History of Friedrich II of Prussia V 12
Thomas Carlyle

Part 3 out of 4

Goltz posted back to Schweidnitz with the news; got thither about
5 P.M.; and was received, naturally, with open arms. Friedrich in
person marched out, next morning, to make FEU-DE-JOIE and
TE-DEUM-ing;--there was Royal Letter to Leopold, which flamed
through all the Newspapers, and can still be read in innumerable
Books; Letter omissible in this place. We remark only how punctual
the King is, to reward in money as well as praise, and not the high
only, but the low that had deserved: to Prince Leopold he presents
2,000 pounds; to each private soldier who had been of the storm,
say half a guinea,--doubling and quadrupling, in the special cases,
to as high as twenty guineas, of our present money. To the old
Gazetteers, and their readers everywhere, this of Glogau is a very
effulgent business; bursting out on them, like sudden Bude-light,
in the uncertain stagnancy and expectancy of mankind. Friedrich
himself writes of it to the Old Dessauer:--

"The more I think of the Glogau business, the more important I find
it. Prince Leopold has achieved the prettiest military stroke (DIE
SCHONSTE ACTION) that has been done in this Century. From my heart
I congratulate you on having such a Son. In boldness of resolution,
in plan, in execution, it is alike admirable; and quite gives a
turn to my affairs." [Date, 13th March, 1741 (Orlich, i. 77).]

And indeed, it is a perfect example of Prussian discipline, and
military quality in all kinds; such as it would be difficult to
match elsewhere. Most potently correct; coming out everywhere with
the completeness and exactitude of mathematics; and has in it such
a fund of martial fire, not only ready to blaze out (which can be
exampled elsewhere), but capable of bottling itself IN, and of
lying silently ready. Which is much rarer; and very essential in
soldiering! Due a little to the OLD Dessauer, may we not say, as
well as to the Young? Friedrich Wilhelm is fallen silent; but his
heavy labors, and military and other drillings to Prussian mankind,
still speak with an audible voice.

About three weeks after this of Glogau, Leopold the Old Dessauer,
over in Brandenburg, does another thing which is important to
Friedrich, and of great rumor in the world. Steps out, namely, with
a force of 36,000 men, horse, foot and artillery, completely
equipped in all points; and takes Camp, at this early season, at a
place called Gottin, not far from Magdeburg, handy at once for
Saxony and for Hanover; and continues there encamped,--"merely for
review purposes." Readers can figure what an astonishment it was to
Kur-Sachsen and British George; and how it struck the wind out of
their Russian Partition-Dream, and awoke them to a sense of the
awful fact!--Capable of being slit in pieces, and themselves
partitioned, at a day's warning, as it were! It was on April 2d,
that Leopold, with the first division of the 36,000, planted his
flag near Gottin. No doubt it was the "detestable Project" that had
brought him out, at so early a season for tent-life, and nobody
could then guess why. He steadily paraded here, all summer;
keeping his 36,000 well in drill, since there was nothing else
needed of him.

The Camp at Gottin flamed greatly abroad through the timorous
imaginations of mankind, that Year; and in the Newspapers are many
details of it. And, besides the important general fact, there is
still one little point worth special mention: namely, that old
Field-marshal Katte (Father of poor Lieutenant Katte whom we knew)
was of it; and perhaps even got his death by it: "Chief Commander
of the Cavalry here," such honor had he; but died at his post, in a
couple of months, "at Rekahn, May 31st;" [ Militair-
Lexikon, ii. 254.] poor old gentleman, perhaps unequal
to the hardships of field-life at so early a season of the year.


At Glogau there was Homaging, on the very morrow after the storm;
on the second day, the superfluous regiments marched off: no want
of vigorous activity to settle matters on their new footing there.
General Kalkstein (Friedrich's old Tutor, whom readers have
forgotten again) is to be Commandant of Glogau; an office of honor,
which can be done by deputy except in cases of real stress.
The place is to be thoroughly new-fortified,--which important point
they commit to Engineer Wallrave, a strong-headed heavy-built Dutch
Officer, long since acquired to the service, on account of his
excellence in that line; who did, now and afterwards, a great deal
of excellent engineering for Friedrich; but for himself (being of
deep stomach withal, and of life too dissolute) made a tragic thing
of it ultimately. As will be seen, if we have leisure.

