2021-04-18 09:51:05

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ENGLISH I forbid any funeral sermon to be preached over me. In the evening a festival will be given in the great room in the garden. The cask of hock which I have in my cellar must be opened. At this repast good wine alone shall be drank.

THE ASSAULT ON GLOGAU.Sire,Yesterday I was in terrible alarms. The sound of the cannon heard, the smoke of powder visible from the steeple-tops here, all led us to suspect that there was a battle going on. Glorious confirmation of it this morning. Nothing but rejoicing among all the Protestant inhabitants, who had begun to be in apprehension from the rumors which the other party took pleasure in spreading. Persons who were in the battle can not enough celebrate the coolness and bravery of your majesty. For myself, I am at the overflowing point. I have run about all day announcing this glorious news to the Berliners who are here. In my life I have never felt a more perfect satisfaction. One finds at the corner of every street an orator of the people celebrating the warlike feats of your majestys troops. I have often, in my idleness, assisted at these discourses; not artistic eloquence, it must be owned, but gushing full from the heart.

What was the sum of money your majesty then offered the Queen of Austria? Lord Hyndford inquired.George was a taciturn, jealous, sullen old man, who quarreled with his son, who was then Prince of Wales. The other powers of Europe were decidedly opposed to this double marriage, as it would, in their view, create too intimate a union between Prussia and England, making them virtually one. Frederick William also vexatiously threw hinderances in the way. But the heart of the loving mother, Sophie Dorothee, was fixed upon these nuptials. For years she left no efforts of diplomacy or intrigue untried to accomplish her end. George I. is represented40 by Horace Walpole as a stolid, stubborn old German, living in a cloud of tobacco-smoke, and stupefying his faculties with beer. He had in some way formed a very unfavorable opinion of Wilhelmina, considering her, very falsely, ungainly in person and fretful in disposition. But at last the tact of Sophie Dorothee so far prevailed over her father, the British king, that he gave his somewhat reluctant but positive consent to the double matrimonial alliance. This was in 1723. Wilhelmina was then fourteen years of age. Fritz, but eleven years old, was too young to think very deeply upon the subject of his marriage. The young English Fred bore at that time the title of the Duke of Gloucester. He soon sent an envoy to Prussia, probably to convey to his intended bride presents and messages of love. The interview took place in the palace of Charlottenburg, a few miles out from Berlin. The vivacious Wilhelmina, in the following terms, describes the interview in her journal:Well, said he, let him quit soldiering then, and give back his regiment to the king. But quiet yourself as to the fears you may have about him if he do; for I know, by certain information, that there will be no blood spilt.

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a. Advance of Prussians.Here the king quite lost his temper. In a loud tone and with angry gesticulation he exclaimed, Do you offer me such rags and rubbish, such paltry scrapings, for all my just claims in Silesia? And so he ran on for quite a length of time, with ever-increasing violence, fanning himself into a flame of indignation.The kings procedure, added the unhappy mother, is not in accordance with that law. He is doing violence to my daughters inclinations, thus rendering her wretched for the remainder of her days. He wishes to give her for a husband a brutal debauchee, a younger brother, who is nothing but an officer in the army of the King of Poland; a landless man, without the means of living according to his rank. I will write to England. But, whatever the answer, I had rather a thousand times see my child in the grave than hopelessly miserable.

After a long pause Lord Hyndford inquired, Would your majesty consent to an armistice?

The dying king strangely decided, at that late hour, to abdicate. All the officials were hurriedly summoned to his chamber. The poor old man, bandaged, with his night-cap on, and a mantle thrown over him, was wheeled into the anteroom where the company was assembled. As he saw P?llnitz he exclaimed, sadly, It is all over. Noticing one in tears, he said to him, kindly, Nay, my friend, this is a debt we all have to pay. The king then solemnly abdicated in favor of his good son Frederick. The deed was made out, signed, and sealed. But scarcely was it executed ere the king fainted, and was carried to his bed. Still the expiring lamp of life flickered in its socket. About eleven oclock the clergyman, M. Cochius, was sent for. The king was in his bed, apparently speechless. He, however, revived a little, and was in great pain, often exclaiming, Pray for me; pray for me; my trust is in the Savior. He called for a mirror, and carefully examined his face for some moments, saying at intervals, Not so worn out as I thought. An ugly face. As good as dead already.31

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Monsieur,Although I have not the satisfaction of knowing you personally, you are not the less known to me through your works. They are treasures of the mind, if I may so express myself; and they reveal to the reader new beauties at every perusal. I think I have recognized in them the character of their ingenious author, who does honor to our age and to human nature. If ever the dispute on the comparative merits of the moderns and the ancients should be revived, the modern great men174 will owe it to you, and to you only, that the scale is turned in their favor. With the excellent quality of poet you join innumerable others more or less related to it.

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Apr-18 09:51:05