|Gibson, Walter: Magic Explained
©1949 1st Edition, Permabooks
©1958 Vista House Publishers
Hardcover, 188 pages
(also in softcover)
Image courtesy Bryan-Keith Taylor
Vista House Publishers Edition
Image courtesy Bryan-Keith Taylor
Comments (Stewart Tame): Part of a line of books, along with Yoga Explained and Palmistry Explained, the 1958 version of The Idiot's Guide To ____ series, apparently.
7 Chapter 1 -
Twizzlers: Puzzles and stunts, mostly.
8 Coin and Saucer: Pick up coin from water-filled saucer without getting fingers wet.
9 Dimes and Pennies: Three dimes, three pennies, seven spaces, exchange sides by leapfrogging coins.
10 Power of Thought: Magician tells whether spectator is holding dime or penny.
11 Drop the Match-Box: Magician can drop match-box so it lands on end, spectators can't.
12 Card and Glass: Glass of water balanced on card.
13 Glass and Cigarette: Cigarette and glass held in hand, both tossed into air, glass flips over, cigarette lands in glass.
Match in Mid-Air: Lit match seems to levitate behind clasped hands.
15 Three Coin Twizzler: Three coins placed in hand, one vanishes.
16 The Twizzle Card: Word written on both sides of card turns upside down, etc.
18 One-Hand Knot
18 Coin and Bottle: Bottle inverted and balanced on coin, bottle removed without touching it.
19 The Puzzling Label: Label on inside of bottle.
20 Catch the Sugar: Two cubes of sugar and glass in same hand, cubes flipped into glass one at a time, more difficult than seems.
21 Chapter 2-Pocket
22 The Penetrating Match: Match impaled on safety pin penetrates other bar of pin.
23 Stack the Chips: Plastic chips with different colored spots on each side, spectator stacks chips, notes color on top and bottom of stack, magician names the two colors.
25 Three Medals: Without looking, magician knows which of three medals have been selected.
25 The Mysterious Domino: Domino travels from one match-box to another.
26 Jumping Rubber Band
28 Bottle and Pills: Pellets sink in water, magician covers bottle with hank, removes pellets without spilling water.
29 Self-Opening Match-Box: Match-box opens itself and some matches fly out.
30 Self-Closing Match-Box: Variant of above.
31 Magnetized Glasses: Two glasses seem to cling to the cover of a handkerchief-wrapped book.
32 The Passing Pennies: Under cover of pack of matches, pennies travel from one hand to the other.
33 Three Divining Rods: Three colored rods fit into tube, magician reveals which of three is in tube without looking.
34 The Rattle Bars: One bar rattles, other two do not, spectator never picks the one that rattles.
3-Self-Working Card Tricks
36 Guess Again: Magician cuts pack, predicts top card of one half, repeats several times.
38 Find Your Own: Spectator selects one card from ten, deals cards one at a time, last card left is their card.
39 As Many As You: Spectator cuts off unknown number of cards, magician does likewise, magician's total seems to predict spectator's total.
42 The Double Clock: Cards dealt in clock fashion, spectator's cards show up at the position determined by the total value of the cards they chose.
44 Three Deal Prediction: Magician writes down prediction, spectator selects that card.
46 Color Sense: Magician seems to know the ratio of reds to blacks dealt by spectator.
48 Faces Up: Cards mixed face up and face down, magician divides deck into two piles with same number of face up cards in each without looking.
50 Sure-Win Poker Hand: Magician's hand beats spectator's even though spectator chooses cards.
51 The Identical Cards: Two decks, magician and spectator choose card with decks behind back, selections match.
54 Nine Card Deal: Spectator mentally selects one of nine cards, magician reveals it.
56 Chapter 4-Suitcase Magic
57 The Quick-Change Handkerchief: Hank changes color when passed through hand.
58 The Wandering Milk: Glass of milk travels from paper tube to hat.
59 The Penetrable Card: Jumbo card in wooden frame, pencil through card.
62 Modern Vanishing Glass: Glass filled from bottle, covered with hank, vanishes.
63 The Vanishing Ink: Glass filled with ink, covered with tube, ink vanishes.
66 Adhesive Milk: Milk bottle inverted, milk doesn't pour out, metal skewer thrust inside bottle to prove no obstructions.
67 Bottle and Rope: Variation on classic Rope and Vase using different method.
68 The Red Ribbon Pack: Cards on ribbon, one chosen and returned to pack, ribbon threaded through, chosen card not top or bottom, cards covered with hank, magician brings out single card to end of ribbon, it is selection.
70 The Gay Blade: Arm guillotine with pivoting blade action, magician's arm through hole, unharmed.
72 The Patriotic Liquids: 12 glasses-four each of red, white and blue liquids-poured into covered jar, cover removed, liquids in alternating layers.
73 The Penetrating Liquid: Liquid in can, sheet of glass placed over can, inverted funnel on glass, everything flipped over, on command liquid pours from funnel into container, can shown empty.
75 The Vanishing Candle: Lit candle covered with cloth, vanishes.
75 Card, Seal, and Ribbon: Card selected and signed, seal placed on indifferent card and signed by another spectator, seal winds up attached to signed card.
77 Sands of Sahara: Two metal pans filled with sand, poured back and forth, pans placed mouth to mouth, flowers produced.
79 Chapter 5-Spook Tricks
82 The Spirit Answer: Two sheets of paper with carbon paper between, question written on paper and signed by spectator, spectator's signature transfers through but question doesn't-answer to question instead.
83 The Polar Ghost: Cool breeze seems to emanate from magician's fingers.
The Talking Key: Key clinks against glass to answer questions.
