|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Study of a Woman by Honore de Balzac:
perhaps, not to show that they envy it. However, he replied with
"Why not, madame?"
Such are the blunders we all make at twenty-five.
This speech caused a violent commotion in Madame de Listomere's bosom;
but Rastignac did not yet know how to analyze a woman's face by a
rapid or sidelong glance. The lips of the marquise paled, but that was
all. She rang the bell for wood, and so constrained Rastignac to rise
and take his leave.
"If that be so," said the marquise, stopping Eugene with a cold and
rigid manner, "you will find it difficult to explain, monsieur, why
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Tramp Abroad by Mark Twain:
a thermometer. So I sent a strong party, with some
borrowed hoes, in charge of two chiefs of service, to dig
a stairway in the soil all the way up, and this I ascended,
roped to the guides. This breezy height was the summit
proper--so I accomplished even more than I had originally
purposed to do. This foolhardy exploit is recorded on
another stone monument.
I boiled my thermometer, and sure enough, this spot,
which purported to be two thousand feet higher than the
locality of the hotel, turned out to be nine thousand
feet LOWER. Thus the fact was clearly demonstrated that,
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu by Sax Rohmer:
scent crept to my nostrils, too, and there was a subdued stir about me,
Now my feet sank in a soft carpet, and a curtain brushed my shoulder.
A gong sounded. We stopped.
The din of distant drumming came to my ears.
"Where in Heaven's name are we?" hissed Smith in my ear;
"that is a tom-tom!"
The little hand grasping mine quivered nervously. We were near a door
or a window, for a breath of perfume was wafted through the air;
and it reminded me of my other meetings with the beautiful woman
The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu
|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 Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson:
half-way open; and sitting close beside it, taking the air with an
infinite sadness of mien, like some disconsolate prisoner,
Utterson saw Dr. Jekyll.
"What! Jekyll!" he cried. "I trust you are better."
"I am very low, Utterson," replied the doctor drearily, "very
low. It will not last long, thank God."
"You stay too much indoors," said the lawyer. "You should be
out, whipping up the circulation like Mr. Enfield and me. (This
is my cousin--Mr. Enfield--Dr. Jekyll.) Come now; get your
hat and take a quick turn with us."
"You are very good," sighed the other. "I should like to very
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde