The paradox of the Imp in the Bottle Would you pay $100.00 for a magic bottle that would grant your every wish except prolonged life? All the wealth you could dream of, fame, and beauty could all be yours. Would you pay if you knew that you must sell the bottle for less than you paid or you would be damned for all eternity? This is a paradox from the story The Bottle Imp by Robert Louis Stevenson. What paradox? Well consider that no one would buy the bottle for one cent since they could not sell it for less. Certainly no one would pay two cents because they would have to sell it for one cent and we already see that no one would buy it for one cent, so they would not buy it for two cents. By the same argument the price is raised to any king's ransom, and yet, at some high price, wouldn't you buy it? This type of paradox where the result of many little logical truths are contradictory to their chained consequence is often called a heap paradox or a sorities paradox from the Greek word for a heap or pile. The paradox is similar to the following idea: one grain of rice is not a pile, two grains of rice is not a pile, but eventually if we keep adding a single grian, we get a pile, yet it seems impossible to define WHEN it became a pile. A paradox is something that seems to go against logic or thought. The word paradox is from the Greek paradoxon joining the roots para for beyond with doxa for belief or opinion. The latter root remain in words like orthodox, decent, and decorous According to a Chronology of Recreational Mathematics by David Singmaster, the first examples of Paradoxes appeared around 330 BC in the writing of Eubulides. Earlier examples include the liars paradox created by Epimenides in the 6th century BC. In spite of their long history, the use of the term paradox for such logical contradictions seems to have been created only in the 20th century by Bertrand Russel.