Strange as it may seem, von Kempelen’s speaking machine from 1791 is the best result obtained in various attempts to build a mechanism similar to the speech apparatus, capable of producing a vocal signal. In this book discussion, we will illustrate von Kempelen’s work, along with the attempts, across history, to build talking devices. We will highlight the 2 paths that have been followed over the centuries: “vocal transport” and “artificial voice.” The first case was a trick, because the voice was produced by a hidden subject and transported through an artifice to a head or a statue. The other path, that of research, has tried to imitate the phonatory apparatus to produce sequences of sounds somewhat similar to those that make up the speech chain. Which of the 2 paths led to the production of today’s synthesized speech? The trick or the research? We will try to answer this question.