“It’s Up His Sleeve!” – Historical Origins?

Discuss the historical aspects of magic, including memories, or favorite stories.

Postby magicam » 07/17/11 10:00 PM

Hi Folks,

I've been doing a bit of research on one of the most clichd laymans explanations for how a trick is done: up his sleeve.

Just curious if anyone has encountered any very early references to this term/explanation, in magic or general literature.


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Postby Philippe Billot » 07/18/11 02:57 AM

In New Modern Coin Magic by Bobo (1966), you can read this page xviii:

A rythmed account of a visit to Bartholomew Fair in 1717 contains these lines :

-The large Half-Crown his magick Jaws can blow
-Unseen, unflet, into the Sleeves of Beau.

Remember also that the first version of Egg Bag was made with eggs in the sleeve, not with the secret pocket
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