|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Chouans by Honore de Balzac:
begins, organizing into regular legions the various weak and scattered
companies. These legions were to bear the names of the departments,--
Sarthe, Orne, Mayenne, Ille-et-Vilaine, Morbihan, Loire-Inferieure,
and Maine-et-Loire. "These legions," said the law, "will be specially
employed to fight the Chouans, and cannot, under any pretence, be sent
to the frontier."
The foregoing irksome details will explain both the weakness of the
Directory and the movement of this troop of men under escort of the
Blues. It may not be superfluous to add that these finely patriotic
Directorial decrees had no realization beyond their insertion among
the statutes. No longer restrained, as formerly, by great moral ideas,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Child of Storm by H. Rider Haggard:
heavy one indeed.
Now, the moon would not be up till midnight. But two hours before that
time we began our moves, since the cattle must be driven out of the
kraals as soon as she appeared and gave the needful light. Otherwise
the fight in the pass would in all probability be delayed till after
sunrise, when the Amakoba would see how small was the number of their
foes. Terror, doubt, darkness--these must be our allies if our
desperate venture was to succeed.
All was arranged at last and the time had come. We, the three captains
of our divided force, bade each other farewell, and passed the word down
the ranks that, should we be separated by the accidents of war, my
Child of Storm
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from McTeague by Frank Norris:
carrying the sack close to his side. Once he looked
critically at the sky.
"I bet it'll rain to-morrow," he muttered, "if this wind
works round to the south."
Once in his little den behind the music store, he washed his
hands and forearms, and put on his working clothes, blue
overalls and a jumper, over cheap trousers and vest. Then
he got together his small belongings--an old campaign hat, a
pair of boots, a tin of tobacco, and a pinchbeck bracelet
which he had found one Sunday in the Park, and which he
believed to be valuable. He stripped his blanket from his
|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 Facino Cane by Honore de Balzac:
gold which must be gratified. Gold is so much of a necessity of life
for me, that I have never been without it; I must have gold to toy
with and finger. As a young man I always wore jewelry, and I carried
two or three hundred ducats about me wherever I went."
He drew a couple of gold coins from his pocket and showed them to me
as he spoke.
"I can tell by instinct when gold is near. Blind as I am, I stop
before a jeweler's shop windows. That passion was the ruin of me; I
took to gambling to play with gold. I was not a cheat, I was cheated,
I ruined myself. I lost all my fortune. Then the longing to see Bianca
once more possessed me like a frenzy. I stole back to Venice and found