|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe:
the entire family lay in the direct line of descent, and had
always, with very trifling and very temporary variation, so lain.
It was this deficiency, I considered, while running over in
thought the perfect keeping of the character of the premises with
the accredited character of the people, and while speculating
upon the possible influence which the one, in the long
lapse of centuries, might have exercised upon the other--it was
this deficiency, perhaps, of collateral issue, and the consequent
undeviating transmission, from sire to son, of the patrimony with
the name, which had, at length, so identified the two as to merge
the original title of the estate in the quaint and equivocal
The Fall of the House of Usher
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Garden Party by Katherine Mansfield:
At that "she" looked up; she simply withered her mother. "Why can't you
leave me?" she said furiously. "What utter rot! How dare you make a scene
like this? This is the last time I'll come out with you. You really are
too awful for words." She looked her mother up and down. "Calm yourself,"
she said superbly.
Mrs. Raddick was desperate, just desperate. She was "wild" to go back with
Mrs. MacEwen, but at the same time ...
I seized my courage. "Would you--do you care to come to tea with--us?"
"Yes, yes, she'll be delighted. That's just what I wanted, isn't it,
darling? Mrs. MacEwen...I'll be back here in an hour...or less...I'll--"
Mrs. R. dashed up the steps. I saw her bag was open again.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from What is Man? by Mark Twain:
Record sitting every fortnight, with six attorneys, besides the
town clerk, belonging to it, and it is certainly not straining
probability to suppose that the young Shakespeare may have had
employment in one of them. There is, it is true, no tradition to
this effect, but such traditions as we have about Shakespeare's
occupation between the time of leaving school and going to London
are so loose and baseless that no confidence can be placed in
them. It is, to say the least, more probable that he was in an
attorney's office than that he was a butcher killing calves 'in a
high style,' and making speeches over them."
This is a charming specimen of Stratfordian argument. There
What is Man?
|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 Four Arthurian Romances by Chretien DeTroyes:
"Table des noms propres de toute nature compris dans les
chansons de geste", Paris, 1904; Albert Counson, "Noms
epiques entres dans le vocabulaire commun" in "Romanische
Forschungen", xxiii. 401-413). These names are mentioned
here in connection with the brave exploits which Christian
knights, while in their cups, may boast that they will
accomplish (F.). This practice of boasting was called
indulging in "gabs" (=Eng. "gab"), a good instance of which
will be found in "Le Voyage de Charlemagne a Jeruslaem" (ed.
Koschwitz), v. 447 ff.
(10) It is evident in this passage that Chretien's version is not