(Notice: the red pillar has been re-glued, not the best job but it is a very strong mend, just not as clean as it could have been. There is a close-up photo at the end. In performance it would make no difference of course.)
Here is a rare beauty from the German master magic duo of Tony Lackner and Eckhard Boettcher c. 2000.
The props are well made and look interesting and colorful and the method is easy to do. It comes with a great patter story filled with drama and intrigue which I have done my best to edit and enhance below (beginning with a basic google translation). Basically the princess is hidden under one of the three pillars and if her brother, the prince, cannot find her on the first attempt, the lovely and beautiful princess will be forced to marry a hundred year old Persian scholar who is possibly the ugliest person in the world.
The pressure is on to save the princess … which of course you do by successfully producing an envelope with the name of the pillar that the princess is under 🙂
This effect has recently been remade and significantly upgraded using an electronic gimmick as The Mystery of Horus by N8 Quality Magic. This is the original that uses an old school method that needs no batteries, and requires no reset or maintenance. Not a sexy method but reliable and just as amazing to the spectator 🙂
Effect: A very long time ago, Emperor Qianlong ruled over a secure and very prosperous Qing dynasty and was able to devote himself to his passions of reading, poetry and, above all, his incredibly valuable art collection. As one of the greatest art collectors of all time, he frequently sent his ministers out to comb the provinces for exquisite and precious treasures.
It was such a minister who one day returned from his explorations, with a Persian scholar in tow. He bowed deeply to the emperor and presented him with an ebony horse. The bridle, stirrups, and the saddle were richly decorated with gold and precious stones. But the emperor was even more astonished when the Persian scholar told him about the wonderful secret of the wooden horse. It could cover a distance of a year with its rider in one day, fly through the air and take him anywhere on earth. The Persian immediately demonstrated that he had spoken the truth. He jumped onto the horse, flew around the palace and returned gracefully to an astonished group in the courtyard. Emperor Qianlong was so excited that he promised the scholar that he would grant his every wish. But the scholar had said he only one wish and asked the emperor for his daughter’s hand, because her incomparable beauty had even been reported in Persia. The emperor immediately consented and called to have the marriage contract drawn up.
The princess had been listening behind a curtain and when she saw the Persian she was about to marry, she was very frightened. He was a hundred years old and had many wrinkles and folds. His eyes were red and oozing, his cheeks sunken and as yellow as leather. His clumsy nose resembled a cucumber, most of his teeth had fallen out and his hands were shaking constantly. Truly, it was the ugliest person you could ever imagine, and can hardly be described with words. So when the lovely and beautiful princess spied her chosen bridegroom, she was very unhappy. She hurried to her room, and cried bitterly.
When her brother, who loved his sister more than anything, heard her crying, he hurried over to her and asked the reason for her tears. She told him about her misfortune, whereupon he immediately rushed to the Emperor and asked him how he could have acted so cruelly to his own daughter?
Emperor Qianlong had already regretted his hasty and reckless promise and asked the Persian to return. The Emperor offered the Persian gold, silver and precious jewels if he would renounce the marriage to his daughter.
The ugly Persian thought for a moment and then slyly explained his terms. The princess was supposed to hide secretly in one of the different pillars in the lobby. If the first pillar chosen by the prince was the correct one, he would generously forego not only the marriage, but also all the other treasures he was offered.
No sooner said than done: the princess hid herself in one of the three pillars and her brother now had the difficult task, if he wanted to avert her horrible fate, of finding the right pillar on hist first choice.
With your back turned the spectator hides the princess under one of the three pillars. When you turn around you hand an envelope to the spectator who removes the slip of paper and reads it aloud. Luckily it matches the pillar where the princess is hiding and she is saved from marrying the Persian.
(Notice: Includes: Printed Instructions.)( Post Source: martinsmagic.com - click for details )