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Highman Palatine

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Highman Palatine
BornHighman Palatine
DiedFebruary 5, 1802
Bristol, United Kingdom

Highman Palatine (fl. 1760-1802) performed around England and Scotland and is famous for the trial of skill held in 1788 between him and Monsieur Bouvelard, at the Bush Tavern, in Bristol (UK).


Highman Palatine’s nationality is unknown, although it is commonly believed that he was a German. He sometimes (and in his earlier years) advertised himself as a "High-German". His first known reference can be found in a brief article published in 1760 in a Newcastle newspaper, where we discover that the conjurer had given an exhibition for the benefit of the local Infirmary and had donated the revenue to this Charity.

In 1762 his show was witnessed and recounted by a young James Woodforde (now famous for his diaries). Palatine performed around England and even in Scotland. Famous is the trial of skill held in 1788 between him and the other magician Monsieur Bouvelard, at the Bush Tavern, in Bristol (UK). Besides being an illusionist, Palatine was also a silversmith. As a silversmith, he was declared bankrupt in 1769. Married at least twice, with sons, he signed a will a few days before his death occurred on the 5th February 1802. Some author believed that the Italian magician Tomaso Palatino (aka Thomas Peladine) was the same Highman Palatine who had moved from continental Europe to England and subsequently slightly changed his name. In reality, the two were different performers.


  • Pietro Micheli, "They lived by tricks – Palatino, Palatine, Breslaw and Boaz", published by the author, Italy, 2012, pp. 28-64.
  • Pietro Micheli, Woodforde’s favourite conjuror, in “Parson Woodforde Society Quarterly Journal”, Vol. XLVI, n° 1, Spring 2013, pp. 4-10.