In seven or eight days, Prince Leopold having wound up his Glogau
affairs, and completed the new preliminaries there, joins the King
at Schweidnitz. In the highest favor, as was natural. Kalkstein is
to take a main hand in the Siege of Neisse; for which operation it
is hoped there will soon be weather, if not favorable yet
supportable. What of the force was superfluous at Glogau had at
once marched off, as we observed; and is now getting re-distributed
where needful. There is much shifting about; strengthening of
posts, giving up of posts: the whole of which readers shall imagine
for themselves,--except only two points that are worth remembering:
FIRST, that Kalkstein with about 12,000 takes post at Grotkau, some
twenty-five miles north of Neisse, ready to move on, and open
trenches, when required: and SECOND, that Holstein-Beck gets posted
at Frankenstein (chief place of that Baumgarten Skirmish), say
thirty-five miles west-by-north of Neisse; and has some 8 or 10,000
Horse and Foot thereabouts, spread up and down,--who will be much
wanted, and not procurable, on an occasion that is coming.

Friedrich has given up the Jablunka Pass; called in the Jablunka
and remoter posts; anxious to concentrate, before the Enemy get
nigh. That is the King's notion; and surely a reasonable one;
the AREA of the Prussian Army, as I guess it from the Maps, being
above 2,000 square miles, beginning at Breslau only, and leaving
out Glogau. Schwerin thinks differently, but without good basis.
Both are agreed, "The Austrian Army cannot take the field till the
forage come," till the new grass spring, which its cavalry find
convenient. That is the fair supposition; but in that both are
mistaken, and Schwerin the more dangerously of the two.--Meanwhile,
the Pandour swarms are observably getting rifer, and of stormier
quality; and they seem to harbor farther to the East than formerly,
and not to come all out of Glatz. Which perhaps are symptomatic
circumstances? The worst effect of these preliminary Pandour clouds
is, Your scout-service cannot live among them; they hinder
reconnoitring, and keep the Enemy veiled from you. Of that sore
mischief Friedrich had, first and last, ample experience at their
hands! This is but the first instalment of Pandours to Friedrich;
and the mere foretaste of what they can do in the veiling way.

Behind the Mountains, in this manner, all is inane darkness to
Friedrich and Schwerin. They know only that Neipperg is
rendezvousing at Olmutz; and judge that he will still spend many
weeks upon it; the real facts being: That Neipperg--"who arrived in
Olmutz on the 10th of March," the very day while Glogau was
homaging--has been, he and those above him and those under him,
driving preparations forward at a furious rate. That Neipperg held
--I think at Steinberg his hithermost post, some twenty miles
hither of Olmutz--a Council of War, "all the Generals and even
Lentulus from Glatz, present at it," day not given; where the
unanimous decision was, "March straightway; save Neisse, since
Glogau is gone!"--and in fine, That on the 26th, Neipperg took the
road accordingly, "in spite of furious snow blowing in his face;"
and is ever since (30,000 strong, says rumor, but perhaps 10,000 of
them mere Pandours) unweariedly climbing the Mountains, laboriously
jingling forward with his heavy guns and ammunition-wagons;
"contending with the steep snowy icy roads;" intent upon saving
Neisse. This is the fact; profoundly unknown to Friedrich and
Schwerin; who will be much surprised, when it becomes patent to
them at the wrong time.

SCHWEIDNITZ, 27th MARCH. This day Friedrich, with considerable
apparatus, pomp and processional cymballing, greatly the reverse of
his ulterior use and wont in such cases, quitted Schweidnitz and
his Algarottis; solemnly opening Campaign in this manner; and drove
off for Ottmachau, having work there for to-morrow.

The Siege of Neisse is now to proceed forthwith; trenches to be
opened April 4th. Friedrich is still of opinion, that his posts lie
too wide apart; that especially Schwerin, who is spread among the
Hills in Jagerndorf Country, ought to come down, and take closer
order for covering the siege. [ OEuvres de Frederic, italic> ii. 70.] Schwerin answers, That if the King will spare him
a reinforcement of eight squadrons and nine battalions (say 1,200
Horse, 9,000 Foot), he will maintain himself where he is, and no
Enemy shall get across the Mountains at all. That is Schwerin's
notion; who surely is something of a judge. Friedrich assents; will
himself conduct the reinforcement to Schwerin, and survey matters,
with his own eyes, up yonder. Friedrich marches from Ottmachau,
accordingly, 29th March;--Kalkstein, Holstein-Beck, and others are
to be rendezvoused before Neisse, in the interim; trenches ready
for opening on the sixth day hence;--and in this manner, climbs
these Mountains, and sees Jagerndorf Country for the first time.

