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The Man in the Picture

A man is looking at a picture of a man on the wall and states, “Brothers and sisters I have none, but this man’s father is my father’s son.”

Who is the man in the picture in relation to the man looking at the picture?

The man in the picture is his son. Since he doesn’t have any brothers or sisters, the statement my father’s son is himself. A shortened version would be this man’s father is myself, so he is the father of the man in the picture.

Posted in Brain Teasers


65 Comments on "The Man in the Picture"

Gopika says
January 23, 2015 @ 05:44

the answer is son

hoova says
March 19, 2015 @ 18:05


GR says
April 20, 2015 @ 20:46

The answer is NOT the sun, but it is himself. The man is looking at a picture of himself.

Dan says
April 20, 2015 @ 22:02

Nope, it’s not himself.

francois says
April 28, 2015 @ 16:12

No he is talking about his brother. He is just saying he is poor. In other words he’s saying…. (Ladies and gentelmen I have non!) Then he talks about his father son… This mans father is my father’s son.
It’s like shake spear? Brothers and sisters! Or a black shake spear… Its like saying wuz up my brothers and sisters….

Dan says
April 28, 2015 @ 21:06

Even if he was saying he was poor, it still wouldn’t be himself. “This man’s father…”. Think about that who that is for a few minutes. Then about who your “father’s son” is if you don’t have any siblings. Then put the two together.

swathi says
June 15, 2015 @ 14:19


Dylan says
June 16, 2015 @ 04:03

If he was talking about himself. He would be saying his father is his fathers son.

Rob says
June 21, 2015 @ 14:11

Hes looking in a mirror

Rob says
June 21, 2015 @ 14:12

Its a photo of himself

Sheldon Burke says
June 24, 2015 @ 08:44

The term “and sisters” is extraneous. The answer would be the same if that term was omitted.

Dan says
June 24, 2015 @ 09:17

True, but it helps with the rhythm.

Sean says
June 29, 2015 @ 04:08

Simply put, he is talking about his half-brother. Same father, different mother; therefore, the man in the picture is his nephew.

Ciel says
July 3, 2015 @ 09:41

this is actually a good riddle :)

Jared says
July 3, 2015 @ 11:56

If I am a man with no brothers, then “my father’s son” is simply “me.”
So we can substitute that in, and we get, “That man’s father is (me).”
He’s looking at a picture of his son.

Ajeesh says
August 5, 2015 @ 08:24

He is looking at his son’s pic

Tyler says
August 14, 2015 @ 11:53


marvelous!! says
August 16, 2015 @ 19:36

The answer to it is “”my son””……
according to d speaker,he had no siblings.
Pointing To his picture,
he said”but dis man’s father
(referring to me or which is myself)
is my father’s son” referring to himself…..therefore the speaker is “my Son”.

jah says
September 1, 2015 @ 06:41


Dan says
September 1, 2015 @ 10:54

“Brothers and sisters I have none”

Kyle says
September 26, 2015 @ 09:24

I know the answer says his son but that makes no sense….why would he refer to himself as my father …his fathers son minus another brother would be himself

Kyle says
September 26, 2015 @ 09:26

Ah never mind

jo says
September 27, 2015 @ 23:16

its is his son, put it this way,
” he is the son of my fathers son”

Tay says
November 1, 2015 @ 19:03

It’s himself
-No siblings
That mans father (HIMSELFs father)
Is my fathers son (HIS FATHER) SON which would be him

Thanks I’m right ?

Jacub says
November 7, 2015 @ 00:04

The man in the picture is his son,
It can also be himself as well its weird. But replace the man in the picture with a girl (which is how I always heard the riddle), then ask who is the girl in the picture to the man looking at the picture.

Brothers and sisters I have none but that girl’s father is my father’s son.

Dragon Bane says
December 18, 2015 @ 21:08

The man looking at the picture is certainly the man in the picture’s father, unless you believe the evangelical version, which should have a comma, colon, or even a semi-colon after “Brothers and Sisters”.
I think I first remember hearing it as:
“I am looking at a picture of a man. This man’s father is my father’s son.” Who is the man in the picture.
The answer to that one is either the riddler’s son, or his nephew, as ambiguated by the lack of mention of siblings.

Dave says
January 29, 2016 @ 07:07

He lookin in mirror

mary says
February 8, 2016 @ 22:42


mary says
February 8, 2016 @ 22:50

That Man’ is my father’s son. If I have no brothers and sisters then my father’s son can only be me.

