Verbal Reasoning - Syllogism - Discussion

In each of the following questions two statements are given and these statements are followed by two conclusions numbered (1) and (2). You have to take the given two statements to be true even if they seem to be at variance from commonly known facts. Read the conclusions and then decide which of the given conclusions logically follows from the two given statements, disregarding commonly known facts.

Give answer:

  • (A) If only (1) conclusion follows
  • (B) If only (2) conclusion follows
  • (C) If either (1) or (2) follows
  • (D) If neither (1) nor (2) follows and
  • (E) If both (1) and (2) follow.


Statements: Some papers are pens. All the pencils are pens.


  1. Some pens are pencils.
  2. Some pens are papers.

[A]. Only (1) conclusion follows
[B]. Only (2) conclusion follows
[C]. Either (1) or (2) follows
[D]. Neither (1) nor (2) follows
[E]. Both (1) and (2) follow

Answer: Option E


Anvitha said: (Sep 28, 2010)  
Can anyone please explain this?

The word commomn in both the statements should not come in the conclusion na, then how the answer will be E.

Aishwarya.Y said: (Aug 31, 2011)  
Actually the answer is based on "convergence" formula of both. It is true in both cases of venn diagram. So both 1 and 2 folllows.

Swagata said: (Sep 12, 2011)  

If we go according to the distributed and undistributed pattern. Since the middle term "pens" isnt distributed even once.

So the statements donot hav any conclusion.


I agree with anvitha. The word "pens", since common should not come in the conclusion.

Kiran said: (Sep 13, 2011)  
If we go according to the distributed and undistributed pattern.

Only Conclusion 2 follows.

Because middle term "pencils" is distributed from statement2.

Bhagya Naidu said: (Sep 22, 2011)  
Some easy method is necessary to know about it easily.

Dr. E Rajeevan said: (Dec 5, 2011)  
1. "Some pens are pencils" cannot follow since in the syllogism, the middle term (pen)is not distributed. This is shown by the fig.1 given. in deductive arguments conclusions that are ceratain can only be considered.

2. "Some pens are papers" follows from "Some papers are pens" using the rule of conversion.

Hence the ansswer is B; "Only (2) conclusion follows"

If possible, use Venn diagrams or Syllogistic rules to solve such problems.

The diagrams of the type given above may not exhaust all possibilities and hence can be erroneous.

Even in using such diagrams, look for the possibility of rejecting the conclusion rather than accepting it. If there is any possibility to reject, reject it.

In addition, one may use the rules of opposition (contradictory, contrary, sub-contrary and sub-alternation) and eduction such as conversion obversion contraposition and inversion to attempt all such problems.


1. "Some pens are pencils" cannot follow since in the syllogism, the middle term is not distributed. This is shown by the fig.1 given. In deductive arguments conclusions that are certain can only be considered.

2. "Some pens are papers" follows using the rule of conversion from "Some papers are pens".

Hence the answer is B "Only (2) conclusion follows"

Dr. E Rajeevan

Kasi Reddy said: (Dec 11, 2011)  
TO this problem answer is given "D" so which one is correct answer please explain this?

Ajit said: (Dec 21, 2011)  
According to the rule 3 of syllogism, the middle term should be distributed. Here the middle term is not distributed.

Shruthi said: (Jan 3, 2012)  
can anyone tell the correct answer ?

Kushal said: (Feb 22, 2012)  
I think only CONCLUSION II follows . Can anyone elaborate the explanation

Rajesh Nriit said: (Mar 27, 2012)  
Both the conclusions cannot follow because the middle term pens not distributed at least once in the premises and another one is conclusions does not contain middle term.

Arti said: (Nov 8, 2012)  
By the rule of conversion 'some papers are pens' can be written as 'some pens are papers'. So conclusion (2) is correct. Now 'all the pencils are pens' can be written as 'some pencils are pens' that again written as 'some pens are pencils'. So conclusion (1) is also correct. So the answer is (e).

Lovegod said: (May 10, 2013)  
I do not see how either conclusions are valid since the middle term is found only in one premise.

Narendra said: (May 22, 2013)  
None of the conclusions follow as they don't fall in the 24 valid cases.

