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Rebecca is the classic Hitchcock gothic thriller and a compelling mystery and haunting ghost story about a tortured romance. An expensively-produced film by David O. The somber film's screenplay by Robert E. Sherwood and Joan Harrison was based on a literal translation of Daphne du Maurier's gothic novel of the same name, in the tradition of Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre.
The film's posters asked the intriguing questions: The film creates a brooding atmosphere surrounding the tragic courtship, marriage and relationship of a naive, plain and innocent young woman Joan Fontaine to a brooding and overburdened widower - an aristocratic, moody patriarch Laurence Olivier who lives in an estate named Manderley.
The woman was unnamed as in the novel, but in early drafts of the original script, the heroine's name was Daphne - after Daphne du Maurier. Only by film's end, with the flaming destruction of the estate, do the real character and secrets of Rebecca's death become clear. Many well-known actresses tested for the part of the young woman - Loretta Young, Margaret Sullavan, Anne Baxter and Vivien Leigh her role in Gone With the Wind made her participation impossible , and Ronald Colman was also considered for the male lead role.
Last night, I dreamt I went to Manderley again. It seemed to me I stood by the iron gate leading to the drive, and for a while I could not enter for the way was barred to me. Then, like all dreamers, I was possessed of a sudden with supernatural powers and passed like a spirit through the barrier before me.
The drive wound away in front of me, twisting and turning as it has always done. But as I advanced, I was aware that a change had come upon it. Nature had come into her own again, and little by little had encroached upon the drive with long tenacious fingers, on and on while the poor thread that had once been our drive. And finally, there was Manderley - Manderley - secretive and silent. Time could not mar the perfect symmetry of those walls.
Moonlight can play odd tricks upon the fancy, and suddenly it seemed to me that light came from the windows. And then a cloud came upon the moon and hovered an instant like a dark hand before a face. The illusion went with it. I looked upon a desolate shell, with no whisper of the past about its staring walls. We can never go back to Manderley again.
That much is certain. But sometimes, in my dreams, I do go back to the strange days of my life which began for me in the south of France In the picture's prologue during the narration, the camera pauses at the tall iron gates of Manderley, an English country mansion, and then moves through them.
The camera then twists up the drive that has become overgrown with underbrush and foliage. At the end of the drive, the camera tracks to the right through Manderley. The mansion's gutted, forbidding, burned-out ruins are seen silhouetted in a shrouded mist, viewed in shadow and moonlight.
The narrator begins in flashback to tell the story of "the strange days" of her life. On a rocky coast where waves crash against the rock cliffs, the camera pans left and then up to a well-dressed man wearing a dark black suit who stands at the cliff's edge, staring out at the sea and appearing distracted.
When he moves toward the edge, the narrator - an attractive blond young woman Joan Fontaine walking nearby shouts toward him, fearing he is on the verge of suicide: What the devil are you shouting about? What are you staring at? I'm sorry, I didn't mean to stare, but I, I only thought Oh, you did, did you? Well, what are you doing here?
I was only walking. Well, get on with your walking and don't hang about here screaming. The plain, shy, naive, and innocent young woman unnamed in the film until she is married and adopts her husband's name is on an off-season trip to Southern France Monte Carlo - the French Riviera as a traveling "paid companion" with her wealthy dowager Mrs.
In the lobby of the vacation-resort hotel, Mrs. Van Hopper is upset that there is not a single "well-known personality" to be seen. She is relieved to recognize "Max de Winter" Laurence Olivier , a dashing Britisher of Manderley estate - and the man from the cliffside - and invites him as one of her "old friends" to have coffee with them. Although the elegant gentleman de Winter converses with the older woman, who absurdly strives to be accepted in the fashionable social circles of the Continent, he appears interested in speaking to the young woman but she is totally dominated and controlled by the matron.
When he finds an opportunity, he asks what she thinks of Monte Carlo, to which she responds in a forward way: On their way to their rooms, Mrs. Van Hopper scolds her companion for being too assertive, and then suggests that the man's apparent adoration for his late wife is the reason for widower de Winter's aloof, brooding and haunted nature: By the way, my dear, don't think that I mean to be unkind, but you were just a teeny, weeny bit forward with Mr.
Your effort to enter the conversation quite embarrassed me and I'm sure it did him. Men loathe that sort of thing. Oh come, don't sulk. After all, I am responsible for your behavior here. Perhaps he didn't notice it. I suppose he just can't get over his wife's death. They say he simply adored her. During lunch in the Princesse Hotel's dining room, while Mrs. Van Hopper is ill in bed with a cold, the nervous young woman, who has just awkwardly tipped over a flower vase at her own table, is invited to dine with the older, debonair Mr.
