How Much Math Knowledge Should A 14 Year Old Know List of Riddles

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List of Riddles

The enigma of the sphinx

According to legend, the sphinx perched atop a mountain terrorized travelers, but promised safe passage to anyone who could successfully answer its riddle: “What creature is that which walks on four legs in the morning, two at noon and at three in the evening.?” The rogue royalty Oedipus came up with the answer: “Man, who in childhood crawls on his hands and knees, in adulthood walks upright, and in old age is helped with a staff.” At this, the sphinx threw herself from her attic and died.

The riddle of fleas

According to the Greek biographer Plutarch (ca. AD 46-119), a riddle killed Homer in his vain attempt to unravel it. The riddle read like this: “What we caught/ we threw away…/ what we couldn’t catch/ we kept. The answer: fleas.

The riddle of Samson

As fully explained in Judges chapter 14, Samson challenged his Philistine guests with a riddle: “From the dining room, something to eat; from the strong, something sweet.” The riddle was settled on a bet costing “thirty pieces of linen and thirty sets of linen,” within seven days. The cunning Philistines asked Samson’s Philistine wife for the answer. The explanation of the riddle: “What is sweeter than honey? What is stronger than a lion?”

The Gordian Knot

Riddles also come in the form of a device, like the one made by King Gordius of Phrygia. In honor of Zeus, he tied the pole and yoke of his chariot in an intricate knot. Along with this came a prophecy that whoever unties the knot will rule all of Asia Minor. Centuries of failed attempts came to an end when Alexander the Great, impatient after repeatedly failing at his skill, took his sword and cut the knot.

John Wesley’s Code

In 1909, Reverend Nehemiah Curnock discovered John Wesley’s personal Bible, with marginal notes written in a code that had remained uninterrupted for 175 years. He studied the Bible and then, through a dream, unlocked Wesley’s code. Rev. Curnock deciphered Wesley’s Journal, which was also written in the same mysterious code. The results of the study were published between 1909 and 1915, and in four volumes.

Houdini Code

It was meant to be the ultimate conundrum for discrediting the media. Houdini challenged them to reveal the code and solve it after the time of his death, which came in 1926. Thousands have tried in vain, until February 1928. In a series of sessions, medium Arthur Ford discovering for the first time a cryptogram that read: “Rosabelle. .. answer… say… pray-answer… say… answer… answer… say.” Ford concluded that the mystery word was “believe,” since the words in Houdini’s code represented the first 10 letters of the alphabet.

The Rubik’s cube

Known as the Gordian Knot of our time, it took the world by storm when it debuted in the West in 1980. Annual cube tournaments continue to this day with records made and broken.

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