Beautiful blue world of Hills, ridge piled on ridge behind that
Neisse region; fruitful valleys lapped in them, with grim stone
Castles and busy little Towns disclosing themselves as we advance:
that is Jagerndorf Country,--which Uncle George of Anspach,
hundreds of years ago, purchased with his own money; which we have
now come to lay hold of as his Heir! Friedrich, I believe, thinks
little of all this, and does not remember Uncle George at all.
But such are the facts; and the Country, regarded or not, is very
blue and beautiful, with the Spring sun shining on it; or with the
sudden Spring storms gathering wildly on the peaks, as if for
permanent investiture, but vanishing again straightway, leaving
only a powdering of snow.

He met Schwerin at Neustadt, half-way to Jagerndorf; whither they
proceeded next day. "What news have you of the Enemy?" was
Friedrich's first question. Schwerin has no news whatever; only
that the Enemy is far off, hanging in long thin straggle from
Olmutz westward. "I have a spy out," said Schwerin; "but he has not
returned yet,"--nor ever will, he might have added. If diligent
readers will now take to their Map, and attend day by day, an
invincible Predecessor has compelled what next follows into human
intelligibility, and into the Diary Form, for their behoof;--
readers of an idler turn can skip: but this confused hurry-scurry
of marches issues in something which all will have to attend to.

"JAGERNDORF, 2d APRIL, 1741. This is the day when the Old Dessauer
makes appearance with the first brigades of his Camp at Gottin.
Friedrich is satisfied with what he has seen of Jagerndorf matters;
and intends returning towards Neisse, there to commence on the 4th.
He is giving his final orders, and on the point of setting off,
when--Seven Austrian Deserters, 'Dragoons of Lichtenstein,' come
in; and report, That Neipperg's Army is within a few miles!
And scarcely had they done answering and explaining, when sounds
rise of musketry and cannon, from our outposts on that side;
intimating that here is Neipperg's Army itself. Seldom in his life
was Friedrich in an uglier situation. In Jagerndorf, an open Town,
are only some three or four thousand men, 'with three field-pieces,
and as much powder as will charge them forty times.' Happily these
proved only the Pandour outskirts of Neipperg's Army, scouring
about to reconnoitre, and not difficult to beat; the real body of
it is ascertained to be at Freudenthal, fifteen miles to westward,
southwestward; making towards Neisse, it is guessed, by the other
or western road, which is the nearer to Glatz and to the Austrian
force there.

"Had Neipperg known what was in Jagerndorf--! But he does not know.
He marches on, next morning, at his usual slow rate; wide clouds of
Pandours accompanying and preceding him; skirmishing in upon all
places [upon Jagerndorf, for instance, though fifteen miles wide of
their road], to ascertain if Prussians are there. One can judge
whether Friedrich and Schwerin were thankful when the huge alarm
produced nothing! 'The mountain,' as Friedrich says, 'gave birth to
a mouse;'--nay it was a 'mouse' of essential vital use to Friedrich
and Schwerin; a warning, That they must instantly collect
themselves, men and goods; and begone one and all out of these
parts, double-quick towards Neisse. Not now with the hope of
besieging Neisse,--far from that;--but of getting their wide-
scattered posts together thereabouts, and escaping destruction
in detail!

