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Hatim, The Wrestling Contest Between The Cat and The Tortoise


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Hatim, The Wrestling Contest Between The Cat and The Tortoise

  1. 1. HATIM (Adapted from a Folktale) Hatim was a rich man; but this did not help him at all to be in the good graces of the Sultan ofMalaya. Hatim‟s friends persuaded him to fight the Sultan, but he refused. “No, I‟ll just go away and hide,”Hatim said. “In time, the Sultan will know that I am innocent and loyal to him.” So Hatim went away to hide. Nobody knew where he went. The Sultan ordered that five hundredpieces of gold be the price on his head. But nobody could find Hatim. In the little hut near the forest lived a poor man named Ibrahim. He was contented with life; but hiswife was not. “Our hut is small. My clothes are old-fashioned. Nothing grows on our garden because it is allpebbles,” she often complained. Once, while the couple was walking in the forest, they stopped by a cave to rest. The wife airedher usual laments. “I am very unhappy. The hut is very small. Our children eat nothing but rice and fish. If wehad money, we could buy more lands. We could buy bigger house and we would all be happy. If youcould catch Hatim, the Sultan would give us five hundred pieces of gold and all our dreams would cometrue.” “Don‟t say that,” said Ibrahim. It happened that Hatim, who was hiding in the cave, overheard this dialogue. “Poor woman!” hesaid. “Five hundred pieces of gold would make her very happy. I‟m old and don‟t wish to live long.” Hecame out of hiding and said to Ibrahim, “I am Hatim. The Sultan had put a price on my head. Take me tothe Sultan and he will reward you with five hundred pieces of gold.” “No, no, no!” said Ibrahim. “You are a good man. We don‟t want the money.” Three men coming to the forest saw Ibrahim and his wife with Hatim. Abdul, one of the men,recognized Hatim. He said, “That man is Hatim. He has a price on his head. I will take him to the Sultan sothat he will give me five hundred pieces of gold. “Oh, no!” said Rahmat, the other man. “I saw him first.” “But you didn‟t know who he was,” said Abdul. “I knew him from afar,” said Kasim. “But I said nothing because I thought that you did not know.Why should i sahre you the reward?” The three men took Hatim to the Sultan. Wanting to help Hatim, Ibrahim and his wife went withthem. “Which of you men found Hatim?” the Sultan asked. “I did,” said Abdul. “You spoke first,” said Rahmat, “but I saw him first.” “No, you didn‟t,” said Kassim. “I saw him from afar.” Looking sadly at Hatim, Ibrahim was at loss asto how to help him.
  2. 2. Then the Sultan asked Hatim, “To which of these men shall give the five hundred pieces of gold?Which of them found you?” “O Sultan,” said Hatim. “None of these three men found me. This poor man found me. Give him themoney,” and Hatim pointed to Ibrahim. “Come here,” said the Sultan. “What is your name?” “O Sultan, I am Ibrahim.” “Did you find Hatim?” “No, O Sultan.” “You did not! Then who?” “O Sultan, no one found Hatim. He heard my wife saying, „We are poor. We have no money. If wehave five hundred pieces of gold, how happy we would be!‟ Then he came out of the cave where he washiding, he said, „Take me to the Sultan and he will give you five hundred pieces of gold.‟ But I would not doit.” “Would you die so that this poor man might be happy?” asked the Sultan looking at Hatim. “I am an old man. I do not wish to live long,” said Hatim. “They are young and may have manyyears before them.” So the Sultan knew that Hatim was a good man. He said, “Come here, Hatim and sit at my side.You can help me much to be a good Sultan.” He said to his servants, “Hit Abdul one hundred and sixty-fivetimes, and Rahmat and Kassim one hundred and sixty-six times each.” Then he said to Ibrahim, “Take the five hundred pieces of gold and be happy.”WORD FILTER Identify the correct meaning of the word or idiom. Study how the underlined word or idiom wasused in the paragraph indicated in the story. Write the letter of the meaning which best illustrates its use inthe sentence. 1. Hatim hoped that the Sultan would find him innocent of the crime. a. Without harmful intention b. Not guilty c. Unaware 2. Her dream of finishing college and landing a good job will soon be realized. a. Something very beautiful b. A goal or purpose c. A series of thoughts and images occurring in sleep
  3. 3. 3. Because the convicted prisoner escaped, there is now a price on his head. a. A reward for the capture or death of person b. Amount for the sale of goods c. Cost at which something is obtained 4. Through hard work and good service, the janitor remained in the good graces of the manager. a. Be forgiven b. Be full of gratitude c. Win the approval of 5. Jobless, the father was at a loss about how to support his family. a. Could not do anything b. Could not recall c. Could not accept the factGEMSTONES 1. Who among the characters showed this traits: discontent, generosity and unselfishness, justice, truthfulness, respect for authority? 2. Why do you think Hatim refused to fight the Sultan? 3. What trait did Hatim and Ibrahim both have? 4. How did Ibrahim find out about the price on Hatim‟s head? 5. Why did Ibrahim refuse to take Hatim to the Sultan? 6. How did the Sultan find out about Hatim‟s real character? 7. Why did Ibrahim and his wife accompany Hatim to the Sulatn? 8. Was the Sultan‟s decision about the price money fair? Why? -----♥...m◦m...♥-----
