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Magic That Makes Me Tick - Cups and Balls

By Adam Edgeley


My favourite effect has to be the famous cups and Balls.


Some say that the effect dates back to ancient Egypt wherein the tomb of Ben Hassan is a hyroglif of the ancient Egyptians performing the effect.

Though there is some controversy surrounding the picture.


Some people disagree and believe that it is not indeed the cups and ball trick but simply people baking bread. I've included the image for you to make your own assumptions.



One thing is for sure and that is that the effect is definitely one of the oldest and most popular effects. There is no documented evidence that the effect was performed by the ancient Egyptians.


A groundbreaking book Hocus Pocus junior is believed to be one of the first books to be written by a working magician although the author is in dispute. The book has a lengthy section on the cups and balls with illustrations.



The cups and balls is still going strong today with the likes of Gazzo street performances to Paul Gertner using steel balls adding sound to the effect. Pen and Teller perform the effect using clear plastic cups.



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