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Title: History of Friedrich II of Prussia — Volume 15
Author: Carlyle, Thomas, 1795-1881
Language: English
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HISTORY OF FRIEDRICH II. OF PRUSSIA

FREDERICK THE GREAT

By Thomas Carlyle



BOOK XV.--SECOND SILESIAN WAR, IMPORTANT EPISODE IN THE GENERAL EUROPEAN
ONE.--15th Aug. 1744-25th Dec. 1745.



Chapter I.--PRELIMINARY: HOW THE MOMENT ARRIVED.

Battle being once seen to be inevitable, it was Friedrich's plan not to
wait for it, but to give it. Thanks to Friedrich Wilhelm and himself,
there is no Army, nor ever was any, in such continual preparation.
Military people say, "Some Countries take six months, some twelve, to
get in motion for war: but in three weeks Prussia can be across
the marches, and upon the throat of its enemy." Which is an immense
advantage to little Prussia among its big neighbors. "Some Countries
have a longer sword than Prussia; but none can unsheathe it so
soon:"--we hope, too, it is moderately sharp, when wielded by a deft
hand.

The French, as was intimated, are in great vigor, this Year; thoroughly
provoked; and especially since Friedrich sent his Rothenburg among
them, have been doing their very utmost. Their main effort is in the
Netherlands, at present;--and indeed, as happened, continues all
through this War to be. They by no means intend, or ever did, to neglect
Teutschland; yet it turns out, they have pretty much done with their
fighting there. And next Year, driven or led by accidents of various
kinds, they quit it altogether; and turning their whole strength upon
the Netherlands and Italy, chiefly on the Netherlands, leave Friedrich,
much to his astonishment, with the German War hanging wholly round
HIS neck, and take no charge of it farther! In which, to Friedrich's
Biographers, there is this inestimable benefit, if far the reverse to
Friedrich's self: That we shall soon have done with the French, then;
with them and with so much else; and may, in time coming, for most part,
leave their huge Sorcerer's Sabbath of a European War to dance
itself out, well in the distance, not encumbering us farther, like a
circumambient Bedlam, as it has hitherto done. Courage, reader! Let us
give, in a glance or two, some notion of the course things took, and
what moment it was when Friedrich struck in;--whom alone, or almost
alone, we hope to follow thenceforth; "Dismal Swamp" (so gracious was
Heaven to us) lying now mostly to rearward, little as we hoped it!

It was mere accident, a series of bad accidents, that led King Louis and
his Ministers into gradually forsaking Friedrich. They were the
farthest in the world from intending such a thing. Contrariwise, what
brain-beating, diplomatic spider-weaving, practical contriving, now
and afterwards, for that object; especially now! Rothenburg, Noailles,
Belleisle, Cardinal Tencin, have been busy; not less the mistress
Chateauroux, who admires Friedrich, being indeed a high-minded
unfortunate female, as they say; and has thrown out Amelot, not
for stammering alone. They are able, almost high people, this new
Chateauroux Ministry, compared with some; and already show results.

Nay, what is most important of all, France has (unconsciously, or by
mere help of Noailles and luck) got a real General to her Armies: Comte
de Saxe, now Marechal de Saxe; who will shine very splendent in these
Netherland operations,--counter-shone by mere Wades, D'Ahrembergs,
Cumberlands,--in this and the Four following Years. Noailles had
always recognized Comte de Saxe; had long striven for him, in Official
quarters; and here gets the light of him unveiled at last, and set on a
high place: loyal Noailles.

This was the Year, this 1744, when Louis XV., urged by his Chateauroux,
the high-souled unfortunate female, appeared in person at the head
of his troops: "Go, Sire, go, MON CHOU (and I will accompany); show
yourself where a King should be, at the head of your troops; be a second
Louis-le-Grand!" Which he did, his Chateauroux and he; actually went to
the Netherlands, with baggage-train immeasurable, including not cooks
only, but play-actors with their thunder-barrels (off from Paris, May
3d), to the admiration of the Universe. [Adelung, iv. 113; Barbier,
ii. 391, 394; Dulaure, _Hist. de Paris;_ &c.] Took the command,
nominal-command, first days of June; and captured in no-time Menin,
Ipres, Furnes, and the Fort of Knock, and as much of the Austrian
Netherlands as he liked,--that is to say, saw Noailles and Saxe do
it;--walking rapidly forward from Siege to Siege, with a most thundering
artillery; old Marshal Wade and consorts dismally eating their victuals,
and looking on from the distance, unable to attempt the least stroke in
opposition. So that the Dutch Barrier, if anybody now cared for it,
did go all flat; and the Balance of Power gets kicked out of its sacred
pivot: to such purpose have the Dutch been hoisted! Terrible to think
of;--had not there, from the opposite quarter, risen a surprising
counterpoise; had not there been a Prince Karl, with his 70,000,
pressing victoriously over the Rhine; which stayed the French in these
sacrilegious procedures.



PRINCE KARL GETS ACROSS THE RHINE (20 JUNE-2 JULY, 1744).

Prince Karl, some weeks ago, at Heilbronn, joined his Rhine Army, which
had gathered thither from the Austrian side, through Baiern, and from
the Hither-Austrian or Swabian Winter-quarters; with full intent to be
across the Rhine, and home upon Elsass and the Compensation Countries,
this Summer, under what difficulties soever. Karl, or, as some whisper,
old Marshal Traun, who is nominally second in command, do make a
glorious campaign of it, this Year;--and lift the Cause of Liberty, at
one time, to the highest pitch it ever reached. Here, in brief terms, is
Prince Karl's Operation on the Rhine, much admired by military men:--

"STOCKSTADT, JUNE 20th, 1744. Some thirty and odd miles north of
Mannheim, the Rhine, before turning westward at Mainz, makes one other
of its many Islands (of which there are hundreds since the leap at
Schaffhausen): one other, and I think the biggest of them all; perhaps
two miles by five; which the Germans call KUHKOPF (Cowhead), from the
shape it has,--a narrow semi-ellipse; River there splitting in two, one
split (the western) going straight, the other bending luxuriantly round:
so that the HIND-head or straight end of the Island lies towards France,
and the round end, or cow-LIPS (so to speak) towards native Teutschland,
and the woody Hills of the Berg-Strasse thereabouts. Stockstadt, chief
little Town looking over into this Cowhead Island, lies under the
CHIN: understand only farther that the German branch carries more than
two-thirds of the River; that on the Island itself there is no town,
or post of defence; and that Stockstadt is the place for getting over.
Coigny and the French, some 40,000, are guarding the River hereabouts,
with lines, with batteries, cordons, the best they can; Seckendorf, with
20,000 more ('Imperial' Old Bavarian Troops, revivified, recruited
by French pay), is in his garrison of Philipsburg, ready to help when
needed:"--not moulting now, at Wembdingen, in that dismal manner;
new-feathered now into "Kaiser's Army;" waiting in his Philipsburg to
guard the River there. "Coigny's French have ramparts, ditches, not
quite unfurnished, on their own shore, opposite this Cowhead Island
(ISLE DE HERON, as they call it); looking over to the hind-head, namely:
but they have nothing considerable there; and in the Island itself,
nothing whatever. 'If now Stockstadt were suddenly snatched by us,'
thinks Karl;--'if a few pontoons were nimbly swung in?'

"JUNE 20th,--Coigny's people all shooting FEU-DE-JOIE, for that never
enough to be celebrated Capture of Menin and the Dutch Barrier
a fortnight ago,--this is managed to be done. The active General
Barenklau, active Brigadier Daun under him, pushes rapidly across into
Kuhkopf; rapidly throws up intrenchments, ramparts, mounts cannon, digs
himself in,--greatly to Coigny's astonishment; whose people hereabouts,
and in all their lines and posts, are busy shooting FEU-DE-JOIE for
those immortal Dutch victories, at the moment, and never dreaming of
such a thing. Fresh force floods in, Prince Karl himself arrives next
day, in support of Barenklau; Coigny (head-quarters at Speyer, forty
miles south) need not attempt dislodging him; but must stand upon his
guard, and prepare for worse. Which he does with diligence; shifting
northward into those Stockstadt-Mainz parts; calling Seckendorf across
the River, and otherwise doing his best,--for about ten days more, when
worse, and almost worst, did verily befall him.

"No attempt was made on Barenklau; nor, beyond the alarming of the
Coigny-Seckendorf people, did anything occur in Cowhead Island,--unless
it were the finis of an ugly bully and ruffian, who has more than once
afflicted us: which may be worth one word. Colonel Mentzel [copper-faced
Colonel, originally Play-actor, "Spy in Persia," and I know not what]
had been at the seizure of Kuhkopf; a prominent man. Whom, on the fifth
day after ('June 25th'), Prince Karl overwhelmed with joy, by handing
him a Patent of Generalcy: 'Just received from Court, my Friend,
on account of your merits old and late.'--'Aha,' said Barenklau,
congratulating warmly: 'Dine with me, then, Herr General Mentzel,
this very day. The Prince himself is to be there, Highness of
Hessen-Darmstadt, and who not; all are impatient to drink your health!'
Mentzel had a glorious dinner; still more glorious drink,--Prince
Karl and the others, it is said, egging him into much wild bluster and
gasconade, to season their much wine. Eminent swill of drinking, with
the loud coarse talk supposable, on the part of Mentzel and consorts did
go on, in this manner, all afternoon: in the evening, drunk Mentzel came
out for air; went strutting and staggering about; emerging finally on
the platform of some rampart, face of him huge and red as that of
the foggiest rising Moon;--and stood, looking over into the Lorraine
Country; belching out a storm of oaths, as to his taking it, as to
his doing this and that; and was even flourishing his sword by way of
accompaniment; when, lo, whistling slightly through the summer air, a
rifle-ball from some sentry on the French side (writers say, it was a
French drummer, grown impatient, and snatching a sentry's piece) took
the brain of him, or the belly of him; and he rushed down at once, a
totally collapsed monster, and mere heap of dead ruin, never to trouble
mankind more." [_Guerre de Boheme,_ iii. 165.] For which my readers and
I are rather thankful. Voltaire, and perhaps other memorable persons,
sometimes mention this brute (miraculous to the Plebs and Gazetteers);
otherwise eternal oblivion were the best we could do with him. Trenck
also, readers will be glad to understand, ends in jail and bedlam by and
by.

"Prince Karl had not the least intention of crossing by this Cowhead
Island. Nevertheless he set about two other Bridges in the neighborhood,
nearer Mainz (few miles below that City); kept manoeuvring his Force,
in huge half-moon, round that quarter, and mysteriously up and down;
alarming Coigny wholly into the Mainz region. For the space of ten
days; and then, stealing off to Schrock, a little Rhine Village above
Philipsburg, many miles away from Coigny and his vigilantes, he--

"NIGHT OF 30th JUNE-1st JULY, Suddenly shot Pandour Trenck, followed
by Nadasti and 6,000, across at Schrock who scattered Seckendorf's poor
outposts thereabouts to the winds; 'built a bridge before morning, and
next day another.' Next day Prince Karl in person appeared; and on the
3d of July, had his whole Army with its luggages across; and had seized
the Lines of Lauterburg and Weissenburg (celebrated northern defence of
Elsass),--much to Coigny's amazement; and remained inexpugnable there,
with Elsass open to him, and to Coigny shut, for the present! [Adelung,
iv. 139-141.] Coigny made bitter wail, accusation, blame of Seckendorf,
blame of men and of things; even tried some fighting, Seckendorf too
doing feats, to recover those Lines of Weissenburg: but could not do it.
And, in fact, blazing to and fro in that excited rather than luminous
condition, could not do anything; except retire into the strong posts
of the background; and send express on express, swifter than the wind if
you can, to a victorious King overturning the Dutch Barrier: 'Help, your
Majesty, or we are lost; and France is--what shall I say!'"

"Admirable feat of Strategy! What a General, this Prince Karl!"
exclaimed mankind,--Cause-of-Liberty mankind with special enthusiasm;
and took to writing LIVES of Prince Karl, [For instance, _The Life of
his Highness Prince Charles of &c., with &c. &c._ (London, 1746); one
of the most distracted Blotches ever published under the name of
Book;--wakening thoughts of a public dimness very considerable indeed,
to which this could offer itself as lamp!] as well as tar-burning and
TE-DEUM-ing on an extensive scale. For it had sent the Cause of Liberty
bounding up again to the top of things, this of crossing the Rhine,
in such fashion. And, in effect, the Cause of Liberty, and Prince
Karl himself, had risen hereby to their acme or culminating point in
World-History; not to continue long at such height, little as they
dreamt of that, among their tar-burnings. The feat itself--contrived
by Nadasti, people say, and executed (what was the real difficulty) by
Traun--brought Prince Karl very great renown, this Year; and is praised
by Friedrich himself, now and afterwards, as masterly, as Julius
Caesar's method, and the proper way of crossing rivers (when executable)
in face of an enemy. And indeed Prince Karl, owing to Traun or not,
is highly respectable in the way of Generalship at present; and did in
these Five Months, from June onward, really considerable things. At his
very acme of Life, as well as of Generalship; which, alas, soon changed,
poor man; never to culminate again. He had got, at the beginning of the
Year, the high Maria Theresa's one Sister, Archduchess Maria Anna, to
Wife; [Age then twenty-five gone: "born 14th September, 1718; married to
Prince Karl 7th January, 1744; died, of childbirth, 16th December same
year" (Hormayr, _OEsterreichischer Plutarch,_ iv. erstes Baudchen, 54).]
the crown of long mutual attachment; she safe now at Brussels,
diligent Co-Regent, and in a promising family-way; he here walking on
victorious:--need any man be happier? No man can be supremely happy
long; and this General's strategic felicity and his domestic were
fatally cut down almost together. The Cause of Liberty, too, now at the
top of its orbit, was--But let us stick by our Excerpting:

"DUNKIRK, 19th JULY, 1744 [Princess Ulrique's Wedding, just two days
ago]. King Louis, on hearing of the Job's-news from Elsass, instantly
suspended his Conquests in Flanders; detached Noailles, detached this
one and that, double-quick, Division after Division (leaving Saxe, with
45,000, to his own resources, and the fatuities of Marshal Wade);
and, 19th July, himself hastens off from Dunkirk (leaving much of the
luggage, but not the Chateauroux behind him), to save his Country, poor
soul. But could not, in the least, save it; the reverse rather. August
4th, he got to Metz, Belleisle's strong town, about 100 miles from the
actual scene; his detached reinforcements, say 50,000 men or so, hanging
out ahead like flame-clouds, but uncertain how to act;--Noailles being
always cunctatious in time of crisis, and poor Louis himself nothing of
a Cloud-Compeller;--and then,

"METZ, AUGUST 8th, The Most Christian King fell ill; dangerously,
dreadfully, just like to die. Which entirely paralyzed Noailles and
Company, or reduced them to mere hysterics, and excitement of the
unluminous kind. And filled France in general, Paris in particular,
with terror, lamentation, prayers of forty hours; and such a paroxysm
of hero-worship as was never seen for such an object before." [Espagnac,
ii. 12; Adelung, iv. 180; _Fastes de Louis XV.,_ ii. 423; &c. &c.]

For the Cause of Liberty here, we consider, was the culminating moment;
Elsass, Lorraine and the Three Bishoprics lying in their quasi-moribund
condition; Austrian claims of Compensation ceasing to be visions of the
heated brain, and gaining some footing on the Earth as facts. Prince
Karl is here actually in Elsass, master of the strong passes; elate in
heart, he and his; France, again, as if fallen paralytic, into temporary
distraction; offering for resistance nothing hitherto but that universal
wailing of mankind, Hero-worship of a thrice-lamentable nature, and the
Prayers of Forty-Hours! Most Christian Majesty, now IN EXTREMIS, centre
of the basest hubbub that ever was, is dismissing Chateauroux. Noailles,
Coigny and Company hang well back upon the Hill regions, and strong
posts which are not yet menaced; or fly vaguely, more or less
distractedly, hither and thither; not in the least like fighting Karl,
much less like beating him. Karl has Germany free at his back (nay it is
a German population round him here); neither haversack nor cartridge-box
like to fail: before him are only a Noailles and consorts, flying
vaguely about;--and there is in Karl, or under the same cloak with him
at present, a talent of manoeuvring men, which even Friedrich finds
masterly. If old Marshal Wade, at the other end of the line, should
chance to awaken and press home on Saxe, and his remnant of French, with
right vigor? In fact, there was not, that I can see, for centuries past,
not even at the Siege of Lille in Marlborough's time, a more imminent
peril for France.



FRIEDRICH DECIDES TO INTERVENE.

King Friedrich, on hearing of these Rhenish emergencies and of King
Louis's heroic advance to the rescue, perceived that for himself too the
moment was come; and hastened to inform heroic Louis, That though the
terms of their Bargain were not yet completed, Sweden, Russia and other
points being still in a pendent condition, he, Friedrich,--with an eye
to success of their Joint Adventure, and to the indispensability of
joint action, energy, and the top of one's speed now or never,--would,
by the middle of this same August, be on the field with 100,000 men. "An
invasion of Bohemia, will not that astonish Prince Karl; and bring him
to his Rhine-Bridges again? Over which, if your Most Christian Majesty
be active, he will not get, except in a half, or wholly ruined state.
Follow him close; send the rest of your force to threaten Hanover; sit
well on the skirts of Prince Karl. Him as he hurries homeward, ruined or
half-ruined, him, or whatever Austrian will fight, I do my best to beat.
We may have Bohemia, and a beaten Austria, this very Autumn: see,--and,
in one Campaign, there is Peace ready for us!" This is Friedrich's
scheme of action; success certain, thinks he, if only there be energy,
activity, on your side, as there shall be on mine;--and has sent Count
Schmettau, filled with fiery speed and determination, to keep the French
full of the like, and concert mutual operations.

"Magnanimous!" exclaim Noailles and the paralyzed French Gentlemen (King
Louis, I think, now past speech, for Schmettau only came August 9th):
"Most sublime behavior, on his Prussian Majesty's part!" own they. And
truly it is a fine manful indifference (by no means so common as it
should be) to all interests, to all considerations, but that of a Joint
Enterprise one has engaged in. And truly, furthermore, it was immediate
salvation to the paralyzed French Gentlemen, in that alarming crisis;
though they did not much recognize it afterwards as such: and indeed
were conspicuously forgetful of all parts of it, when their own danger
was over.

Maria Theresa's feelings may be conceived; George II's feelings; and
what the Cause of Liberty in general felt, and furiously said and
complained, when--suddenly as a DEUS EX MACHINA, or Supernal Genie
in the Minor Theatres--Friedrich stept in. Precisely in this supreme
crisis, 7th August, 1744, Friedrich's Minister, Graf von Dohna, at
Vienna, has given notice of the Frankfurt Union, and solemn Engagement
entered into: "Obliged in honor and conscience; will and must now step
forth to right an injured Kaiser; cannot stand these high procedures
against an Imperial Majesty chosen by all the Princes of the Reich, this
unheard-of protest that the Kaiser is no Kaiser, as if all Germany were
but Austria and the Queen of Hungary's. Prussian Majesty has not the
least quarrel of his own with the Queen of Hungary, stands true, and
will stand, by the Treaty of Berlin and Breslau;--only, with certain
other German Princes, has done what all German Princes and peoples not
Austrian are bound to do, on behalf of their down-trodden Kaiser,
formed a Union of Frankfurt; and will, with armed hand if indispensable,
endeavor to see right done in that matter." [In _Adelung,_ iv. 155, 156,
the Declaration itself (Audience, "7th August, 1744." Dohna off homeward
"on the second day after").]

This is the astonishing fact for the Cause of Liberty; and no clamor and
execration will avail anything. This man is prompt, too; does not
linger in getting out his Sword, when he has talked of it. Prince
Karl's Operation is likely to be marred amazingly. If this swift King
(comparable to the old Serpent for devices) were to burst forth from
his Silesian strengths; tread sharply on the TAIL of Prince Karl's
Operation, and bring back the formidably fanged head of IT out of
Alsace, five hundred miles all at once,--there would be a business!

We will now quit the Rhine Operations, which indeed are not now of
moment; Friedrich being suddenly the key of events again. I add only,
what readers are vaguely aware of, that King Louis did not die; that he
lay at death's door for precisely one week (8th-15th August), symptoms
mending on the 15th. In the interim,--Grand-Almoner Fitz-James (Uncle
of our Conte di Spinelli) insisting that a certain Cardinal, who had got
the Sacraments in hand, should insist; and endless ministerial intrigue
being busy,--moribund Louis had, when it came to the Sacramental
point, been obliged to dismiss his Chateauroux. Poor Chateauroux; an
unfortunate female; yet, one almost thinks, the best man among them:
dismissed at Metz here, and like to be mobbed! That was the one issue
of King Louis's death-sickness. Sublime sickness; during which all Paris
wept aloud, in terror and sorrow, like a child that has lost its mother
and sees a mastiff coming; wept sublimely, and did the Prayers
of Forty-Hours; and called King Louis Le BIEN-AIME (The
Well-beloved):--merely some obstruction in the royal bowels, it turned
out;--a good cathartic, and the Prayers of Forty-Hours, quite reinstated
matters. Nay reinstated even Chateauroux, some time after,--"the Devil
being well again," and, as the Proverb says, quitting his monastic view.
Reinstated Chateauroux: but this time, poor creature, she continued only
about a day:--"Sudden fever, from excitement," said the Doctors: "Fever?
Poison, you mean!" whispered others, and looked for changes in the
Ministry. Enough, oh, enough!--

Old Marshal Wade did not awaken, though bawled to by his Ligoniers and
others, and much shaken about, poor old gentleman. "No artillery to
speak of," murmured he; "want baggage-wagons, too!" and lay still. "Here
is artillery!" answered the Official people; "With my own money I will
buy you baggage-wagons!" answered the high Maria Anna, in her own name
and her Prince Karl's, who are Joint-Governors there. Possibly he would
have awakened, had they given him time. But time, in War especially, is
the thing that is never given. Once Friedrich HAD struck in, the moment
was gone by. Poor old Wade! Of him also enough.



Chapter II.--FRIEDRICH MARCHES UPON PRAG, CAPTURES PRAG.

It was on Saturday, "early in the morning," 15th August, 1744, that
Friedrich set out, attended by his two eldest Brothers, Prince of
Prussia and Prince Henri, from Potsdam, towards this new Adventure,
which proved so famous since. Sudden, swift, to the world's
astonishment;--actually on march here, in three Columns (two through
Saxony by various routes southeastward, one from Silesia through Glatz
southwestward), to invade Bohemia: rumor says 100,000 strong, fact
itself says upwards of 80,000, on their various routes, converging
towards Prag. [--Helden-Geschichte,--ii. 1165. Orlich (ii. 25, 27)
enumerates the various regiments.] His Columns, especially his Saxon
Columns, are already on the road; he joins one Column, this night,
at Wittenberg; and is bent, through Saxony, towards the frontiers of
Bohemia, at the utmost military speed he has.

Through Saxony about 60,000 go: he has got the Kaiser's Order to the
Government of Saxony, "Our august Ally, requiring on our Imperial
business a transit through you;"--and Winterfeld, an excellent soldier
and negotiator, has gone forward to present said Order. A Document which
flurries the Dresden Officials beyond measure. Their King is in Warsaw;
their King, if here, could do little; and indeed has been inclining
to Maria Theresa this long while. And Winterfeld insists on such
despatch;--and not even the Duke of Weissenfels is in Town, Dresden
Officials "send off five couriers and thirteen estafettes" to the poor
old Duke; [_Helden-Geschichte,_ ii. 1163.] get him at last; and--The
march is already taking effect; they may as well consent to it: what can
they do but consent! In the uttermost flurry, they had set to fortifying
Dresden; all hands driving palisades, picking, delving, making COUPURES
(trenches, or sunk barricades) in the streets;--fatally aware that it
can avail nothing. Is not this the Kaiser's Order? Prussians, to the
amount of 60,000, are across our Frontiers, rapidly speeding on.

"Friedrich's Manifesto--under the modest Title, 'ANZEIGE DER URSACHEN
(Advertisement of the Causes which have induced his Prussian Majesty to
send the Romish Kaiser's Majesty some Auxiliary Troops)'--had appeared
in the Berlin Newspapers Thursday, 13th, only two days before. An
astonishment to all mankind; which gave rise to endless misconceptions
of Friedrich: but which, supporting itself on proofs, on punctually
excerpted foot-notes, is intrinsically a modest, quiet Piece; and, what
is singular in Manifestoes, has nothing, or almost nothing, in it that
is not, so far as it goes, a perfect statement of the fact. 'Auxiliary
troops, that is our essential character. No war with her Hungarian
Majesty, or with any other, on our own score. But her Hungarian Majesty,
how has she treated the Romish Kaiser, her and our and the Reich's
Sovereign Head, and to what pass reduced him; refusing him Peace on any
terms, except those of self-annihilation; denying that he is a Kaiser at
all;'--and enumerates the various Imperial injuries, with proof given,
quiet footnotes by way of proof; and concludes in these words: 'For
himself his Majesty requires nothing. The question here is not of his
Majesty's own interest at all [everything his Majesty required, or
requires, is by the Treaty of Berlin solemnly his, if the Reich and its
Laws endure]: and he has taken up arms simply and solely in the view of
restoring to the Reich its freedom, to the Kaiser his Headship of the
Reich, and to all Europe the Peace which is so desirable.' [Given in
Seyfarth, _Beylage,_ i. 121-136, with date "August, 1744."]

"'Pretences, subterfuges, lies!' exclaimed the Austrian and Allied
Public everywhere, or strove to exclaim; especially the English Public,
which had no difficulty in so doing;--a Public comfortably blank as to
German facts or non-facts; and finding with amazement only this a very
certain fact, That hereby is their own Pragmatic thunder checked in
mid-volley in a most surprising manner, and the triumphant Cause of
Liberty brought to jeopardy again. 'Perfidious, ambitious, capricious!'
exclaimed they: 'a Prince without honor, without truth, without
constancy;'--and completed, for themselves, in hot rabid humor, that
English Theory of Friedrich which has prevailed ever since. Perhaps the
most surprising item of which is this latter, very prominent in
those old times, That Friedrich has no 'constancy,' but follows his
'caprices,' and accidental whirls of impulse:--item which has dropped
away in our times, though the others stand as stable as ever. A monument
of several things! Friedrich's suddenness is an essential part of what
fighting talent he has: if the Public, thrown into flurry, cannot judge
it well, they must even misjudge it: what help is there?

"That the above were actually Friedrich's reasons for venturing into
this Big Game again, is not now disputable. And as to the rumor, which
rose afterwards (and was denied, and could only be denied diplomatically
to the ear, if even to the ear), That Friedrich by Secret Article was
'to have for himself the Three Bohemian Circles, Konigsgratz,
Bunzlau, Leitmeritz, which lie between Schlesien and Sachsen,'
[_Helden-Geschichte,_ i. 1081; Scholl, ii. 349.]--there is not a doubt
but Friedrich had so bargained, 'Very well, if we can get said Circles!'
and would right cheerfully have kept and held them, had the big game
gone in all points completely well (game, to reinstate the Kaiser BOTH
in Bohemia and Bavaria) by Friedrich's fine playing. Not a doubt of all
this:--nor of what an extremely hypothetic outlook it then and always
was; greatly too weak for enticing such a man."

Friedrich goes in Three Columns. One, on the south or left shore of the
Elbe, coming in various branches under Friedrich himself; this alone
will touch on Dresden, pass on the south side of Dresden; gather itself
about Pirna (in the Saxon Switzerland so called, a notable locality);
thence over the Metal Mountains into Bohmen, by Toplitz, by Lowositz,
Leitmeritz, and the Highway called the Pascopol, famous in War. The
Second Column, under Leopold the Young Dessauer, goes on the other or
north side of the Elbe, at a fair distance; marching through the Lausitz
(rendezvous or starting-point was Bautzen in the Lausitz) straight
south, to meet the King at Leitmeritz, where the grand Magazine is to
be; and thence, still south, straight upon Prag, in conjunction with his
Majesty or parallel to him. [_Helden-Geschichte,_ i. 1081.] These are
the Two Saxon Columns. The Third Column, under Schwerin, collects itself
in the interior of Silesia; is issuing, by Glatz Country, through the
Giant Mountains, BOHMISCHE KAMME (Bohemian COMBS as they are called,
which Tourists know), by the Pass of Braunau,--disturbing the dreams of
Rubezahl, if Rubezahl happen to be there. This, say 20,000, will come
down upon Prag from the eastern side; and be first on the ground (31st
August),--first by one day. In the home parts of Silesia, well eastward
of Glatz, there is left another Force of 20,000, which can go across the
Austrian Border there, and hang upon the Hills, threatening Olmutz and
the Moravian Countries, should need be.

And so, in its Three Columns, from west, from north, from east, the
march, with a steady swiftness, proceeds. Important especially those
Two Saxon Columns from west and north: 60,000 of them, "with a frightful
(ENTSETZLICH) quantity of big guns coming up the Elbe." Much is coming
up the Elbe; indispensable Highway for this Enterprise. Three months'
provisions, endless artillery and provender, is on the Elbe; 480 big
boats, with immense VORSPANN (of trace-horses, dreadful swearing, too,
as I have heard), will pass through the middle of Dresden: not landing
by any means. "No, be assured of it, ye Dresdeners, all flurried,
palisaded, barricaded; no hair of you shall be harmed." After a day or
two, the flurry of Saxony subsided; Prussians, under strict discipline,
molest no private person; pay their way; keep well aloof, to south and
to north, of Dresden (all but the necessary ammunition-escorts do);--and
require of the Official people nothing but what the Law of the
Reich authorizes to "Imperial Auxiliaries" in such case. "The Saxons
themselves," Friedrich observes, "had some 40,000, but scattered
about; King in Warsaw:--dreadful terror; making COUPURES and
TETES-DE-PONT;--could have made no defence." Had we diligently spent
eight days on them! reflects he afterwards. "To seize Saxony [and hobble
it with ropes, so that at any time you could pin it motionless, and
even, if need were, milk the substance out of it], would not have
detained us eight days." [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 53.] Which would
have been the true plan, had we known what was getting ready there!
Certain it is, Friedrich did no mischief, paid for everything; anxious
to keep well with Saxony; hoping always they might join him again,
in such a Cause. "Cause dear to every Patriot German Prince," urges
Friedrich,--though Bruhl, and the Polish, once "Moravian," Majesty are
of a very different opinion:--

"Maria Theresa, her thoughts at hearing of it may be imagined: 'The Evil
Genius of my House afoot again! My high projects on Elsass and Lorraine;
Husband for Kaiser, Elsass for the Reich and him, Lorraine for myself
and him; gone probably to water!' Nevertheless she said (an Official
person heard her say), 'My right is known to God; God will protect me,
as He has already done.' [ _Helden-Geschichte,_ ii. 1024.] And rose very
strong, and magnanimously defiant again; perhaps, at the bottom of her
heart, almost glad withal that she would now have a stroke for her
dear Silesia again, unhindered by Paladin George and his Treaties
and notions. What measures, against this nefarious Prussian outbreak,
hateful to gods and men, are possible, she rapidly takes: in Bohemia,
in Bavaria and her other Countries, that are threatened or can help. And
abates nothing of heart or hope;--praying withal, immensely, she and
her People, according to the mode they have. Sending for Prince Karl, we
need not say, double-quick, as the very first thing.

"Of Maria Theresa in Hungary,--for she ran to Presburg again with her
woes (August 16th, Diet just assembling there),--let us say only that
Hungary was again chivalrous; that old Palfy and the general Hungarian
Nation answered in the old tone,--VIVAT MARIA; AD ARMA, AD ARMA! with
Tolpatches, Pandours, Warasdins;--and, in short, that great and small,
in infinite 'Insurrection,' have still a stroke of battle in them
PRO REGE NOSTRO. Scarcely above a District or two (as the JASZERS and
KAUERS, in their over-cautious way) making the least difficulty. Much
enthusiasm and unanimity in all the others; here and there a Hungarian
gentleman complaining scornfully that their troops, known as among
the best fighters in Nature, are called irregular troops,--irregular,
forsooth! In one public consultation [District not important, not very
spellable, though doubtless pronounceable by natives to it], a gentleman
suggests that 'Winter is near; should not there be some slight provision
of tents, of shelter in the frozen sleety Mountains, to our gallant
fellows bound thither?' Upon which another starts up, 'When our
Ancestors came out of Asia Minor, over the Palus Maeotis bound in winter
ice; and, sabre in hand, cut their way into this fine Country which
is still ours, what shelter had they? No talk of tents, of barracks or
accommodation there; each, wrapt in his sheep skin, found it shelter
sufficient. Tents!' [ _Helden-Geschichte,_  ii. 1030.] And the thing was
carried by acclamation.

"Wide wail in Bohemia that War is coming back. Nobility all making off,
some to Vienna or the intermediate Towns lying thitherward, some to
their Country-seats; all out of Prag. Willing mind on the part of the
Common People; which the Government strains every nerve to make the most
of. Here are fasts, processions, Prayers of Forty-Hours; here, as in
Vienna and elsewhere. In Vienna was a Three Days' solemn Fast: the like
in Prag, or better; with procession to the shrine of St. Vitus,--little
likely to help, I should fear. 'Rise, all fencible men,' exclaims the
Government,--'at least we will ballot, and make you rise:'--Militia
people enter Prag to the extent of 10,000; like to avail little, one
would fear. General Harsch, with reinforcement of real soldiers,
is despatched from Vienna; Harsch, one of our ablest soldiers since
Khevenhuller died, gets in still in time; and thus increases the
Garrison of regulars to 4,000, with a vigorous Captain to guide it.
Old Count Ogilvy, the same whom Saxe surprised two years ago in
the moonlight, snatching ladders from the gallows,--Ogilvy is again
Commandant; but this time nominal mainly, and with better outlooks,
Harsch being under him. In relays, 3,000 of the Militia men dig and
shovel night and day; repairing, perfecting the ramparts of the place.
Then, as to provisions, endless corn is introduced,--farmers forced, the
unwilling at the bayonet's point, to deliver in their corn; much of
it in sheaf, so that we have to thrash it in the market-place, in the
streets that are wide: and thus in Prag is heard the sound of flails,
among the Militia-drums and so many other noises. With the great
church-organs growling; and the bass and treble MISERERE of the poor
superstitious People rising, to St. Vitus and others. In fact, it is a
general Dance of St. Vitus,--except that of the flails, and Militia-men
working at the ramparts,--mostly not leading any-whither." ["LETTER from
a Citizen of Prag," date, 21st Sept. (in _Helden-Geschichte,_  ii. 1168),
which gives several curious details.]

Meanwhile Friedrich's march from west, from north, from east, is flowing
on; diligent, swift; punctual to its times, its places; and meets no
impediment to speak of. At Tetschen on the Saxon-Bohemian Frontier,--a
pleasant Schloss perched on its crags, as Tourists know, where the
Elbe sweeps into Saxon Switzerland and its long stone labyrinths,--at
Tetschen the Austrians had taken post; had tried to block the River,
driving piles into it, and tumbling boulders into it, with a view to
stop the 480 Prussian Boats. These people needed to be torn out, their
piles and they: which was done in two days, the soldier part of it;
and occupied the boatmen above a week, before all was clear again.
Prosperous, correct to program, all the rest; not needing mention from
us;--here are the few sparks from it that dwell in one's memory:--

"AUGUST 15th, 1744, King left Potsdam; joined his First Column that
night, at Wittenberg. Through Mieissen, Torgau, Freyberg; is at
Peterswalde, eastern slope of the Metal Mountains, August 25th; all the
Columns now on Bohemian ground.

"Friedrich had crossed Elbe by the Bridge of Meissen: on the
southern shore, politely waiting to receive his Majesty, there stood
Feldmarschall the Duke of Weissenfels; to whom the King gave his hand,"
no doubt in friendly style, "and talked for above half an hour,"--with
such success! thinks Friedrich by and by. We have heard of Weissenfels
before; the same poor Weissenfels who was Wilhelmina's Wooer in old
time, now on the verge of sixty; an extremely polite but weakish old
gentleman; accidentally preserved in History. One of those conspicuous
"Human Clothes-Horses" (phantasmal all but the digestive part), which
abound in that Eighteenth Century and others like it; and distress
your Historical studies. Poor old soul; now Feldmarschall and
Commander-in-Chief here. Has been in Turk and other Wars; with little
profit to himself or others. Used to like his glass, they say; is still
very poor, though now Duke in reality as well as title (succeeded two
egregious Brothers, some years since, who had been spendthrift): he has
still one other beating to get in this world,--from Friedrich next year.
Died altogether, two years hence; and Wilhelmina heard no more of him.

"At Meissen Bridge, say some, was this Half-hour's Interview; at
Pirna, the Bridge of Pirna, others say; [See Orlich, ii. 25;
and _Helden-Geschichte,_  ii. 1166.]--quite indifferent to us which. At
Pirna, and hither and thither in Saxon Switzerland, Friedrich certainly
was. 'Who ever saw such positions, your Majesty?' For Friedrich is
always looking out, were it even from the window of his carriage, and
putting military problems to himself in all manner of scenery, 'What
would a man do, in that kind of ground, if attacking, if attacked? with
that hill, that brook, that bit of bog?' and advises every Officer to
be continually doing the like. [MILITARY INSTRUCTIONS? RULES FOR A
GOOD COMMANDER OF &c.?--I have, for certain, read this Passage; but the
reference is gone again, like a sparrow from the house-top!] That is the
value of picturesque or other scenery to Friedrich, and their effect on
good Prussian Officers and him.

"... At Tetschen, Colonel Kahlbutz," diligent Prussian Colonel, "plucks
out those 100 Austrians from their rock nest there; makes them prisoners
of war;--which detained the Leitmeritz branch of us two days. August
28th, junction at Leitmeritz thereupon. Magazine established there.
Boats coming on presently. Friedrich himself camped at Lobositz in this
part,"--Lobositz, or Lowositz, which he will remember one day.

"AUGUST 29th, March to Budin; that is, southward, across the Eger,
arrive within forty miles of Prag. Austrian Bathyani, summoned hastily
out of his Bavarian posts, to succor in this pressing emergency,
has arrived in these neighborhoods,--some 12,000 regulars under him,
preceded by clouds of hussars, whom Ziethen smites a little, by way of
handsel;--no other Austrian force to speak of hereabouts; and we are now
between Bathyani and Prag.

"SEPTEMBER 1st, To Mickowitz, near Welwarn, twenty miles from Prag.
September 2d, Camp on the Weissenberg there." [ _Helden-Geschichte,_  i.
1080.]

And so they are all assembled about Prag, begirdling the poor
City,--third Siege it has stood within these three years (since that
moonlight November night in 1741);--and are only waiting for their heavy
artillery to begin battering. The poor inhabitants, in spite of three
sieges; the 10,000 raw militia-men, mostly of Hungarian breed; the 4,000
regulars, and Harsch and old Ogilvy, are all disposed to do their best.
Friedrich is naturally in haste to get hold of Prag. But he finds, on
taking survey: that the sword-in-hand method is not now, as in 1741,
feasible at all; that the place is in good posture of strength; and
will need a hot battering to tear it open. Owing to that accident at
Tetschen, the siege-cannon are not yet come up: "Build your batteries,
your Moldau-bridges, your communications, till the cannon come; and
beware of Bathyani meddling with your cannon by the road!"

"Bathyani is within twenty miles of us, at Beraun, a compact little Town
to southwest; gathering a Magazine there; and ready for enterprises,--in
more force than Friedrich guesses. 'Drive him out, seize that Magazine
of his!' orders Friedrich (September 5th); and despatches General
Hacke on it, a right man,"--at whose wedding we assisted (wedding to
an heiress, long since, in Friedrich Wilhelm's time), if anybody now
remembered. "And on the morrow there falls out a pretty little 'Action
of Beraun,' about which great noise was made in the Gazettes PRO and
CONTRA: which did not dislodge Bathyani by airy means; but which might
easily have ruined the impetuous Hacke and his 6,000, getting into
masked batteries, Pandour whirlwinds, charges of horses 'from
front, from rear, and from both flanks,'--had not he, with masterly
promptitude, whirled himself out of it, snatched instantly what best
post there was, and defended himself inexpugnably there, for six
hours, till relief came." [DIE BEY BERAUN VORGEFALLENE ACTION (in
Seyfarth, _Beylage,_ i. 136, 137).] Brilliant little action, well
performed on both sides, but leading to nothing; and which shall not
concern us farther. Except to say that Bathyani did now, more at his
leisure, retire out of harm's way; and begin collecting Magazines at
Pilsen far rearward, which may prove useful to Prince Karl, in the route
Prince Karl is upon.

Siege-cannon having at last come (September 8th), the batteries are all
mounted:--on Wednesday, 9th, late at night, the Artillery, "in enormous
quantity," opens its dread throat; poor Prag is startled from its bed
by torrents of shot, solid and shell, from three different quarters; and
makes haste to stand to its guns. From three different quarters;
from Bubenetsch northward; from the Upland of St. Lawrence (famed
WEISSENBERG, or White-Hill) westward; and from the Ziscaberg eastward
(Hill of Zisca, where iron Zisca posted himself on a grand occasion
once),--which latter is a broad long Hill, west end of it falling
sheer over Prag; and on another point of it, highest point of all, the
Praguers have a strong battery and works. The Prag guns otherwise are
not too effectual; planted mostly on low ground. By much the best Prag
battery is this of the Ziscaberg. And this, after two days' experience
had of it, the Prussians determine to take on the morrow.

SEPTEMBER 12th, Schwerin, who commands on that side, assaults
accordingly; with the due steadfastness and stormfulness: throwing
shells and balls by way of prelude. Friedrich, with some group of
staff-officers and dignitaries, steps out on the Bubenetsch post, to see
how this affair of the Ziscaberg will prosper: the Praguers thereabouts,
seeing so many dignitaries, turn cannon on them. "Disperse, IHR HERREN;
have a care!" cried Friedrich; not himself much minding, so intent upon
the Ziscaberg. And could have skipt indifferently over your cannon-balls
ploughing the ground,--had not one fateful ball shattered out the life
of poor Prince Wilhelm; a good young Cousin of his, shot down here at
his hand. Doubtless a sharp moment for the King. Prince Margraf Wilhelm
and a poor young page, there they lie dead; indifferent to the Ziscaberg
and all coming wars of mankind. Lamentation, naturally, for this young
man,--Brother to the one who fell at Mollwitz, youngest Brother of the
Margraf Karl, who commands in this Bubenetsch redoubt:--But we must lift
our eye-glass again; see how Schwerin is prospering. Schwerin, with due
steadfastness and stormfulness, after his prelude of bomb-shells, rushes
on double-quick; cannot be withstood; hurls out the Praguers, and seizes
their battery; a ruinous loss to them.

Their grand Zisca redoubt is gone, then; and two subsidiary small
redoubts behind it withal, which the French had built, and named "the
magpie-nests (NIDS A PIE);" these also are ours. And we overhang, from
our Zisca Hill, the very roofs, as it were; and there is nothing but a
long bare curtain now in this quarter, ready to be battered in breach,
and soon holed, if needful. It is not needful,--not quite. In the course
of three days more, our Bubenetsch battery, of enormous power, has been
so diligent, it has set fire to the Water-mill; burns irretrievably the
Water-mill, and still worse, the wooden Sluice of the Moldau; so that
the river falls to the everywhere wadable pitch. And Governor Harsch
perceives that all this quarter of the Town is open to any comer;--and,
in fact, that he will have to get away, the best he can.

White flag accordingly (Tuesday, 15th): "Free withdrawal, to the
Wischerad; won't you?" "By no manner of means!" answers Friedrich.
Bids Schwerin from his Ziscaberg make a hole or two in that "curtain"
opposite him; and gets ready for storm. Upon which Harsch, next morning,
has to beat the chamade, and surrender Prisoner of War. And thus,
Wednesday, 16th, it is done: a siege of one week, no more,--after
all that thrashing of grain, drilling of militia, and other spirited
preparation. Harsch could not help it; the Prussian cannonading was
so furious. [Orlich, ii. 36-39; _Helden-Geschichte,_  i. 1082, and ii.
1168; _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 56; &c. &c.]

Prag has to swear fealty to the Kaiser; and "pay a ransom of 200,000
pounds." Drilled militia, regulars, Hungarians, about 16,000,--only that
many of the Tolpatches contrived to whisk loose,--are marched prisoners
to Glatz and other strong places. Prag City, with plenty of provision in
it, is ours. A brilliant beginning of a Campaign; the eyes of all Europe
turned again, in very various humor, on this young King. If only the
French do their duty, and hang well on the skirts of Marshal Traun (or
of Prince Karl, the Cloak of Traun), who is hastening hitherward all he
can.



Chapter III.--FRIEDRICH, DILIGENT IN HIS BOHEMIAN CONQUESTS,
UNEXPECTEDLY COMES UPON PRINCE KARL, WITH NO FRENCH ATTENDING HIM.

This electrically sudden operation on Prag was considered by astonished
mankind, whatever else they might think about it, a decidedly brilliant
feat of War: falling like a bolt out of the blue,--like three bolts,
suddenly coalescing over Prag, and striking it down. Friedrich himself,
though there is nothing of boast audible here or anywhere, was evidently
very well satisfied; and thought the aspects good. There is Prince Karl
whirling instantly back from his Strasburg Prospects; the general St.
Vitus Dance of Austrian things rising higher and higher in these home
parts:--reasonable hope that "in the course of one Campaign," proud
obstinate Austria might feel itself so wrung and screwed as to be glad
of Peace with neighbors not wishing War. That was the young
King's calculation at this time. And, had France done at all as it
promised,--or had the young King himself been considerably wiser than he
was,--he had not been disappointed in the way we shall see!

Friedrich admits he did not understand War at this period. His own
scheme now was: To move towards the southwest, there to abolish Bathyani
and his Tolpatches, who are busy gathering Magazines for Prince Karl's
advent; to seize the said Magazines, which will be very useful to us;
then advance straight towards the Passes of the Bohemian Mountains.
Towns of Furth, Waldmunchen, unfortunate Town of Cham (burnt by Trenck,
where masons are now busy); these stand successive in the grand Pass,
through which the highway runs; some hundred miles or so from where
we are: march, at one's swiftest, thitherward, Bathyani's Magazines to
help; and there await Prince Karl? It was Friedrich's own notion; not a
bad one, though not the best. The best, he admits, would have been:
To stay pretty much where he was; abolish Bathyani's Tolpatch people,
seizing their Magazines, and collecting others; in general, well rooting
and fencing himself in Prag, and in the Circles that lie thereabouts
upon the Elbe,--bounded to southward by the Sazawa (branch of the
Moldau), which runs parallel to the Elbe;--but well refusing to stir
much farther at such an advanced season of the year.

That second plan would have been the wisest:--then why not, follow it?
Too tame a plan for the youthful mind. Besides, we perceive, as indeed
is intimated by himself, he dreaded the force of public opinion in
France. "Aha, look at your King of Prussia again. Gone to conquer
Bohemia; and, except the Three Circles he himself is to have of it,
lets Bohemia go to the winds!" This sort of thing, Friedrich admits, he
dreaded too much, at that young period; so loud had the criticisms
been on him, in the time of the Breslau Treaty: "Out upon your King of
Prussia; call you that an honorable Ally!" Undoubtedly a weakness in the
young King; inasmuch, says he, as "every General [and every man, add we]
should look to the fact, not to the rumor of the fact." Well; but, at
least, he will adopt his own other notion; that of making for the Passes
of the Bohemian Mountains; to abolish Bathyani at least, and lock the
door upon Prince Karl's advent? That was his own plan; and, though
second-best, that also would have done well, had there been no third.

But there was, as we hinted, a third plan, ardently favored by
Belleisle, whose war-talent Friedrich much respected at this time: plan
built on Belleisle's reminiscences of the old Tabor-Budweis businesses,
and totally inapplicable now. Belleisle said, "Go southeast, not
southwest; right towards the Austrian Frontier itself; that will
frighten Austria into a fine tremor. Shut up the roads from Austria:
Budweis, Neuhaus; seize those two Highroad Towns, and keep them, if you
would hold Bohemia; the want of them was our ruin there." Your ruin,
yes: but your enemy was not coming from Alsace and the southwest then.
He was coming from Austria; and your own home lay on the southwest: it
is all different now! Friedrich might well think himself bewitched not
to have gone for Cham and Furth, and the Passes of the Bohmer-Wald,
according to his own notion. But so it was; he yielded to the big
reputation of Belleisle, and to fear of what the world would say of him
in France; a weakness which he will perhaps be taught not to repeat. In
fact, he is now about to be taught several things;--and will have to pay
his school-wages as he goes.



FRIEDRICH, LEAVING SMALL GARRISON IN PRAG, RUSHES SWIFTLY UP THE MOLDAU
VALLEY, UPON THE TABOR-BUDWEIS COUNTRY; TO PLEASE HIS FRENCH FRIENDS.

Friedrich made no delay in Prag; in haste at this late time of year.
September 17th, on the very morrow of the Siege, the Prussians get in
motion southward; on the 19th, Friedrich, from his post to north of the
City, defiles through Prag, on march to Kunraditz,--first stage on that
questionable Expedition up the Moldau Valley, right bank; towards Tabor,
Budweis, Neuhaus; to threaten Austria, and please Belleisle and the
French.

Prag is left under General Einsiedel with a small garrison of
5,000;--Einsiedel, a steady elderly gentleman, favorite of Friedrich
Wilhelm's, has brief order, or outline of order to be filled up by his
own good sense. Posadowsky follows the march, with as many meal-wagons
as possible,--draught-cattle in very ineffectual condition. Our main
Magazine is at Leitmeritz (should have been brought on to Prag, thinks
Friedrich); Commissariat very ill-managed in comparison to what it ought
to be,--to what it shall be, if we ever live to make another Campaign.
Heavy artillery is left in Prag (another fault); and from each regiment,
one of its baggage-wagons. [ _Helden-Geschichte,_  i. 1083; Orlich, ii.
41 et seqq.; _Frederic,_ iii. 59; &c.] "We rest a day here at Kunraditz:
21st September, get to the Sazawa River;--22d, to Bistritz (rest a
day);--26th, to Miltschin; and 27th, to Tabor:"--But the Diary would be
tedious.

Friedrich goes in two Columns; one along the great road towards Tabor,
under Schwerin this, and Friedrich mainly with him; the other to the
right, along the River's bank, under Leopold, Young Dessauer, which has
to go by wild country roads, or now and then roads of its own making;
and much needs the pioneer (a difficult march in the shortening days).
Posadowsky follows with the proviant, drawn by cattle of the horse and
ox species, daily falling down starved: great swearing there too,
I doubt not! General Nassau is vanguard, and stretches forward
successfully at a much lighter pace.