The young woman explains her employment as a "paid companion" to Mrs. Van Hopper, a job she took after her father, a painter, died the previous summer her mother died years earlier.
You see, he had a theory that if you should find one perfect thing or place or person, you should stick to it. He speaks of his home back in Cornwall - Manderley, and while she tries to divert his attention with small talk, her choice of subjects is even more troubling: To me, it's just the place where I was born and I've lived in all my life.
But now, I don't suppose I shall ever see it again. Young Woman changing the subject: Well, we're lucky not to, uh, be home during the bad weather, aren't we?
I-I can't ever remember enjoying swimming in England till June, can you? The water's so warm here that I could stay in all day. There's a dangerous undertow and there's a man who drowned here last year. I never have any fear of drowning. De Winter turns his back and walks away. Come, I'll take you home. In the hotel the next day, the young woman enters her suite and overhears Mrs.
Van Hopper explaining to a nurse about de Winter's late wife Rebecca, who was killed in a tragic boating accident: Oh yes, I know Mr. I knew his wife too. Before she married him, she was the beautiful Rebecca Hindreth, you know. She was drowned, poor dear, when she was sailing near Manderley. He never talks about it, of course, but he's a broken man. That night during her restless sleep, the young woman hears over and over again Mrs.
Van Hopper's words about Rebecca and the mourning de Winter: They say he simply adored her I suppose he just can't get over his wife's death But he's a broken man. During their courtship, the young woman is invited on more drives in de Winter's car. Van Hopper can't understand why Maxim hasn't returned her own phone calls or answered her notes. The cranky woman sits in her sick bed, gorging herself on chocolates and extinguishing her cigarette in a jar of cold cream - revealing her vulgarity and petulance.
On one of their drives, the young woman reveals how he has brought her happiness, but the mysterious man treats her both brusquely and condescendingly: You know, I, I wish there could be an invention that bottled up the memory like perfume and it never faded never got stale.
Then whenever I wanted to, I could uncork the bottle and, and live the memory all over again. And what particular moment in your young life would you want to keep? Oh, all of them. All these last few days. I-I feel as though I've, I've collected a whole shelf full of bottles. Sometimes, you know, those little bottles contain demons. They have a way of popping out at you, just as you're trying most desperately to forget.
Feeling put down, the young woman starts biting her nails. Stop biting your nails! Oh, I wish I were a woman of thirty-six, dressed in black satin with a string of pearls. Laughs You wouldn't be here with me if you were. Would you please tell me, Mr.
President, so that the top two finishers in the primary regardless of party affiliation go on to the ballot in the fall general election. In July , Taitz sued to block the certification of the primary election results, alleging "rampant election fraud"; she also alleged Obama engaged in "identity fraud.
In October , Taitz tried to revive her election lawsuit by asking the court to compel Occidental College to produce student records for President Barack Obama, who attended Occidental from to Taitz filed paperwork indicating her intent to become the California Attorney General in the blanket primary. Taitz came in sixth out of seven candidates in the primary, with approximately 3. Taitz has also actively promoted her theories in Israel, where she claims that "the vast majority" of the population supports her views.
Israel's Russian-language media, such as Channel 9 and Vesti , the country's largest Russian-language newspaper, have also covered Taitz. Taitz received media attention in connection with Obama eligibility questions in late In response, she and pastor James David Manning organized a protest outside Fox News headquarters in New York City in November , which drew an estimated 15 to 20 attendees.
When Taitz only wanted to talk about Obama's alleged Selective Service papers and refused to comment on his birth certificate, O'Donnell kicked her off the show, stating: I invited a crazy person on this show to see if the crazy person From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Barack Obama citizenship conspiracy theories. Order Denying Orly Taitz's Recusal. California Secretary of State election, United States Senate election in California, California Attorney General election, Retrieved August 10, The Orange County Register.
Official Voter Information Guide. Secretary of State of California. Condon, Stephanie June 9, Retrieved August 15, Retrieved August 13, Retrieved August 11, Retrieved June 5, Attorney gains notoriety for strange challenges of Obama's citizenship". Check date values in: The State Bar of California.
Retrieved April 29, Retrieved February 14, Retrieved March 23, Retrieved May 6, Archived from the original PDF on May 28, Retrieved September 26, Archived from the original PDF on January 11, San Jose Mercury News.
Retrieved September 27, Archived from the original on September 22, Orly Taitz, Part II". Connie Rhodes says she had never agreed to an appeal, says Rhodes will file complaint against attorney Orly Taitz". Archived from the original on September 23, Archived from the original on October 16, Retrieved February 12, Supreme Court of the United States.