Lance says
March 2, 2016 @ 18:59

How about his clone!

Sweet Stylin says
March 31, 2016 @ 13:01

it’s his son, right?

Nebulous says
April 4, 2016 @ 08:53

The question’s wording contains too much noise. Solving this sort of problem requires identifying the signal within the noise. Like a talented stage magician, the many unnecessary words, uncommon sentence structures, and even the rhyming serve as misdirection from the answer.

If I restate the question using short sentences and only the necessary data, look how easy the answer comes:
1. If I don’t have any brothers, who is my father’s son?
2. Given the above, what man could claim my father’s son (me) as his father?

Damo says
April 17, 2016 @ 18:39

Had a massive argument about this riddle today (I lead a sad life!). A friend of mine told me the correct answer is that it’s a picture of himself. I say it makes no sense. If the man in the picture is himself and he says that mans father (his father), is my father’s son. So to that means, his father is his father’s son. Maybe I’m missing something? …

Sii says
April 24, 2016 @ 02:32

He’s talking about himself but simply put it doesn’t ask whom he is talking about, it asks who is the man, This man’s father is my father’s son…..the man is his son

Dan I says
May 1, 2016 @ 18:28

D man in d mirror is his son…

mark says
May 1, 2016 @ 21:09

the key is “my father’s son”, it can only be himself. He is looking at a photo of himself.

ToiletPolice says
May 15, 2016 @ 18:53

This riddle has 2 answers, both of which are correct in reference to “this man”:

1. Himself (if he’s looking at a picture of himself, then his father’s son would be himself)
2. His son (if he’s looking at a picture of his son, then his son’s father is the same person as “my father’s son”)

To remove the ambiguity, this riddle needs a huge disclaimer like: “it’s not himself”

Dan says
May 15, 2016 @ 19:57

@ToiletPolice There is no ambiguity. The man can never be looking at himself. He states, “This man’s father”. Are you suggesting he can be his own father?

Patrick says
August 19, 2016 @ 15:35

“My father’s son” is himself, obviously.
He has no brothers or sisters, so it has to be himself.
For the purposes of clarity, let’s have this guy call himself Andy.

So, substitute it.

“Brothers and sisters, I have none, but this man’s father is Andy.”

Under what circumstance would Andy, himself, be the person in the photograph’s father?

If, and only if, he was looking at a picture of his son.

Thanks, seeya

Kyser says
October 26, 2016 @ 22:07

Its his dads illegitimate son on his mother’s sidel.

Humility says
November 10, 2016 @ 04:37

He is looking at the picture of a man on the wall,then he said to himself,This mans father (the father of the man in the picture)is my father’s son(the man speaking is the only son of his own father,then ,the man in the picture is a son to the man speaking.)
to clear u well, the question says who is the man in the picture,and not who is the man speaking,
so therefore : The man in the picture is a son to th man speaking

Greg says
December 4, 2016 @ 05:47

There are 2 answers:
1) The direct approach. Take a selfie, look at it and repeat the riddle. Obviously the man speaking and the man in the pic are the same person.
2) Reverse engineering: start at the back. My fathers son is me. That mans father is me. That man is my son.
A perfect example of dilution through reverse engineering.

Timmy Chase says
January 12, 2017 @ 08:23

You guys are all idiots, it’s obviously his son…. you have to work backwards my “fathers son” if he has no brothers and sister must be himself, BUT WAIT there is another part. “That mans father” so that mans father is himself…. who could it be???? His son you morons. It’s his son.

shahin says
January 22, 2017 @ 19:30

the answer is his Son.
end of story.

Billy says
March 9, 2017 @ 19:19

This should be a standard test for operating any heavy machinery.

Does everyone saying “it’s clearly himself” not realise how wrong they are? Is this all some elaborate joke on me?

“That man’s father is my fathers son”

Imagine he just said

“That man is my father son”

Then is him obviously.

Now go read the line again

“That man’s father…. is my fathers son”

Come on. Don’t be so dumb.

