The correct time is read at the top of the clock as the black gear wheel rotates. One side of the gear is in Roman numerals, the other in Arabic numerals. There is no manufacturer’s name on this battery operated clock. Lettering on the back of the clock reads: ‘This Product is World Wide Protected Patent # 08/675,866’.

The magician asks a person to set the hand on the clock to an hour and then place the nickel plated cover on top so as to hide the face. The magician takes the watch back and mysteriously reveals the hour to which the watch was set. We have two versions: in one the surround of the watch face is red, in the other it is black.

This is a novelty clock that looks as though it is melting off a shelf. Manufactured by Can You Imagine, Chatsworth, CA 91311, USA. Complete with box and instructions, copyright 2010 Can You Imagine. U.S. Patent Number D621,725.

This is a magnetic orbiting planet novelty clock. Instead of having hands like a normal clock face, the face has three concentric circular depressions on it. Travelling round in each depression is a small coloured ball (‘planet’). The balls roll round the circle apparently of their own accord, but actually because they are following the movement of magnets within the clock. The three balls display hours, minutes and seconds. Imported to the UK by The Source, Hull, England. Made in China.

The novelty here is not the cards, but in the picture on the backs. The picture shows The Corpus Clock or, as its inventor John Taylor has christened it, the Chronophage (literally “time eater” from the Greek word for time, chronos and to eat, phage). If you have any interest at all in clocks, it is worth looking up the Corpus Clock on Wikipedia. The clock was unveiled in 2008. The cards are normal and still in their wrapper. Published by Galileo with The Cambridge Portfolio. Made in Austria by Piatnik.

The magician shows a polished wooden box and opens the front and back, allowing a clear view right through the box. A pocket watch is put into the box, which is closed. Suddenly a loud ringing is heard in the box and simultaneously the front drops down, revealing a full-sized and genuine alarm clock, which entirely fills the box. The clock is taken out, still ringing, and placed on the table.

As the clock ticks, the bird moves. The sphere has the numbers 1 to 12 around its ‘equator’. The clock has one hand which revolves around the sphere, pointing out the hour from 1 to 12. Made in Austria is stamped on the base.

This clock was on the wall of Gus and Kate Davenport’s family home in Tonbridge, Kent in the 1950s. It has since been restored. The two birds at the bottom of the clock rotate backwards and forwards each time the cuckoo comes out on the hour and half hour.

A spectator secretly sets the hand of the clock to an hour of her choosing and then slides the cover over the clock to hide the clock face. On taking the clock back, the magician is able to divine the correct hour to which the clock was set.