85 The Spooky Weights: Fishing weights attached to corks inside bottles sway at magician's command.
86 The Floating Table: Two different methods.
88 In the Dark: Bookmark thrust into book at random, room darkened, magician reads first sentence.
89 Under Cover: Magician reads messages written by spectators even though in total darkness.
91 Catch the Ghost: Room darkened, whirling luminous figure appears darting back and forth, vanishes the minute the lights come up.
92 The Spirit Post: Magician's hands tied to post in center of cabinet, curtain drawn, spirits manifest, curtain opened to show magician still tied to post.
94 Seance In the Light: Tambourines, slates, etc. on table, magician holds up cloth in front of table, spirits manifest.
96 The Hand of Cagliostro: Wooden hand on sheet of glass, raps to answer questions.
98 Cassadaga Propaganda: Small chest filled with tambourines, etc. lifted up and balanced on the backs of two chairs, doors closed, spirits manifest.
100 The Knotty Spook: Rope coiled and placed in box with end dangling, rope pulled out by end and seen to have knots tied in it.
102 The Clutching Hand: In darkened room, skeleton hand seen to visibly clutch at spectators.
103 Chapter 6-Larger
104 The Flowing Coconut: Coconut shell used to dip water from large bowl, water poured back into bowl, keeps pouring and pouring and pouring and ...
106 The Eggs From the Hat: So many eggs produced that volunteers can't hold them all.
108 The Fade-Away Glass: Large glass filled with water and covered with cloth, audience members feel under cloth to make sure glass still there, magician whisks away cloth, glass gone.
109 The Imaginary Keg: Cardboard with drawing of keg shown and placed on easel, tap inserted into keg opening (hole in cardboard) and several glasses filled,
111 Fish From the Air: Classic Aerial Fishing routine.
113 Houdini's Giant Bowl Mystery: Sheet of glass in frame laid on table, glass bowl of water on top, water darkened with ink, streamers and more produced completely dry from bowl.
115 The Great Sack Escape: Magician in sack, tied, knots sealed, behind curtain, escapes, leaving knots tied, etc.
117 Canary and Light Bulb: Canary removed from cage, tossed at lit bulb, light goes out, canary seen inside bulb, broken to free it.
118 Fish Globe Production: Bowl full of fish produced.
120 Aquarium Production: Tank full of fish appears on table.
122 Duck or Rabbit Production Box: Box opened and shown empty, duck or rabbit produced.
124 The Flying Cage: Bird cage covered with cloth, lifted from table and placed into frame, vanishes.
125 The Pop-Through Frame: Large square frame covered with sheet of paper and held by assistant, colored silks, flags, etc. produced by punching hole in paper and pulling them through.
126 Chapter 7-Magic of the Mind
130 Message Reading: The One Ahead principle.
131 Single Messages: Messages sealed in envelopes, envelopes signed by spectators, magician reads messages without opening envelopes, spectators open own envelopes to confirm.
133 The Untouched Card: Two packs of cards, magician takes one, both packs shuffled, exchanged, cut, spectator selects card, magician selects prediction card, prediction matches, spectator never reveals card aloud.
135 Duplicated Thought: Spectator writes message or draws figure on slate, wipes clean with wet rag, magician takes slate, reproduces message/drawing.
137 Color Clairvoyance: Colored cylinder chosen by spectator and sealed in tube, magician divines color.
139 Out of the Phone Book: Book test with phone book.
142 The Marked Name: Names chosen at random written on slate, magician holds slate and marks one, name chosen from list by spectator, marked name is the one chosen.
145 The Random Mind: Spectator told to write random three digit number on paper, magician writes prediction, both match.
147 In the Crystal: Spectator gazes into crystal ball and names card chosen by another.
148 Calling All Cards: Spectator correctly names cards chosen by magician.
150 Nailed Thoughts: Deck shuffled, magician nails it to board, spectator tears off cards one by one, magician correctly names them without looking.
152 Nine Out of Nine: Spectator given envelope to hold, asked to concoct random number of five digits or more, arithmetic performed until a final single digit number is reached, spectator selects one of four colors, number and color matched by playing cards in envelope.
155 Relayed Thought: Spectator holds one end of rope, magician the other, another spectator selects random number, magician calls out digits, rope-holder stops him on the correct one.
157 The Mental Challenge: Committee of spectators chooses message while magician out of room, magician enters, writes prediction, prediction matches message.
160 Chapter 8-Stage
167 Film to Life: Magician interacts with film, seeming to enter the movie, produce objects from it, etc.
170 The Girl of Iron: Girl in trance supports weight of two people, one on each outstretched arm.
172 The Drop-Away Cabinet: Girl in cabinet complete surrounded by audience members, cabinet raised four feet above stage, curtains drop
from sides, girl vanished.
174 The Escape From Sing-Sing: Assistants seem to travel from one cabinet to the other, cabinets decorated like cells, prison theme.
177 Spiked Alive: Cabinet with spikes at top, assistant enters, door closed, spikes (handles protrude from sides) pulled to bottom, spikes seen protruding through bottom of cabinet, moved back up, door opened, assistant unharmed.
179 The Glass Sheet Mystery: Four assistants carry in girl on sheet of glass, cloth held up momentarily, girl vanishes.
180 Crushing A Girl: One assistant in box full of balloons, two assistants in box suspended above it, top box lowered into first, balloons pop, raised back up, assistants unharmed.
183 The Cane Cabinet: Sword Box with canes.
185 Catching A Bullet: History of trick given as well as one method of performing, extreme caution advised.