|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Nana, Miller's Daughter, Captain Burle, Death of Olivier Becaille by Emile Zola:
young woman, without seeming to notice her presence, applied the
rice powder, taking extreme pains as she did so, to avoid putting
any on the upper part of her cheeks. But when the prince remarked
that if she were to come and sing in London all England would want
to applaud her, she laughed amiably and turned round for a moment
with her left cheek looking very white amid a perfect cloud of
powder. Then she became suddenly serious, for she had come to the
operation of rouging. And with her face once more close to the
mirror, she dipped her finger in a jar and began applying the rouge
below her eyes and gently spreading it back toward her temples. The
gentlemen maintained a respectful silence.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Voyage to Abyssinia by Father Lobo:
sent some messengers with his compliments, and five mules for the
chief of our company. Our road lay through a wood, where we found
the ground covered over with young locusts, a plague intolerably
afflictive in a country so barren of itself. We arrived at length
at the bank of a small river, near which the King usually keeps his
residence, and found his palace at the foot of a little mountain.
It consisted of about six tents and twenty cabins, erected amongst
some thorns and wild trees, which afforded a shelter from the heat
of the weather. He received us the first time in a cabin about a
musket shot distant from the rest, furnished out with a throne in
the middle built of clay and stones, and covered with tapestry and
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Odyssey by Homer:
the well-builded chamber and sat him on the bed and took
off his soft doublet, and put it in the wise old woman's
hands. So she folded the doublet and smoothed it, and hung
it on a pin by the jointed bedstead, and went forth on her
way from the room, and pulled to the door with the silver
handle, and drew home the bar with the thong. There, all
night through, wrapped in a fleece of wool, he meditated in
his heart upon the journey that Athene had showed him.
Telemachus complains in vain, and borrowing a ship, goes
secretly to Pylos by night. And how he was there received.
|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 Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson:
In the town, however, the Lancastrians were far from being in so
good a posture. It was as Dick had said. The night-guard had
already doffed their harness; the rest were still hanging -
unlatched, unbraced, all unprepared for battle - about their
quarters; and in the whole of Shoreby there were not, perhaps,
fifty men full armed, or fifty chargers ready to be mounted.
The beating of the bells, the terrifying summons of men who ran
about the streets crying and beating upon the doors, aroused in an
incredibly short space at least two score out of that half hundred.
These got speedily to horse, and, the alarm still flying wild and
contrary, galloped in different directions.