Old Juggling Prop Catalogs – Part 5 – Charles De Vere Catalog

In 2016, I wrote a series of eJuggle articles showing prop catalogs from the 1880s to the 1940s. You can click here, here, here, and here to see them. Here is another very old catalog from France, The De Vere Juggling Props Catalog.

Charles De Vere

Charles De Vere (Herbert Shakespeare Gardiner Williams) (1843-1931) was a British magician who opened a magic shop in Paris, France in 1892. He also sold a wide variety of juggling props. The catalog shown here isn’t dated, but it is believed to be from the early 1900s. Many thanks to Olivier Caignart for helping me obtain it and for providing the English translation that I’ve provided here.

Here’s a translation of the previous page. Some prices have not been included, as they are obvious.

Author’s note: Boule refers to a plain ball, and Balle to an empty ball

Author’s note: Id means idem, the same


Juggling Props, made by De Vere

Nickel coated copper balls, fig 2, diameter 50 or 55. 4 francs a piece

60 or 65, 70 or 75

These balls are made heavier or lighter in accordance to the demand of the client

Balls in light “papier maché,” well decorated, fig 3

Balls, in rubber, price according diameter

Balls “lawn tennis,” Kara, Cinquevalli style. A dozen for 18 francs (these balls can come in any color)

Knives, fig 4, blades in polished steel, several models, collars in copper, handles in varnished black hard wood, heavy or light

Torches, fig 5, in several models, tube comes in nickel coated brass for the flame, handle in varnished black hard wood, very nice prop, for ladies. A piece, 4 francs

Torches, bigger, heavier, for men, 5 francs

Torches, new kind – While juggling you can produce flames from the torch at will. 15 francs a piece

Torches, Electric – This torch has an electric lamp at its end. Juggling with it in darkness has a really strong effect. Color of the lamp in accordance with request. Starting from 25 francs a piece

Spin tops, fig 6, to “walk” on a string to climb a rope (OR) mounted on a rope – great Japanese model

Here’s a translation of the previous page. Some prices have not been included, as they are obvious.

Bilboquets (cup sticks) fig 7, copper, handle made of wood in strong copper and nickel plated, great quality article

Rings, in copper nickel plated, 20cm in diameter

Rings 25 cm in diameter

Lamps, fig 8, ring shape to spin on an umbrella

Lamps, fig 9, in every model and price

Lamp (candlestick), fig 10, in copper nickel plated, with a candle

Coins, fig 11, imitation, in silvered metal, a dozen

Umbrellas, in transparent silk, genuine Japanese prop

Umbrellas, in cotton

Billiard Balls, for the trick with pockets, white or red… a dozen

Billiard balls, bigger

Revolvers, 5 shots, for juggling, made with care… a piece or by 3

Eggs, in celluloid, a dozen

Goblets, in polished copper, the set of 3

Goblets, nickel

Cigar Boxes, set up for comedy juggling

Candelabra, for juggler, 3 candles, 4 candles

Here’s a translation of the previous page. Some prices have not been included, as they are obvious.

Props for Juggling

Plates, fig 12, in zinc, conical centers, to spin with a stick, painted, imitating porcelain

Plates, nickel plated copper

Plates, Very strong

Plates, in porcelain, conical centers with rounded bottom, 20 to 25cm diameter

Plates, 30 to 35cm

Plates, porcelain, to throw

Plates, nickel plated copper

Bricks, fig 13, in hard wood, well made, very square, a dozen

Clubs, fig 14, in black wood, polished, very light, comes in set of 4

Clubs, stronger, with silvered metal bands, set of 4, starting from 75 francs

Clubs, lighted, with electric light inside, several colors. Starting from 50 francs a piece

Sticks, fig 15, for balls, eggs, etc.

Sticks, to spin a hat, plates, etc…

Sticks, fig 16, with biloboquet in nickel pated copper, to make a billiard ball appear and disappear, used by Mesphisto

Sticks, to balance one on top of another

Sticks, fig 17, to spin a scarf

Sticks, fig 18, to balance an egg

Here’s a translation of the previous page. Some prices have not been included, as they are obvious.

The Stick and billiard balls. The Artist juggles first with 3 balls, and then balance one ball on top of the other on the end of the billiard cue and then put the cue on his forehead, etc…

Big guns, for balance, with or without bayonet

The Hoop and the glass. The Artist fills a glass with water or wine, puts it in a hoop, makes it spin in every direction without spilling a drop.

The Devil (Diablo), for juggler, a stick with two handsticks.

The Japanese Butterflies, complete set, with fan and all accessories

The Propeller, one spins one or several paper wheels with a fan

Aerial top set (or game), with 2 handsticks, one in each hand, make a top spin, throw it in the air, etc..

Balance an egg on a straw

Japanese Lamp, hanging from the ceiling with a string, a top climbs the string, the lamp opens and transforms in a temple of flowers, a rain of golden papers and colored ribbons coming out of it. Very elegant article.

Japanese Lamp, bigger

The Tube and the peacock feather

The Snake, a Trewey Trick. The Artist shakes a big ribbon, several meters long, that wraps his face (very nice effect)

The Japanese Box (De Vere Invention) The artist juggles with 5 small boards, makes a box out of them, and produces a great number of objects like: balls, ribbons, scarfs, flags, flowers, pigeons.

Price of the box without accessories


The transformation bottle. After juggling with a bottle, the Artists transforms it into 2 bunches of flowers

The Pagoda, to balance on the forehead or chin, with little colored flags of every nations, on poles

The boat, while balancing on forehead or chin at the end of a stick, decorate it with lots of beautiful flags, make the cannon shoot several times, ending with explosion and illumination with Bengal light. Splendid effect.

Clown hat, to spin or throw

Here’s a translation of the previous page. Some prices have not been included, as they are obvious.


To present jugglers props

Folding pedestal table to travel, fig 19,

covered with sheet, golden feet

covered in velvet, fringed

solid copper nickel plated, rich ornaments

Pedestal for theaters, circus, etc, fig 21, in steel and strong nickel plated copper, with stands for props

Japanese style, price according the richness of decoration

Middle table, with stands for props and decorations, with behind large flags, large fans, electric lamps, and on the front, drapery with trimmings in gold and glitter, initials of the artist. Everything made light and portable.

Props for comical jugglers

Flags of every nations, every size, in paper, cotton, and silk

Varnished papers of every color.


David Cain is a professional juggler, juggling historian, and the owner of the world's only juggling museum, the Museum of Juggling History. He is a Guinness world record holder and 16 time IJA gold medalist. In addition to his juggling pursuits, David is a successful composer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and singer as well as the author of twenty-six books. He and his children live in Middletown, OH (USA).

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