There are two Rivers, considerable branches of the Moldau, coming from
eastward; which, and first of them the Sazawa, concern us here. After
mounting the southern Uplands from Prag for a day or two, you then begin
to drop again, into the hollow of a River called Sazawa, important in
Bohemian Wars. It is of winding course, the first considerable branch
of the Moldau, rising in Teutschbrod Country, seventy or eighty miles
to east of us: in regard to Sazawa, there is, at present, no difficulty
about crossing; the Country being all ours. After the Sazawa, mount
again, long miles, day after day, through intricate stony desolation,
rocks, bogs, untrimmed woods, you will get to Miltschin, thence to
Tabor: Miltschin is the crown of that rough moor country; from Prag to
Tabor is some sixty miles. After Miltschin the course of those brown
mountain-brooks is all towards the Luschnitz, the next considerable
branch of the Moldau; branch still longer and more winding than the
Sazawa; Tabor towers up near this branch; Budweis, on the Moldau itself,
is forty miles farther; and there at last you are out of the stony
moors, and in a rich champaign comfortable to man and horse, were you
but once there, after plodding through the desolations. But from that
Sazawa by the Luschnitz on to Budweis, mounting and falling in such
fashion, there must be ninety miles or thereby. Plod along; and keep
a sharp eye on the whirling clouds of Pandours, for those too have got
across upon us,--added to the other tempests of Autumn.

On the ninth day of their march, the Prussians begin to descry on
the horizon ahead the steeples and chimney-tops of Tabor, on its high
scarped rock, or "Hill of Zisca,"--for it was Zisca and his Hussites
that built themselves this Bit of Inexpugnability, and named it Tabor
from their Bibles,--in those waste mountain regions. On the tenth day
(27th September), the Prussians without difficulty took Tabor; walls
being ruined, garrison small. We lie at Tabor till the 30th, last day
of September. Thence, 2d October, part of us to Moldau-Tein rightwards;
where cross the Moldau by a Bridge,--"Bridge" one has heard of, in old
Broglio times;--cross there, with intent (easily successful) to snatch
that "Castle of Frauenberg," darling of Broglio, for which he fought his
Pharsalia of a Sahay to no purpose!

Both Columns got united at Tabor; and paused for a day or two, to rest,
and gather up their draggled skirts there. The Expedition does not
improve in promise, as we advance in it; the march one of the
most untowardly; and Posadowsky comes up with only half of his
provision-carts,--half of his cattle having fallen down of bad weather,
hill-roads and starvation; what could he do? That is an ominous
circumstance, not the less.

Three things are against the Prussians on this march; two of them
accidental things. FIRST, there is, at this late season too, the
intrinsic nature of the Country; which Friedrich with emphasis describes
as boggy, stony, precipitous; a waste, hungry and altogether barren
Country,--too emphatically so described. But then SECONDLY, what might
have been otherwise, the Population, worked upon by Austrian officials,
all fly from the sight of us; nothing but fireless deserted hamlets; and
the corn, if they ever had any, all thrashed and hidden. No amount
of money can purchase any service from them. Poor dark creatures; not
loving Austria much, but loving some others even less, it would appear.
Of Bigoted Papist Creed, for one thing; that is a great point. We do not
meddle with their worship more or less; but we are Heretics, and they
hate us as the Night. Which is a dreadful difficulty you always have
in Bohemia: nowhere but in the Circle of Konigsgraz, where there
are Hussites (far to the rear of us at this time), will you find it
otherwise. This is difficulty second.

Then, THIRDLY, what much aggravates it,--we neglected to abolish
Bathyani! And here are Bathyani's Pandours come across the Moldau on
us. Plenty of Pandours;--to whom "10,000 fresh Hungarians," of a new
Insurrection which has been got up there, are daily speeding forward to
add themselves:--such a swarm of hornets, as darkens the very daylight
for you. Vain to scourge them down, to burn them off by blaze of
gunpowder: they fly fast; but are straightway back again. They lurk in
these bushy wildernesses, scraggy woods: no foraging possible, unless
whole regiments are sent out to do it; you cannot get a letter safely
carried for them. They are an unspeakable contemptible grief to the
earnest leader of men.--Let us proceed, however; it will serve nothing
to complain. Let us hope the French sit well on the skirts of Prince
Karl: these sorrowful labors may all turn to good, in that case.

Friedrich pushes on from Tabor; shoots partly (as we have seen) across
the Moldau, to the left bank as well; captures romantic Frauenberg on
its high rock, where Broglio got into such a fluster once. We could
push to Pisek, too, and make a "Bivouac of Pisek," if we lost our wits!
Nassau is in Budweis, in Neuhaus; and proper garrisons are gone thither:
nothing wanting on our side of the business. But these Pandours, these
10,000 Insurrection Hungarians, with their Trencks spurring them! A
continual unblessed swarm of hornets, these; which shut out the very
light of day from us. Too literally the light of day: we can get no
free messaging from part to part of our own Army even. "As many as six
Orderlies have been despatched to an outlying General; and not one of
them could get through to him. They have snapt up three Letter-bags
destined for the King himself. For four weeks he is absolutely shut out
from the rest of Europe;" knows not in the least what the Kaiser, or the
Most Christian or any other King, is doing; or whether the French are
sitting well on Prince Karl's skirts, or not attempting that at all.
This also is a thing to be amended, a thing you had to learn, your
Majesty? An Army absolutely shut out from news, from letters, messages
to or fro, and groping its way in darkness, owing to these circumambient
thunder-clouds of Tolpatches, is not a well-situated Army! And alas,
when at last the Letter-bag did get through, and--But let us not
anticipate!

At Tabor there arose two opinions; which, in spite of the King's
presence, was a new difficulty. South from Tabor a day's march, the
Highway splits; direct way for Vienna; left-hand goes to Neuhaus,
right-hand, or straightforward rather, goes to Budweis, bearing upon
Linz: which of these two? Nassau has already seized Budweis; and it is
a habitable champaign country in comparison. Neuhaus, farther from the
Moldau and its uses, but more imminent on Austria, would be easy to
seize; and would frighten the Enemy more. Leopold the Young Dessauer is
for Budweis; rapid Schwerin, a hardy outspoken man, is emphatic for the
other place as Head-quarter. So emphatic are both, that the two Generals
quarrel there; and Friedrich needs his authority to keep them from
outbreaks, from open incompatibility henceforth, which would be
destructive to the service. For the rest, Friedrich seizes both places;
sends a detachment to Neuhaus as well; but holds by Budweis and the
Moldau region with his main Army; which was not quite gratifying to the
hardy Schwerin. On the opposite or left bank, holding Frauenberg, the
renowned Hill-fortress there, we make inroads at discretion: but the
country is woody, favorable to Pandours; and the right bank is our chief
scene of action. How we are to maintain ourselves in this country? To
winter in these towns between the Sazawa and the Luschnitz? Unless the
French sit well on Prince Karl's skirts, it will not be possible.



THE FRENCH ARE LITTLE GRATEFUL FOR THE PLEASURE DONE THEM AT SUCH
RUINOUS EXPENSE.

French sitting well on Prince Karl's skirts? They are not molesting
Prince Karl in the smallest; never tried such a thing;--are turned away
to the Brisgan, to the Upper Rhine Country; gone to besiege Freyburg
there, and seize Towns; about the Lake of Constance, as if there were no
Friedrich in the game! It must be owned the French do liberally pay off
old scores against Friedrich,--if, except in their own imagination,
they had old scores against him. No man ever delivered them from a more
imminent peril; and they, the rope once cut that was strangling
them, magnificently forget who cut it; and celebrate only their own
distinguished conduct during and after the operation. To a degree truly
wonderful.

It was moonlight, clear as day that night, 23d August, when Prince Karl
had to recross the Rhine, close in their neighborhood; [_Guerre de
Boheme,_ iii. 196.]--and instead of harassing Prince Karl "to half or to
whole ruin," as the bargain was, their distinguished conduct consisted
in going quietly to their beds (old Marechal de Noailles even calling
back some of his too forward subalterns), and joyfully leaving Prince
Karl, then and afterwards, to cross the Rhine, and march for Bohmen, at
his own perfect convenience.

"Seckendorf will sit on Karl's skirts," they said: "too late for US,
this season; next season, you shall see!" Such was their theory,
after Louis got that cathartic, and rose from bed. Schmettau, with his
importunities, which at last irritated everybody, could make nothing
more of it. "Let the King of France crown his glories by the Siege of
Freyburg, the conquest of Brisgau:--for behoof of the poor Kaiser, don't
you observe? Hither Austria is the Kaiser's;--and furthermore, were
Freyburg gone, there will be no invading of Elsass again" (which is
another privately very interesting point)!

And there, at Freyburg, the Most Christian King now is, and his Army up
to the knees in mud, conquering Hither Austria; besieging Freyburg, with
much difficulty owing to the wet,--besieging there with what energy;
a spectacle to the world! And has, for the present, but one wife, no
mistress either! With rapturous eyes France looks on; with admiration
too big for words. Voltaire, I have heard, made pilgrimage to Freyburg,
with rhymed Panegyric in his pocket; saw those miraculous operations
of a Most Christian King miraculously awakened; and had the honor to
present said Panegyric; and be seen, for the first time, by the royal
eyes,--which did not seem to relish him much. [The Panegyric (EPITRE AU
ROI DEVANT FRIBOURG) is in _OEuvres de Voltaire,_ xvii. 184.] Since the
first days of October, Freyburg had been under constant assault; "amid
rains, amid frosts; a siege long and murderous" (to the besieging
party);--and was not got till November 5th; not quite entirely, the
Citadels of it, till November 25th; Majesty gone home to Paris, to
illuminations and triumphal arches, in the interim. [Adelung, iv. 266;
Barbier, ii. 414 (13th November, &c.), for the illuminations, grand in
the extreme, in spite of wild rains and winds.] It had been a difficult
and bloody conquest to him, this of Freyburg and the Brisgau Country;
and I never heard that either the Kaiser or he got sensible advantage by
it,--though Prince Karl, on the present occasion, might be said to get a
great deal.

"Seckendorf will do your Prince Karl," they had cried always:
"Seckendorf and his Prussian Majesty! Are not we conquering Hither
Austria here, for the Kaiser's behoof?" Seckendorf they did officially
appoint to pursue; appoint or allow;--and laid all the blame on
Seckendorf; who perhaps deserved his share of it. Very certain it is,
Seckendorf did little or nothing to Prince Karl; marched "leisurely
behind him through the Ober-Pfalz,"--skirting Baireuth Country, Karl and
he, to Wilhelmina's grief; [Her Letters ( _OEuvres de Frederic,_ xxvii.
i. 133, &c.).]--"leisurely behind him at a distance of four days," knew
better than meddle with Prince Karl. So that Prince Karl, "in twenty-one
marches," disturbed only by the elements and bad roads, reached
Waldmunchen 26th September, in the Furth-Cham Country; [Ranke, iii.
187.] and was heard to exclaim: "We are let off for the fright, then
(NOUS VOILA QUITTES POUR LA PEUR)!"--Seckendorf, finding nothing to live
upon in Ober-Pfalz, could not attend Prince Karl farther; but turned
leftwards home to Bavaria; made a kind of Second "Reconquest of Bavaria"
(on exactly the same terms as the First, Austrian occupants being all
called off to assist in Bohmen again);--concerning which, here is an
Excerpt:--

"Seckendorf, following at his leisure, and joined by the Hessians and
Pfalzers, so as now to exceed 30,000, leaves Prince Karl and the rest of
the enterprise to do as it can; and applies himself, for his own share,
as the needfulest thing, to getting hold of Bavaria again, that his poor
Kaiser may have where to lay his head, and pay old servants their wages.
Dreadfully exclaimed against, the old gentleman, especially by the
French co-managers: 'Why did not the old traitor stick in the rear of
Prince Karl, in the difficult passes, and drive him prone,--while we
went besieging Freyburg, and poaching about, trying for a bit of the
Brisgau while chance served!' A traitor beyond doubt; probably bought
with money down: thinks Valori. But, after all, what could Seckendorf
do? He is now of weight for Barenklau and Bavaria, not for much more. He
does sweep Barenklau and his Austrians from Bavaria, clear out (in the
course of this October), all but Ingolstadt and two or three strong
towns,--Passau especially, 'which can be blockaded, and afterwards
besieged if needful.' For the rest, he is dreadfully ill-off for
provisions, incapable of the least, attempt on Passau (as Friedrich
urged, on hearing of him again); and will have to canton himself in
home-quarters, and live by his shifts till Spring.

"The noise of French censure rises loud, against not themselves,
but against Seckendorf:--Friedrich, before that Tolpatch eclipse of
Correspondence [when three of his Letter-bags were seized, and he fell
quite dark], had too well foreboded, and contemptuously expressed his
astonishment at the blame BOTH were well earning: Passau, said he,
cannot you go at least upon Passau; which might alarm the Enemy a
little, and drag him homewards? 'Adieu, my dear Seckendorf, your Officer
will tell you how we did the Siege of Prag. You and your French are
wetted hens (POULES MOUILLEES),'--cowering about like drenched hens in a
day of set rain. 'As I hear nothing of either of you, I must try to get
out of this business without your help;'"--otherwise it will be ill for
me indeed! [Excerpted Fragment of a Letter from Friedrich,--(exact
date not given, date of EXCERPT is, Donanworth Country, 23d September,
1744),--which the French Agent in Seckendorf's Army had a reading of
(_Campagnes de Coigny,_ iv. 185-187; ib. 216-219: cited in Adelung, iv.
225).] "Which latter expression alarmed the French, and set them upon
writing and bustling, but not upon doing anything."

"Prince Karl had crossed the Rhine unmolested, in the clearest
moonlight, August 23d-24th; Seckendorf was not wholly got to Heilbronn,
September 8th: a pretty way behind Prince Karl! The 6,000 Hessians,
formerly in English pay, indignant Landgraf Wilhelm [who never could
forgive that Machiavellian conduct of Carteret at Hanau, never till he
found out what it really was] has, this year, put into French pay. And
they have now joined Seckendorf; [Espagnac, ii. 13; Buchholz, ii. 123.]
Prince Friedrich [Britannic Majesty's Son-in-law], not good fat Uncle
George, commanding them henceforth:--with extreme lack of profit to
Prince Friedrich, to the Hessians, and to the French, as will appear in
time. These 6,000, and certain thousands of Pfalzers likewise in French
pay, are now with Seckendorf, and have raised him to above 30,000;--it
is the one fruit King Friedrich has got by that 'Union of Frankfurt,'
and by all his long prospective haggling, and struggling for a 'Union
of German Princes in general.' Two pears, after that long shaking of
the tree; both pears rotten, or indeed falling into Seckendorf, who is
a basket of such quality! 'Seckendorf, increased in this munificent
manner, can he still do nothing?' cry the French: 'the old traitor!'--'I
have no magazines,' said Seckendorf, 'nothing to live upon, to shoot
with; no money!' And it is a mutual crescendo between the 'perfidious
Seckendorf' and them; without work done. In the Nurnberg Country, some
Hussars of his picked up Lord Holderness, an English Ambassador making
for Venice by that bad route. 'Prisoner, are not you?' But they did not
use him ill; on consideration, the Heads of Imperial Departments gave
him a Pass, and he continued his Venetian Journey (result of it zero)
without farther molestation that I heard of. [Adelung, iv. 222.]

"These French-Seckendorf cunctations, recriminations and drenched-hen
procedures are an endless sorrow to poor Kaiser Karl; who at length
can stand it no longer; but resolves, since at least Bavaria, though
moneyless and in ruins, is his, he will in person go thither; confident
that there will be victual and equipment discoverable for self and Army
were he there. Remonstrances avail not: 'Ask me to die with honor, ask
me not to lie rotting here;' [Ib. iv. 241.]--and quits Frankfurt, and
the Reich's-Diet and its babble, 17th October, 1744 (small sorrow, were
it for the last time),--and enters his Munchen in the course of a week.
[17th October, 1744, leaves Frankfurt; arrives in Munchen 23d (Adelung,
iv. 241-244).] Munchen is transported with joy to see the Legitimate
Sovereign again; and blazes into illuminations,--forgetful who caused
its past wretchednesses, hoping only all wretchedness is now ended.
Let ruined huts, and Cham and the burnt Towns, rebuild themselves; the
wasted hedges make up their gaps again: here is the King come home!
Here, sure enough, is an unfortunate Kaiser of the Holy Romish Reich,
who can once more hope to pay his milk-scores, being a loved Kurfurst of
Bavaria at least. Very dear to the hearts of these poor people;--and
to their purses, interests and skins, has not he in another sense been
dear? What a price the ambitions and cracked phantasms of that weak
brain have cost the seemingly innocent population! Population harried,
hungered down, dragged off to perish in Italian Wars; a Country burnt,
tribulated, torn to ruin, under the harrow of Fate and ruffian Trenck
and Company. Britannic George, rather a dear morsel too, has come
much cheaper hitherto. England is not yet burnt; nothing burning
there,--except the dull fire of deliriums; Natural Stupidities all set
flaming, which (whatever it may BE in the way of loss) is not felt as a
loss, but rather as a comfort for the time being;--and in fact there are
only, say, a forty or fifty thousand armed Englishmen rotted down, and
scarcely a Hundred Millions of money yet spent. Nothing to speak of,
in the cause of Human Liberty. Why Populations suffer for their guilty
Kings? My friend, it is the Populations too that are guilty in having
such Kings. Reverence, sacred Respect for Human Worth, sacred Abhorrence
of Human Unworth, have you considered what it means? These poor
Populations have it not, or for long generations have had it less and
less. Hence, by degrees, this sort of 'Kings' to them, and enormous
consequences following!"--

Karl VII. got back to Munchen 23d October, 1744; and the tar-barrels
being once burnt, and indispensable sortings effected, he went to the
field along with Seckendorf, to encourage his men under Seckendorf, and
urge the French by all considerations to come on. And really did what
he could, poor man. But the cordage of his life had been so strained and
torn, he was not now good for much; alas, it had been but little he was
ever good for. A couple of dear Kurfursts, his Father and he; have stood
these Bavarian Countries very high, since the Battle of Blenheim and
downwards!



Chapter IV.--FRIEDRICH REDUCED TO STRAITS; CANNOT MAINTAIN HIS MOLDAU
CONQUESTS AGAINST PRICE KARL.

One may fancy what were Friedrich's reflections when he heard that
Prince Karl had, prosperously and unmolested, got across, by those
Passes from the Ober-Pfalz, into Bohmen and the Circle of Pilsen, into
junction with Bathyani and his magazines; ["At Mirotitz, October 2d"
(Ranke, iii. 194); Orlich, ii. 49.] heard, moreover, that the Saxons,
20,000 strong, under Weissenfels, crossing the Metal Mountains, coming
on by Eger and Karlsbad regions, were about uniting with him (bound by
Treaty to assist the Hungarian Majesty when invaded);--and had finally,
what confirms everything, that the said Prince Karl in person (making
for Budweis, "just seen his advanced guard," said rumor under mistake)
was but few miles off. Few miles off, on the other side of the
Moldau;--of unknown strength, hidden in the circumambient clouds of
Pandours.

Suppressing all the rages and natural reflections but those needful for
the moment, Friedrich (October 4th, by Moldau-Tein) dashes across the
Moldau, to seek Prince Karl, at the place indicated, and at once smite
him down if possible;--that will be a remedy for all things. Prince Karl
is not there, nor was; the indication had been false; Friedrich searches
about, for four days, to no purpose. Prince Karl, he then learns for
certain, has crossed the Moldau farther down, farther northward, between
Prag and us. Means to cut us off from Prag, then, which is our fountain
of life in these circumstances? That is his intention:--"Old Traun, who
is with him, understands his trade!" thinks Friedrich. Traun, or the
Prince, is diligently forming magazines, all the Country carrying to
him, in the Town of Beneschau, hither side of the Sazawa, some seventy
miles north of us, an important Town where roads meet:--unless we can
get hold of Beneschau, it will be ill with us here! Across the River
again, at any rate; and let us hasten thither. That is an affair which
must be looked to; and speed is necessary!

OCTOBER 8th, After four days' search ending in this manner, Friedrich
swiftly crosses towards Tabor again, to Bechin (over on the Luschnitz,
one march), there to collect himself for Beneschau and the other
intricacies. Towards Tabor again, by his Bridge of Moldau-Tein;--clouds
of Pandour people, larger clouds than usual, hanging round; hidden by
the woods till Friedrich is gone. Friedrich being gone, there occurs the
AFFAIR OF MOLDAU-TEIN, much talked of in Prussian Books. Of which, in
extreme condensation, this is the essence:--

"OCTOBER 9th. Friedrich once off to Bechin, the Pandour clouds gather
on his rearguard next day at Tein Bridge here, to the number of about
10,000 [rumor counts 14,000]; and with desperate intent, and more
regularity than usual, attack the Tein-Bridge Party, which consists
of perhaps 2,000 grenadiers and hussars, the whole under Ziethen's
charge,--obliged to wait for a cargo of Bread-wagons here. 'Defend your
Bridge, with cannon, with case-shot:' that is what the grenadiers do.
The Pandour cloud, with horrid lanes cut in it, draws back out of this;
then plunges at the River itself, which can be ridden above or below;
rides it, furious, by the thousand: 'Off with your infantry; quit the
Bridge!' cries Ziethen to his Captain there: 'Retire you, Parthian-like;
thrice-steady,' orders Ziethen: 'It is to be hoped our hussars can deal
with this mad-doggery!' And they do it; cutting in with iron discipline,
with fierceness not undrilled; a wedge of iron hussars, with ditto
grenadiers continually wheeling, like so many reapers steady among
wind-tossed grain; and gradually give the Pandours enough. Seven hours
of it, in all: 'of their sixty cartridges the grenadiers had fired
fifty-four,' when it ended, about 7 P.M. The coming Bread-wagons,
getting word, had to cast their loaves into the River (sad to think of);
and make for Bechin at their swiftest. But the rearguard got off with
its guns, in this victorious manner: thanks to Major-General Ziethen,
Colonel Reusch and the others concerned. [_Feldzuge der Preussen,_  i.
268; Orlich, ii. 55.]

"Ziethen handsels his Major-Generalcy in this fine way: [Patent given
him "3d October, 1744," only a week ago, "and ordered to be dated eight
months back" (Rodenbeck, i. 109).] a man who has had promotion, and also
has had none, and may again come to have none;--and is able to do either
way. Never mind, my excellent tacit friend! Ziethen is five-and-forty
gone; has a face which is beautiful to me, though one of the coarsest.
Face thrice-honest, intricately ploughed with thoughts which are well
kept silent (the thoughts, indeed, being themselves mostly inarticulate;
thoughts of a simple-hearted, much-enduring, hot-tempered son of
iron and oatmeal);--decidedly rather likable, with its lazily hanging
under-lip, and respectable bearskin cylinder atop."



FRIEDRICH TRIES TO HAVE BATTLE FROM PRINCE KARL, IN THE MOLDAU
COUNTRIES; CANNOT, OWING TO THE SKILL OF PRINCE KARL OR OF OLD
FELDMARSCHALL TRAUN;--HAS TO RETIRE BEHIND THE SAZAWA, AND ULTIMATELY
BEHIND THE ELBE, WITH MUCH LABOR IN VAIN.

OCTOBER 14th-18th: RETREAT FROM BECHIN-TABOR COUNTRY TO BENESCHAU. ...
"These Pandours give us trouble enough; no Magazine here, no living to
be had in this Country beside them. Unfortunate Colonel Jahnus went out
from Tabor lately, to look after requisitioned grains: infinite Pandours
set upon him [Muhlhausen is the memorable place]; Jahnus was obstinate
(too obstinate, thinks Friedrich), and perished on the ground, he and
200 of his. [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 61.] Nay, next, a swarm of
them came to Tabor itself, Nadasti at their head; to try whether Tabor,
with its small garrison, could not be escaladed, and perhaps Prince
Henri, who lies sick there, be taken? Tabor taught them another lesson;
sent them home with heads broken;--which Friedrich thinks was an
extremely suitable thing. But so it stands: Here by the thousand and the
ten thousand they hang round us; and Prince Karl--It is of all things
necessary we get hold of that Beneschau, and the Magazine he is
gathering there!

"Rapidity is indispensable,--and yet how quit Tabor? We have detachments
out at Neuhaus, at Budweis, and in Tabor 300 men in hospital, whom there
are no means of carrying. To leave them to the Tolpaches? Friedrich
confesses he was weak on this occasion; he could not leave these 300
men, as was his clear duty, in this extremity of War. He ordered in his
Neuhaus Detachment; not yet any of the others. He despatched Schmerin
towards Beneschau with all his speed; Schwerin was lucky enough to
take Beneschau and its provender,--a most blessed fortune,--and fences
himself there. Hearing which, Friedrich, having now got the Neuhaus
Detachment in hand, orders the other Three, the Budweis, the Tabor here,
and the Frauenberg across the River, to maintain themselves; and
then, leaving those southern regions to their chance, hastens towards
Beneschau and Schwerin; encamps (October 18th) near Beneschau,--'Camp of
Konopischt,' unattackable Camp, celebrated in the Prussian Books;--and
there, for eight days, still on the south side of Sazawa, tries every
shift to mend the bad posture of affairs in that Luschnitz-Sazawa
Country. His Three Garrisons (3,000 men in them, besides the 300 sick)
he now sees will not be able to maintain themselves; and he sends in
succession 'eight messengers,' not one messenger of whom could get
through, to bid them come away. His own hope now is for a Battle
with Prince Karl; which might remedy all things. [_OEuvres de
Frederic,_ iii. 62-64.]"

That is Friedrich's wish; but it is by no means Traun's, who sees that
hunger and wet weather will of themselves suffice for Friedrich. There
ensues accordingly, for three weeks to come, in that confused Country,
a series of swift shufflings, checkings and manoeuvrings between these
two, which is gratifying and instructive to the strategic mind, but
cannot be inflicted upon common readers. Two considerable chess-players,
an old and a young; their chess-board a bushy, rocky, marshy
parallelogram, running fifty miles straight east from Prag, and twenty
or fewer south, of which Prag is the northwest angle, and Beneschau, or
the impregnable Konopischt the southwest: the reader must conceive it;
and how Traun will not fight Friedrich, yet makes him skip hither and
thither, chiefly by threatening his victuals. Friedrich's main magazine
is now at Pardubitz, the extreme northeast angle of the parallelogram.
Parallelogram has one river in it, with the innumerable rocks and
brooks and quagmires, the river Sazawa; and on the north side, where are
Kuttenberg, Czaslau, Chotusitz, places again become important in
this business, it is bounded by another river, the Elbe. Intricate
manoeuvring there is here, for three weeks following: "old Traun an
admirable man!" thinks Friedrich, who ever after recognized Traun as his
Schoolmaster in the art of War. We mark here and there a date, and leave
it to readers.

"RADICZ, OCTOBER 21st-22d. At Radicz, a march to southwest of us, and on
our side of the Moldau, the Saxons, under Weissenfels, 20,000 effective,
join Prince Karl; which raises his force to 69,514 men, some 10,000 more
than Friedrich is master of. [Orlich, ii. 66.] Prospect of wintering
between the Luschnitz and the Sazawa there is now little; unless they
will fight us, and be beaten. Friedrich, from his inaccessible Camp of
Konopischt, manoeuvres, reconnoitres, in all directions, to produce
this result; but to no purpose. An Austrian Detachment did come, to look
after Beneschau and the Magazines there; but rapidly drew back again,
finding Konopischt on their road, and how matters were. Friedrich
will guard the door of this Sazawa-Elbe tract of Country; hope of the
Sazawa-Luschnitz tract has, in few days, fallen extinct. Here is
news come to Konopischt: our Three poor Garrisons, Budweis, Tabor,
Frauenberg, already all lost; guns and men, after defence to the
last cartridge,--in Frauenberg their water was cut off, it was
eight-and-forty hours of thirst at Frauenberg:--one way or other, they
are all Three gone; eight couriers galloping with message, 'Come away,'
were all picked up by the Pandours; so they stood, and were lost. 'Three
thousand fighting men gone, for the weak chance of saving three hundred
who were in hospital!' thinks Friedrich: War is not a school of the
weak pities. For the chance of ten, you lose a hundred and the ten too.
Sazawa-Elbe tract of country, let us vigilantly keep the door of that!

"SATURDAY, OCTOBER 24th, Friedrich out reconnoitring from Konopischt
discovers of a certainty that the whole Austrian-Saxon force is
now advaucing towards Beneschau, and will, this night, encamp at
Marschowitz, to southwest, only one march from us! On the instant
Friedrich hurries back; gets his Army on march thitherward, though the
late October sun is now past noon; off instantly; a stroke yonder will
perhaps be the cure of all. Such roads we had, says Friedrich, as never
Army travelled before: long after nightfall, we arrive near the Austrian
camp, bivouac as we can till daylight return. At the first streak of
day, Friedrich and his chief generals are on the heights with their
spy-glasses: Austrian Army sure enough; and there they have altered
their posture overnight (for Traun too has been awake); they lie now
opposite our RIGHT flank; 'on a scarped height, at the foot of which,
through swamps and quagmires, runs a muddy stream.' Unattackable on this
side: their right flank and foot are safe enough. Creep round and see
their left:--Nothing but copses, swampy intricacies! We may shoulder
arms again, and go back to Konopischt: no fight here! [_OEuvres
de Frederic,_ iii. 63, 64; Orlich, ii. 69.] Speaking of defensive
Campaigns, says Friedrich didactically, years afterwards, 'If such
situations are to answer the purpose intended, the front and flanks must
be equally strong, but the rear entirely open. Such, for instance,
are those heights which have an extensive front, and whose flanks are
covered by morasses:--as was Prince Karl's Camp at Marschowitz in the
year 1744, with its front covered by a stream, and the wings by deep
hollows; or that which we ourselves then occupied at Konopischt,--as you
well remember. [_Military Instructions_ (above cited), p. 44.]

"OCTOBER 26th-NOVEMBER 1st. The Sazawa-Luschnitz tract of Country is
quite lost, then; lost with damages: the question now is, Can we keep
the Sazawa-Elbe tract? For about three weeks more, Friedrich struggles
for that object; cannot compass that either. Want of horse-provender is
very great:--country entirely eaten, say the peasants, and not a truss
remaining. October 26th, Friedrich has to cross the Sazawa; we must quit
the door of that tract (hunger driving us), and fight for the interior
in detail. Traun gets to Beneschau in that cheap way; and now, in behalf
of Traun, the peasants find forage enough, being zealous for Queen and
creed. Pandours spread themselves all over this Sazawa-Elbe country;
endanger our subsistences, make our lives miserable. It is the old
story: Friedrich, famine and mud and misery of Pandours compelling,
has to retire northward, Elbe-ward, inch by inch; whither the Austrians
follow at a safe distance, and, in spite of all manoeuvring, cannot be
got to fight.

"Brave General Nassau, who much distinguishes himself in these
businesses, has (though Friedrich does not yet know it) dexterously
seized Kolin, westward in those Elbe parts,--ground that will be notable
in years coming. Important little feat of Nassau's; of which anon. On
the other hand, our Magazine at Pardubitz, eastward on the Elbe, is
not out of danger: Pandours and regulars 2,000 and odd, 'sixty of the
Pandour kind disguised as peasants leading hay-carts,' made an attempt
there lately; but were detected by the vigilant Colonel, and blown to
pieces, in the nick of time, some of them actually within the gate.
[ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 65.] Nay, a body of Austrian regulars were
in full march for Kolin lately, intending to get hold of the Elbe
itself at that point (midway between Prag and Pardubitz): but the prompt
General Nassau, as we remarked, had struck in before them; and now holds
Kolin;--though, for several days, Friedrich could not tell what had
become of Nassau, owing to the swarms of Pandours.

"Friedrich, standing with his back to Prag, which is fifty miles from
him, and rather in need of his support than able to give him any; and
drawing his meal from the uncertain distance, with Pandours hovering
round,--is in difficult case. While old Traun is kept luminous as
mid-day; the circumambient atmosphere of Pandours is tenebrific to
Friedrich, keeps him in perpetual midnight. He has to read his position
as with flashes of lightning, for most part. A heavy-laden, sorely
exasperated man; and must keep his haggard miseries strictly secret;
which I believe he does. Were Valori here, it is very possible he might
find the countenance FAROUCHE again; eyes gloomy, on damp November
mornings! Schwerin, in a huff, has gone home: Since your Majesty is
pleased to prefer his young Durchlaucht of Anhalt's advice, what can
an elderly servant (not without rheumatisms) do other?--'Well!' answers
Friedrich, not with eyes cheered by the phenomenon. The Elbe-Sazawa
tract, even this looks as if it would be hard to keep. A world very dark
for Friedrich, enveloped so by the ill chances and the Pandours. But
what help?

"From the French Camp far away, there comes, dated 17th October
(third week of their Siege of Freyburg), by way of help to Friedrich,
magnanimous promise: 'So soon as this Siege is done, which will be
speedily, though it is difficult, we propose to send fifty battalions
and a hundred squadrons,'"--say only 60,000 horse and foot (not a hoof
or toe of which ever got that length, on actually trying it),--"towards
Westphalia, to bring the Elector of Koln to reason [poor Kaiser's lanky
Brother, who cannot stand the French procedures, and has lately sold
himself, that is sold his troops, to England], and keep the King of
England and the Dutch in check,"--by way of solacement to your Majesty.
Will you indeed, you magnanimous Allies?--This was picked up by the
Pandours; and I know not but Friedrich was spared the useless pain of
reading it. [Orlich, ii. 73.]

"NOVEMBER 1st-9th: FRIEDRICH LOSES SAZAWA-ELBE COUNTRY TOO. On the first
day of November, here is a lightning-flash which reveals strange things
to Friedrich. Traun's late manoeuvrings, which have been so enigmatic,
to right and to left, upon Prag and other points, issue now in an
attempt towards Pardubitz; which reveals to Friedrich the intention
Traun has formed, of forcing him to choose one of those two places, and
let go the other. Formidable, fatal, thinks Friedrich; and yet admirable
on the part of Traun: 'a design beautiful and worthy of admiration.' If
we stay near Prag, what becomes of our communication with Silesia; what
becomes of Silesia itself? If we go towards Pardubitz, Prag and Bohmen
are lost! What to do? 'Despatch reinforcement to Pardubitz; thanks to
Nassau, the Kolin-Pardubitz road is ours!' That is done, Pardubitz saved
for the moment. Could we now get to Kuttenberg before the old Marshal,
his design were overset altogether. Alas, we cannot march at once, have
to wait a day for the bread. Forward, nevertheless; and again forward,
and again; three heavy marches in November weather: let us make a fourth
forced march, start to-morrow before dawn,--Kuttenberg above all things!
In vain; to-morrow, 4th November, there is such a fog, dark as London
itself, from six in the morning onwards, no starting till noon: and then
impossible, with all our efforts, to reach Kuttenberg. We have to halt
an eight miles short of it, in front of Kolin; and pitch tents there. On
the morrow, 5th November, Traun is found encamped, unattackable, between
us and our object; sits there, at his ease in a friendly Country, with
Pandour whirlpools flowing out and in; an irreducible case to Friedrich.
November 5th, and for three days more, Friedrich, to no purpose, tries
his utmost;--finds he will have to give up the Elbe-Sazawa region, like
the others. Monday, November 9th, Friedrich gathers himself at Kolin;
crosses the Elbe by Kolin Bridge, that day. Point after point of the
game going against him."

Kolin was, of course, attacked, that Monday evening, so soon as the main
Army crossed: but, so soon as the Army left, General Nassau had taken
his measures; and, with his great guns and his small, handled the
Pandours in a way that pleased us. [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 68.]
Thursday night following, they came back, with regular grenadiers to
support; under cloud of night, in great force, ruffian Trenck at the
head of them: a frightful phenomenon to weak nerves. But this also
Nassau treated in such a fiery fashion that it vanished without return;
three hundred dead left on the ground, and ruffian Trenck riding off
with his own crown broken,--beautiful indigo face streaking itself into
GINGHAM-pattern, for the moment!

Except Pardubitz, where also the due battalions are left, Friedrich now
holds no post south of the Elbe in this quarter; Elbe-Sazawa Tract is
gone like the others, to all appearance. And we must now say, Silesia
or Prag? Prince Leopold, Council-of-War being held on the matter, is for
keeping hold of Prag: "Pity to lose all the excellent siege-artillery we
brought thither," says he. True, too true; an ill-managed business
that of Prag! thinks Friedrich sadly to himself: but what is Prag and
artillery, compared to Silesia? Parthian retreat into Silesia; and
let Prag and the artillery go: that, to Friedrich, is clearly the sure
course. Or perhaps the fatal alternative will not actually arrive? So
long as Pardubitz and Kolin hold; and we have the Elbe for barrier?
Truth is, Prince Karl has himself written to Court that, having now
pushed his Enemy fairly over the Elbe, and winter being come with its
sleets and slushes, ruinous to troops that have been so marched about,
the Campaign ought to end;--nay, his own young Wife is in perilous
interesting circumstances, and the poor Prince wishes to be home. To
which, however, it is again understood, Maria Theresa has emphatically
answered, "No,--finish first!"

NOVEMBER 9th-19th: WE DEFEND THE ELBE RIVER. Friedrich has posted
himself on the north shore of the Elbe, from Pardubitz to the other side
of Kolin; means to defend that side of the River, where go the Silesian
roads. At Bohdenetz, short way across from Pardubitz, he himself is;
Prince Leopold is near Kolin: thirty miles of river-bank to dispute.
The controversy lasts ten days; ends in ELBE-TEINITZ, a celebrated
"passage," in Books and otherwise. Friedrich is in shaggy, intricate
country; no want of dingles, woods and quagmires; now and then pleasant
places too,--here is Kladrup for example, where our Father came three
hundred miles to dine with the Kaiser once. The grooms and colts are
all off at present; Father and Kaiser are off; and much is changed since
then. Grim tussle of War now; sleety winter, and the Giant Mountains in
the distance getting on their white hoods! Friedrich doubtless has
his thoughts as he rides up and down, in sight of Kladrup, among other
places, settling many things; but what his thoughts were, he is careful
not to say except where necessary. Much is to be looked after, in this
River controversy of thirty miles. Detachments lie, at intervals, all
the way; and mounted sentries, a sentry every five miles, patrol the
River-bank; vigilant, we hope, as lynxes. Nothing can cross but alarm
will be given, and by degrees the whole Prussian force be upon it. This
is the Circle of Konigsgratz, this that now lies to rear; and happily
there are a few Hussites in it, not utterly indisposed to do a little
spying for us, and bring a glimmering of intelligence, now and then.

It is now the second week that Frietrich has lain so, with his mounted
patrols in motion, with his Hussite spies; guarding Argus-like this
thirty miles of River; and the Austrians attempt nothing, or nothing
with effect. If the Austrians go home to their winter-quarters, he hopes
to issue from Kolin again before Spring, and to sweep the Elbe-Sazawa
Tract clear of them, after all. Maria Theresa having answered No, it is
likely the Austrians will try to get across: Be vigilant therefore,
ye mounted sentries. Or will they perhaps make an attempt on Prag?
Einsiedel, who has no garrison of the least adequacy, apprises us That
"in all the villages round Prag people are busy making ladders,"--what
can that mean? Friedrich has learned, by intercepted letters, that
something great is to be done on Wednesday, 18th: he sends Rothenburg
with reinforcement to Einsiedel, lest a scalade of Prag should be on
the cards. Rothenburg is right welcome in the lines of Prag, though with
reinforcement still ineffectual; but it is not Prag that is meant, nor
is Wednesday the day. Through Wednesday, Friedrich, all eye and ear,
could observe nothing: much marching to and fro on the Austrian side of
the River; but apparently it comes to nothing? The mounted patrols had
better be vigilant, however.

On the morrow, 5 A.M., what is this that is going on? Audible booming of
cannon, of musketry and battle, echoing through the woods, penetrates to
Friedrich's quarters at Bohdenetz in the Pardubitz region: Attack upon
Kolin, Nassau defending himself there? Out swift scouts, and see! Many
scouts gallop out; but none comes back. Friedrich, for hours, has to
remain uncertain; can only hope Nassau will defend himself. Boom go the
distant volleyings; no scout comes back. And it is not Nassau or Kolin;
it is something worse: very glorious for Prussian valor, but ruinous to
this Campaign.

The Austrians, at 2 o'clock this morning, Austrians and Saxons, came in
great force, in dead silence, to the south brink of the River, opposite
a place called Teinitz (Elbe-Teinitz), ten miles east of Kolin; that
was the fruit of their marching yesterday. They sat there forbidden to
speak, to smoke tobacco or do anything but breathe, till all was ready;
till pontoons, cannons had come up, and some gleam of dawn had broken.
At the first gleam of dawn, as they are shoving down their pontoon
boats, there comes a "WER-DA, Who goes?" from our Prussian patrol across
the River. Receiving no answer, he fires; and is himself shot down. One
Wedell, Wedell and Ziethen, who keep watch in this part, start instantly
at sound of these shots; and make a dreadful day of it for these
invasive Saxon and Austrian multitudes. Naturally, too, they send off
scouts, galloping for more help, to the right and to the left. But that
avails not. Wild doggery of Pandours, it would seem, have already swum
or waded the River, above Teinitz and below:--"Want of vigilance!" barks
Friedrich impatiently: but such a doggery is difficult to watch with
effect. At any rate, to the right and to the left, the woods are already
beset with Pandours; every scout sent out is killed: and to east or to
west there comes no news but an echoing of musketry, a boom of distant
cannon. [Orlich, ii. 82-85.] Saxon-Austrian battalions, four or five,
with unlimited artillery going, VERSUS Wedell's one battalion, with
musketry and Ziethen's hussars: it is fearful odds. The Prussians stand
to it like heroes; doggedly, for four hours, continue the
dispute,--till it is fairly desperate; "two bridges of the enemy's now
finished;"--whereupon they manoeuvre off, with Parthian or Prussian
countenance, into the woods, safe, towards Kolin; "despatching definite
news to Friedrich, which does arrive about 11 A.M., and sets him at once
on new measures."

This is a great feat in the Prussian military annals; for which, sad
as the news was, Wedell got the name of Leonidas attached to him by
Friedrich himself. And indeed it is a gallant passage of war; "Forcing
of the Elbe at Teinitz;" of which I could give two Narratives, one from
the Prussian, and one from the Saxon side; [Seyfarth, _Beylage,_ i.
595-598; _Helden-Geschichte,_  ii. 1175-1181.] didactic, admonitory
to the military mind, nay to the civic reader that has sympathy with
heroisms, with work done manfully, and terror and danger and difficulty
well trampled under foot. Leonidas Wedell has an admirable silence, too;
and Ziethen's lazily hanging under-lip is in its old attitude again, now
that the spasm is over. "WAS THUTS? They are across, without a doubt. We
would have helped it, and could not. Steady!"--



FRIEDRICH'S RETREAT; ESPECIALLY EINSIEDEL'S FROM PRAG.

Seeing, then, that they are fairly over, Friedrich, with a creditable
veracity of mind, sees also that the game is done; and that same
night he begins manoeuvring towards Silesia, lest far more be lost by
continuing the play. One column, under Leopold the Young Dessauer, goes
through Glatz, takes the Magazine of Pardubitz along with it: good to go
in several columns, the enemy will less know which to chase. Friedrich,
with another column, will wait for Nassau about Konigsgratz, then go by
the more westerly road, through Nachod and the Pass of Braunau. Nassau,
who is to get across from Kolin, and join us northwards, has due
rendezvous appointed him in the Konigsgratz region. Einsiedel, in Prag,
is to spike his guns, since he cannot carry them; blow up his
bastions, and the like; and get away with all discretion and all
diligence,--northwestward first, to Leitmeritz, where our magazines are;
there to leave his heavier goods, and make eastward towards Friedland,
and across the "Silesian Combs" by what Passes he can. Will have
a difficult operation; but must stand to it. And speed; steady,
simultaneous, regular, unresting velocity; that is the word for all. And
so it is done,--though with difficulty, on the part of poor Einsiedel
for one. It was Thursday, 19th November, when the Austrians got across
the Elbe: on Monday, 23d, the Prussian rendezvousings are completed; and
Friedrich's column, and the Glatz one under Leopold, are both on march;
infinite baggage-wagons groaning orderly along ("sick-wagons well
ahead," and the like precautions and arrangements), on both these
highways for Silesia: and before the week ends, Thursday, 26th, even
Einsiedel is under way. Let us give something of poor Einsiedel,
whose disasters made considerable noise in the world, that Winter and
afterwards.

"The two main columns were not much molested; that which went by Glatz,
under Leopold, was not pursued at all. On the rear of Friedrich's own
column, going towards Braunau, all the way to Nachod or beyond, there
hung the usual doggery of Pandours, which required whipping off from
time to time; but in the defiles and difficult places due precaution was
taken, and they did little real damage. Truchsess von Waldburg [our old
friend of the Spartan feat near Austerlitz in the MORAVIAN-FORAY time,
whom we have known in London society as Prussian Envoy in bygone years]
was in one of the divisions of this column; and one day, at a village
where there was a little river to cross (river Mietau, Konigsgratz
branch of the Elbe), got provoked injudiciously into fighting with
a body of these people. Intent not on whipping them merely, but on
whipping them to death, Truchsess had already lost some forty men, and
the business with such crowds of them was getting hot; when, all at
once a loud squeaking of pigs was heard in the village,"--apprehensive
swineherd hastily penning his pigs belike, and some pig refractory;--"at
sound of which, the Pandour multitude suddenly pauses, quits fighting,
and, struck by a new enthusiasm, rushes wholly into the village; leaving
Truchsess, in a tragi-comic humor, victorious, but half ashamed
of himself. [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 73.] In the beginning of
December, Friedrich's column reached home, by Braunau through the
Mountains, the same way part of it had come in August; not quite so
brilliant in equipment now as then.

"It was upon Einsiedel's poor Garrison, leaving Prag in such haste, that
the real stress of the retreat fell; its difficulties great indeed, and
its losses great. Einsiedel did what was possible; but all things are
not possible on a week's warning. He spiked great guns, shook endless
hundredweights of powder, and 10,000 stand of arms, into the River;
he requisitioned horses, oxen, without number; put mines under the
bastions, almost none of which went off with effect. He kept Prag
accurately shut, the Praguers accurately in the dark; took his measures
prudently; and labored night and day. One measure I note of him:
stringent Proclamation to the inhabitants of Prag, 'Provision yourselves
for three months; nothing but starvation ahead otherwise.' Alas, we
are to stand a fourth siege, then? say the Praguers. But where are
provisions to be had? At such and such places; from the Royal Magazines
only, if you bring a certificate and ready money! Whereby Einsiedel
got delivered of his meal-magazine, for one thing. But his difficulties
otherwise were immense.

"On the Thursday morning, 26th November, 1744, he marched. His wagons
had begun the night before; and went all night, rumbling continuous
(Anonymous of Prag [Second "LETTER from a Citizen, &c." (date, 27th
November, see supra, p. 348), in _Helden-Geschichte,_  ii. 1181-1188.]
hearing them well), through the Karlthor, northwest gate of Prag, across
the Moldau Rridge. All night across that bridge,--Leitmeritz road, great
road to the northwest:--followed finally by the march of horse and foot.
But news had already fled abroad. Five hundred Pandours were in the
City, backed by the Butchers' lads and other riotous GESINDEL, before
the rear-guard got away. Sad tugging and wriggling in consequence, much
firing from windows, and uproarious chaos;--so that Rothenburg had at
last to remount a couple of guns, and blow it off with case-shot. A
drilled Prussian rear-guard struggling, with stern composure, through a
real bit of burning chaos. With effect, though not without difficulty.
Here is the scene on the Noldau Bridge, and past that high Hradschin
[Old Palace of the Bohemian Kings (pronounce RADsheen); one of the
steepest Royal Sites in the world.] mass of buildings; all Prag, not the
Hradschin only, struggling to give us fatal farewell if it durst. River
is covered with Pandours firing out of boats; Bridge encumbered to
impassability by forsaken wagons, the drivers of which had cut traces
and run; shot comes overhead from the Hradschin on our left, much shot,
infinite tumult all round; thoroughfare impossible for two-wheeled
vehicle, or men in rank. 'Halt!' cries Colonel Brandes, who has charge
of the thing; divides them in three: 'First one party, deal with these
river-boats, that Pandour doggery; second party, pull these stray wagons
to right and left, making the way clear; third party, drag our
own wagons forward, shoulder to shaft, and yoke them out of
shot-range;--you, Captain Carlowitz,' and calls twenty volunteers to go
with Carlowitz, and drag their own cannon, 'step you forward, keep the
gate of that Hradschin till we all pass!' In this manner, rapid, hard of
stroke, clear-headed and with stern regularity, drilled talent gets the
burning Nessus'-shirt wriggled off; and tramps successfully forth with
its baggages. About 11 A.M., this rearguard of Brandes's did; should
have been at seven,--right well that it could be at all.

"Einsiedel, after this, got tolerably well to Leitmeritz; left his heavy
baggage there; then turned at an acute angle right eastward, towards the
Silesian Combs, as ordered: still a good seventy miles to do, and the
weather getting snowy and the days towards their shortest. Worse still;
old Weissenfels, now in Prag with his Saxons, is aware that Einsiedel,
before ending, will touch on a wild high-lying corner of the Lausitz
which is Saxon Country; and thitherward Weissenfels has despatched
Chevalier de Saxe (in plenty of time, November 29th), with horse and
foot, to waylay Einsiedel, and block the entrance of the Silesian
Mountains for him. Whereupon, in the latter end of his long march,
and almost within sight of home, ensues the hardest brush of all for
Einsiedel. And, in the desolation of that rugged Hill country of the
Lausitz, 'HOCHWALD (Upper Weld),' twenty or more miles from Bohemian
Friedland, from his entrance on the Mountain Barrier and Silesian Combs,
there are scenes--which gave rise to a Court-Martial before long.
For unexpectedly, on the winter afternoon (December 9th), Einsiedel,
struggling among the snows and pathless Hills, comes upon Chevalier de
Saxe and his Saxon Detachment,--intrenched with trees, snow-redoubts,
and a hollow bog dividing us; plainly unassailable;--and stands there,
without covering, without 'food, fire, or salt,' says one Eye-witness,
'for the space of fourteen hours.' Gazing gloomily into it, exchanging a
few shots, uncertain what more to do; the much-dubitating Einsiedel. 'At
which the men were so disgusted and enraged, they deserted [the foreign
part of them, I fancy] in groups at a time,' says the above
Eye-witness. Not to think what became of the equipments, baggage-wagons,
sick-wagons:--too evident Einsiedel's loss, in all kinds, was very
considerable. Nassau, despatched by Leopold out of Glatz, from the other
side of the Combs, is marching to help Einsiedel;--who knows, at this
moment, where or whitherward? For the peasants are all against us;
our very guides desert, and become spies. 'Push to the left, over the
Hochwald top, must not we?' thinks Einsiedel: 'that is Lausitz, a Saxon
Country; and Saxony, though the Saxons stand intrenched here, with the
knife at our throat, are not at war with us, oh no, only allies of her
Majesty of Hungary, and neutral otherwise!' And here, it is too clear,
the Chevalier de Saxe stands intrenched behind his trees and snow; and
it is the fourteenth hour, men deserting by the hundred, without fire
and without salt; and Nassau is coming,--God knows by what road!

