Friday, December 28, 2012

A New Year Riddle

Four friends - John, Jesse, Gerald and George - went to a New Year Ball with their wives. At first, each danced with his own wife only, but after midnight the couples went wild. Eileen danced with John, Arleen with Darleen's husband, Marleen with Arleen's husband, Jesse with Gerald's wife, and Gerald with John's wife.

Can you untangle - who is married to whom?

Your answers accepted any time until midnight on Sunday on our Family Puzzle Marathon. They will be hidden till then and everyone who submitted something reasonable will get a puzzle point.

This riddle is from a Russian puzzle book by C. Koval.
Party image from flickr, distributed under CCL.


Leah said...

First, I made a chart and figured out who *danced* with whom. My chart included all the men and women and following their names, their possible roles (John's wife, Arlene's husband. Pretty quickly, through elimination, I was able to figure out the "wife of" or "husband of" that each person danced with. By using Eileen danced with John as a starting point, and seeing that John danced with George's wife (on my chart, I know that Eileen must be George's wife. Same with John. On my chart Eileen danced with Marlene's husband, so John must be Marlene's husband. Carrying it through, Darlene is married to Jesse and Arlene is married to Gerald.
That was fun. : )

Jerome said...

Hard!! Double Hard!!
I have no method for this, other than brute force. The only logic step I did was to start with Eileen. Was she George's wife or not. Turns out she is. That's the only way I could get it to work.

Here are the Husband Wives.
George ==> Eileen
Jesse ==> Darlene
Gerald ==> Arlene
John ====> Marlene

Dances with ...
George ==> Darlene
Jesse ==> Arlene
Gerald ==> Marlene
John ====> Eileen

Likely I've made an error.

Annie said...

Eileen is married to George, Arleen to Gerald, Darleen to Jesse and Marleen to John.

Anonymous said...

John is married to Marleen, Jesse is married to Darleen, Gerald is married to Arleen, and George is married to Eileen.

Daniell via

Anonymous said...

Kim via email:

Hi Maria,

Not convinced my answer got to you, so here's what I posted:

Love this puzzle!!

Husband-Wife combos:
George & Eileen
Gerald & Arleen
Jesse & Darlene
John & Marlene

And as for the dance partners, that's:
Eileen & John
Arleen & Jesse
Darlene & George
Marlene & Gerald

Maria said...

Hey, you all. Amazing!
Danielle, Leah, Jerome, Annie and Kim - everyone untangled it correctly. A big end-of-the-year puzzle point to each.

Happy Holidays and see you back next year, just in a few days.

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