|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Pair of Blue Eyes by Thomas Hardy:
Knight's face a slightly amused look at her proceedings.
'You think me foolish, I suppose,' she said recklessly; 'but I
want to do my very best just once, and see whether I can overcome
'Certainly: nothing more natural. Though I am afraid it is not
the plan adopted by women of the world after a defeat.'
'Because they know that as good as overcoming is skill in effacing
recollection of being overcome, and turn their attention to that
'I am wrong again, of course.'
A Pair of Blue Eyes
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from An Episode Under the Terror by Honore de Balzac:
dogma which turns respect for the person of a King into a matter of
religion. In the priest's indecision he was eager to see a favorable
solution of the doubts which seemed to torment him. To prevent too
prolonged reflection on the part of the reverend Jansenist, he added:
"I should blush to offer remuneration of any kind for the funeral
service which you have just performed for the repose of the King's
soul and the relief of my conscience. The only possible return for
something of inestimable value is an offering likewise beyond price.
Will you deign, monsieur, to take my gift of a holy relic? A day will
perhaps come when you will understand its value."
As he spoke the stranger held out a box; it was very small and
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Sesame and Lilies by John Ruskin:
and is suffering, I cannot help feeling sorrowful when I see in
England signs of our besetting sins appearing also. Paint and
chignons, slang and vaudevilles, knowing "Anonymas" by name, and
reading doubtfully moral novels, are in themselves small offences,
although not many years ago they would have appeared very heinous
ones, yet they are quick and tempting conveyances on a very
I would that all Englishwomen knew how they are looked up to from
abroad--what a high opinion, what honour and reverence we foreigners
have for their principles, their truthfulness, the fresh and pure
innocence of their daughters, the healthy youthfulness of their
|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 A Simple Soul by Gustave Flaubert:
approached the negro on the subject.
Once even, she had said:
"How glad Madame would be to have him!"
The man had repeated this remark to his mistress who, not being able
to keep the bird, took this means of getting rid of it.
He was called Loulou. His body was green, his head blue, the tips of
his wings were pink and his breast was golden.
But he had the tiresome tricks of biting his perch, pulling his
feathers out, scattering refuse and spilling the water of his bath.
Madame Aubain grew tired of him and gave him to Felicite for good.
A Simple Soul