"Einsiedel pushes to the left, the Hochwald way; finds, in the Hochwald
too, a Saxon Commandant waiting him, with arms strictly shouldered.
'And we cannot pass through this moor skirt of Lausitz, say you, then?'
'Unarmed, yes; your muskets can come in wagons after you,' replies the
Saxon Commandant of Lausitz. 'Thousand thanks, Herr Commandant; but we
will not give you all that trouble,' answer Einsiedel and his Prussians;
'and march on, overwhelming him with politenesses,' says Friedrich;--the
approach of Nassau, above all, being a stringent civility. Of course,
despatch is very requisite to Einsiedel; the Chevalier, with his force,
being still within hail. The Prussians march all night, with pitch-links
flaring,--nights (I think) of the 13th-15th December, 1744, up among the
highlands there, rugged buttresses of the Silesian Combs: a sight enough
to astonish Rubezahl, if he happened to be out! As good chance would
have it, Nassau and Einsiedel, by preconcert, partly by lucky guess of
their own, were hurrying by the same road: three heaven-rending cheers
(December 16th) when we get sight of Nassau; and find that here is land!
December 16th, we are across,--by Ruckersdorf, not far from Friedland
(Bohmisch Friedland, not the Silesian town of that name, once
Wallenstein's);--and rejoice now to look back on labor done."
[ _Helden-Geschichte,_  ii. 1181-1190, 1191-1194;--Feldzuge,--i.
278-280.]

These were intricate strange scenes, much talked of at the time:
Rothenburg, ugly Walrave, Hacke, and other known figures, concerned in
them. Scenes in which Friedrich is not well informed; who much blames
Einsiedel, as he is apt to do the unsuccessful. Accounts exist, both
from the Prussian and from the Saxon side, decipherable with industry;
not now worth deciphering to English readers. Only that final scene
of the pitch-links, the night before meeting with Nassau, dwells
voluntarily in one's memory. And is the farewell of Einsiedel withal.
Friedrich blames him to the last: though a Court-Martial had sat on his
case, some months after, and honorably acquitted him. Good solid, silent
Einsiedel;--and in some months more, he went to a still higher court,
got still stricter justice: I do not hear expressly that it was the
winter marches, or strain of mind; but he died in 1745; and that
flare of pitch-links in Rubezahl's country is the last scene of him
to us,--and the end of Friedrich's unfortunate First Expedition in the
Second Silesian War.

"Foiled, ultimately, then, on every point; a totally ill-ordered game on
our part! Evidently we, for our part, have been altogether in the wrong,
in various essential particulars. Amendment, that and no other, is the
word now. Let us take the scathe and the scorn candidly home to us;--and
try to prepare for doing better. The world will crow over us. Well, the
world knows little about it; the world, if it did know, would be partly
in the right!"--Wise is he who, when beaten, learns the reasons of it,
and alters these. This wisdom, it must be owned, is Friedrich's; and
much distinguishes him among generals and men. Veracity of mind, as
I say, loyal eyesight superior to sophistries; noble incapacity of
self-delusion, the root of all good qualities in man. His epilogue to
this Campaign is remarkable;--too long for quoting here, except the
first word of it and the last:--

"No General committed more faults than did the King in this Campaign....
The conduct of M. de Traun is a model of perfection, which every soldier
that loves his business ought to study, and try to imitate, if he have
the talent. The king has himself admitted that he regarded this Campaign
as his school in the Art of War, and M. de Traun as his teacher." But
what shall we say? "Bad is often better for Princes than good;--and
instead of intoxicating them with presumption, renders them circumspect
and modest." [_OEuvres,_ iii.76, 77.] Let us still hope!--



Chapter V.--FRIEDRICH, UNDER DIFFICULTIES, PREPARES FOR A NEW CAMPAIGN.

To the Court of Vienna, especially to the Hungarian Majesty, this
wonderful reconquest of Bohemia, without battle fought,--or any cause
assignable but Traun's excellent manoeuvring and Friedrich's imprudences
and trust in the French,--was a thing of heavenly miracle; blessed omen
that Providence had vouchsafed to her prayers the recovery of Silesia
itself. All the world was crowing over Friedrich: but her Majesty of
Hungary's views had risen to a clearly higher pitch of exultation
and triumphant hope, terrestrial and celestial, than any other living
person's. "Silesia back again," that was now the hope and resolution of
her Majesty's high heart: "My wicked neighbor shall be driven out, and
smart dear for the ill he has done; Heaven so wills it!" "Very little
uplifts the Austrians," says Valori; which is true, under such a Queen;
"and yet there is nothing that can crush them altogether down," adds he.

No sooner is Bohemia cleared of Friedrich, than Maria, winter as it is,
orders that there be, through the Giant-Mountains, vigorous assault upon
Silesia. Highland snows and ices, what are these to Pandour people,
who, at their first entrance on the scene of History, "crossed the
Palus-Maeotis itself [Father of Quagmires, so to speak] in a frozen
state," and were sufficiently accommodated each in his own dirty
sheepskin? "Prosecute the King of Prussia," ordered she; "take your
winter-quarters in Silesia!"--and Traun, in spite of the advanced
season, and prior labors and hardships, had to try, from the
southwestern Bohemian side, what he could do; while a new Insurrection,
coming through the Jablunka, spread itself over the southeast and east.
Seriously invasive multitudes; which were an unpleasant surprise to
Friedrich; and did, as we shall see, require to be smitten back again,
and re-smitten; making a very troublesome winter to the Prussians and
themselves; but by no means getting winter-quarters, as they once hoped.

In a like sense, Maria Theresa had already (December 2d) sent forth
her Manifesto or Patent, solemnly apprising her ever-faithful Silesian
Populations, "That the Treaty of Breslau, not by her fault, is broken;
palpably a Treaty no longer. That they, accordingly, are absolved
from all oaths and allegiance to the King of Prussia; and shall hold
themselves in readiness to swear anew to her Majesty, which will be
a great comfort to such faithful creatures; suffering, as her Majesty
explains to them that they have done, under Prussian tyranny for these
two years past. Immediate dead-lift effort there shall be; that is
certain: and 'the Almighty God assisting, who does not leave such
injustices unpunished, We have the fixed Christian hope, Omnipotence
blessing our arms, of almost immediately (EHESTENS) delivering you from
this temporary Bondage (BISHERIGEN JOCH).' You can pray, in the mean
while, for the success of her Majesty's arms; good fighting, aided by
prayer, in a Cause clearly Heaven's, will now, to appearance, bring
matters swiftly round again, to the astonishment and confusion of
bad men." [In _Helden-Geschichte,_  ii. 1194-1198; Ib. 1201-1206, is
Friedrich's Answer, "19th December, 1744."]

These are her Majesty's views; intensely true, I doubt not, to her
devout heart. Robinson and the English seem not to be enthusiastic in
that direction; as indeed how can they? They would fain be tender of
Silesia, which they have guaranteed; fain, now and afterwards, restrain
her Majesty from driving at such a pace down hill: but the declivity is
so encouraging, her Majesty is not to be restrained, and goes faster
and faster for the time being. And indeed, under less devout forms, the
general impression, among Pragmatic people, Saxon, Austrian, British
even, was, That Friedrich had pretty much ruined himself, and deserved
to do so; that this of his being mere "Auxiliary" to a Kaiser in
distress was an untenable pretext, now justly fallen bankrupt upon him.
The evident fact, That he had by his "Frankfurt Union," and struggles
about "union," reopened the door for French tribulations and
rough-ridings in the Reich, was universally distasteful; all chance of
a "general union of German Princes, in aid of their Kaiser," was extinct
for the present.

Friedrich's rapidity had served him ill with the Public, in this as
in some other instances! Friedrich, contemplating his situation, not
self-delusively, but with the candor of real remorse, was by no means
yet aware how very bad it was. For six months coming, partly as existing
facts better disclosed themselves, as France, Saxony and others showed
what spirit they were of; partly as new sinister events and facts
arrived one after the other,--his outlook continued to darken and
darken, till it had become very dark indeed. There is perennially the
great comfort, immense if you can manage it, of making front against
misfortune; of looking it frankly in the face, and doing with a
resolution, hour by hour, your own utmost against it. Friedrich never
lacked that comfort; and was not heard complaining. But from December
13th, 1744, when he hastened home to Berlin, under such aspects, till
June 4th, 1745, when aspects suddenly changed, are probably the worst
six months Friedrich had yet had in the world. During which, his affairs
all threatening to break down about him, he himself, behooving to stand
firm if the worst was not to realize itself, had to draw largely on
what silent courage, or private inexpugnability of mind, was in him,--a
larger instalment of that royal quality (as I compute) than the Fates
had ever hitherto demanded of him. Ever hitherto; though perhaps nothing
like the largest of all, which they had upon their Books for him, at a
farther stage! As will be seen. For he was greatly drawn upon in that
way, in his time. And he paid always; no man in his Century so well; few
men, in any Century, better. As perhaps readers may be led to guess or
acknowledge, on surveying and considering. To see, and sympathetically
recognize, cannot be expected of modern readers, in the present great
distance, and changed conditions of men and things.

Friedrich, after despatching Nassau to cut out Einsiedel, had delivered
the Silesian Army to the Old Dessauer, who is to command in chief during
Winter; and had then hastened to Berlin,--many things there urgently
requiring his presence; preparations, reparations, not to speak of
diplomacies, and what was the heaviest item of all, new finance for the
coming exertions. In Schweidnitz, on Leopold's appearance, there had
been an interview, due consultings, orderings; which done, Friedrich at
once took the road; and was at Berlin, Monday, December 14th,--precisely
in the time while Nassau and Einsiedel were marching with torchlights in
Rubezahl's Country, and near ending their difficult enterprise better or
worse.

Friedrich, fastening eagerly on Home business, is astonished and
provoked to learn that the Austrians, not content with pushing him
out of Bohmen, are themselves pushing into Schlesien,--so Old Leopold
reports, with increasing emphasis day by day; to whom Friedrich sends
impatient order: Hurl them out again; gather what force you need, ten
thousand, or were it twenty or thirty thousand, and be immediate about
it; "I will as soon be pitched (HERAUSGESCHMISSEN) out of the Mark of
Brandenburg as out of Schlesien:" no delay, I tell you! And as the Old
Dessauer still explains that the ten or fifteen thousand he needs are
actually assembling, and cannot be got on march quite in a moment,
Friedrich dashes away his incipient Berlin Operations; will go himself
and do it. Haggle no more, you tedious Old Dessauer:--

BERLIN, "19th DECEMBER," 1744. "On the 21st [Monday, one week after
my arriving], I leave Berlin, and mean to be at Neisse on the 24th at
latest. Your Serenity will in the interim make out the Order-of-Battle
[which is also Order-of-March] for what regiments are come in. For I
will, on the 25th, without delay, cross the Neisse, and attack those
people, cost what it may,--to chase them out of Schlesien and Glatz, and
follow them so far as possible. Your Serenity will therefore take your
measures, and provide everything, so far as in this short time you can,
that the project may be executable the moment I arrive." [Friedrich to
the Old Dessauer (_Orlich,_ ii. 356).]

And rushed off accordingly, in a somewhat flamy humor; but at
Schweidnitz, where the Old Dessauer met him again, became convinced that
the matter was weightier than he thought; not one of Tolpatchery alone,
but had Traun himself in it. Upon which Friedrich candidly drew bridle;
hastened back, and, with a loss of four days, was at his Potsdam Affairs
again. To which he stuck henceforth, ardently, and I think rather with
increase of gloom, though without spurt of impatience farther, for three
months to come. Before his return,--nay, had he known, it was the
night before he went away,--a strange little thing had happened in the
opposite or Western parts: surprising accident to Marechal de Belleisle;
which now lies waiting his immediate consideration. But let us finish
Silesia first.



OLD DESSAUER REPELS THE SILESIAN INVASION (Winter, 1744-45).

"This Silesian Affair includes due inroad of Pandours; or indeed
two inroads, southwest and southeast; and in the southwest, or Traun
quarter, regulars are the main element of it. Traun, 20,000 strong, PLUS
stormy-enough Pandour ACCOMPANIMENT, is by this time through into Glatz;
in three columns;--is master of all Glatz, except the Rock-Fortress
itself; and has spread himself, right and left, along the Neisse River,
and from the southwest northwards, in a skilful and dangerous manner. In
concert with whom, far to the east, are Pandour whirlwinds on their own
footing (brand-new 'Insurrection' of them, got thus far) starting from
Olmutz and Brunn; scouring that eastern country, as far as Namslau
northward [a place we were at the taking of, in old Brieg times]; much
more, infesting the Mountains of the South. A rather serious thing; with
Traun for general manager of it."

With Traun, we say: poor Prince Karl is off, weeks ago; on the saddest
of errands. His beautiful young Wife,--Hungarian Majesty's one Sister,
Vice-Regents of the Netherlands he and she, conspicuous among the bright
couples of the world,--she had a bad lying-in (child still-born), while
those grand Moldau Operations went on; has been ill, poor lady, ever
since; and, at Brussels, on December 16th, she herself lies dead, Prince
Karl weeping over her and the days that will not return. Prince Karl's
felicities, private and public, had been at their zenith lately, which
was very high indeed; but go on declining from this day. Never more the
Happiest of Husbands (did not wed again at all); still less the Greatest
of Captains, equal or superior to Caesar in the Gazetteer judgment, with
distracted EULOGIES, BIOGRAPHIES and such like filling the air: before
long, a War-Captain of quite moderate renown; which we shall see
sink gradually into no renown at all, and even (unjustly) into MINUS
quantities, before all end. A mad world, my masters!

"Between Traun on the southwest hand, and his Pandours on the southeast,
the small Prussian posts have all been driven in upon Troppau-Jagerndorf
region; more and more narrowed there;--and, in fine (two days before
this new Interview of Leopold and the impatient King at Schweidnitz),
have had to quit the Troppau-Jagerndorf position; to quit the Hills
altogether, and are now in full march towards Brieg. Of which march I
should say nothing, were it not that Marwitz, Father of Wilhelmina's
giggling Marmitzes, commanded;--and came by his death in the course of
it; though our Wilhelmina is not now there, pen in hand, to tell us
what the effects at Baireuth were. Marwitz had been left for dead on
the Field of Mollwitz; lay so all night, but was nursed to some kind
of strength again by those giggling young women; and came back to
Schlesien, to posts of chief trust, for the last year or two,--was
guarding the Mountains, and even invading Mahren, during the late
Campaign;--but saw himself reduced latterly to Jagerndorf and Troppau;
and had even to retreat out of these. And in the whirlpool of hurries
thereupon,--how is not very clear; by apoplexy, say some; by accidental
pistol from a servant of his own; in actual skirmish with Pandours,--too
certainly, one way or the other, on December 23d (just during that
second Interview at Schweidnitz), brave old Marwitz did suddenly sink
dead, and is ended. [_Helden-Geschichte,_ ii. 1201.] Even so, ye poor
giggling creatures, and your loud weeping will not mend it at all!

"Friedrich, looking candidly into these phenomena, could not but see
that: what with Tolpatcheries, what with Traun's 20,000 regulars, and
the whole Army at their back, his Silesian Border is girt in by a very
considerable inroad of Austrians,--huge Chain of them, in horse-shoe
form, 300 miles long, pressing in; from beyond Glatz and Landshut, round
by the southern Mountains, and up eastward again as far as Namslau,
nothing but war whirlwinds in regular or irregular form, in the centre
of them Traun;--and that the Old Dessauer really must have time to gird
himself for dealing with Traun and them.

"It was not till January 9th that Old Leopold, 25,000 strong, equipped
to his mind, which was a difficult matter, crossed the Neisse River;
and marched direct upon Traun, with Ziethen charging ahead. Actually
marched; after which the main wrestle was done in a week. January 16th,
Old Leopold got to Jagerndorf; found the actual Traun concentrated at
Jagerndorf; and drew up, to be ready for assault to-morrow morning,--had
not Traun, candidly computing, judged it better to glide wholly away in
the night-time, diligently towards Mahren, breaking the bridges behind
him. And so, in effect, to give up the Silesian Invasion for this time.
After which, though there remained a good deal of rough tussling with
Pandour details, and some rugged exploits of fight, there is--except
that of Lehwald in clearing of Glatz--nothing farther that we can afford
to speak of. Lehwald's exploit, Lehwald VERSUS Wallis (same Wallis who
defended Glogau long since), which came to be talked of, and got name
and date, 'Action of Habelschwert, February 14th,' something almost like
a pitched fight on the small scale, is to the following effect:--

"PLOMNITZ, NEAR HABELSCHWERT, 14th FEBRUARY, 1745. Old General Lehwald,
marching in the hollow ground near Habelschwert (hollow of the young
Neisse River, twenty miles south of Glatz), with intent to cut that
Country free; the Enemy, whom he is in search of, appears in great
force,--posted on the uphill ground ahead, half-frozen difficult stream
in front of them, cannon on flank, Pandour multitude in woods; all
things betokening inexpugnability on the part of the Enemy. So that
Lehwald has to take his measures; study well where the vital point is,
the root of that extensive Austrian junglery, and cut in upon the same.
By considerable fire of effort, the uphill ground, half-frozen stream,
sylvan Pandours, cannon-batteries, and what inexpugnabilities there may
be, are subdued; Austrian wide junglery, the root of it slit asunder
rolls homeward simultaneously, not too fast: nay it halted, and
re-ranked itself twice over, finding woods and quaggy runlets to its
mind; but was always slit out again, disrooted, and finally tumbled
home, having had enough. 'Wenzel Wallis,' Friedrich asserts with due
scorn, 'was all this while in a Chapel; praying ardently,' to St.
Vitus, or one knows not whom; 'without effect; till they shouted to him,
"Beaten, Sir! Off, or you are lost!" upon which he sprang to saddle, and
spurred with both heels (PIQUA DES DEUX).' [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii.
79. 80.] That was the feat of Lehwald, clearing the Glatz Country with
one good cut: a skilful Captain; now getting decidedly oldish, close on
sixty; whom we shall meet again a dozen years hence, still in harness.

"The old Serene Highness himself, face the color of gun-powder, and
bluer in the winter frost, went rushing far and wide in an open vehicle,
which he called his 'cart;' pushing out detachments, supervising
everything; wheeling hither and thither as needful; sweeping out the
Pandour world, and keeping it out: not much of fighting needed, but 'a
great deal of marching [murmurs Friedrich], which in winter is as bad,
and wears down the force of the battalions.' Of all which we give no
detail: sufficient to fancy, in this manner, the Old Dessauer flapping
his wide military wings in the faces of the Pandour hordes, with here
and there a hard twitch from beak or claws; tolerably keeping down the
Pandour interest all Winter. His sons, Leopold and Dietrich, were under
him, occasionally beside him; the Junior Leopold so worn down with
feverish gout he could hardly sit on horseback at all, while old
Papa went tearing about in his cart at that rate." [_Unternehmung in
Ober-Schlesien, unter dem Fursten Leopold von Anhalt-Dessau, im Januar
und Februar,_ 1745 (Seyfarth, _Beylage,_ i. 141-152); Stenzel, iv. 232;
&c.]

There was, on the 21st of February, TE-DEUM sung in the churches of
Berlin "for the Deliverance of Silesia from Invasion." Not that even
yet the Pandours would be quite quiet, or allow Old Leopold to quit his
cart; far from it. And they returned in such increased and
tempestuous state, as will again require mention, with the earliest
Spring:--precursors to a second, far more serious and deadly "Invasion
of Silesia;" for which it hangs yet on the balance whether there will be
a TE-DEUM or a MISERERE to sing!

Hungarian Majesty, disappointed of Silesia,--which, it seems, is not to
be had "all at once (EHESTENS)," in the form of miracle,--makes amends
by a rush upon Seckendorf and Bavaria; attacks Seckendorf furiously
("Bathyani pressing up the Donau Valley, with Browne on one hand, and
Barenklau on the other") in midwinter; and makes a terrible hand of him;
reducing his "Reconquest of Bavaria" to nothing again, nay to less. Of
which in due time.



THE FRENCH FULLY INTEND TO BEHAVE BETTER NEXT SEASON TO FRIEDRICH AND
THEIR GERMAN ALLIES;--BUT ARE PREVENTED BY VARIOUS ACCIDENTS (November,
1744-April, 1745; April-August, 1745).

It is not divine miracle, Friedrich knows well, that has lost him his
late Bohemian Conquests without battle fought: it was rash choosing of
a plan inexecutable without French co-operation,--culpable blindness to
the chance that France would break its promises, and not co-operate. Had
your Majesty forgotten the Joint-Stock Principle, then? His Majesty has
sorrowful cause to remember it, from this time, on a still larger scale!

Reflections, indignant or exculpatory, on the conduct of the French in
this Business are useless to Friedrich, and to us. The performance, on
their part, has been nearly the worst;--though their intentions,
while the Austrian Dragon had them by the throat, were doubtless
enthusiastically good! But, the big Austrian Dragon being jerked away
from Elsass, by Friedrich's treading on his tail, 500 miles off, they
were charmed, quite into new enthusiasm, to be rid of said Dragon: and,
instead of chasing HIM according to bargain, took to destroying his DEN,
that he might be harmless thenceforth. Freyburg is a captured Town, to
the joy and glory of admiring France; and Friedrich's Campaign has gone
the road we see! The Freyburg Illuminations having burnt out,
there might rise, in the triumphant mind, some thought of Friedrich
again,--perhaps almost of a remorseful nature? Certain it is, the French
intentions are now again magnanimous, more so than ever; coupled now
with some attempts at fulfilment, too; which obliges us to mention them
here. They were still a matter of important hope to Friedrich; hope
which did not quite go out till August coming. Though, alas, it did then
go out, in gusts of indignation on Friedrich's part! And as the whole of
these magnanimous French intentions, latter like former, again came to
zero, we are interested only in rendering them conceivable to readers
for Friedrich's sake,--with the more brevity, the better for everybody.
Two grand French Attempts there were; listen, on the threshold, a
little:--

... "It is certain the French intend gloriously; regardless of expense.
They are dismantling Freyburg, to render it harmless henceforth. But,
withal, in answer to the poor Kaiser's shrieks, they have sent Segur
[our old Linz friend], with 12,000, to assist Seckendorf; 'the
bravest troops in the world,'"--who did bravely take one beating (at
Pfaffenhofen, as will be seen), and go home again. ("They have Coigny
guarding those fine Brisgau Conquests. And are furthermore diplomatizing
diligently, not to say truculently, in the Rhine Countries; bullying
poor little fat Kur-Trier, lean Kur-Koln and others, 'To join the
Frankfurt Union' not one of whom would, under menace),--though 'it
is the clear duty of all Reich's-Princes with a Kaiser under
oppression:'--and have marched Maillebois, directly after Freyburg, into
the Middle-Rhine Countries, to Koln Country, to Mainz Country, and to
and fro, in support of said compulsory diplomacies;--but without the
least effect."

To the "Middle-Rhine Countries," observe, and under Maillebois, then
under Conti, little matter under whom: only let readers recollect the
name of it;--for it is the FIRST of the French Attempts to do something
of a joint-stock nature; something for self AND Allies, instead of for
self only. It caused great alarm in those months, to Britannic George
and others; and brought out poor Duc d'Ahremberg with portions (no
English included) of the poor Pragmatic Army, to go marching about in
the winter slushes, instead of resting in bed, [Adelung, iv. 276, 420
("December, 1744-June, 1745").]--and is indeed a very loud business in
the old Gazettes and books, till August coming. Business which almost
broke poor D'Ahremberg's heart, he says, "till once I got out of
it" (was TURNED out, in fact): Business of Pragmatic Army, under
D'Ahremberg, VERSUS Middle-Rhine Army under Maillebois, under Conti;
Business now wholly of Zero VERSUS Zero to us,--except for a few dates
and reflex glimmerings upon King Friedrich. Result otherwise--We shall
see the Result!

"Attempt SECOND was still more important to Friedrich; being directed
upon the Kaiser and Bavaria. Belleisle is to go thither and take survey;
Belleisle thither first: you may judge if the intention is sincere!
Valori is quite eloquent upon it. Directly after Freyburg, says he,
Sechelles, that first of Commissaries, was sent to Munchen. Sechelles
cleared up the chaos of Accounts; which King Louis then instantly
paid. 'Your Imperial Majesty shall have Magazines also,' said Louis,
regardless of expense; 'and your Army, with auxiliaries (Segur and
25,000 of them French), shall be raised to 60,000.' Belleisle then came:
'We will have Ingolstadt, the first thing, in Spring.' Alas, Belleisle
had his Accident in the Harz; and all went aback, from that time."
[Valori, i. 322-329.] Aback, too indisputably, all!--"And Belleisle's
Accident?" Patience, readers.

"The truth is, Attempt SECOND, and chief, broke down at once [Bathyani
beating it to pieces, as will be seen],--the ruins of it painfully
reacting on Attempt FIRST; which had the like fate some months
later;--and there was no THIRD made. And, in fact, from the date of that
latter down-break, August, or end of July, 1745 [and quite especially
from "September 13th," by which time several irrevocable things had
happened, which we shall hear of], the French withdrew altogether out of
German entanglements; and concentrated themselves upon the Netherlands,
there to demolish his Britannic Majesty, as the likelier enterprise.
This was a course to which, ever since the Exit of Broglio and the
Oriflamme, they had been more and more tending and inclining, 'Nothing
for us but loss on loss, to be had in Germany!' and so they at last
frankly gave up that bad Country. They fought well in the Netherlands,
with great splendor of success, under Saxe VERSUS Cumberland and
Company. They did also some successful work in Italy;--and left
Friedrich to bear the brunt in Germany; too glad if he or another
were there to take Germany off their hand! Friedrich's feelings on his
arriving at this consummation, and during his gradual advance towards
it, which was pretty steady all along from those first 'drenched-hen
(POULES MOUILLEES)' procedures, were amply known to Excellency Valori,
and may be conceived by readers,"--who are slightly interested in the
dates of them at farthest. And now for the Belleisle Accident, with
these faint preliminary lights.



STRANGE ACCIDENT TO MARECHAL DE BELLEISLE IN THE HARZ MOUNTAINS (20th
December, 1744).

Siege of Freyburg being completed, and the River and most other things
(except always the bastions, which we blow up) being let into their old
channels there, Marechal de Belleisle, who is to have a chief management
henceforth,--the Most Christian King recognizing him again as his ablest
man in war or peace,--sets forth on a long tour of supervision, of
diplomacy and general arrangement, to prepare matters for the next
Campaign. Need enough of a Belleisle: what a business we have made of
it, since Friedrich trod on the serpent's tail for us.! Nothing but
our own Freyburg to show for ourselves; elsewhere, mere down-rush of
everything whitherward it liked;--and King Friedrich got into such a
humor! Friedrich must be put in tune again; something real and good to
be agreed on at Berlin: let that be the last thing, crown of the whole.
The first thing is, look into Bavaria a little; and how the Kaiser,
poor gentleman, in want of all requisites but good-will, can be put into
something of fighting posture.

"In the end of November, Marechal Duc de Belleisle, with his Brother the
Chevalier (now properly the Count, there having been promotions), and
a great retinue more, alights at Munchen; holds counsel with the poor
Kaiser for certain days:--Money wanted; many things wanted; and all
things, we need not doubt, much fallen out of square. 'Those Seckendorf
troops in their winter-quarters,' say our French Inspectors and Segur
people, as usual, 'do but look on it, your Excellency! Scattered, along
the valleys, into the very edge of Austria; Austria will swallow them,
the first thing, next year; they will never rendezvous again except in
the Austrian prisons. Surely, Monseigneur, only a man ignorant of war,
or with treasonous intention [or ill-off for victuals],--could post
troops in that way? Seckendorf is not ignorant of war!' say they.
[Valori, i. 206.] For, in fact, suspicion runs high; and there is no end
to the accusations just and unjust; and Seckendorf is as ill treated as
any of us could wish. Poor old soul. Probably nobody in all the Earth,
but his old Wife in the Schloss of Altenburg, has any pity for him,--if
even she, which I hope. He has fought and diplomatized and intrigued
in many countries, very much; and in his old days is hard bested.
Monseigueur, whose part is rather that of Jove the Cloud-compeller,
is studious to be himself noiseless amid this noise; and makes no
alteration in the Seckendorf troops; but it is certain he meant to do
it, thinks Valori."

And indeed Seckendorf, tired of the Bavarian bed-of-roses, had privately
fixed with himself to quit the same;--and does so, inexorable to the
very Kaiser, on New-Year arriving. [_Seckendorfs Leben,_ p. 365.]
Succeeded by Thorring (our old friend DRUM Thorring), if that be an
improvement. Marechal de Belleisle has still a long journey ahead,
and infinitely harder problems than these,--assuagement of the King of
Prussia, for example. Let us follow his remarkable steps.

"WEDNESDAY, 9th DECEMBER, 1744, the Marechal leaves Munchen,
northwards through OEttingen and the Bamberg-Anspach regions towards
Cassel;--journey of some three hundred and fifty miles: with a great
retinue of his own; with an escort of two hundred horse from the Kaiser;
these latter to prevent any outfall or insult in the Ingolstadt quarter,
where the Austrians have a garrison, not at all very tightly blocked by
the Seckendorf people thereabouts. No insult or outfall occurring, the
Marechal dismisses his escort at OEttingen; fares forward in his twenty
coaches and fourgons, some score or so of vehicles:--mere neutral
Imperial Countries henceforth, where the Kaiser's Agent, as Marechal
de Belleisle can style himself, and Titular Prince of the German Empire
withal, has only to pay his way. By Donauworth, by OEttingen; over
the Donau acclivities, then down the pleasant Valley of the Mayn. [See
REVIEW OF THE CASE OF MARSHAL BELLEISLE (or Abstract of it, _Gentleman's
Magazine,_ 1745, pp. 366-373); &c. &c.]

"SUNDAY, 13th DECEMBER, Marechal de Belleisle arrives at Hanau [where
we have seen Conferences held before now, and Carteret, Prince Karl and
great George our King very busy], there to confer with Marshals Coigny,
Maillebois and other high men, Commanders in those Rhine parts. Who
all come accordingly, except Marechal Maillebois, who is sorry that he
absolutely cannot; but will surely do himself the honor as Monseigneur
returns." As Monseigneur returns! "And so, on Monday, 14th, Monseigneur
starts for Cassel; say a hundred miles right north; where we shall meet
Prince Wilhelm of Hessen-Cassel, a zealous Ally; inform him how his
Troops, under Seckendorf, are posted [at Vilshofen yonder; hiding how
perilous their post is, or promising alterations]; perhaps rest a day or
two, consulting as to the common weal: How the King of Prussia takes
our treatment of him? How to smooth the King of Prussia, and turn him
to harmony again? We are approaching the true nodus of our business,
difficulty of difficulties; and Wilhelm, the wise Landgraf, may afford
a hint or two. Thus travels magnanimous Belleisle in twenty vehicles, a
man loaded with weighty matters, in these deep Winter months; suffering
dreadfully from rheumatic neuralgic ailments, a Doctor one of his
needfulest equipments; and has the hardest problem yet ahead of him.

"Prince Wilhelm's consultations are happily lost altogether; buried from
sight forever, to the last hint,--all except as to what road to Berlin
would be the best from Cassel. By Leipzig, through low-lying country, is
the great Highway, advisable in winter; but it runs a hundred and thirty
miles to right, before ever starting northward; such a roundabout. Not
to say that the Saxons are allies of Austria,--if there be anything in
that. Enemies, they, to the Most Christian King: though surely, again,
we are on Kaiser's business, nay we are titular 'Prince of the Reich,'
for that matter, such the Kaiser's grace to us? Well; it is better
perhaps to AVOID the Saxon Territory. And, of course, the Hanoverian
much more; through which lies the other Great Road! 'Go by the Harz,'
advises Landgraf Wilhelm: 'a rugged Hill Country; but it is your
hypotenuse towards Berlin; passes at once, or nearly so, from Cassel
Territory into Prussian: a rugged road, but a shorter and safer.' That
is the road Belleisle resolves upon. Twenty carriages; his Brother the
Chevalier and himself occupy one; and always the courier rides before,
ordering forty post-horses to be ready harnessed.

"SUNDAY, 20th DECEMBER, 1744. In this way they have climbed the eastern
shin of the Harz Range, where the Harz is capable of wheel-carriages;
and hope now to descend, this night, to Halberstadt; and thence rapidly
by level roads to Berlin. It is sinking towards dark; the courier is
forward to Elbingerode, ordering forty horses to be out. Roughish
uphill road; winter in the sky and earth, winter vapors and tumbling
wind-gusts: westward, in torn storm-cloak, the Bracken, with its
witch-dances; highland Goslar, and ghost of Henry the Fowler, on the
other side of it. A multifarious wizard Country, much overhung by goblin
reminiscences, witch-dances, sorcerers'-sabbaths and the like,--if a
rheumatic gentleman cared to look on it, in the cold twilight. Brrh!
Waste chasmy uplands, snow-choked torrents; wild people, gloomy firs!
Here at last, by one's watch 5 P.M., is Elbingerode, uncomfortable
little Town; and it is to be hoped the forty post-horses are ready.

"Behold, while the forty post-horses are getting ready, a thing takes
place, most unexpected;--which made the name of Elbingerode famous for
eight months to come. Of which let us hastily give the bare facts,
Fancy making of them what she can. Was Monseigneur aware that this
Elbingerode, with a patch of territory round it, is Hanoverian ground;
one of those distracted patches or ragged outskirts frequent in the
German map? Prussia is not yet, and Hessen-Cassel has ceased to be.
Undoubtedly Hanoverian! Apparently the Landgraf and Monseigneur had not
thought of that. But Munchhausen of Hanover, spies informing him,
had. The Bailiff (Vogt, AdVOCATus) has gathered twenty JAGER [official
Game-keepers] with their guns, and a select idle Sunday population of
the place with or without guns: the Vogt steps forward, and inquires for
Monseigneur's passport. 'No passport, no need of any!'--'Pardon!' and
signifies to Monseigneur, on the part of George Elector of Hanover, King
of Great Britain, France and Ireland, that Monseigneur is arrested!

"Monseigneur, with compressed or incompressible feelings, indignantly
complies,--what could he else, unfortunate rheumatic gentleman?--and is
plucked away in such sudden manner, he for one, out of that big German
game of his raising. The twenty vehicles are dragged different roads;
towards Scharzfels, Osterode, or I know not where,--handiest roads to
Hanover;--and Monseigneur himself has travelling treatment which might
be complained of, did not one disdain complaint: 'my Brother parted from
me, nay my Doctor, and my Interpreter;'"--not even speech possible to
me. [Letter of Belleisle next morning, "Neuhof, 21st December, 9 A.M."
(in _Valori,_ i. 204), to Munchhausen at Hanover,--by no possibility
"to Valori," as the distracted French Editor has given it!] That was the
Belleisle Accident in the Harz, Sunday Evening, 20th December, 1744.

"Afflicted indignant Valori, soon enough apprised, runs to Friedrich
with the news,--greets Friedrich with it just alighting from that
Silesian run of his own. Friedrich, not without several other things to
think of, is naturally sorry at such news; sorry for his own sake even;
but not overmuch. Friedrich refuses 'to despatch a party of horse,' and
cut out Marechal de Belleisle. "That will never do, MON CHER!'--and even
gets into FROIDES PLAISANTERIES: 'Perhaps the Marechal did it
himself? Tallard, prisoner after Blenheim, made PEACE, you know, in
England?'--and the like; which grieved the soul of Valori, and convinced
him of Friedrich's inhumanity, in a crying case.

"Belleisle is lugged on to Hanover; his case not doubtful to
Munchhausen, or the English Ministry,--though it raised great argument,
(was the capture fair, was it unfair? Is he entitled to exchange by
cartel, or not entitled?' and produced, in the next eight months, much
angry animated pamphleteering and negotiation. For we hear by and by,
he is to be forwarded to Stade, on the Hamburg sea-coast, where English
Seventy-fours are waiting for him; his case still undecided;--and,
in effect, it was not till after eight months that he got dismissal.
'Lodged handsomely in Windsor Palace,' in the interim; free on his
parole, people of rank very civil to him, though the Gazetteers were
sometimes ill-tongued,--had he understood their PATOIS, or concerned
himself about such things

["TUESDAY, 18th FEBRUARY [1st March, 1745], Marshal Belleisle landed at
Harwich; lay at Greenwich Palace, having crossed Thames at the Isle of
Dogs: next morning, about 10, set out, in a coach-and-six, Colonel
Douglas and two troops of horse escorting; arrived 3 P.M.,--by
Camberwell, Clapham, Wandsworth, over Kingston and Staines Bridges,--at
Windsor Castle, and the apartments ready for him." (_Gentleman's
Magazine,_ 1745, p 107.) Was let go 13th (24th) August, again with great
pomp and civilities (ib. p. 442). See Adelung, iv. 299, 346; v. 83, 84.]

"It was a current notion among contemporary mankind, this of Friedrich,
that Belleisle's capture might be a mere collusion, meant to bring about
a Peace in that Tallard fashion,--wide of the truth as such a notion
is, far as any Peace was from following. To Britannic George and his
Hanoverians it had merely seemed, Here was a chief War-Captain and
Diplomatist among the French; the pivot of all these world-wide
movements, as Valori defines him; which pivot, a chance offering, it
were well to twitch from its socket, and see what would follow. Perhaps
nothing will follow; next to nothing? A world, all waltzing in mad war,
is not to be stopped by acting on any pivot; your waltzing world will
find new pivots, or do without any, and perhaps only waltz the more
madly for wanting the principal one."

This withdrawal of Belleisle, the one Frenchman respected by Friedrich,
or much interested for his own sake in things German, is reckoned a main
cause why the French Alliance turned out so ill for Friedrich; and why
French effort took more and more a Netherlands direction thenceforth,
and these new French magnanimities on Friedrich's behalf issued in
futility again. Probably they never could have issued in very much: but
it is certain that, from this point, they also do become zero; and that
Friedrich, from his French alliance, reaped from first to last nothing
at all, except a great deal of obloquy from German neighbors, and from
the French side endless trouble, anger and disappointment in every
particular. Which 'might be a joy (though not unmixed) to Britannic
Majesty and the subtle followers who had ginned this fine Belleisle bird
in its flight over the Harz Range? Though again, had they passively let
him wing his way, and he had GOT "to be Commander and Manager," as was
in agitation,--he, Belleisle and in Germany, instead of Marechal de Saxe
with the Netherlands as chief scene,--what an advantage might that have
been to them!



THE KAISER KARL VII. GETS SECURED FROM OPPRESSIONS, IN A TRAGIC WAY.
FRIEDRICH PROPOSES PEACE, BUT TO NO PURPOSE.

A still sadder cross for Friedrich, in the current of foreign Accidents
and Diplomacies, was the next that befell; exactly a month later,--at
Munchen, 20th January, 1745. Hardly was Belleisle's back turned, when
her Hungarian Majesty, by her Bathyani and Company, broke furiously in
upon the poor Kaiser and his Seckendorf-Segur defences. Belleisle had
not reached the Harz, when all was going topsy-turvy there again, and
the Donau-Valley fast falling back into Austrian hands. Nor is that the
worst, or nearly so.

"MUNCHEN, 20th JANUARY, 1745. This day poor Kaiser Karl laid down his
earthly burden here, and at length gave all his enemies the slip. He
had been ill of gout for some time; a man of much malady always, with no
want of vexations and apprehensions. Too likely the Austrians will drive
him out of Munchen again; then nothing but furnished lodgings, and the
French to depend upon. He had been much chagrined by some Election,
just done, in the Chapter of Salzburg. [Adelung, iv. 249, 276, 313.]
The Archbishop there--it was Firmian, he of the SALZBURG EMIGRATION,
memorable to readers--had died, some while ago. And now, in flat
contradiction to Imperial customs, prerogatives, these people had
admitted an Austrian Garrison; and then, in the teeth of our express
precept, had elected an Austrian to their benefice: what can one account
it but an insult as well as an injury? And the neuralgic maladies press
sore, and the gouty twinges; and Belleisle is seized, perhaps with
important papers of ours; and the Seckendorf-Segur detachments were ill
placed; nay here are the Austrians already on the throat of them, in
midwinter! It is said, a babbling valet, or lord-in-waiting, happened to
talk of some skirmish that had fallen out (called a battle, in the valet
rumor), and how ill the French and Bavarians had fared in it, owing to
their ill behavior. And this, add they, proved to be the ounce-weight
too much for the so heavy-laden back.

"The Kaiser took to bed, not much complaining; patient, mild, though
the saddest of all mortals; and, in a day or two, died. Adieu, adieu,
ye loved faithful ones; pity me, and pray for me! He gave his Wife, poor
little fat devout creature, and his poor Children (eldest lad, his Heir,
only seventeen), a tender blessing; solemnly exhorted them, To eschew
ambition, and be warned by his example;--to make their peace with
Austria; and never, like him, try COM' E DURO CALLE, and what the
charity of Christian Kings amounts to. This counsel, it is thought, the
Empress Dowager zealously accedes to, and will impress upon her Son.
That is the Austrian and Cause-of-Liberty account: King Friedrich, from
the other side, has heard a directly opposite one. How the Kaiser, at
the point of death, exhorted his son, 'Never forget the services which
the King of France and the King of Prussia have done us, and do not
repay them with ingratitude.' [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 92;--and see
(PER CONTRA) in Adelung, iv. 314 A; in Coxe, &c.] The reader can choose
which he will, or reject both into the region of the uncertain. 'Karl
Albert's pious and affectionate demeanor drew tears from all eyes,' say
the by-standers: 'the manner in which he took leave of his Empress would
have melted a heart of stone.' He was in his forty-eighth year; he had
been, of all men in his generation, the most conspicuously unhappy."

What a down-rush of confusion there ensued on this event, not to Bavaria
alone, but to all the world, and to King Friedrich more than another,
no reader can now take the pains of conceiving. The "Frankfurt Union,"
then, has gone to air! Here is now no "Kaiser to be delivered from
oppression:" here is a new Kaiser to be elected,--"Grand-Duke Franz the
man," cry the Pragmatic Potentates with exultation, "no Belleisle to
disturb!"--and questions arise innumerable thereupon, Will France go
into electioneering again? The new Kur-Baiern, only seventeen, poor
child, cannot be set up as candidate. What will France do with HIM;
what he with France? Whom can the French try as Candidate against the
Grand-Duke? Kur-Sachsen, the Polish Majesty again? Belleisle himself
must have paused uncertain over such a welter,--and probably have done,
like the others, little or nothing in it, but left it to collapse by
natural gravitation.

Hungarian Majesty checked her Bavarian Armaments a little: "If perhaps
this young Kur-Baiern will detach himself from France, and on submissive
terms come over to us?" Whereupon, at Munchen, and in the cognate
quarters, such wriggling, dubitating and diplomatizing, as seldom
was,--French, Anti-French (Seckendorf busiest of all), straining every
nerve in that way, and for almost three months, nothing coming of
it,--till Hungarian Majesty sent her Barenklaus and Bathyanis upon them
again; and these rapidly solved the question, in what way we shall see!

Friedrich has still his hopes of Bavaria, so grandiloquent are the
French in regard to it; who but would hope? The French diplomatize to
all lengths in Munchen, promising seas and mountains; but they perform
little; in an effectual manner, nothing. Bavarian "Army raised to
60,000;" counts in fact little above half that number; with no General
to it but an imaginary one; Segur's actual French contingent, instead
of 25,000, is perhaps 12,000;--and so of other things. Add to all which,
Seckendorf is there, not now as War-General, but as extra-official
"Adviser;" busier than ever,--"scandalous old traitor!" say the
French;--and Friedrich may justly fear that Bavaria will go, by
collapse, a bad road for him.

Friedrich, a week or two after the Kaiser's death, seeing Bavarian and
French things in such a hypothetic state, instructs his Ambassador
at London to declare his, Friedrich's, perfect readiness and wish for
Peace: "Old Treaty of Breslau and Berlin made indubitable to me; the
rest of the quarrel has, by decease of the Kaiser, gone to air."
To which the Britannic Majesty, rather elated at this time, as all
Pragmatic people are, answers somewhat in a careless way, "Well, if
the others like it!" and promises that he will propose it in the proper
quarter. So that henceforth there is always a hope of Peace through
England; as well as contrariwise, especially till Bavaria settle itself
(in April next), a hope of great assistance from the French. Here are
potentialities and counter-potentialities, which make the Bavarian
Intricacy very agitating to the young King, while it lasts. And indeed
his world is one huge imbroglio of Potentialities and Diplomatic
Intricacies, agitating to behold. Concerning which we have again to
remark how these huge Spectres of Diplomacy, now filling Friedrich's
world, came mostly in result to Nothing;--shaping themselves wholly,
for or against, in exact proportion, direct or inverse, to the actual
Quantity of Battle and effective Performance that happened to be found
in Friedrich himself. Diplomatic Spectralities, wide Fatamorganas of
hope, and hideous big Bugbears blotting out the sun: of these, few
men ever had more than Friedrich at this time. And he is careful, none
carefuler, not to neglect his Diplomacies at any time;--though he
knows, better than most, that good fighting of his own is what alone
can determine the value of these contingent and aerial quantities,--mere
Lapland witchcraft the greater part of them.

A second grand Intricacy and difficulty, still more enigmatic, and
pressing the tighter by its close neighborhood, was that with the
Saxons. "Are the Saxons enemies; are they friends? Neutrals at lowest;
bound by Treaty to lend Austria troops; but to lend for defence merely,
not for offence! Could not one, by good methods, make friends with his
Polish Majesty?" Friedrich was far from suspecting the rages that lurked
in the Polish Majesty, and least of all owing to what. Owing to that old
MORAVIAN-FORAY business; and to his, Friedrich's, behavior to the Saxons
in it; excellent Saxons, who had behaved so beautifully to Friedrich!
That is the sad fact, however. Stupid Polish Majesty has his natural
envies, jealousies, of a Brandenburg waxing over his head at this rate.
But it appears, the Moravian Foray entered for a great deal into the
account, and was the final overwhelming item. Bruhl, by much descanting
on that famous Expedition,--with such candid Eye-witnesses to appeal to,
such corroborative Staff-officers and appliances, powerful on the idle
heart and weak brain of a Polish Majesty,--has brought it so far. Fixed
indignation, for intolerable usage, especially in that Moravian-Foray
time: fixed; not very malignant, but altogether obstinate (as, I am
told, that of the pacific sheep species usually is); which carried Bruhl
and his Polish Majesty to extraordinary heights and depths in years
coming! But that will deserve a section to itself by and by.

A third difficulty, privately more stringent than any, is that of
Finance. The expenses of the late Bohemian Expedition, "Friedrich's
Army costing 75,000 pounds a month," have been excessive. For our
next Campaign, if it is to be done in the way essential, there are, by
rigorous arithmetic, "900,000 pounds" needed. A frugal Prussia raises
no new taxes; pays its Wars from "the Treasure," from the Fund saved
beforehand for emergencies of that kind; Fund which is running low,
threatening to be at the lees if such drain on it continue. To fight
with effect being the one sure hope, and salve for all sores, it is
not in the Army, in the Fortresses, the Fighting Equipments, that there
shall be any flaw left! Friedrich's budget is a sore problem upon him;
needing endless shift and ingenuity, now and onwards, through this
war:--already, during these months, in the Berlin Schloss, a great deal
of those massive Friedrich-Wilhelm plate Sumptuosities, especially
that unparalleled Music-Balcony up stairs, all silver, has been, under
Fredersdorf's management, quietly taken away; "carried over, in the
night-time, to the Mint." [Orlich, ii. 126-128.]

And, in fact, no modern reader, not deeper in that distressing story
of the Austrian-Succession War than readers are again like to be, can
imagine to himself the difficulties of Friedrich at this time, as they
already lay disclosed, and kept gradually disclosing themselves,
for months coming; nor will ever know what perspicacity, patience
of scanning, sharpness of discernment, dexterity of management, were
required at Friedrich's hands;--and under what imminency of peril, too;
victorious deliverance, or ruin and annihilation, wavering fearfully
in the balance for him, more than once, or rather all along. But it
is certain the deeper one goes into that hideous Medea's Caldron of
stupidities, once so flamy, now fallen extinct, the more is one
sensible of Friedrich's difficulties; and of the talent for all kinds
of Captaincy,--by no means in the Field only, or perhaps even
chiefly,--that was now required of him. Candid readers shall accept
these hints, and do their best:--Friedrich himself made not the least
complaint of men's then misunderstanding him; still less will he now!
We, keeping henceforth the Diplomacies, the vaporous Foreshadows, and
general Dance of Unclean Spirits with their intrigues and spectralities,
well underground, so far as possible, will stick to what comes up as
practical Performance on Friedrich's part, and try to give intelligible
account of that.

Valori says, he is greatly changed, and for the better, by these late
reverses of fortune. All the world notices it, says Valori. No longer
that brief infallibility of manner; that lofty light air, that politely
disdainful view of Valori and mankind: he has now need of men. Complains
of nothing, is cheerful, quizzical;--ardently busy to "grind out the
notches," as our proverb is; has a mild humane aspect, something of
modesty, almost of piety in him. Help me, thou Supreme Power, Maker of
men, if my purposes are manlike! Though one does not go upon the Prayers
of Forty-Hours, or apply through St. Vitus and such channels, there may
be something of authentic petition to Heaven in the thoughts of that
young man. He is grown very amiable; the handsomest young bit of Royalty
now going. He must fight well next Summer, or it will go hard with him!



Chapter VI.--VALORI GOES ON AN ELECTIONEERING MISSION TO DRESDEN.

Some time in January, a new Frenchman, a "Chevalier de Courten," if the
name is known to anybody, was here at Berlin; consulting, settling about
mutual interests and operations. Since Belleisle is snatched from us,
it is necessary some Courten should come; and produce what he has got:
little of settlement, I should fear, of definite program that will
hold water; in regard to War operations chiefly a magazine of clouds.
[Specimens of it, in Ranke, iii. 219.] For the rest, the Bavarian
question; and very specially, Who the new Emperor is to be?"King of
Poland, thinks your Majesty?"--"By all means," answers Friedrich, "if
you can! Detach him from Austria; that will be well!" Which was reckoned
magnanimous, at least public-spirited, in Friedrich; considering what
Saxony's behavior to him had already been. "By all means, his Polish
Majesty for Kaiser; do our utmost, Excellencies Valori, Courten and
Company!" answers Friedrich,--and for his own part, I observe, is
intensely busy upon Army matters, looking after the main chance.

