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Mahavira, ca. 850

A powerful, unvanquished, excellent black snake which is 80 angulas in length enters into a hole at the rate of 7 and 1/2 angulas in 5/14 of a day, and in the course of 1/4 of a day its tail grows 1 and 1/4 of an angula.

O ornament of arithmeticians, tell me by what time this serpent enters fully into the hole?


Suggested Solution (Fritz Sharninghausen, WWU)

Every day, the snake grows 5 angulas.

Every day, the sanke goes into hole 14/5 x 15/2 = 21 angulas.

Net length into hole is 16 angulas per day.

The whole snake will take 80/16 days = 5 days.

Source: Mahavira