At one time the Hodja had converted the ground-floor room of his house into a shop, where he used to sell all kinds of odds and ends.

One day he went down to get something out of the shop. It being dark inside, he knocked down a sieve which was hanging on the wall, and then he fell over it. The poor Hodja, in trying to get up, stepped on the side of the sieve and this time hurt his knee. To the frustrated Hodja, it now seemed that he had not an inanimate object to deal with but a devilish adversary.

Picking it up, he threw it down on the floor with all his might; it bounced, and this time it hit the Hodja in the eye.

Now he could stand it no longer. He ran up the stairs to his house, and in a moment returned with a gleaming scimitar in his hand. Waving it threateningly:

"Now, " he roared, "I dare you, as well as all the other sieves in the world, to come on against me!"

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