Conjuring Credits

The Origins of Wonder

User Tools

Site Tools

1-0-1 Force Deck

This variety of force deck uses the principle of alternating the cards of a ranging force bank with indifferent cards, so that the spectator can cut or deal through the deck to any point, and one of the force cards will be either the card he last dealt or the next card of the deck. The earliest prepared deck using this principle is the Svengali Deck, which forces a particular card rather than one in a limited group.

Moving from gimmicked decks to stacks in a standard deck, Frederick Montague employed a 1-0-1 type stack in “Spirits in Parliament” from Westminster Wizardry, 1928, p. 32. Further applications of the principle began to appear in the 1930s, such as Edward Bagshawe's “Sealed Mystery” in Twenty Magical Novelties (1930, p. 26) and “Curious Coincidence” in Jean Hugard's Card Manipulations No. 5, (1936, p. 149), a version of which was published as S. Leo Horowitz's “Psychological Discovery” in John Northern Hilliard's Greater Magic (1938, p. 549).

The second best-known example of a 1-0-1 stack (the Svengali Deck being the first) is the 1-0-1 Deck, also called the Five Star Miracle Deck. This is made of duplicate banks of four force cards alternated with indifferent cards. When using a Svengali Deck, the cards must be dealt face down to avoid duplicates being noticed. The strength of the 1-0-1 Deck is that the cards are dealt face up. The deck was first described, in the context of “Five Star Miracle”, in Best of Billfooled by Harry Lorayne (1958). Although Al Koran did not claim to have invented the deck, it is frequently misattributed to him and called the Koran Deck, due to his influential presentation of “Five Star Miracle”. Although evidence is circumstantial, the 1-0-1 Deck seems most likely to have been Richard Himber's idea.

See Banked Deck