Supreme Court rejects appeal from 'birther' attorney Orly Taitz". Archived from the original on December 15, Archived from the original on March 22, New Hampshire Union Leader. Retrieved January 24, Archived from the original on January 27, Archived from the original PDF on May 13, Archived from the original on February 5, Hawaiian Memorial Park Mortuary , case no.
District Court for the District of Hawaii. Immigration lawsuit won't be moved, combined". Retrieved May 4, Archived from the original on May 14, Archived from the original on May 15, Retrieved June 21, In an initiation ceremony, added Mr. Chinnery, the men pushed lengths of flexible cane into their throats until the cane reached their stomachs.
Then, reeds are forced up their nostrils and their tongues are stabbed until their blood has been sufficiently purified. There was a video documentary filmed in the s or 80s on this initiation rite of passage, showing many of the canes or vines being removed from the young men's throats covered in blood.
It was reported that several of the initiates die each year from the perforations. TopsMagazine article June Matausa cane swallowing. Swordswallowers are mentioned in AD during the Teutonic fight for Rome. The art and practice of sword swallowing traveled north from India into China around AD.
Sword swallowing was popular in Japan in the 8th century and was often seen as part of an acrobatic form of entertainment known as Sangaku , which also featured juggling, tightrope walking, contortion, and other related skills. This type of performance art was "street theater" and the performers traveled throughout Japan. Sangaku, like other forms of drama popular in Japan prior to the 11th century, traced its origins to southern China and India. Japanese engraving Japanese Sword Swallower.
Dervish is Persian for "beggar. Some are religious entertainers hired to chant the zikr dirge, and some only perform Dervish ceremonies on special occasions. Dervishes are known for working themselves into frenzies and committing great feats of strength this is where we get the term "Whirling Dervishes". One of the Dervish orders founded in was the order of Rifais who eat glass, walk on hot coals, and swallow swords. Ancient sword swallower from Hittite Period in Anatolia.
Sword swallowing spread north from Greece and Rome into Europe at the hands of medieval jongleurs and other street performers who performed in public areas. In the Middle Ages, sword swallowers, like magicians, jugglers and other entertainers, were often condemed and persecuted by the Catholic Church. Still, in most places they were popular by the common folk, and the tradition of the wandering entertainer remained strong.
By the midth century, performers wandered more freely and became common sights on street corners and at festivals across Europe. Sword swallowing began to die out in Europe and Scandinavia in the late s, when variety shows were formally outlawed in Sweden in Sword Swallower on display Croix, Sept 26 It was through the good offices of a sword-swallower that the Scotch physician, Dr.
Edward Stevens , was enabled to make his experiments on digestion in As part of his research, Dr. Stevens had a sword swallower swallow small metallic tubes pierced with holes. They were filled, according to Reaumer's method, with pieces of meat. After a certain length of time, he would have the sword swallower disgorge the tubes, and in this way he observed to what degree the process of digestion had taken place.
It was also probably the sword-swallower who showed the physicians to what extent the pharynx could be habituated to contract, and from this resulted the invention of the tube of Faucher , the esophageal sound, lavage of the stomach, and illumination of this organ by electric light.
Stevens ' father, Thomas , a prosperous merchant, was reputedly also the father of Alexander Hamilton. Nothing is known of his mother. In his youth, Stevens moved with his family to New York. It removed the confusion and contradictions presented in the doctrines of fermentation and trituration, the latter championed by Leeuwenhoek, Borelli, Pitcairn, and Pecquet, and decried by Astruc and Stephen Hales.
It also repudiated such views as those of John Pringle and David Macbride. Stevens confirmed this, isolated human gastric juice, and performed experiments both in vitro and in vivo in man and animals. Stevens was admitted to the Royal Medical Society Edinburgh on 20 January , and served as its president in and At Edinburgh he was awarded the Harveian prize for an experimental inquiry on the red color of the blood.
He returned to St. Croix about and practiced medicine there for ten years. In Stevens moved to Philadelphia. On 18 April he was admitted to the American Philosophical Society, and the following year he was appointed professor of the practice of medicine in King's College later Columbia University. It is probable that Stevens ' presence and reputation in Philadelphia, as well as his contributions in gastric physiology, contributed to the marked interest in gastric studies that took place round the turn of the century in that city.
Of these studies, that of John R. He undoubtedly was familiar with Stevens ' work; indeed, his experiments with bullfrogs and small frogs are reminiscent of Stevens ' observations of partially digested small fish inside larger ones.
