|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen:
Nobody knew; nobody could give any intelligence. All the boys knew was, that
they had seen him tie his sledge to another large and splendid one, which
drove down the street and out of the town. Nobody knew where he was; many sad
tears were shed, and little Gerda wept long and bitterly; at last she said he
must be dead; that he had been drowned in the river which flowed close to the
town. Oh! those were very long and dismal winter evenings!
At last spring came, with its warm sunshine.
"Kay is dead and gone!" said little Gerda.
"That I don't believe," said the Sunshine.
"Kay is dead and gone!" said she to the Swallows.
"That I don't believe," said they: and at last little Gerda did not think so
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Ferragus by Honore de Balzac:
multiplies and magnifies her; next low divans, and a bed which, like a
secret, is divined, not shown. In this coquettish chamber are fur-
lined slippers for pretty feet, wax-candles under glass with muslin
draperies, by which to read at all hours of the night, and flowers,
not those oppressive to the head, and linen, the fineness of which
might have satisfied Anne of Austria.
Madame Jules had realized this charming programme, but that was
nothing. All women of taste can do as much, though there is always in
the arrangement of these details a stamp of personality which gives to
this decoration or that detail a character that cannot be imitated.
To-day, more than ever, reigns the fanaticism of individuality. The
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table by Oliver Wendell Holmes:
don't puncture their swimming-bladders; don't come down on their
pasteboard boxes; don't break the ends of their brittle and
unstable reputations, you fellows who all feel sure that your names
will be household words a thousand years from now.
"A thousand years is a good while," said the old gentleman who sits
- Where have I been for the last three or four days? Down at the
Island, deer-shooting. - How many did I bag? I brought home one
buck shot. - The Island is where? No matter. It is the most
splendid domain that any man looks upon in these latitudes. Blue
sea around it, and running up into its heart, so that the little
The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table
|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 Works of Samuel Johnson by Samuel Johnson:
her from the embraces of the genius of the rocks,
snatch her from the paws of Amarock, and rescue
her from the ravine of Hafgufa." He concluded
with a wish, that "whoever shall attempt to hinder
his union with Ajut, might be buried without his
bow, and that, in the land of souls, his skull might
serve for no other use than to catch the droppings
of the starry lamps."
This ode being universally applauded, it was
expected that Ajut would soon yield to such fervour
and accomplishments; but Ajut, with the natural