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The Miracle Mongers














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The Miracle Mongers

Harry Houdini exposes the tricks that astonish folks in this book that he himself authored - This is a book on how common psychology, special effects and trickery can create miracles for audiences.

The author tries to explain that there may be nothing supernatural in magic but only science and illusion.

He refers to miracle mongers are mere mortal men without any supernatural powers but have the knowledge of how to create illusions and wow audiences.

Readers will find interesting tricks and objects used to create illusions. Definitely, a must-read book for magicians and anyone engaged in entertainment business!

Contents

LETTER

I. EVERY MAN SHOULD HAVE A HOME

II. A GRATEFUL CLIENT

III. THE BEAUTY OF TRUTH AND UTILITY

IV. PROFESSIONAL FOLLY

V. BUILDING-SITES AND FOUNDATION-WALLS

VI. GRAVEL-BANKS AND QUAGMIRES

VII. NATURE'S BRICKS ARE BETTER THAN OURS

VIII. THERE IS A SOFT SIDE EVEN TO A STONE WALL

IX. A BROAD HOUSE IS BETTER THAN A HIGH ONE

X. TROUT BROOKS ARE BETTER THAN STREET SEWERS

XI. THE STRENGTH AND DURABILITY OF BRICK

XII. THE WEAKNESS AND SHAM OF BRICKWORK

XIII. SKILL DIGNIFIES THE MOST HUMBLE MATERIAL

XIV. EVERY MAN TO HIS TRADE

XV. THE COMING HOUSE WILL BE FAIR TO SEE AND MADE OF BRICK

XVI. DOMESTIC DISCIPLINE

XVII. GOOD TASTE IS NOT A FOE BUT A FRIEND TO ECONOMY

XVIII. OUR PICTURESQUE ANCESTORS

XIX. THE USE AND THE ABUSE OF WOOD

XX. A SURRENDER AND CHANGE OF BASE

XXI. HOSPITALITY AND SUNLIGHT

XXII. UNPROFESSIONAL SAGACITY

XXIII. STAIRWAYS AND OUTLOOKS

XXIV. IN A MULTITUDE OF COUNSELLORS IS SAFETY

XXV. DOORS AND SLIDING-DOORS, WINDOWS AND BAY-WINDOWS

XXVI. EXPERIENCE KEEPS A DEAR SCHOOL

XXVII. FASHION AND ORNAMENT, HARD WOOD AND PAINT

XXVIII. THOUGHT PROVOKES INQUIRY

XXIX. CONSISTENCY, COMFORT, AND CARPETS

XXX. AUTOBIOGRAPHY AND ARCHITECTURE, POTATOES AND POSTSCRIPTS

XXXI. DOMESTIC-SERVICE REFORM

XXXII. GO TO; LET US BUILD A TOWER

XXXIII. BASEMENTS AND BALCONIES

XXXIV. FOUR ROOMS ENOUGH

XXXV. CONVENIENCES AND CONJECTURES

XXXVI. THE LESSON OF THE ICE-HOUSE

XXXVII. SHINGLES, SUNSHINE, AND FRESH AIR

XXXVIII. WHERE THE DOCTORS DIFFER

XXXIX. HOW TO DO IT

XL. THE BREATH OF LIFE

XLI. ETERNAL VIGILANCE

LII. SAVED BY CONSCIENCE

XLIII. FINAL AND PERSONAL

BY WAY OF APPENDIX

Book Excerpts:
My professional life has been a constant record of disillusion, and many things that seem wonderful to most men are the every-day commonplaces of my business. But I have never been without some seeming marvel to pique my curiosity and challenge my investigation. In this book I have set down some of
the stories of strange folk and unusual performers that I have gathered in many years of such research.

Much has been written about the feats of miracle-mongers, and not a little in the way of explaining them. Chaucer was by no means the first to turn shrewd eyes upon wonder- workers and show the clay feet of these popular idols. And since his time innumerable marvels, held to be supernatural, have been exposed for the tricks they were.

Yet to-day, if a mystifier lack the ingenuity to invent a new and startling stunt, he can safely fall back upon a trick that has been the favorite of pressagents the world over in all ages. He can imitate the Hindoo fakir who, having thrown a rope high into the air, has a boy climb it until he is lost to view.

He can even have the feat photographed. The camera will click; nothing will appear on the developed film; and this, the performer will glibly explain, proves' that the whole company of onlookers was hypnotized! And he can be certain of a very profitable following to defend and advertise him.

So I do not feel that I need to apologize for adding another volume to the shelves of works dealing with the marvels of the miracle- mongers. My business has given me an intimate knowledge of stage illusions, together
with many years of experience among show people of all types.

My familiarity with the former, and what I have learned of the psychology of the latter, has placed me at a certain advantage in uncovering the natural explanation of feats that to the ignorant have seemed supernatural. And even if my readers are too well informed to be interested in my descriptions of the methods of the various performers who have seemed to me worthy of
attention in these pages, I hope they will find some amusement in following the fortunes and misfortunes of all manner of strange folk who once bewildered the wise men of their day.

If I have accomplished that much, I shall feel amply repaid for my labor.
(ID 33797989)

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