Pope Francis Tablecloth Trick

A spoof talk show video showing Pope Francis performing a tablecloth trick was mistaken for the real thing after it was circulated out of context.

  • Published 8 October 2015
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Claim

Pope Francis was filmed performing a tablecloth trick during his visit to the United States in 2015.

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Origin

Depending upon your religion, you may find it plausible that Pope Francis can perform miracles; depending upon your level of gullibility, you may find it plausible that Pope Francis pulled off a popular trick and whisked a tablecloth from atop a table without disturbing the latter’s contents:

Francis, the magic dino-pope.

On 30 September 2015, daytime talk show host Ellen Degeneres unveiled a video purportedly showing the Pope achieving the latter feat:

The above-displayed video is obviously a joke. Ellen’s set up of the clip, as well as the fact that it originated on her program, made that clear. But a few days after this video aired on her talk show, a new version was posted online that lacked Ellen’s introduction. And without the comical context of the Ellen Degeneres Show, many viewers were left believing that the Pope actually performed the displayed tablecloth trick.

Of course, that was not the case. The original video from which it was created simply showed the Pope placing some flowers on the table and then walking away: