Against this unprincipled declaration General Schulenburg remonstrated, declaring it to be unchristian and dishonorable. But the prince seemed to regard such suggestions very contemptuously. “I can perceive,” the general adds, “that if he marries, it will only be that he may have more liberty than now. It is certain that if he had his elbows free he would strike out. He said to me several times, ‘I am young; I want to profit by my youth.’”FREDERICK AND LINSENBARTH.339 “No general has committed more faults than did the king in this campaign. The conduct of Marshal Traun is a model of perfection, which every soldier who loves his business ought to study, and try to imitate if he have the talent. The king has admitted that he himself regarded this campaign as his school in the art of war, and Marshal Traun as his teacher.”
“Must there be war?” he said. “I am your majesty’s friend. Can we not, in mutual concession, find agreement?”“‘I have not the honor to be acquainted with kings,’ said I; ‘but, to judge from what one has read in history of several of them, I should believe, sir, on the whole, that you are right.’
Fully conscious that the respect which would be paid to him as a European sovereign greatly depended upon the number of men he could bring into the field of battle, Frederick William devoted untiring energies to the creation of an army. By the most severe economy, watching with an eagle eye every expenditure, and bringing his cudgel down mercilessly upon the shoulders26 of every loiterer, he succeeded in raising and maintaining an army of one hundred thousand men; seventy-two thousand being field troops, and thirty thousand in garrison.2 He drilled these troops as troops were never drilled before.
On Monday, the 22d of August, the great review commenced near Strehlen. It lasted four days. All the country mansions around were filled with strangers who had come to witness the spectacle.
“Will your majesty sleep, then?” inquired an attendant.
In September, 1777, the King of Bavaria died. The emperor thought it a good opportunity to annex Bavaria to Austria. “Do but look on the map,” says Carlyle, in his peculiar style of thought and expression: “you would say, Austria without Bavaria is like a human figure with its belly belonging to somebody else. Bavaria is the trunk or belly of the Austrian dominions, shutting off all the limbs of them each from the other; making for central part a huge chasm.”
“Think you there is any pleasure in living this dog’s life, in seeing and causing the butchery of people you know nothing of, in losing daily those you do know and love, in seeing perpetually your reputation exposed to the caprices of chance, passing year after year in disquietudes and apprehensions, in risking without end your life and your fortune?“Indeed, how many reasons has one at fifty years of age to despise life! The prospect which remains to me is an old age of infirmity and pain, with disappointments, regrets, ignominies, and outrages to endure. In truth, if you really consider my situation, you ought to blame my intentions less than you do. I have lost all my friends. I am unfortunate in all the ways in which it is possible to be so. I have nothing to hope for. I see my enemies treat me with derision, while their insolence prepares to trample me under foot. Alas!
Frederick.”These sufferings bound the brother and sister very intimately together. “This dear brother,” Wilhelmina writes, “passed all his afternoons with me. We read and wrote together, and occupied ourselves in cultivating our minds. The king now never saw my brother without threatening him with the cane. Fritz repeatedly told me that he would bear any thing from the king except blows; but that, if he ever came to such extremities with him, he would regain his freedom by flight.”
“As God often, by wondrous guidance, strange paths, and thorny steps, will bring men into the kingdom of Christ, so may our divine Redeemer help that this prodigal son be brought into his communion; that his godless heart be beaten until it is softened and changed, and so he be snatched from the claws of Satan. This grant us, the Almighty God and Father, for our Lord Jesus Christ and his passion and death’s sake. Amen.详情
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