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Today's Stichomancy for Voltaire

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Myths and Myth-Makers by John Fiske:

this is a degradation of the original conception. The name Erinys did not originally mean Fury, and it cannot be explained from Greek sources alone. It appears in Sanskrit as Saranyu, a word which signifies the light of morning creeping over the sky. And thus we are led to the startling conclusion that, as the light of morning reveals the evil deeds done under the cover of night, so the lovely Dawn, or Erinys, came to be regarded under one aspect as the terrible detector and avenger of iniquity. Yet startling as the conclusion is, it is based on established laws of phonetic change, and cannot be gainsaid.

Myths and Myth-Makers
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte by Karl Marx:

phrases together with actual doubt and helplessness; of more enthusiastic reform aspirations, together with a more slavish adherence to the old routine; more seeming harmony permeating the whole of society together with a deeper alienation of its several elements. While the Parisian proletariat was still gloating over the sight of the great perspective that had disclosed itself to their view, and was indulging in seriously meant discussions over the social problems, the old powers of society had groomed themselves, had gathered together, had deliberated and found an unexpected support in the mass of the nation--the peasants and small traders--all of whom threw themselves on a sudden upon the political stage, after the barriers of the July

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Tess of the d'Urbervilles, A Pure Woman by Thomas Hardy:


"And begad, so 't have!" said the dairyman, who held in his left hand a wooden slice on which a lump of butter was stuck. "Yes--taste for yourself!"

Several of them gathered round him; and Mr Clare tasted, Tess tasted, also the other indoor milkmaids, one or two of the milking-men, and last of all Mrs Crick, who came out from the waiting breakfast-table. There certainly was a twang.

The dairyman, who had thrown himself into abstraction to better realize the taste, and so divine the

Tess of the d'Urbervilles, A Pure Woman
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 Letters from England by Elizabeth Davis Bancroft:

After the ceremony there were a crowd of visitors at the Dean's, and I met many old acquaintances, and made many new ones, among whom were Lady Chantrey, a nice person. After the crowd cleared off, we sat down to a long table at lunch, always an important meal here, and afterward the Dean took me on his arm and showed me everything within the Abbey precincts. He took us first to the Percy Chapel to see the vault of the Percys. . . . From thence the Dean took us to the Jerusalem chamber where Henry IV died, then all over the Westminster school. We first went to the hall where the young men were eating their dinner. . . . We then went to the school-room, where every inch of the wall and benches is covered with names, some