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Levitation of Princess Karnac

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Levitation of Princess Karnac was a floating lady illusion presented by Harry Kellar to American audiences in 1904.
Keller Poster

A girl that floats upwards from a couch, on a brightly lit stage, has a hoop passed around her body to prove that no wires are used.

It was first perfected by John Nevil Maskelyne for his Egyptian Hall in England in 1900.

Kellar tried to buy the illusion for his shows just after Maskelyne premiered it, but he wouldn't sell. So Kellar hired Paul Valadon away from Maskelyne to learn the secret and produced his own version.[1]

Later versions were performed by Howard Thurston (who took over Kellar's show), Charles Carter (who hired Kellar's former stage manager-mechanic, Fritz Bucha), Carter the Great and Blackstone.


  1. Glorious Deception by Jim Steinmeyer (2005)