|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Deserted Woman by Honore de Balzac:
crossed Mme. de Beauseant's park on his way home, summoned Jacques,
and when the man came, asked him, "Whether the Marquise was as fond of
game as ever?"
Jacques answering in the affirmative, Gaston offered him a good round
sum (accompanied by plenty of specious reasoning) for a very little
service. Would he set aside for the Marquise the game that the Count
would bring? It seemed to Jacques to be a matter of no great
importance whether the partridge on which his mistress dined had been
shot by her keeper or by M. de Nueil, especially since the latter
particularly wished that the Marquise should know nothing about it.
"It was killed on her land," said the Count, and for some days Jacques
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Vendetta by Honore de Balzac:
hurried past the windows of the money-changers where gold was
glittering; and at last he resolved to sell himself to be a substitute
for military service, hoping that this sacrifice would save Ginevra,
and that her father, during his absence, would take her home.
He went to one of those agents who manage these transactions, and felt
a sort of happiness in recognizing an old officer of the Imperial
"It is two days since I have eaten anything," he said to him in a
slow, weak voice. "My wife is dying of hunger, and has never uttered
one word of complaint; she will die smiling, I think. For God's sake,
comrade," he added, bitterly, "buy me in advance; I am robust; I am no
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne:
thoughts turning pale.
HESTER AND PEARL 215
"What has the letter to do with any heart save mine?"
"Nay, mother, I have told all I know," said Pearl, more seriously
The Scarlet Letter
|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 Lucile by Owen Meredith:
Of the Arab to follow! I go! vive la France!"
Few and rare were the meetings henceforth, as years fled,
'Twixt the child and the soldier. The two women led
Lone lives in the lone house. Meanwhile the child grew
Into girlhood; and, like a sunbeam, sliding through
Her green quiet years, changed by gentle degrees
To the loveliest vision of youth a youth sees
In his loveliest fancies: as pure as a pearl,
And as perfect: a noble and innocent girl,
With eighteen sweet summers dissolved in the light
Of her lovely and lovable eyes, soft and bright!