Once upon a time, a great blacksmith visited Akbar’s kingdom. He was an expert in making shields and spears.
King Akbar asked, “Blacksmith, I have heard that you are the greatest blacksmith in all the kingdoms. I wish to know more.”
The Blacksmith said proudly, “My King. It is true. I am the greatest blacksmith in the world. All blacksmiths learn to make hundreds of weapons. I make only two, the spear and the shield. Both of these weapons, no one can make better than me.”
The Blacksmith gave the shield to the King. It was heavy and made of a metal which was not heavy yet was very strong.
The Blacksmith said, “My King, this shield is made of a very rare and strong metal. No spear in the world can pierce it. It is the strongest shield in the world. It is a true fit only for the greatest king.”
The Blacksmith gave the spear to the King. It was light and extremely sharp.
The Blacksmith said, “My King, this spear is the sharpest spear ever made. There is no shield in the world which can stop it. It is the best spear in the world. It is a true fit only for the greatest king.”
Birbal laughed loudly and said, “You are lying on one or the other. I can say that for sure.”
The Blacksmith got really angry and said, “Minister, forgive me for saying this but you do not know much about weapons as I do. But I shall ask you, prove it to me.”
Birbal smiled and said, “I will throw your spear at your shield. If your spear breaks the shield, then the shield is not unbreakable. If your spear breaks, then the spear has been stopped.