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Problems from Another Time

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

Discussion of 15th century French manuscript, with translation of its problems, including one with negative solutions
A fish sees a heron looking at him from across a pool, so he quickly swims towards the south. When he reaches the south side of the pool, he has the unwelcome surprise of meeting the heron.
There is a tree with 100 branches. How many nests, eggs and birds are there?
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.
Two cog-wheels, one having 26 cogs, and the other 20 cogs, run together. In how many revolutions of the larger wheel will the smaller gain in 12 revolutions?
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?
A certain merchant increases the value of his estate by 1/3...
Divide 100 loaves of bread among 10 men including a boatman, a foreman, and a doorkeeper, who receives double portions. What is the share of each?
Find the greatest value of y in the equation a4 x2= (x2 + y2)3.
A set of n disjoint, congruent circles packs the surface of a sphere S so that each region of the surface exterior to the circles is bounded by arcs of three of the circles.

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