Modern Magicians

HOUDINI, (Alhambra)

The King of Handcuffs.

The Handcuff Trick, where a known pattern " cuff " and duplicate keys are used, lias for many years been a favourite with so called spirit mediums and magicians who would duplicate their performances, but under a different role.

Mr. Harry Houdini, now filling a return engagement at the Alhambra after a more than successful tour in Germany, and whose portrait we present to our readers this month, has eclipsed anything yet produced in this line, either by mediums or magicians ; had the mediums known his secret before he produced his act under the role of a magician they would, doubtless, have had another "flutter." Houdini undertakes to free himself from any regulation 'iron,' or from several at one and the same time, and he invariably succeeds in doing so in less time than it takes to bind him.

I have seen Mr. Houdini with three pairs of strange irons on his wrists, connected with others, equally strange, on his feet; and on another occasion when two sailorsfrom H.M.S. "Powerful," who evidently took a keen interest in their task, screwed their ship irons on his wrists at the same time "trussing" him with a broom handle in such a position that he could not even roll into his cabinet but had to be carried there by the sailors who dropped him in a heap on the floor. In each of these cases Houdini succeeded in liberating himself in less time than it took to "fix "him.

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