类型:奇幻地区:mg3ͺ发布:2020-09-24 19:48:34


In June, 1730, Augustus, King of Poland, had one of the most magnificent military reviews of which history gives any record. The camp of Mühlberg, as it was called, was established upon an undulating field, twelve miles square, on the right bank of the Elbe, a few leagues below Dresden. It is hardly too much to say that all the beauty and chivalry of Europe were gathered upon that field. Fabulous amounts of money and of labor were expended to invest the scene with the utmost sublimity of splendor. A military review had great charms for Frederick William. He attended as one of the most distinguished of the invited guests. The Crown Prince accompanied the king, as his father dared not leave him behind. But Fritz was exposed to every mortification and every species of ignominy which the ingenuity of this monster parent could heap upon him.The slow fever, he wrote, which consumes me, has not thrown any disorder into my understanding. Condescend to listen to me, sire, now that I can not be suspected of any illusion or deceit. There is an end to the house of Prussia if you continue to brave all Europe confederated against you. You force all Europe to arm to repel your encroachments. The princes of Europe are leagued against your majesty by justice and by interest. Their subjects regard your ruin as essential to the re-establishment of peace and the safety of monarchical government. They read in your success the slavery of the human race, the annihilation of laws, the degradation of society.

On the 12th of June, but a fortnight after his accession, Frederick198 wrote from Charlottenburg to Voltaire, who was then at Brussels, as follows:Immediately after his return he wrote again: I am now a peaceable inhabitant of Reinsberg, applying myself to study and reading almost from morning till night. With regard to the news of this world, you will learn them better through the gazetteers than through me. They contain the history of the madness and folly of the great, the wars of some, the quarrels of others, and the childish amusements of all. These news are as little worthy the attention of a man of sense as the quarrels of rats and mice would be.25

As the king cast his eye over the blood-stained field, covered with the wounded and the dead, for a moment he seemed overcome with the aspect of misery, and exclaimed, When, oh when will my woes cease?

While on this tour of inspection, the celebrated French philosopher DAlembert, by appointment, met the king at Geldern, and accompanied him to Potsdam. DAlembert was in entire sympathy with the king in his renunciation of Christianity. In 1755 DAlembert had, by invitation, met Frederick at Wesel, on the Rhine. In a letter to Madame Du Deffand, at Paris, dated Potsdam, June 25, 1763, DAlembert wrote:The Austrians, on the careless and self-confident march toward Parchwitz, had crossed the Schweidnitz River, or Water, as it438 was called, when they learned that Frederick, with a tiger-like spring, had leaped upon Neumarkt, an important town fourteen miles from Parchwitz. Here the Austrians had a bakery, protected by a guard of a thousand men. Seven hundred of the guard were instantly sabred or taken prisoners. The rest fled wildly. Frederick gathered up eighty thousand hot bread rations, with which he feasted his hungry troops.

General Dauns army, numbering ninety thousand men, occupied very strong positions in a line extending north and south about five miles. On the 10th, Frederick, having obtained the needful supplies, resolutely, rashlybut, situated as he was, what the world deemed rashness was prudenceadvanced with but twenty-eight thousand men to assail this foe of ninety thousand behind his intrenchments. About five miles to the north, in the rear of the heights of Weissenberg, Frederick had a reserve of ten or twelve thousand men under General Retzow.

Sont pour jamais perdus dans les charrains.The prospects of Frederick were now gloomy. The bright morning of the campaign had darkened into a stormy day. The barren region around afforded no supplies. The inhabitants were all Catholics; they hated the heretics. Inspired by their priests, they fled from their dwellings, taking with them or destroying every thing which could aid the Prussian army. But most annoying of all, the bold, sagacious chieftain, General Bathyani, with hordes of Pandours which could not be countedhorsemen who seemed to have the vitality and endurance of centaurswas making deadly assaults upon every exposed point.

Thus influenced, she yielded. Tears flooded her eyes, and her voice was broken with sobs as she said, I am ready to sacrifice myself for the peace of the family. The deputation withdrew, leaving the princess in despair. Baron Grumkow conveyed to the king the pleasing intelligence of her submission.THE KINGS BIVOUAC.



The Prince of Ligne, a very accomplished courtier, about this566 time visited the sick and dying king. During his brief stay he dined daily with the king, and spent his evenings with him. In an interesting account which he gives of these interviews, he writes:I bequeath eight thousand crowns (00) to my domestics. All that I have elsewhere depends on you. To each of my brothers and sisters make a present in my name; a thousand affectionate regards to my sister at Baireuth. You know what I think on their score; and you know, better than I can tell you, the tenderness and all the sentiments of most inviolable friendship with which I am, dearest brother, your faithful brother and servant till death,

One of this smoking cabinet was a celebrated adventurer named Gundling, endowed with wonderful encyclopedian knowledge, and an incorrigible drunkard. He had been every where, seen every thing, and remembered all which he had either heard or seen. Frederick William had accidentally picked him up, and, taking a fancy to him, had clothed him, pensioned him, and introduced him to his Tabagie, where his peculiar character often made him the butt of ridicule. He was excessively vain, wore a scarlet coat, and all manner of pranks were cut up by these boon companions, in the midst of their cups, at his expense.



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