The floating of objects using invisible threads is obviously as old as the art of string and rod puppetry, and jointed dolls that may have been used as puppets could go back at least as far as 3000 BCE* (the use of early puppets by magicians is moot, but puppets and Indian magicians were (slightly ambiguously) linked by Tsunetomo Yamamoto in the early 1700s*). Joseph* details the first confirmed use of an invisible thread (a hair) by a magician in the late 1400s from the notebook of Thomas Betson, a Middlesex monk. A discussion of examples from the 1500s onwards can be found here. Black hairs or threads were the most popular. On larger levitations from the Golden Age of Magic (1880s-1930s) wire was used, presumably blackened against a black background or disguised with smoke. The invention of Nylon by DuPont in the early 1930s allowed closer invisible thread work, while the invention of Kevlar thread in the 1960s, again by DuPont, has allowed for thinner threads to be used in large-scale levitations. For modern small-scale levitations, the invention of the invisible loop by Finn Jon allowed the movement of an object independent of the thread, which could additionally be suspended out of the vertical line with the object (for example by attachment to the head and one hand) allowing objects (for example another hand) to be passed above the levitating object. The invention of the elastic Invisible Thread Reel by James George (1989; Details) allowed greater thread tension control.