"APRIL 4th, HEAD-QUARTERS NEUSTADT. By violent exertion, with the
sacrifice only of some remote little storehouses, all is
rendezvoused at Jagerndorf, within two days; and this day they
march; King and vanguard reaching Neustadt, some twenty-five miles
forward, some twenty still from Neisse. At Neustadt, the posts that
had stood in that neighborhood are all assembled, and march with
the King to-morrow. Of Neipperg, except by transitory contact with
his Pandour clouds, they have seen nothing: his road is pretty much
parallel to theirs, and some fifteen miles leftward, Glatzward;
goes through Zuckmantel, Ziegenhals, straight upon Neisse.
[Zuckmantel, "Twitch-Cloak," occurs more than once as a Town's name
in those regions: name which, says my Dryasdust without smile
visible, it got from robberies done on travellers, "twitchings of
your cloak," with stand-and-deliver, as you cross those wild
mountain spaces. (Zeiller, Beschreibung des Konigreichs
Boheim, Frankfurt, 1650;--a rather worthless old Book,
like the rest of Zeiller's in that kind.)] Neipperg's men are
wearied with the long climb out of Mahren; and he struggles towards
Neisse as the first object;--holding upon Glatz and Lentulus with
his left. Numerous orders have been speeded from the King's
quarters, at Jagerndorf, and here at Neustadt; order especially to
Holstein-Beck at Frankenstein, and to Kalkstein at Grotkau, How
they are to unite, first with one another; and then to cross Neisse
River, and unite with the King,--to which end there is already a
Bridge laid for them, or about to be laid in good time.

"APRIL 5th, HEAD-QUARTERS STEINAU. Steinau is a little Town twenty
miles east of Neisse, on the road to Kosel [strongish place, on the
Oder, some forty miles farther east]: here Friedrich, with the main
body, take their quarters; rearguard being still at Neustadt.
Temporary Bridge there is, ready or all but ready, at Sorgau
[twelve miles to north of us, on our left]: by this Kalkstein, with
his 10,000, comes punctually across; while other brigades from the
Kosel side are also punctual in getting in; which is a great
comfort: but of Holstein-Beck there is no vestige, nor did there
ever appear any. Holstein, 'whom none of the repeated orders sent
him could reach,' says Friedrich, 'remained comfortably in his
quarters; and looked at the Enemy rushing past him to right and
left, without troubling his head with them.' [ OEuvres de
Frederic, ii. 70.] The too easy-minded Holstein!
Austrian Deserters inform us, That General Neipperg arrived to-day
with his Army in Neisse; and has there been joined by Lentulus with
the Glatz force, chiefly cavalry, a good many thousands. We may be
attacked, then, this very night, if they are diligent? Friedrich
marks out ground and plan in such case, and how and where each is
to rank himself. There came nothing of attack; but the poor little
Village of Steinau, with so many troops in it and baggage-drivers
stumbling about, takes fire; burns to ashes; 'and we had great
difficulty in saving the artillery and powder through the narrow
streets, with the houses all burning on each hand.'" Fancy it,--and
the poor shrieking inhabitants; gone to silence long since with
their shrieks, not the least whisper left of them. "The Prussians
bivouac on the field, each in the place that has been marked out.
Night extremely cold."

In this poor Steinau was a Schloss, which also went up in fire;
disclosing certain mysteries of an almost mythical nature to the
German Public. It was the Schloss of a Grafin von Callenberg, a
dreadful old Dowager of Medea-Messalina type, who "always wore
pistols about her;" pistols, and latterly, with more and more
constancy, a brandy-bottle;--who has been much on the tongues of
men for a generation back. Herr Nussler (readers recollect shifty
Nussler) knew her, in the way of business, at one time; with pity,
if also with horror. Some weeks ago, she was, by the Austrian
Commandant at Neisse, summoned out of this Schloss, as in
correspondence with Prussian Officers: peasants breaking in, tied
her with ropes to the bed where she was; put bed and her into a
farm-cart, and in that scandalous manner delivered her at Neisse to
the Commandant; by which adventure, and its rages and
unspeakabilities, the poor old Callenberg is since dead. And now
the very Schloss is dead; and there is finis to a human dust-
vortex, such as is sometimes noisy for a time. Perhaps Nussler may
again pass that way, if we wait. [Busching, Beitrage, italic> ii.273 et seqq.]

