When the producers of the new show “The Secret Life of Sherlock Holmes” were casting for the part of the protagonist, three young actors applied for the job. They all gave exemplary readings and the producers were hard pressed to chose between them. The director did have a slight preference for Byron Bentley, who came closest to fitting the director’s image of what the great Holmes should look like, so it was decided to determine how Bentley compared to Holmes in the reasoning department.
The director obtained five identical handkerchiefs and, in front of the three applicants, wrote “Sherlock Holmes” on three of the handkerchiefs and “Professor Moriarty”on the other two. He then stood Bentley center stage and pinned one of the handkerchiefs on Bentley’s back. Next, one of the other applicants was told to stand behind Bentley and a handkerchief was pinned on his back. The second applicant could see the name on Bentley’s handkerchief but could not see the name on his own.
The third applicant was placed behind the other two, so that he could see the names on their handkerchiefs but neither they nor he could see the name on the handkerchief that was placed on his back. Bentley, of course, could not see any handkerchief. “The first one of you who can deductively determine the name on his own back will get the part,” the director announced. After a few minutes of silence, Bentley correctly asserted that he was Sherlock Holmes.
HOW did Bentley know he was Sherlock Holmes?