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Let be given $131$ distinct natural numbers, each having prime divisors not exceeding $42$. how to Prove that one can choose four of them whose product is a perfect square.

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Sounds like the pigeon hole principle will come into play? – Jyrki Lahtonen Jul 6 '12 at 4:07


  1. There are 13 primes below 42.
  2. $\displaystyle{131\choose 2}>2^{13}$.
  3. Easier version.
  4. Out comes two pairs of numbers $(a,b), a\neq b,$ and $(c,d), c\neq d,$ such that $abcd$ is a square. If all four are distinct, we are done. If, say $b=d$, then $ac$ is also a square. Repeat without $a$ and $c$ using $$ \displaystyle{129\choose2}>2^{13}. $$
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You mean $131\choose 4$? – Jonas Meyer Jul 6 '12 at 4:17
@Jonas: No. Counting pairs. Two pairs make a quartet. – Jyrki Lahtonen Jul 6 '12 at 4:19
Thank you. My mistake. – Jonas Meyer Jul 6 '12 at 4:20
Initially I though that there is a little bit of slack in the number 131. I was wrong :-) – Jyrki Lahtonen Jul 6 '12 at 4:31

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