Before the would-be conjurer may hope to mystify an audience successfully with a pack of cards he must master certain sleight of hand moves that are a part of every card trick that requires skill. These moves can be attained only by constant practice. There are a number of these sleights, but only such as are necessary successfully to perform the particular tricks herein described will be explained.
Of late years a number of so-called "card kings" have appeared whose sole ability consists in making what is known as "the back-hand palm," a bit of card jugglery which is utterly useless in those beautiful and bewildering card illusions that may be shown with an audience on every side of the performer. Besides being useless this particular move has so frequently been exposed, intentionally or carelessly, that it is now very generally understood by the average theater goer.
Magic Trick: The Pass
One of the foremost artifices resorted to in card conjuring is that known as the "pass," "shift," or sauter la coupe, as it is called in French. By this sleight a card which has been placed in the middle of the pack is transferred to either the top or the bottom without any one perceiving it. The position of two or more cards may be changed as readily as that of one card.
In order to do this the lower part of the pack on which a chosen card is placed must take the place of the upper part, which, in turn, goes to the bottom; in other words the positions of the two halves or portions are reversed.
When a card that has been selected is to be replaced in the pack, the performer opens the pack, as shown in Fig. 1. The card is received on the lower portion of the pack, which is then closed. In closing it, however, the tip of the little finger of the left hand is inserted between the two portions. The pack is now lying in the left hand in the position shown in Fig. 2, that is, with the thumb on the top of the pack and