|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Commission in Lunacy by Honore de Balzac:
lawyer's private room at unholy hours. Even thieves, as they passed
by, said, "That is his house," and respected it. The morning he gave
to the poor, the mid-day hours to criminals, the evening to law work.
Thus the gift of observation that characterized Popinot was
necessarily bifrons; he could guess the virtues of a pauper--good
feelings nipped, fine actions in embryo, unrecognized self-sacrifice,
just as he could read at the bottom of a man's conscience the faintest
outlines of a crime, the slenderest threads of wrongdoing, and infer
all the rest.
Popinot's inherited fortune was a thousand crowns a year. His wife,
sister to M. Bianchon SENIOR, a doctor at Sancerre, had brought him
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Lesson of the Master by Henry James:
success is what I see - the pomp of Ennismore Gardens!"
"Success?" - St. George's eyes had a cold fine light. "Do you call
it success to be spoken of as you'd speak of me if you were sitting
here with another artist - a young man intelligent and sincere like
yourself? Do you call it success to make you blush - as you would
blush! - if some foreign critic (some fellow, of course I mean, who
should know what he was talking about and should have shown you he
did, as foreign critics like to show it) were to say to you: 'He's
the one, in this country, whom they consider the most perfect,
isn't he?' Is it success to be the occasion of a young
Englishman's having to stammer as you would have to stammer at such