Oculus - Mark of the Bibliomancer – Lebanon Circle Prop & Illusion Design
Oculus - Mark of the Bibliomancer
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Oculus - Mark of the Bibliomancer


Inspired by the word force methods of U.F. Grant and Banachek, 'Oculus - Mark of the Bibliomancer' takes the concept to whole new level of devious design and versatility.

Whether you are a beginner or expert, the ability to force one, two, three or even four words seamlessly right under the spectator's nose is a common feat magicians often need to perform.

Oculus allows for a smooth and seamless force of any word from any book while the gimmick hides in plain sight, completely undetectable. Imagine performing impromptu book tests anywhere! Whether in the street or on stage your spectators will marvel as you demonstrate the powers of Bibliomancy. Nobody will suspect a thing, what's more natural than a bookmark in a book?

  •     Your choice of force word appears in the Oculus and is under your control at all times
  •     The forced word matches the book font and page colour flawlessly blending with the page

Each leather bookmark is hand-tooled, embossed and stained by Dan Baines in the Lebanon Circle Studio. The self contained mechanism can be customized by the user. Select your own choice of words from any book such as occult tomes, the bible, popular novels like Harry Potter for younger audiences or even Fifty Shades of Grey for a more adult performance. Oculus is a versatile magic tool that can be used in any genre of magic where you need to force either one or multiple words with ease.

Created as a standalone effect or as an accompaniment to Doppelgänger or any other book based routine, Oculus requires little or no magic skills to perform. Any book can be used, it is self working, can be examined and is fully customizable - what more could you want?

  •     Force up to 4 different words with one bookmark or 8 with two bookmarks for larger audiences
  •     Fully customizable - use your own choice of words
  •     Suitable for any written language, not just English!
  •     Can be examined and used as a normal bookmark
  •     Can be used as a real divination tool (see below)
  •     Crafted from leather for a lifetime of use

You will receive

  •     A handcrafted leather bookmark  with glass cabochon
  •     Gimmick
  •     Spare mechanism
  •     Instructional Booklet

What is Bibliomancy?

Bibliomancy is a form of divination in which you seek spiritual insight by randomly selecting a word or passage from a book. It is very easy to do: ask a question, pick up a book and riffle though stopping at a randomly chosen page. Without looking at the page, place your finger anywhere on it. Read where your finger landed and there's your answer.

Bibliomancy has been in practice for over 3000 years. The Ancient Greeks often used Homer’s Iliad or Odyssey for guidance. In the middle ages Virgil’s Aeneid was a popular choice although the I Ching and the Bible have also been used in more recent times.

During the mid 1800’s bibliomancy became an increasingly popular form of divination. As standards in education increased books became a more accessible form of entertainment for rich and poor alike. Combined with an developing interest in the Occult and supernatural, long neglected practices such as bibliomancy experienced a revival. Various bibliomancy practitioners started to spring up all over London. Some would use sacred texts for divination ranging from the Bible to ancient occult tomes. Some would try to divine insight from whole sentences or paragraphs however, the most popular was the one-word reading. Like the tarot where readings could be interpreted from a multi-card spread or simply a single card, the one-word bibliomancy reading became as fashionable as the daily horoscope is today.

Bibliomancy paraphernalia started to appear in the form of pendants, rings and bookmarks. The bookmark was the most popular bibliomancy device as most people used a bookmark when reading and they were very popular Victorian gifts. They were available in all shapes and sizes and in different materials like gold, brass, bronze, copper, celluloid, pewter, mother of pearl, leather even ivory and were produced after the 1850s by specialized companies like Gorham, S. Kirk & Sons and Tiffany.

A bibliomancy bookmark would be like any other apart from a small hole known as the 'oculus' in the center. This was either a plain hole although more opulent bookmarks used glass or crystal through which to view the word. Taken from the Latin word for 'eye' the use of a hole or window for divination and Magick can be traced back as far as Neolithic times. The power of the oculus or eye is represented in many beliefs from the 'All Seeing Eye' portrayed on the dollar bill, the Egyptian Eye of Horus and the representation in ancient architecture such as in the Pantheon to signify a window to the heavens. 

To seek guidance the bookmark would be randomly placed inside a book and the user would place the book under their pillow. In the morning the book would be opened at the bookmarked page and the word visible inside the oculus would be used to provide guidance for the coming day.

The Lebanon Circle reproduction of these Victorian bookmarks can still be used in the traditional way to give one-word spiritual guidance as part of any reading. 

Example Routine


Four audience members are ask to step forward and each select a book from a small pile you have on the stage.

You then enlighten the audience on the topic of Bibliomancy and proceed to show them examples of Victorian Bibliomancy instruments such as rings, pendants and the bookmark.  You also explain that they have also been used for more occult magickal purposes.

You ask the four spectators to close their eyes and relax as you play them a section of eerie reversed speech which loops several times.  You ask them to concentrate on the voice and open their minds.

The recording stops and you ask them to open their eyes.  You then tell them to take their chosen book and flick through it and select a page at random.  They may change their mind and pick another but the page must be full of text with no images or blank spaces.

Once they have selected a page the bookmark is placed in the book and you move it around the page until they tell you to stop.  The word that is highlighted in the Oculus when they ask you stop is then remembered by the spectator.  

The same procedure is performed for the remaining three spectators.

You then ask each spectator in turn to say aloud their selected word.


You then reveal written on a chalk board on stage a section of poetry, it is an extract from Edgar Allan Poe's 'The Raven'.

'And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted—nevermore!
Each spectator selected a word from each line of the poem extract!

Not only this but the strange reversed recording is then played forward to reveal a reading of exactly the same Poe extract!

Free choice or subconscious influence?

Your audience will never know, nevermore.....

Pre-order Special Offer Update

The first 20 orders were snapped up in less than 10 minutes so the special offer has now ended.  If you'd still like to get your hands on an Edgar Allen Poe 'Nevermore' leather bookmark they are available here for £10.  It's not magical but it will look rather nice tucked between the pages of your favorite Gothic tome.




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