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Today's Stichomancy for Richard Wilhelm

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Tragedy of Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain:

a card again. Anyway, I won't while he lives, I make oath to that. I'm entering on my last reform--I know it--yes, and I'll win; but after that, if I ever slip again I'm gone."

CHAPTER 13

Tom Stares at Ruin

When I reflect upon the number of disagreeable people who I know have gone to a better world, I am moved to lead a different life.

--Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar

October. This is one of the peculiarly dangerous months to speculate in stocks in. The others are July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June, December, August, and February.

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy:

The policeman thereupon lay in wait for Jude, and one day accosted him and cautioned him.

As Jude had to get up at three o'clock in the morning to heat the oven, and mix and set in the bread that he distributed later in the day, he was obliged to go to bed at night immediately after laying the sponge; so that if he could not read his classics on the highways he could hardly study at all. The only thing to be done was, therefore, to keep a sharp eye ahead and around him as well as he could in the circumstances, and slip away his books as soon as anybody loomed in the distance, the policeman in particular. To do that official justice, he did not put himself much in the way of Jude's bread-cart, considering


Jude the Obscure
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Maitre Cornelius by Honore de Balzac:

persons detached itself from the flood which obstructed the great portals, and poured through the side aisle around the old lord and his party. The mass was too compact to allow him to retrace his steps, and he and his wife were therefore pushed onward to the door by the pressure of the multitude behind them. The husband tried to pass out first, dragging the lady by the arm, but at that instant he was pulled vigorously into the street, and his wife was torn from him by a stranger. The terrible hunchback saw at once that he had fallen into a trap that was cleverly prepared. Repenting himself for having slept, he collected his whole strength, seized his wife once more by the sleeve of her gown, and strove with his other hand to cling to the

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 Underground City by Jules Verne:

subject to an equable temperature; the old overman endured neither the heat of summer nor the cold of winter. His family enjoyed good health; what more could he desire?

But at heart he felt depressed. He missed the former animation, movement, and life in the well-worked pit. He was, however, supported by one fixed idea. "No, no! the mine is not exhausted!" he repeated.

And that man would have given serious offense who could have ventured to express before Simon Ford any doubt that old Aberfoyle would one day revive! He had never given up the hope of discovering some new bed which would restore the mine to its past splendor.