# Two men in a boat

This mindbender is based on a very old puzzle. It first appeared in a book called "Propositions to sharpen up the young", written about the year 1000 at the monastery of Augsburg in Germany, where it is credited to the English scholar and churchman Alcuin (c732-804).

## The puzzle

The Fulchester United general manager and its secretary are both rather portly. So when they are taking two members of the youth team to a football match they face a dilemma. Between the car park and the pitch is a river and to cross the river a small rowing boat is available. However the rowing boat will sink if it is overloaded and unfortunately it can only take the weight of either the general manager or secretary or both of the youth team. So can you work out how to get all four of them across the river without sinking the boat?

## The solution

First the two youth players get into the boat and row across. One of them then brings the boat back to the car park. The general manager then rows over and the other youth team player brings the boat back. Both youth team players then row across again and once more one of them brings the boat back. The club secretary then rows across. The youth player on the pitch side then rows back to pick up his team mate and bring them back across.