|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Lamentable Tragedy of Locrine and Mucedorus by William Shakespeare:
By taking Corineius from this life,
And in his room leaving us worlds of care.
But none may more bewail his mournful hearse,
Than I that am the issue of his loins.
Now foul befall that cursed Humber's throat,
That was the causer of his lingering wound.
Tears cannot raise him from the dead again.
But where's my Lady, mistress Gwendoline?
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Duchesse de Langeais by Honore de Balzac:
interest in her empty life. So she prepared with no little
dexterity to raise a certain number of redoubts for him to carry
by storm before he should gain an entrance into her heart.
Montriveau should overleap one difficulty after another; he
should be a plaything for her caprice, just as an insect teased
by children is made to jump from one finger to another, and in
spite of all its pains is kept in the same place by its
mischievous tormentor. And yet it gave the Duchess inexpressible
happiness to see that this strong man had told her the truth.
Armand had never loved, as he had said. He was about to go, in a
bad humour with himself, and still more out of humour with her;
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe:
our fate was now determined, and we were both on board,
actually bound to Virginia, in the despicable quality of
transported convicts destined to be sold for slaves, I for five
years, and he under bonds and security not to return to England
any more, as long as he lived, he was very much dejected and
cast down; the mortification of being brought on board, as he
was, like a prisoner, piqued him very much, since it was first
told him he should transport himself, and so that he might go
as a gentleman at liberty. It is true he was not ordered to be
sold when he came there, as we were, and for that reason he
was obliged to pay for his passage to the captain, which we
|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 The Sportsman by Xenophon:
contract emnities, and reap the fruit of evil deeds, diseases, losses,
death--to the undoing of themselves, their children, and their
friends. Having their senses dulled to things evil, while more
than commonly alive to pleasures, how shall these be turned to good
account for the salvation of the state? Yet from these evils every one
will easily hold aloof, if once enamoured of those joys whose brief I
hold, since a chivalrous education teaches obedience to laws, and
renders justice familiar to tongue and ear.
 See "Hellenica Essays," p. 371.
 "To depravity of speech and conduct" (whether as advocates or
performers). See Aristoph. "Clouds."