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Today's Stichomancy for Robert Redford

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Montezuma's Daughter by H. Rider Haggard:

violator, it is another matter. Well now, do you accept?'

'I accept.'

'Good. Your baggage I suppose is at the inn. I will send porters to discharge your score and bring it here. No need for you to go, nephew, let us stop and drink another glass of wine; the sooner we grow intimate the better, nephew.'

It was thus that first I became acquainted with Senor Andres de Fonseca, my benefactor, the strangest man whom I have ever known. Doubtless any person reading this history would think that I, the narrator, was sowing a plentiful crop of troubles for myself in having to deal with him, setting him down as a rogue of the


Montezuma's Daughter
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Divine Comedy (translated by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow) by Dante Alighieri:

Both to the Yes and No thou seest not;

For very low among the fools is he Who affirms without distinction, or denies, As well in one as in the other case;

Because it happens that full often bends Current opinion in the false direction, And then the feelings bind the intellect.

Far more than uselessly he leaves the shore, (Since he returneth not the same he went,) Who fishes for the truth, and has no skill;

And in the world proofs manifest thereof


The Divine Comedy (translated by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow)
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Lair of the White Worm by Bram Stoker:

Lady Arabella's dress. She came close and waited, with her face to the iron door. From some place of concealment near at hand Oolanga appeared, and came close to her. Adam noticed, with surprised amusement, that over his shoulder was the box with the mongoose. Of course the African did not know that he was seen by anyone, least of all by the man whose property he had with him.

Silent-footed as he was, Lady Arabella heard him coming, and turned to meet him. It was somewhat hard to see in the gloom, for, as usual, he was all in black, only his collar and cuffs showing white. Lady Arabella opened the conversation which ensued between the two.

"What do you want? To rob me, or murder me?"


Lair of the White Worm
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 Hiero by Xenophon:

taste. At any rate, the custom holds[4] in many states "to slay the adulterer" alone of all "with impunity,"[5] for this reason clearly that such miscreants are held to be destroyers of that friendship[6] which binds the woman to the husband. Since where by some untoward chance a woman suffers violation of her chastity,[7] husbands do not the less honour them, as far as that goes, provided true affection still appear unsullied.[8]

[4] Lit. "many of the states have a law and custom to," etc. Cf. "Pol. Lac." ii. 4.

[5] Cf. Plat. "Laws," 874 C, "if a man find his wife suffering violence he may kill the violator and be guiltless in the eye of