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TitleHeller's Book of Magic Tricks
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Total Pages43
Document Text Contents
Page 1

Magic and its Mysteries
Explained and Illustrated

Electronic Edition
� 2003 José Antonio González



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Page 2

Chapter I.

Brief but all-important Hints.
Conjuring Tables.
Conjuring Dress.
Conjuring Wands.
The Pass.

Chapter II.

The Magic Halfpenny Box.
The Magic Marble Pedestal.
The Mystic Money-Box.
The Magic Telegraph Box.
The Barber’s Pole.
The Marvellous Shower of Sweets.
The Wizard’s Egg and Mystic Bag.
The Great Nose and Twine Trick.
The Magic Funnel
The Mysterious Glass of Ink.

Chapter III.

The Changing and Burning Card Box.
The Mystic Bran Glass.
The Mysterious Counter Pedestal.
Mouchoir du Diable, or The Demon
The Dissolving Pile of Halfpence.
The Magic Dissolving Pack of Cards.
The Wonderful Rattle Box.
The Mysterious Candle and Bewitched
The Enchanted Card and Rose.
The Mystic Family.

Chapter IV.

Forcing Packs of Cards.
The Biseatté Pack of Cards.
Magic Spring Balls.
Magic Spring Babies.
The Mystic Fruit-Knife.
The Magic Birth of Flowers.
The Magic Flowers and Mysterious
The Magic Millet Bell and Bushel of Seed.
The Magic Hammer and Ball.
The Mystic Sweet Wand.
The Mystic Money-Plate.
The Goblets and Hat Trick.

Chapter V.

The Mysterious Glass Casket.
The Magic Canister.
The Great Sack Trick.
The Dissolving Flag and Candle.
The Dissolving Egg and Handkerchief
The Mysterious Bran Bottle.
The Passe-Passe Bottle.
The Inexhaustible Bottle.
The Mysterious Ladle of Fire.
The Mysterious Watch Mortar.
The Mysterious Card Table.


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The lid is made to slide in, and the end is made with a ledge, which comes flush with the
false bottom, so that till this is pushed right in there is an opening which admits of any
coin falling out into the hand. The coin being placed in the box, the performer holds it in a
slanting position as he pushes in the lid, when tim money slips out unseen into his palm.
Having thus obtained possession of the coin, the box is quite closed, and the metal inside
made to rattle to assure the audience the money is still within. All that now remains for the
performer to do is to suffer the coin to drop into the pocket of some quiet-looking old
gentleman as he walks to his table, and then by his mystic influence to pretend to cause the
coin to pass from the one locality to the other.

The Mysterious Candle and Bewitched Handkerchief

A borrowed handkerchief is burnt to ashes in a candle, the candle is then placed in an
empty case, from which it mysteriously disappears, and the handkerchief, restored, is
found in its place.

Before commencing this trick, the performer has a fine piece of linen rolled up tightly.
The other apparatus is a dummy candle made of cardboard, covered with white glazed
paper, with merely a piece of candle stuck in the top, and is otherwise quite hollow and
open at the bottom. Also a case sufficiently large to hold the candle, which case is covered
with fancy gelatine paper, according to taste. It is made to open at both ends, either of
which come out beyond the length of the candle.

The dummy handkerchief is kept just behind the screen, together with the imitation
candle; the case, however, lies on the table.

The performer now proceeds to borrow a handkerchief, and, in the case of several
being offered, selects one most resembling his dummy. This is rolled up in a similar


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Page 22

manner. The performer then remarks, ‘I am about to cause this handkerchief to pass
through the ordeal of fire; excuse me one instant while I procure a light.’ Saying which, he
vanishes behind the screen, secretes the handkerchief up the hollow of the candle, places
the candle in a stick, takes up the dummy handkerchief, and reappears before the
audience. The candle is lighted, and the prepared cambric burnt, after which, turning to
the lender with a bright smile, the performer says, ‘I trust you will pardon me; your
handkerchief has failed to pass the ordeal successfully; if you will accept of its remains,
and claim no compensation, you shall have them together with the candle. See, I will put
them in this nice little case, and make you a present of the whole at the close of the

Saying this, he takes off one end of the case and places the candle inside, with a few of
the ashes of the handkerchief, and closes it again; then proceeding with some other trick,
until he has occasion to go amongst his audience, when, taking the candle and box with
him, he presents it to the lady or gentleman, as the case may be, taking off the opposite end
as he gives it, so that instead of the candle meeting the view of those around, the end of the
handkerchief is seen protruding, and is brought forth restored. The real cause of the delay
in not instantly making the restoration, is to divert the attention of the audience, as they
might otherwise notice that it was not the same end which was originally removed. The
candle inside is papered exactly to match the lining of the case, so it cannot be discerned at
all when the bottom end of the case is removed.

