|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from La Grenadiere by Honore de Balzac:
for the clouds traced shadowy outlines, like the grandest Alpine
glaciers, against the sky. Mme. Willemsens' brows contracted
vehemently; there was a look of anguish and remorse in her eyes. She
caught the children's hands, and clutched them to a heavily-throbbing
" 'Parentage unknown!' " she cried, with a look that went to their
hearts. "Poor angels, what will become of you? And when you are twenty
years old, what strict account may you not require of my life and your
She put the children from her, and leaning her arms upon the
balustrade, stood for a while hiding her face, alone with herself,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Night and Day by Virginia Woolf:
twice or three times up and down Mary Datchet's street before the
recurrence of a light burning behind a thin, yellow blind caused them
to stop without exactly knowing why they did so. It burned itself into
"That is the light in Mary's room," said Ralph. "She must be at home."
He pointed across the street. Katharine's eyes rested there too.
"Is she alone, working at this time of night? What is she working at?"
she wondered. "Why should we interrupt her?" she asked passionately.
"What have we got to give her? She's happy too," she added. "She has
her work." Her voice shook slightly, and the light swam like an ocean
of gold behind her tears.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Master of the World by Jules Verne:
suffered would be themselves to blame.
There was an enormous crowd; and it was not composed only of the
people of Wisconsin. Many thousands gathered from the neighboring
states of Illinois, Michigan, Iowa, Indiana, and even from New York.
Among the sportsmen assembled were many foreigners, English, French,
Germans and Austrians, each nationality, of course, supporting the
chauffeurs of its land. Moreover, as this was the United States, the
country of the greatest gamblers of the world, bets were made of
every sort and of enormous amounts.
The start was to be made at eight o'clock in the morning; and to
avoid crowding and the accidents which must result from it, the
|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 Ebb-Tide by Stevenson & Osbourne:
and making yourself the butt and scoff of native seamen? Is that
what you mean? If it is, be so good as to say it categorically.'
'You put these things in a way hard for a gentleman to
swallow,' said the captain. 'You wouldn't have me say I was
ashamed of myself? Trust me this once; I'll do the square thing,
and there's my hand on it.'
'Well, I'll try it once,' said Herrick. 'Fail me again. . .'
'No more now!' interrupted Davis. 'No more, old man!
Enough said. You've a riling tongue when your back's up,
Herrick. Just be glad we're friends again, the same as what I
am; and go tender on the raws; I'll see as you don't repent it.