"APRIL 6th, HEAD-QUARTERS FRIEDLAND. To Friedland on the 6th.,--and
do not, as expected, get away next morning. Friedland is ten miles
down the Neisse, which makes a bend of near ninety degrees opposite
Steinau; and runs thence straight north for the Oder, which it
reaches some dozen miles or more above Brieg. Both Steinau and
Friedland are a good distance from the River; Friedland, the nearer
of the two, with Sorgau Bridge direct west of it, is perhaps eight
miles from that important structure. There, being now tolerably
rendezvoused, and in strength for action, Friedrich purposes to
cross Neisse River to-morrow; hoping perhaps to meet Holstein-Beck,
and incorporate him; anxious, at any rate, to get between the
Austrians and Ohlau, where his heavy Artillery, his Ammunition, not
to mention other indispensables, are lying. The peculiarity of
Neipperg at this time is, that the ground he occupies bears no
proportion to the ground he commands. His regular Horse are
supposed to be the best in the world; and of the Pandour kind, who
live, horse and man, mainly upon nothing (which means upon theft),
his supplies are unlimited. He sits like a volcanic reservoir,
therefore, not like a common fire of such and such intensity and
power to burn;--casts the ashes of him, on all sides, to many
miles distance.

"FRIDAY 7th APRIL, FRIEDLAND (still Head-quarters). Unluckily, on
trying, there is no passage to be had at Sorgau. The Officer on
charge there still holds the Bridge, but has been obliged to break
away the farther end of it; 'Lentulus and Dragoons, several
thousands strong' (such is the report), having taken post there.
Friedrich commands that the Bridge be reinstated; field-pieces to
defend it; Prince Leopold to cross, and clear the ways. All Friday,
Friedrich waiting at Friedland, was spent in these details.
Leopold in due force started for Sorgau, himself with Cavalry in
the van; Leopold did storm across, and go charging and fencing,
some space, on the other side; but, seeing that it was in truth
Lentulus, and Dragoons without limit, had to send report
accordingly; and then to wind himself to this side again, on new
order from the King. What is to be done, then? Here is no crossing.
Friedrich decides to go down the River; he himself to Lowen,
perhaps near twenty miles farther down, but where there is a Bridge
and Highway leading over; Prince Leopold, with the heavier
divisions and baggages, to Michelau, some miles nearer, and there
to build his Pontoons and cross. Which was effected, with success.
And so,

"SATURDAY, 8th APRIL, With great punctuality, the King and Leopold
met at Michelau, both well across the Neisse. Here on Pontoons,
Leopold had got across about noon; and precisely as he was
finishing, the King's Column, which had crossed at Lowen, and come
up the left bank again, arrived. The King, much content with
Leopold's behavior, nominates him General of Infantry, a stage
higher in promotion, there and then. Brieg Blockade is, as natural,
given up; the Blockading Body joining with the King, this morning,
while he passed that way. From Holstein-Beck not the least
whisper,--nor to him, if we knew it.

"Neipperg has quitted Neisse; but walks invisible within clouds of
Pandours; nothing but guessing as to Neipperg's motions.
Rightly swift, aud awake to his business, Neipperg might have done,
might still do, a stroke upon us here. But he takes it easy;
marches hardly five miles a day, since he quitted Neisse again.
From Michelau, Friedrich for his part turns southwestward, in quest
of Holstein and other interests; marches towards Grotkau, not
intending much farther that night. Thick snow blowing in their
faces, nothing to be seen ahead, the Prussian column tramps along.
[ OEuvres de Frederic, ii. 156.] In Leipe, a
little Hamlet sidewards of the road, short way from Grotkau, our
Hussar Vanguard had found Austrian Hussars; captured forty, and
from them learned that the Austrian Army is in Grotkau; that they
took Grotkau half an hour before, and are there! A poor Lieutenant
Mitschepfal (whom I think Friedrich used to know in Reinsberg) lay
in Grotkau, 'with some sixty recruits and deserters,' says
Friedrich,--and with several hundreds of camp-laborers (intended
for the trenches, which will not now be opened):--Mitschepfal made
a stout defence; but, after three hours of it, had to give in: and
there is nothing now for us at Grotkau. 'Halt,' therefore! Neipperg
is evidently pushing towards Ohlau, towards Breslau, though in a
leisurely way; there it will behoove us to get the start of him, if
humanly possible: To the right about, therefore, without delay!
The Prussians repass Leipe (much to the wonder of its simple
people); get along, some seven miles farther, on the road for
Ohlau; and quarter, that night, in what handy villages there are;
the King's Corps in two Villages, which he calls 'Pogrel and
Alsen,'"--which are to be found still on the Map as "Pogarell and
Alzenau," on the road from Lowen towards Ohlau.