Stevens was United States consul-general in Santo Domingo from to His consular dispatches to Timothy Pickering, Adams, Jefferson, and other leaders, revealing a critical, observant mind, outlined the geopolitical problems facing the United States in the Caribbean at that time. Controversy marred his political life, however, and he returned to the United States in He made appearances at the American Philosophical Society meetings in and , probably returning to St.
Little is known of Stevens ' last years. David Hosack wrote to him in St. Croix on yellow fever in , and in he wrote Hosack a letter introducing his son, who had also graduated at Edinburgh.
Stevens ' fundamental and sound gastric studies were confirmed by Spallanzani, who augmented and added to them in masterly fashion, assuring that from then on, gastric physiology would be a well-founded science.
Sena Sama also spelled Senaa Samma from Madras. Tamil Nadu, India was reported to be the first known sword swallower in America. An article dated November 11, reports, "Senaa Samma appeared at St. John's Hall in New York City in a lovely exhibition of juggling and sword swallowing. The newspaper account said that he swallowed "a sword manufactured by Mr. William Pye of New York as a substitute for the one lately stolen from him by some villain.
Sama is mentioned in both " Annals of the American Circus, Vol. In , the book " Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society " mentions that sword swallower Sena Sama came to New York and swallowed a sword that measured 22 inches long. Could this have been Ramo Samee or one of his troupe from Madras and London? Seeking pictures and more information. Ramo Samee probably " Ramaswamy " was a 19th century East Indian juggler and magician who starred with his own juggling troupe.
In fact, he is considered to be the first "modern" professional juggler, and was by far the most famous juggler of his time. Samee was born around in East India, possibly in Madras in Tamil Nadu, and was brought to England in at around the age of A certain Captain Campbell , returning to England from the Indian colony in , brought a troupe of Indian magicians and performers with him and installed them in Pall Mall Street London, where they demonstrated native juggling, acrobatics, yogic postures, conjuring, and sleight of hand for an audience that was curious about the quaint customs and strange manners of India.
Is it then a trifling power we see at work, or is it something next to miraculous? The inspiration for one of the Western world's fundamental puzzlers, the Needle Swallowing Trick , can probably be traced back to the genius of Ramo Samee. Samee was known for performing a trick he called "Stringing Beads With the Mouth", in which he "swallowed" a handful of beads and a string, then pulled the beads out of his mouth, one by one, tied to the string.
Samee 's troupe included Kia Khan Khruse , another Indian juggler-magician who first introduced the " Needle Swallowing Trick " to European audiences in Obviously, this was a more dangerous version of Samee 's bead swallowing trick. Samee first presented the Indian needle trick to Western audiences in the 's, where he would swallow a hundred needles.
Samee performed in England from to , with successful tours of the eastern United States in , and again in An advertisement in the Salem Gazette of October 5, , describes the "East Indian" magician and juggler Ramo Samee as having performed "for some time past in the metropolis of England, and before all the crowned heads of Europe, who have unanimously pronounced him to be the first master of the art in their dominions.
Samee also performed on January 15, at the Royal Coburg Theatre. In , Frederick Gye employed sword swallower Ramo Samee as the "chief attraction" at the Royal Gardens Vauxhall Theatre in Kensington, one of the leading venues for public entertainment in London from the midth century to the midth century. In the 's Samee created a sensation at the Garrick Theatre in London by performing his feat of swallowing beads and horse hair separately and then regurgitating the former threaded upon the latter.
According to an article published in Robert Merry's Museum on January 1, Before the arrival in Europe of these jugglers, whose speculation, it is said, was most profitable, attempts had been made, but unsuccessfully, to induce other professors of the art to go to England for the purpose of exhibition. According to London press clippings , Ramo Samee died a pauper at the age of 59 on August 21, According to an obituary in the The Gentlemen's Magazine , Volume City-road, in extreme poverty, Ramo Samee , a celebrated Indian juggler.
His health had received a severe shock at the death of his only son, who, in attempting to swallow a sword, did himself such injury that he died shortly afterwards. His body was interred in old St. Your early insertion of the widow's appeal, under the above head, in last week's paper, reflects the highest credit on you, and in remembrance of the plesure I experienced in the early days at his performance, I beg to hand you 10s from ten friends, collected in the neighbourhood of High Holborn, towards alleviating the sufferings of the poor widow and family Poor Ramo is to be buried today, and his funeral expenses have to be defrayed by instalments.
