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Today's Stichomancy for Niccolo Machiavelli

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Simple Soul by Gustave Flaubert:

as if Loulou would never come back to his home. "They have stolen him," thought Felicite.

Finally he arrived, sitting bold upright on a branch which could be screwed into a mahogany pedestal, with his foot in the air, his head on one side, and in his beak a nut which the naturalist, from love of the sumptuous, had gilded. She put him in her room.

This place, to which only a chosen few were admitted, looked like a chapel and a second-hand shop, so filled was it with devotional and heterogeneous things. The door could not be opened easily on account of the presence of a large wardrobe. Opposite the window that looked out into the garden, a bull's-eye opened on the yard; a table was


A Simple Soul
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Voyage of the Beagle by Charles Darwin:

but during one Sunday the Indians made an attack and massacred the whole party, excepting two men, who remained captives during many years. At the Rio Negro I conversed with one of these men, now in extreme old age.

The zoology of Patagonia is as limited as its flora. [9] On the arid plains a few black beetles (Heteromera) might be seen slowly crawling about, and occasionally a lizard darted from side to side. Of birds we have three carrion hawks and in the valleys a few finches and insect-feeders. An ibis (Theristicus melanops -- a species said to be found in central Africa) is not uncommon on the most desert parts: in


The Voyage of the Beagle
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Human Drift by Jack London:

you may select those which most satisfy your aspirations.

"In the hope that you will look upon this in the same light as myself, I beg to be allowed to remain,

"Your most faithful servant,

" CAPTAIN ERNESTO BECUCCI."

Well, thought I, this Captain Ernesto Becucci has shown himself to be such an undependable person, that, while I don't mind rewarding him for his composition, I fear me if I do I never shall lay eyes on those leopard skins. So to Eliceo I gave this letter for the Captain:

"MY DEAR CAPTAIN BECUCCI:

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 On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin:

this fact that the structure of each squirrel is the best that it is possible to conceive under all natural conditions. Let the climate and vegetation change, let other competing rodents or new beasts of prey immigrate, or old ones become modified, and all analogy would lead us to believe that some at least of the squirrels would decrease in numbers or become exterminated, unless they also became modified and improved in structure in a corresponding manner. Therefore, I can see no difficulty, more especially under changing conditions of life, in the continued preservation of individuals with fuller and fuller flank-membranes, each modification being useful, each being propagated, until by the accumulated effects of this process of natural selection, a perfect so-called flying


On the Origin of Species