|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx:
individual members of this class, however, are being constantly
hurled down into the proletariat by the action of competition,
and, as modern industry develops, they even see the moment
approaching when they will completely disappear as an independent
section of modern society, to be replaced, in manufactures,
agriculture and commerce, by overlookers, bailiffs and shopmen.
In countries like France, where the peasants constitute far more
than half of the population, it was natural that writers who
sided with the proletariat against the bourgeoisie, should use,
in their criticism of the bourgeois regime, the standard of the
peasant and petty bourgeois, and from the standpoint of these
The Communist Manifesto
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Kenilworth by Walter Scott:
Sovereign, before whom all words must be lacquered over either
with gilding or with sugar, is such a confectionary matter as
clean baffles my poor old English brain.--Come with me, Tracy,
and come you too, Master Walter Wittypate, that art the cause of
our having all this ado. Let us see if thy neat brain, that
frames so many flashy fireworks, can help out a plain fellow at
need with some of thy shrewd devices."
"Never fear, never fear," exclaimed the youth, "it is I will help
you through; let me but fetch my cloak."
"Why, thou hast it on thy shoulders," said Blount,--"the lad is
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Travels of Sir John Mandeville by Sir John Mandeville:
isle as great as hounds here; and men take them with great
mastiffs, for cats may not take them. In this isle and many other
men bury not no dead men, for the heat is there so great, that in a
little time the flesh will consume from the bones.
From thence men go by sea toward Ind the more to a city, that men
clepe Sarche, that is a fair city and a good. And there dwell many
Christian men of good faith. And there be many religious men, and
namely of mendicants.
After go men by sea to the land of Lomb. In that land groweth the
pepper in the forest that men clepe Combar. And it groweth nowhere
else in all the world, but in that forest, and that endureth well
|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 Maid Marian by Thomas Love Peacock:
Robin broached another flask; and Marian filled the baron's cup,
and sweetened Robin's by touching its edge with her lips.
"Well," said the baron, "give me a roof over my head, be it never so humble.
Your greenwood canopy is pretty and pleasant in sunshine; but if I were doomed
to live under it, I should wish it were water-tight."
"But," said Robin, "we have tents and caves for foul weather,
good store of wine and venison, and fuel in abundance."
"Ay, but," said the baron, "I like to pull off my boots of a night, which you
foresters seldom do, and to ensconce myself thereafter in a comfortable bed.
Your beech-root is over-hard for a couch, and your mossy stump is somewhat
rough for a bolster."