Lockhart says
April 7, 2017 @ 17:42

The answer is the guy son. The Who is looking at the picture is looking at a photo of his son. Explanation- put yourself in the guy looking at the picture shoes. If I look at a photo and say I have no brothers or sisters obviously I’m the only child. So if I look at this photo of a man and say this man farther. I would be talking about myself. Then say his father is my father son. I’m talking about myself. So the guy in the phot can only be my son since I have no brother or sisters

Kevon says
May 15, 2017 @ 14:28

Only in some weird alternate reality where anything is possible would be this guys transgender second cousin. I’ve debated this for years with many people and every time they answer he is looking at himself

It seems I’ve been surrounded by idiots my whole life and. O one can see it’s his son, even argued it out with the wife for the last 30 mins before she agreed.

Reading all the comments provided amusement tho

Ioane papalii says
July 22, 2017 @ 23:45

A nephew, my brothers son.

Vaibhav says
April 14, 2018 @ 10:14

HIS SON is the answer

rgc says
May 5, 2018 @ 02:33

There is only ONE correct answer. Not two. And the CORRECT answer is that the man is looking at a photograph of his son. THINK about it, people. It’s not advanced music theory!

Arun says
January 17, 2019 @ 00:02

There are 2 possibilities, neither of which is himself.
(1) His son
(2) His nephew

Tomm says
March 1, 2019 @ 00:38

There are not 2 possibilities, as Arun claims. The answer is it’s his son. It can’t be his nephew because he has no brothers or sisters, therefore no nephews or nieces.

LIZA says
August 20, 2019 @ 11:16

come on…. the answer is simple… he is looking at a picture of himself!

Jackson earle says
February 18, 2020 @ 02:08

It’s himself
You can’t be your own father and it’s says “MY fathers son” MY not his

Dan says
February 18, 2020 @ 08:04

@Jackson earle My father’s son is indeed himself, but he says this man’s father is himself.

Sergio says
May 14, 2020 @ 13:06

Is the stepbrother!!!

Veritas says
October 28, 2020 @ 13:37

To solve this, break it down.
‘Brothers and sisters I have none’ = I’m an only child
‘Yet this man’s father is my father’s son’ = This man’s father is me
Put it all together – I’m an only child and this man’s father is me – the photo is of his son.

Ron says
March 31, 2021 @ 13:15

This sparked numerous family rifts going back to the 60s
How on Earth can it not be the son?

Mikegee says
July 18, 2021 @ 19:02

To start with, let’s say the speaker is looking at a picture of his son (that man, so not woman). Then, that man’s father (the speaker) is my father’s son (the speaker). Solved once and for all.

Andy says
July 20, 2021 @ 10:14

In reply to the question. Who is the man in the picture?. I put myself to the test. I came into the sitting room and a picture of myself of many years ago was on the wall. I looked at it and then I read the rhyme. “Brothers sisters. I have none, but that man’s father is my father-son. The answer is Myself. Then I went out and entered the room again. This time I stared as a picture of my son. And repeated the rhyme. The answer was. My Son.. It’s a trick and the rhyme is there to confuse us. Otherwise so many would not be right or wrong, and Google who are the experts did not come up with a definite answer. :-)

Dan says
July 20, 2021 @ 14:40

@Andy You’re incorrect on the first example. It simplifies to “that man’s father is me”, and you cannot be your own father. (Your father’s son is you if you have no siblings).

Billy Bob says
August 13, 2021 @ 16:28

This riddle was invented to help smart people in the world identify who around them is stupid, so that they can avoid those people. (And, yes, the one and only possible answer to the riddle is that he is looking at a picture of his son.)

sidd says
September 21, 2021 @ 03:35

The confusion comes how you interpret “he?”

Is the subject of the question (he) “That man” or “That man’s father”

In english language this is called an ambiguous antecedent. The pronoun “he” could refer to “That man” or “That man’s father”

Now if you say “I am looking at a picture of someone and that man’s father is…” then the it might seem logical that the subject of my question is the person I am looking at in the picture, which would clearly(?) imply the subject of my question (he) is “that man”

But in another context, I am in a crowed room, and I am talking to a friend. I point to a person across the room and say “that man’s father used to be [on TV/the mayor of Schenectady/date my wife]. Who is he?”, my friend might infer that i am seeking the identity of the “that man’s father” and not the man I am pointing to, and therefore the subject of my question (he) is “that man’s father”

Of course, in either case the opposite could be true, and hence the ambiguity.

which makes this the perfect riddle/bar bet**… because after the has concluded their logic, you can simply switch your context and say no, “he” refers to [the opposite of what was answered].

** it is only the perfect bar bet if you are big or can run very fast.

Sidd says
September 21, 2021 @ 03:37

##because after the mark has concluded their logic,###

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