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An exercise in creative thinking from The Party Magician

The Donkey Puzzle

The Donkey Puzzle

Over the years numerous advertising puzzles have been based on this puzzle. The earliest version used two dogs and appeared in “The Magician’s Own Book,” published in 1857. In 1872, Sam Loyd, the great American puzzle creator adapted the concept and produced “The Trick Mules Puzzle.”

The idea of two figures which have four parts that are interchangeable dates back to the Middle Ages. The concept was also popular in many other cultures.

How creative are you?

One of the key qualities attributed to great creative thinkers and problem solvers is their ability to see things in different ways!

This puzzle is deceptively simple. It consists of just three pieces. Two of them show a donkey; one piece shows two riders.

The object of the puzzle is to arrange the three pieces so that you see two donkeys being ridden by two riders. The two donkey cards will not overlap each other in the correct solution and you cannot cut, fold or mutilate any of the pieces.

The riders must be seen to be riding each of the donkeys in the correct manner, that is, on its back, positioned in the saddle, facing forwards.

You must be able to see all of each donkey, except, of course, the obvious part that will be hidden under the saddle and rider when the donkey is being ridden correctly.

When you click on the link, you will receive the puzzle as a one-page PDF. Print this out on card stock or glue the paper to card stock. Then cut the puzzle pieces apart where shown.

Can you solve it?

For creative solutions to your entertainment puzzles, contact The Party Magician.

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Do you need a hint?

The solution to this puzzle is quite tricky. It requires a real leap of imagination. If you need a little help in working out the solution, click the link on the right.

Give me a hint!