A Partial Bibliography on Juggling

Period Sources

Actual period sources are rare, I only know of one:
The Art of Iugling [Juggling] or Legerdemaine by Samuel Rid, to be sold by him in his shop in London, 1612. To get this manuscript, go to a University with a U.S. Govt. Doc. Microfilm Collection and ask for Reel 971, Cat# 21027, Pr 1121.U6, MiU F63-378. Grainy photocopies of microfilm of nearly illegible blackletter calligraphy of Old English grammar and spelling make this difficult reading, but it's worth the effort.

History of Juggling

Juggling: The Art and Its Artists by Karl-Heinz Ziethen & Andrew Allen, 1986, Rausch & Luft Pub., ISBN 3-9801140-1-5, $69.00. Karl wrote a book in French, which translates as The Complete History of Juggling. Unfortunately :-( it's in French, 1,000+ pages, $200.00+, and only available from France by custom order! Andrew talked him into publishing the American version listed here. Unfortunately, the former title is very misleading. It's a coffee table book for mundanes. I'd suggest getting it from the library. By the tenth page, it's showing old photos of vaudeville acts from the 1940's. The few pages devoted to our time period are woefully inadequate. A photo of: a statue of a juggler labelled "Baked Clay, Thuben, c.200 BC"; an Egyptian mural labelled "Egyptian Wall Painting, c.2040 BC"; and portions of two scrolls showing performers labelled "Medieval Manuscripts" That's it! No dates, no museums, no bibliographies, nothing!

4,000 Years of Juggling History by Karl-Heinz Ziethen I don't have publishers info for it, it was published in Europe. I suspect it's the same book as above under a different title.

Street Magic -- An Illustrated History of Wandering Magicians and Their Conjuring Arts by Edward Claflin and Jeff Sheridan, Doubleday and Co., ISBN 0-385-12864-9, $5.95. The title pretty much says it all. Their research was done from period sources. Well written, well documented and lots of photographs of museum pieces and manuscripts. If you only use one book from this list, it has to be this one!

Juggling Technique

The Juggler's Handbook by Bob Stone, Spiritwood Publishing, ISBN 0-9611928-0-1, $12.95. This one contains something I've never seen anywhere else, Juggling Notation. Juggling notation is to juggling what musical notation is to music, a set of symbols for writing down how to do a sequence.

Juggling with Finesse by Kit Summers, Finesse Press, ISBN 0-938981-00-5, $14.95. An American success story, Kit Summers is two time winner of the International Jugglers Association World Championship. The second time was AFTER he had been hit by a truck and told he would never leave his hospital bed.

The Juggling Book by Carlo, Random House, ISBN 0-394-71956-5, $6.95. Carlo is a juggler for Barnum and Bailey Circus, nuff said!

The Complete Juggler by Dave Finnigan, Random House, ISBN 0-394-74678-3. No price listed on my copy. I'm normally sceptical of any book that calls itself _The Complete "X"_. In my opinion, "X" has to be at least a dozen words to define a field of knowledge narrow enough to covered completely in one book. This one however, comes real close. The author is a former president of IJA and there's enough tricks here to keep a juggler going for years. For those who like to compare their performance against others, the book contains the Official Rank Requirements of the IJA, ie, what you have to be able to do to earn the next rank.


Hand Shadows & Hand Shadows II I can't get my paws on these at the moment, so I can't give you author, price or ISBN, but they're both available from the Dover Pub. children's books catalog. They're just what they sound like, illustrated books on how to cast shadow pictures on the wall.

I have utterly no documentation for the history hand shadows, and neither does Wikipedia. However, it should be noted that Shadow Puppetry dates back to the Han Dynasty of China (205 BC to 220AD) and I can't imagine parents not figuring out a few for their children. The art form declined in 19th century America because the new electric lights don't project good sharply outlined shadows.

By the by, I'd recommend getting the Dover catalog, it's free. Write to: Dover Pub., 180 Varick St., N.Y., N.Y. 10014. Specify your fields of interest and ask for the general catalog as well.