One of my favourites this week. Can you rearrange these six matchsticks to leave nothing?

How many answers can you come up with?  There is one that is especially nice.  As ever. please do NOT post your solutions, but do say if you have solved it and how long it took.  See you on Monday!


  1. Yes, I saw an answer to this question – well, two answers – in ten seconds of looking. Amusing.

  2. Great idea, Kraut! 🙂

    Got the obvious (I think) solution immediately, Kraut’s immediately after reading his clue.

  3. Eight so far if I’m understanding the question…if meaning “rearrange leaving nothing” is to use all six matchsticks in a closed shape? If not then there are many…..hmmm

    1. no take that back my first was right but for the wrong reason…….but after rereading and knowing our host’s past Friday Puzzles all is not as it seems… I have two answers…..sneaky……hmmm yes very sneaky….. :}
      Then again I may change my mind again …… but think I got it now…..hehe

  4. I have an idea – took me about one second. And there are seven small hints in this post as to what it is…

  5. 3 possible solutions, no time at all. In my opinion only one of them is really valid if you take the question to be meant literally.

  6. Got an answer quite quickly, and am quite pleased with myself as this doesn’t always happen. Just wait to see if it’s right now!! Have a good weekend everyone

  7. Several ideas and solutions, mostly in the first minute.

    I am sure more will occur.

    Nice to see an open-ended puzzle for a change.

  8. I got a couple of solutions in a few seconds. I now have a third, slightly sneaky one after about a minute.

    1. I think I’ve got the same one. It’s the most likely of my solutions to be the intended one.

  9. Between sneaky ones and others more acceptable, I have 7 and growing… unless I understood incorrectly the kind of puzzle.

    (That understanding came very late… after that, the puzzle solutions came fast, but until that,… for a while, I wondered if the idea was to see all the ways of taking out all the matches. Dumb!!!…)

  10. I don’t understand the question (maybe because I’m not a native english). When do you leave nothing? My only guess is when there’s nothing left, but that doesn’t sound like a logical question.

    1. You will still have the 6 sticks, they would be rearranged to indicate some concept of nothing.

  11. I didn’t quite understand it and had to look it up. Found 2 answers and the one I like involves moving only two matchsticks.

  12. I’ve got A solution took me about 30 seconds. Don’t know if i’m right though. Makes sense to me i guess. Fun thanks Richard

  13. The hardest part was to figure out an interpretation of the question that I could solve. After that it was seconds.

  14. Rather confusing and vague problem description. Leaves a virtually infinite number of tricky solutions that may or may not be intended. I got two of those in seconds.

  15. I thought of two very different ones in seconds.

    Since we’re not allowed to post answers, lets just say one is a “how would a know-it-all kid solve it?” solution, the other is a “how would a caveman solve it?” affair.

  16. 3 solutions. I looked at the puzzle about half an hour ago, but didn’t really start actively working on solutions (dedicating time or effort to thinking about it) until about five minutes ago.

  17. I know it’s taboo to reveal our answers to the question on this post but here goes…


    “No, I cannot.”

  18. 3 solutions (including the neat one, I believe) in 5 minutes more or less. There would be a 4th one which is quite obvious but not nice at all.

    I have to admit that after playing with the matchsticks in my head for a couple of minutes, finally I had to take 6 small sticks and put them on my desk.

    1. New here? You mean you haven’t invested in some matchsticks and keep them handy? Give it time … will………

  19. the seem to be standing still as it is, I don’t think they’ll be leaving anything any time soon :l

  20. Is this supposed to be a puzzle or a riddle?

    As a riddle I get one straight away, and as a puzzle (with somewhat slack definitions of “nothing”) I had another three within a few seconds.

    1. Flavio I think CharlesT is related to my loose lipped green cheek conure Jade……hmmm…..makes me think where IS ScreamingGreenConure ant way?

  21. Hmmmm…. I believe I must be over thinking this one!

    I am getting too philosophical, need to remember it’s just a matchstick trick 🙂

  22. I tried for 1 minute and then gave up in abject frustration!
    I have one literal answer that does not enter into the spirit of these sort of puzzles!

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