The Enchanted Card and Rose.

An ordinary playing card is held in the
hand of the performer before the audience,
and changes instantaneously to a beautiful
rose, which he wears in his coat the remainder
of the evening.

The card is selected from a pack (see
forcing pack) by the audience, and is then
handed to the performer, who, standing in
full view of the company, and speaking of the
various tricks and dodges made use of by
sharpers, announces his intention of doing a
little card playing on his own account. ‘Now,
ladies and gentlemen, I am not much of a
swindler at cards, but I intend to win this
game. I take this one card which you have
kindly handed to me and simply touch the
face of it thus,’ and as he speaks the performer
draws his hand gently over the front of the
card, when instantly his hand is observed to
contain a very beautiful rose, but nothing


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Page 42

are really placed, and not down the pistol at all. Then, as the performer walks towards his
audience he allows the cup to fall out into the hollow of his hand, and palms it away. A
little charge of powder has been previously put into the barrel and a cap placed on the
nipple, and the gentleman requested to point the pistol in a straight line with the loaf held
in the hand of the performer, and to fire. The loaf, which can be either procured from
behind the scene or kept on the servante, and produced as if by magic, has had a slit made
in one side into which the watch is slipped. When the pistol is discharged the performer,
apparently with great difficulty, breaks open the loaf and produces the watch.

The other kind of mortar I will term the

Professional Watch Mortar.

This is of wood, with the bottom made movable, acting on a swivel, so that he
performer can cause the watch to fall on to the hand when required. A wood pestle with
an extra thick end, is used, which end is hollow inside, and is made to unscrew, and let out
the broken fragments of the watch contained therein. The pestle fits tightly into the
bottom of the mortar, so that by giving it a turn or two between the blows it readily
unscrews. A second pestle, innocent of any trickery, is kept for examination.

To produce this watch a target is sometimes used instead of a loaf, the pistol being fired
at the target, in the centre of which is a little hook, and the instant the pistol is fired the
watch is observed hanging on the hook. The target is quite ordinary in appearance,
standing about fifteen inches high, made of metal and japanned in colours, having the
bullseye in the centre, on which is fixed a little black hook.

The bullseye is made movable, and can be caused to revolve at pleasure. This is effected
by means of a very strong spiral spring at the back, which is fastened to the bottom pivot,
on which the bullseye rests, and which, when the centre is turned half round tightens the
spring considerably, so that it flies back to its normal position immediately it is released. It
is kept however, from flying back by means of a wire, which travels down the interior of
the pillar of the target and moves up and down. Consequently, when the bullseye is set the
wire is pulled down, when a piece that is bent horizontally holds it firmly in this position.
The centre is painted alike on each side, and both have a small hook to match. The watch is
hung on the hook at the back, after the bullseye has been set, and at the moment the pistol
is fired the performer (if holding the target in his hand) presses up the wire from the
bottom, when, the catch being released, the bullseye swings half round, and the watch
faces the audience. It is impossible for the bullseye to revolve more than half the circle,
because of a projecting piece of metal at the back which stops it. The action is so quick that
the audience cannot observe the movement, even were it not for the smoke from the pistol,
which assists in obscuring a perfect vision. In tables fitted with traps the target is worked
by means of a piston rod, so that on pulling a cord a steel rod issues through the table and
pushes up the little metal disc that is at the bottom of the wire.


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The Mysterious Card Table.

For burning a card to ashes, and then, instantly restoring it.

The performer requests the audience to
select card. This is done, and the card then
taken and burnt to ashes, which are placed on
a small table. A metal cover, which may be
examined, is placed over these, and a
transformation demanded. Any one of the
audience may then raise the cover, when no
ashes whatever can be discovered, but the
card in its original state is lying on the table.

The explanation is extremely simple. Over
the table is fitted loosely, but so as not to
shake, a slab in exact imitation of the
table-top, with the exception naturally that it
is a little larger. This lodges very tightly into
the cover when the lid is placed on and fits so
firmly that it is almost impossible to dislodge it, even if suspicion is aroused, which is not
probable, as it fits very exactly. A card similar to the one selected by the audience is placed
on the table, and the slab put on. The rest is easily seen. As the lid is placed over the ashes it
is slightly pressed down by the performer, when it grips the table cover, so that on the top
being lifted off only the entire card remains. The little table is made of metal, and generally
japanned black and gold. A forcing-pack is used to cause the audience to select a similar
card to that concealed.


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