in the borges story

*death and the compas*s the final murder, which was supposed to occur on the forth point of a rhombus, is actually executed on the third point of an equilateral triangle. oddly, there is no way a fourth point added to an equilateral triangle can yield a rhombus* an equilateral triangle can compose half of a four sided polygon or at best a trapazoid, but a rhombus is composed of two isosceles triangles joined at the base, so thats my first confusion. my second confusion is in regards to the final shape the detective wishes to be executed upon in his next incarnation. the shape is drawn out above, a line segment starting at A with death occurring at D. what is the significance of this shape, is it referenced in kabbalistic literature? is it nonsensical (doubtful)?*im defining rhombus as a four sided parallelogram without 90 degree angles, im aware certain definitions allow a

square to be a rhombus but that seems redic

## 3 comments:

A rhombus must contain four equal sides. If you join two equilateral triangles on one side, you get a rhombus.

"an equilateral triangle can compose half of a four sided polygon" - yes...and that four-sided polygon must be a rhombus!

"a rhombus is composed of two isosceles triangles joined at the base" - only if the isosceles triangles happen to be equilateral (which is a special case of an isosceles triangle)

Regarding the line segment death walk: he travels the full length of the segment, then half the length, then half of that...reminiscent of Zeno's paradox, perhaps?

Oh I'm totally wrong about that second thing:

"a rhombus is composed of two isosceles triangles joined at the base" - yes absolutely! but an equilateral triangle is still a special case of an isosceles triangle.

whoops your totally right re. the rhombus i was not thinking properly - will edit.

yes it is reminiscent of zeno's paradox. i was thinking the exact same thing (as were the last two people i asked making it four consecutive people suggesting zeno's paradox) but i think if thats really what borges was trying to convey he could have done it more clearly. the length btw points is reduced by half each time but D is still specified as an endpoint. there MUST be a better explanation...

im going to ask a rabbi

Post a Comment