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Title: More Conjuring - Simple Tricks for Social Gatherings
Author: Hercat
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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                            More Conjuring.


                               By HERCAT.


                             MORE CONJURING

                               BY HERCAT

                  Simple Tricks for Social Gatherings


  [Illustration: D&S limited]
            DEAN & SON, Ltd.,           [Illustration: Hamley's
                        160a,            35, NEW OXFORD STREET,
                Fleet Street,                 LONDON, W.C.]


The title of this little brochure indicates its contents. _Simple
Tricks_ and simple tricks only. No apparatus is required and but little
sleight-of-hand is needed in the performance of any of them. They
consist of a series of tricks and problems, easily acquired, suitable
for gatherings round the table on winter evenings. Some of them are new
and many are old; but even the oldest are new to the rising generation.
For six of the latest tricks,--"A Hindoo Swindle," "The Elusive Match,"
"A Subtle Impromptu Effect with a Coin," "A Novel Card Effect," "An
Artful Card Force," and "Another Easy Card Force,"--I am indebted to my
friend Mr. F. Walford Perry, a thoroughly up-to-date and original young
conjurer. As I have already said, I have included no tricks which
require the exercise of much sleight-of-hand; but even the most simple
trick should be thoroughly practised before you present it to your
friends, especially those tricks which require the assistance of a
confederate. Rehearse everything with him thoroughly beforehand. Even
your "patter" should be rehearsed. But endeavour to lead your audience
to believe that, like "Mr. Wemmick's" marriage, it is all impromptu. He
said, "Hello! here's a church. Let's have a wedding." You say, "Hand me
that serviette ring and I'll show you a trick." If, when the contents of
this little volume have been thoroughly digested, my readers desire to
make a study of more advanced legerdemain, I recommend my _Conjuring Up
to Date_, _Card Tricks with and without Apparatus_, and _Latest Sleights
and Illusions_ to their notice.

For tricks which require apparatus my readers cannot do better than to
send to Messrs. Hamley Bros., Ltd., 35, New Oxford Street, or one of
their branches, for their Magical Catalogue.

_The Daily Telegraph_, in a recent article on "Magic Fifty Years Ago,"
used these words: "Hamleys' were then, as they are now, the premier
manufacturers of magical apparatus." A statement which I cordially
endorse. The apparatus sold by Messrs. Hamley Bros. is invariably

In conclusion I beg to offer my readers the following advice:--

Never state the nature of the trick you are about to perform.

Make it a rule never to repeat a trick the same evening unless you have
acquired a different way of showing it. In fact, it is advisable to
learn several methods of presenting the same trick.

Talk as much as possible and make your "patter" lively, but do not try
to be funny unless you are naturally humorous; and, above all, avoid
allusions to politics, religion, or any subject about which there may be
a diversity of opinion among your audience.



SIMPLE CARD TRICKS                                                  PAGE

  An Easy Method of Finding a Selected Card                            9
  To Bring a Chosen Card from the Bottom of the Pack at any
                                                Number Requested      10
  A Chosen Card Shaken through a Handkerchief                         10
  A Selected Card found in a Lighted Cigarette                        12
  A Sticking Card                                                     13
  Two Selected Cards Caught in the Air                                13
  An Easy but Puzzling Trick                                          14
  Travelling Cards                                                    14
  To Name all the Cards in the Pack                                   16
  A New Method                                                        16
  The Sense of Touch                                                  17
  Where is the Ace?                                                   18
  To Make a Person Name a Card which You have Yourself Selected       19
  The Clock                                                           21
  How to Guess Cards Thought of                                       22
  An Ingenious Card Trick                                             23
  To Name a Card which Some One has Thought of                        25
  The Rejected Recruits--a Laughable Trick                            26
  A Novel Card Effect                                                 26
  An Artful Card Force                                                28
  Another Easy Card Force                                             28
  A Simple but Puzzling Card Trick                                    29


  How to Detect a Marked Coin                                         30
  A Penetrative Shilling                                              30
  Another Simple Trick                                                31
  A Coin to Disappear from Your Cheek and Reappear at Your Elbow      32
  Two Vanished Half-Crowns                                            33
  A Divination                                                        33
  An Effective but Simple Trick                                       34
  Changing Apple and Coins                                            35
  An Obedient Sixpence                                                36
  Coin and Glass                                                      36
  A Simple Experiment with Four Shillings                             38
  Puzzle of Ten Halfpence                                             39
  How to Increase Your Wealth                                         39
  A Neat Coin Trick                                                   40
  A Subtle Impromptu Effect with a Coin                               41
  An Original Coin Swindle                                            42
  A Cross                                                             43


  A Knot that Cannot be Drawn Tight                                   44
  To Tie an Instantaneous Knot in a Handkerchief                      45
  Half a Burnt Message Found Restored in a Candle                     46
  Two Good Ring Tricks                                                47


  To Ascertain a Number Thought of                                    49
  How to Name a Number which has been Erased                          51
  A Lesson in the Correct Formation of a Figure                       52
  Four Nines Problem                                                  53
  An Answer to a Sum Given in Advance                                 53
  An Arithmetical Puzzle                                              54
  An Arithmetical Mystery                                             55
  How to Tell Her Age                                                 55
  A Race in Addition                                                  56
  To Predict the Hour Your Friend Intends to Rise on the
                                               Following Morning      57


  Experiment with Ten Matches                                         59
  The Magic Nine                                                      60
  Triangles with Matches                                              61
  Match Squares                                                       61
  Your Opponent must Take the Last Match                              62
  A Shakespearean Quotation                                           63
  Numeral                                                             63
  Six and Five Make Nine                                              63
  The Artful Schoolboys                                               64
  What are Matches Made of?                                           66
  A Sheep Pen                                                         66
  Post and Rail Puzzle                                                67


  A Good After-Dinner Trick                                           68
  To Remove a Serviette Ring from a Tape Held on the Thumbs of
                                                  Another Person      70
  An Experiment in Gravity                                            71
  A Scissors Feat                                                     71
  Another Trick with a Pair of Scissors                               72
  An Indestructible Cigarette Paper                                   73
  To Cut an Apple in Two with Your Finger                             74
  A Trick with Dominoes                                               74
  An Escape                                                           75
  Cigarette Papers and Serviettes                                     76
  Four Cigarette Papers                                               77
  A Hindoo Swindle                                                    77
  The Elusive Match--a Capital Impromptu Trick                        79



Throw the pack on the table and request some one to select a card. Then
gather up the rest of the cards and request your friend to show his card
to his neighbour, to avoid mistakes. While this is being done bend the
pack slightly while pretending to shuffle it, and cause the card to be
returned and the pack shuffled. The selected card can then be easily
detected among the bent cards by its being perfectly straight. A good
way to finish the trick is to bring the card to the top of the pack and
cause it to project about an inch over the right side; cover the front
end of the pack with your four fingers so that the edge of the
projecting card is concealed, and, with your thumb at the other end,
hold the pack firmly about eighteen inches above the table. Request the
person who drew the card to call it by name. On this being done, drop
the pack on the table, when the projecting card will be completely
turned over by the air in its descent and lie perfectly square on the
top of the pack. Another good finish is to bring the chosen card to the
bottom of the pack, and requesting the person who selected it to hold
the pack by pinching it tightly between his finger and thumb close to
the corner, you give the pack a sharp rap, when all the cards will fall
excepting the one chosen.


Ask a member of the company to take a card, look at it, and return it to
the pack. Make the "pass" (_Hercat's Card Tricks_, p. 7); "palm" the
card (_Card Tricks_, p. 18) and hand the pack to be shuffled. While this
is being done transfer the palmed card to your left hand, and on
receiving the pack back, place it over the concealed card, and tell the
company you will produce the latter from the bottom of the pack at any
number they may name. Supposing some one says, "Let it be the fifteenth
card." You push the pack forward in your left hand, allowing the bottom
card to project about an inch toward you, and proceed to draw out the
cards above it with your right hand, one at a time, until the fourteenth
is reached, when you push the bottom card forward and produce it as the


Request a member of the company to select a card and return it to the
pack, which you proceed to wrap up in a large pocket handkerchief, and
on the person calling the card by name you shake the handkerchief and
the selected card falls on the table.

EXPLANATION.--If you are not an adept at sleight-of-hand it is advisable
to use a "forcing pack" which is composed of only three or four cards,
of a kind (i.e. ten kings of hearts, ten five of spades, ten eight of
diamonds, etc.) with backs to match your ordinary pack. If you can make
the "pass" and can "palm" (_Hercat's Card Tricks_, pp. 7 and 18) the
following is the correct _modus operandi_. On the card being returned to
the pack, carry it to the top by the pass, palm it, and hand the pack
back to be shuffled. Place the palmed card face upward on the left hand
and cover it with a large white handkerchief, and cause the pack to be
placed face down on the handkerchief exactly over the concealed card.
With your right hand throw the back hem of the handkerchief over the
pack and with that hand grasp the four sides underneath. Then reverse
the position of your hands, moving the right hand toward the right on
top and taking the left hand away, which will leave the selected card
concealed in the fold of the handkerchief (Fig. 1). Ask the person who
took the card to name it and request it to leave the pack and pass
through the handkerchief. When he does so shake the handkerchief gently
and the card will slowly come into view. If you use a "forcing pack"
retain a duplicate of the card you intend to force; conceal it in your
left hand and proceed as above described.

                                Fig. 1.


Roll a card, say the seven of hearts, in a cigarette paper and stuff a
small piece of tobacco in each end. Have this in one of your pockets,
where it will not get crushed, ready for palming. Previously arrange
with a friend to act as your confederate, and request him when you ask
him to select a card to take the duplicate of the one in the cigarette.
When ready to present the trick, hand the pack to your friend and ask
him to shuffle it, select any card he likes, show it to his neighbour,
replace it in the pack, and again shuffle the latter thoroughly. While
this is in progress produce some tobacco and a cigarette paper and roll
a cigarette, which substitute for the one prepared. If you are not an
adept at palming I would suggest the following easy method: Lay your
handkerchief across your knees, and on it place the prepared cigarette.
While reaching for a match, drop the cigarette you have just made on
your lap, as if by accident, and pick up the one containing the card.
You can afterwards pick up your handkerchief and put it and the genuine
cigarette in your pocket. You then light the prepared cigarette and ask
your friend to hand you the pack and name his card; when he does so,
tell him you will produce the card in any place he may name.