This is the end of that March into the Mountains, with Neisse Siege
hanging triumphant ahead. These are the King's quarters, this
wintry Spring night, Saturday, 8th April, 1741; and it is to be
guessed there is more of care than of sleep provided for him there.
Seldom, in his life, was Friedrich in a more critical position;
and he well knows it, none better. And could have his remorses upon
it,--were these of the least use in present circumstances. Here are
two Letters which he wrote that night; veiling, we perceive, a very
grim world of thoughts; betokening, however, a mind made up.
Jordan, Prince August Wilhelm Heir-Apparent, and other fine
individuals who shone in the Schweidnitz circle lately, are in
Breslau, safe sheltered against this bad juncture; Maupertuis was
not so lucky as to go with them.


"POGARELL, 8th April, 1741.

"MY DEAREST BROTHER,--The Enemy has just got into Silesia; we are
not more than a mile (QUART DE MILLE) from them. To-morrow must
decide our fortune.

"If I die, do not forget a Brother who has always loved you very
tenderly. I recommend to you my most dear Mother, my Domestics, and
my First Battalion [LIFEGUARD OF FOOT, men picked from his own old
Ruppin Regiment and from the disbanded Giants, star of all the
Battalions]. [See Preuss, i. 144, iv. 309; Nicolai,
Beschreibung von Berlin, iii, 1252.] Eichel and
Schuhmacher [Two of the Three Clerks] are informed of all my
testamentary wishes. Remember me always, you; but console yourself
for my death: the glory of the Prussian Arms, and the honor of the
House have set me in action, and will guide me to my last moment.
You are my sole Heir: I recommend to you, in dying, those whom I
have the most loved during my life: Keyserling, Jordan,
Wartensleben; Hacke, who is a very honest man; Fredersdorf
[Factotum], and Eichel, in whom you may place entire confidence.
I bequeath 8,000 crowns (1,200 pounds, which I have with me, to my
Domestics; but all that I have elsewhere depends on you. To each of
my Brothers and Sisters make a present in my name; a thousand
affectionate regards (AMITIES ET COMPLIMENTS) to my Sister of
Baireuth. You know what I think on their score; and you know better
than I could tell you, the tenderness and all the sentiments of
most inviolable friendship with which I am, dearest Brother,

"Your faithful Brother and Servant till death,

[ OEuvres de Frederic, xxvi. 85; List of

Friedrich's Testamentary arrangements in Note there,--Six in all,
at different times, besides this.]

THE KING TO M. JORDAN (in Breslau).

"POGARELL, 8th April, 1741.

"My DEAR JORDAN,---We are going to fight to-morrow. Thou knowest
the chances of war; the life of Kings not more regarded than that
of private people. I know not what will happen to me.

"If my destiny is finished, remember a friend, who loves thee
always tenderly: if Heaven prolong my days, I will write to thee
after to-morrow, and thou wilt hear of our victory. Adieu, dear
friend; I shall love thee till death.

[Ib. xvii. 98.]

The King, we incidentally discover somewhere, "had no sleep that
night;" none, "nor the next night either,"--such a crisis coming,
still not come.

Chapter X.


"To-morrow," Sunday, did not prove the Day of Fight, after all.
Being a day of wild drifting snow, so that you could not see twenty
paces, there was nothing for it but to sit quiet. The King makes
all his dispositions; sketches out punctually, to the last item,
where each is to station himself, how the Army is to advance in
Four Columns, ready for Neipperg wherever he may be,--towards Ohlau
at any rate, whither it is not doubted Neipperg is bent.
These snowy six-and-thirty hours at Pogarell were probably, since
the Custrin time, the most anxious of Friedrich's life.

Neipperg, for his part, struggles forward a few miles, this Sunday,
April 9th; the Prussians rest under shelter in the wild weather.
Neipperg's head-quarters, this night, are a small Village or
Hamlet, called Mollwitz: there and in the adjacent Hamlets, chiefly
in Laugwitz and Gruningen, his Army lodges itself:--he is now
fairly got between us and Ohlau,--if, in the blowing drift, we knew
it, or he knew it. But, in this confusion of the elements, neither
party knows of the other: Neipperg has appointed that to-morrow,
Monday, l0th, shall be a rest-day:--appointment which could by no
means be kept, as it turned out!

