|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Sentimental Journey by Laurence Sterne:
TANT PIS, when there is nothing. It comes to the same thing, said
I. PARDONNEZ-MOI, said the landlord.
I cannot take a fitter opportunity to observe, once for all, that
TANT PIS and TANT MIEUX, being two of the great hinges in French
conversation, a stranger would do well to set himself right in the
use of them, before he gets to Paris.
A prompt French marquis at our ambassador's table demanded of Mr.
H-, if he was H- the poet? No, said Mr. H-, mildly. - TANT PIS,
replied the marquis.
It is H- the historian, said another, - TANT MIEUX, said the
marquis. And Mr. H-, who is a man of an excellent heart, return'd
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Les Miserables by Victor Hugo:
twilight horror, the deck of a disabled ship. The combatants,
as they went and came, moved about there like black forms.
Above that terrible nesting-place of gloom the stories of the mute
houses were lividly outlined; at the very top, the chimneys
stood palely out. The sky was of that charming, undecided hue,
which may be white and may be blue. Birds flew about in it with cries
of joy. The lofty house which formed the back of the barricade,
being turned to the East, had upon its roof a rosy reflection.
The morning breeze ruffled the gray hair on the head of the dead man
at the third-story window.
"I am delighted that the torch has been extinguished," said Courfeyrac
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Mrs. Warren's Profession by George Bernard Shaw:
gateway] Where are you going to? Where shall we find you?
VIVIE. At Honoria Fraser's chambers, 67 Chancery Lane, for the
rest of my life. [She goes off quickly in the opposite direction
to that taken by Crofts].
FRANK. But I say--wait--dash it! [He runs after her].
[Honoria Fraser's chambers in Chancery Lane. An office at the
top of New Stone Buildings, with a plate-glass window,
distempered walls, electric light, and a patent stove. Saturday
afternoon. The chimneys of Lincoln's Inn and the western sky
beyond are seen through the window. There is a double writing
|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 Early Short Fiction of Edith Wharton by Edith Wharton:
young man to be silent, and addressed himself earnestly to the
Senator. The latter, at first, would not draw breath to hear
him; but presently, sobering, he walked apart with the Count, and
the two conversed together out of earshot.
"My dear sir," said the Count, at length turning to Tony with a
perturbed countenance, "it is as I feared, and you are fallen
into a great misfortune."
"A great misfortune! A great trap, I call it!" shouted Tony,
whose blood, by this time, was boiling; but as he uttered the
word the beautiful Polixena cast such a stricken look on him that
he blushed up to the forehead.