By previous arrangement he must say, "In the cigarette you are smoking."
You then pick up the pack and "ruffle" it over the cigarette; take the
latter from your mouth, extinguish the fire, and tearing the paper in
the centre, produce the seven of hearts from it.


Obtain a short "drawing-pin" with a small head, and having painted the
head black, stick it through the centre of the ace of clubs. Put this in
your pocket and "force" another ace upon a member of the company. Hand
the pack to the person upon whom you have forced the card, request him
to replace it and shuffle the pack. Then take the pack from him, and as
you turn your back slip the card with the pin through it on the top of
the pack. Holding the pack in your right hand with its face toward the
palm, ask your friend to name his card. When he does so throw the pack
sharply against the door. The top card will be held there by the pin and
the rest of the pack will fall on the floor.

This trick was shown by a conjurer before the late King Edward a few
years ago, and His Majesty was reported in the daily papers to have
expressed "great surprise."


Two cards are selected and returned to the pack, which you then make a
pretence of shuffling, taking care not to lose sight of the chosen
cards; "slip" (_Hercat's Card Tricks_, p. 10) one of the latter to the
top of the pack and the others to the bottom face upward. Have a small
piece of wax on your right finger and thumb and press the pack between
them. Obtain the names of the selected cards, and then throw the pack in
the air, moving your hand away quickly, with, of course, the selected
cards sticking to your thumb and finger. As the cards descend thrust
your hand in among them, and then, separating your thumb and finger,
show the cards adhering to them, which you will appear to have caught.


Any card may be drawn--not "forced"--and returned to the pack. In
pretending to shuffle the cards, bring the selected card to the bottom
of the pack, and then slip another card in front of it. Show your friend
this card at the bottom and ask him if it is his. Of course he will say
"No." Lower the pack, and with the fingers of your left hand draw the
bottom card back about half an inch, and with your right hand draw out
the next card--which is the one chosen--and place it face down on the
table. Shuffle the pack and again show the bottom card, "Is this your
card?" "No." "Then I will place this one on the table"--which you do.
Repeat this, and place a third card from the bottom of the pack on the
table. Then say, "I am sure your card must be one of the three. No? Look
and see for yourself." He turns the three cards over, and of course
finds his card is one of them.


Give the pack to a member of the company, and request him to count off
between twenty and forty cards, place the pack on the table, and hand
the cards he has counted to you. You then hand the pile to a second
person and request him to count off about one-third of the number, lay
them in a pile on the table, and hand you the remainder, which you give
to the first person, requesting him to place them in his pocket. Taking
up the second pile, you request the second person to place it in his
pocket. We will suppose the first person selected thirty and the second
person abstracted ten cards from them, which should leave twenty now in
the pocket of the former. Then announce your intention of causing a
certain number of cards to leave the pocket of person number one and
travel invisibly into the pocket of person number two. Open a
pocket-handkerchief, and covering number one's pocket, flick it in the
direction of person number two, exclaiming, "They have gone!" On the two
piles being produced and counted, those from the pocket of number one
person will number only fifteen, and the same number will be found in
the second pile.

EXPLANATION.--When you receive the thirty cards from the first person,
you palm off five or six cards (the number is immaterial) and retain
them concealed in your hand, handing the remainder to the second person.
When he has counted off ten and placed them on the table, you take those
that are left from him and hand them to person number one. When picking
up the pile of ten from the table, while pretending to square it, you
add the palmed cards and hand the pile thus increased to person number
two. You must be careful not to allow the two persons to count the cards
after the changes have been made. If you see they are inclined to do so,
take the piles from them and place them in their pockets yourself.


Ask some one to shuffle the pack, and, on receiving it back, glance at
the bottom card. Put the pack behind your back, and then turn the top
card round with its face toward you; bring the pack in front of you, the
bottom card facing the audience and the turned card facing you. Having
already glanced at the bottom card, you can tell them its name, and you
now know the card on top. Put the pack behind you again, and move the
top card to the front, and turn the one now on top round. Again hold the
pack up and name the front card, at the same time noting the card facing
you. By repeating this process you can name all the cards in the pack.
Take care to have all your audience in front of you, or the turned card
will be seen.


Here is an absolutely new method of performing the same trick
blindfolded, but with the aid of a confederate. You tell your friends
that by placing your hands on a person's head you can see with his eyes.
To illustrate this, tell your assistant to seat himself at a table, and
you then stand behind him blindfolded, with your fingers lightly
touching his temples. The cards are spread out faces down on the table,
and no matter which card he picks up and looks at, you at once say what
it is. Of course, you take the tip from him; but how? I will tell you.

He must keep his mouth shut and his teeth together. The slightest
pressure between his upper and lower teeth--so slight that it is quite
imperceptible--will cause his temples to throb--try it on your own
temples--and, of course, by the arrangement of a very simple code he can
communicate to you the name of each card. Say one throb stands for
hearts, two for diamonds, three for clubs, and four for spades. We will
say his temples throb twice. You say, "You are looking at a diamond."
Then we will suppose they next throb five times. You say, "It is the
five of diamonds," and so on. When you come to an ace, of course one
throb will suffice; when he picks up a knave, let him give two throbs in
rapid succession--a kind of postman's knock; a queen, a postman's knock
and one throb over; and for a king, a double postman's knock--rat-tat,
rat-tat. With a little practice and a more elaborate code, you can
describe all kinds of articles which may be selected--keys, watches,
books, etc. It is a capital trick and one which no one can possibly


This is an improvement upon the two preceding tricks which I invented
several years ago, and have shown scores of times without the _modus
operandi_ being once detected.

EFFECT.--The pack is handed to the audience to be shuffled, and, without
even glancing at it, the performer places it behind his back and names
each card (presumably by the sense of touch) before he draws it. He can
hand the pack back to the audience to be shuffled as many times as

EXECUTION.--Before handing the pack to be shuffled, ascertain which card
is on the top, and palm it in the right hand; receive the pack back in
the palm of the left hand and cover it with the thumb.

Put both hands behind you and slip the palmed card between the tips of
your left first and second fingers; then palm the top card and take the
card originally palmed between the right thumb and the forefinger with
your thumb on top. While doing this, explain to the audience that you
have with considerable practice acquired a marvellously keen sense of
touch which enables you to ascertain the name of each card by simply
feeling it. You proceed to say: "I will name each card before showing it
to you, and you are at liberty to shuffle the pack as many times as you
may desire.

"The card I am now feeling appears to be (say) the queen of spades." You
then show the card held between your thumb and finger, at the same time
glancing at the palmed card. Throw the former on the table, and putting
your hand behind your back again, nip the palmed card with the first two
fingers of the left hand, and palm the top card as before. You can go
through the whole pack in this manner, but each time you hand it to be
shuffled, be sure to have one card palmed. This trick should not be
attempted until it has been thoroughly rehearsed.


Select the ace and five of hearts and two other cards of the same suit
and conceal the five behind one of the latter so as to make it appear
you have only three cards. Hold the two cards (with the concealed five)
faces down, a little distance apart and showing the ace place it
deliberately behind them so that the pip shows between (Fig. 2) when the
cards are held up. Having shown the cards in the latter position to the
company, lower them again and defy any one to lift up the ace. A member
of the company does so and naturally looks at the card, when you say,
"But you must not look at it. Take the card off and place it face down
on the table, and I will then tell you whether your attempt has been
successful. We will try again?" Re-arranging the cards, substitute the
five for the ace and place it so that the centre pip alone is visible
between the two cards. Repeat your challenge and request your friend to
remove the ace, place it on the table, and cover it with his hand. When
this is done ask him if he still has the ace, and he will naturally say
"Yes." Tell him to raise his hand, and to his astonishment he will find
the five.

                                Fig. 2.


Take any card from two to ten, say the five of hearts, and lay it face
down on the table without permitting any one to see its face. Then
announce your intention of examining a number of the company as to their
knowledge about cards. Ask for a volunteer, and on one consenting to act
tell him to answer your questions rapidly and to make his replies short.
Then put the following questions: "How many cards are there in a full
pack?" Answer, "Fifty-two." "How many suits?" "Four." "What are their
colours?" "Red and Black." "Now name one of those colours." "Red." If he
should say "black," you must say, "You select black so I take red. How
many suits are there in red?" "Two." "What are they?" "Hearts and
Diamonds." "Name one of those suits quickly." "Hearts." If he should
name diamonds say, "Then I take hearts." "How many cards in the suit?"
"Thirteen." "How many between the ace and knave?" "Nine." "How many
below six and how many above six?" "Four below and four above." "Name
either below or above?" "Below." If he says "above," say, "That gives me
those below six. What are the numbers below six?" "Two, three, four, and
five." "Name two of those numbers." "Four and five." If he should say
"two and three," or "three and four" you remark, "That leaves me four
and five. Name one of those numbers." If he says "four," you say, "Which
leaves five. The suit you selected was hearts, and now we have come down
to five. So you have actually selected the five of hearts; and I am sure
you will admit I have not influenced your choice in any way. Please turn
over the card on the table." He does so and, of course, finds it is the
five of hearts.


Select twelve cards of any suit, ace to ten and king and queen; arrange
them in a circle to represent the figures on the face of a clock, the
king as twelve and the queen as eleven (Fig. 3), and request a member of
the company to think of one of the numbers. You then explain you will
tap the cards with a pencil and he is to mentally add your first tap to
the number he thought of and count your succeeding taps until twenty is
reached, when he is to call "Stop," and your pencil will then rest upon
his number. For instance, we will suppose he thinks of twelve; he must
count your first tap as thirteen and continue counting mentally until
twenty is reached.

