Werner Miller's Sub Rosa 1 and 2

Published on Sunday, October 07, 2012 in , , , , , ,

Cover of Werner Miller's Sub Rosa 1 and 2In the past, Werner Miller has generously shared his creative brand of mathematical magic with Grey Matters readers numerous times.

He's just released two new books, Sub Rosa 1 and Sub Rosa 2, and has allowed Grey Matters readers to take a free peek at an effect from the book.

Sub Rosa is Latin for “in the strictest confidence.” In Werner Miller's case, it also means a multi-volume series of books containing a treasure trove of deceptive and original mathematical-based magic, none of which requires any difficult sleight-of-hand.

In Sub Rosa 2, there's an effect called Latin ESP square. You shuffle a set of standard ESP testing cards, and then have the spectator cut the cards. You then deal them out without looking at the faces, so that no row, column, or diagonal contains duplicates of any symbol!

The method is described below, and you can download this PDF at this link.

In the description above, you start by giving the deck a special type of shuffle. You can learn that shuffle in just a few minutes via this YouTube tutorial. When using it with just 25 cards, it's very deceptive. Although it looks like a very thorough mixing procedure, the only effect it has is the same as a cut.

Beyond just setting up an amazing pattern, this is also a great way to secretly set up a Latin square for a subsequent trick. Colm Mulcahy, whom I wrote about just last month, has some excellent trick involving Latin square set-ups, including Splitting the Pot and Amazon Arrays (Large Action). You can find much more about Latin squares on the Mathematical Association of America's website.

Thanks again to Werner Miller to allow Grey Matters to share this great routine. For more of this ingenious thinking, check out Sub Rosa 1 and Sub Rosa 2, as well as his other works!

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