A famous nursery happiness states, "As i was going come St.Ives, i met a male with seven wives. Every wife had seven sacks, every sack had seven cats, every cat had seven kitts. Kitts, cats, sacks, wives, how many were going come St. Ives?" Upon gift presented through this conundrum, many readers start furiously including and multiplying numbers in order to calculate the total quantity the objects mentioned. However, the problem is a cheat question. Due to the fact that the man and also his wives, sacks, etc. Were met by the narrator top top the means to St.Ives, they were in reality leaving--not walk to--St.Ives. The number going to St.Ives is therefore "at the very least one" (the narrator), yet might be much more since the difficulty doesn"t mention if the narrator is alone.

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Should a diligent reader however wish to calculation the sum full

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that kitts, cats, sacks, wives, add to the male himself, the price is easily given through the geometric series


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(1)

with

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and also
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. Therefore,


*

(2)

Computing the sum clearly (but group cleverly),

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*
*

(3)
*
*
*

(4)
*
*
*

(5)
*
*
*

(6)
(7)
(8)

A similar question was offered as problem 79 that the Rhind papyrus, dating from 1650 BC. This problem comes to 7 houses, each with 7 cats, each with 7 mice, each v 7 spelt, each through 7 hekat. The total variety of items is then


(9)

(Wells 1986, p.71). In turn, the difficulty of the Rhind papyrus is repeated inFibonacci"s Liber Abaci (1202, 1228).


REFERENCES:

Eisele, C. "The Liber Abaci through the eyes of Charles S.Peirce."Scripta Math. 17, 236-259, 1951.

Gillings, R.J. Mathematicsin the moment of the Pharaohs. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1972.

Wells, D. The Penguin dictionary of Curious and Interesting Numbers. Middlesex, England: Penguin Books, p.71, 1986.


Referenced on lungemine.com|Alpha: St. Ives Problem
CITE THIS AS:

Weisstein, Eric W. "St. Ives Problem."From lungemine.com--A lungemine.com net Resource. Https://lungemine.com/StIvesProblem.html


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