                                Fig. 3.

EXPLANATION.--Touch the cards at random during the first seven taps and
allow your pencil, on its eighth tap, to rest on the king (twelve).
Eight and twelve being twenty he will of course say "Stop." Supposing he
thought of a lower figure--seven, for instance. Tap at random as before
until your eighth tap, which must always be on twelve; then touch the
cards in rotation, making the queen your ninth tap, the ten your tenth
tap, nine your eleventh, and so on until you reach seven, which will be
your thirteenth tap, which number added to seven, the number thought of,
will make twenty, and your friend will say "Stop."

Another effective trick can be worked with the card dial, but it
requires the assistance of a confederate. Having previously instructed
him what to do, you tell the company that any one is at liberty to touch
one of the cards during your absence from the room, and on returning you
will indicate the card he has touched. Upon your returning hand a pencil
to your confederate and request him to touch the cards in rotation until
you say "Stop," when the pencil will rest on the right card. Your
confederate must hold the pencil in his right hand with his forefinger
resting on top. When he touches the right card he must raise that finger
slightly. It is a signal no one would notice, and the trick always
creates a great deal of wonder.


Allow the pack to be shuffled freely and then place it on the table face
down. Take the three top cards, and holding them up with their backs
towards you, ask some one to think of one. Then spread them face down on
the table in front of you. Take three more cards, and ask a second
person to think of one, and lay these on top of the other three. Show
three more cards to a third person, and after he has thought of one, lay
these on top of the others. You have now three parcels on the table,
each containing three cards. Hold up one parcel, and say to each person:
"Is the card you thought of in this lot?" Proceed in the same way with
the other parcels, and then tell each person the name of the card he
thought of. As the cards shown to the first person were laid on the
table first, it stands to reason that the cards he thought of must be at
the bottom of the parcel he has said "Yes" to; the second person's card
will be the middle one in the parcel, and the third person's the top


Select ten cards, regardless of suit, the ace, and from deuce to ten,
arranging them as follows: Lay the ten face down on the palm of your
hand, the nine next, and the others in rotation, finishing with the ace,
which you call "one." Give the cards so arranged to a friend, and tell
him you will leave the room while he moves cards one at a time, not to
exceed nine, from top to bottom, and when you return you will tell him
how many he has shifted. You may repeat this feat successfully several
times, and finish by requesting him to make up his mind how many cards
he intends moving before you leave the room and you will tell him which
card will indicate the number he has selected. On returning you
immediately refer him to the card which gives the correct answer. This
is really a most puzzling trick and yet an easy one to perform. Commence
by showing how the cards are to be moved by shifting a few yourself,
noting how many you move, so you will remember which card you leave at
the bottom. When you return to the room you subtract the number of pips
on that card from ten and the product will show the number of the card
from the top, the pips on which indicate the number of cards your friend
has moved. We will suppose that, in illustrating, you move four cards,
which will, of course, leave the four at the bottom; you subtract four
from ten, which leaves six, and no matter how many cards have been moved
the pips on the sixth from the top will indicate the number. Taking the
pack in your hand face downward, count off the first six cards, and
glancing at the sixth say, "You moved ---- cards." When you repeat the
trick add the number originally at the bottom to the number your friend
has moved, which will give the number now at the bottom, which you again
subtract from ten. In predicting the number of cards your friend means
to move you tell him the number of the card from the top which will show
it. We will suppose the bottom card is eight and your friend mentally
decides upon moving five cards, you subtract eight from ten, which
leaves two, and tell him the number he is going to move will be
indicated by the pips on the second card from the top after he has moved
the cards.


Spread six cards before a member of the company and ask him to think of
one. Place these cards at the bottom of the pack and give the latter a
"false shuffle," i.e. shuffle them in such a manner that the bottom
cards are not disturbed. Then take the four top cards, and spreading
them on the table, faces upward, ask your friend if his card is among
them. Of course, he will say "No." While he is looking at the cards on
the table "slip" (_Hercat's Card Tricks_, p. 10) one of the bottom cards
to the top of the pack. To do this moisten the tips of the two middle
fingers of the left hand, and holding the pack in that hand with the
moistened fingers against the face of the bottom card, with the thumb
and two middle fingers of the right hand raise the rest of the cards
slightly and the card adhering to the moistened fingers will be carried
to the top of the pack. Again spread the four top cards on the table and
repeat the enquiry. If he says "No," repeat the former process until he
says, "Yes, my card is in that lot." You, of course, know it is the card
you "slipped" from the bottom of the pack. You then tell him to gather
up all the cards and shuffle them thoroughly; then place the pack on the
table, put his hand over it and look you steadily in the eye. You place
your hand over his and say, "I can read your thoughts, you took the
----," naming his card. This is an easy trick to perform and causes
great amazement.


Select a king and the four knaves and lay the king on the table face
upward. Tell the company that the king is recruiting for the army and
accepts the knave of clubs, which you place on the king's right. The
knave of spades, which you place on the left, he rejects. The knave of
diamonds is accepted and placed on the right. The knave of hearts is
declined, and placed on the left.

Now ask your audience how it is that the king, being in want of
recruits, accepts two and refuses two.

The answer will puzzle those not acquainted with the trick. It is as
follows: Two of the knaves have but one eye each, and are consequently
medically unfit.


EFFECT.--A five-spot card is passed for examination, a two spot of the
same suit is then placed face down on the five; after rubbing the cards
slightly and separating them a spot is found to have passed from the
centre of the five on to the two spot, making a four spot and a three
spot. The pack is afterwards shown to be quite an ordinary one without
any apparent preparation.

PREPARATION.--Remove from the pack the five, four, three, and two of any
suit. Place the remainder of pack face down on the table. Now place the
five spot face up on the back of the pack, the two spot face down on the
five, the four face up on the back of the two, and the three spot face
down on the four. Then remove the three top cards, without in any way
altering their order, and place them on the face of the pack so that the
two spot is showing, and turn the five spot face down, so that the pack
appears to be without preparation.

PRESENTATION.--Show pack held in left hand and call special attention to
the two spot on the bottom of the pack, then lift off the five-spot card
and pass it to a spectator with the remark that the centre spot is loose
and can be transferred at will to any other card; while the card is
being examined you secretly count off the three other prepared cards at
the bottom of the pack and keep them separated from the rest with the
index finger of left hand. Now take back the five-spot card and place it
on the back of the pack, with its face side toward audience. Then with
the first two fingers and thumb of right hand take the three other cards
from bottom of pack and show them as one card only: namely, the two
spot. This movement is best executed by slightly pushing down the three
cards with the index finger of left hand until a sufficient amount of
projection is obtained for the fingers and thumb of right hand to grip.
Now place the apparent two-spot card face toward, and on to the five
spot; proceed by gently rubbing the back card with the index finger of
right hand, and lift the top card and show it to be a three spot, while
the card facing is found to be a four spot, which you also remove. The
back of the two-spot card will then be seen and the pack appear to be an
unprepared one.


PRESENTATION.--First secretly note what the top card of the pack is.
Then proceed by asking a spectator to state what card he wishes you to
use by giving you a number. After having received the number you proceed
to count the cards face down on to a table until you reach that number,
at the same time mentioning that the last card counted is the one you
are to use. You pause for a moment, apparently thinking, then say, it is
possible that the spectator may think that you already know the card as
you counted them yourself, you consider that it would only be fair to
allow him to count them himself. At the same time you replace the
counted cards, and hand the pack to spectator, with the request that he
counts down to the number previously stated. This, of course, has the
effect of bringing the known top card into position at his number, so
that it is quite an easy matter to follow on with any trick in which the
sleight-of-hand force is necessary. This seems very simple, but try the
effect; even our advanced friends will find it extremely useful.


REQUISITES.--An ordinary pack of cards and two extra cards stuck
securely together.

Place the double card below a previously noted card. Hold the pack in
the left hand so that the thumb can pass readily down the cards at the
upper corner. Now pass the thumb of the right hand down the cards so as
to ruffle them. You will find that the thumb is automatically stopped at
the double card. By requesting a spectator to take the card immediately
above the break in the pack, you can then proceed with any trick in
which a forced card is necessary. Numerous other uses for the double
card will readily occur to my readers from the hint given.


Place the pack face down on the table and cover it with a serviette.
Then request a member of the company to put his hand under the serviette
and take a card at random; to be careful not to let you see it but show
it to the company and then return it to the pack and to square the pack
through the serviette after the card has been replaced. You then lift up
the side of the serviette nearest to you and at once produce the card.

EXPLANATION.--When the company are looking at the card slip your hand
under the serviette and turn the pack over, and, of course, you can at
once detect the "faced" card when it is replaced. On withdrawing it with
your right hand turn the pack over with your left and lift off the



Place ten coins--say shillings--in any empty finger-bowl and request a
member of the company to select one, put a private mark on it, and then
holding it in his closed hand, to close his eyes and think of the
appearance of the coin very hard. In about a minute pick up the bowl,
and going to him, request him to open his eyes; gaze in them, and then
make a few mesmeric passes over his face. Then request him to drop the
coin he holds in the bowl and to mix it up thoroughly with the other
nine shillings. Now ask some one to blindfold you; when this is done
place your hand in the bowl, and picking up the shillings one at a time,
you can at once detect his, which you throw across the table to him for
confirmation. The secret is that the coin held in the person's hand has
obtained a certain degree of warmth and can at once be detected in


Sew a halfpenny in the corner of your handkerchief and place the latter
in your pocket ready for the trick. Borrow a shilling and request the
lender to put a private mark on it. Take out your handkerchief and
pretend to place the shilling under it, instead of which pick up the
corner containing the halfpenny, place it in the centre and grasp it
through the handkerchief with your left hand, while you let the marked
shilling drop in the palm of your right. Ask a member of the company to
hold the shilling (the halfpenny in the centre) in the handkerchief a
few inches above the table. Then pick up an empty glass with your right
hand, hold it under the table, and request the person who holds the
handkerchief to let it fall on the table. The coin in the handkerchief
will be heard to strike the latter and at the same time you drop the
shilling from the palm of your right hand into the glass and place the
latter on the table, while with your left hand you pick up the
handkerchief and shake it, being careful not to allow the halfpenny to
strike the table again while you are doing so. Request the person who
lent the shilling to take it out of the glass and say if it is the one
bearing his private mark.