And so Valori is to go to Dresden, and manage this cloud or cobwebbery
department of the thing; namely, persuade his Polish Majesty to stand
for the Kaisership: "Baiern, Pfalz, Koln, Brandenburg, there are four
votes, Sire; your own is five: sure of carrying it, your Polish Majesty;
backed by the Most Christian King, and his Allies and resources!" And
Polish Majesty does, for his own share, very much desire to be Kaiser.
But none of us yet knows how he is tied up by Austria, Anti-Friedrich,
Anti-French considerations; and can only "accept if it is offered me:"
thrice-willing to accept, if it will fall into my mouth; which, on those
terms, it has so little chance of doing!--Saxony and its mysterious
affairs and intentions having been, to Friedrich, a riddle and trouble
and astonishment, during all this Campaign, readers ought to know the
fact well;--and no reader could stand the details of such a fact. Here,
in condensed form, are some scraps of Excerpt; which enable us to go
with Valori on this Dresden Mission, and look for ourselves:--



1. FRIEDRICH'S POSITION TOWARDS SAXONY.

"... By known Treaty, the Polish Majesty is bound to assist the
Hungarian with 12,000 men, 'whenever invaded in her own dominions.'
Polish Majesty had 20,000 in the field for that object lately,--part
of them, 8,000 of them, hired by Britannic subsidy, as he alleges. The
question now is, Will Saxony assist Austria in invading Silesia, with
or without Britannic subsidy? Friedrich hopes that this is impossible!
Friedrich is deeply unaware of the humor he has raised against himself
in the Saxon Court-circles; how the Polish Majesty regards that Moravian
Foray; with what a perfect hatred little Bruhl regards him, Friedrich;
and to what pitch of humor, owing to those Moravian-Foray starvings,
marchings about and inhuman treatment of the poor Saxon Army, not to
mention other offences and afflictive considerations, Bruhl has raised
the simple Polish Majesty against Friedrich. These things, as they
gradually unfolded themselves to Friedrich, were very surprising. And
proved very disadvantageous at the present juncture and for a long time
afterwards. To Friedrich disadvantageous and surprising; and to Saxony,
in the end, ruinous; poor Saxony having got its back broken by them, and
never stood up in the world since! Ruined by this wretched little Bruhl;
and reduced, from the first place in Northern Teutschland, to a second
or third, or no real place at all."



2. THERE IS A, "UNION OF WARSAW" (8th January, 1745); AND STILL MORE
SPECIALLY A "TREATY OF WARSAW" (8th January-18th May, 1745).

"January 8th, 1745, before the Old Dessauer got ranked in Schlesien
against Traun, there had concluded itself at Warsaw, by way of
counterpoise to the 'Frankfurt Union,' a 'Union of Warsaw,' called
also 'Quadruple Alliance of Warsaw;' the Parties to which were Polish
Majesty, Hungarian ditto, Prime-Movers, and the two Sea-Powers as
Purseholders; stipulating, to the effect: 'We Four will hold together in
affairs of the Reich VERSUS that dangerous Frankfurt Union; we will'--do
a variety of salutary things; and as one practical thing, 'There shall
be, this Season, 30,000 Saxons conjoined to the Austrian Force, for
which we Sea-Powers will furnish subsidy.'--This was the one practical
point stipulated, January 8th; and farther than this the Sea-Powers did
not go, now or afterwards, in that affair.

"But there was then proposed by the Polish and Hungarian Majesties,
in the form of Secret Articles, an ulterior Project; with which the
Sea-Powers, expressing mere disbelief and even abhorrence of it, refused
to have any concern now or henceforth. Polish Majesty, in hopes it
would have been better taken, had given his 30,000 soldiers at a rate
of subsidy miraculously low, only 150,000 pounds for the whole: but the
Sea-Powers were inexorable, perhaps almost repented of their 150,000
pounds; and would hear nothing farther of secret Articles and delirious
Projects.

"So that the 'Union of Warsaw' had to retire to its pigeon-hole, content
with producing those 30,000 Saxons for the immediate occasion; and
there had to be concocted between the Polish and Hungarian Majesties
themselves what is now, in the modern Pamphlets, called a 'TREATY of
Warsaw,'--much different from the innocent, 'UNION of Warsaw;' though it
is merely the specifying and fixing down of what had been shadowed
out as secret codicils in said 'Union,' when the Sea-Power parties
obstinately recoiled. Treaty of Warsaw let us continue to call it;
though its actual birth-place was Leipzig (in the profoundest secrecy,
18th May, 1745), above four months after it had tried to be born at
Warsaw, and failed as aforesaid. Warsaw Union is not worth speaking
of; but this other is a Treaty highly remarkable to the reader,--and to
Friedrich was almost infinitely so, when he came to get wind of it long
after.

"Treaty which, though it proved abortional, and never came to fulfilment
in any part of it, is at this day one of the remarkablest bits of
sheepskin extant in the world. It was signed 18th May, 1745; [Scholl,
ii. 350.] and had cost a great deal of painful contriving, capable still
of new altering and retouching, to hit mutual views: Treaty not only for
reconquering Silesia (which to the Two Majesties, though it did not
to the Sea-Powers, seems infallible, in Friedrich's now ruined
circumstances), but for cutting down that bad Neighbor to something like
the dimensions proper for a Brandenburg Vassal;--in fact, quite the old
'Detestable Project' of Spring, 1741, only more elaborated into detail
(in which Britannic George knows better than to meddle!)--Saxony to have
share of the parings, when we get them. 'What share?' asked Saxony, and
long keeps asking. 'A road to Warsaw; Strip of Country carrying us from
the end of the Lausitz, which is ours, into Poland, which we trust will
continue ours, would be very handy! Duchy of Glogau; some small paring
of Silesia, won't your Majesty?' 'Of my Silesia not one hand-breadth,'
answered the Queen impatiently (though she did at last concede
some outlying hand-breadths, famed old 'Circle of Schwiebus,' if I
recollect); and they have had to think of other equivalent parings for
Saxony's behoof (Magdeburg, Halberstadt, Saale-Circle, or one knows
not what); and have had, and will have, their adoes to get it fixed.
Excellent bearskin to be slit into straps; only the bear is still on his
feet!--Polish Majesty and Hungarian, Polish with especial vigor, Bruhl
quite restless upon it, are--little as Valori or any mortal could dream
of it--engaged in this partition of the bearskin, when Valori arrives.
Of their innocent Union of Warsaw, there was, from the first, no secret
made; but the Document now called 'TREATY of Warsaw' needs to lie secret
and thrice-secret; and it was not till 1756 that Friedrich, having
unearthed it by industries of his own, and studied it with great
intensity for some years, made it known to the world." [Adelung, v. 308.
397; Ranke, iii. 231 (who, for some reason of his own, dates "3d May"
instead of 18th].

Treaties, vaporous Foreshadows of Events, have oftenest something of the
ghost in them; and are importune to human nature, longing for the Events
themselves; all the more if they have proved abortional Treaties, and
become doubly ghost-like or ghastly. Nevertheless the reader is to
note well this Treaty of Warsaw, as important to Friedrich and him; and
indeed it is perhaps the remarkablest Treaty, abortional or realized,
which got to parchment in that Century. For though it proved abortional,
and no part of it, now or afterwards, could be executed, and even the
subsidy and 30,000 Saxons (stipulated in the "UNION of Warsaw") became
crow's-meat in a manner,--this preternatural "Treaty of Warsaw," trodden
down never so much by the heel of Destiny, and by the weight of
new Treaties, superseding it or presupposing its impossibility or
inconceivability, would by no means die (such the humor of Bruhl, of
the Two Majesties and others); but lay alive under the ashes, carefully
tended, for Ten or Twenty Years to come;--and had got all Europe kindled
again, for destruction of that bad Neighbor, before it would itself
consent to go out! And did succeed in getting Saxony's back broken,
if not the bad Neighbor's,--in answer to the humor of little Bruhl;
unfortunate Saxony to possess such a Bruhl!

In those beautiful Saxon-Austrian developments of the Treaty of
Warsaw, Czarina Elizabeth, bobbing about in that unlovely whirlpool of
intrigues, amours, devotions and strong liquor, which her History is,
took (ask not for what reason) a lively part:--and already in this
Spring of 1745, they hope she could, by "a gift of two millions for
her pleasures" (gift so easy to you Sea-Powers), be stirred up to anger
against Friedrich. And she did, in effect, from this time, hover about
in a manner questionable to Friedrich; though not yet in anger, but
only with the wish to be important, and to make herself felt in Foreign
affairs. Whether the Sea-Powers gave her that trifle of pocket-money
("for her pleasures"), I never knew; but it is certain they spent, first
and last, very large amounts that way, upon her and hers; especially the
English did, with what result may be considered questionable.

As for Graf von Bruhl, most rising man of Saxony, once a page; now by
industry King August III.'s first favorite and factotum; the fact that
he cordially hates Friedrich is too evident; but the why is not known to
me. Except indeed, That no man--especially no man with three hundred
and sixty-five fashionable suits of clothes usually about him, different
suit each day of the year--can be comfortable in the evident contempt of
another man. Other man of sarcastic bantering turn, too; tongue sharp
as needles; whose sayings many birds of the air are busy to carry about.
Year after year, Bruhl (doubtless with help enough that way, if there
had needed such) hates him more and more; as the too jovial Czarina
herself comes to do, wounded by things that birds have carried. And now
we will go with Valori,--seeing better into some things than Valori yet
can.



3. VALORI'S ACCOUNT OF HIS MISSION (in compressed form). [Valori, i.
211-219.]

"Valori [I could guess about the 10th of February, but there is no date
at all] was despatched to Dresden with that fine project, Polish Majesty
for Kaiser: is authorized to offer 60,000 men, with money corresponding,
and no end of brilliant outlooks;--must keep back his offers, however,
if he find the people indisposed. Which he did, to an extreme degree;
nothing but vague talk, procrastination, hesitation on the part of
Bruhl. This wretched little Bruhl has twelve tailors always sewing for
him, and three hundred and sixty-five suits of clothes: so many suits,
all pictured in a Book; a valet enters every morning, proposes a suit,
which, after deliberation, with perhaps amendments, is acceded to, and
worn at dinner. Vainest of human clothes-horses; foolishest coxcomb
Valori has seen: it is visibly his notion that it was he, Bruhl, by his
Saxon auxiliaries, by his masterly strokes of policy, that checkmated
Friedrich, and drove him from Bohemia last Year; and, for the rest, that
Friedrich is ruined, and will either shirk out of Silesia, or be cut to
ribbons there by the Austrian force this Summer. To which Valori hints
dissent; but it is ill received. Valori sees the King; finds him, as
expected, the fac-simile of Bruhl in this matter; Jesuit Guarini the
like: how otherwise? They have his Majesty in their leash, and lead him
as they please.

"At four every morning, this Guarini, Jesuit Confessor to the King and
Queen, comes to Bruhl; Bruhl settles with him what his Majesty shall
think, in reference to current business, this day; Guarini then goes,
confesses both Majesties; confesses, absolves, turns in the due way
to secular matters. At nine, Bruhl himself arrives, for Privy Council:
'What is your Majesty pleased to think on these points of current
business?' Majesty serenely issues his thoughts, in the form of orders;
which are found correct to pattern. This is the process with his
Majesty. A poor Majesty, taking deeply into tobacco; this is the way
they have him benetted, as in a dark cocoon of cobwebs, rendering the
whole world invisible to him. Which cunning arrangement is more and more
perfected every year; so that on all roads he travels, be it to mass,
to hunt, to dinner, any-whither in his Palace or out of it, there are
faithful creatures keeping eye, who admit no unsafe man to the least
glimpse of him by night or by day. In this manner he goes on; and before
the end of him, twenty years hence, has carried it far. Nothing but
disgust to be had out of business;--mutinous Polish Diets too, some
forty of them, in his time, not one of which did any business at all,
but ended in LIBERUM VETO, and Billingsgate conflagration, perhaps
with swords drawn: [See Buchholz, 154; &c.]--business more and more
disagreeable to him. What can Valori expect, on this heroic occasion,
from such a King?

"The Queen herself, Maria Theresa's Cousin, an ambitious hard-favored
Majesty,--who had sense once to dislike Bruhl, but has been quite
reconciled to him by her Jesuit Messenger of Heaven (which latter is an
oily, rather stupid creature, who really wishes well to her, and loves
a peaceable life at any price),--even she will not take the bait. Valori
was in Dresden nine days (middle part of February, it is likely); never
produced his big bait, his 60,000 men and other brilliancies, at all.
He saw old Feldmarschall Konigseck passing from Vienna towards the
Netherlands Camp; where he is to dry-nurse (so they irreverently call
it, in time coming) his Royal Highness of Cumberland, that magnificent
English Babe of War, and do feats with him this Summer." Konigseck,
though Valori did not know it, has endless diplomacies to do withal;
inspections of troops, advisings, in Hanover, in Holland, in Dresden
here; [Anonymous,--Duke of Cumberland,--p. 186.]--and secures the Saxon
Electoral-Vote for his Grand-Duke in passing. "The welcome given to
Konigseck disgusted Valori; on the ninth day he left; said adieu, seeing
them blind to their interest; and took post for Berlin,"--where he finds
Friedrich much out of humor at the Saxon reception of his magnanimities.
[Valori, i. 211-219; _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 81-85. For details
on Bruhl, see _Graf von Bruhl, Leben und Charakter_ (1760, No Place):
Anonymous, by one Justi, a noted Pamphleteer of the time: exists in
English too, or partly exists; but is unreadable, except on compulsion;
and totally unintelligible till after very much inquiry elsewhere.]

This Saxon intricacy, indecipherable, formidable, contemptible, was the
plague of Friedrich's life, one considerable plague, all through this
Campaign. Perhaps nothing in the Diplomatic sphere of things caused
him such perplexity, vexation, indignation. An insoluble riddle to
him; extremely contemptible, yet,--with a huge Russia tacked to it, and
looming minatory in the distance,--from time to time, formidable enough.
Let readers keep it in mind, and try to imagine it. It cost Friedrich
such guessing, computing, arranging, rearranging, as would weary the
toughest reader to hear of in detail. How Friedrich did at last solve it
(in December coming), all readers will see with eyes!--



MIDDLE-RHINE ARMY IN A STAGGERING STATE; THE BAVARIAN INTRICACY SETTLES
ITSELF, THE WRONG WAY.

Early in March it becomes surmisable that Maillebois's Middle-Rhine Army
will not go a good road. Maillebois has been busy in those countries,
working extensive discontent; bullying mankind "to join the Frankfurt
Union," to join France at any rate, which nobody would consent to; and
exacting merciless contributions, which everybody had to consent to and
pay.--And now, on D'Ahremberg's mere advance, with that poor Fraction
of Pragmatic Army, roused from its winter sleep, Maillebois, without
waiting for D'Ahremberg's attack, rapidly calls in his truculent
detachments, and rolls confusedly back into the Frankfurt regions.
[Adelung, iv. 276-352 (December, 1744-March, 1745).] Upon which
D'Ahremberg--if by no means going upon Maillebois's throat--sets, at
least, to coercing Wilhelm of Hessen, our only friend in those parts;
who is already a good deal disgusted with the Maillebois procedures,
and at a loss what to do on the Kaiser's death, which has killed the
Frankfurt Union too. Wise Wilhelm consents, under D'Ahremberg's menaces,
to become Neutral; and recall his 6,000 out of Baiern,--wishes he had
them home beside him even now!

With an Election in the wind, it is doubly necessary for the French, who
have not even a Candidate as yet, to stand supreme and minatory in the
Frankfurt Country; and to King Friedrich it is painfully questionable,
whether Maillebois can do it. "Do it we will; doubt not that, your
Majesty!" answer Valori and the French;--and study to make improvements,
reinforcements, in their Rhine Army. And they do, at least, change the
General of their Middle-Rhine Army,--that is to say, recall Prince Conti
out of Italy, where he has distinguished himself, and send Maillebois
thither in his stead,--who likewise distinguishes himself THERE, if that
could be a comfort to us! Whether the distinguished Conti will maintain
that Frankfurt Country in spite of the Austrians and their Election
movements, is still a question with Friedrich, though Valori continued
assuring him (always till July came) that, it was beyond question.
"Siege of Tournay, vigorous Campaign in the Netherlands (for behoof of
Britannic George)!" this is the grand French program for the Year. This
good intention was achieved, on the French part; but this, like Aaron's
rod among the serpents, proved to have EATEN the others as it wriggled
along!--

Those Maillebois-D'Ahremberg affairs throw a damp on the Bavarian
Question withal;--in fact, settle the Bavarian Question; her Hungarian
Majesty, tired of the delays, having ordered Bathyani to shoulder arms
again, and bring a decision. Bathyani, with Barenklau to right of him,
and Browne (our old Silesian friend) to left, goes sweeping across those
Seckendorf-Segur posts, and without difficulty tumbles everything to
ruin, at a grand rate. The traitor Seckendorf had made such a choice of
posts,--left unaltered by Drum Thorring;--what could French valor do?
Nothing; neither French valor, nor Bavarian want of valor, could
do anything but whirl to the right-about, at sight of the Austrian
Sweeping-Apparatus; and go off explosively, as in former instances, at
a rate almost unique in military annals. Finished within three weeks or
so!--We glance only at two points of it. March 21st, Bathyani stood to
arms (to BESOMS we might call it), Browne on the left, Barenklau on the
right: it was March 21st when Bathyani started from Passau, up the Donau
Countries;--and within the week coming, see:--

"VILSHOFEN, 28th MARCH, 1745. Here, at the mouth of the Vils River
(between Inn and Iser), is the first considerable Post; garrison some
4,000; Hessians and Prince Friedrich the main part,--who have their
share of valor, I dare say; but with such news out of Hessen, not to
speak of the prospects in this Country, are probably in poorish spirits
for acting. General Browne summons them in Vilshofen, this day; and, on
their negative, storms in upon them, bursts them to pieces; upon which
they beat chamade. But the Croats, who are foremost, care nothing for
chamade: go plundering, slaughtering; burn the poor Town; butcher [in
round numbers] 3,000 of the poor Hessians; and wound General Browne
himself, while he too vehemently interferes." [Adelung, iv. 356, and the
half-intelligible Foot-note in Ranke, iii. 220.] This was the finale
of those 6,000 Hessians, and indeed their principal function, while in
French pay;--and must have been, we can Judge how surprising to Prince
Friedrich, and to his Papa on hearing of it! Note another point.

Precisely about this time twelvemonth, "March 16th, 1746," the same
Prince Friedrich, with remainder of those Hessians, now again completed
to 6,000, and come back with emphasis to the Britannic side of
things, was--marching out of Edinburgh, in much state, with streamers,
kettle-drums, Highness's coaches, horses, led-horses, on an unexpected
errand. [Henderson (Whig Eye-witness). _History of the Rebellion,_ 1745
and 1746 (London, 1748, reprint from the Edinburgh edition), pp. 104,
106, 107.] Toward Stirling, Perth; towards Killiecrankie, and raising of
what is called "the Siege of Blair in Athol" (most minute of "sieges,"
but subtending a great angle there and then);--much of unexpected, and
nearer home than "Tournay and the Netherlands Campaign," having happened
to Britannic George in the course of this year, 1746! "Really very fine
troops, those Hessians [observes my orthodox Whig friend]: they carry
swords as well as guns and bayonets; their uniform is blue turned up
with white: the Hussar part of them, about 500, have scimitars of
a great length; small horses, mostly black, of Swedish breed; swift
durable little creatures, with long tails." Honors, dinners, to his
Serene Highness had been numerous, during the three weeks we had him
in Edinburgh; "especially that Ball, February 21st (o.s.), eve of his
Consort the Princess Mary's Birthday [EVE of birthday, "let us dance the
auspicious morning IN] was, for affluence of Nobility and Gentry of both
sexes," a sublime thing...."

PFAFFENHOFEN, APRIL 15th. "Unfortunate Segur, the Segur of Linz three
years ago,--whose conduct was great, according to Valori, but powerless
against traitors and fate!--was again, once more, unfortunate in those
parts. Unfortunate Segur drew up at Pfaffenhofen (centre of the Country,
many miles from Vilshofen) to defend himself, when fallen upon by
Barenklau, in that manner; but could not, though with masterly demeanor;
and had to retreat three days, with his face to the enemy, so to speak,
fighting and manoeuvring all the way: no shelter for him either but
Munchen, and that, a most temporary one. Instead of taking Straubingen,
taking Passau, perhaps of pushing on to Vienna itself, this is what
we have already come to. No Rhine Army, Middle-Rhine Army, Coigny,
Maillebois, Conti, whoever it was, should send us the least
reinforcement, when shrieked to. No outlook whatever but rapid
withdrawal, retreat to the Rhine Army, since it will not stir to help
us." [Adelung, iv. 360.]

"The young Kur-Baiern is still polite, grateful [to us French],
overwhelms us with politeness; but flies to Augsburg, as his Father used
to do. Notable, however, his poor fat little Mother won't, this time:
'No, I will stay here, I for one, and have done with flying and running;
we have had enough of that!' Seckendorf, quite gone from Court in this
crisis, reappears, about the middle of April, in questionable capacity;
at a place called Fussen, not far off, at the foot of the Tyrol
Hills;--where certain Austrian Dignitaries seem also to be enjoying a
picturesque Easter! Yes indeed: and, on APRIL 22d, there is signed a
'PEACE OF FUSSEN' there; general amicable AS-YOU-WERE, between Austria
and Bavaria ('Renounce your Anti-Pragmatic moonshine forevermore, vote
for our Grand-Duke; there is your Bavaria back, poor wretches!')--and
Seckendorf, it is presumable, will get his Turkish arrears liquidated.

"The Bavarian Intricacy, which once excelled human power, is settled,
then. Carteret and Haslang tried it in vain [dreadful heterodox
intentions of secularizing Salzburg, secularizing Passau, Regensburg,
and loud tremulous denial of such];--Carteret and Wilhelm of Hesseu
[Conferences of Hanau, which ruined Carteret], in vain; King Friedrich,
and many Kings, in vain: a thing nobody could settle;--and it has at
last settled itself, as the generality of ill-guided and unlucky things
do, by collapse. Delirium once out, the law of gravity acts; and there
the mad matter lies."

"Bought by Austria, that old villain!" cry the French. Friedrich does
not think the Austrians bought Seckendorf, having no money at present;
but guesses they may have given him to understand that a certain large
arrear of payment due ever since those Turkish Wars,--when Seckendorf,
instead of payment, was lodged in the Fortress of Gratz, and almost
got his head cut off,--should now be paid down in cash, or authentic
Paper-money, if matters become amicable. [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii.
22; _Seckendorfs Leben,_ pp. 367-376.] As they have done, in Friedrich's
despite;--who seems angrier at the old stager for this particular
ill-turn than for all the other many; and long remembers it, as will
appear.



Chapter VII.--FRIEDRICH IN SILESIA; UNUSUALLY BUSY.

Here, sure enough, are sad new intricacies in the Diplomatic, hypothetic
sphere of things; and clouds piling themselves ahead, in a very minatory
manner to King Friedrich. Let King Friedrich, all the more, get his
Fighting Arrangements made perfect. Diplomacy is clouds; beating of
your enemies is sea and land. Austria and the Gazetteer world consider
Friedrich to be as good as finished: but that is privately far from
being Friedrich's own opinion;--though these occurrences are heavy and
dismal to him, as none of us can now fancy.

Herr Ranke has got access, in the Archives, to a series of private
utterances by Friedrich,--Letters from him, of a franker nature than
usual, and letting us far deeper into his mind;--which must have been
well worth reading in the original, in their fully dated and developed
condition. From Herr Ranke's Fragmentary Excerpts, let us, thankful
for what we have got, select one or two. The Letters are to Minister
Podewils at Berlin; written from Silesia (Neisse and neighborhood),
where, since the middle of March, Friedrich has been, personally pushing
on his Army Preparations, while the above sinister things befell.



KING FRIEDRICH TO PODEWILS, IN BERLIN (under various dates, March-April,
1745).

NEISSE, 29th MARCH.... "We find ourselves in a great crisis. If we
don't, by mediation of England, get Peace, our enemies from different
sides [Saxony, Austria, who knows if not Russia withal!] will come
plunging in against me. Peace I cannot force them to. But if they
must have War, we will either beat them, or none of us will see Berlin
again." [Ranke, iii. 236 et seqq.]

APRIL (no day given).... "In any case, I have my troops well together.
The sicknesses are ceasing; the recruitments are coming in: shortly all
will be complete. That does not hinder us from making Peace, if it will
only come; but, in the contrary case, nobody can accuse me of neglecting
what was necessary."

APRIL 17th (still from Neisse).... "I toil day and night to improve our
situation. The soldiers will do their duty. There is none among us who
will not rather have his backbone broken than give up one foot-breadth
of ground. They must either grant us a good Peace, or we will surpass
ourselves by miracles of daring; and force the enemy to accept it from
us."

APRIL 20th. "Our situation is disagreeable; constrained, a kind of
spasm: but my determination is taken. If we needs must fight, we will do
it like men driven desperate. Never was there a greater peril than
that I am now in. Time, at its own pleasure, will untie this knot; or
Destiny, if there is one, determine the event. The game I play is so
high, one cannot contemplate the issue with cold blood. Pray for the
return of my good luck."--Two days hence, the poor young Kur-Baiern,
deaf to the French seductions and exertions, which were intense, had
signed his "Peace of Fussen" (22d April 1745),--a finale to France on
the German Field, as may be feared! The other Fragments we will give a
little farther on.

Friedrich had left Berlin for Silesia March 15th; rather sooner than he
counted on,--Old Leopold pleading to be let home. At Glogau, at Breslau,
there had been the due inspecting: Friedrich got to Neisse on the 23d
(Bathyani just stirring in that Bavarian Business, Vilshofen and the
Hessians close ahead); and on the 27th, had dismissed Old Leopold,
with thanks and sympathies,--sent him home, "to recover his health."
Leopold's health is probably suffering; but his heart and spirits still
more. Poor old man, he has just lost--the other week, "5th February"
last--his poor old Wife, at Dessau; and is broken down with grief. The
soft silk lining of his hard Existence, in all parts of it, is torn
away. Apothecary Fos's Daughter, Reich's Princess, Princess of Dessau,
called by whatever name, she had been the truest of Wives; "used to
attend him in all his Campaigns, for above fifty years back." "Gone,
now, forever gone!"--Old Leopold had wells of strange sorrow in the
rugged heart of him,--sorrow, and still better things,--which he does
not wear on his sleeve. Here is an incident I never can forget;--dating
twelve or thirteen years ago (as is computable), middle of July, 1732.

"Louisa, Leopold's eldest Daughter, Wife of Victor Leopold, reigning
Prince of Anhalt-Bernburg, lay dying of a decline." Still only
twenty-three, poor Lady, though married seven years ago;--the end now
evidently drawing nigh. "A few days before her death,--perhaps some
attendant sorrowfully asking, 'Can we do nothing, then?'--she was heard
to say, 'If I could see my Father at the head of his Regiment, yet
once!'"--Halle, where the Regiment lies, is some thirty or more miles
off; and King Friedrioh Wilhelm, I suppose, would have to be written
to:--Leopold was ready the soonest possible; and, "at a set hour,
marched, in all pomp, with banner flying, music playing, into the
SCHLOSS-HOF (Palace Court) of Bernburg; and did the due salutations
and manoeuvrings,--his poor Daughter sitting at her window, till they
ended;"--figure them, the last glitter of those muskets, the last wail
of that band-music!--"The Regiment was then marched to the Waisenhaus
(ORPHAN-HOUSE), where the common men were treated with bread and beer;
all the Officers dining at the Prince's Table. All the Officers, except
Leopold alone, who stole away out of the crowd; sat himself upon the
balustrade of the Saale Bridge, and wept into the river." [LEBEN (12mo;
not Rannft's, but Anonymous like his), p. 234 n.]--Leopold is now on the
edge of seventy; ready to think all is finished with him. Perhaps not
quite, my tough old friend; recover yourself a little, and we shall see!

Old Leopold is hardly home at Dessau, when new Pandour Tempests, tides
of ravaging War, again come beating against the Giant Mountains, pouring
through all passes; from utmost Jablunka, westward by Jagerndorf to
Glatz, huge influx of wild riding hordes, each with some support of
Austrian grenadiers, cannoniers; threatening to submerge Silesia.
Precursors, Friedrich need not doubt, of a strenuous regular attempt
that way, Hungarian Majesty's fixed intention, hope and determination
is, To expel him straightway from Silesia. Her Patent circulates,
these three months; calling on all men to take note of that fixed
fact, especially on all Silesian men to note it well, and shift their
allegiance accordingly. Silesian men, in great majority,--our friend
the Mayor of Landshut, for example?--are believed to have no inclination
towards change: and whoever has, had clearly better not show any till he
see! [In Ranke (iii. 234), there is vestige of some intended
"voluntary subscription by the common people of Glatz," for Friedrich's
behoof;--contrariwise, in Orlich (ii. 380, "6th February, 1745," from
the Dessau Archives), notice of one individual, suspected of stirring
for Austria, whom "you are to put under lock and key;"--but he runs off,
and has no successor, that I hear of.]--

Friedrich's thousand-fold preliminary orderings, movements, rearrangings
in his Army matters, must not detain us here;--still less his dealings
with the Pandour element, which is troublesome, rather than dangerous.
Vigilance, wise swift determination, valor drilled to its work, can deal
with phenomena of that nature, though never so furious and innumerable.
Not a cheering service for drilled valor, but a very needful one.
Continual bickerings and skirmishings fell out, sometimes rising to
sharp fight on the small scale:--Austrian grenadiers with cannon are on
that Height to left, and also on this to right, meaning to cut off our
march; the difficult landscape furnished out, far and wide, with Pandour
companies in position: you must clash in, my Burschen; seize me that
cannon-battery yonder; master such and such a post,--there is the heart
of all that network of armed doggery; slit asunder that, the network
wholly will tumble over the Hills again. Which is always done, on
the part of the Prussian Burschen; though sometimes not, without
difficulty.--His Majesty is forming Magazines at Neisse, Brieg, and
the principal Fortresses in those parts; driving on all manner of
preparations at the rapidest rate of speed, and looking with his own
eyes into everything. The regiments are about what we may call complete,
arithmetically and otherwise; the cavalry show good perfection in their
new mode of manoeuvring;--it is to be hoped the Fighting Apparatus
generally will give fair account of itself when the time comes. Our one
anchor of hope, as now more and more appears.

On the Pandour element he first tried (under General Hautcharmoi, with
Winterfeld as chief active hand) a direct outburst or two, with a view
to slash them home at once. But finding that it was of no use, as they
always reappeared in new multitudes, he renounced that; took to calling
in his remoter outposts; and, except where Magazines or the like
remained to be cared for, let the Pandours baffle about, checked only by
the fortified Towns, and more and more submerge the Hill Country. Prince
Karl, to be expected in the form of lion, mysteriously uncertain on
which side coming to invade us,--he, and not the innumerable weasel
kind, is our important matter! By the end of April (news of the PEACE
OF FUSSEN coming withal), Friedrich had quitted Neisse; lay cantoned, in
Neisse Valley (between Frankenstein and Patschkau, "able to assemble in
forty-eight hours"); studying, with his whole strength, to be ready
for the mysterious Prince Karl, on whatever side he might arrive;--and
disregarding the Pandours in comparison.

The points of inrush, the tideways of these Pandour Deluges seem to be
mainly three. Direct through the Jablunka, upon Ratibor Country, is
the first and chief; less direct (partly supplied by REFLUENCES from
Ratibor, when Ratibor is found not to answer), a second disembogues by
Jagerndorf; a third, the westernmost, by Landshut. Three main ingresses:
at each of which there fall out little Fights; which are still
celebrated in the Prussian Books, and indeed well deserve reading by
soldiers that would know their trade. In the Ratibor parts, the invasive
leader is a General Karoly, with 12,000 under him, who are the wildest
horde of all: "Karoly lodges in a wood: for himself there is a tent;
his companions sleep under trees, or under the open sky, by the edge of
morasses." [Ranke, iii. 244.] It was against this Karoly and his horde
that Hautcharmoi's little expedition, or express attacking party to
drive them home again, was shot out (8th-2lst April). Which did its work
very prettily; Winterfeld, chief hand in it, crowning the matter by a
"Fight of Wurbitz," [Orlich, ii. 136 (21st April).]--where Winterfeld,
cutting the taproot, in his usual electric way, tumbles Karoly quite
INTO the morasses, and clears the country of him for a time. For a time;
though for a time only;--Karoly or others returning in a week or two,
to a still higher extent of thousands; mischievous as ever in those
Ratibor-Namslau countries. Upon which, Friedrich, finding this an
endless business, and nothing like the most important, gives it up for
the present; calls in his remoter detachments; has his Magazines carted
home to the Fortress Towns,--Karoly trying, once or so, to hinder in
that operation, but only again getting his crown broken. ["Fight of
Mocker," May 4th (Orlich, ii. 141).] Or if carting be too difficult,
still do not waste your Magazine:--Margraf Karl, for instance, is
ordered to Jagerndorf with his Detachment, "to eat the Magazine;" hungry
Pandours looking on, till he finish. On which occasion a renowned little
Fight took place (Fight of Neustadt, or of Jagerndorf-Neustadt), as
shall be mentioned farther on.

So that, for certain weeks to come, the Tolpatcheries had free course,
in those Frontier parts; and were left to rove about, under check only
of the Garrison Towns; Friedrich being obliged to look elsewhere
after higher perils, which were now coming in view. In which favorable
circumstances, Karoly and Consorts did, at last, make one stroke in
those Ratibor countries; that of Kosel, which was greatly consolatory.
[26th May, 1743 (Orlich, ii. 156-158).] "By treachery of an Ensign
who had deserted to them [provoked by rigor of discipline, or some
intolerable thing], they glided stealthily, one night, across the
ditches, into Kosel" (a half-fortified place, Prussian works only
half finished): which, being the Key of the Oder in those parts, they
reckoned a glorious conquest; of good omen and worthy of TE-DEUMS at
Vienna. And they did eagerly, without the least molestation, labor
to complete the Prussian works at Kosel: "One garrison already
ours!"--which was not had from them without battering (and I believe,
burning), when General von Nassau came to inquire after it; in Autumn
next.

Friedrich had always hoped that the Saxons, who are not yet in declared
War with him, though bound by Treaty to assist the Queen of Hungary
under certain conditions, would not venture on actual Invasion of his
Territories; but in this, as readers anticipate, Friedrich finds himself
mistaken. Weissenfels is hastening from the Leitmeritz northwestern
quarter, where he has wintered, to join Prince Karl, who is gathering
himself from Olmutz and his southeastern home region; their full
intention is to invade Silesia together, and they hope now at length to
make an end of Friedrich and it. These Pandour hordes, supported by the
necessary grenadiers and cannoniers, are sent as vanguard; these cannot
themselves beat him; but they may induce him (which they do not) to
divide his Force; they may, in part, burn him away as by slow fire,
after which he will be the easier to beat. Instead of which, Friedrich,
leaving the Pandours to their luck, lies concentrated in Neisse Valley;
watching, with all his faculties, Prince Karl's own advent (coming on
like Fate, indubitable, yet involved in mysteries hitherto); and is
perilously sensible that only in giving that a good reception is there
any hope left him.

Prince Karl "who arrived in Olmutz April 30th," commands in chief
again,--saddened, poor man, by the loss of his young Wife, in December
last; willing to still his grief in action for the cause SHE loved;--but
old Traun is not with him this year: which is a still more material
circumstance. Traun is to go this year, under cloak not of Prince Karl,
but of Grand-Duke Franz, to clear those Frankfurt Countries for
the KAISERWAHL and him. Prince Conti lies there, with his famous
"Middle-Rhine Army" (D'Ahremberg, from the western parts, not nearly so
diligent upon him as one could wish); and must, at all rates, be cleared
away. Traun, taking command of Bathyani's Army (now that it has finished
the Bavarian job), is preparing to push down upon Conti, while Bathyani
(who is to supersede the laggard D'Ahremberg) shall push vigorously
up;--and before summer is over, we shall hear of Traun again, and Conti
will have heard!--

Friedrich's indignation, on learning that the Saxons were actually on
march, and gradually that they intended to invade him, was great; and
the whole matter is portentously enigmatic to him, as he lies vigilant
in Neisse Valley, waiting on the When and the How. Indignation;--and
yet there is need of caution withal. To be ready for events, the Old
Dessauer has, as one sure measure, been requested to take charge, once
more, of a "Camp of Observation" on the Saxon Frontier (as of old, in
1741); and has given his consent: ["April 25th" consents (Orlich, ii.
130).] "Camp of Magdeburg," "Camp of Dieskau;" for it had various names
and figures; checkings of your hand, then layings of it on, heavier,
lighter and again heavier, according to one's various READINGS of the
Saxon Mystery; and we shall hear enough about it, intermittently, till
December coming: when it ended in a way we shall not forget!--On which
take this Note:--

"The Camp of Observation was to have begun May 1st; did begin somewhat
later, 'near Magdeburg,' not too close on the Frontier, nor in too
alarming strength; was reinforced to about 30,000; in which state
[middle of August] it stept forward to Wieskau, then to Dieskau,
close on the Saxon Border; and became,--with a Saxon Camp lying close
opposite, and War formally threatened, or almost declared, on Saxony
by Friedrich,--an alarmingly serious matter. Friedrich, however, again
checked his hand; and did not consummate till November-December. But
did then consummate; greatly against his will; and in a way
flamingly visible to all men!" [Orlich, ii. 130, 209, 210:
_Helden-Geschichte,_ ii. 1224-1226; i. 1117.]

Friedrich's own incidental utterances (what more we have of Fractions
from the Podewils Letters), in such portentous aspect of affairs, may
now be worth giving. It is not now to Jordan that he writes, gayly
unbosoming himself, as in the First War,--poor Jordan lies languishing,
these many months; consumptive, too evidently dying:--Not to Jordan,
this time; nor is the theme "GLOIRE" now, but a far different!



FRIEDRICH TO PODEWILS (as before, April-May, 1745).

April 20th or so, Orders are come to Berlin (orders, to Podewils's
horror at such a thought), Whitherward, should Berlin be assaulted,
the Official Boards, the Preciosities and household gods are to betake
themselves:--to Magdeburg, all these, which is an impregnable place;
to Stettin, the Two Queens and Royal Family, if they like it better.
Podewils in horror, "hair standing on end," writes thereupon to Eichel,
That he hopes the management, "in a certain contingency," will be given
to Minister Boden; he Podewils, with his hair in that posture, being
quite unequal to it. Friedrich answers:--

"APRIL 26th.... 'I can understand how you are getting uneasy, you
Berliners. I have the most to lose of you all; but I am quiet, and
prepared for events. If the Saxons take part,' as they surely will, 'in
the Invasion of Silesia, and we beat them, I am determined to plunge
into Saxony. For great maladies, there need great remedies. Either
I will maintain my all, or else lose my all. [Hear it, friend; and
understand it,--with hair lying flat!] It is true, the disaffection of
the Russian Court, on such trifling grounds, was not to be expected; and
great misfortune can befall us. Well; a year or two sooner, a year or
two later,--it is not worth one's while to bother about the very worst.
If things take the better turn, our condition will be surer and firmer
than it was before. If we have nothing to reproach ourselves with,
neither need we fret and plague ourselves about bad events, which can
happen to any man.'--'I am causing despatch a secret Order for Boden [on
YOU know what], which you will not deliver him till I give sign.'"--On
hearing of the Peace of Fussen, perhaps a day or so later, Friedrich
again writes:--

"APRIL [no distinct date; Neisse still? QUITS Neisse, April 28th].
... Peace of Fussen, Bavaria turned against me? 'I can say nothing to
it,--except, There has come what had to come. To me remains only
to possess myself in patience. If all alliances, resources, and
negotiations fail, and all conjunctures go against me, I prefer to
perish with honor, rather than lead an inglorious life deprived of all
dignity. My ambition whispers me that I have done more than another to
the building up of my House, and have played a distinguished part among
the crowned heads of Europe. To maintain myself there, has become as it
were a personal duty; which I will fulfil at the expense of my happiness
and my life. I have no choice left: I will maintain my power, or it
may go to ruin, and the Prussian name be buried under it. If the enemy
attempt anything upon us, we will either beat him, or we will all
be hewed to pieces, for the sake of our Country, and the renown of
Brandenburg. No other counsel can I listen to.'"

SAME LETTER, OR ANOTHER? (Herr Ranke having his caprices!)... "You are a
good man, my Podewils, and do what can be expected of you" (Podewils
has been apologizing for his terrors; and referring hopefully "to
Providence"): "Perform faithfully the given work on your side, as I on
mine; for the rest, let what you call 'Providence' decide as it
likes [UNE PROVIDENCE AVEUGLE? Ranke, who alone knows, gives "BLINDE
VORSEHUNG." What an utterance, on the part of this little Titan!
Consider it as exceptional with him, unusual, accidental to the hard
moment, and perhaps not so impious as it looks!]--Neither our prudence
nor our courage shall be liable to blame; but only circumstances that
would not favor us....

"I prepare myself for every event. Fortune may be kind or be unkind, it
shall neither dishearten me nor uplift me. If I am to perish, let it
be with honor, and sword in hand. What the issue is to be--Well, what
pleases Heaven, or the Other Party (J'AI JETE LE BONNET PAR DESSUS LES
MOULINS)! Adieu, my dear Podewils; become as good a philosopher as
you are a politician; and learn from a man who does not go to Elsner's
Preaching [fashionable at the time], that one must oppose to ill fortune
a brow of iron; and, during this life, renounce all happiness, all
acquisitions, possessions and lying shows, none of which will follow us
beyond the grave." [Ranke, iii. pp. 238-241.]

"By what points the Austrian-Saxon Armament will come through upon us?
Together will it be, or separately? Saxons from the Lausitz, Austrians
from Bohmen, enclosing us between two fires?"--were enigmatic questions
with Friedrich; and the Saxons especially are an enigma. But that come
they will, that these Pandours are their preliminary veiling-apparatus
as usual, is evident to him; and that he must not spend himself upon
Pandours; but coalesce, and lie ready for the main wrestle. So that from
April 28th, as above noticed, Friedrich has gone into cantonments, some
way up the Neisse Valley, westward of Neisse Town; and is calling in his
outposts, his detachments; emptying his Frontier Magazines;--abandoning
his Upper-Silesian Frontier more and more, and in the end altogether, to
the Pandour hordes; a small matter they, compared to the grand Invasion
which is coming on. Here, with shiftings up the Neisse Valley, he
lies till the end of May; watching Argus-like, and scanning with every
faculty the Austrian-Saxon motions and intentions, until at length they
become clear to him, and we shall see how he deals with them.

His own lodging, or head-quarter, most of this time (4th May-27th
May), is in the pleasant Abbey of Camenz (mythic scene of that
BAUMGARTEN-SKIRMISH business, in the First Silesian War). He has
excellent Tobias Stusche for company in leisure hours; and the outlook
of bright Spring all round him, flowering into gorgeous Summer, as he
hurries about on his many occasions, not of an idyllic nature. [Orlich,
ii. 139; Ranke, iii. 242-249.] But his Army is getting into excellent
completeness of number, health, equipment, and altogether such a spirit
as he could wish. May 22d, here is another snatch from some Note to
Podewils, from this balmy Locality, potential with such explosions of
another kind. CAMENZ, MAY 22d.... "The Enemies are making movements; but
nothing like enough as yet for our guessing their designs. Till we see,
therefore, the thunder lies quiet in us (LA FOUDRE REPOSE EN MES MAINS).
Ah, could we but have a Day like that May Eleventh!" [Ranke, iii. 248
n.]

What "that May Eleventh" is or was? Readers are curious to know;
especially English readers, who guess FONTENOY. And Historic Art, if she
were strict, would decline to inform them at any length; for really
the thing is no better than a "Victory on the Scamander, and a Siege of
Pekin" (as a certain observer did afterwards define it), in reference
to the matter now on hand! Well, Pharsalia, Arbela, the Scamander,
Armageddon, and so many Battles and Victories being luminous, by study,
to cultivated Englishmen, and one's own Fontenoy such a mystery and
riddle,--Art, after consideration, reluctantly consents to be indulgent;
will produce from her Paper Imbroglios a slight Piece on the subject,
and print instead of burning.



Chapter VIII.--THE MARTIAL BOY AND HIS ENGLISH versus THE LAWS OF
NATURE.

"Glorious Campaign in the Netherlands, Siege of Tournay, final ruin
of the Dutch Barrier!" this is the French program for Season 1745,--no
Belleisle to contradict it; Belleisle secure at Windsor, who might have
leant more towards German enterprises. And to this his Britannic Majesty
(small gain to him from that adroitness in the Harz, last winter!) has
to make front. And is strenuously doing so, by all methods; especially
by heroic expenditure of money, and ditto exposure of his Martial Boy.
Poor old Wade, last year,--perhaps Wade did suffer, as he alleged,
from "want of sufficient authority in that mixed Army"? Well, here is a
Prince of the Blood, Royal Highness of Cumberland, to command in
chief. With a Konigseck to dry-nurse him, may not Royal Highness, luck
favoring, do very well? Luck did not favor; Britannic Majesty, neither
in the Netherlands over seas, nor at home (strange new domestic wool, of
a tarry HIGHLAND nature, being thrown him to card, on the sudden!), made
a good Campaign, but a bad. And again a bad (1746) and again (1747),
ever again, till he pleased to cease altogether. Of which distressing
objects we propose that the following one glimpse be our last.



BATTLE OF FONTENOY (11th May, 1745).

... "In the end of April, Marechal de Saxe, now become very famous for
his sieges in the Netherlands, opened trenches before Tournay; King
Louis, with his Dauphin, not to speak of mistresses, play-actors and
cookery apparatus (in wagons innumerable), hastens to be there. A
fighting Army, say of 70,000, besides the garrisons; and great things,
it is expected, will be done; Tournay, in spite of strong works and
Dutch garrison of 9,000, to be taken in the first place.

"Of the Siege, which was difficult and ardent, we will remember nothing,
except the mischance that befell a certain 'Marquis de Talleyrand'
and his men, in the trenches, one night. Night of the 8th-9th May, by
carelessness of somebody, a spark got into the Marquis's powder, two
powder-barrels that there were; and, with horrible crash, sent eighty
men, Marquis Talleyrand and Engineer Du Mazis among them, aloft into the
other world; raining down their limbs into the covered way, where
the Dutch were very inhuman to them, and provoked us to retaliate.
[Espagnac, ii. 27.] Du Mazis I do not know; but Marquis de Talleyrand
turns out, on study of the French Peerages, to be Uncle of a lame little
Boy, who became Right Reverend Tallyrand under singular conditions, and
has made the name very current in after-times!--

"Hearing of this Siege, the Duke of Cumberland hastened over from
England, with intent to raise the same. Mustered his 'Allied Army' (once
called 'Pragmatic'),--self at the head of it; old Count Konigseck,
who was NOT burnt at Chotusitz, commanding the small Austrian quota
[Austrians mainly are gone laggarding with D'Ahremberg up the Rhine];
and a Prince of Waldeck the Dutch,--on the plain of Anderlecht near
Brussels, May 4th; [Anonymous, _Life of Cumberland,_ p. 180; Espagnac,
ii. 26.] and found all things tolerably complete. Upon which,
straightway, his Royal Highness, 60,000 strong let us say, set forth; by
slowish marches, and a route somewhat leftward of the great Tournay Road
[no place on it, except perhaps STEENKERKE, ever heard of by an English
reader]; and on Sunday, 9th May, [Espagnac, ii. 27.] precisely on the
morrow after poor Talleyrand had gone aloft, reached certain final
Villages: Vezon, Maubray, where he encamps, Briffoeil to rear; Camp
looking towards Tournay and the setting sun,--with Fontenoy short
way ahead, and Antoine to left of it, and Barry with its Woods to
right:--small peaceable Villages, which become famous in the Newspapers
shortly after. [Patch of Map at p. 440.] Royal Highness, resting here
at Vezon, is but some six or seven miles from Tournay; in low undulating
Country, woody here and there, not without threads of running water,
and with frequent Villages and their adjuncts: the part of it now
interesting to us lies all between the Brussels-Tournay Road and
the Scheld River,--all in immediate front of his Royal Highness,--to
southeastward from beleaguered Tournay, where said Road and River
intersect. How shall he make some impression on the Siege of Tournay?
That is now the question; and his Royal Highness struggles to manoeuvre
accordingly.

"Marechal de Saxe, whose habit is much that of vigilance, forethought,
sagacious precaution, singular in so dissolute a man, has neglected
nothing on this occasion. He knows every foot of the ground, having
sieged here, in his boyhood, once before. Leaving the siege-trenches at
Tournay, under charge of a ten or fifteen thousand, he has taken camp
here; still with superior force (56,000 as they count, Royal Highness
being only 50,000 ranked), barring Royal Highness's way. Tournay, or
at least the Marechal's trenches there, are on the right bank of the
Scheld; which flows from southeast, securing all on that hand. The broad
Brussels Highway comes in to him from the east;--north of that he has
nothing to fear, the ground being cut with bogs; no getting through
upon him, that way, to Tournay and what he calls the 'Under Scheld.' The
'Upper Scheld' too, avail them nothing. There is only that triangle
to the southeast, between Road and River, where the Enemy is now
manoeuvring in front of him, from which damage can well come; and he has
done his best to be secure there. Four villages or hamlets, close to
the Scheld and onwards to the Great Road,--Antoine, Fontenoy, Barry,
Ramecroix, with their lanes and boscages,--make a kind of circular base
to his triangle; base of some six or eight miles; with hollows in it,
brooks, and northward a considerable Wood [BOIS DE BARRY, enveloping
Barry and Ramecroix, which do not prove of much interest to us, though
the BOIS does of a good deal]. In and before each of those villages
are posts and defences; in Antoine and Fontenoy elaborate redoubts,
batteries, redans connecting: in the Wood (BOIS DE BARRY), an abattis,
or wall of felled trees, as well as cannon; and at the point of the
Wood, well within double range of Fontenoy, is a Redoubt, called of Eu
(REDOUTE D'EU, from the regiment occupying it), which will much concern
his Royal Highness and us. Saxe has a hundred pieces of cannon [say the
English, which is correct], consummately disposed along this space; no
ingress possible anywhere, except through the cannon's throat; torrents
of fire and cross-fire playing on you. He is armed to the teeth, as they
say; and has his 56,000 arranged according to the best rules of tactics,
behind this murderous line of works. If his Royal Highness think of
breaking in, he may count on a very warm reception indeed.

