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Problems from Another Time

Individual problems from throughout mathematics history, as well as articles that include problem sets for students.

Having been given the lengths, a and b, of two straight lines drawn from the acute angles of a right triangle to the middle of the opposite sides, determine the lengths of those sides.
There is a fish whose body weighs 8oz. Tell me how much the whole fish weighs?
A railway train strikes a snowdrift which creates a constant resistance. How long does it take the snow to stop the train?
One military horse cannot pull a load of 40 dan; neither can 2 ordinary horses, nor can three inferior horses.
A ladder is placed perpendicular to the plane of the horizon, and in coincidence with the plane of an upright wall.
A father wills his estate valued at $40, 000 to his three children. Before the settlement one of the children dies. What should the other two receive?
Two wine merchants enter Paris, one of them with 64 casks of wine, the other with 20.
Of the two water reeds, the one grows 3 feet and the other 1 foot on the first day. The growth of the first becomes every day half of that of the preceding day, while the other grows twice as much as on the day before.
The three sides of a triangular piece of land, taken in order, measure 15, 10, and 13 chains respectively.
The cost per hour of running a certain steamboat is proportional to the cube of its velocity in still water. At what speed should it be run to make a trip up stream against a four-mile current most economically?

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