Here is another simple trick with a sixpence. Put a small piece of wax
on it, and place it, the waxed side uppermost, in the centre of a
handkerchief. Then put one of the lower corners of the handkerchief over
the coin and ask some one to put his finger on it and press it. Then
move the second lower corner of the handkerchief over the other corner,
telling your assistant to move his finger while you do so. Next cover
the two lower corners with the two upper corners of the handkerchief in
the same manner, and ask your assistant if he is sure the sixpence is
still there. Of course he will say yes; he can feel it. Then tell him to
raise his finger. When he does so, take the two upper corners in your
hands, and raise the handkerchief, when the coin will appear to have
vanished. Of course, it is sticking to the lower corner of the


While sitting at the table turn up your right sleeve, and, taking a
half-crown or penny, rub it against your cheek, and then, as if by
accident, drop it on the table. Pick up the coin and repeat the process,
this time resting your elbow on the table, as you explain, to steady it.
Move your hand from your cheek, and the coin has disappeared, and with
your left hand produce it from your elbow. Then say, "I will reverse the
experiment and send the coin back." Place your empty hand against your
face and your left hand containing the coin under your elbow. After
rubbing your face and chin, show the coin again in your right hand and
your left hand empty. You require two coins for this trick, one palmed
in your left hand. When you rub the coin against your face the second
time, drop it inside your collar and produce the palmed coin from your
elbow. When you "reverse the experiment," take the coin from your collar
as you are rubbing your face and chin and drop the other coin from your
left hand into your handkerchief spread over your knees.


This trick requires considerable practice, but is a very effective one.
Take the two coins in your right hand, and throw them repeatedly, one at
a time, into the other hand until the audience begin to think it is a
"sell." Then, offering your left hand (in which the coins are supposed
to be) to some one, say: "Well, you try to do it." Open your hand, and
the coins have disappeared.

EXPLANATION.--The last time you throw only one half-crown, and instead
of throwing the second, bring the right hand down quickly, and at the
same time jerk the coin in your left hand upwards into your right, and
it will strike the coin retained there. The clink will be heard, and by
closing your left hand quickly you will lead the company to suppose both
coins are in that hand. Half-crowns are the best coins for the trick
owing to their weight.


Request a member of the company (seated) to place a shilling or florin
upon each knee, and cover them with his hands with his fingers stretched
out. You then tell him, when you turn your back, to raise one of the
coins and tap his head with it twelve times just above his ear; then
replace it on his knee and cover it with his hands as before; and you
will tell him, on examining the coins, which one he raised.

The examination of the coins has really nothing to do with the trick.
All you have to do is to look at the person's hands; the blood leaves
the hand that has been raised, and when it is again placed beside the
other the difference in colour is most perceptible.

I have performed this trick hundreds of times in drawing-rooms, and it
has never been detected, but created great surprise.


Stick a halfpenny (or a shilling) under the edge of a table secretly
with a small piece of wax. Show another halfpenny to the company, and
when it is returned to you, place it in front of you on the table while
you turn up your sleeves. Then place the fingers of your left hand under
the table, and with your right hand sweep the halfpenny on the table
into your left, at the same time getting hold of the halfpenny under the
table, taking care that one coin does not strike the other. Then place
your right hand over your left, and pretend to rub the halfpenny the
audience have examined very vigorously, and, showing both coins, say you
have rubbed one halfpenny into two. You can improve on this trick by
using four halfpence on the table and one stuck under the edge. Sweep
two coins into your left hand, get possession of the stuck halfpenny,
and close your hand. Hold it up, and say: "There are two halfpennies on
the table, and I have two in this hand." Picking up the two halfpennies
with your right hand, tell the company that you intend to pass one of
them into the other hand. Then lay both hands flat on the table, lift
your left hand, and show three halfpennies under it. Slide your right
hand off the table, leaving one halfpenny behind, and carrying the
second coin away with your fingers. As your hand leaves the table, press
the halfpenny with your thumb against your two middle fingers, and nip
it with your first and little fingers. Remove your thumb, and you will
find you can hold it securely "palmed." Then with the right hand sweep
the three halfpennies back into the left hand, at the same time letting
the "palmed" coin fall with them. Close your fingers over them quickly,
and picking up the remaining halfpenny from the table with your right
hand, say: "I intend to make this halfpenny join its companions. One,
two, three--go!"

Pushing it with your thumb against your two middle fingers, palm it as
before, and throw the four coins which you hold in your left hand on the
table. While the attention of the company is on them, drop the "palmed"
coin in your pocket.


Procure two small apples exactly alike, and in the bottom of one scoop
out a hole large enough to hold a pile of three sixpences. Make a
conical cover out of cartridge paper large enough to cover the apple and
about nine inches in height. Obtain six sixpences, three of which place
in a pile on an inverted glass goblet. Conceal the other three and the
hollow apple in your left hand. Ask some one to examine the cover, and,
on receiving it back, transfer it to your left hand and slip it over the
apple. Then give the duplicate apple for examination, and, taking the
cover by its lower part, and the apple concealed in it, place both over
the three sixpences on the glass. Take the apple that has been examined,
and put it under the table with your left hand, hold it between your
knees, and say: "I command this apple to pass through the table and take
the place now occupied by the three sixpences, and the sixpences to fall
into my hand." Bring your left hand from under the table and show the
coins, lift up the cover and show the apple on the glass. Then reverse
the procedure. Cover the apple on the glass; place the three sixpences
under the table; secure the apple held between your knees and roll it on
the table; lift up the cover and hollow apple together, and, dropping
the latter into your lap, show the former is empty. This trick should be
performed sitting.


Place two half-crowns (or pennies) on the table and a sixpence between
them. Then cover the coins with an inverted wine-glass, the edges of the
latter resting upon the larger coins. Challenge any one to remove the
sixpence without touching the glass or the money. It is done very
easily, and in an amusing manner. You have only to scratch the
tablecloth with your finger-nail in the direction you wish the coin to
come, saying: "Come hither, sixpence," and it will at once obey you.


Cover the mouths of two glasses with newspaper, by gumming it on them,
and trim off the edges neatly.[A] Stand them inverted upon two pieces of
newspaper in such a manner that the type on the paper over the glasses
fairly corresponds with that on the paper on the table. Make two cones
of newspaper to fit closely over each glass. Unobserved by the company,
place a penny under the glass on your left, which will of course be
concealed by the paper on the mouth of the glass. Then borrow a penny,
and, placing the cone over the glass on your right, lift the latter
covered by the former from the table; lay the borrowed penny on the
newspaper, and cover with the glass and cone. You call attention to the
fact that there is nothing under the other glass, and you then cover it
with the second cone. You now tell the company that at your word of
command the penny will leave one glass and travel invisibly over the
table to the other glass. You lift the cone from the glass on your
right, under which the borrowed penny was placed, and the coin is not to
be seen. Then, lifting both the cone and glass together on your left,
the concealed penny is brought into view. You now announce your
intention of sending the penny back. Place the covered glass over the
penny and replace the cover over the glass on your right. "One, two,
three--go!" you exclaim and, lifting the cone off the glass on your
left, the penny under it appears to have disappeared, and on removing
the other glass, still covered by the cone, the borrowed penny will once
more be seen. This trick can be worked with one glass only and the penny
made to appear to drop through the table in your hand placed under the
latter ready to catch it (the penny, of course, being already palmed in
your hand); but the use of two glasses makes the trick more effective,
and it can be repeated many times without fear of detection. The paper
upon which the glasses stand can, of course, be examined; but the
glasses when removed from the paper must be covered with the cones, or
the paper cover on the mouth of each will be seen.

[A] This piece of apparatus neatly constructed can be obtained at a
trifling cost at any of Messrs. Hamley Bros.' Conjuring Depôts, London.


Borrow four shillings; place one on the palm of each hand, and, holding
the palms upward, close your fingers over them. Then request a member of
the company to place the other two coins on the nails of your two middle
fingers; and announce your intention of throwing a coin from one hand to
the other, explaining it is rather a difficult feat to accomplish with
your hands closed. Make one or two movements with your hands, and then,
as if accidentally, drop the two shillings resting upon your nails upon
the table. Apologising for your clumsiness, request some one to replace
the coins on your nails, saying you will have another try. Now give your
hands a jerk upward; open them and catch the coins on your nails, one in
each hand, and tell the company you have accomplished your purpose and
sent one coin flying invisibly through the air from one hand to the
other. To verify your assertion open your hands and show three coins in
one hand and only one in the other.


When you make the first attempt, and appear to fail, in the upward
movement of your hands you open them and allow the shilling resting upon
the nail of your left hand to slip into the palm, while you permit the
coin in the palm of your right hand to fall, with the one above it on
the nail, on the table. If this is done neatly the company will suppose
it is the two coins from the nails which have fallen. You now have two
shillings in your left hand and none in your right. In the second
attempt you have only to catch the shillings resting on your nails in
the manner described, and on showing one shilling in your right hand and
three in your left, your statement that one has travelled invisibly from
one hand to the other will appear to be correct.


Place ten halfpence in a row upon the table, then taking up any one of
the series, place it upon another, with this proviso, that you pass over
just two halfpence each time. Repeat this until there is not a single
halfpenny left. Let the following figures represent the halfpence:--

                          1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Place No. 4 upon No. 1; No. 7 upon No. 3; No. 5 upon No. 9; No. 2 upon
No. 6; and No. 8 upon No. 10. A little practice will enable the reader
to do this puzzle without referring to the figures.


