|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Twenty Years After by Alexandre Dumas:
pistols by his side, stretched his cloak over his feet,
placed his felt hat on the top of his cloak and extended
himself luxuriously on the straw, which rustled under him.
He was already enjoying the sweet dream engendered by the
possession of two hundred and nineteen louis, made in a
quarter of an hour, when a voice was heard at the door of
the hall, which made him stir.
"Monsieur d'Artagnan!" it cried.
"Here!" cried Porthos, "here!"
Porthos foresaw that if D'Artagnan was called away he should
remain the sole possessor of the bed. An officer approached.
Twenty Years After
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Taras Bulba and Other Tales by Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol:
wrote, and finally concocted the following document:-
"To the District Judge of Mirgorod, from the noble, Ivan Dovgotchkun,
son of Nikifor.
"In pursuance of my plaint which was presented by me, Ivan
Dovgotchkun, son of Nikifor, against the nobleman, Ivan Pererepenko,
son of Ivan, to which the judge of the Mirgorod district court has
exhibited indifference; and the shameless, high-handed deed of the
brown sow being kept secret, and coming to my ears from outside
"And the said neglect, plainly malicious, lies incontestably at the
judge's door; for the sow is a stupid animal, and therefore unfitted
Taras Bulba and Other Tales
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Ann Veronica by H. G. Wells:
"Umph!" he said, and regarded his letter doubtfully before
consigning it to the pillar-box. "Here goes," he said. Then he
hovered undecidedly for some seconds with his hands in his
pockets and his mouth puckered to a whistle before he turned to
go home by the Avenue.
Ann Veronica forgot him as soon as she was through the gate, and
her face resumed its expression of stern preoccupation. "It's
either now or never," she said to herself. . . .
Morningside Park was a suburb that had not altogether, as people
say, come off. It consisted, like pre-Roman Gaul, of three
parts. There was first the Avenue, which ran in a consciously
|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 Tapestried Chamber by Walter Scott:
endeavoured to mitigate and soothe the despair of her father.
But this was impossible; the old man's only tie to life was rent
rudely asunder, and his heart had broken with it. The death of
his son had no part in his sorrow. If he thought of him at all,
it was as the degenerate boy through whom the honour of his
country and clan had been lost; and he died in the course of
three days, never even mentioning his name, but pouring out
unintermitted lamentations for the loss of his noble sword.
I conceive that the moment when the disabled chief was roused
into a last exertion by the agony of the moment is favourable to
the object of a painter. He might obtain the full advantage of