|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Polly of the Circus by Margaret Mayo:
lips pressed tightly together, evidently expecting some startling
expression of wonder.
"And your father?" Douglas asked rather lamely, being at a loss
for any adequate comment upon a tragedy which the child before
him was too desolate even to understand.
"Oh, DAD'S finish was all right. He got his'n in a lion's cage
where he worked. There was nothing slow about his end." She
looked up for his approval.
"For de Lord's sake!" Mandy groaned as the wonder of the child's
conversation grew upon her.
"And now I'm down and out," Polly concluded with a sigh.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from All's Well That Ends Well by William Shakespeare:
patience to hear it.
[Re-enter Soldiers, with PAROLLES.]
A plague upon him! muffled! he can say nothing of me; hush, hush!
Hoodman comes! Porto tartarossa.
He calls for the tortures: what will you say without 'em?
I will confess what I know without constraint; if ye pinch me
like a pasty I can say no more.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Intentions by Oscar Wilde:
assumed by the critics that Shakespeare himself was more or less
indifferent to the costumes of his actors, and that, could he see
Mrs. Langtry's production of ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA, he would
probably say that the play, and the play only, is the thing, and
that everything else is leather and prunella. While, as regards
any historical accuracy in dress, Lord Lytton, in an article in the
NINETEENTH CENTURY, has laid it down as a dogma of art that
archaeology is entirely out of place in the presentation of any of
Shakespeare's plays, and the attempt to introduce it one of the
stupidest pedantries of an age of prigs.
Lord Lytton's position I shall examine later on; but, as regards
|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 Sesame and Lilies by John Ruskin:
there is in being serviceable: it is probable that, however limited
your powers, you have voice and ear enough to sustain a note of
moderate compass in a concerted piece;--that, then, is the first
thing to make sure you can do. Get your voice disciplined and
clear, and think only of accuracy; never of effect or expression:
if you have any soul worth expressing, it will show itself in your
singing; but most likely there are very few feelings in you, at
present, needing any particular expression; and the one thing you
have to do is to make a clear-voiced little instrument of yourself,
which other people can entirely depend upon for the note wanted.
So, in drawing, as soon as you can set down the right shape of