|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:
as many ill-bred persons are apt to do. He rang for his valet, ordered
tea, and drank immoderately of it when it came; which will not seem
extraordinary to persons who like tea; but to explain the circumstance
to others, who regard that beverage as a panacea for indigestion, I
will add that Eugene was, by this time, writing letters. He was
comfortably seated, with his feet more frequently on the andirons
than, properly, on the rug. Ah! to have one's feet on the polished bar
which connects the two griffins of a fender, and to think of our love
in our dressing-gown is so delightful a thing that I deeply regret the
fact of having neither mistress, nor fender, nor dressing-gown.
The first letter which Eugene wrote was soon finished; he folded and
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy:
"She is very unpleasant."
"Yes," Thomasin murmured, "and I suppose I seem
so now....Damon, what do you mean to do about me?"
"Do about you?"
"Yes. Those who don't like you whisper things which at
moments make me doubt you. We mean to marry, I suppose,
"Of course we do. We have only to go to Budmouth on Monday,
and we marry at once."
"Then do let us go!--O Damon, what you make me say!"
Return of the Native
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Youth by Joseph Conrad:
an open boat. I remember nights and days of calm when
we pulled, we pulled, and the boat seemed to stand still,
as if bewitched within the circle of the sea horizon. I
remember the heat, the deluge of rain-squalls that kept
us baling for dear life (but filled our water-cask), and I
remember sixteen hours on end with a mouth dry as a
cinder and a steering-oar over the stern to keep my first
command head on to a breaking sea. I did not know how
good a man I was till then. I remember the drawn faces,
the dejected figures of my two men, and I remember my
youth and the feeling that will never come back any
|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 Little Britain by Washington Irving:
behindhand: and though they might not boast of as good
company, yet they had double the number, and were twice as
The whole community has at length divided itself into
fashionable factions, under the banners of these two families.
The old games of Pope-Joan and Tom-come-tickle-me are
entirely discarded; there is no such thing as getting up an
honest country dance; and on my attempting to kiss a young
lady under the mistletoe last Christmas, I was indignantly
repulsed; the Miss Lambs having pronounced it "shocking
vulgar." Bitter rivalry has also broken out as to the most