Chink-a-Chink is a magic trick in which four small objects, usually arranged in a square, rectangular or diamond formation, are covered by the magician's bare hands, two at a time. The objects appear to jump invisibly from corner to corner, usually ending up all together. Objects most commonly used for the trick are corks, dice, bottle caps, brass weights, and coins. However, the coin version of the trick has now evolved into a more or less separate and distinct magical genre known as "Matrix" whose inventor and chief exponent is Al Schneider.
The trick was famously covered in Edwin Sach's seminal book Sleight of Hand in 1877, utilizing four sugar cubes. Max Malini popularized the trick in the early 20th century using cut-down wine corks and is generally credited with naming the trick. Although the name was probably meant to be onomatopoetic, it can be misinterpreted as a racial slur and has been given alternative names. Leo Horowitz perpetuated Malini's version while adding refinements of his own (using covered sugar cubes of a type popular in supper clubs and night spots in the 30s, 40s and 50's). The late magician, Doug Henning, performed Chink-a-Chink on television in the early 1970s, using seashells.
Sean McWeeney, the author of the first e-book om the has demonstrated that the trick is a lot older than was previously thought, with a history stretching back to early/mid 19th century Germany. Prefabricated Chink-a-chink sets are, or were until recently, available on special order from various magic-makers, including François Danis of France and Jim Riser of the USA. Professional magicians, however, apparently prefer the traditional "found objects" to the artificial ones, reducing demand for the product.