Me Capi

It has been said that " Only the great tricks live." The fact that the Cap and Pence has survived virtually unchanged since the 1635 edition of Hocus Pocus Junior justifies its place amongst the great small tricks of to-day. One very strong point in its favour is that, when worked with a match box drawer as a cover for the coins, it is one of the few effects which can rationally be worked anywhere as an apparently genuine impromptu item.

Like most other old effects the Cap and Pence has received its full share of attention in the spate of modern magical literature and at least eight recently published routines come to mind; my only reason for complying with the request to add to these and write up my routine is that I found the effect on a lay audience so clear cut and strong. The normal routine was too brief and failed to exploit the full possibilities.

The routine which follows has been developed and thoroughly tested over a number of years and incorporates several features not found in other published routines. The use of a tumbler as a display stand serves to focus attention and to increase the visibility of this rather small effect. The use of a die or other extraneous object was eliminated as I was never able to find any logical patter to explain the inclusion of this in an otherwise straightforward coin effect.


Ten coins—pennies or halfcrowns—disposed five in each trouser pocket.

A stack—in left trouser pocket—consisting of five coins soldered or waxed together. There is no need for these to pivot or for the stack to be hollowed out.

A Brymay matchbox—in right trouser pocket —containing a few matches.

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