Obtain three sixpences exactly alike, place one in your pocket and stick
the other two with a small piece of wax under the edge of the table
about an inch apart. After showing other tricks produce the sixpence
from your pocket and show it to the company to prove it is an ordinary
coin. Pull up your sleeves, and if the table has a cover turn it back.
Place the coin on the table near the edge over the concealed sixpences,
and showing your right hand is perfectly empty place your thumb over the
coin and rub it vigorously backwards and forwards on the table. At the
same time run your first and second fingers under the table, and
securing one of the coins sticking there move it and the coin under your
thumb simultaneously off the table, and pinching them together between
your thumb and finger, say: "I will show you how to double your capital.
I am going to rub this sixpence into two sixpences." Then showing your
other hand is empty use the left thumb and finger to assist in the
rubbing, and gradually separate the two coins and exhibit them. Then
putting the sixpence with the wax in your pocket place the other one
near the edge of the table and repeat the trick, saying: "See, I have
now trebled my capital." Do not allow the company to examine the waxed


Procure three coins (pennies or half-crowns) exactly alike. Scratch a
cross on two, and in the third bore a hole, in which fasten a short
piece of black elastic cord. The other end of the elastic tie round your
ankle, taking care that the coin does not hang below your trouser leg.
Put one of the marked pennies in your left-hand trousers pocket and drop
the other one unobserved into the pocket of some one present, or give it
to a confederate to hold. Commence by borrowing a similar coin to those
you are using and mark it like the others. Hold it between the thumb and
finger of the right hand, and, giving it a twist, spin it on the table,
then snapping your fingers over it, catch the edge of the coin and it
will fly up your sleeve. Close your hand and say, "I will make this coin
fly up my sleeve, travel round my back, and pass down my other sleeve."
In the meantime you have secured the penny in your pocket and concealed
it in your left hand. Open your right hand, showing it is empty, and
then show the penny in the other hand. Lower your right hand, the penny
in your sleeve will drop into it, and you can pocket it unobserved. Then
ask for the loan of a cap and walking-stick. Request some one to hold
the stick, while you hold the cap in your left hand. Pick up the penny
with your right hand and pretend to place it on the floor. In doing so
substitute the coin attached to the elastic, and, stretching the latter,
hold the coin on the floor while you cover it with the cap, and ask the
person who has the stick to place its end on the coin through the cap
and keep it there until you tell him to move it. Then say, "I command
this coin to leave the cap and pass into Mr. So-and-So's pocket. Move
the stick, please, and then lift up the cap." On the removal of the
stick the coin will fly under your trouser leg, and, of course, when the
cap is lifted it is no longer on the floor. On the person whose name you
mentioned putting his hand in his pocket he will find the coin you
placed there, which you return to the person from whom you borrowed the


EFFECT.--A coin dropped down the sleeve is slowly rubbed out through the
cloth at the elbow.

REQUISITES.--Two coins exactly alike.

PRESENTATION.--First secretly place one of the coins between the buttons
at the end of your left coat sleeve. Then stand with your right side
towards spectators with the left arm extended, but slightly bent at the
elbow. After having the coin examined, proceed to drop it down the
sleeve of the extended arm, when it will fall to the elbow, and ask a
spectator to feel that it is really there. Proceed by placing thumb of
right hand on the side of sleeve toward spectators, and the fingers at
the back, and rub the hand up and down the sleeve from the elbow to the
cuff, and at the same time secretly gain possession of the coin between
the buttons and bring it down behind the sleeve towards the elbow. Now
with a slow pinching movement bring the coin down between the thumb and
fingers and apparently out through the cloth of the sleeve, meanwhile
moving the left arm up and down slightly. The coin left in the sleeve
can be secretly got away by dropping the arm and allowing it to fall
into the hand and then pocketed.


Palm a halfpenny in your right hand and ask a friend (be sure he _is_
your friend) to lend you a shilling. Pick up a glass, invert it, and
place the borrowed shilling on its bottom. Then ask your friend whether
the coin is on the top or bottom of the tumbler. He will naturally look
surprised at such a question; and you then say,--"Ah, I see you know the
trick." Slide the shilling off the glass into your right hand, and as
your friend holds out his hand to receive it back, drop the concealed
halfpenny into it. The chances are ten to one that he will place the
coin in his pocket without glancing at it. Unless you really desire to
swindle your friend out of elevenpence halfpenny you will, of course,
explain to him how he has been "had."


Place seven coins on the table, five in a row and one above and one
underneath the centre coin. Then challenge any one to form a cross with
these coins by moving two only, all the arms of the cross to have the
same number of coins. After many attempts and failures show how easy it
is to accomplish by taking the two coins at the ends of the row and
placing them upon the coin in the centre.



Tie a single over-hand knot in a handkerchief, and holding it in your
left hand, give one end to some one, telling him to pull at a given
signal. As he is about to do so, slip your left thumb underneath and,
letting go the end hanging over your left hand, allow the handkerchief
to run between your thumb and forefinger, when it will come out without
any knot (Fig. 4).

                                Fig. 4.


Hold the handkerchief in both hands; give it a twist; blow on it, and a
knot instantly appears in its centre.

Hold the handkerchief as shown in Fig. 5.

                                Fig. 5.

Then while in the act of blowing on it bring the hands together quickly,
throw the end _a_, held in the right hand, between the two middle
fingers of the left hand and over _b_; at the same time grasp _b_
between the two middle fingers of the right hand (Fig. 6); pull _a_
under _b_ with the left hand and _b_ under _a_ with your right, and the
knot is made. With practice you will be able to do this imperceptibly.

                                Fig. 6.


Procure two candles and from one cut one-third off, in which piece drill
a hole lengthwise and remove the wick. Put this piece in your pocket and
place the other candle in a candlestick. Give a small piece of paper to
a member of the company and request him to write a short sentence on it.
Tear the paper in two, and giving him half, retain the other half
yourself, which you fold up. Have a similar piece of paper, folded,
concealed in your right hand, and as you turn to get the candle (which
should be lighted), substitute one for the other. Burn the plain piece
of paper in the candle, and obtaining the piece of candle from your
pocket put your hands behind your back, and, having rolled up the half
message, work it into the hole in the piece of candle. In order to gain
the time to do this stoop over the lighted candle and make several
unsuccessful attempts to blow it out. When the paper is in the piece of
candle give one good hard blow and extinguish the light. With the piece
of candle concealed in your left hand, take the candle out of the
candlestick, lay it on the table, and with a knife cut off the burnt
end, which throw away and divide the remainder into three equal parts.
Then ask the person who wrote the message to select one piece. When he
does so pick up the selected piece with your right hand and pretend to
transfer it to your left, but retain it in the right and show the piece
concealed in your left, which you present to the person who wrote the
sentence and request him to pull out the piece of paper, which he will
find to be the corresponding half of the piece in his possession.


Take a common ring, about the size of a wedding-ring, and suspend it to
the centre of your handkerchief by a piece of cotton four inches long.
You can hold the handkerchief up by the corners with the ring hanging in
front of you, and the latter will not be noticed. Then let the
handkerchief fall over your left hand and the ring in your palm. Request
the loan of a wedding-ring, and, having obtained one, put it under the
handkerchief, drop it in your palm, and pick up the other ring, which
push up in the centre of the handkerchief, requesting some one to hold
it there. Next take a drinking-glass in your right hand and request the
person to drop the ring in it and the handkerchief over it. Shake the
glass, and the ring will be heard to rattle inside. Then stand the glass
in the palm of your left hand with its bottom over the borrowed ring,
which is concealed there. With your right hand pinch the centre of the
handkerchief and lift it up quickly, of course, carrying the suspended
ring with it, being very careful not to let the ring strike the glass.
The glass is seen to be empty; lift it up and show the ring underneath.
Say, "You see, the ring has passed through the bottom of the tumbler."

A similar and a better trick can be performed with a short cane--say
about eighteen inches long--instead of a glass. Commence as in the
previous trick, and after you have asked some one to hold the suspended
ring through the handkerchief, show the cane, and, holding your left
hand back upward, push it through the latter and the borrowed ring, and
grasp the cane with, of course, the ring on it, in the centre. With your
right hand take the ring and handkerchief from the person who holds
them, and request him to take hold of each end of the cane. Now lower
the handkerchief until it hides your left hand, when you must move the
latter away, leaving the ring on the cane concealed by the handkerchief.
Then let the suspended ring fall out of the handkerchief, and if it
strikes the cane so much the better. Whip the handkerchief away, and the
ring on the cane will be seen. How that ring could have got on the cane
while the ends of the latter were being held will puzzle everybody.
Pocket the handkerchief with the suspended ring at once, and don't allow
it to be examined.



Every schoolboy knows the old puzzle: Think of a number; double it; add
10, divide by 2, subtract number thought of; and 5 left. Here is a great
improvement upon that problem, which I have seen puzzle some excellent

Think of a number; multiply by 3; if the result is odd, add 1 and divide
by 2; multiply by 3; if result be odd, add 1, and again divide by 2. By
how many 9's is the result divisible?

On receipt of that information you at once give the number thought of.
One of the most puzzling features of the trick is that no 9's are
obtainable in the result should either 1, 2, or 3 be thought of, as the
following will show:--

                     Number thought of   1   2   3
                           multiply by   3   3   3
                                        ---     ---
                                         3       9
                     Add                 1       1
                                        --- --- ---
                     Divide by 2         4   6  10
                                         2   3   5
                     Multiply by         3   3   3
                                            --- ---
                                             9  15
                     Add                     1   1
                                        --- --- ---
                     Divide by 2         6  10  16
                                         3   5   8

As will be seen, none of these results is divisible by 9, yet the number
thought of is correctly given in each instance.

