Linking Rings History

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Linking Rings History

Postby Guest » February 12th, 2003, 9:23 am

Hi, does anybody know any sources about the linking rings, except that they are very old and from China?

Thank you,
Andi

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Pete Biro
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Pete Biro » February 12th, 2003, 9:43 am

Yes, they are old... and I really don't think they originated in China.

I have sources that say a performer in Spain entertained the crown heads of Belgium before any printed material came from the Orient.

My opinion, based on lots of study and research?

Egyptian magicians started it and it travelled East AND West on the silk and trade routes.

The "so called" famous Chinese troupe that many wrote that "Phillipe" saw do the rings??? Topper Martyn advised me that they (the Chinese) in that touring troupe DID NOT do the rings.

I have a facsimile copy of the first known instruction sheet, from a Japanese collector... however sources describing the rings in Europe pre-date this. I don't have the material handy or I could quote you the dates.
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Pete Biro
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Pete Biro » February 12th, 2003, 9:45 am

In addition, I have a photo that I took at an archeological digs near a Roman Theater from around 400 BC that shows (in a display case) what looks to be a couple of rings and a key ring, without any description.

I also have pictures from an Italian museum showing rings in a little stack with a "key" (or broken?) ring...

Lots to ponder.
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Michael Edwards
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Michael Edwards » February 12th, 2003, 9:53 am

I'm not an expert on this one, but most sources do suggest that -- whatever there actual origin --the Linking Rings were introduced into Europe early in the nineteenth century by a troupe of Chinese magicians. Several accounts credit what is believed to be the first company of Chinese "jugglers" that appeared in London's West End in 1830 with their introduction. We know that the effect was quickly adopted by Western conjurers. The English magician M. Jacobs (18??-1870)performed the Linking Rings as early as 1834. Two years later, the great French conjurer Philippe (Jacques Andre Noel Talon 1802-1878) added the effect to his repetoire, claiming to have been taught the trick by these Chinese magicians whom he met in Dublin. Whether this is true or not (see Pete's posting above), the fact remains that the Linking Rings quickly became a high point of Philippe's act.

As for whether the effect actually has a Chinese link, Reverend Doolittle's 1867 work The Social Life of the Chinese recounts his years as a missionary in China and notes the Linking Rings as a common form of popular entertainment at the time. Of course, I'd accept Pete's view that the effect may well be early Egyptian in origin. After all, he was there :D

I hope this helps.
Michael Edwards

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Pete Biro
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Pete Biro » February 12th, 2003, 11:18 am

The Spaniard was doing the rings in the 1500s, and I have a drawing of a "Hindu" doing the rings at a very early date as well.

Yes I was there in Egypt and can also tell you the Milbourne Christopher article about the Egyptian tomb art showing the cups and balls is bogus... they are molding bread... if you look at the drawings alongside, you see it is in an agricultural setting.

And yes Michael me bucko... am still compiling the book "History of the Linking Rings" which will be published by Stevens Magic... ;)
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Guest

Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Guest » February 12th, 2003, 1:13 pm

I have a portion of a painting by Giacomo Mantegazza painted in 1876 called Une Soiree Oisive au Serail posted on my site that has an interesting presentation of the rings you might like to see.
you can look at it here http://members.aol.com/payne/art.htm

Craig Matsuoka
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Craig Matsuoka » February 12th, 2003, 2:49 pm

There's a review of the book "An Illustrated History of White Magic before Robert-Houdin" (English Edition) on the Magical Past-Times website:

http://www.uelectric.com/pastimes/guillemin.htm

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Pete Biro
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Pete Biro » February 12th, 2003, 3:54 pm

Great source, gotta find and buy the book.
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Gary Hunt
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Gary Hunt » February 15th, 2003, 8:19 pm

Pete,
You can order a copy from Clay Shevlin for $48 postpaid at: Clay H. Shevlin, 615 S. Mohawk Drive, Santa Ana, CA, USA 92704. Let me know if you need his e-mail address.

Glad to hear you are still working on the book, any idea when it will be published?

Gary Hunt
Editor
Magical Past-Times
Gary Hunt
www.magicfootnotes.com

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Pete Biro
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Re: Linking Rings History

Postby Pete Biro » February 15th, 2003, 9:01 pm

I'd like his email address. Thanks... publishing date? Yikes... I gotta get back to serious work on the page layouts... :eek:
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