise one." 27 1 . Now. The interesting truth is that the above sen tence must b e a true sentence which is not provable in system S . one speaks rather of prova bility within a given system. Now consider the following sentence: THIS SENTENCE IS NOT PROVABLE IN SYSTEM S We now don't have any paradox at all. S o. Last · Words. then it is false that it can never be proved. there has not yet been given a fully rigorous notion of proof in any ab solute sense. Suppose also that the system S is correct in the sense that everything provable in the system is really true.. How ever. hence it can be proved. we have a contradic tion. if it is false. Since the sentence is true. a crude formulation of Godel's 240 LOGIC IS A MANY-SPLENDORED THIN G . Now suppose we have a system -call it system S-in which the notion of provability within the system S is clearly defined. in fact. C onsider the following paradox: I THIS SENTENCE CAN NEVER BE PROVED I The paradox is this: If the sentence is false. but rather an inter e sting truth.

but these systems are what I might call " doubly Godelian. Y such that X asserts that Y is provable and Y asserts that X is disprovable. From this (using conditions E I . Y such that X asserts that Y is provable (by which I mean that X is true if and only if Y is provable) and Yasserts thatX is not provable. but only within the given system. Or we can construct a pair X. Or again. Y such that X asserts that Y is disprovable and Y asserts that X is not disprovable-from which follows that at least one of them (we don't know which) must be false but not disprovable. one last thing. which can be looked at as asserting its own unprovability. E 2 . Oh. one of them (we don't know which) must be true but not provable." by which I mean that given any two definable sets A. not in an absolute sense. The fact is that the various systems for which Godel's result goes through are not only Godelian" in the sense that given any definable set A there is a sentence which is true if and only if its Godel numb er is in A. there are sentences X. (even without using condition C) we can construct a pair X. the name of this book is: "What Is the N arne of This Book?" GODEL'S DISCOVERY 241 . one of them (we don't know which) is either true but not provable. and C) one can con struct a pair X.sentence X. Y such that X is true if and only if the Godel number of Y is in A. I might also say just a little about the " doubly Godelian" condition which I analyzed in Section B. and such that Y is true if and only if the Godel number of X is in B. before I forget: What is the name of this book? Well. or false but not disprovable (but again we don't know which) .B.

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