Take a minute and try to put the digits 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 into the grid so that the sum is the same for each row, column, and large diagonal.

If you have succeeded, then you have filled out something called a magic square. (I will refrain from posting the solution so that inquiring minds do not accidentally see it. Just Google “magic square” or “Lo Shu diagram” if you need an answer key.)

These squares have intrigued people through the ages. Some thought that the completed squares held mystical properties and proceeded to carry them around as talismans against evil. Others, like Benjamin Franklin, found them so interesting that they spent much time on finding bigger ones. Ben Franklin even delved into creating magic circles!

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