Question Sam Loyd's Cyclopedia of Puzzles Answer
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PROPOSITION—Cut the board into the fewest pieces which will fit together to make a square.

HERE IS A PRACTICAL problem from the workshop which shows the advantage of ingenuity and mechanical skill. The carpenter had a fine piece of board which, as shown in the sketch, contains eighty-one squares of the size of the smallest. That is, if the smallest square represented 1 inch, the next, would be 16, and the larger 64, making in all 81. He wants to make a perfectly square shutter for his window. 9x9, and, as there is no material to spare, he aims to divide it into the fewest possible number of pieces which will fit together and form a perfect square.

A glance at the board will give you a picturesque idea of the values of gold, silver and copper as formerly advocated in Nebraska, in the ratios of 16 to 1 and 64, with a mixed or amalgamated copper valuation of 81. From a mathematical standpoint you may learn much in an experimental way regarding the relationships of squares as shown between 1, 16, 64 and 81, which is one of the fascinating features pertaining to the mysteries of square numbers.

Out of an unusually large number of competitors to this curious bit of carpentering I find that many succeeded in doing the feat in five pieces; some did it in four pieces, but few discovered the correct answer in three. The accompanying illustration conveys a pretty lesson in square root by showing that three squares containing 1 and 16 and 64 inches, when combined, should form a square of 81 inches with 9 on each side as shown:



Why are cats like unskillful surgeons? Because they mew till late and destroy patience (patients).

Why is a youth trying to raise a moustache like a cow's tail? Because he grows down.

Why is this continent like milk? Because it's ours (it sours).

How may bookkeeping be taught in a lesson of three words? Never lend them.

What trade is like the sun? A tanner's.

When is a man obliged to keep his word? When no one will take it.

Why is an attractive woman like a successful gambler? Because she has such winning ways.

Why are stout men usually sad? Because they are men of sighs (size).

Why are two young ladies kissing each other an emblem of Christianity? Because they are doing unto each other as they would that men should do unto them.

What is the color of the winds and waves in a severe storm? The winds blew (blue), the waves rose.

Why is a baker a most improvident person? Because he is continually selling that which he kneads himself.

Why is a stupid fellow like G sharp? Because he is A flat.

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