|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Legend of Montrose by Walter Scott:
fastnesses into which they endeavoured to penetrate. At length,
on the rapid advance of Montrose's army, his advanced guard and
the outposts of Argyle became aware of each other's presence, and
after exchanging a few musket-shots and arrows, fell back to
their respective main bodies, to convey intelligence and receive
Sir Duncan Campbell, and Auchenbreck, instantly threw themselves
on horseback, in order to visit the state of the outposts; and
Argyle maintained his character of commander-in-chief with
reputation, by making a respectable arrangement of his forces in
the plain, as it was evident that they might now expect a night
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from In a German Pension by Katherine Mansfield:
A tremendous gust of wind sprang upon the house, seized it, shook it,
dropped, only to grip the more tightly. The waves swelled up along the
breakwater and were whipped with broken foam. Over the white sky flew
tattered streamers of grey cloud.
Andreas felt quite relieved to hear Doctor Erb coming down the stairs; he
got up and lit the gas.
"Mind if I smoke in here?" asked Doctor Erb, lighting a cigarette before
Andreas had time to answer. "You don't smoke, do you? No time to indulge
in pernicious little habits!"
"How is she now?" asked Andreas, loathing the man.
"Oh, well as can be expected, poor little soul. She begged me to come down
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Grimm's Fairy Tales by Brothers Grimm:
gentleman still said to every one of them, 'Madam, that is not my
The third day one of the messengers came back, and said, 'I have
travelled two days without hearing of any other names; but yesterday,
as I was climbing a high hill, among the trees of the forest where the
fox and the hare bid each other good night, I saw a little hut; and
before the hut burnt a fire; and round about the fire a funny little
dwarf was dancing upon one leg, and singing:
'"Merrily the feast I'll make.
Today I'll brew, tomorrow bake;
Merrily I'll dance and sing,
Grimm's Fairy Tales
|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 Mirror of the Sea by Joseph Conrad:
wonderfully the flowing grace of the lines on which a ship's hull
is built. The lightness of these forms, devised to meet the winds
and the seas, makes, by contrast with the great piles of bricks,
the chains and cables of their moorings appear very necessary, as
if nothing less could prevent them from soaring upwards and over
the roofs. The least puff of wind stealing round the corners of
the dock buildings stirs these captives fettered to rigid shores.
It is as if the soul of a ship were impatient of confinement.
Those masted hulls, relieved of their cargo, become restless at the
slightest hint of the wind's freedom. However tightly moored, they
range a little at their berths, swaying imperceptibly the spire-
The Mirror of the Sea