Secret And Patter

To Perform:

Bring forth the two ropes.

"Some time ago a magician was in a strange land and amongst strange people. His wanderings about the world had led him into peculiar places. Whether the people of this particular land were cannibals, Hottentots, or wild men I do not know, but when these natives saw the magician they quickly pounced on him and made him prisoner. He was led before the king, who, after some peculiar jibberish, beckoned to the Royal Executioner. The Royal Executioner thereupon took two ropes, something like these which I have here in my hands."

Show ropes and give them a good pull to show that they are strong.

Then hold ropes in right hand with middle of ropes across palm of hand and ends hanging down. Now pass one of the ropes over onto left hand.

Rope now on left hand is held in a special manner. Study illustrations carefully. With back of hand toward audience, lay the middle of the rope over forefinger of left hand. Pass second finger in front of rope and third and fourth fingers behind it, as in Figure 27.

Figure 27 Figur* 26 Figure 29

Now lay the second rope B over left forefinger so that all of your fingers are between the strands of the rope. Positions of both ropes shown in Figure 28.

PRACTICE LAYING THE ROPES ON LEFT HAND UNTIL YOU CAN GET THE ROPES INTO POSITION ALMOST AUTOMATICALLY.

"Yes, the ropes were something like these except that they were made of buckskin or certain strong grasses or fibers from the bark of trees."

Now note carefully the position of the two ropes on left hand. Study illustration 29, noting exact position of each of the fingers.

Insert third and fourth fingers of right hand between A2 and B2 and lift up A1 and A2 a little. Keep first two fingers of right hand in front of left hand to screen movements. See Figure 30, next page.

Hold third and fourth fingers of right hand right against edge of palm so that your grip on Rope A is secure. The left thumb and little finger should also have a tight grip on Rope B. See Figure 31.

Slip left second finger out of loop in Rope A and hold finger against front of Rope B. Press right thumb down on loop in Rope A, pulling loop A up and over loop in Rope B, and hold it tight between thumb and first finger of right hand, as in Figure 32. Hold other fingers of right hand close together in front of left hand to screen movements.

Slide left hand along Rope B to about a foot from joining of ropes.

This series of movements must be practiced until they can be done as one continuous movement. The forming of this fake joining of the ropes should take but a moment. Figure 33 shows ropes joined. If your movements are fast and screened with your fingers, the audience will not suspect that you are manipulating the ropes in any way. A slight swinging of the arms also helps to cover movements.

When the rope is finally held in the right hand with fake joining between first finger and thumb, back of hand to audience, spectators think you are merely holding the two ropes by the middle. Effect illustrated in Figure 34.

THE MAKING OF THIS FAKE JOINT IS, OF COURSE, THE FUNDAMENTAL MOVE IN THIS

TRICK. On your skill in making this joining quickly and without detection depends your success in presenting this effect. Practice these moves before the mirror until you have mastered them.

"Then the Royal Executioner placed the ropes around the magician's neck."

Put right hand back of your neck and force joining of two ropes in between neck and collar, as in I, Figure 35. As you do this, open up loop a little (see illustration 2, Figure 35) so that loop A is not folded over B. This is done so that ropes will come apart easily when you desire to pull them off your neck. Sometimes I leave one loop bent over the other and held tight between my neck and collar so that I can jerk on the ends of the ropes to show that they are secure. Then I reach back of my neck and loosen loops. Pressure between neck and collar holds ropes in place.

You now have ropes arranged around your neck--the two ends of one over your right shoulder, and the two ends of the other over your left shoulder, with the joining at the back of your neck, as illustrated in Figure 36. The spectators, of course, think that both ropes are around your neck.

Ff&ure 36 Fif^rc 37

"And he tied the ropes together in several knots."

Tie the four ends of the ropes together in two or three knots, not too close to neck. See Figure 37.

"Now the magician was a magician. Tying ropes around his neck seemed serious to him, as he thought they might hang him. He grasped the ropes with his hands and tried to get them off over his head, but he found that they were tied too tight for that."

Show ropes well tied around your neck. Then place right thumb between ropes A and A and between B and B. Grasp two upper ropes A and B by closing first two fingers around them.

Figure 38 pieure 39

Insert first two fingers of left hand between the same ropes but under right hand. Grasp two lower ropes A and B firmly with these two fingers, as in Figure 38.

The knots in the ropes should be far enough away from your neck to do this comfortably.

"Then he knew he would have to call on his magic power to aid him. He let out a yell that startled the king and then he uttered slowly some startling syllables which neither he nor the king knew. And then he gave the ropes a jerk."

Jerk ropes and, as you do so, spread the two ropes apart into loops, as illustrated in Figure 39. The illusion is that the ropes came right through the neck in the form of these loops. The audience thought you put the ropes around your neck and tied them together, thus forming these loops. Now when the ropes come off your neck in the form of these loops, the audience is convinced that you did put the ropes around in this manner and they are puzzled beyond words.

"And the magician was free—the ropes as solid as before. The king fell dead, the magician became king and lived happily ever after."

NOTE: This effect may be presented without patter if desired, especially if it is presented with other rope effects.

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