District 12 Tesserae Math

For those of you wondering why Gale tells Katniss his name is in 42 times, we’re going to show you the math (with the help of this lovely wind-blowing GIF from pondsland.tumblr.com) :

According to the Capitol’s rules, your number of entries increases each year you age from 12 to 18:

Age

12 years old: 1
13 years old: 2
14 years old: 3
15 years old: 4
16 years old: 5
17 years old: 6
18 years old: 7

And just to put into perspective how unlikely it was for Prim to be chosen, here are the tesserae totals of the individuals we know and love:

Hunger Games Characters

Prim: 1

(12 years old = 1, taking the minimum)

Peeta: 5

(16 years old = 5, no need for more tesserae)

Katniss: 20

(16 years old = 5 + 3 additional sets — one for herself, prim, and her mom. 5 x 4 = 20)

Gale: 42

(18 years old = 7 + 5 additional sets for himself and four family. 7 x 6 = 42)

Major thanks to Robin for making a correction about maximums in the comments below.

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6 responses to “District 12 Tesserae Math

  1. Katniss’ name was only in 20 times. There is no “maximum.” she took three tesserae (one for herself, prim, and her mom). 3*5=15 plus her mandatory five, therefore she was only in twenty times. Gale had 42 because of his mandatory 7 plus 5 tessare (himself, hazelle, vic, posy/dad, and rory) times 7 years. 35 + 7 = 42

  2. Can someone please explain to me why they’re multiplying things here? Because the way it’s explained in the book, I thought it was just supposed to be (for example Katniss) 5 slips in because she’s sixteen, plus three more (one for each family member) but to get the real answer you have to multiply… why are we multiplying!?!?! xO I’m so confused

  3. ope never mind, got it 🙂 because you have to multiply how many times each year you’re taking out tesserae for your family Ex: Katniss originally would have to take 5 because she’s sixteen, and then you add the tesserae ones (which is 5 x 3 because for five years she has been taking out three tessera) which is fifteen so fifteen plus five is twenty! Ah I get it now

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