taking apparently great pains to conceal it from you. You then repeat some proverb or quotation at random, haltingly, as if reading it with difficulty—which quotation your confederate immediately claims, saying, "That's mine." It is then laid open in your lap, where you may snatch a glimpse of what is written, and repeat it when the next paper is placed against your mighty brain. Or you may openly read it, as if to verify your former statement, remembering what it is, so as to ascribe it to the paper that follows. The second in your lap, you pretend that what you read belongs to the third, which you are assuming to decipher with closed eyes. Each person acknowledges his or her own, and it appears as if all had been read in turn—to the mystification of all not in the secret.
You may then descant upon the extreme sensitiveness of touch that comes to those who have occult powers, and assure the company that, all humbug aside, and purely by the sense of touch, you will tell them whether the spots on playing-cards are red or black, holding the pack against your forehead—the faces turned outward. You feel card after card with the forefinger, and, promptly naming it red or black, place it on the table.
The difficulty is not great. A confederate sits near you—the opposite side of a table is best—and touches your foot when a red card appears, and refrains from any signal when a black one is revealed—the sense of touch alone deciding it, as was claimed.
A popular game, called "Mesmeric Influence," is played without trickery or any "double-entente." One person leaves the room and in his absence all agree upon something that he shall do upon his return. At his reappearance all concentrate their attention upon him—willing him to do the thing agreed upon. In