Tenaliraman and the great pundit
Once a great Pundit visited the Vijayanagar court. He told the king that he was a great expert in everything known in the earth. He wanted to argue with all learned people and defeat them. Many great pundits tried but failed miserably. By that time, news about this reached Tenaliraman. He took a small bundle from his house. He tied it to look like a book, He went to the court and said that he was prepared to argue with the learned man, but the subject of argument would be based on the great book, “Thilakashta Mahisha Bandhanam”. The great Pundit had never heard of any such book. So he asked one night’s time to prepare for the debate. That entire night he could not sleep. He never wanted to be defeated and so he ran away before morning writing to the king that he never knew anything of that great book. Next day, only Tenaliraman came for the argument. The king who was also very intelligent, wanted to read this great book called “Thilakashta Mahisha Bandhanam.” Tenaliraman told that king, that there was no such book. In the bundle he had only til (gingelly) called Thila in Sanskrit, some sheep’s dung called Kashta in Sanskrit and the entire thing was tied by a rope made of the hide of Buffalo (Mahisha). The king and the court appreciated the intelligence of Tenaliraman.