The trifle obtained has been handed to Mrs. Pancras , Middlesex, London, England. Ramo Samee Timeline Born in East India Arrives in London, performs at Pall Mall Street Jan 12, 18, 29, Feb 8: Olympic Theatre London Royalty Theatre London Royal Coburg Theatre London Royal Gardens Vauxhall Theatre London Last appearance at Vauxhall Gardens London Adelphi Theatre London New Strand Subscription Theatre London Royal Victoria Theatre London Royal Beulah Spa Norwood s: Garrick Theatre London Theatre Royal London Robert Merry's Museum London Son died of sword swallowing injury According to broadside scrapbooks kept by William Hay in England, one broadside announces the arrival of 'Saib Khan Ing' in Preston in to 'exhibit his astonishing performances' at juggling, sword swallowing, and, 'chang[ing] himself from an Indian juggler to a British Minister of State' Hay Signor Tomaso Richmond Hill Theatre Barnum founded the American Dime Museum in Boston, which included oddities and freaks of nature, including working acts such as sword swallowers.
The "American Museum" burned down in , at which time Barnum retired from show business. According to an article in the Philadeplphia "Pennsylvanian" newspaper dated November 27, They will leap over elephants, and even five camels side by side; their bodies are so pliant that they will twine themselves like snakes up and down between the steps of a ladder; they walk over sharp swords; raise heavy burdens with their eyelids; and like Ramo Samee of old, are said to be able to float in the air without any visible support.
Even the children exercise themselves in swallowing small sticks of bamboo, in order that they may eventually do the like with swords and daggers. Born June 12, Married Performed mid s? Mitchell was born in her father's traveling van in Coventry on June 12, At the age of 16, around , she married showman Henry James Wallis who was a fairground proprietor and showman of the old school.
Wallis was born in Liverpool on May 11, At first Wallis worked as a photographer on the fairgrounds, but he later became a riding master of some note, and was also the founder of Seaforth Fair and one of the founders of the Van Dweller's Association , which later became the Showmen's Guild of Great Britain. Martha Mitchell 's brother was Charlie Mitchell , the famous bare knuckle boxer who fought J.
Sullivan and Gentleman Jim Corbett. Martha Mitchell died by the age of 30, circa Martha Mitchell Birth Certificate. Sword swallower Lawson Peck was known to have performed at the Peoria Museum in According to the announcement in the Peoria Transcript , dated Oct. Lawson Peck from New York, the greatest sword swallower living, to give two performances Friday and Saturday nights at the museum. The sword, 23 inches long, may be inspected by the audience. He will also bare his neck and swallow the sword up to the hilt, a feat never attempted by a living man before.
No additional charge to the museum. Jack Naylor collected a number of interesting photographs, including this rare photo of a sword swallower from the s. Could this have been sword swallower Lawson Peck? Unknown Sword Swallower from s. According to an article in the Pittsburgh Daily Post dated January 10, It seems that a traveling company of players gave a show there some time ago, and shortly after all the goods and chattels were seized on a writ against one Poguee for failure to pay his board All this was interesting of course, but the agony was reached when " Signor Forrestelle " the great sword-swallower was put upon the stand.
Signor carried his sword with him and the lawyers wanted to see him swallow it, and so asked if he had any objections to showing his performance.
He had none, and down went twenty-seven inches of steel, to the gratification of the lawyers. Signor handed his sword to the admiring legal gentlemen, asking them to examine and see that there was no fraud.
He had a very business-like air, and when asked what other branches his business took in, he remarked that it was his habit to eat marbles. Everybody wanted to see him eat marbles, and down went four good-sized "allies. Signor 's performance was "immense," and had a jury witnessed this novel exposition of a legal point, his fortune would have been made. And Signor Forestell , the sword swallower, who performed outside of a museum in the old St. Ignatius building on Market Street where the Emporium now stands.
This individual actually slid canes, bayonets and swords down his throat to the amazement of the gathered throng. But this class of fakir was only doing his bit as an entertainer, and harmed no one but himself, while the real simon pure medical fakir was the individual who did untold injury to all those who sought relief from him.
There is a sword-swallower, P rof. Forestell , whose feats are marvelous. He actually swallows solid steel swords and bayonets, also ordinary walking canes with equal facility. Signor Forestelle performed for over 31 years. Signor Forestelle Timeline Vannuchi's Museum New Orleans San Francisco Museum John Robinson's Circus at Lincoln Park According to the "London Labour and the London Poor" , Sallementro learned sword and snake swallowing at the age of 17 or 18 from his friend Clarke who was also a sword and snake swallower: It was a mate of mine that I was with that first put me up to sword and snake swallowing.
I copied off him, and it took me about three months to learn it. I began with a sword first - of course not a sharp sword, but a blunt-pointed - and I didn't exactly know how to do it, for there's a trick to it. At first it turned me, putting it down my throat past my swallow, right down, about 18 inches. It made my swallow sore, very sore, and I used lemon and sugar to cure it.
