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Pythagorean Theorem Legend

Date: 01/31/2009 at 11:45:45
From: Ethan
Subject: pythagorean theorem

Is there a Sioux Indian legend that refers to the Pythagorean 
Theorem?  The only thing we could find is the application of the 
formula with building teepees.



Date: 01/31/2009 at 17:12:18
From: Doctor Greenie
Subject: Re: pythagorean theorem

Hi, Ethan --

Not a real Sioux legend--just a nice pun (if you like puns....)

The story goes that a Sioux chief had a son who needed a wife, and 
three men in the tribe offered their daughters, along with dowry 
offers for the chief.

One dowry offer was for 20 beaver skins; they were soft and luxurious.

Another dowry offer was for 10 buffalo hides; they had many uses 
because of their toughness.

The third dowry offer, however, was for a single hippopotamus hide, 
which was rough and scratchy and, because of its extreme toughness, 
of no practical use.

But the daughters being offered with the first two dowries were 
rather plain, while the daughter being offered with the third dowry 
was quite attractive.

So the chief accepted the third dowry, proclaiming

  "The squaw of the hippopotamus is equal to the sum of the squaws
   of the other two hides"

  :^)

  or maybe your opinion is   :(

- Doctor Greenie, The Math Forum
  http://mathforum.org/dr.math/ 
Associated Topics:
High School Triangles and Other Polygons
Middle School Triangles and Other Polygons

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