Charles Bertram The Court Conjurer

by Edwin A. Dawes

Charles Bertram was also a part of my magical youth, because our local library had a copy of The Modern Conjurer, and I spent hours pouring over this book. Consequently, the images of a serious-looking gentleman doing "Cards Up the Sleeve" is stamped in my memory. Again, this was a situation where I knew the name, but knew nothing of the man.

Edwin A. Dawes has done a marvelous job bringing to life Bertram and his contemporaries. We learn of Bertram the performer, the teacher, and the world traveler. Bertram was a favorite of British society, and enjoyed a long and close relationship with British Royalty, a relationship which (according to one apocryphal story) ended when Bertram became too familiar and asked the King for a cigar.

This is another beautifully done book, and the text is accompanied by almost 100 rare photographs. In addition to the biographical material, the last 140 pages contain reprints of Bertram material from various books and periodicals. Besides the well-known material from The Modern Conjurer, there are Bertram articles from magazines such as The Strand and The New Penny Magazine.

This is another book which I enjoyed immensely. It is a limited edition, so if you're interested, don't wait too long to pick up a copy.

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