Math Problem of the Week # 8

If x=y2 and x2+y2+2xy=100, what is (x+y)4 ?

Machiavelli and The Prince

The Prince is a political work written in 1513 during the Renaissance by the humanist writer Machiavelli. Machiavelli suggested several strategies to his readers on how to be a good prince. He suggested that it is better to be feared than loved, because fear motivates people to do things, while love of a prince can … Continue reading Machiavelli and The Prince

Math Problem of the Week #7

Paul arranges 4 cubes with the colors green, yellow, blue, and red in a row in facing him. What is the probability that the red cube and the blue cube are on opposite ends of the row?

Petrarch & The Renaissance

The Renaissance was a period in which there was a revived interest in ancient Greek and Roman works of literature. It was caused, in part, by the flow of Byzantine scholars fleeing to the west from the east from the invading Turks. These scholars brought many ancient works of literature to the west. One of … Continue reading Petrarch & The Renaissance

Did The Little Flowers give the common man confidence regarding life beyond the grave?

The Little Flowers of St. Francis of Assisi had several stories about the afterlife of some friars in the Franciscan order. One of the stories describes a devout friar named John Della Penna. He joined the Franciscan Order as a child, expecting to go to heaven at once. He did not go to heaven as … Continue reading Did The Little Flowers give the common man confidence regarding life beyond the grave?

John Wycliffe & The Great Western Schism

John Wycliffe was an English priest and a professor at Oxford University in the 14th century. He lived from 1320-1384. Wycliffe taught many things contrary to the beliefs of the church in his day, including the denial of the authority of the pope, predestination, the denial of the necessity of confessing to a priest, among … Continue reading John Wycliffe & The Great Western Schism

Math Problem of the Week #6

I am a little late on the posting of this one, so here it is: In a 2D plane, four equilateral triangles share a side with each of the sides of a square with area 144. None of the vertices of any of the four triangles lie inside of the square. What is the total … Continue reading Math Problem of the Week #6

The Little Flowers of St. Francis of Assisi on how to gain eternal life

The Little Flowers of St. Francis of Assisi is a piece of literature written in the early 14th century about certain acts and miracles said to be done by St. Francis of Assisi. Francis founded the Order of Friars minor in 1216, also known as the Franciscans. The Franciscans were devoted to poverty, preaching, and … Continue reading The Little Flowers of St. Francis of Assisi on how to gain eternal life

Would a typical listener to The Song of Roland notice it’s discrepancies?

In the medieval epic The Song of Roland, there were multiple discrepancies, some of which change key premises in the poem. One of the most obvious discrepancies was the problem of the numbers of the two opposing armies: Charlemagne and the French and Marsilie and the Muslims in Spain. The Muslim king Marsilie is said … Continue reading Would a typical listener to The Song of Roland notice it’s discrepancies?