|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Intentions by Oscar Wilde:
planted round his garden a hedge full of thorns, and red with
wonderful roses. As for Balzac, he was a most remarkable
combination of the artistic temperament with the scientific spirit.
The latter he bequeathed to his disciples. The former was entirely
his own. The difference between such a book as M. Zola's
L'ASSOMMOIR and Balzac's ILLUSIONS PERDUES is the difference
between unimaginative realism and imaginative reality. 'All
Balzac's characters;' said Baudelaire, 'are gifted with the same
ardour of life that animated himself. All his fictions are as
deeply coloured as dreams. Each mind is a weapon loaded to the
muzzle with will. The very scullions have genius.' A steady
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Tono Bungay by H. G. Wells:
To begin with, Gordon-Nasmyth was inclined to be dramatic.
"Look here," he said when he first came in, shutting the door
rather carefully behind him as he spoke, "do you two men--yes
or no--want to put up six thousand--for--a clear good chance of
fifteen hundred per cent. on your money in a year?"
"We're always getting chances like that," said my uncle, cocking
his cigar offensively, wiping his glasses and tilting his chair
back. "We stick to a safe twenty."
Gordon-Nasmyth's quick temper showed in a slight stiffening of