It was tight at first, and I kept pushing it down further and further. There's one thing - you mustn't cough, and until you're used to it, you want to very bad, and then you must pull it up again.
My sword was about three-quarters of an inch wide. At first I didn't know the trick of doing it, but I found it out this way. You see, the trick is you must oil the sword - the best sweet oil, worth 14 pence a pint - and you put it on with a sponge. Then, you understand, if the sword scratches the swallow, it don't make it sore, 'cos the oil heals it up again. When first I put the sword down, before I oiled it, it used to come up quite slimy, but after the oil it slips down quite easy, and is as clean when it comes up as before it went down.
The knives are easier to do than the sword because they are shorter. We puts them right down till the handle rests on the mouth. The sword is about 18 inches long, and the knives about 8 inches in the blade. People run away with the idea that you slip the blades down your breast, but I always hold mine right up with the neck bare, and they see it go into the mouth 'atween the teeth.
They also fancy it hurts you, but it don't, or what a fool I should be to do it. I don't mean to say it don't hurt you at first, 'cos it do, for my swallow was very bad, and I couldn't eat anything but liquids for two months whilst I was learning.
I cured my swallow whilst I was stretching it with lemon and sugar. I was the second one that ever swallowed a snake. I was about 17 or 18 years old when I learnt it. The first was Clarke as did it. He done very well with it, but he wasn't out no more than two years before me, so he wasn't known much.
In the country there is some places where, when you do it, they swear you are the devil, and won't have it nohow. The snakes I use are about 18 inches long, and you must first cut the stingers out, 'cos it might hurt you. I always keep two or three by me for my performances. I keep them warm, and I give them nothing to eat but worms and gentles. I generally keep them in flannel or hay in a box.
I've three at home now. When first I began swallowing snakes, they tasted queer like. They draw'd the roof of the mouth a bit. It's a roughish taste. The scales rough you a bit when you draw them up. You see, a snake will go into ever such a little hole, and they are smooth one way. The head of the snake goes about an inch and a half down the throat, and the rest of it continues in the mouth, curled 'round like. I hold him by the tail, and when I pinch it, he goes right in.
You must cut the stinger out or he'll injure you. The tail is slipppery, but you nip it with the nails like pinchers. If you was to let go, he'd go right down, but most snakes will stop at two inches down the swallow, and then they bind like a ball in the mouth.
I generally get my snakes by giving little boys ha'pence to go and catch 'em in the woods. I get them when I'm pitching in the country. I'll get as many as I can get, and bring 'em up to London for my engagements. When first caught, the snake is slimy, and I have to clean him by scraping him with a cloth, and then with another, until he's nice and clean. I have put 'em down slimy, on purpose to taste what it was like.
It had a nasty taste, very nasty. When I exhibit, I first holds the snake up in the air and pinches the tail, to make it curl about and twist 'round my arm, to show that he is alive.
Then I holds it above my mouth, and as soon as he sees the hole, in he goes. He goes wavy-like, as a ship goes, that's the comparison. I always hold my breath whilst his head is in my swallow. When he moves in the swallow, it tickles a little, but it don't make you want to retch.
In my opinion, he is more glad to come up than to go down, for it seems to be too hot for him. I keep him down about two minutes. If I breathe or cough, he draws out and curls back again.
I think there's artfulness in some of them big snakes, for they seem to know which is the master. I was at Wombwell's Menagerie of Wild Beasts for 3 months, and I had the care of a big snake, as thick 'round as my arm. I wouldn't attempt to put that one down my throat, for I think I might easier have done down his'n. It was a f'urren snake, all over spots, called a boa-constrictor. Performed Died Donnell was sword swallower with a side show in the Pittsburgh area in and was sought by his mother, Eliza Donnell.
Mother seeks James S Donnell. Stewart was a Scottish recipient of the Victoria Cross , the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces. Stewart was 26 years old, and a Captain in the 93rd Sutherland Highlanders when he was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions at Lucknow.
On October 19, , while at Hythe, Hampshire, Stewart was giving a demonstration of sword swallowing. His demonstration went fatally wrong and he died from internal injuries a week later, on October 26, at the age of Stewart is buried in a vault at St. Mary's Church , Grandtully, Scotland. Born Performed Died July 26, He became so skilled as a rider that he toured Europe with the circus.
Benedetti began learning sword swallowing at the age of 14 in , and eventually became proficient at it by the age of 20 in According to an article dated May 30, in the Daily Phoenix: Maury introduced to the faculty and students Signor Carlo Benedetti , a professional sword swallower, on whom he proposed to make a surgical examination.