SOLUTION.--When the number thought of is multiplied by 3, you ask the
question, "Is the result odd or even?" If the answer is "odd," make a
mental note of _one_; then proceed. "Add one and divide by two. Is the
result odd or even?" If the answer is again "odd," make a mental note of
_two_; and proceed. "Add one and divide by two. How many nines are
obtainable in the result? I do not want to know what the surplus is."

The above figures illustrate that when 1 is the number thought of there
is only an addition of 1. When 2 is the figure, no addition is required
to the first result; but the second result being 9, 1 is added and _two_
noted, which, of course, is the figure thought of. When 3 is thought of
two additions are necessary, one to the 9 and one to the 15, making a
total of _three_ to be remembered, which represents the original number.
When 4 or any succeeding number is thought of the final result is always
divisible by 9, and in your mental calculation each 9 must represent 4,
to which you add the figures you have previously noted.


Number thought of 4 × 3 = 12 ÷ 2 = 6 × 3 = 18 ÷ 2 = 9.

Here we have one 9, which represents 4, the number thought of.

Number thought of 7 × 3 = 21 + 1 = 22 ÷ 2 = 11 × 3 = 33 + 1 = 34 ÷ 2 =
17. From which is obtainable only one 9, which represents 4, to which
you add 1 for the first addition of 1, and 2 for the second addition,
making a total of 7, the number thought of.

Number thought of,

                         ×   3
                         +   1  note 1
                       ÷ 2  34
                         ×   3
                         +   1  note 2
                       ÷ 2  52
                            26  two 9's = 8 = 11


Request a member of the company to write a row of figures, the number of
which is immaterial, add them together and subtract the addition from
the row. Then to cross out any figure from the result, add the remaining
figures together and give you the total, when you will tell him which
figure he has erased. Of course, you do not see his figures and can
leave the room while he makes them.


                                567219 = 30
                             -      30

We will suppose he crosses out 7, which makes the addition of the row,
minus that figure, 29. He gives you that result and you at once name the
crossed off figure. There are two ways of arriving at the answer. The
simplest and quickest way is to add the units in the result together
until only one figure remains and deduct it from 9. For instance, we
will take 29. Add the 2 and 9 together, which make 11; add 1 and 1
together and you have 2, which deduct from 9, leaving 7, the figure
erased in the above example.

Supposing 1 was the figure erased, the addition of the remaining figures
would then be 35; 3 + 5 = 8, 9 - 8 = 1, the figure crossed off.

The second method is to reckon the next multiple of 9 above the figures
given you; for instance, supposing they are 29, the next multiple of 9
is 36. Deduct 29 from it and it leaves 7, the erased figure. If either 9
or 0 is erased the result is the same. You can get out of the
difficulty, on being told you are wrong, by saying (in case you have
given 9), "Yes, I see it is a nought; I thought it had a tail, so
mistook it for a nine." If you have named 0 and it turns out to be 9,
you can say, "Oh, I didn't notice the tail; of course I should have said


Request a friend to write the following figures:--

                            1 2 3 4 5 6 7 9

Take the paper from him and, after pretending to scrutinise the row, ask
him to point out which figure he considers most imperfectly made. If he
should select the 1, say, "You had better practise making that figure.
Oblige me by multiplying the row by nine." When he does so the result
will be

                           1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1

Then say, "After this practice you will be able to make better ones in

If he selects the 4 request him to multiply by 36 and the result will be

                           4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4

Whichever figure he selects, mentally multiply it by 9 and request him
to multiply the row by the result. If he thinks 9 the most imperfectly
made figure, you, of course, tell him to multiply by 81 and the result
will be all 9's.


How can four 9's be written so that they will make 100?


                                 99 9/9


Ask some one to start a sum in addition by writing the top line of four
figures. We will suppose he writes 1912. You mentally subtract the 2 and
place it before the 1, making 21,910, which figures write on a piece of
paper, which you fold up and lay on the table. You then ask a second
person to place four figures under the first line. Then add a line
yourself, which must be a deduction of the second line from four 9's.
Ask a third person to add four figures to those already written. Then
add another line yourself, making it a deduction of the third person's
figures from four 9's. Request a fourth person to add up the sum and
tell him you have already done so, and he will find the answer on the
table. The sum will appear something like this:--


Which answer corresponds with the figures on the paper, which has been
on the table the whole time. If you have in the company two friends upon
whom you can rely as confederates, previously arrange with them to write
the third and fifth lines, explaining to them that they must deduct the
line immediately preceding theirs from 9's and make their lines the
products. This adds greatly to the mystery of the trick.


Take 9 from 6; from 9 take 10, and from 40 take 50, and you will find 6


                      FROM SIX | FROM IX | FROM XL
                      TAKE  IX | TAKE  X | TAKE  L
                           S   |      I  |      X


Thirteen commercial travellers arrived at an inn, and each desired a
separate room. The landlady had but 12 vacant rooms, which may be
represented thus:--

          | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 |

But she promised to accommodate all according to their wishes. So she
showed two of the travellers into room No. 1, asking them to remain a
few minutes together. Traveller No. 3 she showed into room No. 2,
traveller No. 4 she showed into room No. 3, traveller No. 5 into room
No. 4, traveller No. 6 into room No. 5, and so on until she had put the
twelfth traveller into Room No. 11. She then went back to where she had
left the two travellers together, and asking the thirteenth traveller to
follow her, led him to No. 12, the remaining room. Thus all were
accommodated. Ask your friends to explain the mystery.


Girls of a marriageable age do not like to tell how old they are, but
you can find out by following the subjoined instructions, the young lady
doing the figuring: Tell her to put down the number of the month in
which she was born, then to multiply it by 2, then to add 5, then to
multiply it by 50, then to add her age, then to subtract 365, then to
add 115, then tell her to tell you the amount she has left. The two
figures to the right will tell you her age and the remainder the month
of her birth. For example, the amount is 822, she is twenty-two years
old and was born in the eighth month (August).


Tell a friend that you will race him in counting from 1 to 100, and
guarantee to win, under the following conditions: You will allow him to
start first, at any number from 1 to 10, and you are both to have the
privilege of adding any figure up to 10 to the last number called. For
instance, we will suppose he starts with 5. You call 15, having mentally
added 10 to his number. He then calls 20, having added 5; and so on,
until 100 is reached. Until he sees through the trick you will win every
time, and even then you will win if you start first and commence at 1.
In that case, as he can only add 10, his first call could not exceed 11,
to which you immediately add 1 and call 12. If his next call is 22, you
say 23. No matter what his additions may be, the numbers you must always
reach first are 12, 23, 34, 45, 56, 67, 78, and 89. When you call the
latter number, as he can only add 10 to it, your next call will, of
course, be 100. By this you will observe that, although you can only add
10 to your opponent's last number, you in reality add 11 to your own. So
you are, so to speak, always 1 ahead of him. If, when you suggest the
trick, you see your friend is not familiar with it, you can give him the
option of starting first, and you need not pick up the thread of your
winning numbers until you reach 50, adding low numbers to his additions,
which will help to puzzle him; but he will soon see that it is necessary
to reach 89; then he will notice you strike 78 and 67. When you see he
is getting on the right track, pick up the winning numbers earlier, and
at last insist that you must now start first. In starting with a person
who does not know the trick it is advisable, and more puzzling, to dodge
about at first and not get on the track of the winning numbers until 56
or 67. But if your friend knows the trick and starts at 1 you cannot
beat him. I have seen good accountants puzzle for hours over this little
trick, which was invented by Mr. William Lawtey, a dear old friend of


Request your friend to make up his mind as to the time he intends to
rise on the following morning, and then to mention an entirely different
hour to you. To the latter you mentally add twelve, and giving him the
number of the total, request him to look at his watch, and starting at
the hour preceding the one he has selected for rising, to count
backwards until he reaches the number you have given him, beginning with
the number which he previously gave you. Ask him to state the hour at
which he stops, which he will find is the one he selected for rising.
For instance; supposing your friend intends to rise at nine and gives
you four. To four you mentally add twelve and request him to start at
the hour before his getting-up time (which would be eight) and count
sixteen backwards on the face of the watch, starting with the number he
gave you--four--and when he reaches sixteen his finger or pencil will
rest upon nine, the hour he selected for getting up.



Lay ten matches side by side (Fig. 7) and request some one to lift each
match singly, and passing it over two matches, cross a third match with
it until there are five crosses on the table (Fig. 8). Two matches (and
only two whether crossed or single) must be passed over at a time.

                      1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10
                      |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |
                      |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |
                      |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |  |
                                Fig. 7.

                        \ /  \ /  \ /  \ /  \ /
                         \    \    \    \    \
                        / \  / \  / \  / \  / \
                                Fig. 8.

The secret is that No. 1 must be crossed first and No. 9 second, or the
trick cannot be accomplished.

The following are the correct moves: 4 over 2 and 3 and crossed on 1; 6
over 7 and 8 and crossed on 9; 8 over 7 and 5, crossed on 3; 2 over the
3 and 5, crossed on 7; the 10 over the 9 and 7, crossed on 5.


Make the figure 9 with a long tail with matches (Fig. 9) and tell a
member of the company to think of a number, which must exceed the number
of matches in the tail; and, commencing at the first match in the
latter, count mentally round the figure, stop when he reaches the number
thought of, and then, recommencing at the match he stopped at, count the
reverse way, this time avoiding the tail, and continuing on the upper
part of the 9 until he again reaches the number he selected, when you
will point to the match he has stopped at. This you can do very easily,
for if there are seven matches in the tail he will, of course, stop at
the seventh match on the left from the tail, as will be seen by the
numbering on the diagram, which assumes he thought of fifteen. Each time
the puzzle is tried vary the length of the tail by taking some matches
out of the latter and adding them to the upper part of the figure, or
vice versa. If this is not done the stop will always be made at the same
match, which will give the trick away.

                                Fig. 9.


