The conjurer's trade always produces some unique and intriguing collectibles, and offers collectors a view into a mysterious world, as we've seen at the sale of props by the legendary Jay Marshall (which included Houdini memorabilia) and those of Dai Vernon.
So it's pleasing to see that a selection of pieces is coming up for sale as part of Potter and Potter's sale at the end of this month which include magic memorabilia and a closely related range of collectibles to assist card players who want to cheat, as well as those who just want to gamble straight.
The range of materials spread across 322 lots includes a device used to detect special ink used to mark cards, tap (ie weighted) dice and even a vintage arm pressure holdout.
The latter is a lazy-tong style brass holdout with leather arm straps actuated by pressure from the operator's arm used to secretly deliver cards to or steal cards from the operator's hand. It's the way Spiderman would cheat at cards.
Perhaps more subtle is a handout embedded in a table, which can pass a card up into a player's hand discretely. The ingenious device hidden inside the table is activated with pressure from the base of the operator's hand, into which the card is pivoted from its secret location. This is expected to bring $3,000-$5,000.
If you have furry dice, or more likely if your dice aren't rolling the way you'd like, you could use a Dice Shaver, and one is listed here at $1,200-$1,800.
The likely top lot, however is a fifth edition copy of Richard Seymour's The Compleat Gamester. Illustrated, and bound in contemporary calf, it is expected to sell for $6,000-$8,000 in the auction which takes place in Chicago, Illinois in the USA and online on January 29.
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