Magic Trick: A Fruitful Experiment

Here is a pretty trick for two people. They begin by borrowing two hats, and then standing side by side they place the hats in front of them on two chairs that are turned sideways, so that the backs will not obstruct the view of the audience. The hats are turned over and shown to be empty, yet when they are replaced and Mr. Number One puts his hand in the hat before him, he brings out a lemon. He holds it up so that all may see it, and then hands it to his friend on his left, Mr. Number Two, who takes it and puts it into the hat that is before him. This they continue, until at least a dozen lemons are taken from one hat and put in the other. Finally Number One announces that his hat is empty. "How many have you?" he asks his friend. The latter turns over his hat, and shows—it is empty. Where did the lemons come from and where did they go? Surely they were not "up the sleeve." Certainly not, though they might be hidden there, for only two lemons are needed for the trick.

Each of the performers has a lemon under his left arm pit. Before they begin, they hold out their hands to show that they are empty. Then they pull up their sleeves, first the right, next the left. As the left is pulled up the right hand goes, naturally, under the arm pit and takes the lemon from the place of concealment. Keeping the back of his hand to the audience Number One thrusts his hand into the hat and produces the lemon. He pretends to put it in his left hand and give it to Number Two, but keeps it in his right hand, turning the back to the audience. As his left hand meets Number Two's right, the latter allows his lemon to be seen. If properly and carefully done, the two men acting in concert, it will appear to the audience as if one lemon had passed from Number One to Number Two. As soon as Number Two appears to have the lemon, he pretends to pass it to his left hand, but retains it in his right. Then his left hand goes inside his hat, which he taps gently as if he had dropped the lemon, and immediately brings his hand out. These actions are repeated until it seems as if ten or twelve lemons had been produced and stored away, and, finally, the hats are turned over and shown to be empty.

Index of Magic Tricks | Previous Trick: Firing a Girl from a Cannon Into a Trunk | Next Trick: Something from Nothing