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Ramo Samee

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Ramo Samee

Cover of Sphinx (02/1938)

Ramo Samee (Ramosamee) (?-1850) was a 19th century, sword-swallower, fire-eater, juggler and magician who starred with his own juggling troupe.


Samee performed mainly in Europe from about 1810 to 1844 and did a tour of the United States in 1819. His troupe included Kia Khan Khruse (fl. 1810-1820) for a period of time.

He is known to have performed at a benefit on February 28, 1825 at the Adelphi Theatre, and in August 1842 at the Theatre Royal. Charles Dickens interest in conjuring may have been aroused by seeing Ramo Samee, who appeared on the same programme as Dickens's own play Nicholas Nickleby on 28th December, 1838.[1]

In the 1840's Samee was apparently swallowing beads and horse hair separately and then regurgitating the former threaded upon the latter.[2] Someone in America suggested to Ramo Samee that the trick would be more striking if done with needles, which may have been the birth of the Needle Trick.[3]

According to a London press clipping, Samee died in late August, 1850 and was buried between August 28 and September 1, 1850 in London. He died broke, and his wife was forced to advertise for financial assistance to pay for his burial expenses.[4][5][6]


  1. 27. KIA KHAN KHRUSE AND THE BULLET CATCH,A Rich Cabinet of Magical Curiosities by EDWIN A. DAWES
  2. The unmasking of Robert-Houdin by Harry Houdini (1908)
  3. Cyclopedia of Magic by Henry Hay (1949)