|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Prince by Nicolo Machiavelli:
odious to his subjects, and becoming poor he will be little valued by
any one; thus, with his liberality, having offended many and rewarded
few, he is affected by the very first trouble and imperilled by
whatever may be the first danger; recognizing this himself, and
wishing to draw back from it, he runs at once into the reproach of
Therefore, a prince, not being able to exercise this virtue of
liberality in such a way that it is recognized, except to his cost, if
he is wise he ought not to fear the reputation of being mean, for in
time he will come to be more considered than if liberal, seeing that
with his economy his revenues are enough, that he can defend himself
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Catriona by Robert Louis Stevenson:
She shook her head at me with that same smile I could have struck her
"O, smile away!" I cried. "I have seen your bonny father smile on the
wrong side this day. Not that I mean he was afraid, of course," I
added hastily, "but he preferred the other way of it."
"What is this?" she asked.
"When I offered to draw with him," said I.
"You offered to draw upon James More!" she cried.
"And I did so," said I, "and found him backward enough, or how would we
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Reef by Edith Wharton:
he must let her go without insisting on any positive
promise. She's excited...he must let her calm down..."
Again she waited, and Darrow said: "Surely you can make him
"She'll help me to--she's to see him, of course, before she
goes. She starts immediately, by the way, with Adelaide
Painter, who is motoring over to Francheuil to catch the one
o'clock express--and who, of course, knows nothing of all
this, and is simply to be told that Sophy has been sent for
by the Farlows."
Darrow mutely signed his comprehension, and she went on:
|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 Herodias by Gustave Flaubert:
overcome with faintness. The tetrarch watched her, lost in a
voluptuous reverie, and thought no more of the real Herodias. In fancy
he saw her again as she appeared when she had dwelt among the
Sadducees. Then the vision faded.
But this beautiful thing before him was no vision. The dancer was
Salome, the daughter of Herodias, who for many months her mother had
caused to be instructed in dancing, and other arts of pleasing, with
the sole idea of bringing her to Machaerus and presenting her to the
tetrarch, so that he should fall in love with her fresh young beauty
and feminine wiles. The plan had proved successful, it seemed; he was
evidently fascinated, and Herodias felt that at last she was sure of