Hesbt Berma – Berma counting

Hebst Berma

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“Hesbet Berma” is an old Egyptian saying when one is calculating something complicated or when someone can’t think of something. When something is described as “not a Hesbt Berma”, it means that it is so easy to accomplish. The origin of this famous saying comes back to one of the Egyptian villages called Berma near Tanta city.

The story begins when a woman was walking a carrier loaded with eggs. Suddenly one of the people bumped into her and she dropped the carrier so all eggs were crashed. The guy wanted to apologize for what happened and he asked her: Excuse me mam, I would like to know how many eggs were in the cage?

“If you count the eggs by three of them, you will be left with one egg. Also, If you count the eggs by four of them, you will still be left with one egg. Also, the same if you count by five or six of them. But If you count by seven of them, you will not have anything left.” 

The man kept thinking about it and it was hard for him to guess the exact number of the eggs. The riddle spread around the village and people started asking each other till it was finally solved. After many calculations, they knew that the cage contained 301 eggs. And this is how people began to use this proverb.

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