Devendra said: (Aug 27, 2013)  
Option D will be correct why because middle term in both cases are not distributed, at least in one premises it should be distributed.

Mou said: (Sep 6, 2013)  
The answer should be D since the middle term is not distributed.

Abdul said: (Oct 2, 2013)  
Since the "Middle Term" of the given two statements is not distributed. Hence Neither of the conclusion follows.


Clearly, since both premises are particular, no conclusion follows.

Condition: The Middle Term (M) should be distributed at least once in the premises, the conclusion cannot follow.

Condition: If both premises are particular, no conclusion follows.

Vik said: (Oct 24, 2013)  
Some papers are pens.("I") - isn't M(pens) distributed there? as I understand M is not distributed in "A" and "O".

Vinod said: (Jan 3, 2014)  
From the syllogism rules the middle must be distributed at least once to draw the conclusion. But in this case the middle term is not distributed so we can't conclude from it.

Raktim said: (Jan 16, 2014)  
Shouldn't this be none the of the following as both the conclusion is dependent on one of the statement which should not be the answer.

Venky said: (Jan 30, 2014)  
Simply saying : all pens are pencils and the sentence "Some pens are pencils "should be wrong.

Yamshi said: (Feb 18, 2014)  
The middle term of the premise is not distributed so no conclusion can be drawn.

Shakambhari said: (Apr 12, 2014)  
With the help of Venn diagram we got the correct answer without any doubt.

Jayageetha said: (Jun 14, 2014)  
As per rules, no trivial (particular) solution can be drawn for this question. There can be many solutions like 1. All pencils are papers.

2. Some pencils are papers, 3. Some papers are pencils, 4. Some Pens are pencils and 5. Some pens are papers. Now, has the option been 'no conclusion can be drawn', then that would have been the clear answer. But since there are options which holds true for 2 of our conclusions (4&5) , we can say that both follows rather than saying neither follows.

Ambika said: (Jul 15, 2014)  
For me this kind of question should be avoided in any competitive exam because it create confusion. We may be drawn conclusion by venn diagram while the examiner drawn conclusion by syllogism and answers may be different. Finally we are the people who suffer.

Mohana Priya Savithri said: (Nov 16, 2014)  
The first thing, in the rule of conversion do the following things.

1. All can be convert to some.
2. Some to some.
3. No to no.


1. All pens are paper (statement).

Conclusion: Some papers are pen (change the subject and predicate).

Here Subject is pens and predicate us paper.

2. Some pens are paper (statement).

Some papers are pens (conclusion).

3. No pen is paper (statement).

No paper is pen (conclusion).

So that both follows. Got it?

Tribhuwan Bahuguna said: (Jan 16, 2015)  
I completely agree with @Mohana Priya Savithri, as she has rightly mentioned the correct way of using convergence formula. Simply if one will follow the same and go through it one will get the correct answer. As I did, so now no need to scratch much your brain :).

Deepak Kumar A said: (Feb 10, 2015)  
Ya I too agree with Mohana Priya Savithri, as subject and predicate can be interchanged in I patterned type. Both conclusion follows.

Rajesh Neelam said: (Aug 12, 2015)  
Correct Answer D. I+I = no conclusion (neither).

Sumit said: (Sep 14, 2015)  
"Some pens are papers" is not possibility. It is definite conclusion and there is no direct relation between pen and paper so how is it correct. I think it follows only first sentence.

Bubbly said: (Dec 10, 2015)  
The correct answer is D,

Because common term (pens) is not distributed atleast once. So we won't get any conclusion.

Swetha said: (Dec 27, 2015)  
Please help me in tick and cross method I was totally confused by all this methods.

Sanghmitra Choudhary said: (Feb 10, 2016)  
Here the first statement is particular positive and the second statement is universal positive.

According to rule in 2 statement question there can be only 3 terms in 2 statement question.

I have solved like this:

1) I have converted the second statement in particular positive like some pens are pencil as there are 3 terms we have to make a->b then b->c.

So I have converted. But when both statements we take conclusion then as particular positive statement can be given conclusion only when 2 statement should be of universal positive or universal negative.

