|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Aesop's Fables by Aesop:
and again he tried after the tempting morsel, but at last had to
give it up, and walked away with his nose in the air, saying: "I
am sure they are sour."
It is easy to despise what you cannot get.
The Horse, Hunter, and Stag
A quarrel had arisen between the Horse and the Stag, so the
Horse came to a Hunter to ask his help to take revenge on the
Stag. The Hunter agreed, but said: "If you desire to conquer the
Stag, you must permit me to place this piece of iron between your
jaws, so that I may guide you with these reins, and allow this
saddle to be placed upon your back so that I may keep steady upon
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Gambara by Honore de Balzac:
"Beethoven is not yet understood," said the Count. "How can he be
Gambara drank a large glass of champagne, accompanying the draught by
a covert smile of approval.
"Beethoven," the Count went on, "extended the limits of instrumental
music, and no one followed in his track."
Gambara assented with a nod.
"His work is especially noteworthy for simplicity of construction and
for the way the scheme is worked out," the Count went on. "Most
composers make use of the orchestral parts in a vague, incoherent way,
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Two Noble Kinsmen by William Shakespeare:
Once more farewell, my Cosen.
Farewell, Arcite. [Fight.]
[Hornes within: they stand.]
Loe, Cosen, loe, our Folly has undon us.
This is the Duke, a hunting as I told you.
If we be found, we are wretched. O retire
|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 Crito by Plato:
travel as other men do. Nor had you any curiosity to know other states or
their laws: your affections did not go beyond us and our state; we were
your especial favourites, and you acquiesced in our government of you; and
here in this city you begat your children, which is a proof of your
satisfaction. Moreover, you might in the course of the trial, if you had
liked, have fixed the penalty at banishment; the state which refuses to let
you go now would have let you go then. But you pretended that you
preferred death to exile (compare Apol.), and that you were not unwilling
to die. And now you have forgotten these fine sentiments, and pay no
respect to us the laws, of whom you are the destroyer; and are doing what
only a miserable slave would do, running away and turning your back upon