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The Archery Butt


The butt or target used in archery at Solvamhall was not marked out in concentric rings as at the present day, but was prepared in fanciful designs. In the illustration is shown a numbered target prepared by Sir Hugh himself. It is something of a curiosity, because it will be found that he has so cleverly arranged the numbers that every one of the twelve lines of three adds up to exactly twenty-two.

One day, when the archers were a little tired of their sport, Sir Hugh de Fortibus said, "What ho, merry archers! Of a truth it is said that a fool's bolt is soon shot, but, by my faith, I know not any man among you who shall do that which I will now put forth. Let these numbers that are upon the butt be set down afresh, so that the twelve lines thereof shall make twenty and three instead of twenty and two."

To rearrange the numbers one to nineteen so that all the twelve lines shall add up to twenty-three will be found a fascinating puzzle. Half the lines are, of course, on the sides, and the others radiate from the centre.

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