The Discoverie of Witchcraft is recognised in the magic world as the first ever magic book ever written. The author, Reginald Scott, was a judge in the witch trials of the 17 th century. In his bid to discover if witchcraft was actually true he discovers that so called " magic " is little more than trickery and subterfuge. As a full time professional magician I was amazed to discover card tricks described in this book which I assumed were new but are at least 400 years old. There is also a description of how a magician in the 1600s convinces his audience he has the power to kill someone. The magician draws a picture of a pigeon and stabs the picture vigorously with a knife. The pigeon on top of a church drops down dead. The magician uses this evidence to convince the onlookers that he truly has the power of life and death over all creatures.Reginald Scott then goes on to describe how this trick is done. Apparently, you need a confederate who balances a dead pigeon on a church spire attached to a long thread.At a given signal, the thread is pulled dislodging the said pigeon!
The book is written in 16 century English which gives it a period feel.The book is text only and does not include any pictures, however, it is a truly fascinating read.