Then only both statement will conclude. So the answer should be neither follows. Then why E please reply.

Ashu said: (Mar 6, 2016)  
Answer should be D. As middle term is not distributed.

Amar Deep Kunjan said: (Aug 11, 2016)  
Yes, option E is correct by Venn diagram.

Vinith Paul said: (Aug 17, 2016)  
How it comes? Please explain me.

Divya Kunju said: (Sep 20, 2016)  
I think here they mentioned some papers are pens. But not some pens are papers. So only conclusion (i) follows.

Dinesh Singh said: (Sep 24, 2016)  
According to figure it looks correct but when we think from formula point of view,

Some papers are pen.
All the pencil are pen.

There will be vertical cancellation so we count All + Some = No conclusion.
Is there anyone who can clear my doubt?

Ashok said: (Oct 21, 2016)  
I think the answer should be D.

Deepa said: (Nov 8, 2016)  
I think it's only (2) conclusion follows.

Mark said: (Dec 9, 2016)  
Yes, I agree. My answer is also D.

Swati said: (Dec 10, 2016)  
Answer will be (D).

Because the middle term pen is not distributed in any of the premises.

So conclusion can't be drawn.

Adithi said: (Feb 24, 2017)  
The answer must be option D.

Parag said: (May 10, 2017)  
@Swati and @Adithi.

Please explain the reason.

But option B is right, pencils only distributed in pen according to this, conclusion 2 is right.

Aqil said: (May 10, 2017)  
Only conclusion 2 follow by 0, 1 method.

Kardy said: (May 19, 2017)  
Both, conclusion one and two follows. This is because if you reverse the sentence 'some paper are pens' you get 'some pens are papers' similarly if you reverse. 'all pencil are pens you get 'some pens are pencil'.

Shouvik said: (May 20, 2017)  

We are missing another fact that we check for distribution for the middle term only if a Conclusion is derived from the two statements! Since here both the conclusions are independently derived from a single statement, there is no reason for why should we look for middle term distribution. Accordingly, both statements follow here, so correct Option comes out to be E applying all the Aristotle's Rules. Thanks.

Shalini Gupta said: (Apr 27, 2018)  
Option E is correct.

Deepanshu Samdani said: (Jul 20, 2018)  
Neither 1 nor 2 follows, this should be the answer, because in sentence "Some papers are pens" : papers and both are not-distributed and in sentence "All the pencils are pens" : pencils is distributed and pens are not-distributed so, if the common predicate (here is pens) is not distributed at least one time, then we can not draw any conclusion.

So, option 4 (D) is correct.

Pushpanjali S said: (Aug 17, 2018)  
Middle term is not distributed so neither 1 or 2 follows.

Anoimie said: (Oct 14, 2018)  
D is the answer as, pen is common and it is not distributive so no conclusion can be made.

Sankalp said: (Sep 17, 2019)  
I think B will be the answer, only B follows. How can A will Be true? all Pencils are pen, so how some pens are pencils?

Anand 7829701865 said: (Oct 4, 2019)  
Both follows, but possible venu diagram may be wrong, since all pencils are pens but it show some pencils also papers.

Divyansh Rai said: (Jan 8, 2020)  
The Answer is D because the repeated term can not give a conclusion.

Grazielle Samara said: (Nov 1, 2020)  
Some pens are pencils - CORRECT cause we know that ALL Pencils are Pens( Pencil are all inside Pens).
Some pens are papers- WE CAN NOT AFFIRM THIS. Since as the figure shows, the pencil can be OR NOT in the middle. The only thing we can ensure is that Pencil is inside Pens. Nothing less
So, in my opinion, the answer A is correct: Only 1 follows.

Lokesh Verma said: (Mar 7, 2021)  
If we go according to the distributed and undistributed pattern.

Only Conclusion 2 follows.

Bitumen said: (Mar 11, 2021)  
The answer is correct because we can reverse both statements and come to the conclusion where the first one can be reversed from "Some papers are pens" to "Some pens are paper" and similarly, the second statement can also be reversed from "All the pencils are pens" to "Some pen are pencils". Hence we can say that both conclusions are true i.e. option E. Both (1) and (2) follow.

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