Friday, February 6, 2015



Ten weary, footsore travelers,
All in a woeful plight,
Sought shelter at a wayside inn
One dark and stormy night.

"Nine rooms, no more," the landlord said,
"Have I to offer yea;
To each of eight a single bed,
But the ninth must serve for two.

A din arose. The troubled host
Could only scratch his head,
For of those tired men no two
Would occupy one bed.

The puzzled host was soon at ease—
He was a clever man—
And so to please his guests devised
This most Ingenious plan:

[A] [B] [C] [D] [E] [F] [G] [H] [I]

In room marked A two men were placed,
The third was lodged in B,
The fourth to C was then assigned,
The fifth retired to D.

In E the sixth be tucked away,
In F the seventh man,
The eighth and ninth in E and H,
And then to A he ran.

Wherein the host, as I have said,
Had laid two travelers by;
Then taking one—the tenth and last—
He lodged him safe in I.

Nine single rooms—a room for each—
Were made to serve for ten;
And this it is that puzzles me
And many wiser men.
—Pittsburg Bulletin.
Published in the Cortland Democrat, May 3, 1889.

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