|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Four Arthurian Romances by Chretien DeTroyes:
battleaxe, defended himself with great bravery. Those whom he
reaches, he splits in half. And his men line up about him, and
are not slow to avenge themselves in this last stand of the day,
Alexander's men have reason to complain, for of the original
sixteen there remain now but thirteen. Alexander is almost
beside himself when he sees the havoc wrought among his dead or
exhausted followers. Yet his thoughts are fixed on vengeance:
finding at hand a long heavy club, he struck one of the rascals
with it so fiercely that neither shield nor hauberk was worth a
button in preventing him from failing to the ground. After
finishing with him, he pursues the Count, and raising his club to
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne:
must necessarily be a guilty man.--And, on the contrary, when the report is
favourable on his side, and his heart condemns him not:--that it is not a
matter of trust, as the apostle intimates, but a matter of certainty and
fact, that the conscience is good, and that the man must be good also.'
(Then the apostle is altogether in the wrong, I suppose, quoth Dr. Slop,
and the Protestant divine is in the right. Sir, have patience, replied my
father, for I think it will presently appear that St. Paul and the
Protestant divine are both of an opinion.--As nearly so, quoth Dr. Slop, as
east is to west;--but this, continued he, lifting both hands, comes from
the liberty of the press.
It is no more at the worst, replied my uncle Toby, than the liberty of the
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Timaeus by Plato:
taste reach from the tongue to the heart. Plato has a lively sense of the
manner in which sensation and motion are communicated from one part of the
body to the other, though he confuses the affections with the organs.
Hearing is a blow which passes through the ear and ends in the region of
the liver, being transmitted by means of the air, the brain, and the blood
to the soul. The swifter sound is acute, the sound which moves slowly is
grave. A great body of sound is loud, the opposite is low. Discord is
produced by the swifter and slower motions of two sounds, and is converted
into harmony when the swifter motions begin to pause and are overtaken by
The general phenomena of sensation are partly internal, but the more
|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 Marriage Contract by Honore de Balzac:
behind the stage on which they have played a scene of hatred and
"But," said Solonet, thinking of his rights as notary, "isn't it my
place to buy that land you mentioned? The money is part of our dowry."
"How can you put property bought in the name of Mademoiselle
Evangelista into the creation of an entail by the Comte de
Manerville?" replied Mathias.
"We shall have to ask the chancellor about that," said Solonet.
"But I am the notary of the seller as well as of the buyer of that
land," said Mathias. "Besides, Monsieur de Manerville can buy in his
own name. At the time of payment we can make mention of the fact that