In solving this
puzzle there were two things to be
achieved: first, so to manipulate the counters that the word VICTORIA
should read round the cross in the same direction, only with the V on
one of the dark arms; and secondly, to perform the feat in the fewest
Now, as a matter of fact, it would be impossible to perform the first
part in any way whatever if all the letters of the word were different;
but as there are two I's, it can be done by making these letters change
places—that is, the first I changes from the 2nd place to the
7th, and the second I from the 7th place to the 2nd. But the point I
referred to, when introducing the puzzle, as a little remarkable is
this: that a solution in twenty-two
moves is obtainable by moving
the letters in the order of
the following words: "A VICTOR! A VICTOR! A VICTOR I!"
There are, however,
solutions in eighteen moves,
and the following is one of them: I (1), V, A, I (2), R, O, T, I (1), I
(2), A, V, I (2), I (1), C, I (2), V, A, I (1).
The first and second I in the word are distinguished by the numbers 1
It will be noticed
that in the first solution
given above one of the I's never moves, though the movements of the
other letters cause it to change its relative position.
There is another peculiarity I may point out—that there is a
solution in twenty-eight moves requiring no letter to move to the
central division except the I's.
I may also mention that, in each of the solutions in eighteen moves,
the letters C, T, O, R move once only, while the second I always moves
four times, the V always being transferred to the right arm of the