|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Hero of Our Time by M.Y. Lermontov:
table he would become oblivious of everything.
He usually lost, but his constant ill success only
aroused his obstinacy. It was related that, on one
occasion, during a nocturnal expedition, he was
keeping the bank on a pillow, and had a terrific run
of luck. Suddenly shots rang out. The alarm was
sounded; all but Vulich jumped up and rushed
"Stake, va banque!" he cried to one of the
most ardent gamblers.
"Seven," the latter answered as he hurried
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne:
obtain from them what they wanted. And then he thought of his
preservers--those who had made him again a man, and an honest mm, those to
whom he owed all--murdered without pity, their works destroyed, their island
turned into a pirates' den! He said to himself that he, Ayrton, was the
principal cause of so many disasters, since his old companion, Bob Harvey,
had but realized his own plans, and a feeling of horror took possession of
him. Then he was seized with an irresistible desire to blow up the brig and
with her, all whom she had on board. He would perish in the explosion, but
he would have done his duty.
Ayrton did not hesitate. To reach the powder-room, which is always
situated in the after-part of a vessel, was easy. There would be no want of
The Mysterious Island
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from An Inland Voyage by Robert Louis Stevenson:
your guard wherever you hear great professions about a very little
piece of virtue. If the English could only hear how they are
spoken of abroad, they might confine themselves for a while to
remedying the fact; and perhaps even when that was done, give us
fewer of their airs.
The young ladies, the graces of Origny, were not present at our
start, but when we got round to the second bridge, behold, it was
black with sight-seers! We were loudly cheered, and for a good way
below, young lads and lasses ran along the bank still cheering.
What with current and paddling, we were flashing along like
swallows. It was no joke to keep up with us upon the woody shore.
|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 Book of Remarkable Criminals by H. B. Irving:
had got into the body, and, notwithstanding the weight of the
lead piping, it had risen to the surface.
As soon as the police had been informed of the disappearance of
Aubert, their suspicions had fallen on the Fenayrous in
consequence of the request which Marin Fenayrou had made to the
commissary of police to aid him in the recovery from Aubert of
his wife's letters. But there had been nothing further in their
conduct to provoke suspicion. When, however, the body was dis-
covered and at the same time an anonymous letter received
denouncing the Fenayrous as the murderers of Aubert, the police
decided on their arrest. On the morning of June 8 M. Mace,
A Book of Remarkable Criminals