Eusapia Palladino: Rascal Medium

Although not as famous as D.D. Home, Eusapia Palladino was certainly more controversial as a medium. Born in 1854, Eusapia came from a common family. Unlike D.D. Home, she was not formally educated and had a very mischievous air about her. Also unlike Home, Eusapia was not above trickery and was caught in fraud in several instances. As a result, her mediumistic feats were often ignored or spurned by experts and investigators.

However, Braude makes the case that a thorough investigation of Palladino shows several instances of genuine anomalous phenomena under very stringent conditions. Later controlled investigations of Palladino appeared to produce paranormal phenomena with no investigated instances of trickery.



Paladino despite thorough searching, hands and feet being held, and immediate investigation of her phenomena; a. levitated furniture and tables, b. produced human feeling hands through a curtain, c. herself floated, and d. could untie knots without touching the fabric or rope. Was this trickery or genuine phenomena? Braude suggests that Paladino was genuine in many cases, but would engage in trickery if she could get away with it, or was treated rudely by others.

My question to you, thoughtful readers, is this. Is one sign of trickery enough to dismiss all other paranormal claims? Comments welcome.


Submitted by: Brian Laythe


Braude S. (1997). The limits of influence. Psychokinesis and the philosophy of science. Lanham, Maryland: University Press of America.

One thought on “Eusapia Palladino: Rascal Medium”

  1. No it should not be that way….unfortunatly…society has lead us to react that way in most situations so the fact that people wrote off the talents of this person were normal and probably very beneficial to the continuation of trickery…which seems justifiable…in any case….

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