|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Finished by H. Rider Haggard:
then we do retain some recollection.
In this curious condition of mind it seemed to me that Rodd said
"Why have you brought these men here?"
"I did not bring them here," he answered. "Luck, Fate, Fortune,
God or the Devil, call it what you will, brought them here,
though if you had your wish, it is true they would never have
come. Still, as they have come, I am glad. It is something to
me, living in this hell, to get a chance of talking to English
gentlemen again before I die."
"English gentlemen," remarked Rodd reflectively, "Well, Anscombe
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Protagoras by Plato:
Delightful, I said; but what is the news? and why have you come hither at
this unearthly hour?
He drew nearer to me and said: Protagoras is come.
Yes, I replied; he came two days ago: have you only just heard of his
Yes, by the gods, he said; but not until yesterday evening.
At the same time he felt for the truckle-bed, and sat down at my feet, and
then he said: Yesterday quite late in the evening, on my return from Oenoe
whither I had gone in pursuit of my runaway slave Satyrus, as I meant to
have told you, if some other matter had not come in the way;--on my return,
when we had done supper and were about to retire to rest, my brother said
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Familiar Studies of Men and Books by Robert Louis Stevenson:
thrown out in unnatural isolation, but is resumed into its
place in the constitution of things.
It is this change in the manner of regarding men and their
actions first exhibited in romance, that has since renewed
and vivified history. For art precedes philosophy and even
science. People must have noticed things and interested
themselves in them before they begin to debate upon their
causes or influence. And it is in this way that art is the
pioneer of knowledge; those predilections of the artist he
knows not why, those irrational acceptations and
recognitions, reclaim, out of the world that we have not yet
|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 Under the Red Robe by Stanley Weyman:
lips and pointed to his throat with a horrid gesture, and I shook
my head and turned from him--'You can let me have some bedding?'
I murmured hastily, for the sake of saying something, and to
'Of course, Monsieur,' Louis answered. 'I will fetch some.'
He went away, thinking doubtless that Clon would stay with me.
But after waiting a minute the porter strode off also with the
lanthorn, leaving me to stand in the middle of the damp, dark
room and reflect on the position. It was plain that Clon
suspected me. This prison-like room, with its barred window, at
the back of the house, and in the wing farthest from the stables,