JUGGLER (Lat. joculator, jester), in the modern sense a performer of sleight-of-hand tricks and dexterous feats of skill in tossing balls, plates, knives, etc. The term is practically synonymous with conjurer (see CONJURING). The joculatores were the mimes of the middle ages (see DRAMA) ; the French use of the word jongleurs (an erroneous form of jougleur) included the singers known as trouveres; and the humbler English minstrels of the same type gradually passed into the strolling jugglers, from whose exhibitions the term came to cover loosely any acrobatic, pantomimic and sleight-of-hand performances. In ancient Rome various names were given to what we call jugglers, e.g. ventilatores (knife-throwers), and pilarii (ball-players).
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)