|"Alcuinus abba"=Father Alcuin|
Alcuin became head of the palace school at Aachen, where he established a great library, revised the liturgy, wrote treatises and poetry and works on grammar. It is his influence on learning that is said to have vaulted Latin into the position of being the academic language.
Propositiones ad Acuendos Juvenes is attributed to Alcuin, because of its date and because it is the kind of work he would have created for the pupils at Aachen. The 50+ puzzles in it are very mathematical, with three river-crossing problems—although in his early example the items are a wolf, a goat, and a cabbage. Solutions are provided for all the problems.
Or almost all. There is one that has no solution offered, and it goes like this:
A certain man has 300 pigs. He ordered all of them slaughtered in 3 days, but with an uneven number killed each day. What number were to be killed each day? (Problem 43)There can be no solution to this puzzle, for obvious reasons. (Feel free to post the reason why in the comments to explain it to your fellow readers.) The assumption is that it was given to difficult students to frustrate them.
*Alcuin also recorded the destruction of Lindisfarne.