|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Recruit by Honore de Balzac:
she spoke, her pale face lighted and seemed to acquire fresh life. Her
large dark eyes were full of affability and kindness, and yet their
calm, religious expression seemed to say that the springs of her
existence were no longer in her.
Married in the flower of her age to an old and jealous soldier, the
falseness of her position in the midst of a court noted for its
gallantry contributed much, no doubt, to draw a veil of melancholy
over a face where the charms and the vivacity of love must have shone
in earlier days. Obliged to repress the naive impulses and emotions of
a woman when she simply feels them instead of reflecting about them,
passion was still virgin in the depths of her heart. Her principal
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Emerald City of Oz by L. Frank Baum:
that I am not properly prepared to receive them. But I'm sure you
will pardon my untidy room, for this is my workshop."
"Do you make all the paper dolls?" inquired Dorothy.
"Yes; I cut them out with my scissors, and paint the faces and some of
the costumes. It is very pleasant work, and I am happy making my
paper village grow."
"But how do the paper dolls happen to be alive?" asked Aunt Em.
"The first dolls I made were not alive," said Miss Cuttenclip. "I
used to live near the castle of a great Sorceress named Glinda the
Good, and she saw my dolls and said they were very pretty. I told her
I thought I would like them better if they were alive, and the next
The Emerald City of Oz
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin by Benjamin Franklin:
It filled expeditiously, and the battery was soon erected, the merlons
being fram'd of logs and fill'd with earth. We bought some old
cannon from Boston, but, these not being sufficient, we wrote to
England for more, soliciting, at the same time, our proprietaries
for some assistance, tho' without much expectation of obtaining it.
Meanwhile, Colonel Lawrence, William Allen, Abram Taylor,
Esqr., and myself were sent to New York by the associators,
commission'd to borrow some cannon of Governor Clinton. He at first
refus'd us peremptorily; but at dinner with his council, where there
was great drinking of Madeira wine, as the custom of that place
then was, he softened by degrees, and said he would lend us six.
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
|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 Travels with a Donkey in the Cevenne by Robert Louis Stevenson:
'I don't know,' he said; 'I will not cross the door.'
Here was the Beast of Gevaudan, and no mistake.
'Sir,' said I, with my most commanding manners, 'you are a coward.'
And with that I turned my back upon the family party, who hastened
to retire within their fortifications; and the famous door was
closed again, but not till I had overheard the sound of laughter.
FILIA BARBARA PATER BARBARIOR. Let me say it in the plural: the
Beasts of Gevaudan.
The lanterns had somewhat dazzled me, and I ploughed distressfully
among stones and rubbish-heaps. All the other houses in the
village were both dark and silent; and though I knocked at here and