The Prussians advanced in their long double line, trampling the deep snow beneath their feet. All their banners were waving. All their bands of music were pealing forth their most martial airs. Their sixty pieces of artillery, well in front, opened a rapid and deadly fire. The thoroughly-drilled Prussian artillerymen discharged their guns with unerring aim, breaking gaps in the Austrian ranks, and with such wonderful rapidity that the unintermitted roar of the cannons drowned the sound of drums and trumpets.
THE KING APPROACHING SCHNELLENDORF.
CHAPTER XXVII. THE LEUTHEN CAMPAIGN.The Battle of Chotusitz.—Letter to Jordan.—Results of the Battle.—Secret Negotiations.—The Treaty of Breslau.—Entrance into Frankfort.—Treachery of Louis XV.—Results of the Silesian Campaigns.—Panegyrics of Voltaire.—Imperial Character of Maria Theresa.—Her Grief over the Loss of Silesia.—Anecdote of Senora Barbarina.—Duplicity of both Frederick and Voltaire.—Gayety in Berlin.—Straitened Circumstances.—Unamiability of Frederick.He therefore spread his troops abroad in winter quarters, levying contributions upon the unhappy inhabitants of Silesia for their support. The king, ever prompt in his movements, having on Monday, the 23d of January, converted the siege into a blockade, on Wednesday, the 25th, set out for home. Visiting one or two important posts by the way, he reached Berlin the latter part of the week. Here he was received with great acclamations as a conquering hero. In six weeks he had overrun Silesia, and had virtually annexed it to his own realms. Whether Austria would quietly submit to this robbery, and whether Frederick would be able to retain his conquest, were questions yet to be decided.
Strasbourg began to echo with the fame of this foreign count. But the next morning, Thursday, August 25, as Marshal Broglio was walking on the Esplanade, a soldier, who had formerly201 been in the regiment of the Crown Prince at Potsdam, and who knew the Crown Prince perfectly, having seen him hundreds of times, but who had deserted and entered the French service, came to the marshal, with much bowing and embarrassment, and assured him that Count Dufour was no less than the King of Prussia.Origin of the Prussian Monarchy.—The Duchies of Brandenburg and Prussia.—The Elector crowned King Frederick I.—Frederick William.—His Childhood, Youth, and Marriage.—Birth of Fritz.—Death of Frederick I.—Eccentric Character of Frederick William.—His defective Education.—His Energy.—Curious Anecdotes.—Hatred of the French.—Education of Fritz.—The Father’s Plan of Instruction.
“I must observe that hitherto the King of Prussia does, as it were, every thing himself; and that, excepting the finance minister, who preaches frugality, and finds for that doctrine uncommon acceptance, his majesty allows no counseling from any minister; so that the minister for foreign affairs has nothing to do but to expedite the orders he receives, his advice not being asked upon any matter. And so it is with the other ministers.”“But it is time to end this long, dreary letter. I have had some leisure, and have used it to open to you a heart filled with admiration and gratitude toward you. Yes, my adorable sister, if Providence troubled itself about human affairs, you ought to be the happiest person in the universe. Your not being such confirms me in the sentiments expressed in my epistle.“What you write to me of my sister of Baireuth makes me tremble. Next to my mother, she is the one I have most tenderly loved in this world. She is a sister who has my heart and all my confidence, and whose character is of a price beyond all the crowns in the universe. From my tenderest years I was brought up with her. You can conceive how there reigns between us that indissoluble bond of mutual affection and attachment for life which in many cases were impossible. Would to Heaven that I might die before her!”
“He seemed embarrassed, and added, ‘But the universe is eternal.’Voltaire replied from Leipsic:详情
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