|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Pool of Blood in the Pastor's Study by Grace Isabel Colbron and Augusta Groner:
up at him out of one of the coffins. The lid of the coffin stood
up against the wall and Muller saw that there were several other
empty ones further on, waiting for their silent occupants.
The body in the open coffin before which Muller stood was the body
of the man who had been missing since the day previous. He lay
there quite peacefully, his hands crossed over his breast, his eyes
closed, a line of pain about his lips. In the crossed fingers was
a little bunch of dark yellow roses. At the first glance one might
almost have thought that loving hands had laid the old pastor in his
coffin. But the red stain on the white cloth about his throat, and
the bloody disorder of his snow-white hair contrasted sadly with the
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Eve and David by Honore de Balzac:
engine, pointed, as will presently be seen, against the poor, patient
By seven o'clock next morning, Boniface Cointet was taking a walk by
the mill stream that turned the wheels in his big factory; the sound
of the water covered his talk, for he was talking with a companion, a
young man of nine-and-twenty, who had been appointed attorney to the
Court of First Instance in Angouleme some six weeks ago. The young
man's name was Pierre Petit-Claud.
"You are a schoolfellow of David Sechard's, are you not?" asked tall
Cointet by way of greeting to the young attorney. Petit-Claud had lost
no time in answering the wealthy manufacturer's summons.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Ancient Regime by Charles Kingsley:
degradation. What drew them up to Paris save vanity and profligacy?
What kept them from intermarrying with the middle class save pride?
What made them give up the office of governors save idleness? And
if vanity, profligacy, pride, and idleness be not injustices and
moral vices, what are?
The race of heroic knights and nobles who fought under the walls of
Jerusalem--who wrestled, and not in vain, for centuries with the
equally heroic English, in defence of their native soil--who had set
to all Europe the example of all knightly virtues, had rotted down
to this; their only virtue left, as Mr. Carlyle says, being--a
perfect readiness to fight duels.
|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 Grimm's Fairy Tales by Brothers Grimm:
I'll behave well. Goodbye, mother.' 'Goodbye, Hans.' Hans comes to
Gretel. 'Good day, Gretel.' 'Good day, Hans. What good thing do you
bring?' 'I bring nothing, I want something given me.' Gretel presents
Hans with a young goat. 'Goodbye, Gretel.' 'Goodbye, Hans.' Hans takes
the goat, ties its legs, and puts it in his pocket. When he gets home
it is suffocated. 'Good evening, mother.' 'Good evening, Hans. Where
have you been?' 'With Gretel.' 'What did you take her?' 'Took nothing,
she gave me something.' 'What did Gretel give you?' 'She gave me a
goat.' 'Where is the goat, Hans?' 'Put it in my pocket.' 'That was ill
done, Hans, you should have put a rope round the goat's neck.' 'Never
mind, will do better next time.'
Grimm's Fairy Tales