"Saxe is only afraid his Royal Highness will not. Outside of these
lines, with a 50,000 dashing fiercely round us, under any kind of
leading; pouncing on our convoys; harassing and sieging US,--our siege
of Toumay were a sad outlook. And this is old Austrian Konigseck's
opinion, too; though, they say, Waldeck and the Dutch (impetuous in
theory at least) opined otherwise, and strengthened Royal Highness's
view. Two young men against one old: 'Be it so, then!' His Royal
Highness, resolute for getting in, manoeuvres and investigates,
all Monday 10th; his cannon is not to arrive completely till night;
otherwise he would be for breaking in at once: a fearless young man,
fearless as ever his poor Father was; certainly a man SANS PEUY, this
one too; whether of much AVIS, we shall see anon.

"Tuesday morning early, 11th May, 1745, cannon being up, and
dispositions made, his Royal Highness sallies out; sees his men taking
their ground: Dutch and Austrians to the left, chiefly opposite Antoine;
English, with some Hanoverians, in the centre and to the right;
infantry in front, facing Fontenoy, cavalry to rear flanking the Wood
of Barry,--Konigseck, Ligonier and others able, assisting to plant
them advantageously; cannon going, on both sides, the while; radiant
enthusiasm, SANS PEUR ET SANS AVIS, looking from his Royal Highness's
face. He has been on horseback since two in the morning; cannon started
thundering between five and six,--has killed chivalrous Grammont over
yonder (the Grammont of Dettingen), almost at the first volley. And
now about the time when ploughers breakfast (eight A.M., no ploughing
hereabouts to-day!), begins the attack, simultaneously or in swift
succession, on the various batteries which it will be necessary to
attack and storm.

"The attacks took place; but none of them succeeded. Dutch and
Austrians, on the extreme left, were to have stormed Antoine by the edge
of the River; that was their main task; right skirt of them to help US
meanwhile with Fontenoy. And they advanced, accordingly; but found
the shot from Antoine too fierce: especially when a subsidiary battery
opened from across the River, and took them in flank, the Dutch and
Austrians felt astonished; and hastily drew aside, under some sheltering
mound or earthwork they had found for themselves, or prudently thrown
up the night before. There, under their earthwork, stood the Dutch
and Austrians; patiently expecting a fitter time,--which indeed never
occurred; for always, the instant they drew out, the batteries from
Antoine, and from across the River, instantly opened upon them, and they
had to draw in again. So that they stood there, in a manner, all day;
and so to speak did nothing but patiently expect when it should be time
to run. For which they were loudly censured, and deservedly. Antoine is
and remains a total failure on the part of the Dutch and Austrians.

"Royal Highness in person, with his English, was to attack
Fontenoy;--and is doing so, by battery and storm, at various points;
with emphasis, though without result. As preliminary, at an early stage
he had sent forward on the right, by the Wood of Barry, a Brigadier
Ingoldsby 'with Semple's Highlanders' and other force, to silence 'that
redoubt yonder at the point of the Wood,'--redoubt, fort, or whatever it
be (famous REDOUTE D'EU, as it turned out!),--which guards Fontenoy to
north, and will take us in flank, nay in rear, as we storm the cannon of
the Village. Ingoldsby, speed imperative on him, pushed into the Wood;
found French light-troops ('God knows how many of them!') prowling
about there; found the Redoubt a terribly strong thing, with ditch,
drawbridge, what not; spent thirty or forty of his Highlanders, in
some frantic attempt on it by rule of thumb;--and found 'He would need
artillery' and other things. In short, Ingoldsby, hasten what he might,
could not perfect the preparations to his mind, had to wait for this and
for that; and did not storm the Redoubt d'Eu at all; but hung fire, in
an unaccountable manner. For which he had to answer (to Court-Martial,
still more to the Newspapers) afterwards; and prove that it was
misfortune merely, or misfortune and stupidity combined. Too evident,
the REDOUTE D'EU was not taken, then or thenceforth; which might have
proved the saving of the whole affair, could Ingoldsby have managed it.
Royal Highness attacked Fontenoy, and re-attacked, furiously, thrice
over; and had to desist, and find Fontenoy impossible on those terms.

"Here is a piece of work. Repulsed at all those points; and on the left
and on the right, no spirit visible but what deserves repulse! His Royal
Highness blazes into resplendent PLATT-DEUTSCH rage, what we may call
spiritual white-heat, a man SANS PEUR at any rate, and pretty much SANS
AVIS; decides that he must and will be through those lines, if it please
God; that he will not be repulsed at his part of the attack, not he for
one; but will plunge through, by what gap there is [900 yards Voltaire
measures it (_OEuvres,_ xxviii. 150 (SIECLE DE LOUIS QUINZE, c. xv.
"BATAILLE DE FONTENOI,"--elaborately exact on all such points).)]
between Fontenoy and that Redoubt with its laggard Ingoldsby; and see
what the French interior is like! He rallies rapidly, rearranges;
forms himself in thin column or columns [three of them, I think,--which
gradually got crushed into one, as they advanced, under cannon-shot on
both hands),--wheeling his left round, to be rear, his right to be head
of said column or columns. In column, the cannon-shot from Fontenoy
on the left, and Redoubt d'Eu on our right, will tell less on us; and
between these two death-dealing localities, by the hollowest, least
shelterless way discoverable, we mean to penetrate: (Forward, my men,
steady and swift, till we are through the shot-range, and find men to
grapple with, instead of case-shot and projectile iron!' Marechal de
Saxe owned afterwards, 'He should have put an additional redoubt in that
place, but he did not think any Army would try such a thing' (cannon
batteries playing on each hand at 400 yards distance);--nor has any Army
since or before!

"These columns advance, however; through bushy hollows, water-courses,
through what defiles or hollowest grounds there are; endure the
cannon-shot, while they must; trailing their own heavy guns by hand, and
occasionally blasting out of them where the ground favors;--and do, with
indignant patience, wind themselves through, pretty much beyond direct
shot-range of either d'Eu or Fontenoy. And have actually got into the
interior mystery of the French Line of Battle,--which is not a little
astonished to see them there! It is over a kind of blunt ridge, or
rising ground, that they are coming: on the crown of this rising ground,
the French regiment fronting it (GARDES FRANCAISES as it chanced to
be) notices, with surprise, field-cannon pointed the wrong way; actual
British artillery unaccountably showing itself there. Regiment of GARDES
rushes up to seize said field-pieces: but, on the summit, perceives with
amazement that it cannot; that a heavy volley of musketry blazes into
it (killing sixty men); that it will have to rush back again, and report
progress: Huge British force, of unknown extent, is readjusting itself
into column there, and will be upon us on the instant. Here is news!

"News true enough. The head of the English column comes to sight, over
the rising ground, close by: their officers doff their hats, politely
saluting ours, who return the civility: was ever such politeness seen
before? It is a fact; and among the memorablest of this Battle. Nay
a certain English Officer of mark--Lord Charles Hay the name of him,
valued surely in the annals of the Hay and Tweeddale House--steps
forward from the ranks, as if wishing something. Towards whom [says the
accurate Espagnac] Marquis d'Auteroche, grenadier-lieutenant, with air
of polite interrogation, not knowing what he meant, made a step or two:
'Monsieur,' said Lord Charles (LORD CHARLES-HAY), 'bid your people fire
(FAITES TIRER VOS GENS)!' 'NON, MONSIEUR, NOUS NE TIRONS JAMAIS LES
PREMIERS (We never fire first).' [Espagnac, ii. 60 (of the ORIGINAL,
Toulouse, 1789); ii. 48 of the German Translation (Leipzig, 1774), our
usual reference. Voltaire, endlessly informed upon details this time,
is equally express: "MILORD CHARLES HAY, CAPITAINE AUX GARDES ANGLAISES,
CRIA: 'MESSIEURS DES GARDES FRANCAISES, TIREZ!' To which Count
d'Auteroche with a loud voice answered" &c. (_OEuvres,_ vol. xxviii.
p. 155.) See also _Souvenirs du Marquis de Valfons_ (edited by a
Grand-Nephew, Paris, 1860), p. 151;--a poor, considerably noisy and
unclean little Book; which proves unexpectedly worth looking at, in
regard to some of those poor Battles and personages and occurrences: the
Bohemian Belleisle-Broglio part, to my regret, if to no other person's,
has been omitted, as extinct, or undecipherable by the Grand-Nephew.]
After YOU, Sirs! Is not this a bit of modern chivalry? A supreme
politeness in that sniffing pococurante kind; probably the highest point
(or lowest) it ever went to. Which I have often thought of."

It is almost pity to disturb an elegant Historical Passage of this kind,
circulating round the world, in some glory, for a century past: but
there has a small irrefragable Document come to me, which modifies it a
good deal, and reduces matters to the business form. Lord Charles
Hay, "Lieutenant-Colonel," practical Head, "of the First Regiment
of Foot-guards," wrote, about three weeks after (or dictated in sad
spelling, not himself able to write for wounds), a Letter to his
Brother, of which here is an Excerpt at first hand, with only the
spelling altered:... "It was our Regiment that attacked the French
Guards: and when we came within twenty or thirty paces of them, I
advanced before our Regiment; drank to them [to the French, from the
pocket-pistol one carries on such occasions], and told them that we were
the English Guards, and hoped that they would stand till we came quite
up to them, and not swim the Scheld as they did the Mayn at Dettingen
[shameful THIRD-BRIDGE, not of wood, though carpeted with blue cloth
there]! Upon which I immediately turned about to our own Regiment;
speeched them, and made them huzza,"--I hope with a will. "An Officer
[d'Auteroche] came out of the ranks, and tried to make his men huzza;
however, there were not above three or four in their Brigade that did."
["Ath, May ye 20th, o.s." (to John, Fourth Marquis of Tweeddale, last
"Secretary of State for Scotland," and a man of figure in his day):
Letter is at Yester House, East Lothian; Excerpt PENES ME.]...

Very poor counter-huzza. And not the least whisper of that sublime
"After you, Sirs!" but rather, in confused form, of quite the reverse;
Hay having been himself fired into ("fire had begun on my left;" Hay
totally ignorant on which side first),--fired into, rather feebly, and
wounded by those D'Auteroche people, while he was still advancing with
shouldered arms;--upon which, and not till which, he did give it them:
in liberal dose; and quite blew them off the ground, for that day.
From all which, one has to infer, That the mutual salutation by hat was
probably a fact; that, for certain, there was some slight preliminary
talk and gesticulation, but in the Homeric style, by no means in the
Espagnac-French,--not chivalrous epigram at all, mere rough banter, and
what is called "chaffing;"--and in short, that the French Mess-rooms
(with their eloquent talent that way) had rounded off the thing into the
current epigrammatic redaction; the authentic business-form of it being
ruggedly what is now given. Let our Manuscript proceed.

"D'Auteroche declining the first fire,"--or accepting it, if ever
offered, nobody can say,--"the three Guards Regiments, Lord Charles's on
the right, give it him hot and heavy, 'tremendous rolling fire;' so that
D'Auteroche, responding more or less, cannot stand it; but has at once
to rustle into discontinuity, he and his, and roll rapidly out of the
way. And the British Column advances, steadily, terribly, hurling back
all opposition from it; deeper and deeper into the interior mysteries
of the French Host; blasting its way with gunpowder;--in a magnificent
manner. A compact Column, slowly advancing,--apparently of some 16,000
foot. Pauses, readjusts itself a little, when not meddled with; when
meddled with, has cannon, has rolling fire,--delivers from it, in fact,
on both hands such a torrent of deadly continuous fire as was rarely
seen before or since. 'FEU INFERNAL,' the French call it. The French
make vehement resistance. Battalions, squadrons, regiment after
regiment, charge madly on this terrible Column; but rush only on
destruction thereby. Regiment This storms in from the right, regiment
That from the left; have their colonels shot, 'lose the half of their
people;' and hastily draw back again, in a wrecked condition. The
cavalry-horses cannot stand such smoke and blazing; nor indeed, I think,
can the cavaliers. REGIMENT DU ROI rushing on, full gallop, to charge
this Column, got one volley from it [says Espagnac] which brought to the
ground 460 men. Natural enough that horses take the bit between
their teeth; likewise that men take it, and career very madly in such
circumstances!

MAP Chap. VIII, Book 15, PAGE 440 GOES ABOUT HERE--------

"The terrible Column with slow inflexibility advances; cannon (now in
reversed position) from that Redoubt d'Eu ('Shame on you, Ingoldsby!'),
and irregular musketry from Fontenoy side, playing upon it; defeated
regiments making barriers of their dead men and firing there; Column
always closing its gapped ranks, and girdled with insupportable fire.
It ought to have taken Fontenoy and Redoubt d'Eu, say military men; it
ought to have done several things! It has now cut the French fairly in
two;--and Saxe, who is earnestly surveying it a hundred paces ahead,
sends word, conjuring the King to retire instantly,--across the Scheld,
by Calonne Bridge and the strong rear-guard there,--who, however, will
not. King and Dauphin, on horseback both, have stood 'at the Justice
(GALLOWS, in fact) of our Lady of the Woods,' not stirring much,
occasionally shifting to a windmill which is still higher,--ye Heavens,
with what intrepidity, all day!--'a good many country-folk in trees
close behind them.' Country-folk, I suppose, have by this time seen
enough, and are copiously making off: but the King will not, though
things do look dubious.

"In fact, the Battle hangs now upon a hair; the Battle is as good as
lost, thinks Marechal de Saxe. His battle-lines torn in two in that
manner, hovering in ragged clouds over the field, what hope is there in
the Battle? Fontenoy is firing blank, this some time; its cannon-balls
done. Officers, in Antoine, are about withdrawing the artillery,--then
again (on new order) replacing it awhile. All are looking towards the
Scheld Bridge; earnestly entreating his Majesty to withdraw. Had the
Dutch, at this point of time, broken heartily in, as Waldeck was urging
them to do, upon the redoubts of Antoine; or had his Royal Highness the
Duke, for his own behoof, possessed due cavalry or artillery to act upon
these ragged clouds, which hang broken there, very fit for being swept,
were there an artillery-and-horse besom to do it,--in either of these
cases the Battle was the Duke's. And a right fiery victory it would
have been; to make his name famous; and confirm the English in their mad
method of fighting, like Baresarks or Janizaries rather than strategic
human creatures. [See, in Busching's _Magazin,_ xvi. 169 ("Your
illustrious 'Column,' at Fontenoy? It was fortuitous, I say; done like
janizaries;" and so forth), a Criticism worth reading by soldiers.]

"But neither of these contingencies had befallen. The Dutch-Austrian
wing did evince some wish to get possession of Antoine; and drew out a
little; but the guns also awoke upon them; whereupon the Dutch-Austrians
drew in again, thinking the time not come. As for the Duke, he had taken
with him of cannon a good few; but of horse none at all (impossible for
horse, unless Fontenoy and the Redoubt d'Eu were ours!)--and his horse
have been hanging about, in the Wood of Barry all this while, uncertain
what to do; their old Commander being killed withal, and their new a
dubitative person, and no orders left. The Duke had left no orders;
having indeed broken in here, in what we called a spiritual white-heat,
without asking himself much what he would do when in: 'Beat the French,
knock them to powder if I can!'--Meanwhile the French clouds are
reassembling a little: Royal Highness too is readjusting himself, now
got '300 yards ahead of Fontenoy,'--pauses there about half an hour, not
seeing his way farther.

"During which pause, Duc de Richelieu, famous blackguard man, gallops
up to the Marechal, gallops rapidly from Marechal to King; suggesting,
'were cannon brought AHEAD of this close deep Column, might not they
shear it into beautiful destruction; and then a general charge be made?'
So counselled Richelieu: it is said, the Jacobite Irishman, Count Lally
of the Irish Brigade, was prime author of this notion,--a man of tragic
notoriety in time coming. ["Thomas Arthur Lally Comte de Tollendal,"
patronymically "O'MULALLY of TULLINDALLY" (a place somewhere in
Connaught, undiscoverable where, not material where): see our
dropsical friend (in one of his wheeziest states), _King James's Irish
Army-List_ (Dublin, 1855), pp. 594-600.] Whoever was author of it,
Marechal de Saxe adopts it eagerly, King Louis eagerly: swift it becomes
a fact. Universal rally, universal simultaneous charge on both flanks
of the terrible Column: this it might resist, as it has done these two
hours past; but cannon ahead, shearing gaps through it from end to end,
this is what no column can resist;--and only perhaps one of Friedrich's
columns (if even that) with Friedrich's eye upon it, could make its
half-right-about (QUART DE CONVERSION), turn its side to it, and
manoeuvre out of it, in such circumstances. The wrathful English
column, slit into ribbons, can do nothing at manoeuvring; blazes and
rages,--more and more clearly in vain; collapses by degrees, rolls into
ribbon-coils, and winds itself out of the field. Not much chased,--its
cavalry now seeing a job, and issuing from the Wood of Barry to cover
the retreat. Not much chased;--yet with a loss, they say, in all, of
7,000 killed and wounded, and about 2,000 prisoners; French loss being
under 5,000.

"The Dutch and Austrians had found that the fit time was now come, or
taken time by the forelock,--their part of the loss, they said, was a
thousand and odd hundreds. The Battle ended about two o'clock of the
day; had begun about eight. Tuesday, 11th May, 1745: one of the hottest
half-day's works I have known. A thing much to be meditated by the
English mind.--King Louis stept down from the Gallows-Hill of Our Lady;
and KISSED Marechal de Saxe. Saxe was nearly dead of dropsy; could not
sit on horseback, except for minutes; was carried about in a wicker bed;
has had a lead bullet in his mouth, all day, to mitigate the intolerable
thirst. Tournay was soon taken; the Dutch garrison, though strong, and
in a strong place, making no due debate.

"Royal Highness retired upon Ath and Brussels; hovered about, nothing
daunted, he or his: 'Dastard fellows, they would not come out into the
open ground, and try us fairly!' snort indignantly the Gazetteers and
enlightened Public. [Old Newspapers.] Nothing daunted;--but, as it
were, did not do anything farther, this Campaign; except lose Gand, by
negligence VERSUS vigilance, and eat his victuals,--till called home
by the Rebellion Business, in an unexpected manner! Fontenoy was the
nearest approach he ever made to getting victory in a battle; but a
miss too, as they all were. He was nothing like so rash, on subsequent
occasions; but had no better luck; and was beaten in all his
battles--except the immortal Victory of Culloden alone. Which latter
indeed, was it not itself (in the Gazetteer mind) a kind of apotheosis,
or lifting of a man to the immortal gods,--by endless tar-barrels and
beer, for the time being?

"Old Marechal de Noailles was in this Battle; busy about the redans, and
proud to see his Saxe do well. Chivalrous Grammont, too, as we saw,
was there,---killed at the first discharge. Prince de Soubise too (not
killed); a certain Lord George Sackville (hurt slightly,--perhaps had
BETTER have been killed!)--and others known to us, or that will
be known. Army-Surgeon La Mettrie, of busy brain, expert with his
tourniquets and scalpels, but of wildly blusterous heterodox tongue and
ways, is thrice-busy in Hospital this night,--'English and French all
one to you, nay, if anything, the English better!' those are the Royal
orders:--La Mettrie will turn up, in new capacity, still blusterous, at
Berlin, by and by.

"The French made immense explosions of rejoicing over this Victory of
Fontenoy; Voltaire (now a man well at Court) celebrating it in prose and
verse, to an amazing degree (21,000 copies sold in one day); the whole
Nation blazing out over it into illuminations, arcs of triumph and
universal three-times-three:--in short, I think, nearly the heartiest
National Huzza, loud, deep, long-drawn, that the Nation ever gave in
like case. Now rather curious to consider, at this distance of time.
Miraculous Anecdotes, true and not true, are many. Not to mention again
that surprising offer of the first fire to us, what shall we say of the
'two camp-sutlers whom I noticed,' English females of the lowest degree;
'one of whom was busy slitting the gold-lace from a dead Officer, when a
cannon-ball came whistling, and shore her head away. Upon which, without
sound uttered, her neighbor snatched the scissors, and deliberately
proceeded.' [De Hordt, _Memoires,_ i. 108. A FRENCH OFFICER'S ACCOUNT
(translated in _Gentleman's Magazine,_ 1745; where, pp. 246, 250, 291,
313, &c., are many confused details and speculations on this subject).]
A deliberate gloomy people;--unconquerable except by French prowess,
glory to that same!"

Britannic Majesty is not successful this season; Highland Rebellions
rising on him, and much going awry. He is founding his National Debt,
poor Majesty; nothing else to speak of. His poor Army, fighting never so
well in Foreign quarrels,--and generally itself standing the brunt, with
the co-partners looking on till it is time to run (as at Roucoux again
next season, and at Lauffeld next),--can win nothing but hard knocks and
losses. And is defined by mankind,--in phraseology which we have heard
again since then!--as having "the heart of a Lion and the head of an
Ass." [Old Pamphlets, SOEPIUS.] Portentous to contemplate!--

Cape Breton was besieged this Summer, in a creditable manner; and taken.
The one real stroke done upon France this Year, or indeed (except at
sea) throughout the War. "Ruin to their Fisheries, and a clear loss of
1,400,000 pounds a year." Compared with which all these fine "Victories
in Flanders" are a bottle of moonshine. This was actually a kind of
stroke;--and this, one finds, was accomplished, under presidency of a
small squadron of King's ships, by ('New-England Volunteers," on funds
raised by subscription, in the way of joint-stock. A shining Colonial
feat; said to be very perfectly done, both scrip part of it, and
fighting part;) [Adelung, v. 32-35 ("27th June, 1745, after a siege of
forty-nine days"): see "Gibson, _Journal of the Siege;"_ "Mr. Prince
(of the South Church, Boston), THANKSGIVING SERMON (price fourpence);"
&c. &c.: in the Old Newspapers, 1745, 1748, multifarious Notices about
it, and then about the "repayment" of those excellent "joint-stock"
people.]--and might have yielded, what incalculable dividends in
the Fishery way! But had to be given up again, in exchange for the
Netherlands, when Peace came. Alas, your Majesty! Would it be
quite impossible, then, to go direct upon your own sole errand,
the JENKINS'S-EAR one, instead of stumbling about among the Foreign
chimney-pots, far and wide, under nightmares, in this terrible
manner?--Let us to Silesia again.



Chapter IX.--THE AUSTRIAN-SAXON ARMY INVADES SILESIA, ACROSS THE
MOUNTAINS.

Valori, who is to be of Friedrich's Campaign this Year, came posting off
directly in rear of the glorious news of Fontenoy; found Friedrich at
Camenz, rather in spirits than otherwise; and lodged pleasantly with
Abbot Tobias and him, till the Campaign should begin. Two things
surprise Valori: first, the great strength, impregnable as it were,
to which Neisse has been brought since he saw it last,--superlative
condition of that Fortress, and of the Army itself, as it gathers
daily more and more about Frankenstein here:--and then secondly, and
contrariwise, the strangely neglected posture of mountainous or Upper
Silesia, given up to Pandours. Quite submerged, in a manner: Margraf
Karl lies quiet among them at Jagerndorf, "eating his magazine;" General
Hautcharmoi (Winterfeld's late chief in that Wurben affair), with his
small Detachment, still hovers about in those Ratibor parts, "with
the Strong Towns to fall-back upon," or has in effect fallen back
accordingly; and nothing done to coerce the Pandours at all. While
Prince Karl and Weissenfels are daily coming on, in force 100,000, their
intention certain; force, say, about 100,000 regular! Very singular to
Valori.

"Sire, will not you dispute the Passes, then?" asks Valori, amazed: "Not
defend your Mountain rampart, then?" "MON CHER; the Mountain rampart is
three or four hundred miles long; there are twelve or twenty practicable
roads through it. One is kept in darkness, too; endless Pandour doggery
shutting out your daylight:--ill defending such a rampart," answers
Friedrich. "But how, then," persists Valori; "but--?" "One day the King
answered me," says Valori, "'MON AMI, if you want to get the mouse,
don't shut, the trap; leave the trap open (ON LAISSE LA SOURICIERE
OUVERTE)!'" Which was a beam of light to the inquiring thought of
Valori, a military man of some intelligence. [See VALORI, i. 222, 224,
228.]

That, in fact, is Friedrich's purpose privately formed. He means that
the Austrians shall consider him cowed into nothing, as he understands
they already do; that they shall enter Silesia in the notion of chasing
him; and shall, if need be, have the pleasure of chasing him,--till
perhaps a right moment arrive. For he is full of silent finesse, this
young King; soon sees into his man, and can lead him strange dances on
occasion. In no man is there a plentifuler vein of cunning, nor of a
finer kind. Lynx-eyed perspicacity, inexhaustible contrivance, prompt
ingenuity,--a man very dangerous to play with at games of skill. And
it is cunning regulated always by a noble sense of honor, too;
instinctively abhorrent of attorneyism and the swindler element: a
cunning, sharp as the vulpine, yet always strictly human, which is
rather beautiful to see. This is one of Friedrich's marked endowments.
Intellect sun-clear, wholly practical (need not be specially deep),
and entirely loyal to the fact before it; this--if you add rapidity
and energy, prompt weight of stroke, such as was seldom met with--will
render a man very dangerous to his adversary in the game of war.--Here
is the last of our Pandour Adventures for the present:--

"From May 12th, Friedrich had been gathering closer and closer about
Frankenstein; by the end of the month (28th, as it proved) he intends
that all Detachments shall be home, and the Army take Camp there. The
most are home; Margraf Karl, at Jagerndorf, has not yet done eating his
magazine; but he too must come home. Summon the Margraf home:--it is not
doubted he will cut himself through, he and his 12,000; but such is
the swarm of Pandours hovering between him and us, no estafette, or
cleverest letter-bearer, can hope to get across to him. Ziethen with 500
Hussars, he must take the Letter; there is no other way. Ziethen mounts;
fares swiftly forth, towards Neustadt, with his Letter; lodges in
woods; dodges the thick-crowding Tolpatcheries (passes himself off for a
Tolpatchery, say some, and captures Hungarian Staff-Officers who come to
give him orders [Frau van Blumenthal, _Life of De Ziethen,_ pp. 171-181
(extremely romantic; now given up as mythical, for most part): see
Orlich (ii. 150); but also Ranke (iii. 245), Preuss, &c.]); is at
length found out, and furiously set upon, 'Ziethen, Hah!'--but gets
to Jagerndorf, Margraf Karl coming out to the rescue, and delivers his
Letter. 'Home, then, all of us to-morrow!' And so, Saturday, 22d May,
before we get to Neustadt on the way home, there is an authentic passage
of arms, done very brilliantly by Margraf Karl against Pandours and
others.

"To right of us, to left, barring our road, the enemy, 20,000 of
them, stand ranked on heights, in chosen positions; cannon-batteries,
grenadiers, dragoons of Gotha and infinite Pandours: military jungle
bristling far and wide. And you must push it heartily, and likewise
cut the tap-root of it (seize its big guns), or it will not roll away.
Margraf Karl shoots forth his steady infantry ('Silent till you see
the whites of their eyes!'),--his cavalry with new manoeuvres; whose
behavior is worthy of Ziethen himself:--in brief, the jungle is struck
as by a whirlwind, the tap-root of it cut, and rolls simultaneously out
of range, leaving only the Regiment of Gotha, Regiment of Ogilvy and
some Regulars, who also get torn to shreds, and utterly ruined. Seeing
which, the Pandour jungle plunges wholly into the woods, uttering
horrible cries (EN POUSSANT DES CRIS TERRIBLES), says Friedrich.
[ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 106. More specially BERICHTE VON DER AM
22 MAI, 1745 BEY NEUSTADT IN OBER-SCHLESIEN VORGEFALLENER ACTION
(Seyfarth, _Beylage,_ i. 159-166).] Our new cavalry-manoeuvres deserve
praise. Margraf Karl had the honor to gain his Cousin's approbation this
day; and to prove himself, says the Cousin, (worthy of the
grandfather he came from,'--my own great-grandfather; Great Elector,
Friedrich-Wilhelm; whose style of motion at Fehrbellin, or on the ice
of the Frische Haf (soldiers all in sledges, tearing along to be at the
Swedes), was probably somewhat of this kind."...

"Some days ago, Winterfeld had been pushed out to Landshut, with
Detachment of 2,000, to judge a little for himself which way the
Austrians were coming, and to scare off certain Uhlans (the SAXON
species of Tolpatchery), who were threatening to be mischievous
thereabouts. The Uhlans, at sound of Winterfeld, jingled away at once:
but, in a day or two, there came upon him, on the sudden, Pandour
outburst in quite other force;--and in the very hours while Ziethen was
struggling into Jagerndorf, and still more emphatically next day, while
Margraf Karl was handling his Pandours,--Colonel Winterfeld, a hundred
miles to westward lapped among the Mountains, chanced to be dealing
again with the same article. Very busy with it, from 4 o'clock this
morning; likely to give a good account of the job. Steadily defending
Landshut and himself, against the grenadier battalions, cannon and
furious overplus of Pandours (8,000 or 9,000, it is said, six to one
or so in the article of cavalry), which General Nadasti, a scientific
leader of men or Pandours, skilfully and furiously hurls upon Landshut
and him, in an unexpected manner. Colonel Winterfeld had need of all his
heart and energy, in the intricate ground; against the furious overplus
well manoeuvred: but in him too there are manoeuvres; if he fall
back here, it is to rush on double strong there; hour after hour he
inexpugnably defends himself,--till General Stille, Friedrich's old
Tutor, our worthy writing friend, whom we occasionally quote, comes up
with help; and Nadasti is at once brushed home again, with sore smart of
failure, and 'the loss of 600 killed,' among other items. [_Bericht von
der am 21 Mai, 1745 bey Landshut rorgefallener Action, in Feldzuge,_ i.
302-305 (or in Seyfarth, _Beylage,_ i. 155-158); _OEuvres de
Frederic,_ iii. 105; Stille, pp. 120-124 (who misdates, "23d May" for
22d).] Colonel Winterfeld was made Major-General next day, for this
action. Colonel Winterfeld is cutting out a high course for himself,
by his conduct in these employments; solidity, brilliant effectuality,
shining through all he does; his valor and value, his rapid just
insight, fiery energy and nobleness of mind more and more disclosing
themselves,--to one who is a judge of men, and greatly needs for his own
use the first-rate quality in that article."

Friedrich has left the mouse-trap open;--and latterly has been baiting
it with a pleasant spicing of toasted cheese. One of his Spies,
reporting from Prince Karl's quarters, Friedrich has at this time
discovered to be a Double-Spy, reporting thither as well. Double-Spy,
there is an ugly fact;--perhaps not quite convenient to abolish it
by hemp and gibbet; perhaps it could be turned to use, as most facts
can? "Very good, my expert Herr von Schonfeld [that was the
knave's name]; and now of all things, whenever the Prince does get
across,--instant word to us of that! Nothing so important to us. If
he should get BETWEEN us and Breslau, for example, what would the
consequence be!" To this purport Friedrich instructs his Double-Spy;
sends him off, unhanged, to Prince Karl's Camp, to blab this fresh bit
of knowledge. "We likewise," says Friedrich, "ordered some repairs on
the roads leading to Breslau;"--last turn of the hand to our bit of
toasted fragrancy. And Prince Karl is actually striding forward, at
an eager pace:--and Nadasti VERSUS Winterfeld, the other day, could
Winterfeld have guessed it, was the actual vanguard of the march; and
will be up again straightway! Whereupon Winterfeld too is called home;
and all eyes are bent on the Landshut side.

Prince Karl, under these fine omens, had been urgent on the Saxons to be
swift; Saxons under Weissenfels did at last "get their cannon up,"
and we hear of them for certain, in junction with the Austrians, at
Schatzlar, on the Bohemian side of the Giant-Mountains; climbing with
diligence those wizard solitudes and highland wastes. In a word, they
roll across into Silesia, to Landshut (29th May); nothing doubting but
Friedrich has cowered into what retreats he has, as good as desperate of
Silesia, and will probably be first heard of in Breslau, when they get
thither with their sieging guns. No cautious sagacious old Feldmarschall
Traun is in that Host at present; nothing but a Prince Karl, and a
poor Duke of Weissenfels; who are too certain of several things;--very
capable of certainty, and also of doubt, the wrong way of the facts.
Their force is, by strict count, 75,000; and they march from Landshut,
detained a little by provender concerns, on the last day of May.
[Orlich, ii. 146; Ranke, iii. 247; Stenzel, iv. 245.]

May 28th, Friedrich had encamped at Frankenstein; May 30th, he sets
forth northwestward, to be nearer the new scene; encamps at Reichenbach,
that night; pushes forward again, next day, for Schweidnitz, for
Striegau (in all, a shift northwest of some forty miles);--and from June
1st, lies stretched out between Schweidnitz and Striegau, nine miles
long; well hidden in the hollows of the little Rivers thereabouts
(Schweidnitz Water, Striegau Water), with their little knolls and
hills; watching Prince Karl's probable place of egress from the Mountain
Country opposite. His main Camp is from Schweidnitz to Jauernik, some
five miles long; but he has his vanguard up as far as Striegau, Dumoulin
and Winterfeld as vanguard, in good strength, a little way behind or
westward of that Town and Stream; Nassau and his Division are screened
in the Wood called Nonnenbusch (NUN'S BUSH), and there are outposts
sprinkled all about, and vedettes watching from the hill-tops, from
the Stanowitz Foxhill; the Zedlitz "Cowhill," "Winchill:" an Army not
courting observation, but intent very much to observe. Nadasti has
appeared again; at Freyburg, few miles off, on this side of the
Mountains; goes out scouting, reconnoitring; but is "fired at from the
growing corn," and otherwise hoodwinked by false symptoms, and makes
little of that business. Friedrich's Army we will compute at 70,000.
[General-Lieutenant Freiherr Leo von Lutzow, _Die Schlacht von
Hohenfriedbeg_ (Potsdam, 1845), pp. 18, 21.] Not quite equal in number
to Prince Karl's; and, in other particulars, willing and longing that
Prince Karl would arrive, and try its quality.

Friedrich's head-quarter is at Jauernik: he goes daily riding hither,
thither; to the top of the Fuchsberg (FOXHILL at Stanowitz) with eager
spy-glass; daily many times looks with his spy-glass to the ragged peaks
about Bolkenhayn, Kauder, Rohnstock; expecting the throw of the dice
from that part. On Thursday, 3d June: Do you notice that cloud of dust
rising among the peaks over yonder? Dust-cloud mounting higher and
higher. There comes the big crisis, then! There are the combined
Weissenfels and Karl with their Austrian Saxons, issuing proudly from
their stone labyrinth; guns, equipments, baggages, all perfectly brought
through; rich Silesian plain country now fairly at their feet, Breslau
itself but a few marches off:--at sight of all which, the Austrian big
host bursts forth into universal field-music, and shakes out its banners
to the wind. Thursday, 3d June, 1745; a dramatic Entry of something
quite considerable on the Stage of History.

Friedrich, with Nassau and generals round, stands upon the
Fuchsberg,--his remarks not given, his looks or emotions not described
to us, his thought well known,--and looks at it through his TUBUS (or
spy-glass): There they are, then, and the big moment is come! Friedrich
had seen the dust and the manoeuvring of them, deeper in the Hills, from
this same Fuchsberg yesterday, and inferred what was coming; calculated
by what roads or hill-tracks they could issue: and how he, in each case,
was to deal with them; his march-routes are all settled, plank-bridges
repaired, all privately is ready for these proud Austrian musical
gentlemen, here in the hollow. Friedrich has been upon this Fuchsberg
with his TUBUS daily, many times since Monday last: it is our general
observatorium, says Stille, and commands a fine view into the interior
of these Hills. A Fuchsberg which has become notable in the Prussian
maps: "the Stanowitz Fuchsberg," east side of Striegau Water,--let
no tourist mistake himself; for there are two or even three other
Fuchsbergs, a mile or so northward on the western side of that Stream,
which need to be distinguished by epithets, as the Striegau Fuchsberg,
the Graben Fuchsberg, and perhaps still others: comparable to the FOUR
Neisse rivers, three besides the one we know, which occur in this piece
of Country! Our German cousins, I have often sorrowed to find, have
practically a most poor talent for GIVING NAMES; and indeed much,
for ages back, is lying in a sad state of confusion among them. Many
confused things, rotting far and wide, in contradiction to the plainest
laws of Nature; things as well as names! All the welcomer this Prussian
Army, this young Friedrich leading it; they, beyond all earthly entities
of their epoch, are not in a state of confusion, but of most strict
conformity to the laws of Arithmetic and facts of Nature: perhaps a very
blessed phenomenon for Germany in the long-run.

Prince Karl with Weissenfels, General Berlichingen and many plumed
dignitaries, are dining on the Hill-top near Hohenfriedberg: after
having given order about everything, they witness there, over their
wine, the issue of their Columns from the Mountains; which goes on all
afternoon, with field-music, spread banners; and the oldest General
admits he never saw a finer review-manoeuvre, or one better done, if
so well. Thus sit they on the Hill-top (GALGENBERG, not far from the
gallows of the place, says Friedrich), in the beautiful June afternoon.
Silesia lying beautifully azure at their feet; the Zobtenberg, enchanted
Mountain, blue and high on one's eastern horizon; Prussians noticeable
only in weak hussar parties four or five miles off, which vanish in the
hollow grounds again. All intending for Breslau, they, it is
like;--and here, red wine and the excellent manoeuvre going on. "The
Austrian-and-Saxon Army streamed out all afternoon," says a Country
Schoolmaster of those parts, whose Day-book has been preserved, [In
Lutzow, pp. 123-132.] "each regiment or division taking the place
appointed it; all afternoon, till late in the night, submerging the
Country as in a deluge," five miles long of them; taking post at the
foot of the Hills there, from Hohenfriedberg round upon Striegau,
looking towards the morrow's sunrise. To us poor country-folk not a
beautiful sight; their light troops flying ahead, and doing theft and
other mischief at a sad rate.

On the other hand, the Austrian and Saxon gentlemen, from their
Gallows-Hill at Hohenfriedberg, notice, four or five miles in the
distance, opposite them, or a little to the left of opposite, a Body
of Prussian horse and foot, visibly wending northward; like a long
glittering serpent, the glitter of their muskets flashing back yonder
on the afternoon sun and us, as they mount from hollow to height. Ten or
twelve thousand of them; making for Striegau, to appearance. Intending
to bivouac or billet there, and keep some kind of watch over us;
belike with an eye to being rear-guard, on the retreat towards Breslau
to-morrow? Or will they retreat without attempting mischief? Serenity of
Weissenfels engages to seize the heights and proper posts, over
yonder, this night yet; and will take Striegau itself, the first thing,
to-morrow morning.

Yes, your Serenities, those are Prussians in movement: Vanguard Corps of
Dumoulin, Winterfeld;--Rittmeister Seydlitz rides yonder:--and it is not
their notion to retreat without mischief. For there stands, not so far
off, on the Stanowitz Fuchsberg, a brisk little Gentleman, if you could
notice him; with his eyes fixed on you, and plans in the head of him
now getting nearly mature. For certain, he is pushing out that column of
men; and all manner of other columns are getting order to push out,
and take their ground; and to-morrow morning--you will not find him in
retreat! Such are the phenomena in that Striegau-Hohenfriedberg region,
while the sun is bending westward, on Thursday, 3d June, 1745.

"From Hohenfriedberg, which leans against the higher Mountains, there
may be, across to Striegau northeast, which stands well apart from them,
among lower Hills of its own, a distance of about five English miles.
The intervening country is of flat, though upland nature: the first
broad stage, or STAIR-STEP, so to speak, leading down into the general
interior levels of Silesia in those parts. A tract which is now
tolerably dried by draining, but was then marshy as well as bushy:--flat
to the eye, yet must be imperceptibly convexed a little, for the line of
watershed is hereabouts: walk from Hohenfriedberg to Striegau, the
water on your left hand flows, though mainly in ditches or imperceptible
oozings, to the north and west,--there to fall into an eastern fork of
the Roaring Neisse [one of our three new Neisses, which is a very quiet
stream here; runs close by the Mountain base, fed by many torrents,
and must get its name, WUTHENDE or Roaring, from the suddenness of its
floods]: into this, bound northward and westward, run or ooze all waters
on your left hand, as you go to Striegau. Right hand, again, or to
eastward, you will find all sauntering, or running in visible brooks
into Striegau Water [little River notable to us], which comes circling
from the Mountains, past Hohenfriedberg, farther south; and has got to
some force as a stream before it reaches Striegau, and turns abruptly
eastward;--eastward, to join Schweidnitz Water, and form with it the
SECOND stair-step downwards to the Plain Country. Has its Fuchsbergs,
Kuhbergs and little knolls and heights interspersed, on both sides of
it, in the conceivable way.

"So that, looking eastward from the heights of Hohenfriedberg, our broad
stage or stair-step has nothing of the nature of a valley, but rather is
a kind of insensibly swelling plain between two valleys, or hollows,
of small depth; and slopes both ways. Both ways; but MORE towards the
Striegau-Water valley or hollow; and thence, in a lazily undulating
manner, to other hollows and waters farther down. Friedrich's Camp lies
in the next, the Schweidnitz-Water hollow; and is five, or even
nine miles long, from Schweidnitz northward;--much hidden from the
Austrian-Saxon gentlemen at present. No hills farther, mere flat
country, to eastward of that. But to the north, again, about Striegau,
the hollow deepens, narrows; and certain Hills," much notable at
present, "rise to west of Striegau, definite peaked Hills, with granite
quarries in them and basalt blocks atop:--Striegau, it appears, is, in
old Czech dialect, TRZIZA, which means TRIPLE HILL, the 'Town of the
Three Hills.' [Lutzow, p. 28.] An ancient quaint little Town, of perhaps
2,000 souls: brown-gray, the stones of it venerably weathered; has its
wide big market-place, piazza, plain-stones, silent enough except on
market-days: nestles itself compactly in the shelter of its Three Hills,
which screen it from the northwest; and has a picturesque appearance,
its Hills and it, projected against the big Mountain range beyond, as
you approach it from the Plain Country.

"Hohenfriedberg, at the other corner of our battle-stage, on the road
to Landshut, is a Village of no great compass; but sticks pleasantly
together, does not straggle in the usual way; climbs steep against its
Gallows-Hill (now called 'SIEGESBERG, Victory Hill,' with some tower or
steeple-monument on it, built by subscription); and would look better,
if trimmed a little and habitually well swept. The higher Mountain
summits, Landshut way, or still more if you look southeastward,
Glatz-ward, rise blue and huge, remote on your right; to left, the
Roaring Neisse range close at hand, is also picturesque, though less
Alpine in type." [Tourist's Note (1858).]... And of all Hills, the
notablest, just now to us, are those "Three" at Striegau.

Those Three Hills of Striegau his Serenity of Weissenfels is to lay hold
of, this night, with his extreme left, were it once got deployed and
bivouacked. Those Hills, if he can: but Prussian Dumoulin is already
on march thither; and privately has his eye upon them, on Friedrich's
part!--For the rest, this upland platform, insensibly sloping two ways,
and as yet undrained, is of scraggy boggy nature in many places; much
of it damp ground, or sheer morass; better parts of it covered, at this
season, with rank June grass, or greener luxuriance of oats and barley.
A humble peaceable scene; peaceable till this afternoon; dotted, too,
with six or seven poor Hamlets, with scraggy woods, where they have
their fuel; most sleepy littery ploughman Hamlets, sometimes with a
SCHLOSS or Mansion for the owner of the soil (who has absconded in the
present crisis of things), their evening smoke rising rather fainter
than usual; much cookery is not advisable with Uhlans and Tolpatchcs
flying about. Northward between Striegau and the higher Mountains there
is an extensive TEICHWIRTHSCHAFT, or "Pond-Husbandry" (gleaming visible
from Hohenfriedberg Gallows-Hill just now); a combination of stagnant
pools and carp-ponds, the ground much occupied hereabouts with what
they name Carp-Husbandry. Which is all drained away in our time, yet
traceable by the studious:--quaggy congeries of sluices and fish-ponds,
no road through them except on intricate dams; have scrubby thickets
about the border;--this also is very strong ground, if Weissenfels
thought of defence there.

Which Weissenfels does not, but only of attack. He occupies the ground
nevertheless, rearward of this Carp-Husbandry, as becomes a strategic
man; gradually bivouacking all round there, to end on the Three Hills,
were his last regiments got up. The Carp-Husbandry is mainly about
Eisdorf Hamlet:--in Pilgramshayn, where Weissenfels once thought of
lodging, lives our Writing Schoolmaster. The Mountains lie to westward;
flinging longer shadows, as the invasive troops continually deploy, in
that beautiful manner; and coil themselves strategically on the ground,
a bent rope, cordon, or line (THREE lines in depth), reaching from the
front skirts of Hohenfriedberg to the Hills at Striegau again,--terrible
to behold.

In front of Hohenfriedberg, we say, is the extremity or right wing of
the Austrian-Saxon bivouac, or will be when the process is complete;
five miles to northeast, sweeping round upon Striegau region, will be
their left, where mainly are the Saxons,--to nestle upon those Three
Hills of Striegau: whitherward however, Dumoulin, on Friedrich's behalf,
is already on march. Austrian-Saxon bivouac, as is the way in regulated
hosts, can at once become Austrian-Saxon order-of-battle: and then,
probably, on the Chord of that Arc of five miles, the big Fight will
roll to-morrow; Striegau one end of it, Hohenfriedbcrg the other.
Flattish, somewhat elliptic upland, stair-step from the Mountains, as
we called it; tract considerably cut with ditches, carp-husbandries, and
their tufts of wood; line from Striegau to Hohenfriedberg being axis
or main diameter of it, and in general the line of watershed: there,
probably, will the tug of war be. Friedrich, on his Fuchsberg, knows
this; the Austrian-Saxon gentlemen, over their wine on the Gallows-Hill,
do not yet know it, but will know.

It was about four in the afternoon, when Valori, with a companion,
waiting a good while in the King's Tent at Jauernik, at last saw his
Majesty return from the Fuchsberg observatory. Valori and friend have
great news: "Tournay fallen; siege done, your Majesty!" Valori's friend
is one De Latour; who had brought word of Fontenoy ("important victory
on the Scamander," as Friedrich indignantly defined it to himself); and
was bid wait here till this Siege-of-Tournay consummation ("as helpful
to me as the Siege of Pekin!") should supervene. They hasten to salute
his Majesty with the glorious tidings, Hmph! thinks Friedrich: and
we are at death-grips here, little to be helped by your taking Pekin!
However, he lets wit of nothing. "I make my compliments; mean to
fight to-morrow." [Valori, i. 228.] Valori, as old soldier and friend,
volunteers to be there and assist:--Good.

Friedrich, I presume, at this late hour of four, may bc snatching a
morsel of dinner; his orderlies are silently speeding, plans taken,
orders given: To start all, at eight in the evening, for the Bridge
of Striegau; there to cross, and spread to the right and to the left.
Silent, not a word spoken, not a pipe lighted: silently across the
Striegau Water there. A march of three miles for the nearest, who are
here at Jauernik; of nine miles for the farthest about Schweidnitz; at
Schweidnitz leave all your baggage, safe under the guns there. To
the Bridge of Striegau, diligently, silently march along; Bridge of
Striegau, there cross Striegau Water, and deploy to right and to left,
in the way each of you knows. These are Friedrich's orders.

Late in the dusk, Dumoulin and Winterfeld, whom we saw silently on march
some hours ago, have silently glided past Striegau, and got into the
Three-Hill region, which is some furlong or so farther north:--to his
surprise, Dumoulin finds Saxon parties posting themselves thereabouts.
He attacks said Saxon parties; and after some slight tussle, drives them
mostly from their Three Hills; mostly, not altogether; one Saxon Hill
is precipitous on our hither side of it, and we must leave that till the
dawn break. Of the other Heights Dumoulin takes good possession, with
cannon too, to be ready against dawn;--and ranks himself out to leftward
withal, along the plain ground; for he is to be right wing, had the
other troops come up. These are now all under way; astir from Jauernik
and Schweidnitz, silently streaming along; and Dumoulin bivouacs
here,--very silent he: not so silent the Saxons; who are still marching
in, over yonder, to westward of Dumoulin, their rear-guard groping out
its posts as it best can in the dark. Elsewhere, miles and miles along
the foot of the Mountains, Austrian-Saxon watch-fires flame through the
ambrosial night; and it is an impressive sight for Dumoulin,--still more
for the poor Schoolmaster at Pilgramshayn and others, less concerned
than Dumoulin. "It was beautiful," says Stille, who was there, "to see
how the plain about Rohnstock, and all over that way, was ablaze with
thousands of watch-fires (TAUSEND UND ABER TAUSEND); by the light of
these, we could clearly perceive the enemy's troops continually defile
from the Hills the whole night through." [Cited in Seyfarth, i. 630.]

Serenity of Weissenfels, after all, does not lodge at Pilgramshayn; far
in the night, he goes to sleep at Rohnstock, a Schloss and Hamlet on
that fork of Roaring Neisse, by the foot of the Mountains; three or
four miles off, yet handy enough for picking up Striegau the first
thing to-morrow. His Highness Prince Karl lies in Hausdorf, tolerable
quarters, pretty much in the centre of his long bivouac; day's business
well done, and bottle (as one's wont rather is) well enjoyed. Nadasti
has been out scouting; but was pricked into by hussar parties, fired
into from the growing corn; and could make out little, but the image
of his own ideas. Nadasti's ultimate report is, That the Prussians are
perfectly quiet in their camp; from Jauernik to Schweidnitz, watch-fires
all alight, sentries going their rounds. And so they are, in fact;
sentries and watch-fires,--but now nothing else there, a mere shell of
a camp; the men of it streaming steadily along, without speech, without
tobacco; and many of them are across Striegau Bridge by this time!--

It was past eleven, so close and continuous went this march, before
Valori and his Latour, with their carriages and furnitures, could
find an interval, and get well into it. Never will Valori forget the
discipline of these Prussians, and how they marched. Difficult ways; the
hard road is for their artillery; the men march on each side, sometimes
to mid-leg in water,--never mind. Wholly in order, wholly silent; Valori
followed them three leagues close, and there was not one straggler.
Every private man, much more every officer, knows well what grim errand
they are on; and they make no remarks. Steady as Time; and, except that
their shoes are not of felt, silent as he. The Austrian watch-fires glow
silent manifold to leftward yonder; silent overhead are the stars:--the
path of all duty, too, is silent (not about Striegau alone) for every
well-drilled man. To-morrow;--well, to-morrow?

