Thursday, July 16, 2009

Samurai Cut

The samurai boasted, "And then I took out my sword and cut the thick chain that was linked to two posts into two pieces."

The monk replied, "That is not true."

How did the monk know the story was untrue?


  1. I'm taking a blind guess here: maybe the samurai didn't have his sword with him can't cut through metal with a samurai's sword, can you? Or maybe samurais just don't boast :/.
    :O FIRST

  2. i was thinking that a true samurai would not boast...

  3. If you cut a chain, you will sever at least one link. The two pieces of chain attached to the posts, along with the broken link leaves the chain in a minimum of 3 pieces (could be more if a second link was broken in the attack).

  4. The samurai couldn't have cut the chain into two pieces: he would have had to cut one of the links of chain in half and each half of that link would have made up a third and fourth piece.

  5. Because the samurai was lying.

    I figured that was the most Zen-like answer.

  6. The monk himself had cut the chain earlier that day with his open-palm shaolin slice technique.

  7. Do samurais even have swords?

  8. I love some of these answers, but I'm not familiar enough with Samurai to verify them. Instead, I'll stick with my answer that a chain cannot be cut in two. At best, you would get three pieces, possibly up to six (as Bonnie and Charli pointed out).

    The zen-like answer made me laugh!

  9. Does anyone think the 'recent comments' gadget I put in is a bad idea? I don't want to give away the answers...

  10. I like the gadget - it's interesting to see which puzzles are still active and the gadget's easy enough to ignore if you don't want to see an answer.

  11. It's interesting, but I actually hadn't even noticed it! I had to look to find it!

  12. the monk could tell because the samurai said " linked to two posts into two pieces". Something can't be linked in to pieces.

  13. Being a chain it will be made up of multiple pieces, but if we're assuming that the links form one piece while still linked together, if the samurai was very careful he could have split one link carefully with his sword, and loosened it from one other link, but leaving it hanging from one end of the chain. The chain is now hanging in two pieces, with a split link danglig carefully from one end. Therefore the samurai is correct and the monk is simply trying to pull the wool over our eyes.

    As the wise old woman said - never argue with a man carrying a big sword!


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