|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving:
had been equally great in the field, not one of whom but was
persuaded that he had a considerable hand in bringing the war to
a happy termination.
But all these were nothing to the tales of ghosts and
apparitions that succeeded. The neighborhood is rich in legendary
treasures of the kind. Local tales and superstitions thrive best
in these sheltered, long settled retreats; but are trampled under
foot by the shifting throng that forms the population of most of
our country places. Besides, there is no encouragement for ghosts
in most of our villages, for they have scarcely had time to
finish their first nap and turn themselves in their graves,
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Gobseck by Honore de Balzac:
"The Count seemed to be entirely absorbed in his own thoughts.
" 'You shall have your money to-morrow,' he said, 'have the diamonds
in readiness,' and he went.
" 'There goes one who looks to me to be as stupid as an honest man,'
Gobseck said coolly when the Count had gone.
" 'Say rather stupid as a man of passionate nature.'
" 'The Count owes you your fee for drawing up the agreement!' Gobseck
called after me as I took my leave.
"One morning, a few days after the scene which initiated me into the
terrible depths beneath the surface of the life of a woman of fashion,
the Count came into my private office.