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Today's Stichomancy for Arthur E. Waite

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Exiles by Honore de Balzac:

this strand, then liable to frequent floods, was a constable of the watch of the City of Paris, who had been able to do some service to their Reverences the Chapter of the Cathedral; and in return the Bishop leased him twenty-five perches of land, with exemptions from all feudal dues or taxes on the buildings he might erect.

Seven years before the beginning of this narrative, Joseph Tirechair, one of the sternest of Paris constables, as his name (Tear Flesh) would indicate, had, thanks to his share of the fines collected by him for delinquencies committed within the precincts of the Cite, had been able to build a house on the bank of the Seine just at the end of the Rue du Port-Saint-Landry. To protect the merchandise landed on the

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Little Britain by Washington Irving:

St. Paul's churchyard. His family have been very urgent for him to make an expedition to Margate, but he has great doubts of those new gimcracks, the steamboats, and indeed thinks himself too advanced in life to undertake sea-voyages.

Little Britain has occasionally its factions and divisions, and party spirit ran very high at one time in consequence of two rival "Burial Societies" being set up in the place. One held its meeting at the Swan and Horse Shoe, and was patronized by the cheesemonger; the other at the Cock and Crown, under the auspices of the apothecary; it is needless to say that the latter was the most flourishing. I have passed an evening or two at

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy:

spread into the healthy air, and the wan blue of the heaven was here and there coated with thin webs of incorporeal cloud which were of no effect in obscuring day. All the lights in the scene were yellow as to colour, and all the shadows were attenuated as to form. The creeping plants about the old manor-house were bowed with rows of heavy water drops, which had upon objects behind them the effect of minute lenses of high magnifying power. Just before the clock struck five Gabriel Oak and Coggan passed the village cross, and went on together


Far From the Madding Crowd
The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from Sylvie and Bruno by Lewis Carroll:

"I'll just ask this guileless peasant, with his brace of buckets that contain (apparently) water, if he'll be so kind as to direct us. Guileless peasant!" he proceeded in a louder voice. "Would you tell us the way to Outland?"

The guileless peasant turned with a sheepish grin. "Hey?" was all he said.

"The way--to--Outland!" the Professor repeated.

The guileless peasant set down his buckets and considered. "Ah dunnot--"

"I ought to mention," the Professor hastily put in, "that whatever you say will be used in evidence against you."

The guileless peasant instantly resumed his buckets. "Then ah says nowt!" he answered briskly, and walked away at a great pace.


Sylvie and Bruno