Benedetti first swallowed a sword blade twenty-three inches in length, and bending over, completely bent the steel. Next he placed a sabre, measuring twenty-nine inches in length down his throat to the hilt. The medical examiners discovered that the blade of the weapon stretches the oesophagus and distends the lower wall of the stomach.
Benedetti then swallowed six thin, light swords at once, then extricated them with such ease as to excite the wonder of all the beholders. He next took an ordinary musket, weighing eleven pounds, with a common bayonet afixed. This bayonet he thrust into his throat by raising the musket butt into the air. When it was in he bowed all around to the company. He then drew the weapon out gracefully and easily, and explained that the point of leverage fell upon his lower jaw and teeth, which are very strong.
The Captain General was present, and the novelty of the evening was the feat of the sword swallower, Benedetti , who attempted to cram an umbrella down his throat. He swallowed His Excellency the Captain General's sword, a cane, and other articles, but could not stomach the umbrella.
Benedetti 's marvellous performance at the Royal Aquarium ". In , Benedetti was described swallowing a cane in the September 30, Atlanta Constitution. In , the editor of a London magazine described Signor Benedetti who had just performed at the Westminster Royal Aquarium and Canterbury Hall at the age of According to the description, Benedetti stood 5 ft 8 inches tall, and swallowed a blade that was About one year ago Benedetti began to give evidence that his mind was affected.
He imagined he was a millionaire and threw his money away. Fifteen years ago he was famous all over the world as a sword swallower. Signor Carlos Benedetti Timeline Joined circus as rider Began learning sword swallowing at 14 Began performing as sword swallower at 20 Tacon Theatre Havana Cuba Royal Aquarium Westminster London Jan 9, 18, July 3, Aug 5: Crystal Palace London New York NY Began losing mental facilities Committed to mental asylum, Morris Plains NJ Senor Franco the "sword swallower and stone eater" performed at Manly Beach, Australia on April 4, Four years later he was performing in San Francisco California on March 12, He swallowed a 23 inch long sword.
Born May 15, Performed Died January 3, He entered the circus business as a sword swallower for a few years around at about the age of He then became an operator and manager of his own sideshow. During the Civil War, he was twice sentenced to be shot for dissertion; the first time, as a mere boy, he was pardoned by President Lincoln ; the second time, succeeded in escaping.
In later years, he was considered one of the best shots in Indiana. Erwin was married once, but the union was not a happy one. He died of pneumonia in Indianapolis, IN on January 3, at the age of Keller was fascinated by the feat and persuaded the sword swallower to visit his clinic and have his throat examined with a laryngeal mirror. Adolf Kussmaul carefully observed the sword swallower, being especially interested in the way he positioned his head for the passage of the long straight sword, and decided to examine him himself.
For this purpose, Dr. Kussmaul had a local musical instrument maker named Fischer fashion tubes 47 cm long and 13 mm in diameter, one being round and the other elliptical in design, the tubes fitted with conical wooden mandarins to facilitate insertion. Using the straight tube, mirrors and a gasoline lamp, Kussmaul inspected the esophagus and the fundus of the stomach, thereby performing the first successful esophagoscopy esophagogastrostomy on a sword swallower in The sword swallower tolerated the long tubes well, but the examination was disappointing because the light was too weak to illuminate the field so far from its source.
Also, despite washing out the stomach, fluid constantly collected around the tube and hindered the view.
However Kussmaul was so pleased with his success that he took the sword swallower with him to perform demonstrations in various clinics, and later enlisted other sword swallowers due to their ability to voluntarily relax the cricopharyngeal muscle and form a straight line from the pharynx to the stomach, allowing passage of the rigid endoscope. Today Kussmaul is recognized as the developer of the first rigid endoscope. Kussmaul died in Heidelberg, and his grave is located in a cemetary in Heidelberg, Germany.
Adolph Kussmaul Dr. Adolf Kussmaul later Dr. Adolf Kussmaul Heidelburg Dr. Adolf Kussmaul grave Heidelberg. According to an article in "The Youth's Companion" dated October 29, A famous French physician lately experimented upon a Chinese conjuror, who swallowed a sword nearly three feet long, and permitted an examination of his body while the blade was in its living sheath.
Fourle such was the anatomists's name was thoroughly satisfied with the honesty of the operation. They traced the point along its downward course, and felt it thirty inches from the swallower's mouth. So we may set down sword and poker swallowing as genuine feats of gymnastics. Article Oct 29, The first known photograph of an Indian Sword Swallower was displayed in England at the South Kensington Exhibition of in an album of photographs entitled "Trades and Occupations of India" in response to English curiousity about the British Empire in India.
