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Problems from Another Time

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

IOU
I owe a man the following notes: one of $800 due May 16; one of $660 due on July 1; one of $940 due Sept. 29. He wishes to exchange them for two notes of $1200 each and wants one to fall due June 1. When should the other be due?
Given a pendulum as shown. The height of the pendulum is two units and its horizontal width is 2 units. What is the area of the pendulum?
I wish to find three numbers of such nature that the first and the second with 1/2 of the third makes 20...
A certain man had in his trade four weights with which he could weigh integral pounds from one up to 40. How many pounds was each weight?
Given a semicircle, Prove that if O is the circle's center, DO=OE.
The authors recount the 'great tale' of Napier's and Burgi's parallel development of logarithms and urge you to use it in class.
Three people buy wood together. One pays the merchant 5 coins, another 3 coins, and the last 2 coins.
Of a collection of mango fruits, the king took 1/6; the queen 1/5 the remainder, and the three princes took 1/4, 1/3 and 1/2 (of the same remainder); and the youngest child took the remaining 3 mangoes.
Three vertical posts along a straight canal, each rising to the same height above the surface of the water. By looking at the line of vision, determine, to the nearest mile, the radius of the earth.
Discussion of 15th century French manuscript, with translation of its problems, including one with negative solutions

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