The Poisonous Wine Puzzle

Difficulty Level

A king is hosting a party and has got an information that one out of the four bottles of wine contains poison .He has four prisoners to be hanged next day. But he wants to try with minimum number of prisoners. How many numbers of prisoners does he need to find the exact poisonous bottle?

View Answer Comments(3)

The king can try with 2 prisoners.

Let us name them prisoners A & B. A consumes a drop from Bottle 1 and B consumes a drop from Bottle 2 and both consume each drop from Bottle3.

If A dies, it means poison in Bottle 1,

if B dies Bottle 2 is poisonous,

if both die it means Bottle 3 is poisonous and

if none dies Bottle 4 contains poison

He needs only one. The only prisoner drink bottle by bottle until he dies. Or after three bottles he stops and we know that the poison is in the fourth bottle.

:) Nice reply. Yes we can sort it out with only one prisoner, provided we know in how much time the poison will take effect and kills.

What if he makes only 1 prisoner drink all the 4 bottle 1 after the other.