A grimmish feeling against the Saxons is understood to be prevalent
among these men. Bruhl, Weissenfels himself, have been reported talking
high,--"Reduce our King to the size of an Elector again," and other
foolish things;--indeed, grudges have been accumulating for some time.
"KEIN PARDON (No quarter)!" we hear has been a word among the Saxons,
as they came along; the Prussians growl to one another, "Very well then,
None!" Nay Friedrich's general order is, "No prisoners, you cavalry, in
the heat of fight; cavalry, strike at the faces of them: you infantry,
keep your fire till within fifty steps; bayonet withal is to be relied
on." These were Friedrich's last general orders, given in the hollow of
the night, near the foot of that Fuchsberg where he had been so busy all
day; a widish plain space hereabouts, Striegau Bridge now near: he had
lain snme time in his cloak, waiting till the chief generals, with
the heads of their columns, could rendezvous here. He then sprang
on horseback; spoke briefly the essential things (one of them the
above);--"Had meant to be more minute, in regard to positions and the
like; but all is so in darkness, embroiled by the flare of the Austrian
watch-fires, we can make nothing farther of localities at present:
Striegau for right wing, left wing opposite to Hohenfriedberg,--so, and
Striegau Water well to rear of us. Be diligent, exact, all faculties
awake: your own sense, and the Order of Battle which you know, must do
the rest. Forward; steady: can I doubt but you will acquit yourselves
like Prussian men?" And so they march, across the Bridge at Striegau,
south outskirt of the Town,--plank Bridge, I am afraid;--and pour
themselves, to right and to left, continually the livelong night.

To describe the Battle which ensued, Battle named of Striegau or
Hohenfriedberg, excels the power of human talent,--if human talent had
leisure for such employment. It is the huge shock and clash of 70,000
against 70,000, placed in the way we said. An enormous furious SIMALTAS
(or "both-at-once," as the Latins phrase it), spreading over ten square
miles. Rather say, a wide congeries of electric simultaneities; all
ELECTRIC, playing madly into one another; most loud, most mad: the
aspect of which is smoky, thunderous, abstruse; the true SEQUENCES of
which, who shall unravel? There are five accounts of it, all modestly
written, each true-looking from its own place: and a thrice-diligent
Prussian Officer, stationed on the spot in late years, has striven well
to harmonize them all. [Five Accounts: 1. The Prussian Official Account,
in _Helden-Geschichte,_  i. 1098-1102. 2. The Saxon, ib. 1103-1108.
3. The Austrian, ib. 1109-1115. 4. Stille's (ii. 125-133, of English
Translation). 5. Friedrich's own, _OEuvres,_ iii. 108-118. Lutzow, above
cited, is the harmonizer. Besides which, two of value, in _Feldzuge,_ i.
310-323, 328-336; not to mention Cogniazzo, _Confessions of an Austrian
Veeran_ (Breslau, 1788-1791: strictly Anonymous at that time, and
candid, or almost more, to Prussian merit;--still worth reading, here
and throughout), ii. 123-135; &c. &c.] Well worth the study of
military men;--who might make tours towards this and the other great
battle-field, and read such things, were they wise. For us, a feature
or two, in the huge general explosion, to assist the reader's fancy in
conceiving it a little, is all that can be pretended to.



Chapter X.--BATTLE OF HOHENFRIEDBERG.

With the first streak of dawn, the dispute renewed itself between those
Prussians and Saxons who are on the Heights of Striegau. The two Armies
are in contact here; they lie wide apart as yet at the other end.
Cannonading rises here, on both sides, in the dim gray of the morning,
for the possession of these Heights. The Saxons are out-cannonaded and
dislodged, other Saxons start to arms in support: the cry "To arms!"
spreads everywhere, rouses Weissenfels to horseback; and by sunrise a
furious storm of battle has begun, in this part. Hot and fierce on both
sides; charges of horse, shock after shock, bayonet-charges of foot; the
great guns going like Jove's thunder, and the continuous tearing storm
of small guns, very loud indeed: such a noise, as our poor Schoolmaster,
who lives on this spot, thinks he will hear only once again, when
the Last Trumpet sounds! It did indeed, he informs us, resemble the
dissolution of Nature: "For all fell dark too;" a general element
of sulphurous powder-smoke, streaked with dull blazes; and death
and destruction very nigh. What will become of poor pacific mortals
hereabouts? Rittmeister Seydlitz, Winterfeld his patron ride, with
knit brows, in these horse-charges; fiery Rothenburg too; Truchsess von
Waldburg, at the head of his Division,--poor Truchsess known in London
society, a cannon-ball smites the life out of him, and he ended here.

At the first clash of horse and foot, the Saxons fancied they rather
had it; at the second, their horse became distressed; at the third,
they rolled into disorderly heaps. The foot also, stubborn as they
were, could not stand that swift firing, followed by the bayonet and the
sabre; and were forced to give ground. The morning sun shone into their
eyes, too, they say; and there had risen a breath of easterly wind,
which hurled the smoke upon them, so that they could not see. Decidedly
staggering backwards; getting to be taken in flank and ruined, though
poor Weissenfels does his best. About five in the morning, Friedrich
came galloping hitherward; Valori with him: "MON AMI, this is looking
well! This will do, won't it?" The Saxons are fast sinking in the scale;
and did nothing thenceforth but sink ever faster; though they made a
stiff defence, fierce exasperation on both sides; and disputed every
inch. Their position, in these scraggy Woods and Villages, in these
Morasses and Carp-Husbandries, is very strong.

It had proved to be farther north, too, than was expected; so that the
Prussians had to wheel round a little (right wing as a centre, fighting
army as radius) before they could come parallel, and get to work: a
delicate manoeuvre, which they executed to Valori's admiration, here in
the storm of battle; tramp, tramp, velocity increasing from your centre
outwards, till at the end of the radius, the troops are at treble-quick,
fairly running forward, and the line straight all the while. Admirable
to Valori, in the hot whirlwind of battle here. For the great guns go,
in horrid salvos, unabated, and the crackling thunder of the small guns;
"terrible tussling about those Carp-ponds, that quaggy Carp-husbandry,"
says the Schoolmaster, "and the Heavens blotted out in sulphurous
fire-streaked smoke. What had become of us pacific? Some had run in
time, and they were the wisest; others had squatted, who could find a
nook suitable. Most of us had gathered into the Nursery-garden at
the foot of our Village; we sat quaking there,--our prayers grown
tremulously vocal;--in tears and wail, at least the women part. Enemies
made reconcilement with each other," says he, "and dear friends took
farewell." [His Narrative, in Lutzow, UBI SUPRA.] One general Alleleu;
the Last Day, to all appearance, having come. Friedrich, seeing things
in this good posture, gallops to the left again, where much urgently
requires attention from him.

On the Austrian side, Prince Karl, through his morning sleep at
Hausdorf, had heard the cannonading: "Saxons taking Striegau!" thinks
he; a pleasant lullaby enough; and continues to sleep and dream.
Agitated messengers rush in, at last; draw his curtains: "Prussians
all in rank, this side Striegau Water; Saxons beaten, or nearly so, at
Striegau: we must stand to arms, your Highness!"--"To arms, of course,"
answers Karl; and hurries now, what he can, to get everything in motion.
The bivouac itself had been in order of battle; but naturally there is
much to adjust, to put in trim; and the Austrians are not distinguished
for celerity of movement. All the worse for them just now.

On Friedrich's side, so far as I can gather, there have happened two
cross accidents. First, by that wheeling movement, done to Valori's
admiration in the Striegau quarter, the Prussian line has hitched itself
up towards Striegau, has got curved inward, and covers less ground than
was counted on; so that there is like to be some gap in the central
part of;--as in fact there was, in spite of Friedrich's efforts, and
hitchings of battalions and squadrons: an indisputable gap, though it
turned to rich profit for Friedrich; Prince Karl paying no attention to
it. Upon such indisputable gap a wakeful enemy might have done Friedrich
some perilous freak; but Karl was in his bed, as we say;--in a terrible
flurry, too, when out of bed. Nothing was done upon the gap; and
Friedrich had his unexpected profit by it before long.

The second accident is almost worse. Striegau Bridge (of planks, as
I feared), creaking under such a heavy stream of feet and wheels all
night, did at last break, in some degree, and needed to be mended; so
that the rearward regiments, who are to form Friedrich's left wing,
are in painful retard;--and are becoming frightfully necessary, the
Austrians as yet far outflanking us, capable of taking us in flank
with that right wing of theirs! The moment was agitating to a
General-in-chief: Valori will own this young King's bearing was perfect;
not the least flurry, though under such a strain. He has aides-de-camp,
dashing out every-whither with orders, with expedients; Prince Henri,
his younger Brother: galloping the fastest; nay, at last, he begs Valori
himself to gallop, with orders to a certain General Gessler, in whose
Brigade are Dragoons. Which Valori does,--happily without effect on
Gessler; who knows no Valori for an aide-de-camp, and keeps the ground
appointed him; rearward of that gap we talked of.

Happily the Austrian right wing is in no haste to charge. Happily
Ziethen, blocked by that incumbrance of the Bridge mending, "finds a
ford higher up," the assiduous Ziethen; splashes across, other regiments
following; forms in line well leftward; and instead of waiting for the
Austrian charge, charges home upon them, fiercely through the difficult
grounds, No danger of the Austrians outflanking us now; they are
themselves likely to get hard measure on their flank. By the ford and
by the Bridge, all regiments, some of them at treble-quick, get to their
posts still in time. Accident second has passed without damage.
Forward, then; rapid, steady; and reserve your fire till within fifty
paces!--Prinoe Ferdinand of Brunswick (Friedrich's Brother-in-law, a
bright-eyed steady young man, of great heart for fight) tramps forth
with his Division:--steady!--all manner of Divisions tramp forth; and
the hot storm, Ziethen and cavalry dashing upon that right wing of
theirs, kindles here also far and wide.

The Austrian cavalry on this wing and elsewhere, it is clear, were
ill off. "We could not charge the Prussian left wing, say they, partly
because of the morasses that lay between us; and partly [which is
remarkable] because they rushed across and charged us." [Austrian
report, _Helden-Geschichte,_  i. 1113.] Prince Karl is sorry to report
such things of his cavalry; but their behavior was bad and not good.
The first shock threw them wavering; the second,--nothing would persuade
them to dash forth and meet it. High officers commanded, obtested, drew
out pistols, Prince Karl himself shot a fugitive or two,--it was to no
purpose; they wavered worse at every new shock; and at length a shock
came (sixth it was, as the reporter counts) which shook them all into
the wind. Decidedly shy of the Prussians with their new manoeuvres, and
terrible way of coming on, as if sure of beating. In the Saxon quarter,
certain Austrian regiments of horse would not charge at all; merely kept
firing from their carbines, and when the time came ran.

As for the Saxons, they have been beaten these two hours; that is to
say, hopeless these two hours, and getting beaten worse and worse. The
Saxons cannot stand, but neither generally will they run; they dispute
every ditch, morass and tuft of wood, especially every village. Wrecks
of the muddy desperate business last, hour after hour. "I gave my men a
little rest under the garden walls," says one Saxon Gentleman, "or they
would have died, in the heat and thirst and extreme fatigue: I would
have given 100 gulden [10 pounds Sterling] for a glass of water."
[ _Helden-Geschichte,_  ubi supra.] The Prussians push them on, bayonet
in back; inexorable, not to be resisted; slit off whole battalions of
them (prisoners now, and quarter given); take all their guns, or all
that are not sunk in the quagmires;--in fine, drive them, part into the
Mountains direct, part by circuit thither, down upon the rear of the
Austrian fight: through Hausdorf, Seifersdorf and other Mountain gorges,
where we hear no more of them, and shall say no more of them. A sore
stroke for poor old Weissenfels; the last public one he has to take, in
this world, for the poor man died before long. Nobody's blame, he says;
every Saxon man did well; only some Austrian horse-regiments, that we
had among us, were too shy. Adieu to poor old Weissenfels. Luck of war,
what else,--thereby is he in this pass.

And now new Prussian force, its Saxons being well abolished, is pressing
down upon Prince Karl's naked left flank. Yes;--Prince Karl too will
have to go. His cavalry is, for most part, shaken into ragged clouds;
infantry, steady enough men, cannot stand everything. "I have observed,"
says Friedrich, "if you step sharply up to an Austrian battalion [within
fifty paces or so], and pour in your fire well, in about a quarter of
an hour you see the ranks beginning to shake, and jumble towards
indistinctness;" [_Military Instructions._ ] a very hopeful symptom to
you!

It was at this moment that Lieutenant-General Gessler, under whom is the
Dragoon regiment Baireuth, who had kept his place in spite of Valori's
message, determined on a thing,--advised to it by General Schmettau
(younger Schmettau), who was near. Gessler, as we saw, stood in the rear
line, behind that gap (most likely one of several gaps, or wide spaces,
left too wide, as we explained); Gessler, noticing the jumbly condition
of those Austrian battalions, heaped now one upon another in this
part,--motions to the Prussian Infantry to make what farther room
is needful; then dashes through, in two columns (self and
the Dragoon-Colonel heading the one, French Chasot, who is
Lieutenant-Colonel, heading the other), sabre in hand, with
extraordinary impetus and fire, into the belly of these jumbly
Austrians; and slashes them to rags, "twenty battalions of them," in an
altogether unexampled manner. Takes "several thousand prisoners," and
such a haul of standards, kettle-drums and insignia of honor, as was
never got before at one charge. Sixty-seven standards by the tale, for
the regiment (by most All-Gracious Permission) wears, ever after, "67"
upon its cartridge-box, and is allowed to beat the grenadier
march; [Orlich, ii. 179 (173 n., 179 n., slightly wrong);
_Militair-Lexikon,_ ii. 9, iv. 465, 468. See Preuss, i. 212; _OEuvres de
Frederic;_ &c. &c.]--how many kettle-drums memory does not say.

Prince Karl beats retreat, about 8 in the morning; is through
Hohenfriedberg about 10 (cannon covering there, and Nadasti as
rear-guard): back into the Mountains; a thoroughly well-beaten man.
Towards Bolkenhayn, the Saxons and he; their heavy artillery and baggage
had been left safe there. Not much pursued, and gradually rearranging
himself; with thoughts,--no want of thoughts! Came pouring down,
triumphantly invasive, yesterday; returns, on these terms, in about
fifteen hours. Not marching with displayed banners and field-music, this
time; this is a far other march. The mouse-trap had been left open, and
we rashly went in!--Prince Karl's loss, including that of the Saxons
(which is almost equal, though their number in the field was but HALF),
is 9,000 dead and wounded, 7,000 prisoners, 66 cannon, 73 flags and
standards; the Prussian is about 5,000 dead and wounded. [In Orlich (ii.
182) all the details.] Friedrich, at sight of Valori, embraces his GROS
VALORI; says, with a pious emotion in voice and look, "My friend, God
has helped me wonderfully this day!" Actually there was a kind of devout
feeling visible in him, thinks Valori: "A singular mixture, this
Prince, of good qualities and of bad; I never know which preponderates."
[Valori, SOEPIUS.] As is the way with fat Valoris, when they come into
such company.

Friedrich is blamed by some military men, and perhaps himself thought it
questionable, that he did not pursue Prince Karl more sharply. He says
his troops could not; they were worn out with the night's marching and
the day's fighting. He himself may well be worn out. I suppose, for the
last four-and-twenty hours he, of all the contemporary sons of Adam,
has probably been the busiest. Let us rest this day; rest till to-morrow
morning, and be thankful. "So decisive a defeat," writes he to his
Mother (hastily, misdating "6th" June for 4th), "has not been since
Blenheim" [Letter in _OEuvres de Frederic,_ xxvi. 71.] (which is
tolerably true); and "I have made the Princes sign their names," to give
the good Mother assurance of her children in these perils of war. Seldom
has such a deliverance come to a man.



Chapter XI.--CAMP OF CHLUM: FRIEDRICH CANNOT ACHIEVE PEACE.

Friedrich marched, on the morrow, likewise to Bolkenhayn; which the
enemy have just left; our hussars hanging on their rear, and bickering
with Nadasti. Then again on the morrow, Sunday,--"twelve hours of
continuous rain," writes Valori; but there is no down-pour, or distress,
or disturbance that will shake these men from their ranks, writes
Valori. And so it goes on, march after march, the Austrians ahead,
Dumoulin and our hussars infesting their rear, which skilfully defended
itself: through Landshut down into Bohemia; where are new successive
marches, the Prussian quarterstaff stuck into the back of defeated
Austria, "Home with you; farther home!"--and shogging it on,--without
pause, for about a fortnight to come. And then only with temporary
pause; that is to say, with intricate manoeuvrings of a month long,
which shove it to Konigsgratz, its ultimatum, beyond which there is no
getting it. The stages and successive campings, to be found punctually
in the old Books and new, can interest only military readers. Here is a
small theological thing at Landshut, from first hand:--

JUNE 8th, 1745. "The Army followed Dumoulin's Corps, and marched upon
Landshut. On arriving in that neighborhood, the King was surrounded by
a troop of 2,000 Peasants,"--of Protestant persuasion very evidently!
(which is much the prevailing thereabouts),--"who begged permission of
him 'to massacre the Catholics of these parts, and clear the country of
them altogether.' This animosity arose from the persecutions which the
Protestants had suffered during the Austrian domination, when
their churches used to be taken from them and given to the Popish
priests,"--churches and almost their children, such was the anxiety to
make them orthodox. The patience of these peasants had run over; and
now, in the hour of hope, they proposed the above sweeping measure. "The
King was very far from granting them so barbarous a permission. He told
them, 'They ought rather to conform to the Scripture precept, to bless
those that cursed them, and pray for those that despitefully used them;
such was the way to gain the Kingdom of Heaven.' The peasants," rolling
dubious eyes for a moment, "answered, His Majesty was right; and
desisted from their cruel pretension." [_OEuvres de Frederic,_
ii.218.]...--"On Hohenfriedberg Day," says another Witness, "as far as
the sound of the cannon was heard, all round, the Protestants fell on
their knees, praying for victory to the Prussians;" [In Ranke, iii.
259.] and at Breslau that evening, when the "Thirteen trumpeting
Postilions" came tearing in with the news, what an enthusiasm without
limit!

Prince Karl has skill in choosing camps and positions: his Austrians are
much cowed; that is the grievous loss in his late fight. So, from June
8th, when they quit Silesia,--by two roads to go more readily,--all
through that month and the next, Friedrich spread to the due width,
duly pricking into the rear of them, drives the beaten hosts onward and
onward. They do not think of fighting; their one thought is to get into
positions where they can have living conveyed to them, and cannot be
attacked; for the former of which objects, the farther homewards they
go, it is the better. The main pursuit, as I gather, goes leftward from
Landshut, by Friedland,--the Silesian Friedland, once Wallenstein's.
Through rough wild country, the southern slope of the Giant Mountains,
goes that slow pursuit, or the main stream of it, where Friedrich
in person is; intricate savage regions, cut by precipitous rocks and
soaking quagmires, shaggy with woods: watershed between the Upper Elbe
and Middle Oder; Glatz on our left,--with the rain of its mountains
gathering to a Neisse River, eastward, which we know; and on their west
or hither side, to a Mietau, Adler, Aupa and other many-branched feeders
of the Elbe. Most complex military ground, the manoeuvrings on it
endless,--which must be left to the reader's fancy here.

About the end of June, Karl and his Austrians find a place suitable to
their objects: Konigsgratz, a compact little Town, in the nook between
the Elbe and Adler; covered to west and to south by these two streams;
strong enough to east withal; and sure and convenient to the southern
roads and victual. Against which Friedrich's manoeuvres avail nothing;
so that he at last (20th July) crosses Elbe River; takes, he likewise,
an inexpugnable Camp on the opposite shore, at a Village called Chlum;
and lies there, making a mutual dead-lock of it, for six weeks or
more. Of the prior Camps, with their abundance of strategic shufflings,
wheelings, pushings, all issuing in this of Chlum, we say nothing: none
of them,--except the immediately preceding one, called of Nahorzan,
called also of Drewitz (for it was in parts a shifting entity, and flung
the LIMBS of it about, strategically clutching at Konigsgratz),--had any
permanency: let us take Chlum (the longest, and essentially the last in
those parts) as the general summary of them, and alone rememberable by
us. ["Camp of Gross-Parzitz [across the Mietau, to dislodge Prince Karl
from his shelter behind that stream], June 14th:" "Camp of Nahorzan,
June 18th [and abstruse manoeuvrings, of a month, for Konigsgratz]: 20th
July," cross Elbe for Chlum; and lie, yourself also inexpugnable, there.
See _OEuvres de Frederic,_ (iii. 120 et seq.); especially see Orlich
(ii. pp. 193, 194, 203, &c. &c.),--with an amplitude of inorganic
details, sufficient to astonish the robustest memory!]

Friedrich's purposes, at Chlum or previously, are not towards conquests
in Bohemia, nor of fighting farther, if he can help it. But, in the mean
while, he is eating out these Bohemian vicinages; no invasion of Silesia
possible from that quarter soon again. That is one benefit: and he hopes
always his enemies, under screw of military pressure with the one hand,
and offer of the olive-branch with the other, will be induced to grant
him Peace. Britannic Majesty, after Fontenoy and Hohenfriedberg, not to
mention the first rumors of a Jacobite Rebellion, with France to rear of
it, is getting eager to have Friedrich settled with, and withdrawn from
the game again;--the rather, as Friedrich, knowing his man, has ceased
latterly to urge him on the subject. Peace with George the Purseholder,
does not that mean Peace with all the others? Friedrich knows the high
Queen's indignation; but he little guesses, at this time, the humor of
Bruhl and the Polish Majesty. He has never yet sent the Old Dessauer in
upon them; always only keeps him on the slip, at Magdeburg; still
hoping actualities may not be needed. He hopes too, in spite of her
indignation, the Hungarian Majesty, with an Election on hand, with the
Netherlands at such a pass, not to speak of Italy and the Middle Rhine,
will come to moderate views again. On which latter points, his reckoning
was far from correct! Within three months, Britannic Majesty and he did
get to explicit Agreement (CONVENTION OF HANOVER, 26th August): but in
regard to the Polish Majesty and the Hungarian there proved to be no
such result attainable, and quite other methods necessary first!

"Of military transactions in this Camp of Chlum, or in all these
Bohemian-Silesian Camps, for near four months, there is nothing, or as
good as nothing: Chlum has no events; Chlum vigilantly guards itself;
and expects, as the really decisive to it, events that will happen far
away. We are to conceive this military business as a dead-lock;
attended with hussar skirmishes; attacks, defences, of outposts, of
provision-wagons from Moravia or Silesia:--Friedrich has his food from
Silesia chiefly, by several routes, 'convoys come once in the five
days.' His horse-provender he forages; with Tolpatches watching him, and
continual scufflings of fight: 'for hay and glory,' writes one
Prussian Officer, 'I assure you we fight well!' Endless enterprising,
manoeuvring, counter-manoeuvring there at first was; and still is, if
either party stir: but here, in their mutually fixed camps, tacit
mutual observances establish themselves; and amid the rigorous armed
vigilantes, there are traits of human neighborship. As usual in such
cases. The guard-parties do not fire on one another, within certain
limits: a signal that there are dead to bury, or the like, is strictly
respected. On one such occasion it was (June 30th, Camp-of-Nahorzan
time) that Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick--Prince Ferdinand, with a young
Brother Albert volunteering and learning his business here, who are both
Prussian--had a snatch of interview with a third much-loved Brother,
Ludwig, who is in the Austrian service. A Prussian officer, venturing
beyond the limits, had been shot; Ferdinand's message, 'Grant us burial
of him!' found, by chance, Brother Ludwig in command of that Austrian
outpost; who answers: 'Surely;--and beg that I may embrace my Brothers!'
And they rode out, those three, to the space intermediate; talked there
for half an hour, till the burial was done. [Mauvillon, _Geschichte
Ferdinands von Braunschweig-Luneburg,_ i. 118.] Fancy such an interview
between the poor young fellows, the soul of honor each, and tied in that
manner!

"Trenck of the Life-guard was not quite the soul of honor. It was in the
Nahorzan time too that Trenck, who had, in spite of express order to the
contrary, been writing to his Cousin the indigo Pandour, was put under
arrest when found out. 'Wrote merely about horses: purchase of horses,
so help me God!' protests the blusterous Life-guardsman, loud as lungs
will,--whether with truth in them, nobody can say. 'Arrest for breaking
orders!' answers Friedrich, doubting or disbelieving the horses; and
loud Trenck is packed over the Hills to Glatz; to Governor Fouquet, or
Substitute;--where, by not submitting and repenting, by resisting and
rebelling, and ever again doing it, he makes out for himself, with
Fouquet and his other Governors, what kind of life we know! 'GARDEZ
E'TROITEMENT CE DROLE-LA, IL A VOULU DEVENIR PANDOUR AUPRES DE SON ONCLE
(Keep a tight hold of this fine fellow; he wanted to become Pandour
beside his Uncle)!' writes Friedrich:--'Uncle' instead of 'Cousin,' all
one to Friedrich. This he writes with his own hand, on the margin: 28th
June, 1745; the inexorable Records fix that date. [Rodenbeck. iii. 381.
Copy of the Warrant, once PENES ME.] Which I should not mention, except
for another inexorable date (30th September), that is coming; and
the perceptible slight comfort there will be in fixing down a
loud-blustering, extensively fabulous blockhead, still fit for the
Nurseries, to one undeniable premeditated lie, and tar-marking him
therewith, for benefit of more serious readers." As shall be done, were
the 30th of September come!

Here is still something,--if it be not rather nothing, by a great
hand! Date uncertain; Camp-of-Chlum time, pretty far on:... "There are
continual foragings, on both sides; with parties mutually dashing out to
hinder the same. The Prussians have a detached post at Smirzitz; which
is much harassed by Hungarians lurking about, shooting our sentry and
the like. An inventive head contrives this expedient. Stuff a Prussian
uniform with straw; fix it up, by aid of ropes and check-strings, to
stand with musket shouldered, and even to glide about to right and left,
on judicious pulling. So it is done: straw man is made; set upon his
ropes, when the Tolpatches approach; and pensively saunters to and
fro,--his living comrades crouching in the bushes near by. Tolpatches
fire on the walking straw sentry; straw sentry falls flat; Tolpatches
rush in, esurient, triumphant; are exploded in a sharp blast of musketry
from the bushes all round, every wounded man made prisoner;--and come
no more back to that post." Friedrich himself records this little fact:
"slight pleasantry to relieve the reader's mind," says he, in narrating
it. [_OEuvres,_ iii. 123.]--Enough of those small matters, while so
many large are waiting.

June 26th, a month before Chlum, General Nassau had been detached, with
some 8 or 10,000, across Glatz Country, into Upper Silesia, to sweep
that clear again. Hautcharmoi, quitting the Frontier Towns, has joined,
raising him to 15,000; and Nassau is giving excellent account of the
multitudinous Pandour doggeries there; and will retake Kosel, and
have Upper Silesia swept before very long. [Kosel, "September 5th:"
Excellent, lucid and even entertaining Account of Nassau's Expedition,
in the form of DIARY (a model, of its kind), in _Feldzuge,_ iv. 257,
371, 532.] On the other hand, the Election matter (KAISERWAHL, a most
important point) is obviously in threatening, or even in desperate
state! That famed Middle-Rhine Army has gone to the--what shall we say?

JULY 5th-19th, MIDDLE-RHINE COUNTRY. "The first Election-news that
reaches Friedrich is from the Middle-Rhine Country, and of very
bad complexion. Readers remember Traun, and his Bathyanis, and his
intentions upon Conti there. In the end of May, old Traun, things being
all completed in Bavaria, had got on march with his Bavarian Army,
say 40,000, to look into Prince Conti down in those parts; a fact very
interesting to the Prince. Traun held leftward, westward, as if for the
Neckar Valley,--'Perhaps intending to be through upon Elsass, in those
southern undefended portions of the Rhine?' Conti, and his Segur, and
Middle-Rhine Army stood diligently on their guard; got their forces,
defences, apparatuses, hurried southward, from Frankfurt quarter where
they lay on watch, into those Neckar regions. Which seen to be done,
Traun whirled rapidly to rightward, to northward; crossed the Mayn
at Wertheim, wholly leaving the Neckar and its Conti; having weighty
business quite in the other direction,--on the north side of the Mayn,
namely; on the Kinzig River, where Bathyani (who has taken D'Ahremberg's
command below Frankfurt, and means to bestir himself in another than the
D'Ahremberg fashion) is to meet him on a set day. Traun having thus,
by strategic suction, pulled the Middle-Rhine Army out of his and
Bathyani's way, hopes they two will manage a junction on the Kinzig;
after junction they will be a little stronger than Conti, though
decidedly weaker taken one by one. Traun, in the long June days, had
such a march, through the Spessart Forest (Mayn River to his left, with
our old friends Dettingen, Aschaffenburg, far down in the plain), as
was hardly ever known before: pathless wildernesses, rocky steeps and
chasms; the sweltering June sun sending down the upper snows upon him in
the form of muddy slush; so that 'the infantry had to wade haunch-deep
in many of the hollow parts, and nearly all the cavalry lost its
horse-shoes.' A strenuous march; and a well-schemed. For at the Kinzig
River (Conti still far off in the Neckar country), Bathyani punctually
appeared, on the opposite shore; and Traun and he took camp together;
July 5th, at Langen-Selbord (few miles north of Hanau, which we
know);--and rest there; calculating that Conti is now a manageable
quantity;--and comfortably wait till the Grand-Duke arrives. [Adelung,
iv. 421; v. 36.] For this is, theoretically, HIS Army; Grand-Duke Franz
being the Commander's Cloak, this season; as Karl was last,--a right
lucky Cloak he, while Traun lurked under him, not so lucky since! July
13th, Franz arrived; and Traun, under Franz, instantly went into Conti
(now again in those Frankfurt parts); clutched at Conti, Briareus-like,
in a multiform alarming manner: so that Conti lost head; took to mere
retreating, rushing about, burning bridges;--and in fine, July 19th, had
flung himself bodily across the Rhine (clouds of Tolpatches sticking to
him), and left old Traun and his Grand-Duke supreme lord in those parts.
Who did NOT invade Elsass, as was now expected; but lay at Heidelberg,
intending to play pacifically a surer card. All French are out of
Teutschland again; and the game given up. In what a premature and
shameful manner! thinks Friedrich.

"Nominally it was the Grand-Duke that flung Conti over the Rhine; and
delivered Teutschland from its plagues. After which fine feat, salvatory
to the Cause of Liberty, and destructive to French influence, what is
to prevent his election to the Kaisership? Friedrich complains aloud:
'Conti has given it up; you drafted 15,000 from him (for imaginary uses
in the Netherlands),--you have given it up, then! Was that our bargain?'
'We have given it up,' answers D'Argenson the War-minister, writing to
Valori; 'but,'--And supplies, instead of performance according to the
laws of fact, eloquent logic; very superfluous to Friedrich and the said
laws!--Valori, and the French Minister at Dresden, had again been trying
to stir up the Polish Majesty to stand for Kaiser; but of course that
enterprise, eager as the Polish Majesty might be for such a dignity, had
now to collapse, and become totally hopeless. A new offer of
Friedrich's to co-operate had been refused by Bruhl, with a brevity, a
decisiveness--'Thinks me finished (AUX ABOIS),' says Friedrich; 'and not
worth giving terms to, on surrendering!' The foolish little creature;
insolent in the wrong quarter!" [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 128.]

'The German Burden, then,--which surely was mutual, at lowest, and
lately was French altogether,--the French have thrown it off; the French
have dropped their end of the BEARING-POLES (so to speak), and left
Friedrich by himself, to stand or stagger, under the beweltered broken
harness-gear and intolerable weight! That is one's payment for cutting
the rope from their neck last year!--Long since, while the present
Campaign was being prepared for, under such financial pressures,
Friedrich had bethought him, "The French might, at least give me money,
if they can nothing else?"--and he had one day penned a Letter with that
object; but had thrown it into his desk again, "No; not till the very
last extremity, that!" Friedrich did at last despatch the unpleasant
missive: "Service done you in Elsass, let us say little of it; but the
repayment has been zero hitherto: your Bavarian expenses (poor Kaiser
gone, and Peace of Fussen come!) are now ended:--A round sum, say of
600,000 pounds, is becoming indispensable here, if we are to keep on
our feet at all!" Herr Ranke, who has seen the Most Christian King's
response (though in a capricious way), finds "three or four successive
redactions" of the difficult passage; all painfully meaning,
"Impossible, alas!"--painfully adding, "We will try, however!" And,
after due cunctations, Friedrich waiting silent the while,--Louis, Most
Christian King, who had failed in so many things towards Friedrich, does
empower Valori To offer him a subsidy of 600,000 livres a month, till we
see farther. Twenty thousand pounds a month; he hopes this will suffice,
being himself run terribly low. Friedrich's feeling is to be guessed:
"Such a dole might answer to a Landgraf of Hessen-Darmstadt; but to me
is not in the least suitable;"--and flatly refuses it; FIEREMENT, says
Valori. [Ranke, iii. 235, 299 n. (not the least of DATE allowed us in
either case); Valori. i. 240.]

MON GROS VALORI, who could not himself help all this, poor soul, "falls
now into complete disgrace;" waits daily upon Friedrich at the giving
out of the parole, "but frequently his Majesty does not speak to me at
all." Hardly looks at me, or only looks as if I had suddenly become Zero
Incarnate. It is now in these days, I suppose, that Friedrich writes
about the "Scamander Battle" (of Fontenoy), and "Capture of Pekin," by
way of helping one to fight the Austrians according to Treaty. And has
a touch of bitter sarcasm in uttering his complaints against, such
treatment,--the heart of him, I suppose, bitter enough. Most Christian
King has felt this of the Scamander, Friedrich perceives; Louis's next
letter testifies pique;--and of course we are farther from help, on
that side, than ever. "From the STANDE of the Kur-Mark [Brandenburg]
Friedrich was offered a considerable subsidy instead; and joyfully
accepted the same, 'as a loan:'"--paid it punctually back, too; and
never, all his days, forgot it of those STANDE. [Stenzel, iv. 255;
Ranke, &c.]



CAMP OF DIESKAU: BRITANNIC MAJESTY MAKES PEACE, FOR HIMSELF, WITH
FRIEDRICH; BUT CANNOT FOR AUSTRIA OR SAXONY.

About the middle of August, there are certain Saxon phenomena which
awaken dread expectation in the world. Friedrich, watching, Argus-like,
near and far, in his Chlum observatory, has noticed that Prince Karl
is getting reinforced in Konigsgratz; 10,000 lately, 7,000 more
coming;--and contrariwise that the Saxons seem to be straggling off from
him; ebbing away, corps after corps,--towards Saxony, can it be? There
are whispers of "Bavarian auxiliaries" being hired for them, too. And
little Bruhl's late insolence; Bruhl's evident belief that "we are
finished (AUX ABOIS)"? Putting all this together, Friedrich judges--with
an indignation very natural--that there is again some insidious Saxon
mischief, most likely an attack on Brandenburg, in the wind. Friedrich
orders the Old Dessauer, "March into them, delay no longer!" and
publishes a clangorously indignant Manifesto (evidently his own writing,
and coming from the heart): [In Adelung, v. 64-71 (no date; "middle of
August," say the Books).] "How they have, not bound by their Austrian
Treaty, wantonly invaded our Silesia; have, since and before, in spite
of our forbearance, done so many things:--and, in fact, have finally
exhausted our patience; and are forcing us to seek redress and safety by
the natural methods," which they will see how they like!--

Old Leopold advances straightway, as bidden, direct for the Saxon
frontier. To whom Friedrich shoots off detachments,--Prince Dietrich,
with so many thousands, to reinforce Papa; then General Gessler with
so many,--till Papa is 30,000 odd; and could eat Saxony at a mouthful;
nothing whatever being yet ready there on Bruhl's part, though he has
such immense things in the wind!--Nevertheless Friedrich again paused;
did not yet strike. The Saxon question has Russian bug-bears, no end of
complications. His Britannic Majesty, now at Hanover, and his prudent
Harrington with him, are in the act of laboring, with all earnestness,
for a general Agreement with Friedrich. Without farther bitterness,
embroilment and bloodshed: how much preferable for Friedrich! Old
Dessauer, therefore, pauses: "Camp of Dieskau," which we have often
heard of, close on the Saxon Border; stands there, looking over, as with
sword drawn, 30,000 good swords,--but no stroke, not for almost three
months more. In three months, wretched Bruhl had not repented; but, on
the contrary, had completed his preparations, and gone to work;--and the
stroke did fall, as will be seen. That is Bruhl's posture in the matter.
[Ranke, iii. 231, 314.]

To Britannic George, for a good while past, it has been manifest that
the Pragmatic Sanction, in its original form, is an extinct object; that
reconquest of Silesia, and such like, is melancholy moonshine; and that,
in fact, towards fighting the French with effect, it is highly necessary
to make peace with Friedrich of Prussia again. This once more is
George's and his Harrington's fixed view. Friedrich's own wishes are
known, or used to be, ever since the late Kaiser's death,--though
latterly he has fallen silent, and even avoids the topic when offered
(knowing his man)! Herrington has to apply formally to Friedrich's
Minister at Hanover. "Very well, if they are in earnest this time," so
Friedrich instructs his Minister: "My terms are known to you; no change
admissible in the terms;--do not speak with me on it farther: and,
observe, within four weeks, the thing finished, or else broken off!"
[Ranke, iii. 277-281.] And in this sense they are laboring incessantly,
with Austria, with Saxony,--without the least success;--and Excellency
Robinson has again a panting uncomfortable time. Here is a scene
Robinson transacts at Vienna, which gives us a curious face-to-face
glimpse of her Hungarian Majesty, while Friedrich is in his Camp at
Chlum.



SCHONBRUNN, 2d AUGUST, 1745, ROBINSON HAS AUDIENCE OF HER HUNGARIAN
MAJESTY.

Robinson, in a copious sonorous speech (rather apt to be copious, and to
fall into the Parliamentary CANTO-FERMO), sets forth how extremely
ill we Allies are faring on the French hand; nothing done upon Silesia
either; a hopeless matter that,--is it not, your Majesty? And your
Majesty's forces all lying there, in mere dead-lock; and we in such need
of them! "Peace with Prussia is indispensable."--To which her Majesty
listened, in statuesque silence mostly; "never saw her so reserved
before, my Lord."...

ROBINSON.... "'Madam, the Dutch will be obliged to accept Neutrality'
[and plump down again, after such hoisting]!

QUEEN. "'Well, and if they did, they? It would be easier to accommodate
with France itself, and so finish the whole matter, than with Prussia."
My Army could not get to the Netherlands this season. No General of
mine would undertake conducting it at this day of the year. Peace with
Prussia, what good could it do at present?'

ROBINSON. "'England has already found, for subsidies, this year,
1,178,753 pounds. Cannot go on at that rate. Peace with Prussia is one
of the returns the English Nation expects for all it has done.'

QUEEN. "'I must have Silesia again: without Silesia the Kaiserhood were
an empty title. "Or would you have us administer it under the guardiancy
of Prussia!"'...

ROBINSON. "'In Bohemia itself things don't look well; nothing done on
Friedrich: your Saxons seem to be qnarrelling with you, and going home.'

QUEEN. "'Prince Karl is himself capable of fighting the Prussians again.
Till that, do not speak to me of Peace! Grant me only till October!'

ROBINSON. "'Prussia will help the Grand-Duke to Kaisership.'

QUEEN. "'The Grand-Duke is not so ambitions of an empty honor as to
engage in it under the tutelage of Prussia. Consider farther: the
Imperial dignity, is it compatible with the fatal deprivation of
Silesia? "One other battle, I say! Good God, give me only till the month
of October!"'

ROBINSON. "'A battle, Madam, if won, won't reconquer Silesia; if lost,
your Majesty is ruined at home.'

QUEEN. "'DUSSE'JE CONCLURE AVEC LUI LE LENDEMAIN, JE LUI LIVRERAIS
BATAILLE CE SOIR (Had I to agree with him to-morrow, I would try him in
a battle this evening)!'" [Robinson's Despatch, 4th August, 1745. Ranke,
iii. 287; Raumer, pp. 161, 162.]

Her Majesty is not to be hindered; deaf to Robinson, to her Britannic
George who pays the money. "Cruel man, is that what you call keeping the
Pragmatic Sanction; dismembering me of Province after Province, now in
Germany, then in Italy, on pretext of necessity? Has not England money,
then? Does not England love the Cause of Liberty? Give me till October!"
Her Majesty did take till October, and later, as we shall see; poor
George not able to hinder, by power of the purse or otherwise: who can
hinder high females, or low, when they get into their humors? Much of
this Austrian obstinacy, think impartial persons, was of female nature.
We shall see what profit her Majesty made by taking till October.

As for George, the time being run, and her Majesty and Saxony
unpersuadable, he determined to accept Friedrich's terms himself, in
hope of gradually bringing the others to do it. August 26th, at Hanover,
there is signed a CONVENTION OF HANOVER between Friedrich and him:
"Peace on the old Breslau-Berlin terms,--precisely the same terms, but
Britannic Majesty to have them guaranteed by All the Powers, on the
General Peace coming,--so that there be no snake-procedure henceforth."
Silesia Friedrich's without fail, dear Hanover unmolested even by a
thought of Friedrich's;--and her Hungarian Majesty to be invited, nay
urged by every feasible method, to accede. [Adelung, v. 75; is "in
Rousset, xix. 441;" in &c. &c.] Which done, Britannic Majesty--for
there has hung itself out, in the Scotch Highlands, the other day
("Glenfinlas, August 12th"), a certain Standard "TANDEM TRIUMPHANS," and
unpleasant things are imminent!--hurries home at his best pace, and has
his hands full there, for some time. On Austria, on Saxony, he could
not prevail: "By no manner of means!" answered they; and went their own
road,--jingling his Britannic subsidies in their pocket; regardless of
the once Supreme Jove, who is sunk now to a very different figure on the
German boards.

Friedrich's outlook is very bad: such a War to go on, and not even
finance to do it with. His intimates, his Rothenburg one time, have
"found him sunk in gloomy thought." But he wears a bright face usually.
No wavering or doubting in him, his mind made up; which is a great help
that way. Friedrich indicates, and has indicated everywhere, for many
months, that Peace, precisely on the old footing, is all he wants: "The
Kaiser being dead, whom I took up arms to defend, what farther object is
there?" says he. "Renounce Silesia, more honestly than last time; engage
to have it guaranteed by everybody at the General Peace (or perhaps
Hohenfriedberg will help to guarantee it),--and I march home!" My money
is running down, privately thinks he; guarantee Silesia, and I shall
be glad to go. If not, I must raise money somehow; melt the big silver
balustrades at Berlin, borrow from the STANDE, or do something; and, in
fact, must stand here, unless Silesia is guaranteed, and struggle till I
die.

That latter withal is still privately Friedrich's thought. Under his
light air, he carries unspoken that grimly clear determination, at all
times, now and henceforth; and it is an immense help to the guidance
of him. An indispensable, indeed. No king or man, attempting anything
considerable in this world, need expect to achieve it except, tacitly,
on those same terms, "I will achieve it or die!" For the world, in spite
of rumors to the contrary, is always much of a bedlam to the sanity
(so far as he may have any) of every individual man. A strict place,
moreover; its very bedlamisms flowing by law, as do alike the sudden
mud-deluges, and the steady Atlantic tides, and all things whatsoever: a
world inexorable, truly, as gravitation itself;--and it will behoove
you to front it in a similar humor, as the tacit basis for whatever wise
plans you lay. In Friedrich, from the first entrance of him on the stage
of things, we have had to recognize this prime quality, in a fine tacit
form, to a complete degree; and till his last exit, we shall never find
it wanting. Tacit enough, unconscious almost, not given to articulate
itself at all;--and if there be less of piety than we could wish in the
silence of it, there is at least no play-actor mendacity, or cant of
devoutness, to poison the high worth of it. No braver little figure
stands on the Earth at that epoch. Ready, at the due season, with
his mind silently made up;--able to answer diplomatic Robinsons,
Bartensteins and the very Destinies when they apply. If you will
withdraw your snakish notions, will guarantee Silesia, will give him
back his old Treaty of Berlin in an irrefragable shape, he will march
home; if not, he will never march home, but be carried thither dead
rather. That is his intention, if the gods permit.



GRAND-DUKE FRANZ IS ELECTED KAISER (13TH SEPTEMBER, 1745); FRIEDRICH,
THE SEASON AND FORAGE BEING DONE, MAKES FOR SILESIA.

There occurred at Frankfurt--the clear majority, seven of the nine
Electors, Bavaria itself (nay Bohemia this time, "distaff" or not),
and all the others but Friedrich and Kur-Pfalz, being so disposed or
so disposable, Traun being master of the ground--no difficulty about
electing Grand-Duke Franz Stephan of Tuscany? Joint-King of Bohemia, to
be Kaiser of the Holy Romish Reich. Friedrich's envoy protested;--as did
Kur-Pfalz's, with still more vehemence, and then withdrew to Hanau: the
other Seven voted September 13th 1745: and it was done. A new Kaiser,
Franz Stephan, or Franz I.,--with our blessing on him, if that can
avail much. But I fear it cannot. Upon such mendacious Empty-Case
of Kaiserhood, without even money to feed itself, not to speak of
governing, of defending and coercing; upon such entities the blessings
of man avail little; the gods, having warned them to go, do not bless
them for staying!--However, tar-barrels burn, the fountains play (wine
in some of them, I hope); Franz is to be crowned in a fortnight hence,
with extraordinary magnificence. At this last part of it Maria Theresa
will, in her own high person, attend; and proceeds accordingly towards
Frankfurt, in the end of September (say the old Books), so soon as the
Election is over.

Hungarian Majesty's bearing was not popular there, according to
Friedrich,--who always admires her after a sort, and always speaks of
her like a king and gentleman:--but the High Lady, it is intimated, felt
somewhat too well that she was high. Not sorry to have it known, under
the due veils, that her Kaiser-Husband is but of a mimetic nature; that
it is she who has the real power; and that indeed she is in a victorious
posture at present. Very high in her carriage towards the Princes of the
Reich, and their privileges:--poor Kur-Pfalz's notary, or herald, coming
to protest (I think, it was the second time) about something, she quite
disregarded his tabards, pasteboards, or whatever they were, and clapt
him in prison. The thing was commented upon; but Kur-Pfalz got no
redress. Need we repeat,--lazy readers having so often met him, and
forgotten him again,--this is a new younger Kur-Pfalz: Karl Theodor,
this one; not Friedrich Wilhelm's old Friend, but his Successor, of the
Sulzbach line; of whom, after thirty years or so, we may again hear. He
can complain about his violated tabard; will get his notary out of jail
again, but no redress.

Highish even towards her friends, this "Empress-Queen"
(KAISERIN-KONIGIN, such her new title), and has a kind of
"Thank-you-for-Nothing" air towards them. Prussian Majesty, she said,
had unquestionable talents; but, oh, what a character! Too much levity,
she said, by far; heterodox too, in the extreme; a BOSER MANN;--and what
a neighbor has he been! As to Silesia, she was heard to say, she
would as soon part with her petticoat as part with it. [_OEuvres de
Frederic,_ iii. 126, 128.]--So that there is not the least prospect of
peace here? "None," answer Friedrich's emissaries, whom he had empowered
to hint the thing. Which is heavy news to Friedrich.

Early in August, not long after that Audience of Robinson's, her
Majesty, after repeated written messages to Prince Karl, urging him to
go into fight again or attempt something, had sent two high messengers:
Prince Lobkowitz, Duke d'Ahremberg, high dignitaries from Court, have
come to Konigsgratz with the latest urgencies, the newest ideas; and
would fain help Prince Karl to attempt something. Daily they used to
come out upon a little height, in view of Friedrich's tent, and gaze in
upon him, and round all Nature, "with big tubes," he says, "as if
they had been astronomers;" but never attempted anything. We remember
D'Ahremberg, and what part he has played, from the Dettingen times and
onward. "A debauched old fellow," says Friedrich; "gone all to hebetude
by his labors in that line; agrees always with the last speaker." Prince
Karl seems to have little stomach himself; and does not see his way into
(or across) another Battle. Lobkowitz, again, is always saying: "Try
something! We are now stronger than they, by their detachings, by our
reinforcings" (indeed, about twice their number, regular and irregular),
though most of the Saxons are gone home. After much gazing through
their tubes, the Austrians (August 23d) do make a small shift of place,
insignificant otherwise; the Prussians, next day, do the like, in
consequence; quit Chlum, burning their huts; post themselves a little
farther up the Elbe,--their left at a place called Jaromirz, embouchure
of the Aupa into Elbe, [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 129.]--and are
again unattackable.

The worst fact is the multitude of Pandours, more and more infesting our
provision-roads; and that horse-forage itself is, at last, running
low. Detachments lie all duly round to right and left, to secure our
communications with Silesia, especially to left, out of Glatz, where
runs one of the chief roads we have. But the service is becoming daily
more difficult. For example:--

"NEUSTADT, 8th SEPTEMBER. In that left-hand quarter, coming out of
Glatz at a little Bohemian Town called Neustadt, the Prussian Commander,
Tauenzien by name, was repeatedly assaulted; and from September 8th, had
to stand actual siege, gallantly repulsing a full 10,000 with their big
artillery, though his walls were all breached, for about a week, till
Friedrich sent him relief. Prince Lobkowitz, our old anti-Belleisle
friend, who is always of forward fiery humor, had set them on this
enterprise; which has turned out fruitless. The King is much satisfied
with Tauenzien; [Ib. 132.] of whom we shall hear again. Who indeed
becomes notable to us, were it only for getting one Lessing as
secretary, by and by: Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, whose fame has since
gone into all countries; the man having been appointed a 'Secretary'
to the very Destinies, in some sort; that is to say, a Writer of Books
which have turned out to have truth in them! Tauenzien, a grimmish
aquiline kind of man, of no superfluous words, has distinguished himself
for the present by defending Neustadt, which the Austrians fully counted
to get hold of."

Let us give another little scene; preparatory to quitting this Country,
as it is evident the King and we will soon have to do; Country being
quite eaten out, Pandours getting ever rifer, and the Season done:--

JAROMIRZ, "EARLY IN SEPTEMBER," 1745. "Jaromirz is a little Bohemian
Town on the Aupa, or between the Aupa and Metau branches of the Upper
Elbe; four or five miles north of Semonitz, where Friedrich's quarter
now is. Valori, so seldom spoken to, is lodged in a suburb there: 'Had
not you better go into the town itself?' his Majesty did once say; but
Valori, dreading nothing, lodged on,--'Landlord a Burgher whom I thought
respectable.' Respectable, yes he; but his son had been dealing with
Franquini the Pandour, and had sold Valori,--night appointed, measures
all taken; a miracle if Valori escape. Franquini, chief of 30,000
Pandours, has come in person to superintend this important capture; and
lies hidden, with a strong party, in the woods to rearward. Prussians
about 200, scattered in posts, occupy the hedges in front, for guard of
the ovens; to rear, Jaromirz being wholly ours, there is no suspicion.

