Amazing Animals Horses that Could do Mathematics
About some amazing horses in Germany that supposedly could do mathematics and tell time.
THE HORSES THAT COULD DO MATHEMATICS
With a sack tied over his head, the horse, Muhamed, could extract cube roots in his head, tapping out the units with one front hoof, the 10s with the other. (If the answer were 43, for instance, the horse would tap 4 times with his left foot, 3 times with his right.) And Muhamed was not the only genius horse in that stable in Elberfield, Germany, in the late 1800s. There were also Kluge Hans (Clever Jack) and Zarif. Authorities were skeptical; they were sure that the horses' feats were manipulated by their master, Karl Krall; that somehow, through gestures or other signals, he was giving them the answers. However, no one was ever able to prove any trickery. In fact, Muhamed performed almost as well without his master as when the master was present. And then Berto, a blind stallion added to the group later, was also taught to do arithmetic. If he were blind, how could signals be sent to him? It seemed certain then that the wonder horses of Elberfield represented no hoax. In addition to being mathematical geniuses, the horses could read and tell time by the clock. Panels of scientific experts came to scoff at the horses--and left awed.
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