Friedrich had despatched messengers to Ohlau, that the force there
should join him; messengers are all captured. The like message had
already gone to Brieg, some days before, and the Blockading Body, a
good few thousand strong, quitted Brieg, as we saw, and effected
their junction with him. All day, this Sunday, 9th, it still snows
and blows; you cannot see a yard before you. No hope now of
Holstein-Beck. Not the least news from any quarter; Ohlau
uncertain, too likely the wrong way: What is to be done? We are cut
off from our Magazines, have only provision for one other day.
"Had this weather lasted," says an Austrian reporter of these
things, "his Majesty would have passed his time very ill."
[ Feldzuge der Preussen (the complete Title
is, Sammlung ungedruckter Nachrichten so die Geschichte
der Feldzuge der Preussen von 1740 bis 1779 erlautern,
or in English words, Collection of unprinted Narratives
which elucidate the Prussian Campaigns from 1740 to 1779: italic> 5 vols. Dresden, 1782-1785), i. 33. Excellent Narratives,
modest, brief, effective (from Private Diaries and the like; many
of them given also in SEYFARTH); well worth perusal by the studious
military man, and creditably characteristic of the Prussian writers
of them and actors in them.]

Of the Battle of Mollwitz, as indeed of all Friedrich's Battles,
there are ample accounts new and old, of perfect authenticity and
scientific exactitude; so that in regard to military points the due
clearness is, on study, completely attainable. But as to personal
or human details, we are driven back upon a miscellany of sources;
most of which, indeed all of which except Nicolai, when he
sparingly gives us anything, are of questionable nature;
and, without intending to be dishonest, do run out into the
mythical, and require to be used with caution. The latest and
notablest of these, in regard to Mollwitz, is the pamphlet of a
Dr. Fuchs; from which, in spite of its amazing quality, we expect
to glean a serviceable item here and there. [ Jubelschrift
zur Feier (Centenary) der Schlacht bei
Mollwitz, 10 April, 1741, von Dr. Medicinae Fuchs
(Brieg, 10th April, 1841).] It is definable as probably the most
chaotic Pamphlet ever written; and in many places, by dint of
uncorrected printing, bad grammar, bad spelling, bad sense, and in
short, of intrinsic darkness in so vivacious a humor, it has become
abstruse as Sanscrit; and really is a sharp test of what knowledge
you otherwise have of the subject. Might perhaps be used in that
way, by the Examining Military Boards, in Prussia and elsewhere, if
no other use lie in it? Fuchs's own contributions, mere ignorance,
folly and credulity, are not worth interpreting: but he has
printed, and in the same abstruse form, one or two curious Parish
Manuscripts, particularly a "HISTORY" of this War, privately jotted
down by the then Schoolmaster of Mollwitz, a good simple accurate
old fellow-creature; through whose eyes it is here and there worth
while to look. In regard to Fuchs himself, a late Tourist says:--

"This 'Centenary-Celebration Pamphlet' (Celebration itself, so
obtuse was the Country, did not take effect) was by a zealous,
noisy but not wise, old Medical Gentleman of these parts, called
Dr. Fuchs (FOX); who had set his heart on raising, by subscription,
a proper National Monument on the Field of Mollwitz, and so closing
his old career. Subscriptions did not take, in that April, 1841,
nor in the following months or twelve-months: the zealous Doctor,
therefore, indignantly drew his own purse; got a big Obelisk of
Granite hewn ready, with suitable Inscription on it; carted his big
Obelisk from the quarries of Strehlen; assembled the Country round
it, on Mollwitz Field; and passionately discoursed and pleaded,
That at least the Country should bring block-and-tackle, with
proper framework, and set up this Obelisk on the pedestal he had
there built for it. The Country listened cheerfully (for the old
Doctor was a popular man, clever though flighty); but the Country
was again obtuse in the way of active furtherance, and would not
even bring block-and-tackle. The old Doctor had to answer, 'Well,
then!' and go on his way on more serious errands. The cattle have
much undermined, and rubbed down, his poor Pedestal, which is of
rubble-work; his Obelisk still lies mournfully horizontal,
uninjured;--and really ought to be set up, by some parish-rate, or
effort of the community otherwise." [Tourist's Note (Brieg, 1858).]

