a a. Prussian Infantry, b. Cavalry, c c. Artillery. d d. Austrian Army.
“Baireuth, October 15, 1757.George Ludwig, Count of Berg, who at this time was Bishop of Liege, was a feeble old man, tottering beneath the infirmities of eighty-two years. He did not venture upon physical resistance to the power of Prussia, but confined himself to protests, remonstrances, and to the continued exercise of his own governmental authority. As Herstal was many leagues distant from Berlin, was of comparatively little value, and could only be reached by traversing foreign states, Frederick William offered to sell all his claims to it for about eighty thousand dollars. The proposal not being either accepted or rejected by the bishop, the king, anxious to settle the question before his death, sent an embassador to Liege, with full powers to arrange the difficulty by treaty. For three days the embassador endeavored in vain to obtain an audience. He then returned indignantly to Berlin. The king, of course, regarded this treatment as an insult. The bishop subsequently averred that the audience was prevented by his own sickness. Such was the posture of affairs when Frederick William died.
“As a fit of illness has come on me, which I do not think will have dangerous results, I have, for the present, left the command of my troops to Lieutenant General Von Finck, whose orders you are to execute as if coming directly from myself. On this I pray God139 to have you in his holy and worthy keeping.
Ann Amelia.”72General Daun, with the utmost caution, followed the retreating army. Though his numbers were estimated at seventy-five thousand, he did not dare to encounter Frederick with his thirty thousand Prussians on the field of battle. With skill which has elicited the applause of all military critics, Frederick, early in August, continued his retreat till he reached, on the 8th of the month, Grüssau, on his own side of the mountains in Silesia. On this march he wrote to his brother Henry from Skalitz:
The king was by no means pleased with the costly luxuries with which his son was surrounding himself. But he had, in a very considerable degree, lost his control over the Crown Prince. Frederick was now twenty-one years of age. He had married the niece of the Emperor of Germany. The emperor had probably once saved his life, and was disposed particularly to befriend him, that he might secure his alliance when he should become King of Prussia. Frederick was now the rising sun, and his father the setting luminary. All the courts in Europe were interested in winning the regards of the Crown Prince.“Daily for five hours the universality of his conversation completed my enchantment at his powers. The arts, war, medicine, literature, religion, philosophy, morality, history, and legislation passed in review by turns. The great times of Augustus and Louis XIV.; the good society among the Romans, the Greeks, and the French; the chivalry of Francis I.; the valor of Henry IV.; the revival of letters, and their changes since Leo X.; anecdotes of men of talent of former days, and their errors; the eccentricities of Voltaire; the sensitive vanity of Maupertuis; the agreeableness of Algarotti; the wit of Jordan; the hypochondriacism of the Marquis D’Argens, whom the king used to induce to keep his bed for four-and-twenty hours by merely telling him he looked ill—and what not besides? All that could be said of the most varied and agreeable kind was what came from him, in a gentle tone of voice, rather low, and very agreeable from his manner of moving his lips, which possessed an inexpressible grace.”198
As soon as Hotham had left Berlin the Crown Prince held a secret midnight interview with Captain Dickens and Lieutenant Katte, to devise some new plan of escape during the journey to the Rhine, which was to commence in a few days. He made arrangements to leave all his private papers with Katte, provided himself with a large gray overcoat as a partial disguise, and, with much difficulty, obtained about a thousand ducats to defray his expenses. Lieutenant Keith was at Wesel. He was written to with the utmost secrecy, as he might be able to render efficient aid, could the Crown Prince reach him.
On the southeast frontier of Prussia, between that kingdom, and Poland, and Hungary, there was an Austrian realm called Silesia. The country embraced a territory of twenty thousand square miles, being about twice as large as the State of Vermont.215 The population was about two millions. For more than a century Silesia had been a portion of the Austrian kingdom. Time, and the assent of Europe, had sanctioned the title.“At last, about nine, somebody brought word that my brother had changed his route and gone to Culmbach, there to stay overnight. I was for setting out thither. Culmbach is twenty miles from Berneck. But the roads are frightful, and full of precipices. Every body rose in opposition. And whether I would or not they put me into the carriage for Himmelkron, which is only about ten miles off. We had like to have got drowned on the road, the waters were so swollen. The horses could not cross but by swimming.
The assault was as sudden and resistless as the sweep of the avalanche. The Austrian division was annihilated. Scarcely a man escaped. This achievement was deemed a very brilliant367 passage of war. It cut the Austrian army in twain and secured its ruin.“I have seen neither my brother48 nor Keyserling.49 I left them at Breslau, not to expose them to the dangers of war. They perhaps will be a little angry, but what can I do? the rather as, on this occasion, one can not share in the glory unless one is a mortar!Frederick’s Motives for the War.—Marriage of William Augustus.—Testimony of Lord Macaulay.—Frederick and his Allies.—Visit to Dresden.—Military Energy.—Charles Albert chosen Emperor.—The Coronation.—Effeminacy of the Saxon Princes.—Disappointment and Vexation of Frederick.—He withdraws in Chagrin.—The Cantonment on the Elbe.—Winter Campaigning.—The Concentration at Chrudim.
“Your true father to the death,“After which the Lord’s Prayer; then rapidly and vigorously wash himself clean; dress, and powder, and comb himself. While they are combing and queuing him, he is to breakfast on tea. Prayer, washing, breakfast, and the rest to be done pointedly within fifteen minutes.Sophie Dorothee seemed to have but one thought—the double marriage. This would make Wilhelmina queen of England, and would give her dear son Frederick an English princess for his bride. Her efforts, embarrassments, disappointments, were endless. Frederick William began to be regarded by the other powers as a very formidable man, whose alliance was exceedingly desirable. His army, of sixty thousand men, rapidly increasing, was as perfect in drill and discipline as ever existed. It was thoroughly furnished with all the appliances of war. The king himself, living in Spartan simplicity, and cutting down the expenses of his court to the lowest possible figure, was consecrating the resources of his realm to the promotion of its physical strength, and was accumulating iron-bound casks of gold and silver coin in the cellars of his palace. It became a matter of much moment to every court in Europe whether such a monarch should be its enemy or its ally.详情
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