One day the Hodja noticed a man trying to sell a sword for the exorbitant price of 3000 bits. Wondering what made it so expensive, he approached the man and asked him. He was told that it was made of the finest steel by a master craftsman and had the magic power of extending three times its length when waved at the enemy.

Nasreddin Hodja lost no time. He rushed home and was back at the market place almost immediately with an ordinary pair of fire tongs in his hand. He was waving it and shouting:

"Only 300 bits! Don't miss the chance of a lifetime! Only 300 bits! Don't miss the chance of a lifetime! Only 300 bits for this magic pair of tongs!"

A small crowd had gathered around him. Somebody said:

"Why, Effendi, what makes that pair of tongs so expensive? I would say it isn't worth more than 3 bits of my money!"

"Don't be deceived by appearances, friends! That man there is selling a sword for 3000 bits! Do you know what it is that makes it so expensive? It is because of its magic power to extend three times its own length when waved at the enemy! Why, this pair of tongs, when thrown at me by my wife, extend to twenty times its length! I should say they are dirt cheap at 300 bits!"

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