  4. 4. THE WRESTLING CONTEST BETWEEN THE CAT AND THE TORTOISE (A Fable by Abayomi Fuja) In the country of the Animals, the cat was regarded as the champion wrestler of all the animals, forhe had so far managed to throw everybody who had challenged him. It was, therefore, not surprising thathe enjoyed great popularity, and his friendship was greatly sought after. One day, the tortoise came to call on the cat and invited him to visit and accept his hospitality.Now the cat had been warned that the tortoise was very clever and sly person, so when the tortoise invitedhim to his home, he did not want to go. He made excuses and put off the visit. The tortoise was far fromsnubbed by the cat‟s refusal, and continued to press his unwanted friendship. At last, the cat, more for the sake of peace and quiet than for friendship‟s sake, agreed to visit thetortoise. When he arrived he was surprised, for the tortoise had prepared a large and very fine fish, andplenty of wine, fufu (an African delicacy) and cola nuts. Now the cat was very fond of all these things andsat down beside his host and enjoyed the feast. Having eaten to satisfaction, he lay down and stretchedhimself out under the shade of some large, cool banana leaves, thinking sleepily to himself that the tortoisewas not such a bad fellow after all, and that the reports about him had been incorrect. After this, the two animals became close friends and were often to be seen seated under theshade of the banana leaves in tortoise compound. One day, some little time after this, the tortoise suddenly asked the cat how he managed tobecome a champion wrestler and throw animals that appeared to be much stronger than himself. “Ah,”said the cat. “You see I have a powerful juju (charm or amulet) which I use when I wrestle: in this way I amable to throw all comers. It is very easy indeed.” “Tell me, my friend,” replied the tortoise. “How many jujus you have, and what they are. Perhaps Iam seeking for too much information, but I am very interested in your great powers, and I am your friend.” “That is very easy,” answered the cat. “I am willing to tell you. I have two jujus that I use,” and thecat related what they are. Now the cat was very clever and not such a fool as the tortoise imagined, for inactual fact he used three jujus for his wrestling contests. He did not tell the tortoise about the third one. Some time later, all the animals were very surprised indeed to learn that the tortoise had taken upwrestling. At first they laughed at the idea of a tortoise wrestling, but as the tortoise continued to win thecontest after contest against all corners, their surprise and admiration grew. Meanwhile the cat watchedwith great amusement, but said nothing. As the tortoise defeated each corner, his conceit grew, until the day came that the cat had beenwaiting for. “Why don‟t you challenge the cat?” said all the tortoise‟s supporters. “You are now the strongestanimal among us. And the cat has been successful for ages and we have noticed that he has notchallenged anybody for a long time. Now is your chance to become the champion wrestler in the land ofanimals. Try throwing the cat.” “Yes,” replied the conceited animal, “now I will throw the cat and make him acknowledge me asthe champion wrestler in the land. Go and arranged the day for the contest.”
  5. 5. On the day appointed, there was a great concourse of animals gathered and much excitementand talk on the merits and chances of both contestants. An open space was marked off and the animalssat down outside to watch what promised to be the most interesting wrestling match ever held, for neitherside had ever been defeated. In the first bout, both the cat and the tortoise used the first juju, and after a great struggle, a drawwas announced. In the second bout the animals used the second juju, and another great tussle ensued, withouteither animal overcoming the other. This, too, was declared draw. The tortoise now suggested that they share the championship between them, but all the animalscalled out for a third and final bout to settle the matter. Having no more jujus, the tortoise decided to use a combination of the first and second juju. Thecat, of course, used his third juju with a result that the tortoise was soundly beaten. And ever afterwards, thetortoise has taken good care to avoid the cat and the wrestling ring.WORD FILTER Read carefully the following sentences and get the meaning of the underlined word from thecontext. Then choose from the list after each the correct meaning. 1. A person with much conceit thinks he will always win in a contest. a. Long preparation and practice b. Too much appreciation of one‟s worth or virtue c. Too much interest in one‟s good look 2. A large concourse of students came to see the Concert at the Park. a. Gathering b. Collection c. Variety 3. He listened to my jokes with amusement. a. Interest b. Concern c. Delight or pleasure 4. Since both contestants were equally good, the game ended in a draw. a. A tie or equal score b. A postponement c. A replay 5. We serve the best food and give the best beddings to guests to show our hospitality. a. Wealth and influence b. High standard of living c. Friendliness and kindness to guests
  6. 6. 6. Only the strong should join a wrestling contest. a. A game where two persons try to throw the other with bare hands b. A game of richness in vocabulary c. A game of cards where players cannot cheat.GEMSTONES 1. What is the difference between clever and wise? Which adjective better describes the cat? The tortoise? 2. Why was the tortoise very desirious of becoming the cat‟s friend? Was his friendship sincere? 3. Was the cat right keeping his third juju a secret from the tortoise? Why? 4. What character trait did the tortoise show when he challenged his friend the cat? 5. What lesson does the able teach? 6. Read about other African folktales and learn about African ways of living. -----♥...m◦m...♥-----