1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data A bird feeder of large mass is hung from a tree limb, as the drawing shows. A cord attached to the bottom of the feeder has been left dangling free. A child pulls on the dangling cord. The dangling cord is cut from the same source as the cord attached to the limb. Is the cord between the feeder and the limb more likely to snap with a slow continuous pull or a sudden downward pull? 2. Relevant equations Newton's laws of motion? 3. The attempt at a solution I think it does not matter and here is my reasoning: The tension of the higher string must be greater than the tension of the lower string. When the child pulls on the lower string, the tensions of both strings should increase by the same amount. Therefore, the top string will always have higher tension and will snap first. But I just feel that something is wrong about this, because (by problem construction theory ) one case should be the top string breaks and the other should be the bottom string breaks. And when I try to imagine it in my head, it seems like the bottom string will snap first if the pull is sudden. What is the correct and why?