The Late Imperial Primer Literacy Sieve was designed to answer one research question: what would a partially-literate Ming person understand from a stone inscription commemorating a premortem shrine? But the designer, Joshua Day, made sure that the software would produce both statistics and texts, so that the historian could explore the results in an iterative fashion, making discoveries that might prompt more questions. The Sieve indeed suggested an answer to the research question, but other scholars have used the Sieve in research and teaching on other topics, as this paper will briefly introduce. And the Sieve also yielded some unexpected results: it suggested that a reader who had learned a particular primer would be able to read about the same amount of any text in that genre. This unexpected result prompts other queries this paper will discuss: would knowing the same primers make a different genre more or less legible? Did the authors of premortem steles purposely write them for both highly educated men and (though less completely) primer-literate? When two primers yielded roughly the same percentage of legibility, were they teaching mostly the same words, or would learning a second primer dramatically increase reading ability? Would the Sieve reveal variations in expected literacy over place or time? This paper will explain the workings of the Sieve and some of the questions and answers it offers researchers in Chinese literature, as well as history.