|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Droll Stories, V. 1 by Honore de Balzac:
disguise the affection which he bore him, looked at each other in
Then, seeing their uncle laughing, they said to him--
"If you will make a will, to whom will you leave the house?
"And the quit rent of the Rue St. Denys?"
"And the fief of Ville Parisis?"
"But," said the captain, with his big voice, "everything then will be
Droll Stories, V. 1
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Water-Babies by Charles Kingsley:
With Nature, the dear old Nurse,
Who sang to him night and day
The rhymes of the universe."
"Now," said Tom, "I am ready be off, if it's to the world's end."
"Ah!" said the fairy, "that is a brave, good boy. But you must go
farther than the world's end, if you want to find Mr. Grimes; for
he is at the Other-end-of-Nowhere. You must go to Shiny Wall, and
through the white gate that never was opened; and then you will
come to Peacepool, and Mother Carey's Haven, where the good whales
go when they die. And there Mother Carey will tell you the way to
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie:
In a few minutes I was knocking at the door of Leastways Cottage.
Getting no answer, I repeated my summons impatiently. A window
above me was cautiously opened, and Poirot himself looked out.
He gave an exclamation of surprise at seeing me. In a few brief
words, I explained the tragedy that had occurred, and that I
wanted his help.
"Wait, my friend, I will let you in, and you shall recount to me
the affair whilst I dress."
In a few moments he had unbarred the door, and I followed him up
to his room. There he installed me in a chair, and I related the
whole story, keeping back nothing, and omitting no circumstance,
The Mysterious Affair at Styles
|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 American by Henry James:
and stood looking at one of the rosy cherubs that was painted upon it.
"Of course I don't expect to marry any woman for the asking,"
he said at last; "I expect first to make myself acceptable to her.
She must like me, to begin with. But that I am not good enough
to make a trial is rather a surprise."
Bellegarde wore a look of mingled perplexity, sympathy, and amusement.
"You should not hesitate, then, to go up to-morrow and ask a duchess
to marry you?"
"Not if I thought she would suit me. But I am very fastidious;
she might not at all."
Bellegarde's amusement began to prevail. "And you should be surprised