|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Man of Business by Honore de Balzac:
" 'Well, he is at present your creditor for a matter of three thousand
two hundred francs, seventy-five centimes, principal, interest, and
" 'Coutelier's business?' put in Maxime, who knew his affairs as a
pilot knows his coast.
" 'Yes, Monsieur le Comte,' said Cerizet with a bow. 'I have come to
ask your intentions.'
" 'I shall only pay when the fancy takes me,' returned Maxime, and he
rang for Suzon. 'It was very rash of Claparon to buy up bills of mine
without speaking to me beforehand. I am sorry for him, for he did so
very well for such a long time as a man of straw for friends of mine.
|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 Firm of Nucingen by Honore de Balzac:
the signs of the Middle Ages, hence the modern prospectus. I do not
see a hair's-breadth of difference between attracting custom and
forcing your goods upon the consumer. It may happen, it is sure to
happen, it often happens, that a shopkeeper gets hold of damaged
goods, for the seller always cheats the buyer. Go and ask the most
upright folk in Paris--the best known men in business, that is--and
they will all triumphantly tell you of dodges by which they passed off
stock which they knew to be bad upon the public. The well-known firm
of Minard began by sales of this kind. In the Rue Saint-Denis they
sell nothing but 'greased silk'; it is all that they can do. The most
honest merchants tell you in the most candid way that 'you must get