Three Wives Problem and Shapley Value. Answer to Professor De Mesnard’s Criticism

Silviu Guiasu

Table of Contents


The solutions of the old problems of bankruptcy, rights arbitration, and contested garment were given in the Talmud without any justification. A paper published in the journal Synthese (Guiasu 2011) showed that these solutions may be obtained using the Shapley value from the n-person game theory if the characteristic functions of the games corresponding to these three problems essentially depend on the respective context. Three years later, a criticism of the paper from Synthese was posted on the internet (De Mesnard 2014). Here is the answer to this criticism.

Classification JEL : B11, B16, C02, C71


  1. Introduction
  2. Solving the Talmudic problems of bankruptcy and contested garment using the Shapley value
    1. Solution of the bankruptcy problem
    2. Solution of the contested garment problem
  3. Answer to Professor De Mesnard’s criticism
  4. Conclusion


  • bankruptcy
  • rights arbitration
  • contested garment
  • maximal or cumulative n-person games
  • Shapley value