Make three equilateral triangles with six matches. Of course, two can be
made with five matches; but then there is one over, and how to make a
third triangle with only one match is a puzzler. It is as easy as
possible. Make a triangle with three matches, and stand the other three
upon end inside the triangle in the form of a tripod (Fig. 10).

                                Fig. 10.

Here is another triangular puzzle. With five matches form two
equilateral triangles. Tell the company they are to remove three
matches; then add two and make two more equilateral triangles. This is
only a "sell." You do not say where the two matches are to be added. You
add them to the three removed, and form the same figure over again (Fig.

                                 / | \
                                /  |  \
                                \  |  /
                                 \ | /
                                Fig. 11.


Make nine squares with twenty-four matches (Fig. 12). Then request some
one to remove eight matches, and without touching those left, to leave
two perfect squares.

                                -- -- --
                               |  |  |  |
                                -- -- --
                               |  |  |  |
                                -- -- --
                               |  |  |  |
                                -- -- --
                                Fig. 12.

Fig. 13 shows the solution.

                                -- -- --
                               |        |
                               |  |  |  |
                               |        |
                                -- -- --
                                Fig. 13.


Place twenty-five matches in a row on the table. Request some one to
select one end of the row and to take one, two, or three matches from
it, you having the same privilege at the other end; and you guarantee he
will be compelled to take the last match no matter how he may vary the
number he takes.

The secret is to remove four matches each time between you. For
instance, if your opponent takes three you take one; if he takes two you
take two; if he takes one you take three and so on. It is obvious if
four matches are taken six times one match will be left on the table,
which your opponent must take.


Lay five matches on the table and request a member of the company to
form a well-known quotation from Shakespeare by the addition of three
more matches (Fig. 14). "But," some one will say, "how does KINI
represent a Shakespearean quotation?" Your reply is obvious: "Can't you
see KINI is 'a little more than kin, but rather less than kind'?"

                         | /  |    |\   |    |
                         |/   |    | \  |    |
                         |\   |    |  \ |    |
                         | \  |    |   \|    |
                                Fig. 14.


Place five matches on the table and challenge any one to make them into
thirteen without breaking any of them, and then, without moving them, to
make eight by the use of a card. The solution will be found in Fig. 15.

                              \ /  |  |  |
                               \   |  |  |
                              / \  |  |  |
                                Fig. 15.

To make eight, hide the lower half of the row from sight, and it of
course shows viii.


Place six matches on the table and request a person to add five more in
such a manner as to make nine. The solution is shown in Fig. 16.

                    |\   |    |    |\   |    |
                    | \  |    |    | \  |    |_____
                    |  \ |    |    |  \ |    |
                    |   \|    |    |   \|    |_____
                                Fig. 16.


At a certain school were four long dormitories, built in the form of a
square, in which thirty-two boys occupied beds, as shown by matches in
Fig. 17.

                            ||||  ||||  ||||

                            ||||        ||||

                            ||||  ||||  ||||
                                Fig. 17.

By this arrangement the master, in going his rounds at night, counted
twelve boys in each corridor. One night four boys absented themselves
from the school, and the remaining boys rearranged themselves in such a
manner that the master was still able to count twelve boys in each
corridor, and the absence of their four comrades was not noticed. How
they did it is shown in Fig. 18.

                            |||||  ||  |||||

                             ||          ||

                            |||||  ||  |||||
                                Fig. 18.

The four absentees returned on the following night, accompanied by four
friends; but the master was unable to notice the addition, for he again
counted twelve boys in each dormitory. The new arrangement was as Fig.

                             |||  ||||||  |||

                            ||||||      ||||||

                             |||  ||||||  |||
                                Fig. 19.

There were now thirty-six boys sleeping in the dormitories, and next
night they were joined by four more, which brought the number up to
forty, and yet the master only counted twelve in each dormitory on his
rounds that night. How the new distribution was made is shown in Fig.

                          ||   ||||||||   ||

                       ||||||||        ||||||||

                          ||   ||||||||   ||
                                Fig. 20.

Next night four more chums popped in for a snooze, making a total of
forty-four, and again the master was bamboozled by the following
readjustment (Fig. 21).

                          |   ||||||||||   |

                     ||||||||||        ||||||||||

                          |   ||||||||||   |
                                Fig. 21.

History is silent upon the subject of the arrangement at the

The proper way to present this puzzle to your friends is to lay
forty-four matches on the table, and after showing the initial
arrangement, allow them to work the rest out for themselves.


Arrange fourteen matches as in Fig. 22, and tell your friends to take
away any three matches they may select without disturbing the others,
and replace one in any position they may choose in such a way as to show
what matches are made of. They will endeavour to form the word "wood";
but Fig. 23 gives the correct solution.

                      -----   -----          -----
                     |     | |     | \    / |     |
                     |     | |     |  \  /  |     |
                     |     | |     |   \/   |     |
                      -----   -----          -----
                                Fig. 22.

                              -----          -----
                     |       |     | \    / |
                     |       |     |  \  /  |-----
                     |       |     |   \/   |
                      -----   -----          -----
                                Fig. 23.


Arrange eight matches as shown in Fig. 24, and state that this
enclosure, formed by eight hurdles, is supposed to hold one hundred
sheep. Ask your friends how many more hurdles would be required to
enable the enclosure to contain two hundred sheep? The reply is
generally eight more, and your friends will be surprised to learn that
only two more hurdles are required--one at each end across the
enclosure. Three hurdles being moved to admit of the introduction of the
additional two, the pen will, of course, be doubled in size.

                          -----  -----  -----
                         |                   |
                         |                   |
                         |                   |
                          -----  -----  -----
                                Fig. 24.


Put the following question to the company: Supposing there was a tunnel
through a hill and a post and rail fence was constructed through it, and
another fence was made exactly above it, over the hill, how many more
posts would be required for the latter route, supposing they were the
same distance apart by both routes?

After several calculations have been made you can astonish the company
by telling them that exactly the same number of posts would be required
for both routes, which you can prove by making a rough sketch of the
diagram, Fig. 25, and placing matches on it to represent the posts.

                                Fig. 25.



Procure an egg, an apple, an orange, and two dozen nuts. Place the
latter on a plate, and request three persons during your absence from
the room to each pocket one of the three former, asserting that you will
eventually state in whose pockets the different articles are to be
found. On returning to the room present to one of the persons you have
asked to assist you one nut, to a second person two nuts, and to the
third three nuts, which will of course leave eighteen nuts on the plate.
You must mentally name the person to whom you gave one nut "number one,"
to the person holding two nuts "number two," and the one who has three
nuts "number three."

Announce your intention of again leaving the room, and request your
three assistants to help themselves during your absence to nuts as
follows--the one holding the apple to take the same number of nuts you
presented him with, the one who has the egg to twice as many as you gave
him, and the holder of the orange to four times as many as he originally

Impress on them that the number of nuts they take must be _in addition_
to those they already hold.

On returning to the room you glance at the nuts remaining in the plate
and at once call for the egg, apple, and orange from their respective


You must memorise the following Latin words: Attento, Beato, Cantores,
Erocat, Fortasse, Glossema, numbering them 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7. The
initials of these words, it will be observed, are the first six letters
of the alphabet, omitting D, which is not required; A, of course,
standing for Apple, E for Egg, and O for Orange.

On returning to the room after your second absence count the number of
nuts remaining on plate, refer to the Latin words, and you have the key.
Supposing there are only two nuts left, take the second word, Beato, and
reject the consonants, when the vowels will remain in proper order, E,
A, O. The E being first shows the egg is in the pocket of the person
whom you have designated as "number one." The A being second indicates
"number two" has the apple, and the O, the third letter, means "number
three" holds the orange.

Supposing there are seven nuts left, take the seventh word, Glossema,
reject the consonants as before, and pick out the vowels, O, E, A, which
proves "number one" person holds the orange, "number two" the egg, and
"number three" the apple, and so on with the other Latin words, the
remaining number of nuts always indicating the word from which you are
to select the vowels. This trick may be repeated _ad lib._ without fear
of detection.


Obtain a piece of tape, or string, about three feet in length and tie
the ends; pass this loop through a serviette ring and the ends of the
loop over the thumbs of a friend (Fig. 26).

                                Fig. 26.

Take hold of the tape with your left forefinger at A and pull it forward
and down; with your right forefinger pull the tape at B, from
underneath, forward and upward, which will cause the two parts to cross
each other. Then with your right forefinger and thumb place the tape B
over the thumb D; move the ring toward D and with your right forefinger
and thumb take the tape at C from underneath and carry it also over the
thumb D. Take hold of the ring and pull it gently, as you slip your left
forefinger out of the loop A, when it will at once be released without
the tape leaving either thumb.


Give a person two half-crowns and request him to hold them horizontally
between the tips of his thumb and finger of his right hand, the coins
touching each other. Then request him to drop the lower coin in his left
hand and you will tell him which side will come uppermost. First note
which side of the coin is underneath when you place them in position,
for that will be the uppermost side when it reaches his left hand. The
lower coin will turn completely over in the act of falling: nothing can
prevent it. The distance between the hands should be from fourteen to
sixteen inches.


Hold a pair of scissors on the first two joints of your little fingers
with your palms upward, their blades pointing to the floor (Fig. 27).
Then throw the points over toward you, turning your hands at the same
time and bringing your knuckles back to back, the scissors standing out
straight from you (Fig. 28).

                                Fig. 27.

                                Fig. 28.

I have never seen any one accomplish this simple feat until they learned
the secret. When you throw the scissors over on the palms of your hands,
with their points toward your chest, allow the blades to rest there for
an instant with the tips of your little fingers touching your palms
through the scissors' bows; then bring the backs of your fingers
together with your hands closed and the points of the scissors outward.
The uninitiated, instead of allowing the bows to slip to the points of
the little fingers, hold them tight on the second joints and, of course,


This trick consists of fastening the scissors securely to the back of a
chair with a piece of string and then removing them without cutting or
untying the string. First make a loop of a piece of string about two
feet in length and pass the double end through one of the bows and the
two loose ends through the loop and pull tight. Next pass the two single
ends through the other bow of the scissors and tie them to the back of
the chair. The puzzle is how to remove them, which is simple enough when
you know how. Loosen the loop and draw it upwards and pass it through
the other bow, and then over both bows and points, when the scissors
will be free.


