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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Mother & Four Sons Instagram Riddle: What’s the Name of the Fourth Son?


What is the name of the fourth son…

Recently, a riddle about a mother and four sons has been circulating around Instagram. Three sons are named North, South, and East, and people have to guess what the name of the fourth son is. Specifically, a person is supposed to direct message the person posing the riddle and guess the name. If they get it wrong, they have to post the riddle on their own Instagram story.

The riddle goes something like this: “Someone’s mom has four sons North, East and West.What is the name of the fourth son. Can you guess the name of the fourth son?”

The names in the riddle vary, but are always three of the four cardinal directions. Spoiler alert: the fourth son’s name is not the fourth unnamed cardinal direction, as you might think.

Here’s what you need to know:

What’s the Name of the Fourth Son? The Instagram Riddle, Explained

The name of the fourth son isn’t clear, but it can be guessed. Here’s an explanation from the user Ryan Rynjah on Quora:

The very first line states, “someone’s mother has… ” and so on. From this, one can ascertain that the the name of the fourth child is “someone”.

However, if one looks at the names of the other children (North, East, West), it seems very likely that the name of the fourth child is “South”, which is in keeping with the pattern (the cardinal directions).

And finally, the way the question is phrased, it seems that no matter what the name of the fourth son is, the answer to the question can only be ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

From the last line : “Can you guess the name of the fourth son?”.

Additionally, I’m not sure whether this is a mistake or not, but in the middle sentence (What is the name of the last son.) a full stop is used instead of a question mark. This would mean that the son’s name is ‘What’, unlikely as it seems.


Therefore the answer is:

Yes, I can guess the name of the fourth son, and the most likely names are either Someone South or What.

As others have noted, the final question is one that requires a yes or no answer, not an explicit answer.

So the correct answer is YES. Yes, you can technically guess the name of the fourth son.

READ NEXT: ‘Until Tomorrow’: Meaning of the Instagram Caption Challenge


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