|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe:
that made a trade to delude women, and, as some have done,
get six or seven fortunes after one another, and then rifle and
run away from them; but he was really a gentleman, unfortunate
and low, but had lived well; and though, if I had had a fortune,
I should have been enraged at the slut for betraying me, yet
really for the man, a fortune would not have been ill bestowed
on him, for he was a lovely person indeed, of generous principles,
good sense, and of abundance of good-humour.
We had a great deal of close conversation that night, for we
neither of us slept much; he was as penitent for having put all
those cheats upon me as if it had been felony, and that he was
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Cromwell by William Shakespeare:
some English Beer into my belly.
What, Hodge, my father's man? by my hand, welcome!
How doth my father? what's the news at home?
Master Thomas, O God, master Thomas, your hand, glove
and all. This is to give you to understanding that your
father is in health, and Alice Downing here hath sent you
a Nutmeg, & Bess Makewater a race of Ginger; my fellow
Will & Tom hath between them sent you a dozen of points,
& good man Tolle of the Goat a pair of mittens; my self
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Prince by Nicolo Machiavelli:
its text is still disputable.
Machiavelli concludes his letter to Vettori thus: "And as to this
little thing [his book], when it has been read it will be seen that
during the fifteen years I have given to the study of statecraft I
have neither slept nor idled; and men ought ever to desire to be
served by one who has reaped experience at the expense of others. And
of my loyalty none could doubt, because having always kept faith I
could not now learn how to break it; for he who has been faithful and
honest, as I have, cannot change his nature; and my poverty is a
witness to my honesty."
Before Machiavelli had got "The Prince" off his hands he commenced his
|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 Catherine de Medici by Honore de Balzac:
without any result; the Huguenots could come and go at will. Blois is
an open hall with four entrances; whereas Amboise is a sack with a
"I shall not leave Catherine's side," said the cardinal.
"We have made a blunder," remarked the duke, who was playing with his
dagger, tossing it into the air and catching it by the hilt. "We ought
to have treated her as we did the Reformers,--given her complete
freedom of action and caught her in the act."
The cardinal looked at his brother for an instant and shook his head.
"What does Pardaillan want?" said the duke, observing the approach of
the young nobleman who was later to become celebrated by his encounter