"In the dead of the night, Franquini emerges from the woods; sends
forward a party of sixty, under the young Judas; who, by methods
suitable, gets them stealthily conducted into Papa's Barn, which looks
across a courtyard into Valori's very windows. From the Barn it is easy,
on paws of velvet, to get into the House, if you have a Judas to open
it. Which you have:--bolts all drawn for you, and even beams ready for
barricading if you be meddled with. 'Upstairs is his Excellency asleep;
Excellency's room is--to right, do you remember; or to left'--'Pshaw, we
shall find it!' The Pandours mount; find a bedroom, break it open,--some
fifteen or sixteen of them, and one who knows a little French;--come
crowding forward: to the horror and terror of the poor inhabitant.' 'QUE
VOULEZ-VOUS DONC?' 'His Excellency Valori!' 'Well, no violence; I am
your prisoner: let me dress!' answers the supposed Excellency,--and
contrives to secrete portfolios, and tear or make away with papers.
And is marched off, under a select guard, who leave the rest to do the
pillage. And was not Valori at all; was Valori's Secretary, one D'Arget,
who had called himself Valori on this dangerous occasion! Valori sat
quaking behind his partition; not till the Pandours began plundering the
stables did the Prussian sentry catch sound of them, and plunge in."

Friedrich had his amusement out of this adventure; liked D'Arget,
the clever Secretary; got D'Arget to himself before long, as will be
seen;--and, in quieter times, dashed off a considerable Explosion of
Rhyme, called LE PALLADION (Valori as Prussia's "Palladium," with
Devils attempting to steal him, and the like), which was once thought an
exquisite Burlesque,--Kings coveting a sight of it, in vain,--but is
now wearisome enough to every reader. [Valori, i. 242; _OEuvres de
Frederic,_ iii. 130: for the Fact. Exquisite Burlesque, PALLADION
itself, is in _OEuvres,_ xi. 192-271 (see IB. 139): a bad copy of
that very bad Original, JEANNE D'ARC,--the only thing now good in it,
Friedrich's polite yet positive refusal to gratify King Louis and his
Pompdour with a sight of it (see IB. PREFACE, x-xiv, Friedrich's Letter
to Louis; date of request and of refusal, March, 1750).]--Let us attend
his Majesty's exit from Bohemia.



Chapter XII.--BATTLE OF SOHR.

The famed beautiful Elbe River rises in romantic chasms, terrible to the
picturesque beholder, at the roots of the Riesengebirge; overlooked
by the Hohe-Kamms, and highest summits of that chain. "Out of eleven
wells," says gentle Dulness, "EILF or ELF QUELLEN, whence its name, Elbe
for ELF." Sure enough, it starts out of various wells; [Description, in
Zollner, _Briefe uber Schlesien,_ ii. 305; in &c. &c.] rushes out, like
a great peacock's or pasha's tail, from the roots of the Giant Mountains
thereabouts; and hurries southward,--or even rather eastward, at first;
for (except the Iser to westward, which does not fall in for a great
while) its chief branches come from the eastern side: Aupa, Metau,
Adler, the drainings of Glatz, and of that rugged Country where
Friedrich has been camping and manoeuvring all summer. On the whole,
its course is southward for the first seventy or eighty miles, washing
Jaromirz, Konigshof, Konigsgratz, down to Pardubitz: at Pardubitz it
turns abruptly westward, and holds on so, bending even northward, by
hill and plain, through the rest of its five or six hundred miles.

Its first considerable branch, on that eastern or left bank, is the
Aupa, which rises in the Pass of Schatzlar (great struggling there, for
convoys, just now); goes next by Trautenau, which has lately been burnt;
and joins the Elbe at Jaromirz, where Valori was stolen, or nearly so,
from under the Prussian left wing. The Aupa runs nearly straight south;
the Elbe, till meeting it, has run rather southeast; but after joining
they go south together, augmented by the Metau, by the Adler, down to
Pardubitz, where the final turn to west occurs. Jaromirz, which lies in
the very angle of Elbe and Aupa, is the left wing of Friedrich's Camp;
main body of the Camp lies on the other side of the Elbe, but of course
has bridges (as at Smirzitz, where that straw sentry did his pranks
lately); bridges are indispensable, part of our provision coming always
by that BOHEMIAN Neustadt, from the northeast quarter out of Silesia;
though the main course of our meal (and much fighting for it) is direct
from the north, by the Pass of Schatzlar,--"Chaslard," as poor Valori
calls it.

Thus Friedrich lay, when Valori escaped being stolen; when Tauenzien
was assailed by the 10,000 Pandours with siege artillery, and stood
inexpugnable in the breach till Friedrich relieved him. Those Pandours
"had cut away his water, for the last two days;" so that, except
for speedy relief, all valor had been in vain. Water being gone, not
recoverable without difficulties, Neustadt was abandoned (September
16th, as I guess);--one of our main Silesian roads for meal has ceased.
We have now only Schatzlar to depend on; where Franquini--lying westward
among the glens of the Upper Elbe, and possessed of abundant talent in
the Tolpatch way (witness Valori's narrow miss lately)--gives us trouble
enough. Friedrich determines to move towards Schatzlar. Homewards, in
fact; eating the Country well as he goes.

Saturday, 18th September, Friedrich crosses the Elbe at Jaromirz.
Entirely unopposed; the Austrians were all busy firing FEU-DE-JOIE
for the Election of their Grand-Duke: Election done five days ago at
Frankfurt, and the news just come. So they crackle about, and deliver
rolling fire, at a great rate; proud to be "IMPERIAL Army" henceforth,
as if that could do much for them. There was also vast dining, for
three days, among the high heads, and a great deal of wine spent. That
probably would have been the chance to undertake something upon them,
better than crossing the Elbe, says Friedrich looking back. But he did
not think of it in time; took second-best in place of best.

He is now, therefore, over into that Triangular piece of Country between
Elbe and Aupa (if readers will consult their Map); in that triangle,
his subsequent notable operations all lie. He here proposes to move
northward, by degrees,--through Trautenau, Schatzlar, and home; well
eating this bit of Country too, the last uneaten bit, as he goes. This
well eaten, there will be no harbor anywhere for Invasion, through the
Winter coming. One of my old Notes says of it, in the topographic point
of view:--

"It is a triangular patch of Country, which has lain asleep since the
Creation of the World; traversed only by Boii (BOI-HEIM-ERS, Bohemians),
Czechs and other such populations, in Human History; but which Friedrich
has been fated to make rather notable to the Moderns henceforth. Let me
recommend it to the picturesque tourist, especially to the military
one. Lovers of rocky precipices, quagmires, brawling torrents and the
unadulterated ruggedness of Nature, will find scope there; and it was
the scene of a distinguished passage of arms, with notable display of
human dexterity and swift presence of mind. For the rest, one of the
wildest, and perhaps (except to the picturesque tourist) most unpleasant
regions in the world. Wild stony upland; topmost Upland, we may say,
of Europe in general, or portion of such Upland; for the rainstorms
hereabouts run several roads,--into the German Ocean and Atlantic by the
Elbe, into the Baltic by the Oder, into the Black Sea by the Donau;--and
it is the waste Outfield whither you rise, by long weeks-journeys, from
many sides.

"Much of it, towards the angle of Elbe and Aupa, is occupied by a huge
waste Wood, called 'Kingdom Forest' (KONIGREICH SYLVA or WALD, peculium
of Old Czech Majesties, I fancy); may be sixty square miles in area, the
longer side of which lies along the Elbe. A Country of rocky defiles;
lowish hills chaotically shoved together, not wanting their brooks and
quagmires, straight labyrinthic passages; shaggy with wild wood. Some
poor Hamlets here and there, probably the sleepiest in Nature, are
scattered about; there may be patches ploughable for rye [modern Tourist
says snappishly, There are many such; whole region now drained; reminded
me of Yorkshire Highlands, with the Western Sun gilding it, that fine
afternoon!]--ploughable for rye, buckwheat; boggy grass to be gathered
in summer; charcoaling to do; pigs at least are presumable, among
these straggling outposts of humanity in their obscure Hamlets: poor
ploughing, moiling creatures, they little thought of becoming notable so
soon! None of the Books (all intent on mere soldiering) take the least
notice of them; not at the pains to spell their Hamlets right: no
more notice than if they also had been stocks and moss-grown stones.
Nevertheless, there they did evidently live, for thousands of years
past, in a dim manner;--and are much terrified to have become the seat
of war, all on a sudden. Their poor Hamlets, Sohr, Staudentz, Prausnitz,
Burgersdorf and others still send up a faint smoke; and have in them,
languidly, the live-coal of mysterious human existence, in those
woods,--to judge by the last maps that have come out. A thing worth
considering by the passing tourist, military or other."

It is in this Kingdom Forest (which he calls ROYAUME DE SILVA, instead
of SYLVA DE ROYAUME) that Friedrich now marches; keeping the body of the
Forest well on his left, and skirting the southern and eastern sides
of it. Rough marching for his Majesty; painfully infested by Nadastian
Tolpatches; who run out on him from ambushes, and need to be scourged;
one ambush in particular, at a place called Liebenthal (second day's
march, and near the end of it),--where our Prussian Hussars, winding
like fiery dragons on the dangerous precipices, gave them better than
they brought, and completely quenched their appetite for that day. After
Liebenthal, the march soon ends; three miles farther on, at the dim
wold-hamlet of Staudentz: here a camp is pitched; here, till the Country
is well eaten out, or till something else occur, we propose to tarry for
a time.

Horse-forage abounds here; but there is no getting of it without
disturbance from those dogs; you must fight for every truss of grass:
if a meal-train is coming, as there does every five days, you have
to detach 8,000 foot and 3,000 horse to help it safe in. A fretting
fatiguing time for regular troops. Our bakery is at Trautenau,--where
Valori is now lodging. The Tolpatchery, unable to take Trautenau, set
fire to it, though it is their own town, their own Queen's town; thatchy
Trautenau, wooden too in the upper stories of it, takes greedily to
the fire; goes all aloft in flame, and then lies black. A scandalous
transaction, thinks Friedrich. The Prussian corn lay nearly all in
cellars; little got, even of the Prussians, by such an atrocity: and
your own poor fellow-subjects, where are they? Valori was burnt out
here; again exploded from his quarters, poor man;--seems to have thought
it a mere fire in his own lodging, and that he was an unfortunate
diplomatist. Happily he got notice (PRIVATISSIME, for no officer dare
whisper in such cases) that there is an armed party setting out for
Silesia, to guard meal that is coming: Valori yokes himself to this
armed party, and gets safe over the Hills with it,--then swift, by extra
post, to Breslau and to civilized (partially civilized) accommodation,
for a little rest after these hustlings and tossings.

Friedrich had lain at Staudentz, in this manner, bickering continually
for his forage, and eating the Country, for about ten days: and now,
as the latter process is well on, and the season drawing to a close:
he determines on a shift northward. Thursday, 30th September next, let
there be one other grand forage, the final one in this eaten tract, then
northward to fresh grounds. That, it appears, was the design. But,
on Wednesday, there came in an Austrian deserter; who informs us that
Prince Karl is not now in Konigsgratz, but in motion up the Elbe;
already some fifty miles up; past Jaromirz: his rear at Konigshof, his
van at Arnau,--on a level with burnt Trautenau, and farther north than
we ourselves are. This is important news. "Intending to block us out
from Schatzlar? Hmh!" Single scouts, or small parties, cannot live in
this Kingdom Wood, swarming with Pandours: Friedrich sends out a Colonel
Katzler, with 500 light horse, to investigate a little. Katzler
pushes forward, on such lane or forest road-track as there is, towards
Konigshof; beats back small hussar parties;--comes, in about an hour's
space, not upon hussars merely, but upon dense masses of heavy horse
winding through the forest lanes; and, with that imperfect intelligence,
is obliged to return. The deserter spake truth, apparently; and that
is all we can know. Forage scheme is given up; the order is, "Baggage
packed, and MARCH to-morrow morning at ten." Long before ten, there
had great things befallen on the morrow!--Try to understand this Note a
little:--

"The Camp of Staudentz-which two persons (the King, and General Stille,
a more careful reporter, who also was an eye-witness) have done their
best to describe--will, after all efforts, and an Ordnance Map to help,
remain considerably unintelligible to the reader; as is too usual
in such cases. A block of high-lying ground; Friedrich's Camp on it,
perhaps two miles long, looks to the south; small Village of Staudentz
in front; hollow beyond that, and second small Village, Deutsch
Prausnitz, hanging on the opposite slope, with shaggy heights beyond,
and the Kingdom Forest there beginning: on the left, defiles, brooks
and strait country, leading towards the small town of Eypel: that is our
left and front aspect, a hollow well isolating us on those sides. Hollow
continues all along the front; hollow definite on our side of it, and
forming a tolerable defence:--though again, I perceive, to rightward at
no great distance, there rise High Grounds which considerably overhang
us." A thing to be marked! "These we could not occupy, for want of men;
but only maintain vedettes upon them. Over these Heights, a mile or
two westward of this hollow of ours, runs the big winding hollow called
Georgengrund (GEORGE'S BOTTOM), which winds up and down in that Kingdom
Forest, and offers a road from Konigshof to Trautenau, among other
courses it takes.

"From the crown of those Heights on our right flank here, looking to
the west, you might discern (perhaps three miles off, from one of
the sheltering nooks in the hither side of that Georgengrund), rising
faintly visible over knolls and dingles, the smoke of a little Forest
Village. That Village is Sohr; notable ever since, beyond others, in
the Kingdom Wood. Sohr, like the other Villages, has its lane-roads; its
road to Trautenau, to Konigshof, no doubt; but much nearer you, on our
eastern slope of the Heights, and far hitherward of Sohr, which is on
the western, goes the great road [what is now the great road], from
Konigshof to Trautenau, well visible from Friedrich's Camp, though still
at some distance from it. Could these Heights between us and Sohr, which
lie beyond the great road, be occupied, we were well secured; isolated
on the right too, as on the other sides, from Kingdom Forest and its
ambushes. 'Should have been done,' admits Friedrich; 'but then, as
it is, there are not troops enough:' with 18,000 men you cannot do
everything!"

Here, however, is the important point. In Sohr, this night, 29th
September, in a most private manner, the Austrians, 30,000 of them and
more, have come gliding through the woods, without even their pipe lit,
and with thick veil of hussars ahead! Outposts of theirs lie squatted in
the bushes behind Deutsch Prausnitz, hardly 500 yards from Friedrich's
Camp. And eastward, leftward of him, in the defiles about Eypel, lie
Nadasti and Ruffian Trenck, with ten or twelve thousand, who are to take
him in rear. His "Camp of Staudentz" will be at a fine pass to-morrow
morning. The Austrian Gentlemen had found, last week, a certain bare
Height in the Forest (Height still known), from which they could use
their astronomer tubes day after day; [Orlich, ii. 225.] and now they
are about attempting something!

Thursday morning, very early, 30th September, 1745, Friedrich was in his
tent, busy with generals and march-routes,--when a rapid orderly comes
in, from that Vedette, or strong Piquet, on the Heights to our right:
"Austrians visibly moving, in quantity, near by!" and before he has done
answering, the officer himself arrives: "Regular Cavalry in great force;
long dust-cloud in Kingdom Forest, in the gray dawn; and, so far as we
can judge, it is their Army coming on." Here is news for a poor man, in
the raw of a September morning, by way of breakfast to him! "To arms!"
is, of course, Friedrich's instant order; and he himself gallops to the
Piquet on the Heights, glass in hand. "Austrian Army sure enough,
thirty to thirty-five thousand of them, we only eighteen. [_OEuvres
de Frederic,_ iii. 139.] Coming to take us on the right flank here;
to attack our Camp by surprise: will crush us northward through the
defiles, and trample us down in detail? Hmh! To run for it, will never
do. We must fight for it, and even attack THEM, as our way is, though on
such terms. Quick, a plan!" The head of Friedrich is a bank you cannot
easily break by coming on it for plans: such a creature for impromptu
plans, and unexpected dashes swift as the panther's, I have hardly
known,--especially when you squeeze him into a corner, and fancy he is
over with it! Friedrich gallops down, with his plan clear enough; and
already the Austrians, horse and foot, are deploying upon those Heights
he has quitted; Fifty Squadrons of Horse for left wing to them, and
a battery of Twenty-eight big Guns is establishing itself where
Friedrich's Piquet lately stood.

Friedrich's right flank has to become his front, and face those
formidable Austrian Heights and Batteries; and this with more than
Prussian velocity, and under the play of those twenty-eight big guns,
throwing case-shot (GRENADES ROYALES) and so forth, all the while.
To Valori, when he heard of the thing, it is inconceivable how mortal
troops could accomplish such a movement; Friedrich himself praises
it, as a thing honorably well done. Took about half an hour; case-shot
raining all the while; soldier honorably never-minding: no flurry,
though a speed like that of spinning-tops. And here we at length are,
Staudentz now to rear of us, behind our centre a good space; Burgersdorf
in front of us to right, our left reaching to Prausnitz: Austrian lines,
three deep of them, on the opposite Height; we one line only, which
matches them in length.

They, that left wing of horse, should have thundered down on us,
attacking us, not waiting our attack, thinks Friedrich; but they
have not done it. They stand on their height there, will perhaps fire
carbines, as their wont is. "You, Buddenbrock, go into them with your
Cuirassiers!" Buddenbrock and the Cuirassiers, though it is uphill,
go into them at a furious rate; meet no countercharge, mere sputter of
carbines;--tumble them to mad wreck, back upon their second line, back
upon their third: absurdly crowded there on their narrow height, no room
to manoeuvre; so that they plunge, fifty squadrons of them, wholly into
the Georgengrund rearward, into the Kingdom Wood, and never come on
again at all. Buddenbrock has done his job right well.

Seeing which, our Infantry of the right wing, which stood next to
Buddenbrock, made impetuous charge uphill, emulous to capture that
Battery of Twenty-eight; but found it, for some time, a terrible
attempt. These Heights are not to be called "hills," still less
"mountains" (as in some careless Books); but it is a stiff climb at
double-quick, with twenty-eight big guns playing in the face of you.
Storms of case-shot shear away this Infantry, are quenching its noble
fury in despair; Infantry visibly recoiling, when our sole Three
Regiments of Reserve hurry up to support. Round these all rallies;
rushes desperately on, and takes the Battery,--of course, sending the
Austrian left wing rapidly adrift, on loss of the same.

This, I consider, is the crisis of the Fight; the back of the Austrian
enterprise is already broken, by this sad winging of it on the left. But
it resists still; comes down again,--the reserve of their left wing
seen rapidly making for Burgersdorf, intending an attack there; which we
oppose with vigor, setting Burgersdorf on fire for temporary screen; and
drive the Austrian reserve rapidly to rearward again. But there is rally
after rally of them. They rank again on every new height, and dispute
there; loath to be driven into Kingdom Wood, after such a flourish of
arms. One height, "bushy steep height," the light-limbed valiant Prince,
little Ferdinand of Brunswick, had the charge of attacking; and he did
it with his usual impetus and irresistibility:--and, strangely enough,
the defender of it chanced to be that Brother of his, Prince Ludwig,
with whom he had the little Interview lately. Prince Ludwig got a wound,
as well as lost his height. The third Brother, poor Prince Albrecht,
who is also here, as volunteer apprentice, on the Prussian side, gets
killed. There will never be another Interview, for all three, between
the Camps! Strange times for those poor Princes, who have to seek
soldiering for their existence.

Meanwhile the Cavalry of Buddenbrock, that is to say of the right wing,
having now no work in that quarter, is despatched to reinforce the left
wing, which has stood hitherto apart on its own ground; not attacked or
attacking,--a left wing REFUSED, as the soldiers style it. Reinforced by
Buddenbrock, this left wing of horse does now also storm forward;--"near
the Village of Prausnitz" (Prausnitz a little way to rear of it),
thereabouts, is the scene of its feat. Feat done in such fashion that
the Austrians opposite will not stand the charge at all; but gurgle
about in a chaotic manner; then gallop fairly into Kingdom Wood, without
stroke struck; and disappear, as their fellows had done. Whereupon
the Prussian horse breaks in upon the adjoining Infantry of that flank
(Austrian right flank, left bare in this manner); champs it also into
chaotic whirlpools; cuts away an outskirt of near 2,000 prisoners,
and sets the rest running. This seems to have been pretty much the
COUP-DE-GRACE of the Fight; and to have brought the Austrian dispute to
finis. From the first, they had rallied on the heights; had struggled
and disputed. Two general rallies they made, and various partial, but
none had any success. They were driven on, bayonet in back, as the
phrase is: with this sad slap on their right, added to that old one on
their left, what can they now do but ebb rapidly; pour in cataracts
into Kingdom Wood, and disappear there? [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii.
135-143; Stille, pp. 144-163; Orlich, ii. 227-243; _Feldzuge,_ i. 357,
363, 374.]

Prince Karl's scheme was good, says Friedrich; but it was ill executed.
He never should have let us form; his first grand fault was that he
waited to be attacked, instead of attacking. Parts of his scheme were
never executed at all. Duke d'Ahremberg, for instance, it is said, had
so dim a notion of the ground, that he drew up some miles off, with
his back to the Prussians. Such is the rumor,--perhaps only a rumor,
in mockery of the hebetated old gentleman fallen unlucky? On the
other hand, that Nadasti made a failure which proved important, is
indubitable. Nadasti, with some thousands of Tolpatchery, was at
Liebenthal, four miles to southeast of the action; Ruffian Trenck lay
behind Eypel, perhaps as far to east, of it: Trenck and Nadasti were to
rendezvous, to unite, and attack the Prussian Camp on its rear,--"Camp,"
so ran the order, for it was understood the Prussians would all be
there, we others attacking it in front and both flanks;--which turned
out otherwise, not for Nadasti alone!

Nadasti came to his rendezvous in time; Ruffian Trenck did not:
Nadasti grew tired of waiting for Trenck, and attacked the Camp by
himself:--Camp, but not any men; Camp being now empty, and the men all
fighting, ranked at right angles to it, furlongs and miles away. Nadasti
made a rare hand of the Camp; plundered everything, took all the King's
Camp-furniture, ready money, favorite dog Biche,--likewise poor
Eichel his Secretary, who, however, tore the papers first. Tolpatchery
exultingly gutted the Camp; and at last set fire to it,--burnt even some
eight or ten poor Prussian sick, and also "some women whom they caught.
We found the limbs of these poor men and women lying about," reports
old General Lehwald; who knew about it. A doggery well worthy of the
gallows, think Lehwald and I. "Could n't help it; ferocity of wild men,"
says Nadasti. "Well; but why not attack, then, with your ferocity?"
Confused Court-martial put these questions, at Vienna subsequently; and
Ruffian Trenck, some say, got injustice, Nadasti shuffling things upon
him; for which one cares almost nothing. Lehwald, lying at Trautenau,
had heard the firing at sunrise; and instantly marched to help: he only
arrived to give Nadasti a slash or two, and was too late for the Fight.
One Schlichtling, on guard with a weak party, saved what was in the
right wing of the Camp,--small thanks to him, the Main Fight being so
near: Friedrich's opinion is, an Officer, in Schlichtling's place, ought
to have done more, and not have been so helpless.

This was the Battle of Sohr; so called because the Austrians had begun
there, and the Prussians ended there. The Prussian pursuit drew bridle
at that Village; unsafe to prosecute Austrians farther, now in the deeps
of Kingdom Forest. The Battle has lasted five hours. It must be now
getting towards noon; and time for breakfast, if indeed any were to be
had; but that is next to impossible, Nadasti having been so busy. Not
without extreme difficulty is a manchet of bread, with or without a drop
of wine, procured for the King's Majesty this day. Many a tired hero
will have nothing but tobacco, with spring-water, to fall back upon.
Never mind! says the King, says everybody. After all, it is a cheap
price to pay for missing an attack from Pandours in the rear, while such
crisis went on ahead.

Lying COUSIN Trenck, of the Life-guard, who is now in Glatz, gives vivid
eye-witness particulars of these things, time of the morning and so on;
says expressly he was there, and what he did there, [Frederic Baron de
Trenck, _Memoires, traduits par lui-meme_ (Strasburg and Paris, 1789),
i. 74-78, 79.]--though in Glatz under lock and key, three good months
before. "How could I help mistakes," said he afterwards, when people
objected to this and that in his blusterous mendacity of a Book: "I had
nothing but my poor agitated memory to trust to!" A man's memory, when
it gets the length of remembering that he was in the Battle of Sohr
while bodily absent, ought it not to--in fact, to strike work; to still
its agitations altogether, and call halt? Trenck, some months after,
got clambered out of Glatz, by sewers, or I forget how; and leaped, or
dropped, from some parapet into the River Neisse,--sinking to the loins
in tough mud, so that he could not stir.

MAP TO GO HERE----BOOK 15--page 499----

"Fouquet let me stand there half a day, before he would pick me
out again." Rigorous Bouquet, human mercy forbidding, could not let
him stand there in permanence,--as we, better circumstanced, may with
advantage try to do, in time coming!

Friedrich lay at Sohr five days; partly for the honor of the thing,
partly to eat out the Country to perfection. Prince Karl, from
Konigshof, soon fell back to Konigsgratz; and lay motionless there,
nothing but his Tolpatcheries astir, Sohr Country all eaten, Friedrich,
in the due Divisions, marched northward. Through Trautenau, Schatzlar,
his own Division, which was the main one;--and, fencing off the
Tolpatches successfully with trouble, brings all his men into Silesia
again. A good job of work behind them, surely! Cantons them to right and
left of Landshut, about Rohnstock and Hohenfriedberg, hamlets known so
well; and leaving the Young Dessauer to command, drives for Berlin (30th
October),--rapidly, as his wont is. Prince Karl has split up his force
at Konigsgratz; means, one cannot doubt, to go into winter-quarters.
If he think of invading, across that eaten Country and those bad
Mountains,--well, our troops can all be got together in six hours' time.

At Trautenau, a week after Sohr, Friedrich had at last received the
English ratification of that Convention of Hanover, signed 26th August,
almost a month ago; not ratified till September 22d. About which there
had latterly been some anxiety, lest his Britannic Majesty himself might
have broken off from it. With Austria, with Saxony, Britannic Majesty
has been entirely unsuccessful:--"May not Sohr, perhaps, be a fresh
persuasive?" hopes Friedrich;--but as to Britannic Majesty's breaking
off, his thoughts are far from that, if we knew! Poor Majesty: not long
since, Supreme Jove of Germany; and now--is like to be swallowed
in ragamuffin street-riots; not a thunder-bolt within clutch of him
(thunder-bolts all sticking in the mud of the Netherlands, far off), and
not a constable's staff of the least efficacy! Consider these dates in
combination. Battle of Sohr was on THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 30th:--

"SUNDAY preceding, SEPTEMBER 26th, was such a Lord's-Day in the City of
Edinburgh, as had not been seen there,--not since Jenny Geddes's stool
went flying at the Bishop's head, above a hundred years before. Big
alarm-bell bursting out in the middle of divine service; emptying all
the Churches ('Highland rebels just at hand!')--into General Meeting of
the Inhabitants, into Chaos come again, for the next forty hours.
Till, in the gaunt midnight, Tuesday, 2 A.M., Lochiel with about 1,000
Camerons, waiting slight opportunity, crushed in through the Netherbow
Port; and"--And, about noon of that day, a poor friend of ours,
loitering expectant in the road that leads by St. Anthony's Well, saw
making entry into paternal Holyrood,--the Young Pretender, in person,
who is just being proclaimed Prince of Wales, up in the High-street
yonder! "A tall slender young man, about five feet ten inches high; of
a ruddy complexion, high-nosed, large rolling brown eyes; long-visaged,
red-haired, but at that time wore a pale periwig. He was in a Highland
habit [coat]; over the shoulder a blue sash wrought with gold; red
velvet breeches; a green velvet bonnet, with white cockade on it and
a gold lace. His speech seemed very like that of an Irishman; very sly
[how did you know, my poor friend?];--spoke often to O'Sullivan [thought
to be a person of some counsel; had been Tutor to Maillebois's Boys, had
even tried some irregular fighting under Maillebois]--to O'Sullivan and"
[Henderson, _Highland Rebellion,_ p. 14.]... And on Saturday, in short,
came PRESTONPANS. Enough of such a Supreme Jove; good for us here as a
timetable chiefly, or marker of dates!

Sunday, 3d October, King's Adjutant, Captain Mollendorf, a young Officer
deservedly in favor, arrives at Berlin with the joyful tidings of
this Sohr business ("Prausnitz" we then called it): to the joy of all
Prussians, especially of a Queen Mother, for whom there is a Letter in
pencil. After brief congratulation, Mollendorf rushes on; having next to
give the Old Dessauer notice of it in his Camp at Dieskau, in the Halle
neighborhood. Mollendorf appears in Halle suddenly next morning, Monday,
about ten o'clock, sixteen postilions trumpeting, and at their swiftest
trot, in front of him;--shooting, like a melodious morning-star, across
the rusty old city, in this manner,--to Dieskau Camp, where he gives the
Old Dessauer his good news. Excellent Victory indeed; sharp striking,
swift self-help on our part. Halle and the Camp have enough to think
of, for this day and the next. Whither Mollendorf went next, we will not
ask: perhaps to Brunswick and other consanguineous places?--Certain it
is,

"On Wednesday, the 6th, about two in the afternoon, the Old Dessauer
has his whole Army drawn out there, with green sprigs in their hats,
at Dieskau, close upon the Saxon Frontier; and, after swashing and
manoeuvring about in the highest military style of art, ranks them
all in line, or two suitable lines, 30,000 of them; and then,
with clangorous outburst of trumpet, kettle-drum and all manner of
field-music, fires off his united artillery a first time; almost shaking
the very hills by such a thunderous peal, in the still afternoon. And
mark, close fitted into the artillery peal, commences a rolling fire,
like a peal spread out in threads, sparkling strangely to eye and ear;
from right to left, long spears of fire and sharp strokes of sound,
darting aloft, successive simultaneous, winding for the space of miles,
then back by the rear line, and home to the starting-point: very
grand indeed. Again, and also again, the artillery peal, and rolling
small-arms fitted into it, is repeated; a second and a third time,
kettle-drums and trumpets doing what they can. That was the Old
Dessauer's bonfiring (what is called FEU-DE-JOIE), for the Victory of
Sohr; audible almost at Leipzig, if the wind were westerly. Overpowering
to the human mind; at least, to the old Newspaper reporter of that day.
But what was strangest in the business," continues he "(DAS CURIEUSESTE
DABEY), was that the Saxon Uhlans, lying about in the villages across
the Border, were out in the fields, watching the sight, hardly 300 yards
off, from beginning to end; and little dreamed that his High Princely
Serenity," blue of face and dreadful in war, "was quite close to them,
on the Height called Bornhock; condescending to 'take all this into
High-Serene Eye-shine there; and, by having a white flag waved,
deigning to give signal for the discharges of the artillery.'"
[_Helden-Geschichte,_ i. 1124.]

By this the reader may know that the Old Dessauer is alive, ready for
action if called on; and Bruhl ought to comprehend better how riskish
his game with edge-tools is. Bruhl is not now in an unprepared
state:--here are Uhlans at one's elbow looking on. Rutowski's Uhlans;
who lies encamped, not far off, in good force, posted among morasses;
strongly entrenched, and with schemes in his head, and in Bruhl's, of
an aggressive, thrice-secret and very surprising nature! I remark only
that, in Heidelberg Country, victorious old Traun is putting his people
into winter-quarters; himself about to vanish from this History, [Went
to SIEBENBURGEN (Transylvania) as Governor; died there February,
1748, age seventy-one (_Maria Theresiens Leben,_ p. 56 n.).]--and has
detached General Grune with 10,000 men; who left Heidelberg October 9th,
on a mysterious errand, heeded by nobody; and will turn up in the next
Chapter.



Chapter XIII.--SAXONY AND AUSTRIA MAKE A SURPRISING LAST ATTEMPT.

After this strenuous and victorious Campaign, which has astonished all
public men, especially all Pragmatic Gazetteers, and with which all
Europe is disharmoniously ringing, Friedrich is hopeful there will be
Peace, through England;--cannot doubt, at least, but the Austrians have
had enough for one year;--and looks forward to certain months, if not
of rest, yet of another kind of activity. Negotiation, Peace through
England, if possible; that is the high prize: and in the other case,
or in any case, readiness for next Campaign;--which with the treasury
exhausted, and no honorable subsidy from France, is a difficult problem.

That was Friedrich's, and everybody's, program of affairs for the months
coming: but in that Friedrich and everybody found themselves greatly
mistaken. Bruhl and the Austrians had decided otherwise. "Open
mouse-trap," at Striegau; claws of the sleeping cat, at Sohr: these were
sad experiences; ill to bear, with the Sea-Powers grumbling on you, and
the world sniffing its pity on you;--but are not conclusive, are only
provoking and even maddening, to the sanguine mind. Two sad failures;
but let us try another time. "A tricky man; cunning enough, your King of
Prussia!" thinks Bruhl, with a fellness of humor against Friedrich which
is little conceivable to us now: "Cunning enough. But it is possible
cunning may be surpassed by deeper cunning!"--and decides, Bartenstein
and an indignant Empress-Queen assenting eagerly, That there shall, in
the profoundest secrecy till it break out, be a third, and much fiercer
trial, this Winter yet. The Bruhl-Bartenstein plan (owing mainly to the
Russian Bugbear which hung over it, protective, but with whims of its
own) underwent changes, successive redactions or editions; which the
reader would grudge to hear explained to him. [Account of them in
Orlich, ii. 273-278 (from various RUTOWSKI Papers; and from the
contemporary satirical Pamphlet, "MONDSCHEINWURFE, Mirror-castings of
Moonshine, by ZEBEDAUS Cuckoo,) beaten Captain of a beaten Army."] Of the
final or acted edition, some loose notion, sufficient for our purpose,
may be collected from the following fractions of Notes:--

NOVEMBER 17th (INTERIOR OF GERMANY).... "Feldmarschall-Lieutenant von
Grune, a General of mark, detached by Traun not long since, from the
Rhine Country, with a force of 10,000 men, why is he marching about:
first to Baireuth Country, 'at Hof, November 9th,' as if for Bohemia;
then north, to Gera ('lies at Gera till the 17th'), as if for
Saxony Proper? Prince Karl, you would certainly say, has gone into
winter-quarters; about Konigsgratz, and farther on? Gone or going,
sure enough, is Prince Karl, into the convenient Bohemian
districts,--uncertain which particular districts; at least the Young
Dessauer, watching him from the Silesian side, is uncertain which.
Better be vigilant, Prince Leopold!--Grune, lying at Gera yonder, is not
intending for Prince Karl, then? No, not thither. Then perhaps
towards Saxony, to reinforce the Saxons? Or some-whither to find fat
winter-quarters: who knows? Indeed, who cares particularly, for such
inconsiderable Grune and his 10,000!--

"The Saxons quitted their inexpugnable Camp towards Halle, some time
ago; went into cantonments farther inland;--the Old Dessauer (middle
of October) having done the like, and gone home: his force lies rather
scattered, for convenience of food and forage. From the Silesian
side, again, Prince Leopold, whose head-quarters are about Striegau,
intimates, That he cannot yet say, with certainty, what districts Prince
Karl will occupy for winter-quarters in Bohemia. Prince Karl is vaguely
roving about; detaching Pandours to the Silesian Mountains, as if for
checking our victorious Nassau there;--always rather creeping northward;
skirting Western Silesia with his main force; 30,000 or better, with
Lobkowitz and Nadasti ahead. Meaning what? Be vigilant, my young friend.

"The private fact is, Prince Karl does not mean to go into
winter-quarters at all. In private fact, Prince Karl is one of Three
mysterious Elements or Currents, sent on a far errand: Grune is another:
Rutowski's Saxon Camp (now become Cantonment) is a third. Three Currents
instinct with fire and destruction, but as yet quite opaque; which have
been launched,--whitherward thinks the reader? On Berlin itself, and
the Mark of Brandenburg; there to collide, and ignite in a marvellous
manner. There is their meeting-point: there shall they, on a sudden,
smite one another into flame; and the destruction blaze, fiery enough,
round Friedrich and his own Brandenburg homesteads there!--

"It is a grand scheme; scheme at least on a grand scale. For the LEGS of
it, Grune's march and Prince Karl's, are about 600 miles long! Plan due
chiefly, they say, to the yellow rage of Bruhl; aided by the contrivance
of Rutowski, and the counsel of Austrian military men. For there is much
consulting about it, and redacting of it; Polish Majesty himself
very busy. To Bruhl's yellow rage it is highly solacing and hopeful.
'Rutowski, lying close in his Cantonments, and then suddenly springing
out, will overwhelm the Old Dessauer, who lies wide;--can do it, surely;
and Grune is there to help if necessary. Dessauer blown to pieces,
Grune, with Rutowski combined, push in upon Brandenburg,--Grune himself
upon Berlin,--from the west and south, nobody expecting him. Prince
Karl, not taking into winter-quarters in Bohemia, as they idly think;
but falling down the Valley of the Bober, or Bober and Queiss, into the
Lausitz (to Gorlitz, Guben, where we have Magazines for him), comes upon
it from the southeast,--nobody expecting any of them. Three simultaneous
Armies hurled on the head of your Friedrich; combustible deluges flowing
towards him, as from the ends of Germany; so opaque, silent, yet of fire
wholly: will not that surprise him!' thinks Bruhl. These are the schemes
of the little man."

Bruhl, having constituted himself rival to Friedrich, and fallen into
pale or yellow rage by the course things took, this Plan is naturally
his chief joy, or crown of joys; a bubbling well of solace to him in
his parched condition. He should, obviously, have kept it secret;
thrice-secret, the little fool;--but a poor parched man is not always
master of his private bubbling wells in that kind! Wolfstierna is
Swedish Envoy at Dresden; Rudenskjold, Swedish Envoy at Berlin, has
run over to see him in the dim November days. Swedes, since Ulrique's
marriage, are friendly to Prussia. Bruhl has these two men to dinner;
talks with them, over his wine, about Friedrich's insulting usage
of him, among other topics. "Insulting; how, your Excellency?" asks
Rudenskjold, privately a friend of Friedrich. Bruhl explains, with voice
quivering, those cuts in the Friedrich manifesto of August last, and
other griefs suffered; the two Swedes soothing him with what oil they
have ready. "No matter!" hints Bruhl; and proceeds from hint to hint,
till the two Swedes are fully aware of the grand scheme: Grune, Prince
Karl; and how Destruction, with legs 500 miles long, is steadily
advancing to assuage one with just revenge. "Right, your
Excellency!"--only that Rudenskjold proceeds to Berlin; and there
straightway ("8th November") punctually makes Friedrich also aware.
[Stenzel, iv. 262; Ranke, iii. 317-323; Friedrich's own narrative of
it, _OEuvres,_ iii. 148.] Foolish Bruhl: a man that has a secret should
not only hide it, but hide that he has it to hide.



FRIEDRICH GOES OUT TO MEET HIS THREE-LEGGED MONSTER; CUTS ONE LEG OF IT
IN TWO (Fight of Hennersdorf, 23d November, 1745).

Friedrich, having heard the secret, gazes into it with horror and
astonishment: "What a time I have! This is not living; this is being
killed a thousand times a day!" [Ranke (iii. 321 n.): TO whom said, we
are not told.]--with horror and astonishment; but also with what most
luminous flash of eyesight is in him; compares it with Prince Karl's
enigmatic motions, Grune's open ones and the other phenomena;--perceives
that it is an indisputable fact, and a thrice-formidable; requiring to
be instantly dealt with by the party interested! Whereupon, after hearty
thanks to Rudenskjold, there occur these rapidly successive phases of
activity, which we study to take up in a curt form.

FIRST (probably 9th or 10th November), there is Council held with
Minister Podewils and the Old Dessauer; Council from which comes little
benefit, or none. Podewils and Old Leopold stare incredulous; cannot
be made to believe such a thing. "Impossible any Saxon minister or man
would voluntarily bring the theatre of war into his own Country, in
this manner!" thinks the Old Dessauer, and persists to think,--on what
obstinate ground Friedrich never knew. To which Podewils, "who
has properties in the Lausitz, and would so fain think them safe,"
obstinately, though more covertly, adheres. "Impossible!" urge both
these Councillors; and Friedrich cannot even make them believe it.
Believe it; and, alas, believing it is not the whole problem!

Happily Friedrich has the privilege of ordering, with or without their
belief. "You, Podewils, announce the matter to foreign Courts. You,
Serene Highness of Anhalt, at your swiftest, collect yonder, and encamp
again. Your eye well on Grune and Rutowski; and the instant I give you
signal--! I am for Silesia, to look after Prince Karl, the other long
leg of this Business." Old Leopold, according to Friedrich's account, is
visibly glad of such opportunity to fight again before he die: and yet,
for no reason except some senile jealousy, is not content with these
arrangements; perversely objects to this and that. At length the
King says,--think of this hard word, and of the eyes that accompany
it!--"When your Highness gets Armies of your own, you will order them
according to your mind; at present, it must be according to mine." On,
then; and not a moment lost: for of all things we must be swift!

Old Leopold goes accordingly. Friedrich himself goes in a week hence.
Orders, correspondences from Podewils and the rest, are flying right and
left;--to Young Leopold in Silesia, first of all. Young Leopold draws
out his forces towards the Silesian-Lausitz border, where Prince Karl's
intentions are now becoming visible. And,--here is the second phase
notable,--

"On Monday, 15th, ["18th," _Feldzuge,_ i. 402 (see Rodenbeck, i. 122).]
at 7 A.M.," Friedrich rushes off, by Crossen, full speed for Liegnitz;
"with Rothenburg, with the Prince of Prussia and Ferdinand of Brunswick
accompanying." With what thoughts,--though, in his face, you can read
nothing; all Berlin being already in such tremor! Friedrich is in
Liegnitz next day; and after needful preliminaries there, does, on the
Thursday following, "at Nieder-Adelsdorf," not far off, take actual
command of Prince Leopold's Army, which had lain encamped for some days,
waiting him. And now with such force in hand,--35,000, soldiers every
man of them, and freshened by a month's rest,--one will endeavor to do
some good upon Prince Karl. Probably sooner than Prince Karl supposes.
For there is great velocity in this young King; a panther-like
suddenness of spring in him: cunning, too, as any Felis of them; and
with claws like the Felis Leo on occasion. Here follows the brief
Campaign that ensued, which I strive greatly to abridge.

Prince Karl's intentions towards Frankfurt-on-Oder Country, through the
Lausitz, are now becoming practically manifest. There is a Magazine for
him at Guben, within thirty miles of Frankfurt; arrangements getting
ready all the way. A winter march of 150 miles;--but what, say the
spies, is to hinder? Prince Karl dreams not that Friedrich is on the
ground, or that anybody is aware. Which notion Friedrich finds that it
will be extremely suitable to maintain in Prince Karl. Friedrich is now
at Adelsdorf, some thirty miles eastward of the Lausitz Border, perhaps
forty or more from the route Prince Karl will follow through that
Province.

"It is a high-lying irregularly hilly Country; hilly, not mountainous.
Various streams rise out of it that have a long course,--among others,
the Spree, which washes Berlin;--especially three Valleys cross it,
three Rivers with their Valleys: Bober, Queiss, Neisse (the THIRD Neisse
we have come upon); all running northward, pretty much parallel, though
all are branches of the Oder. This is Neisse THIRD, we say; not the
Neisse of Neisse City, which we used to know at the north base of
the Giant Mountains, nor the Roaring Neisse, which we have seen at
Hohenfriedberg; but a third [and the FOURTH and last, "Black Neisse,"
thank Heaven, is an upper branch of this, and we have, and shall have,
nothing to do with it!]--third Neisse, which we may call the Lausitz
Neisse. On which, near the head of it, there is a fine old spinning,
linen-weaving Town called Zittau,--where, to make it memorable, one
Tourist has read, on the Town-house, an Inscription worth repeating:
'BENE FACERE ET MALE AUDIRE REGIUM EST, To do good and have evil said
of you, is a kingly thing.' Other Towns, as Gorlitz, and seventy miles
farther the above-said Guben, lie on this same Neisse,--shall we
add that Herrnhuth stands near the head of it? The wondrous Town of
Herrnhuth (LORD'S-KEEPING), founded by Count Zinzendorf, twenty
years before those dates; ["In 1722, the first tree felled" (LIVES of
Zinzendorf).] where are a kind of German Methodist-Quakers to this day,
who have become very celebrated in the interim. An opulent enough, most
silent, strictly regular, strange little Town. The women are in uniform;
wives, maids, widows, each their form of dress. Missionaries, speaking
flabby English, who have been in the West Indies or are going thither,
seem to abound in the place; male population otherwise, I should think,
must be mainly doing trade elsewhere; nothing but prayers, preachings,
charitable boarding-schooling and the like, appeared to be going on.
Herrnhuth is 'a Sabbath Petrified; Calvinistic Sabbath done into Stone,'
as one of my companions called it." [Tourist's Note (Autumn, 1852).]

Herrnhuth, of which all Englishmen have heard, stands near the head of
this our third Neisse; as does Zittau, a few miles higher up. I can do
nothing more to give it mark for them. Bober Valley, then Queiss Valley,
which run parallel though they join at last, and become Bober wholly
before getting into the Oder,--these two Valleys and Rivers lie in
Friedrich's own Territory; and are between him and the Lausitz, Queiss
River being the boundary of Silesia and the Lausitz here. It is down
the Neisse that Prince Karl means to march. There are Saxons already
gathering about Zittau; and down as far as Guben they are making
Magazines and arrangements,--for it is all their own Country in those
years, though most of it is Prussia's now. Prince Karl's march will go
parallel to the Bober and the Queiss; separated from the Queiss in this
part by an undulating Hill-tract of twenty miles or more.

Friedrich has had somewhat to settle for the Southern Frontier of
Silesia withal, which new doggeries of Pandours are invading,--to lie
ready for Prince Karl on his return thither, whose grand meaning all
this while (as Friedrich well knows), is "Silesia in the lump" again,
had he once cut us off from Brandenburg and our supplies! General
Nassau, far eastward, who is doing exploits in Moravia itself,--him
Friedrich has ordered homeward, westward to his own side of the
Mountains, to attend these new Pandour gentlemen; Winterfeld he has
called home, out of those Southern mountains, as likely to be usefuler
here on this Western frontier. Winterfeld arrived in Camp the same day
with Friedrich; and is sent forward with a body of 3,000 light troops,
to keep watch about the Lausitz Frontier and the River Queiss; "careful
not to quit our own side of that stream,"--as we mean to hoodwink Prince
Karl, if we can!

Friedrich lies strictly within his own borders, for a day or two; till
Prince Karl march, till his own arrangements are complete. Friedrich
himself keeps the Bober, Winterfeld the Queiss; "all pass freely out of
the Lausitz; none are allowed to cross into it: thereby we hear notice
of Prince Karl, he none of us." Perfectly quiescent, we, poor creatures,
and aware of nothing! Thus, too, Friedrich--in spite of his warlike
Manifesto, which the Saxons are on the eve of answering with a formal
Declaration of War--affects great rigor in considering the Saxons as not
yet at war with him: respects their frontier, Winterfeld even punishes
hussars "for trespassing on Lausitz ground." Friedrich also affects to
have roads repaired, which he by no means intends to travel:--the whole
with a view of lulling Prince Karl; of keeping the mouse-trap open,
as he had done in the Striegau case. It succeeded again, quite as
conspicuously, and at less expense.

Prince Karl--whose Tolpatch doggery Winterfeld will not allow to pass
the Queiss, and to whom no traveller or tidings can come from beyond
that River--discerns only, on the farther shore of it, Winterfeld with
his 3,000 light troops. Behind these, he discerns either nothing, or
nothing immediately momentous; but contentedly supposes that this, the
superficies of things, is all the solid-content they have. Prince
Karl gets under way, therefore, nothing doubting; with his Saxons as
vanguard. Down the Neisse Valley, on the right or Queiss-ward side of
it: Saturday, 20th November, is his first march in Lusatian territory.
He lies that night spread out in three Villages, Schonberg, Schonbrunn,
Kieslingswalde; [_Feldzuge,_ i. 407 (Bericht von der Action bey
Katholisch-Hennersdorf, &c.).] some ten miles long; parallel to the
Neisse River, and about four miles from it, east or Queiss-ward of it.
Karl himself is rear, at Schonberg; fierce Lobkowitz is centre; the
Saxons are vanguard, 6,000 in all, posted in Villages, which again are
some ten or twelve miles ahead of Prince Karl's forces; the Queiss on
their right hand, and the Naumburg Bridge of Queiss, where Winterfeld
now is, about fifteen miles to east. Their Uhlans circulate through
the intervening space (were much patrolling needed, in such quiet
circumstances), and maintain the due communication. There lies Prince
Karl, on Saturday night, 20th November, 1745; an Army of perhaps 40,000,
dnngerously straggling out above twenty miles long; and appears to see
no difficulty ahead. The Saxons, I think, are to continue where they
are; guarding the flank, while the Prince and Lobkowitz push
forward, closer by Neisse River. In four marches more, they can be in
Brandenburg, with Guben and their Magazines at hand.

Seeing which state of matters, Winterfeld gives Friedrich notice of
it; and that he, Winterfeld, thinks the moment is come. "Pontoons to
Naumburg, then!" orders Friedrich. Winterfeld, at the proper moment, is
to form a Bridge there. One permanent Bridge there already is; and two
fords, one above it, one below: with a second Bridge, there will be
roadway for four columns, and a swift transit when needful. Sunday,
21st, Friedrich quits the Bober, diligently towards Naumburg; marches
Sunday, Monday; Tuesday, 23d, about eleven A.M., begins to arrive there;
Winterfeld and passages all ready. Forward, then, and let us drive in
upon Prince Karl; and either cut him in two, or force him to fight us;
he little thinks where or on what terms. Sure enough, in the worst place
we can choose for him! Friedrich begins crossing in four columns at
one P.M.; crosses continuously for four hours; unopposed, except some
skirmishing of Uhlans, while his Cavalry is riding the Fords to right
and left; Uhlans were driven back swiftly, so soon as the Cavalry got
over. At five in the evening, he has got entirely across, 35,000 horse
and foot: Ziethen is chasing the Uhlans at full speed; who at least will
show us the way,--for by this time a mist has begun falling, and the
brief daylight is done.

