Best riddles


Five daughters

Mary’s father has 5 daughters – Nana, Nene, Nini, Nono. What is the fifth daughters name?
If you answered Nunu, you are wrong. It’s Mary!
87.88 %
34 votes


The Missing Servant

A king has 100 identical servants, each with a different rank between 1 and 100. At the end of each day, each servant comes into the king's quarters, one-by-one, in a random order, and announces his rank to let the king know that he is done working for the day. For example, servant 14 comes in and says "Servant 14, reporting in." One day, the king's aide comes in and tells the king that one of the servants is missing, though he isn't sure which one. Before the other servants begin reporting in for the night, the king asks for a piece of paper to write on to help him figure out which servant is missing. Unfortunately, all that's available is a very small piece that can only hold one number at a time. The king is free to erase what he writes and write something new as many times as he likes, but he can only have one number written down at a time. The king's memory is bad and he won't be able to remember all the exact numbers as the servants report in, so he must use the paper to help him. How can he use the paper such that once the final servant has reported in, he'll know exactly which servant is missing?
When the first servant comes in, the king should write down his number. For each other servant that reports in, the king should add that servant's number to the current number written on the paper, and then write this new number on the paper. Once the final servant has reported in, the number on the paper should equal (1 + 2 + 3 + ... + 99 + 100) - MissingServantsNumber Since (1 + 2 + 3 + ... + 99 + 100) = 5050, we can rephrase this to say that the number on the paper should equal 5050 - MissingServantsNumber So to figure out the missing servant's number, the king simply needs to subtract the number written on his paper from 5050: MissingServantsNumber = 5050 - NumberWrittenOnThePaper
87.71 %
46 votes


Brothers and sisters

You and a friend are standing in front of two houses. In each house lives a family with two children. "The family on the left has a boy who loves history, but their other child prefers math," your friend tells you. "The family on the right has a 7-year old boy, and they just had a new baby," he explains. "Does either family have a girl?" you ask. "I'm not sure," your friend says. "But pick the family that you think is more likely to have a girl. If they do have a girl, I'll give you $100." Which family should you pick, or does it not matter?
You should pick the house on the left. Specifically, there is a 2/3 chance that the family on the left has a girl, whereas there's only a 1/2 chance that the house on the right has a girl. This is a very counterintuitive riddle. It seems like there should always be a 1/2 chance that a given child is a girl. And in fact there is. The key word there is "given". Because we are not asking about a "given" child for the house on the left. We are asking about what could be either child. Whereas for the house on the right, we are asking about a "given" child...specifically, we're asking about the younger child. There are 3 possibilities for the children in the first house: Younger Older Girl Boy Boy Girl Boy Boy There is no "Girl, Girl" option because we know the house on the left has at least one boy. Since each of these 3 options is equally likely, and 2 of them have one girl, there is a 2/3 chance of there being a girl in the house on the left. For the house on the right, because we already know the older child is a boy, there are only two possibilities: Younger Older Girl Boy Boy Boy And as we can see, there is a 1/2 chance for the house on the right having a girl.
87.71 %
46 votes