Conjuring Credits

The Origins of Wonder

User Tools

Site Tools

Sand Frame

This small photo frame, gaffed either to produce or to vanish a playing card or other flat item, is reported by Prof. Hoffmann (More Magic, 1890, p. 102) and Sidney W. Clarke (The Magic Wand, Vol. 14 No. 127, Oct.-Nov. 1925, p. 143) to have been invented by Bosco. Hoffmann was likely Clarke's source. Hoffmann's source is unknown and unverified. Hoffmann introduced some confusion in referring to “the elder Bosco […] who visited England some thirty years ago.” The “elder” Bosco would presumably be Bartolomeo (1793-1863), who is known to have performed in London in 1851. That is roughly nine years too early to fit Hoffmann's timing. Clarke lays the invention of the Sand Frame at the feet of Bartolomeo's illegitimate son, Eugene (1823-1891), who moved from Italy to England c. 1855. This is a better fit for Hoffmann's dating, although his choice of the word “visited” seems peculiar in his writing that Bosco “visited England some thirty years ago.” A residence taken up five years before, and for some time after, the period indicated might be thought something more than a visit. Nevertheless, Eugene Bosco is most likely the performer Hoffmann intended.