2021-04-18 11:49:51

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ENGLISH You may easily imagine that she used every endeavor for the success of her plan, and also to marry me to the English Princess Amelia. The king was informed of this design from its commencement. He was much nettled at these fresh intrigues, which have caused many quarrels between the queen and him. Seckendorf finally took part in the affair, and counseled the king to make an end of all these plans by concluding my marriage with the Princess of Bevern. My Cousin,Knowing all the assaults made by you upon my indisputable rights over my free barony of Herstal, and how the seditious ringleaders there, for several years past, have been countenanced by you in their detestable acts of disobedience against me, I have commanded my privy counselor, Rambonet, to repair to your presence, and in my name to require from you, within two days, a distinct and categorical answer to this question:

The King of Prussia can not sleep. The officers sit up with him every night, and in his slumbers he raves and talks of spirits and apparitions.But the exertion, and the emotion occasioned by the interview with his son, prostrated him again. He was taken back into his palace and to his bed more dead than alive. Reviving a little in the afternoon, he dictated to Frederick all the arrangements he wished to have adopted in reference to his funeral. This curious document is characteristic, in every line, of the strange man. His coffin, which was of massive oak carpentry, had been made for some time, and was in the kings chamber awaiting its occupant. He not unfrequently, with affected or real complacency, fixed his eyes upon it, saying, I shall sleep right well there. In the minute directions to his son as to his burial, he said,

I am too tired to reply to your delightful verses, and shivering too much with cold to taste all the charm of them. But that will come round again. Do not ask poetry from a man who is actually doing the work of a wagoner, and sometimes even of a wagoner stuck in the mud. Would you like to know my way of life? We march from seven in the morning till four in the afternoon. I dine then; afterward I workI receive tiresome visits; with these comes a detail of insipid matters of business. Tis wrong-headed men, punctiliously difficult, who are to be set right; heads too hot which must be restrained, idle fellows that must be urged, impatient men that must be rendered docile, plunderers to be restrained within the bounds of equity, babblers to hear babbling, dumb people to keep in talk; in fine, one has to drink with those that like it, to eat with those who are hungry; one has to become a Jew with Jews, a pagan with pagans. Such are my occupations, which I would willingly make over to another if the phantom they call glory did not rise on me too often. In truth, it is a great folly, but a folly difficult to cast away when once you are smitten by it.

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As the kings infirmities and sufferings increased, the sympathies of his son were more and more excited. He seemed to forget all his fathers cruel treatment, and to remember only his kingly energies. The thought of his death became very painful to him, and at times he recoiled from the oppressive cares he must of necessity assume with the crown.

Then came another strain of verse. Thus the prose and the doggerel were interspersed through the long narrative. Though very truthful in character, it was a school-boy performancea very singular document indeed to be sent to the most brilliant genius of that age, by one who soon proved himself to be the ablest sovereign in Europe.On the 10th of August there was a magnificent review of the Prussian army on the plain of Strehlin, to which all the foreign embassadors were invited. During the night of the 9th, General Schwerin and Prince Leopold, with eight thousand Prussian troops, horse and foot, arrived in the southwestern suburbs of Breslau, and, at six oclock in the morning, demanded simply a passage through the city for their regiments and baggage, on the march to attack a marauding band of the Austrians on the other side of the Oder.Every day it became more clear that Maria Theresa was resolved not to part with one inch of her territory, and that the Austrian court was thoroughly roused in its determination to drive the intrusive Prussians out of Silesia. Though Frederick had no scruples of conscience to prevent him from seizing a portion of the domains of Maria Theresa, his astonishment and indignation were alike aroused by the rumor that England, Poland, and Russia were contemplating the dismemberment of his realms. An army of thirty-six thousand men, under the old Duke Leopold of Dessau,51 was immediately dispatched by Frederick to G?tten, on the frontiers of Hanover, to seize upon that Continental possession of the King of England upon the slightest indication of a hostile movement. George II. was greatly alarmed by this menace.

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CHAPTER V. IMPRISONMENT OF FRITZ AND WILHELMINA.

The wide, overarching sky, writes Carlyle, looks down on49 no more inflexible sovereign man than him, in the red-collared blue coat and white leggins, with the bamboo in his hand; a peaceable, capacious, not ill-given sovereign man, if you will let him have his way; but to bar his way, to tweak the nose of his sovereign royalty, and ignominiously force him into another way, that is an enterprise no man or devil, or body of men or devils, need attempt. The first step in such an attempt will require to be the assassination of Frederick Wilhelm, for you may depend upon it, royal Sophie, so long as he is alive the feat can not be done.The prince was withdrawn, and placed in a room where two sentries watched over him with fixed bayonets. The king malignantly assumed that the prince, being a colonel in the army and attempting to escape, was a deserter, whose merited doom was death. General Mosel urged the king not to see his son again, as his presence was sure to inflame his anger to so alarming a pitch. The father did not again see him for a year and three days.

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Apr-18 11:49:51