|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Beast in the Jungle by Henry James:
That recovery, the first day at Weatherend, had served its purpose
well, had given them quite enough; so that they were, to Marcher's
sense, no longer hovering about the head-waters of their stream,
but had felt their boat pushed sharply off and down the current.
They were literally afloat together; for our gentleman this was
marked, quite as marked as that the fortunate cause of it was just
the buried treasure of her knowledge. He had with his own hands
dug up this little hoard, brought to light--that is to within reach
of the dim day constituted by their discretions and privacies--the
object of value the hiding-place of which he had, after putting it
into the ground himself, so strangely, so long forgotten. The rare
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Albert Savarus by Honore de Balzac:
much at home at her house.
At a ceremonial dinner given in honor of I know not whose wedding, at
the beginning of September 1834, when the women were standing in a
circle round the drawing-room fire, and the men in groups by the
windows, every one exclaimed with pleasure at the entrance of Monsieur
l'Abbe de Grancey, who was announced.
"Well, and the lawsuit?" they all cried.
"Won!" replied the Vicar-General. "The verdict of the Court, from
which we had no hope, you know why----"
This was an allusion to the members of the First Court of Appeal of
1830; the Legitimists had almost all withdrawn.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Iliad by Homer:
Patroclus. He stood up and said among the Argives, "We bid two
champions put on their armour, take their keen blades, and make
trial of one another in the presence of the multitude; whichever
of them can first wound the flesh of the other, cut through his
armour, and draw blood, to him will I give this goodly Thracian
sword inlaid with silver, which I took from Asteropaeus, but the
armour let both hold in partnership, and I will give each of them
a hearty meal in my own tent."
Forthwith uprose great Ajax the son of Telamon, as also mighty
Diomed son of Tydeus. When they had put on their armour each on
his own side of the ring, they both went into the middle eager to
|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 Herland by Charlotte Gilman:
preserve and enrich the soil.
Due regard had been paid to seasonable crops, and their fruit
and nuts, grains and berries, kept on almost the year through.
On the higher part of the country, near the backing wall of
mountains, they had a real winter with snow. Toward the south-
eastern point, where there was a large valley with a lake whose
outlet was subterranean, the climate was like that of California,
and citrus fruits, figs, and olives grew abundantly.
What impressed me particularly was their scheme of fertilization.
Here was this little shut-in piece of land where one would have
thought an ordinary people would have been starved out long ago