The pan - One day, Hodja borrowed a pan from his neighbor. After he had finished using it, he took it back to the neighbor with a small pan tucked inside. When the man saw it, he was most surprised. “What is that?” he asked. “Well, said the Hodja, when I borrowed your pan it was pregnant and it brought a child into the world.”

The man smiled and accepted them. A few days later Hodja borrowed the pan again but this time he did not return it. The man was confused. He went to Hodja and asked “What about my pan?” “I am very sorry”, said Hodja, “but it died.” “Don't make jokes with me”, replied the man, “How can a pan die?” “If you believe that it brought a child into the world”, said Hodja, “why can't you believe that it died?”

Nasreddin Hodja and his dunkey

How much should a sultan cost ? - One day Sultan Temur asked Hodja: “How much would I cost, if I were a slave?” The Sultan, thinking that he had a beautiful body, expected a very high sum to be offered.

But the Hodja's answer came without hesitation and it was most unsatisfactory. “Fifty pounds!” “But my clothes alone cost that much”, said the Sultan. Hodja's answer came quickly and clearly. “I meant your clothes”, he said.

A proud mountain - One day Hodja claimed that he could do whatever he wanted. The people wanted him to show his ability. They told him to call the mountain. “Mr. Mountain”, said Hodja. “Would you come here for just a minute?” Of course nothing happened to the mountain. He called again and again, then he began to walk. “Hodja”, said one of the men. “Where are you going?” Hodja answer: “I'am not a vain person myself, If I call the mountain and it doesn't come to me, I go to it.”

Liver recipe - One day the Hodja thought he would like to eat liver. So he went and bought some from the butcher. When he was happily returning home, he met a friend and told him what he had bought. “Do you know, how to prepare this liver?” asked his friend, and Hodja suddenly remembered that he didn't, because he was poor and he couldn't eat it very often. “No” he said.

His friend told him how to prepare it, but Hodja asked him to write it down. So he did, and Hodja took the recipe, put it in his pocket and went on his way. As he got near his house a peregrine falcon swooped down, took the liver, and flew away. The Hodja called after it helplessly: “You have got the liver, but you will not enjoy it because I still have the recipe!”

Strange job of God - Hodja collected 1000 coins over many years. One day a thief came and stole his money. Hodja was very sorry and prayed every night. After many days, a man came and gave 1000 coins to Hodja.

Hodja asked: “What is this?” The man explained: “I am a sailor and my ship almost sank. The waves lashed the ship and we were all very frightened.” and he continued “So I told myself: If I return safely on land, I will give 1000 coins to a Hodja' and here they are.” When Hodja heard this he said: “Dear God, what a strange job you have. Where did my money go and from where does it return! What is the use of this?”

A unexperienced Nightingale - One day Hodja wanted to eat peaches and he saw a garden full of peach trees. So he climbed up a tree and began to eat them, one after the other. But Hodja was an unlucky man. While he was eating with great appetite, the owner of the garden came.

The Hodja hid behind the branches, but the man heard something moving and shouted: “Who is there?” The Hodja was afraid and sang like a nightingale. The man shouted: “You, come down, a nightingale doesn't sing like that!” “What didn't you like?”, shouted Hodja. “Can an inexperienced nightingale sing better than this?”

Where to go - The people asked the Hodja, “Dear Hodja, tell us, where should we go in a funeral procession, in front, at the back, or at the side?” The Hodja answered, “It doesn't matter where you go, as long as you don't go in the coffin.”

Nasreddin Hodja


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