|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Pierrette by Honore de Balzac:
what is more, a Chargeboeuf. You will not be so exacting as those apes
of the Upper town; /you/ won't require a good little housewife, who is
compelled by the meanness of her family to do her own work, to dress
like a duchess. Poor woman, she has the courage of a lion and the
meekness of a lamb."
Sylvie Rogron showed her long yellow teeth as she smiled on the
colonel, who bore the sight heroically and assumed a flattered air.
"If we are only four we can't play boston every night," said Sylvie.
"Why not? What do you suppose an old soldier of the Empire like me
does with himself? And as for Vinet, his evenings are always free.
Besides, you'll have plenty of other visitors; I warrant you that," he
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Seraphita by Honore de Balzac:
of the earthly desire that kills, "I, too, know how powerful is her
empire over me, and I will undeceive you."
At this moment, while the words were rushing from Wilfrid's lips as
rapidly as the thoughts surged in his brain, they saw Seraphita coming
towards them from the house, followed by David. The apparition calmed
the man's excitement.
"Look," he said, "could any but a woman move with that grace and
"He suffers; he comes forth for the last time," said Minna.
David went back at a sign from his mistress, who advanced towards
Wilfrid and Minna.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Sanitary and Social Lectures by Charles Kingsley:
small size of the average young woman; by which I do not mean mere
want of height--that is a little matter--but want of breadth
likewise; a general want of those large frames, which indicate
usually a power of keeping strong and healthy not merely the
muscles, but the brain itself.
Poor little things. I passed hundreds--I pass hundreds every day-
-trying to hide their littleness by the nasty mass of false hair--
or what does duty for it; and by the ugly and useless hat which is
stuck upon it, making the head thereby look ridiculously large and
heavy; and by the high heels on which they totter onward, having
forgotten, or never learnt, the simple art of walking; their
|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 Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen:
by the present of a thousand pounds a-piece. He then
really thought himself equal to it. The prospect of four
thousand a-year, in addition to his present income,
besides the remaining half of his own mother's fortune,
warmed his heart, and made him feel capable of generosity.--
"Yes, he would give them three thousand pounds: it would
be liberal and handsome! It would be enough to make
them completely easy. Three thousand pounds! he could
spare so considerable a sum with little inconvenience."--
He thought of it all day long, and for many days successively,
and he did not repent.
Sense and Sensibility