A series of letters, between an unidentified friend and his correspondent (William Frederick Pinchbeck) comprising of how to train a pig, invisible lady and acoustic temple, philosophical swan, penetrating spy glasses, several magic tricks, such as how to catch a bullet, and reflections on ventriloquism.
This book includes the first known description of the "Eight Kings" card stack.
- Method of teach the Pig – from Letter I. to IX. See also Letter V. Appendix
- Principles of the Acoustic Temple – from Letter IX. To XIV. See also Letter II. Appendix.
- A Demonstration of the philosophical Swan – Letter XV.
- A Demonstration of the Manner how a Gun is to be discharged at a Person previously loaded with Powder and Ball, the Person catching the Ball on the Point of a Dagger – Letter XV. See also Letter II. Appendix.
- A Demonstration how a Card fastened to a Table with a Fork changes its situation – Letter XVII.
- A Demonstration how Knives and Forks are swallowed – ditto.
- A Demonstration of the Manner of breaking a Watch and restoring it to its former State – ditto.
- A Demonstration how Eggs are transformed into Pan-Cakes – Letter XVIII.
- How Dollars apparently sink through a Table – ditto.
- Reflections on Ventriloquism – ditto.
- Abilities necessary to a Performer of the Art of Legerdemain – Letter XX.
- Further Opinions on Ventriloquism – Letter XXII.
- How to take a Number of Eggs from a Bag apparently empty – Letter XXIV.
- How to make the Ace of Hearts become the Ace of Clubs, and vice versa – ditto.
- How to burn a Card to Ashes, and restore it to its former State – ditto.
- How to light a Candle with the Point of a Sword – ditto.
- How to transfer Money from one Handkerchief to another – ditto.
- How to fire a Lady’s Ring from a Gun in such a Manner, that the same shall be found confined under Lock and Key, one of the Company taking the Key – Letter XXV.
- How to make a Handkerchief belonging to one of the Company follow the Exhibitor out of the Room – Letter XXVIII.
- How to convey a Card into an Egg – ditto.
- Magnetic optical Spy-Glass – Letter XXIX. Penetrating optical Spy-Glass – Letter XXIX. Physiognotrace – Letter XXIX.
- Observations on the Situation of an Author – Letter IV. Appendix
- Reflections on the dangerous Tendency of Superstition – Letter V. Appendix.
1st edition 1805, 100 pages; PDF 58 pages.
word count: 17861 which is equivalent to 71 standard pages of text