Conjuring Credits

The Origins of Wonder

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Second Deal

Although used for centuries by card cheats, descriptions of the Second Deal managed to stay out of conjuring texts for a remarkably long time. The first published mention of the sleight may be in Horatio Galasso's Giochi di carte bellissimi di regola e di memoria, 1593, pp. 83 & 89 of the Pieper translation in Gibecière, Vol. 2 No. 2, Summer 2007. Galasso calls the sleight a retengo, which translates as “hold back”. He describes the use of the sleight, but gives no details on its execution. It wasn't until the eighteenth century that the move was given a detailed explanation in print:

The Strike Second Deal appeared in Gabriel Mailhol's Le Philosophe Négre et Les Secrets Des Grecs, 1764, p. 80, but stayed out of English texts for another eighty years until Johnathan Harrington Green's description in An Exposure of the Arts and Miseries of Gambling, 1843, p. 31.

The Push-off Second Deal was described in an anonymous text, I segreti del giuoco della Bassetta, 1803, p. 60. Fifty-eight years later, Jean Eugene Robert-Houdin described it in Les Tricheries des Grecs Devoilees, 1861, p. 169 of the Hoffmann translation.