The Key-ring Trick.
This trick is of the class which requires two persons — a swindler, A, and a dupe, B.
A passes the loop through a ring and places it extended on B's thumbs or indices, held upright (Fig. 2). Taking hold of one
string he loops it over the thumb on the other side of the ring, placing it on the proximal side of the loop-end already on that thumb. He then detaches this loop-end, at the same time pulling the ring with the other hand. The ring comes off, leaving the loop on B's thumbs. Or, when detaching the distal loop-end from B's thumb, A may direct B to extend the loop. A then simultaneously drops the detached string and the ring falls on the floor (Fig. 3).
I think I got this trick from a boy's book about 1875. ^^• Oldham, of King's College, Cambridge, showed me a method identical with that of the button-hole trick previously described, the ring, of course, taking the place of the button-hole.
The above method, unless skilfully done, betrays its secret. The following way of doing the trick is not open to this objection :
We shall call the string nearest to B, B string, and the other A string.
With the middle finger of the right hand A hooks up B string and draws it across above A string. With the right index he raises A string on its proper side of B, a little above the level of the