|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Wrong Box by Stevenson & Osbourne:
'I see nothing to laugh at,' observed Mr Finsbury tartly.
'And talking of that, has Morris any power to sign for the firm?'
'No one but myself,' replied Joseph.
'Poor devil of a Morris! O, poor devil of a Morris!' cried the
lawyer in delight. 'And his keeping up the farce that you're at
home! O, Morris, the Lord has delivered you into my hands! Let me
see, Uncle Joseph, what do you suppose the leather business
'It was worth a hundred thousand,' said Joseph bitterly, 'when it
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Underground City by Jules Verne:
turned also, and gazed at a spot situated about half a mile inland.
It was Dundonald Castle. A long flame twisted and bent under the gale,
on the summit of the old tower.
"The Fire-Maiden!" cried the superstitious men in terror.
Clearly, it needed a good strong imagination to find any human
likeness in that flame. Waving in the wind like a luminous flag,
it seemed sometimes to fly round the tower, as if it was just going out,
and a moment after it was seen again dancing on its blue point.
"The Fire-Maiden! the Fire-Maiden!" cried the terrified
fishermen and peasants.
All was then explained. The ship, having lost her reckoning in the fog,
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Before Adam by Jack London:
their chests in helpless rage. Big Face was especially
angry, and though he hushed his racket when Red-Eye
drew near, he did not hush it to the extent the others
As for me, I played no brave part. I know I was
anything but a hero. Besides, of what use would it
have been for me to encounter Red-Eye? He was the
mighty monster, the abysmal brute, and there was no
hope for me in a conflict of strength. He would have
killed me, and the situation would have remained
unchanged. He would have caught the Swift One before
|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 Cousin Pons by Honore de Balzac:
"You look sad ven you look at your friend," remarked Schmucke, who had
listened with great interest. "Kann you pe chealous of him?"
"I am jealous for Fritz's happiness," said Wilhelm. "Does that face
look as if it belonged to a happy man? I am afraid of Paris; I should
like to see him do as I am doing. The old tempter may awake again. Of
our two heads, his carries the less ballast. His dress, and the opera-
glass and the rest of it make me anxious. He keeps looking at the
lorettes in the house. Oh! if you only knew how hard it is to marry
Fritz. He has a horror of 'going a-courting,' as you say; you would
have to give him a drop into a family, just as in England they give a