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Problems from Another Time

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

Suppose General [George] Washington had 800 men and was supplied with provisions to last 2 months but he needed to feed his army for 7 months.
A farmer sold a team of horses for $440, but did not receive his pay for them until 1 yr, 8 mo after the sale. He had at the same time another offer of $410 for them. Did he gain or lose by the sale and by how much, money being worth 6%/yr?
There is a lion in a well whose depth is 50 palms. He climbs and slips back a certain amount each day. In how many days will he get out of the well?
Show that the curves x2 - y2 = a2 and 2 xy = b2 cross at right angles.
The highest point of the Andes is about 4 miles above sea level.
X, Y and Z hired a pasture for the season for $90.00. Each has a different number of mules and are on the pasture for a different number of days. How much is each to pay?
A horse, halving its speed each day, travels 700 miles in 7 days. How far does it travel each day?
In order to encourage his son in the study of arithmetic, a father agrees to pay him 8 pennies for every problem solved correctly and to charge him 5 pennies for each incorrect solution.
There is a round town 8000 feet in circumference.
A rifle ball is fired through a three-inch plank, the resistance of which causes an unknown constant retardation of its velocity.

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