Friedrich himself, without waiting for the rear of his force, and some
while before this mist fell (as I judge), is pushing forward, "a miller
lad for his guide," across to Hennersdorf,--Katholisch-Hennersdorf, a
long straggling Village, eight or ten miles off, and itself two miles
long,--where he understands the Saxons are. Miller lad guides us, over
height and hollow, with his best skill, at a brisk pace;--through one
hollow, where he has known the cattle pasture in summer time; but which
proves impassable, and mere quagmire, at this season. No getting through
it, you unfortunate miller lad (GARCON DE MEUNIER). Nevertheless, we did
find passage through the skirts of it: nay this quagmire proved the
luck of us; for the enemy, trusting to it, had no outguard there, never
expecting us on that side. So that the vanguard, Ziethen and rapid
Hussars, made an excellent thing of it. Ziethen sends us word, That he
has got into the body of Hennersdorf,--"found the Saxon Quartermaster
quietly paying his men;"--that he, Ziethen, is tolerably master of
Hennersdorf, and will amuse the enemy till the other force come up.

Of course Friedrich now pushes on, double speed; detaches other force,
horse and foot: which was lucky, says my informant; for the Ziethen
Hussars, getting good plunder, had by no means demolished the Saxons;
but had left them time to draw up in firm order, with a hedge in front,
a little west of the Village;--from which post, unassailable by Ziethen,
they would have got safe off to the main body, with little but an
affront and some loss of goods. The new force--a rapid Katzler
with light horse in the van, cuirassiers and foot rapidly following
him--sweeps past the long Village, "through a thin wood and a defile;"
finds the enemy firmly ranked as above said; cavalry their left,
infantry on right, flanked by an impenetrable hedge; and at once strikes
in. At once, Katzler does, on order given; but is far too weak. Charges,
he; but is counter-charged, tumbled back; the Saxons, horse and foot,
showing excellent fight. At length, more Prussian force coming up,
cuirassiers charge them in front, dragoons in flank, hussars in rear;
all attacking at once, and with a will; and the poor Saxon Cavalry is
entirely cut to shreds.

And now there remains only the Infantry, perhaps about 1,000 men (if one
must guess); who form a square; ply vigorously their field-pieces and
their fire-arms; and cannot be broken by horse-charges. In fact, these
Saxons made a fierce resistance;--till, before long, Prussian Infantry
came up; and, with counter field-pieces and musketries, blasted gaps
in them; upon which the Cavalry got admittance, and reduced the gallant
fellows nearly wholly to annihilation either by death or capture. There
are 914 Prisoners in this Action, 4 big guns, and I know not how many
kettle-drums, standards and the like,--all that were there, I suppose.
The number of dead not given. [Orlich, ii. 291; _Feldzuge,_i. 400-413.]
But, in brief, this Saxon Force is utterly cut to pieces; and only
scattered twos and threes of it rush through the dark mist; scattering
terror to this hand and that. The Prussians take their post at and round
Hennersdorf that night;--bivouacking, though only in sack trousers, a
blanket each man:--"We work hard, my men, and suffer all things for a
day or two, that it may save much work afterwards," said the King to
them; and they cheerfully bivouacked.

This was the Action of Katholisch-Hennersdorf, fought on Tuesday,
23d November, 1745; and still celebrated in the Prussian Annals, and
reckoned a brilliant passage of war. KATHOLISCH-Hennersdorf, some
ten miles southwest of Naumburg ON THE QUEISS (for there are, to my
knowledge, Twenty-five other Villages called Hennersdorf, and Three
several Towns of Naumburg, and many Castles and Hamlets so named in dear
Germany of the Nomenclatures):--Katholisch-Hennersdorf is the place,
and Tuesday about dusk the time. A sharp brush of fighting; not great in
quantity, but laid in at the right moment, in the right place. Like
the prick of a needle, duly sharp, into the spinal marrow of a gigantic
object; totally ruinous to such object. Never, or rarely, in the Annals
of War, was as much good got of so little fighting. You may, with labor
and peril, plunge a hundred dirks into your boaconstrictor; hack him
with axes, bray him with sledge-hammers; that is not uncommon: but the
one true prick in the spinal marrow, and the Artist that can guide you
well to that, he and it are the notable and beneficent phenomena.



PRINCE KARL, CUT IN TWO, TUMBLES HOME AGAIN DOUBLE-QUICK.

Next morning, Wednesday, 24th, the Prussians are early astir again;
groping, on all manner of roads, to find what Prince Karl is doing, in
a world all covered in thick mist. They can find nothing of him, but
broken tumbrils, left baggage-wagons, rumor of universal marching hither
and marching thither;--evidences of an Army fallen into universal St.
Vitus's-Dance; distractedly hurrying to and fro, not knowing whitherward
for the moment, except that it must be homewards, homewards with
velocity.

Prince Karl's farther movements are not worth particularizing. Ordering
and cross-ordering; march this way; no, back again: such a scene in that
mist. Prince Karl is flowing homeward; confusedly deluging and gurgling
southward, the best he can. Next afternoon, near Gorlitz, and again one
other time, he appears drawn up, as if for fighting; but has himself no
such thought; flies again, without a shot; leaves Gorlitz to capitulate,
that afternoon; all places to capitulate, or be evacuated. We hear he is
for Zittau; Winterfeld with light horse hastens after him, gets sight of
him on the Heights at Zittau yonder, [ _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 157;
Orlich, ii. 296.] "about two in the morning:" but the Prince has not
the least notion to fight. Prince leaves Zittau to capitulate,--quits
silently the Heights of Zittau at two A.M. (Winterfeld, very lively in
the rear of him, cutting off his baggage);--and so tumbles, pell-mell,
through the Passes of Gabel, home to Bohemia again. Let us save this
poor Note from the fire:

"On Saturday night, November 27th, the Prussians, pursuing Prince Karl,
were cantoned in the Herrnhuth neighborhood,--my informant's regiment
in the Town of Herrnhuth itself. [_Feldzuge,_ i. ubi supra.] Yes, there
lay the Prussians over Sunday; and might hear some weighty expounder,
if they liked. Considerably theological, many of these poor Prussian
soldiers; carrying a Bible in their knapsack, and devout Psalms in the
heart of them. Two-thirds of every regiment are LANDESKINDER, native
Prussians; each regiment from a special canton,--generally rather
religious men. The other third are recruits, gathered in the Free Towns
of the Reich, or where they can be got; not distinguished by devotion
these, we may fancy, only trained to the uttermost by Spartan drill."

Before the week is done, that "first leg" of the grand Enterprise (the
Prince-Karl leg) is such a leg as we see. "Silesia in the lump,"--fond
dream again, what a dream! Old Dessauer getting signal, where now, too
probably, is Saxony itself?--Ranking again at Aussig in Bohemia, Prince
Karl--5,000 of his men lost, and all impetus and fire gone--falls gently
down the Elbe, to join Rutowski at least; and will reappear within four
weeks, out of Saxon Switzerland, still rather in dismal humor.

The Prussian Troops, in four great Divisions, are cantoned in that
Lausitz Country, now so quiet; in and about Bautzen and three other
Towns of the neighborhood; to rest and be ready for the old Dessauer,
when we hear of him. The "Magazine at Guben in 138 wagons," the Gorlitz
and other Magazines of Prince Karl in the due number of wagons, supply
them with comfortable unexpected provender. Thus they lie cantoned;
and have with despatch effectually settled their part of the problem.
Question now is, How will it stand with the Old Dessauer and his part?
Or, better still, Would not perhaps the Saxons, in this humiliated
state, accept Peace, and finish the matter?



Chapter XIV.--BATTLE OF KESSELSDORF.

A "Correspondence" of a certain Excellency Villiers, English Minister
at Dresden,--Sir Thomas Villiers, Grandfather of the present Earl of
Clarendon,--was very famous in those weeks; and is still worth mention,
as a trait of Friedrich's procedure in this crisis. Friedrich, not
intoxicated with his swift triumph over Prince Karl, but calculating
the perils and the chances still ahead,--miserably off for money
too,--admits to himself that not revenge or triumph, that Peace is the
one thing needful to him. November 29th, Old Leopold is entering Saxony;
and in the same hours, Podewils at Berlin, by order of Friedrich, writes
to Villiers who is in Dresden, about Peace, about mediating for Peace:
"My King ready and desirous, now as at all times, for Peace; the terms
of it known; terms not altered, not alterable, no bargaining or higgling
needed or allowable. CONVENTION OF HANOVER, let his Polish Majesty
accede honestly to that, and all these miseries are ended."
["CORRESPONDANCE DU ROI AVEC SIR THOMAS VILLIERS;" commences, on
Podewils's part, 28th November; on Friedrich's, 4th December; ends,
on Villier's, 18th December; fourteen Pieces in all, four of them
Friedrich's: Given in _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 183-216 (see IB, 158),
and in many other Books.]

Villiers starts instantly on this beneficent business; "goes to Court,
on it, that very night;" Villiers shows himself really diligent,
reasonable, loyal; doing his very best now and afterwards; but has no
success at all. Polish Majesty is obstinate,--I always think, in the way
sheep are, when they feel themselves too much put upon;--and is deaf
to everybody but Bruhl. Bruhl answers: "Let his Prussian Majesty retire
from our Territory;--what is he doing in the Lausitz just now! Retire
from our Territory; THEN we will treat!" Bruhl still refuses to be
desperate of his bad game;--at any rate, Bruhl's rage is yellower
than ever. That, very evening, while talking to Villiers, he has had
preparations going on;--and next morning takes his Master, Polish
Majesty August III., with some comfortable minimum of apparatus
(cigar-boxes not forgotten), off to Prag, where they can be out of
danger till the thing decide itself. Villiers follows to Prag; desists
not from his eloquent Letters, and earnest persuasions at Prag; but
begins to perceive that the means of persuading Bruhl will be a much
heavier kind of artillery.

On the whole, negotiations have yet done little. Britannic George,
though Purseholder, what is his success here? As little is the Russian
Bugbear persuasive on Friedrich himself. The Czarina of the Russias, a
luxurious lady, of far more weight than insight, has just notified to
him, with more emphasis than ever, That he shall not attack Saxony; that
if he do, she with considerable vigor will attack him! That has always
been a formidable puzzle for Friedrich: however, he reflects that the
Russians never could draw sword, or be ready with their Army, in less
than six months, probably not in twelve; and has answered, translating
it into polite official terms: "Fee-faw-fum, your Czarish Majesty!
Question is not now of attacking, but of being myself attacked!"--and so
is now running his risks with the Czarina.

Still worse was the result he got from Louis XV. Lately, "for form's
sake," as he tells us, "and not expecting anything," he had (November
15th) made a new appeal to France: "Ruin menacing your Most Christian
Majesty's Ally, in this huge sudden crisis of invasive Austrian-Saxons;
and for your Majesty's sake, may I not in some measure say?" To which
Louis's Answer is also given. A very sickly, unpleasant Document;
testifying to considerable pique against Friedrich;--Ranke says, it was
a joint production, all the Ministers gradually contributing each his
little pinch of irony to make it spicier, and Louis signing when it was
enough;--very considerable pique against Friedrich; and something of the
stupid sulkiness as of a fat bad boy, almost glad that the house is on
fire, because it will burn his nimble younger brother, whom everybody
calls so clever: "Sorry indeed, Sir my Brother, most sorry:--and so
you have actually signed that HANOVER CONVENTION with our worst Enemy?
France is far from having done so; France has done, and will do, great
things. Our Royal heart grieves much at your situation; but is not
alarmed; no, Your Majesty has such invention, vigor and ability,
superior to any crisis, our clever younger Brother! And herewith we
pray God to have you in his holy keeping." This is the purport of King
Louis's Letter;--which Friedrich folds together again, looking up from
perusal of it, we may fancy with what a glance of those eyes. [Louis's
Original, in _OEuvres de Frederic,_ iii. 173, 174 (with a much
more satirical paraphrase than the above), and Friedrich's Answer
adjoined,--after the events had come.]

He is getting instructed, this young King, as to alliances, grand
combinations, French and other. His third Note to Villiers intimates,
"It being evident that his Polish Majesty will have nothing from us
but fighting, we must try to give it him of the best kind we have."
["Bautzen, 11th December, 1745" (UBI SUPRA).] Yes truly; it is the
ULTIMATE persuasive, that. Here, in condensed form, are the essential
details of the course it went, in this instance:--General Grune, on
the road to Berlin, hearing of the rout at Hennersdorf, halted
instantly,--hastened back to Saxony, to join Rutowski there, and stand
on the defensive. Not now in that Halle-Frontier region (Rutowski has
quitted that, and all the intrenchments and marshy impregnabilities
there); not on that Halle-Frontier, but hovering about in the
interior, Rutowski and Grune are in junction; gravitating towards
Dresden;--expecting Prince Karl's advent; who ought to emerge from the
Saxon Switzerland in few days, were he sharp; and again enable us to
make a formidable figure. Be speedy, Old Dessauer: you must settle the
Grune-Rutowski account before that junction, not after it!

The Old Dessauer has been tolerably successful, and by no means thinks
he has been losing time. November 29th, "at three in the morning," he
stept over into Saxony with its impregnable camps; drove Rutowski's
rear-guard, or remnant, out of the quagmires, canals and intrenchments,
before daylight; drove it, that same evening, or before dawn of the
morrow, out of Leipzig: has seized that Town,--lays heavy contribution
on it, nearly 50,000 pounds (such our strait for finance), "and be sure
you take only substantial men as sureties!" [Orlich, ii. 308.]--and
will, and does after a two days' rest, advance with decent celerity
inwards; though "One must first know exactly whither; one must have
bread, and preparations and precautions; do all things solidly and in
order," thinks the Old Dessauer. Friedrich well knows the whither; and
that Dresden itself is, or may be made, the place for falling in with
Rutowski. Friedrich is now himself ready to join, from the Bautzen
region; the days and hours precious to him; and spurs the Old Dessauer
with the sharpest remonstrances. "All solidly and in order, your
Majesty!" answers the Old Dessauer: solid strong-boned old coach-horse,
who has his own modes of trotting, having done many a heavy mile of it
in his time; and whose skin, one hopes, is of the due thickness against
undue spurring.

Old Dessauer wishes two things: bread to live upon; and a sure Bridge
over the Elbe whereby Friedrich may join him. Old Dessauer makes for
Torgau, far north, where is both an Elbe Bridge and a Magazine; which he
takes; Torgau and pertinents now his. But it is far down the Elbe, far
off from Bautzen and Friedrich: "A nearer Bridge and rendezvous, your
Highness! Meissen [where they make the china, only fifty miles from me,
and twenty from Dresden], let that be the Bridge, now that you have got
victual. And speedy; for Heaven's sake, speedy!" Friedrich pushes out
General Lehwald from Bautzen, with 4,000 men, towards Meissen Bridge;
Lehwald does not himself meddle with the Bridge, only fires shot across
upon the Saxon party, till the Old Dessauer, on the other bank, come
up;--and the Old Dessauer, impatience thinks, will never come. "Three
days in Torgau, yes, Your Majesty: I had bread to bake, and the very
ovens had to be built." A solid old roadster, with his own modes of
trotting; needs thickness of skin. [Friedrich's Letters to Leopold, in
Orlich, ii. 431, 435 (6th-10th December, 1745).]

At long last, on Sunday, 12th December, about two P.M., the Old Dessauer
does appear; or General Gessler, his vanguard, does appear,--Gessler of
the sixty-seven standards,--"always about an hour ahead." Gessler has
summoned Meissen; has not got it, is haggling with it about terms, when,
towards sunset of the short day, Old Dessauer himself arrives. Whereupon
the Saxon Commandant quits the Bridge (not much breaking it); and glides
off in the dark, clear out of Meissen, towards Dresden,--chased, but
successfully defending himself. [See Plan, p. 10.] "Had he but stood out
for two days!" say the Saxons,--"Prince Karl had then been up, and much
might have been different." Well, Friedrich too would have been up,
and it had most likely been the same on a larger scale. But the Saxon
Commandant did not stand out; he glided off, safe; joined Rutowski and
Grune, who are lying about Wilsdruf, six or seven miles on the hither
side of Dresden, and eagerly waiting for Prince Karl. "Bridge and Town
of Meissen are your Majesty's," reports the Old Dessauer that night:
upon which Friedrich instantly rises, hastening thitherward. Lehwald
comes across Meissen Bridge, effects the desired junction; and all
Monday the Old Dessauer defiles through Meissen town and territory;
continually advances towards Dresden, the Saxons harassing the flanks
of him a little,--nay in one defile, being sharp strenuous fellows, they
threw his rear into some confusion; cut off certain carts and prisoners,
and the life of one brave General, Lieutenant-General Roel, who had
charge there. "Spurring one's trot into a gallop! This comes of your
fast marching, of your spurring beyond the rules of war!" thinks Old
Leopold; and Friedrich, who knows otherwise, is very angry for a moment.

But indeed the crisis is pressing. Prince Karl is across the Metal
Mountains, nearing Dresden from the east; Friedrich strikes into march
for the same point by Meissen, so soon as the Bridge is his. Old Leopold
is advancing thither from the westward,--steadily hour by hour; Dresden
City the fateful goal. There,--in these middle days of December, 1745
(Highland Rebellion just whirling back from Derby again, "the London
shops shut for one day"),--it is clear there will be a big and bloody
game played before we are much older. Very sad indeed: but Count Bruhl
is not persuadable otherwise. By slumbering and sluggarding, over their
money-tills and flesh-pots; trying to take evil for good, and to say,
"It will do," when it will not do, respectable Nations come at last
to be governed by Bruhls; cannot help themselves;--and get their backs
broken in consequence. Why not? Would you have a Nation live forever
that is content to be governed by Bruhls? The gods are wiser!--It is now
the 13th; Old Dessauer tramping forward, hour by hour, towards Dresden
and some field of Fate.

On Tuesday, 14th, by break of day, Old Dessauer gets on march again;
in four columns, in battle order; steady all day,--hard winter weather,
ground crisp, and flecked with snow. The Pass at Neustadt, "his cavalry
went into it at full gallop;" but found nobody there. That night
he encamps at a place called Rohrsdorf; which may be eight miles
west-by-north from Dresden, as the crow flies; and ten or more, if you
follow the highway round by Wilsdruf on your right. The real direct
Highway from Meissen to Dresden is on the other side of the Elbe, and
keeps by the River-bank, a fine level road; but on this western side,
where Leopold now is, the road is inland, and goes with a bend. Leopold,
of course, keeps command of this road; his columns are on both sides of
it, River on their left at some miles distance; and incessantly expect
to find Rutowski, drawn out on favorable ground somewhere. The country
is of fertile, but very broken character; intersected by many
brooks, making obliquely towards the Elbe (obliquely, with a leaning
Meissen-wards); country always mounting, till here about Rohrsdorf we
seem to have almost reached the watershed, and the brooks make for the
Elbe, leaning Dresden way. Good posts abound in such broken country,
with its villages and brooks, with its thickets, hedges and patches of
swamp. But Rutowski has not appeared anywhere, during this Tuesday.

Our four columns, therefore, lie all night, under arms, about Rohrsdorf:
and again by morrow's dawn are astir in the old order, crunching far
and wide the frozen ground; and advance, charged to the muzzle with
potential battle. Slightly upwards always, to the actual watershed
of the country; leaving Wilsdruf a little to their right. Wilsdruf is
hardly past, when see, from this broad table-land, top of the country:
"Yonder is Rutowski, at last;--and this new Wednesday will be a day!"
Yonder, sure enough: drawn out three or four miles long; with his
right to the Elbe, his left to that intricate Village of Kesselsdorf;
bristling with cannon; deep gullet and swampy brook in front of him: the
strongest post a man could have chosen in those parts.

The Village of Kesselsdorf itself lies rather in a hollow; in the slight
beginning, or uppermost extremity, of a little Valley or Dell, called
the Tschonengrund,--which, with its quaggy brook of a Tschone, wends
northeastward into the Elbe, a course of four or five miles: a little
Valley very deep for its length, and getting altogether chasmy and
precipitous towards the Elbe-ward or lower end. Kesselsdorf itself,
as we said, is mainly in a kind of hollow: between Old Leopold and
Kesselsdorf the ground rather mounts; and there is perceptibly a flat
knoll or rise at the head of it, where the Village begins. Some trees
there, and abundance of cannon and grenadiers at this moment. It is the
southwestern or left-most point of Rutowski's line; impregnable with
its cannon-batteries and grenadiers. Rightward Rutowski extends in long
lines, with the quaggy-dell of Tschonengrund in front of him, parallel
to him; Dell ever deepening as it goes. Northeastward, at the extreme
right, or Elbe point of it, where Grune and the Austrians stand, it has
grown so chasmy, we judge that Grune can neither advance nor be

MAP/PLAN GOES HERE--book 15 continuation --page 10--

advanced upon:e,--which he did all day,
in a purely meditative posture. Rutowski numbers 35,000, now on this
ground, with immensity of cannon; 32,000 we, with only the usual
field-artillery, and such a Tschonengrund, with its half-frozen
quagmires ahead. A ticklish case for the old man, as he grimly
reconnoitres it, in the winter morning.

Grim Old Dessauer having reconnoitred, and rapidly considered, decides
to try it,--what else?--will range himself on the west side of that
Tschonengrund, horse and foot; two lines, wide as Rutowski opposite him;
but means to direct his main and prime effort against Kesselsdorf, which
is clearly the key of the position, if it can be taken. For which end
the Old Dessauer lengthens himself out to rightward, so as to outflank
Kesselsdorf;--neglecting Grune (refusing Grune, as the soldiers
say):--"our horse of the right wing reached from the Wood called
Lerchenbusoh (LARCH-BUSH) rightward as far as Freyberg road; foot
all between that Lerchenbusch and the big Birch-tree on the road to
Wilsdruf; horse of the left wing, from there to Roitsch." [Stille (p.
181), who was present. See Plan.] It was about two P.M. before the old
man got all his deployments completed; what corps of his, deploying this
way or that, came within wind of Kesselsdorf, were saluted with cannon,
thirty pieces or more, which are in battery, in three batteries, on the
knoll there; but otherwise no fighting as yet. At two, the Old Dessauer
is complete; he reverently doffs his hat, as had always been his wont,
in prayer to God, before going in. A grim fervor of prayer is in his
heart, doubtless; though the words as reported are not very regular or
orthodox: "O HERR GOTT, help me yet this once; let me not be disgraced
in my old days! Or if thou wilt not help me, don't help those HUNDSVOGTE
[damned Scoundrels, so to speak], but leave us to try it ourselves!"
That is the Old Scandinavian of a Dessauer's prayer; a kind of GODUR
he too, Priest as well as Captain: Prayer mythically true as given;
mythically, not otherwise. [Ranke, iii. 334 n.] Which done, he waves his
hat once, "On, in God's name!" and the storm is loose. Prussian right
wing pushing grandly forward, bent in that manner, to take Kesselsdorf
and its fire-throats in flank.

The Prussians tramp on with the usual grim-browed resolution, foot
in front, horse in rear; but they have a terrible problem at that
Kesselsdorf, with its retrenched batteries, and numerous grenadiers
fighting under cover. The very ground is sore against them; uphill, and
the trampled snow wearing into a slide, so that you sprawl and stagger
sadly. Thirty-one big guns, and about 9,000 small, pouring out mere
death on you, from that knoll-head. The Prussians stagger; cannot stand
it; bend to rightwards, and get out of shot-range; cannot manage it
this bout. Rally, reinforce; try it again. Again, with a will; but again
there is not a way. The Prussians are again repulsed; fall back, down
this slippery course, in more disorder than the first time. Had the
Saxons stood still, steadily handling arms, how, on such terms, could
the Prussians ever have managed it?

But at sight of this second repulse, the Saxon grenadiers, and
especially one battalion of Austrians who were there (the only Austrians
who fought this day), gave a shout "Victory!"--and in the height of
their enthusiasm, rushed out, this Austrian battalion first and the
Saxons after them, to charge these Prussians, and sweep the world clear
of them. It was the ruin of their battle; a fatal hollaing before you
are out of the woods. Old Leopold, quick as thought, noticing the thing,
hurls cavalry on these victorious down-plunging grenadiers; slashes them
asunder, into mere recoiling whirlpools of ruin; so that "few of
them got back unwounded;" and the Prussians storming in along with
them,--aided by ever new Prussians, from beyond the Tschonengrund
even,--the place was at length carried; and the Saxon battle became
hopeless.

For, their right being in such hurricane, the Prussians from the
centre, as we hint, storm forward withal; will not be held back by the
Tschonengrund. They find the Tschonengrund quaggy in the extreme, "brook
frozen at the sides, but waist-deep of liquid mud in the centre;" cross
it, nevertheless, towards the upper part of it,--young Moritz of Dessau
leading the way, to help his old Father in extremity. They climb the
opposite side,--quite slippery in places, but "helping one another
up;"--no Saxons there till you get fairly atop, which was an oversight
on the Saxon part. Fairly atop, Moritz is saluted by the Saxons with
diligent musket-volleys; but Moritz also has musket-volleys in him,
bayonet-charges in him; eager to help his old Papa at this hard pinch.
Old Papa has the Saxons in flank; sends more and ever more other cavalry
in on them; and in fact, the right wing altogether storms violently
through Kesselsdorf, and sweeps it clean. Whole regiments of the Saxons
are made prisoners; Roel's Light Horse we see there, taking standards;
cutting violently in to avenge Roel's death, and the affront they had
at Meissen lately. Furious Moritz on their front, from across the
Tschonengrund; furious Roel (GHOST of Roel) and others in their flank,
through Kesselsdorf: no standing for the Saxons longer.

About nightfall,--their horse having made poorish fight, though the foot
had stood to it like men,--they roll universally away. The Prussian left
wing of horse are summoned through the Tschonengrund to chase: had there
remained another hour of daylight, the Saxon Army had been one wide
ruin. Hidden in darkness, the Saxon Army ebbed confusedly towards
Dresden: with the loss of 6,000 prisoners and 3,000 killed and wounded:
a completely beaten Army. It is the last battle the Saxons fought as
a Nation,--or probably will fight. Battle called of Kesselsdorf:
Wednesday, 15th December, 1745.

Prince Karl had arrived at Dresden the night before; heard all this
volleying and cannonading, from the distance; but did not see good to
interfere at all. Too wide apart, some say; quartered at unreasonably
distant villages, by some irrefragable ignorant War-clerk of Bruhl's
appointing,--fatal Bruhl. Others say, his Highness had himself no mind;
and made excuses that his troops were tired, disheartened by the two
beatings lately,--what will become of us in case of a third or fourth!
It is certain, Prince Karl did nothing. Nor has Grime's corps, the
right wing, done anything except meditate:--it stood there unattacked,
unattacking; till deep in the dark night, when Rutowski remembered
it, and sent it order to come home. One Austrian battalion, that of
grenadiers on the knoll at Kesselsdorf, did actually fight;--and did
begin that fatal outbreak, and quitting of the post there; "which lost
the Battle to us!" say the Saxons.

Had those grenadiers stood in their place, there is no Prussian but
admits that it would have been a terrible business to take Kesselsdorf
and its batteries. But they did not stand; they rushed out, shouting
"Victory;" and lost us the battle. And that is the good we have got of
the sublime Austrian Alliance; and that is the pass our grand scheme
of Partitioning Prussia has come to? Fatal little Bruhl of the three
hundred and sixty-five clothes-suits; Valet fatally become divine in
Valet-hood,--are not you costing your Country dear!

Old Dessauer, glorious in the last of his fields, lay on his arms all
night in the posts about; three bullets through his roquelaure, no
scratch of wound upon the old man. Young Moritz too "had a bullet
through his coat-skirt, and three horses shot under him; but no hurt,
the Almighty's grace preserving him." [_Feldzuge,_i. 434.] This Moritz
is the Third of the Brothers, age now thirty-three; and we shall hear
considerably about him in times coming. A lean, tall, austere man; and,
"of all the Brothers, most resembled his Father in his ways." Prince
Dietrich is in Leipzig at present; looking to that contribution of
50,000 pounds; to that, and to other contributions and necessary
matters;--and has done all his fighting (as it chanced), though he
survived his Brothers many years. Old Papa will now get his discharge
before long (quite suddenly, one morning, by paralytic stroke, 7th
April, 1747); and rest honorably with the Sons of Thor. [Young Leopold,
the successor, died 16th December, 1751, age fifty-two; Dietrich (who
had thereupon quitted soldiering, to take charge of his Nephew left
minor, and did not resume it), died 2d December, 1769; Moritz (soldier
to the last), 11th April, 1760. See _Militair-Lexikon,_i. 43, 34,
38,47.]



Chapter XV.--PEACE OF DRESDEN: FRIEDRICH DOES MARCH HOME.

Friedrich himself had got to Meissen, Tuesday, 14th; no enemy on his
road, or none to speak of: Friedrich was there, or not yet far across,
all Wednesday; collecting himself, waiting, on the slip, for a signal
from Old Leopold. Sound of cannon, up the Elbe Dresden-ward, is
reported there to Friedrich, that afternoon: cannon, sure enough, notes
Friedrich; and deep dim-rolling peals, as of volleying small-arms;
"the sky all on fire over there," as the hoar-frosty evening fell. Old
Leopold busy at it, seemingly. That is the glare of the Old Dessauer's
countenance; who is giving voice, in that manner, to the earthly and the
heavenly powers; conquering Peace for us, let us hope!

Friedrich, as may be supposed, made his best speed next morning: "All
well!" say the messengers; all well, says Old Leopold, whom he meets
at Wilsdruf, and welcomes with a joyful embrace; "dismounting from his
horse, at sight of Leopold, and advancing to meet him with doffed hat
and open arms,"--and such words and treatments, that day, as made the
old man's face visibly shine. "Your Highness shall conduct me!" And the
two made survey together of the actual Field of Kesselsdorf; strewn with
the ghastly wrecks of battle,--many citizens of Dresden strolling about,
or sorrowfully seeking for their lost ones among the wounded and dead.
No hurt to these poor citizens, who dread none; help to them rather:
such is Friedrich's mind,--concerning which, in the Anecdote-Books,
there are Narratives (not worth giving) of a vapidly romantic character,
credible though inexact. [For the indisputable pa so we leave him
standing therrt, see Orlich, ii. 343, 344; and _OEuvres de
Frederic,_ iii. 170.] Friedrich, who may well be profuse of thanks and
praises, charms the Old Dessauer while they walk together; brave old man
with his holed roquelaure. For certain, he has done the work there,--a
great deal of work in his time! Joy looks through his old rough face, of
gunpowder color: the Herr Gott has not delivered him to those damned
Scoundrels in the end of his days.--On the morrow, Friday, Leopold
rolled grandly forward upon Dresden; Rutowski and Prince Karl vanishing
into the Metal Mountains, by Pirna, for Bohemia, at sound of him,--as he
had scarcely hoped they would.

On the Saturday evening, Dresden, capable of not the least defence, has
opened all its gates, and Friedrich and the Prussians are in Dresden;
Austrians and wrecked Saxons falling back diligently towards the Metal
Mountains for Bohemia, diligent to clear the road for him. Queen and
Junior Princes are here; to whom, as to all men, Friedrich is courtesy
itself; making personal visit to the Royalties, appointing guards of
honor, sacred respect to the Royal Houses; himself will lodge at the
Princess Lubomirski's, a private mansion.

"That ferocious, false, ambitious King of Prussia"--Well, he is not to
be ruined in open fight, on the contrary is ruinous there; nor by the
cunningest ambuscades, and secret combinations, in field or cabinet: our
overwhelming Winter Invasion of him--see where it has ended! Bruhl and
Polish Majesty--the nocturnal sky all on fire in those parts, and loud
general doomsday come--are a much-illuminated pair of gentlemen.

From the time Meissen Bridge was lost, Prince Karl too showing himself
so languid, even Bruhl had discerned that the case was desperate. On the
very day of Kesselsdorf,--not the day BEFORE, which would have been
such a thrift to Bruhl and others!--Friedrich had a Note from Villiers,
signifying joyfully that his Polish Majesty would accept Peace. Thanks
to his Polish Majesty:--and after Kesselsdorf, perhaps the Empress-Queen
too will! Friedrich's offers are precisely what they were, what they
have always been: "Convention of Hanover; that, in all its parts; old
treaty of Breslau, to be guaranteed, to be actually kept. To me Silesia
sure;--from you, Polish Majesty, one million crowns as damages for
the trouble and cost this Triple Ambuscade of yours has given me; one
million crowns, 150,000 pounds we will say; and all other requisitions
to cease on the day of signature. These are my terms: accept these; then
wholly, As you were, Empress-Queen and you, and all surviving creatures:
and I march home within a week." Villiers speeds rapidly from Prag, with
the due olive-branch; with Count Harrach, experienced Austrian, and full
powers. Harrach cannot believe his senses: "Such the terms to be still
granted, after all these beatings and rebeatings!"--then at last does
believe, with stiff thankfulness and Austrian bows. The Negotiation need
not occupy many hours.

"His Majesty of Prussia was far too hasty with this Peace," says Valori:
"he had taken a threap that he would have it finished before the Year
was done:"--in fact, he knows his own mind, MON GROS VALORI, and that
is what few do. You shear through no end of cobwebs with that fine
implement, a wisely fixed resolution of your own. A Peace slow enough
for Valori and the French: where could that be looked for?--Valori is at
Berlin, in complete disgrace; his Most Christian King having behaved so
like a Turk of late. Valori, horror-struck at such Peace, what shall
he do to prevent it, to retard it? One effort at least. D'Arget his
Secretary, stolen at Jaromirz, is safe back to him; ingenious, ingenuous
D'Arget was always a favorite with Friedrich: despatch D'Arget to
him. D'Arget is despatched; with reasons, with remonstrances, with
considerations. D'Arget's Narrative is given: an ingenuous off-hand
Piece;--poor little crevice, through which there is still to be had,
singularly clear, and credible in every point, a direct glimpse of
Friedrich's own thoughts, in that many-sounding Dresden,--so loud,
that week, with dinner-parties, with operas, balls, Prussian war-drums,
grand-parades and Peace-negotiations.


        THE SIEUR D'ARGET TO EXCELLENCY VALORI (at Berlin).

                     "DRESDEN, 1745" (dateless otherwise, must be
                           December, between 18th and 25th).
"MONSEIGNEUR,--I arrived yesterday at 7 P.M.; as I had the honor of
forewarning you, by the word I wrote to the Abbe [never mind what Abbe;
another Valori-Clerk] from Sonnenwalde [my half-way house between Berlin
and this City]. I went, first of all, to M. de Vaugrenand," our Envoy
here; "who had the goodness to open himself to me on the Business now
on hand. In my opinion, nothing can be added to the excellent
considerations he has been urging on the King of Prussia and the Count
de Podewils.

"At half-past 8, I went to his Prussian Majesty's; I found he was
engaged with his Concert,"--lodges in the Lubomirski Palace, has his
snatch of melody in the evening of such discordant days,--"and I could
not see him till after half-past 9. I announced myself to M. Eichel; he
was too overwhelmed with affairs to give me audience. I asked for Count
Rothenburg; he was at cards with the Princess Lubomirski. At last, I did
get to the King: who received me in the most agreeable way; but was just
going to Supper; said he must put off answering till to-morrow morning,
morning of this day. M. de Vaugrenand had been so good as prepare me on
the rumors of a Peace with Saxony and the Queen of Hungary. I went to M.
Podewils; who said a great many kind things to me for you. I could only
sketch out the matter, at that time; and represented to Podewils the
brilliant position of his Master, who had become Arbiter of the Peace
of Europe; that the moment was come for making this Peace a General One,
and that perhaps there would be room for repentance afterwards, if the
opportunity were slighted. He said, his Master's object was that same;
and thus closed the conversation by general questions.

"This morning, I again presented myself at the King of Prussia's. I had
to wait, and wait; in fine, it was not till half-past 5 in the evening
that he returned, or gave me admittance; and I stayed with him till
after 7,"--when Concert-time was at hand again. Listen to a remarkable
Dialogue, of the Conquering Hero with a humble Friend whom he likes.
"His Majesty condescended (A DAIGNE) to enter with me into all manner of
details; and began by telling me,

"That M. de Valori had done admirably not to come, himself, with that
Letter from the King [Most Christian, OUR King; Letter, the sickly
Document above spoken of]; that there could not have been an Answer
expected,--the Letter being almost of ironical strain; his Majesty [Most
Christian] not giving him the least hope, but merely talking of his fine
genius, and how that would extricate him from the perilous entanglement,
and inspire him with a wise resolution in the matter! That he had, in
effect, taken a resolution the wisest he could; and was making his Peace
with Saxony and the Queen of Hungary. That he had felt all the dangers
of the difficult situations he had been in,"--sheer destruction
yawning all round him, in huge imminency, more than once, and no
friend heeding;--"that, weary of playing always double-or-quits, he had
determined to end it, and get into a state of tranquillity, which both
himself and his People had such need of. That France could not, without
difficulty, have remedied his mishaps; and that he saw by the King's
Letter, there was not even the wish to do it. That his, Friedrich's,
military career was completed,"--so far as HE could foresee or
decide! "That he would not again expose his Country to the Caprices of
Fortune, whose past constancy to him was sufficiently astonishing to
raise fears of a reverse (HEAR!). That his ambitions were fulfilled, in
having compelled his Enemies to ask Peace from him in their own Capital,
with the Chancellor of Bohemia [Harrach, typifying fallen Austrian
pride] obliged to co-operate.

"That he would always be attached to our King's interests, and set
all the value in the world on his friendship; but that he had not been
sufficiently assisted to be content. That, observing henceforth an
exact neutrality, he might be enabled to do offices of mediation; and to
carry, to the one side and to the other, words of peace. That he offered
himself for that object, and would be charmed to help in it; but that he
was fixed to stop there. That in regard to the basis of General Peace,
he had Two Ideas [which the reader can attend to, and see where they
differed from the Event, and where not]:--One was, That France should
keep Ypres, Furnes, Tournay [which France did not], giving up the
Netherlands otherwise, with Ostend, to the English [to the English!]
in exchange for Cape Breton. The other was, To give up more of our
Conquests [we gave them all up, and got only the glory, and our
Cod-fishery, Cape Breton, back, the English being equally generous], and
bargain for liberty to re-establish Dunkirk in its old condition [not
a word of your Dunkirk; there is your Cape Breton, and we also will go
home with what glory there is,--not difficult to carry!]. But that it
was by England we must make the overtures, without addressing ourselves
to the Court of Vienna; and put it in his, Friedrich's, power to propose
a receivable Project of Peace. That he well conceived the great point
was the Queen of Spain [Termagant and Jenkins's Ear; Termagant's
Husband, still living, is a lappet of Termagant's self]: but that she
must content herself with Parma and Piacenza for the Infant, Don Philip
[which the Termagant did]; and give back her hold of Savoy [partial
hold, of no use to her without the Passes] to the King of Sardinia." And
of the JENKINS'S-EAR question, generous England will say nothing? Next
to nothing; hopes a modicum of putty and diplomatic varnish may close
that troublesome question,--which springs, meanwhile, in the centre of
the world!--

"These kind condescensions of his Majesty emboldened me to represent to
him the brilliant position he now held; and how noble it would be,
after having been the Hero of Germany, to become, instead of one's own
pacificator, the Pacificator of Europe. 'I grant you,' said he, (MON
CHER D'Arget; but it is too dangerous a part for playing. A reverse
brings me to the edge of ruin: I know too well the mood of mind I
was in, last time I left Berlin with that Three-legged Immensity of
Atropos, NOT yet mown down at Hennersdorf by a lucky cut), ever to
expose myself to it again! If luck had been against me there, I saw
myself a Monarch without throne; and my subjects in the cruelest
oppression. A bad game that: always, mere CHECK TO YOUR KING; no other
move;--I refer it to you, friend D'Arget:--in fine, I wish to be at
peace.'

"I represented to him that the House of Austria would never, with a
tranquil eye, see his House in possession of Silesia. 'Those that come
after me,' said he, 'will do as they like; the Future is beyond man's
reach. Those that come after will do as they can. I have acquired; it is
theirs to preserve. I am not in alarm about the Austrians;--and this
is my answer to what you have been saying about the weakness of my
guarantees. They dread my Army; the luck that I have. I am sure of
their sitting quiet for the dozen years or so which may remain to me of
life;--quiet till I have, most likely, done with it. What! Are we never
to have any good of our life, then (NE DOIS-JE DONC JAMAIS JOUIR)? There
is more for me in the true greatness of laboring for the happiness of
my subjects, than in the repose of Europe. I have put Saxony out of a
condition to do hurt. She owes 14,775,000 crowns of debt [two millions
and a quarter sterling]; and by the Defensive Alliance which I form with
her, I provide myself [but ask Bruhl withal!] a help against Austria. I
would not henceforth attack a cat, except to defend myself.' ["These
are his very words," adds D'Arget;--and well worth noting.] (Ambition
(GLOIRE) and my interests were the occasion of my first Campaigns.
The late Kaiser's situation, and my zeal for France [not to mention
interests again], gave rise to these second: and I have been fighting
always since for my own hearths,--for my very existence, I might say!
Once more, I know the state I had got into:--if I saw Prince Karl at
the gates of Paris, I would not stir.'--'And us at the gates of Vienna,'
answered I promptly, 'with the same indifference?'--'Yes; and I swear
it to you, D'Arget. In a word, I want to have some good of my life (VEUX
JOUIR). What are we, poor human atoms, to get up projects that cost so
much blood? Let us live, and help to live.'

"The rest of the conversation passed in general talk, about Literature,
Theatres and such objects. My reasonings and objectings, on the great
matter, I need not farther detail: by the frank discourse his Prussian
Majesty was kind enough to go into, you may gather perhaps that my
arguments were various, and not ill-chosen;--and it is too evident they
have all been in vain."--Your Excellency's (really in a very faithful
way)-- D'ARGET. [Valori, i. 290-294 (no date, except "Dresden,
1745,"--sleepy Editor feeling no want of any).]

D'Arget, about a month after this, was taken into Friedrich's service;
Valori consenting, whose occupation was now gone;--and we shall hear of
D'Arget again. Take this small Note, as summary of him: "D'Arget (18th
January, 1746) had some title, 'Secretary at Orders (SECRETAIRE DES
COMMANDEMENTS),' bit of pension; and continued in the character of
reader, or miscellaneous literary attendant and agent, very much liked
by his Master, for six years coming. A man much heard of, during those
years of office. March, 1752, having lost his dear little Prussian Wife,
and got into ill health and spirits, he retired on leave to Paris; and
next year had to give up the thought of returning;--though he still, and
to the end, continued loyally attached to his old Master, and more
or less in correspondence with him. Had got, before long, not through
Friedrich's influence at Paris, some small Appointment in the ECOLE
MILITAIRE there. He is, of all the Frenchmen Friedrich had about him,
with the exception of D'Argens alone, the most honest-hearted. The above
Letter, lucid, innocent, modest, altogether rational and practical, is
a fair specimen of D'Arget: add to it the prompt self-sacrifice (and in
that fine silent way) at Jaromirz for Valori, and readers may conceive
the man. He lived at Paris, in meagre but contented fashion, RUE
DE L'ECOLE MILITAIRE, till 1778; and seems, of all the Ex-Prussian
Frenchmen, to have known most about Friedrich; and to have never spoken
any falsity against him. Duvernet, the 'M----' Biographer of VOLTAIRE,
frequented him a good deal; and any true notions, or glimmerings of
such, that he has about Prussia, are probably ascribable to D'Arget."
[See _OEuvres de Frederic,_ xx. (p. xii of PREFACE to the D'ARGET
CORRESPONDENCE there).]

The Treaty of Dresden can be read in Scholl, Flassan, Rousset, Adelung;
but, except on compulsion, no creature will now read it,--nor did this
Editor, even he, find it pay. Peace is made. Peace of Dresden is signed,
Christmas Day, 1745: "To me Silesia, without farther treachery or trick;
you, wholly as you were." Europe at large, as Friedrich had done, sees
"the sky all on fire about Dresden." The fierce big battles done against
this man have, one and all of them, become big defeats. The strenuous
machinations, high-built plans cunningly devised,--the utmost sum-total
of what the Imperial and Royal Potencies can, for the life of them, do:
behold, it has all tumbled down here, in loud crash; the final peal of
it at Kesselsdorf; and the consummation is flame and smoke, conspicuous
over all the Nations. You will let him keep his own henceforth, then,
will you? Silesia, which was NOT yours nor ever shall be? Silesia and
no afterthought? The Saxons sign, the high Plenipotentiaries all; in the
eyes of Villiers, I am told, were seen sublimely pious tears.
Harrach, bowing with stiff, almost incredulous, gratitude, swears and
signs;--hurries home to his Sovereign Lady, with Peace, and such a smile
on his face; and on her Imperial Majesty's such a smile!--readers shall
conceive it.

There are but Two new points in the Treaty of Dresden,--nay properly
there is but One point, about which posterity can have the least care
or interest; for that other, concerning "The Toll of Schidlo," and
settlement of haggles on the Navigation of the Elbe there, was not
kept by the Saxons, but continued a haggle still: this One point is
the Eleventh Article. Inconceivably small; but liable to turn up on
us again, in a memorable manner. That let us translate,--for M.
de Voltaire's sake, and time coming! STEUER means Land-Tax;
OBER-STEUER-EINNAHME will be something like Royal Exchequer, therefore;
and STEUER-SCHEIN will be approximately equivalent to Exchequer Bill.
Article Eleventh stipulates:

"All subjects and servants of his Majesty the King of Prussia who hold
bonds of the Saxon OBER-STEUER-EINNAHME shall be paid in full, capital
and interest, at the times, and to the amount, specified in said
STEUER-SCHEINE or Bonds." That is Article Eleventh.--"The Saxon
Exchequer," says an old Note on it, "thanks to Bruhl's extravagance, has
been as good as bankrupt, paying with inconvertible paper, with SCHEINE
(Things to be SHOWN), for some time past; which paper has accordingly
sunk, let us say, 25 per cent below its nominal amount in gold. All
Prussian subjects, who hold these Bonds, are to be paid in gold; Saxons,
and others, will have to be content with paper till things come round
again, if things ever do." Yes;--and, by ill chance, the matter will
attract M. de Voltaire's keen eye in the interim!

Friedrich stayed eight days in Dresden, the loud theme of Gazetteers and
rumors; the admired of two classes, in all Countries: of the many who
admire success, and also of the few who can understand what it is to
deserve success. Among his own Countrymen, this last Winter has kindled
all their admirations to the flaming pitch. Saved by him from imminent
destruction; their enemies swept home as if by one invincible; nay, sent
home in a kind of noble shame, conquered by generosity. These feelings,
though not encouraged to speak, run very high. The Dresdeners in private
society found him delightful; the high ladies especially: "Could you
have thought it; terrific Mars to become radiant Apollo in this manner!"
From considerable Collections of Anecdotes illustrating this fact, in a
way now fallen vapid to us,--I select only the Introduction:--

"Do readers recollect Friedrich's first visit to Dresden [in 1728],
seventeen years ago; and a certain charming young Countess Flemming,
at that time only fourteen; who, like a Hebe as she was, contrived
beautiful surprises for him, and among other things presented him, so
gracefully, on the part of August the Strong, with his first flute?"--No
reader of this History can recollect it; nor indeed, except in a
mythic sense, believe it! A young Countess Flemming (daughter of old
Feldmarschall Flemming) doubtless there might be, who presented him a
flute; but as to HIS FIRST flute--? "That same charming young Countess
Flemming is still here, age now thirty-one; charming, more than ever,
though now under a changed name; having wedded a Von Racknitz (Supreme
Gentleman-Usher, or some such thing) a few years ago, and brought him
children and the usual felicities. How much is changed! August the
Strong, where is he; and his famous Three Hundred and Fifty-four,
Enchantress Orzelska and the others, where are they? Enchantress
Orzelska wedded, quarrelled, and is in a convent: her charming destiny
concluded. Rutowski is not now in the Prussian Army: he got beaten,
Wednesday last, at Kesselsdorf, fighting against that Army. And the
Chevalier de Saxe, he too was beaten there;--clambering now across the
Metal Mountains, ask not of him. And the Marechal de Saxe, he takes
Cities, fights Battles of Fontenoy, 'mumbling a lead bullet all day;'
being dropsical, nearly dead of debaucheries; the most dissolute (or
probably so) of all the Sons of Adam in his day. August the Physically
Strong is dead. August the Spiritually Weak is fled to Prag with his
Bruhl. And we do not come, this time, to get a flute; but to settle
the account of Victories, and give Peace to Nations. Strange, here as
always, to look back,--to look round or forward,--in the mad huge whirl
of that loud-roaring Loom of Time!--One of Countess Racknitz's
Sons happened to leave MANUSCRIPT DIARIES [rather feeble, not too
exact-looking], and gives us, from Mamma's reminiscences"... Not a word
more. [Rodenbeck, _Beitrage,_ i. 440, et seq.]

The Peace, we said, was signed on Christmas-day. Next day, Sunday,
Friedrich attended Sermon in the Kreuzkirche (Protestant High-Church of
Dresden), attended Opera withal; and on Monday morning had vanished
out of Dresden, as all his people had done, or were diligently doing.
Tuesday, he dined briefly at Wusterhausen (a place we once knew well),
with the Prince of Prussia, whose it now is; got into his open carriage
again, with the said Prince and his other Brother Ferdinand; and drove
swiftly homeward. Berlin, drunk with joy, was all out on the streets,
waiting. On the Heath of Britz, four or five miles hitherward of Berlin,
a body of young gentlemen ("Merchants mostly, who had ridden out so
far") saluted him with "VIVAT FRIEDRICH DER GROSSE (Long live Friedrich
THE GREAT)!" thrice over;--as did, in a less articulate manner, Berlin
with one voice, on his arrival there; Burgher Companies lining the
streets; Population vigorously shouting; Pupils of the Koln Gymnasium,
with Clerical and School Functionaries in mass, breaking out into Latin
Song:--

     "VIVAT, VIVAT FRIDERICUS REX;
     VIVAT AUGUSTUS, MAGNUS, FELIX, PATER, PATRI-AE--!"

--and what not. [Preuss, i. 220; who cites _Beschreibung_ ("Description
of his Majesty's Triumphant Entry, on the" &c.) and other Contemporary
Pamphlets. Rodenbeck, i. 124.] On reaching the Portal of the Palace,
his Majesty stept down; and, glancing round the Schloss-Platz and the
crowded windows and simmering multitudes, saluted, taking off his hat;
which produced such a shout,--naturally the loudest of all. And so EXIT
King, into his interior. Tuesday, 2-3 P.M., 28th December, 1745: a King
new-christened in the above manner, so far as people could.

Illuminated Berlin shone like noon, all that night (the beginning of a
GAUDEAMUS which lasted miscellaneously for weeks):--but the King stole
away to see a friend who was dying; that poor Duhan de Jaudun, his early
Schoolmaster, who had suffered much for him, and whom he always much
loved. Duhan died, in a day or two. Poor Jordan, poor Keyserling (the
"Cesarion" of young days): them also he has lost; and often laments, in
this otherwise bright time. (In _OEuvres,_ xvii. 288; xviii. 141; IB.
142--painfully tender Letters to Frau von Camas and others, on these
events).





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