Performed Died April 11, According to an article in the New York Herald dated July 15, , and another article in the New York Times dated July 16, , a novel performance was offered at the Olympic Theatre on July 15, by Ling Look , "who disposes mysteriously but satisfactorily of a blade ninety centimetres in length.
A quote from describes Ling Look's performace: How much sword he took we are not prepared to state; but he did not perish. In a showman named Heinrich Kellar , who went by the name Harry Kellar , put together a show troupe that included Link Look. During this time, Kellar learned some secrets of the business, and began his solo work until the opportunity came to join the spectacle of the Davenports Brothers in From to , Kellar and Fay toured South America.
In the spring of , Kellar , 24, along with William Marion Fay , both junior pseudo-spiritualists, left the Davenports show in the spring of and became independent performers, forming a partnership and putting together their own tour throughout America and Europe under the name Fay and Keller.
They were specialists of exceptional merit. Ling Look was known as the "Fire-King" , while Yamadeva was a contortionist of such rare powers that he was known as the "Man-Serpent" , and his movements were as graceful as a cat.
Kellar formed a troupe with the brothers under the name of "The Royal Illusionists". The party went to New York by the steamer Andes , narrowly escaping shipwreck off Hatteras in the March Equinoctial of After a short stay in New York, the trio crossed overland to California, and began an engagement at Baldwin's Academy of Music in San Francisco on the evening of May 15, Ling Look and Yamadeva posed as Chinese and Japanese performers, but in fact, according to various sources, were Hungarian from Budapest or Austrian from Vienna.
Ling Look performed as a fire-eater and sword swallower, and went by the title "King of Fire". With his head half-shaved, and the remaining hair in a long braid, he almost looked Chinese. Some of his feats included swallowing hot coals and red hot swords, then blowing fire from his mouth. Meanwhile, Yamadeva was an accomplished contortionist who performed incredible escapes.
He was also known as the Snake Man , due to his serpentine or feline movements. The infernal dinner fire eating 2. The poor of India escape 3. Yamadeva the snake contortion 4. Their show consisted of a spiritualist cabin with Kellar and Cunard performing cage disappearance and escapes from ropes and handcuffs, and contortion by Yamadeva , and for the finale, the fire and sword acts by Ling Look.
In Sydney, they played a successful engagement at the Victoria Theater. During their ten weeks' engagement in Australia they performed to capacity houses everywhere.
Sir Hercules Robinson , Lady Robinson and suite were frequent attendants at the entertainments of the Illusionists. From Australia they went to Java, and from there on to Shanghai, China In early October Yamadeva suffered heart pains while playing a pin bowling game in Shanghai China. They were watching a husky sea captain who was using a huge ball and making a double spare at every roll, when Yamadeva suddenly remarked, "I can handle one as heavy as that big loafer can.
But he misjudged his own strength, for he had no sooner delivered the ball than he grasped his side moaning in pain. He barely had enough strength to get back to the ship, where he immediately went to bed. Four days later, he died while onboard the ship heading to Hong Kong. An examination showed that he had ruptured an artery. Shortly after their arrival in Hong Kong, Ling Look underwent an operation for a liver trouble, and died under the knife.
Six months later, his brother Ling Look died on April 11 or 14? In , a fakir with the same name, the same routine, Chinese look, hair and costume style appeared in England and claimed to be the original Ling Look.
He wore his make-up both on and off stage, and performed Ling Look's show perfectly. This performer claimed that the news of his death in was not true, and that he was still alive. In , a commentary in the newspaper La Capital de Rosario , dated August 9, , gave news of an artist with an exotic name who was performing in town. It was Ling Look , who it was claimed, had worked as director of a great illusionist and acrobatic troupe, in their inimitable work with the infernal dinner, and swallowing swords.
The same name and the same routines, the one who so successfully passed through Rosario with his brother Yamadeva in ? But this was not possible, unless the advertised Look Ling had risen, or was a phony.
The litmus test was when this Ling Look clashed with Kellar , who had buried the original Ling Look in The imitator had the nerve to stick to his story even when confronted by Kellar. When Keller assured him that he had personally attended the burial of Ling Look in Hong Kong, the imposter broke down and confessed that he was a younger brother of the original Ling Look.
Kellar later said that the resemblance was so strong that had he not seen the original Ling Look consigned to the grave, he himself would have been duped into believing that this was the man who had been with him in Hong Kong. Kellar later confessed to Harry Houdini , that the resemblance between the two was such that if he had not been present when Ling Look died in Hong Kong in , he would almost be unable to refute or verify that this was another person in Seeking photos and more information on Ling Look.
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