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Wilfrid Jonson

(Croydon, Surrey, England: 17th September 1899 - 21st January 1974)

Semi-pro since 1925, then pro. Edited the 2 issues of George Johnson's The Magical News (1924). Co-authored (with Harry Leat) Masked Magical Glossary (1928, 31pp), an eccentric effort to disguise 200 familiar jargon terms under a layer of their newly coined terms.

Wrote "London Notes" column for Sphinx since 1930. Wrote Mr. Smith's Guide to Sleight of Hand (1945, 95pp), But Not to Play (1946, 120pp), Conjuring (1950, 96pp), Card Conjuring (1950, 92pp), the last two being reprinted in USA by Dover as Wilfrid Johnson's Magic Tricks (1953, 100pp) and Wilfrid Johnson's Card Tricks (1953, 96pp) that were and finally in combined volume as Magic Tricks and Card Tricks (1954, 100+96pp; repr 1957). Tricks in Magic Wand.

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Wilfrid Jonson

Mr. Smith's Guide to Sleight of Hand by Wilfrid JonsonThis guide is written in an unusual style, a conversational style, where each lesson starts with "Dear Mr. Smith", like a letter to a fictional student. This feature makes it a very readable and valuable course. In the introduction Jonson writes:
The guide is presented to the reader in the form of a course of personal instruction and the majority of the sleights and tricks are described according to the manner in which I have myself performed them. A number of individual touches and personal inventions have been introduced which I consider to be improvements on previously published methods....
2018 / 1 / 21

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