Take three cigarette papers, fold one up into a very small square, and
paste it lightly on the top right corner of the second paper. The third
paper roll lengthwise, and conceal it in your ear. Show the first paper
between both thumbs and fingers, your right thumb on the pasted corner,
then proceed to tear it up into squares, placing the pieces in front of
each other before tearing again. When it is in pieces about the size of
the pasted square, under the shelter of your left hand, with its back to
the audience, separate the pieces from the square and hold the latter up
between your right thumb and finger. Then, pretending to moisten your
left forefinger on your tongue, slip the pieces in your mouth and
conceal them there, and carefully unfold the square held in the other
hand, when the paper will appear to have been restored. You then roll
the paper length wise, and say, "I will swallow it." Put it in your
mouth and pretend to do so. Putting your left hand to your ear, say, "I
will now reproduce from my ear." Pull out the paper concealed there very
carefully, and as you turn to lay it on your table allow the pieces in
your mouth to drop into your hand.


With a needle and strong thread take a stitch of about half an inch in
its side, leaving several inches of the thread hanging from where you
puncture it. Reinserting the needle in the hole it made coming out, take
another stitch of half an inch, and again reinsert the needle where it
came out. Take similar stitches all round the apple until the needle
comes out of the first hole made, and then cross the two ends of the
thread and pull them steadily until all the thread comes out of the
hole. The apple is now cut through, although the skin does not show it.

Slip this apple in your pocket, and during dessert select an apple as
much like the prepared one as possible. Having previously placed your
serviette over your knees, with the prepared apple in it, drop the apple
just selected and pick up the former with your right hand while you turn
your plate over with your left hand. Putting the apple on its side on
the inverted plate, laying your forefinger on the apple you give the
former a smart blow with your right fist, when the apple will fall in
two pieces.


Take a full set of dominoes--twenty-eight pieces--turn them face
downward on the table; shuffle them thoroughly; then tell the company to
turn them over and match them in the ordinary way, while you take a seat
at the other end of the room with your back to the table. They can
blindfold you if they wish. As soon as all the pieces are matched you
call out the numbers shown at the two ends of the row. Return to the
table, turn the dominoes over again, shuffle them as before with the
right hand; again turn your back, and call out the end numbers. You can
repeat this any number of times without detection, unless some one
should count the pieces and find only twenty-seven. Each time you have
shuffled them you have dropped a piece concealed in your right hand, and
extracted and palmed another. One piece taken from a set of dominoes
invariably indicates by its numbers the numbers at the two ends of a row
when the pieces are all properly matched.


Ask some one to tie your wrists together with a handkerchief, and then
to pass a cord between your arms behind your tied wrists, and hold the
ends securely. Have towel or cloth thrown over your hands, and after a
very brief interval tell the person who holds the ends of the cord to
pull. When he does so, the latter will pass from your hands and fall on
the floor. You remove the cloth, and show that your wrists are still
tied together.

EXPLANATION.--When your hands are covered, move your elbows out, which
will separate your wrists, push the second finger of your right hand
between them, and with it pull the bight of the cord through the bandage
round your wrists, slip it over one hand, and when your assistant pulls
the cord it will pass off clear of your hands.


Screw three cigarette papers up into pellets and cover each of them with
a folded serviette. Then lift the serviette on your right with your left
hand (to show that the pellet is still there) and transfer it to your
right, holding it with your thumb on top and fingers underneath, and
re-cover the pellet. As you do this nip the pellet between the tips of
your first and second fingers in such a way that it does not show in
front of them as you withdraw your hand palm upwards. Then raise the
centre serviette with your left hand, transfer it to your right, as
before, and re-cover the pellet, and as you do so, drop the pellet
concealed between your fingers under it. Then raise the third serviette
with your left hand, transfer it to your right, re-cover the pellet,
and, in doing so, nip the latter between your fingers, as you did the
first one. Then say: "There are three pellets on the table covered by
serviettes. I command the one here (pointing to the one on your left) to
travel invisibly to the centre serviette." Turn the serviette over, and
show the pellet has gone. Then lift the centre serviette with your left
hand, and show the two pellets under it. Transfer it to your right hand,
and, in replacing it, drop the concealed pellet. Then say: "We have now
two pellets under the centre serviette, and one under this one"
(pointing to the one on your left). "I command this one to join its
fellows." Lift the serviette as you speak, and show the pellet has gone;
lift up the centre serviette, and the three pellets will be found


This is a variation of the previous trick. Roll up five cigarette papers
into pellets. Conceal one at the root of the left thumb, and form a
square with the others on the table. Show your hands empty (the
concealed pellet will not be observed if properly held), and cross your
hands over the pellets on the table. With the tips of your right fore
and second fingers nip one of the pellets on your left, and at the same
time drop the pellet concealed in your left hand between the two on your
right. Move both hands away quickly, and one of the pellets on your left
will appear to have travelled invisibly under your right hand. Again
cross your hands, passing your right hand under the left, and as you do
so drop the pellet concealed between your fingers, covering it at once
with the left hand. Then nip the remaining pellet with your right first
and second fingers, as before, and, on lifting your hands, all four
pellets will appear on your right. You can get rid of the remaining
pellet by dropping it on the floor, or on your lap if you are sitting at
the table.


This effect is practically unknown to the Western Conjurer, but has been
one of the stock-in-trade among magicians in India for years. It
involves a principle (that of transfer) which is capable of extensive
development in the use of modern magic.

REQUISITES.--(1) A piece of brittle unglazed earthenware. (A piece of
substance akin to thin flowerpot is used in India.) (2) A stick of
specially prepared soft charcoal.

A piece of earthenware is given, upon which a spectator is requested to
write his initials with a piece of charcoal supplied. The correct
preparation of this charcoal was conveyed to me by a Hindoo, and is as
follows: Procure a piece of boxwood or beech, the former for preference,
place it in the fire until reduced to a red glowing mass, remove it with
tongs and immediately place it into a thick jar and cover up very
tightly till cool.

The earthenware is taken by the performer and crushed up under his heel.
The spectator is then asked to wave his right hand over the broken
pieces, and upon the palm being turned upwards the absolute initials in
all detail are found imprinted upon his hand.

PRESENTATION.--Hand the piece of earthenware to the spectator, together
with the charcoal; request that his initials shall be written on the
earthenware in a space marked the size of the tip of the index finger.
After this has been done, you take it back between the thumb and index
finger of the right hand, the finger over the initials exerting a firm
pressure which has the effect of transferring the writing to the latter.
Then place the earthenware under your heel and crush it.

Now request the spectator to wave his right hand over the pieces. After
this has been done for a few seconds, boldly take hold of the hand (your
index finger firmly pressing upon its palm) and suggest that the hand is
not quite over the pieces, suiting the action to the word by slightly
pulling the hand forward; this has the effect of re-transferring the
reversed initials on to the spectator's palm, to be discovered a little
later upon the hand being turned over.


EFFECT.--A match apparently thrown away persists in reappearing in
closed hand.

REQUISITES.--A box of ordinary safety matches, together with an extra
match top, broken off about half an inch long.

PRESENTATION.--First conceal the extra match top between the tips of the
index and second finger of the right hand. Now give the box of matches
to a spectator, and request that the tops of three of the matches be
broken off about half an inch long and handed to you. You then place
these upon the table and proceed to pick them up one at a time with the
right hand, and throw them into the left (each time closing that hand)
as follows: The first is thrown in quite fairly, the second one is also
thrown in but is secretly accompanied by the one which you have
previously concealed at the finger-tips, the third one you pick up and
apparently throw away, but really retaining it at the finger-tips as
above mentioned. You now open the left hand and throw three match tops
on to the table instead of the supposed two; apparently the one thrown
away has secretly travelled back to the left hand. This trick can be
repeated about three times without fear of detection, as you always have
a fourth match top in readiness at the finger-tips. Properly worked it
proves a very bewildering little trick.


	Of the Egyptian Hall, Queen's Hall, Shaftsbury Theatre,
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List of changes from the printed edition (in parentheses the original

  p. 5: "Hindu" changed to "Hindoo" to match the text (A Hindu Swindle)

  p. 7: "--a Laughable Trick" added to Contents entry. (The Rejected

  p. 8: question mark added to Contents entry. (What are Matches Made

  p. 8: changed "of" into "in" in Contents entry. (An Experiment of

  p. 9: "someone" changed to "some one". (request someone to select a

  p. 20: closing quote removed. (Which leaves five." The suit)

  p. 22: "anyone" changed to "any one". (that anyone is at liberty)

  p. 24: closing quote added. (You moved ---- cards. When you)

  p. 29: word "a" added. (requesting spectator)

  p. 30: duplicated "the" removed. (pick up the the bowl)

  p. 35: "someone" changed to "some one". (Ask someone to examine)

  p. 44: missing period added. (Fig 4)

  p. 49: "multiply" changed to "divide". (add 10, multiply by 2)

  p. 51: added missing minus sign in the displayed subtraction. (30)

  p. 52: period changed to comma (3 + 5 = 8. 9 - 8 = 1)

  p. 67: missing period added. (Fig 25)

  p. 72: "scissor's" changed into "scissors'" (the scissor's bows)

  p. 73: changed hyphen into space. (CIGARETTE-PAPER) (cigarette-papers)

  p. 82: "Eves'" changed into "Eve's". (Two of Eves' Daughters)

  p. 84: missing "l" added. (Ludgate Hi l)

  p. 84: missing "i" added. (H gh Holborn)

... and some apparently missing or hardly visible periods and slashes
added in the advertisement pages.

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