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Francis Carlyle

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See also: Carlyle (1906-1996).

Francis Carlyle (1911 - 1975) was known for developing the one-hand turnover (paddle move) with business and playing cards. [1] [2]

Francis Carlyle
BornFrancis Xavier Finneran
September 17, 1912
Boston, Massachusetts
DiedDecember 27, 1975 (age 63)
Hollywood, California
Resting placeForest Lawn Memorial Park
Dai Vernon frequently mentioned Carlyle with admiration for his ability to make his effects crystal clear to spectators.

Later in life, he was known to have a drinking problem and his bookings as a magician became infrequent because of his unreliability. Things got so bad that his wife left him. Many nights while working at the Kiwi, a bar in Greenwich Village, he ended up sleeping there. He also began losing his vision.

He was brought to the West Coast by friends where he was straightened out for a bit and his magical talents were once again were brought to light. Soon, Carlyle became a regular entertainer in the close-up room at the Magic Castle. Sadly, he just couldn't stay away from the bottle. He worsened until he was not responsible for his actions. Even his best friends tried to steer clear. He finally had to be barred from The Castle which he loved.[3]

Eventually, he had been admitted to a hospital in Hollywood, California as a "John Doe" case after being found unconscious and helpless (most likely from the drinking he was battling with for years). After a few weeks he was transferred to convalescent center where he never improved and eventually died.

Roger Pierre wrote The Magic of Francis Carlyle (1975).[4]

Carlyle made four contributions to the Stars of Magic, Series 4, 1948, Inc. series of tricks including:

  • "Decapitation" a effect using paper matches
  • "Homing Card"
  • "Wrist Watch Steal"
  • "Travelling Coin"


  1. Obit Genii 1976 February
  • The Linking Ring, December 1993, MEMORIES OF FRIENDS PAST AND PRESENT by David Lederman, page 62