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## A Leather Purse!

Situation puzzles (sometimes called lateral thinking puzzles) are ones where you need to ask lots of yes or no questions to figure out what happened in the situation. These are good puzzles for groups where one person knows the puzzle and answers the questions.

 Puzzle ID: #35107 Fun: (3.05) Difficulty: (1.93) Category: Situation Submitted By: OldChinaHand

A beggar found a leather purse that someone had dropped in the marketplace. Opening it, he discovered that it contained 100 pieces of gold. Then he heard a merchant shout, "A reward! A reward to the one who finds my leather purse!"

Being an honest man, the beggar came forward and handed the purse to the merchant saying, "Here is your purse. May I have the reward now?"

"Reward?" scoffed the merchant, greedily counting his gold. "Why the purse I dropped had 200 pieces of gold in it. You've already stolen more than the reward! Go away or I'll tell the police."

"I'm an honest man," said the beggar defiantly. "Let us take this matter to the court."

In court, the judge patiently listened to both sides of the story of a leather bag lost and a leather bag found. He counted the coins; 100 gold coins in total. Then said, "If all was said is true then it's clear that no reward is necessary."

How did the judge rule on this case?

The judge then said, "Merchant, you stated that the purse you lost contained 200 pieces of gold. Well, that's a considerable loss, but the purse this beggar found had only 100 pieces of gold. Therefore, it couldn't be the one you lost." With that, the judge gave the purse with 100 pieces of gold to the beggar, and told the merchant that he did not have to pay a reward.

There might just be a leather bag out there somewhere still with 200 pieces of gold in it, but don't ask the merchant, the beggar, or me.

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 GebbieRose Jan 29, 2007 Clever indeed! boodler Jan 29, 2007 Justice is served! t4mt Jan 29, 2007 Again, Chinahand has amazed me with his teaser skills. cassiemark Jan 30, 2007 Easy breezy Dishhead5 Jan 31, 2007 again, nice one from chinahand stormtrooper Jan 31, 2007 he showed him! vlerma Feb 02, 2007 Can I play the beggar? Good one OCH. More please? lukeschett Feb 05, 2007 Oh. So that's where my leather purse went. I lost that last week. Anyway, awesome teaser. OldChinaHand, you have some of the greatest teasers I have ever seen. SPUTNIK2 Feb 08, 2007 nice one, and nicely written LeafFan4life Feb 28, 2007 is this guy a man? why does he have a purse with him that is disgraceful only women carry purses (no offense to any man who owns or carries a purse im just generally speaking) Jimbo Mar 08, 2007 Any more comments like that Leafan and I'll hit you with my handbag! amn22492 May 23, 2007 very good! i was way off track! i figured the judge was corupt princess2007 Mar 08, 2011 ooh but cudnt ya think of it this way- the merchant said he'd lost a leather bag, he said nothing about losing the money inside. So technically the begger shud be given the money and the merchant the bag!! everything settled! Skybet Jul 07, 2011 Superb, loved it! tonjawithaj Jul 20, 2011 Very nice! Quocalimar Jan 11, 2013 I don't know if I'm just dumb, because no one else is commenting about itt but why wouldn't they assume the beggar, honest or not, stole the other 100. According to a perfect world where the beggar doesn't lie, and the fact that we know he didn't steal it, the answer works, but the judge doesn't know that, and it couldn't be a perfect world because the merchant didn't know the beggar wasn't lying.