The ball is made out of glass and has a ground and polished flat base. Once the possession of Cambridge magician Claude Perry.
This demon has been very well made, but its purpose is not clear. It was possibly made as a one off to be used for a production by a magician.
Carlton was a successful comedy magician in the early part of the 20th century. This novelty is most unusual in that Carlton’s head has been printed in colour on the flat side of a coil of paper. The round coil is housed in a square cardboard container which has partial openings at the front and back. By moving the picture with thumb and forefinger the coil can be twisted, so distorting the face. This was clearly commissioned from the manufacturer by Davenports because the words on the container are ‘CARLTON. Zetes-Patent. Demon Series No. 45 L. D. London’. According to the illustrated advertisement from a contemporary Davenport catalogue over 30 different designs can be supplied. This might have been true, but now we are only aware of three. The other two do not show magicians. For further information on the other two, go to N1315 and N1316.
One possible use for elongated coins, such as these, is for a magic trick. A skilful magician could use one in the trick of stretching a coin.