From the old Mollwitz Schoolmaster we distil the following:--

"MOLLWITZ, SUNDAY, 9th APRIL. Country for two days back: was in new
alarm by the Austrian Garrison of Brieg now left at liberty, who
sallied out upon the Villages about, and plundered black-cattle,
sheep, grain, and whatever they could come at. But this day
(Sunday) in Mollwitz the whole Austrian Army was upon us.
First, there went 300 Hussars through the Village to Gruningen, who
quartered themselves there; and rushed hither and thither into
houses, robbing and plundering. From one they took his best horses,
from another they took linen, clothes, and other furnitures and
victual. General Neuburg [Neipperg] halted here at Mollwitz, with
the whole Army; before the Village, in mind to quarter. And quarter
was settled, so that a BAUER [Plough-Farmer] got four to five
companies to lodge, and a GARTNER [Spade-Farmer] two or three
hundred cavalry. .The houses were full of Officers, the GARTE
[Garths] and the Fields full of horsemen and baggage; and all
round, you saw nothing but fires burning; the ZAUNE [wooden
railings] were instantly torn down for firewood; the hay, straw,
barley and haver, were eaten away, and brought to nothing;
and everything from the barns was carried out. And, as the whole
Army could not lodge itself with us, 1,100 Infantry quartered at
Laugwitz; Barzdorf got 400 Cavalry; and this day, nobody knew what
would come of it." [Extract in FUCHS, p. 6.]

Monday morning, the Prussians are up betimes; King Friedrich, as
above noted, had not, or had hardly at all, slept during those two
nights, such his anxieties. This morning, all is calm, sleeked out
into spotless white; Pogarell and the world are wrapt as in a
winding-sheet, near two feet of snow on the ground. Air hard and
crisp; a hot sun possible about noon season. "By daybreak" we are
all astir, rendezvousing, ranking,--into Four Columns; ready to
advance in that fashion for battle, or for deploying into battle,
wherever the Enemy turn up. The orders were all given overnight,
two nights ago; were all understood, too, and known to be
rhadamanthine; and, down to the lowest pioneer, no man is uncertain
what to do. If we but knew where the Enemy is; on which side of us;
what doing, what intending?

Scouts, General-Adjutants are out on the quest; to no purpose
hitherto. One young General-Adjutant, Saldern, whose name we shall
know again, has ridden northward, has pulled bridle some way north
of Pogarell; hangs, gazing diligently through his spy-glass,
there;--can see nothing but a Plain of silent snow, with sparse
bearding of bushes (nothing like a hedge in these countries), and
here and there a tree, the miserable skeleton of a poplar:--
when happily, owing to an Austrian Dragoon--Be pleased to accept
(in abridged form) the poor old Schoolmaster's account of a
small thing:--

"Austrian Dragoon of the regiment Althan, native of Kriesewitz in
this neighborhood, who was billeted in Christopher Schonwitz's, had
been much in want of a clean shirt, and other interior outfit;
and had, last night, imperatively despatched the man Scholzke, a
farm-servant of the said Christopher's, off to his, the Dragoon's,
Father in Kriesewitz, to procure such shirt or outfit, and to
return early with the same; under penalty of--Scholzke and his
master dare not think under what penalty. Scholzke, floundering
homewards with the outfit from Kriesewitz, flounders at this moment
into Saldern's sphere of vision: 'Whence, whither?' asks Saldern:
'Dost thou know where the Austrians are?' (RECHT GUT: in Mollwitz,
whither I am going!' Saldern takes him to the King,--and that was
the first clear light his Majesty had on the matter." [Fuchs, pp.
6, 7.] That or something equivalent, indisputably was; Saldern and
"a Peasant," the account of it in all the Books.

The King says to this Peasant, "Thou shalt ride with me to-day!"
And Scholzke, Ploschke others call him,--heavy-footed rational
biped knowing the ground there practically, every yard of it,--did,
as appears, attend the King all morning; and do service, that was
recognizable long years afterwards. "For always," say the Books,
"when the King held review here, Ploschke failed not to make
appearance on the field of Pogarell, and get recognition and a gift
from his Majesty."

At break of day the ranking and arranging began. Pogarell clock is
near striking ten, when the last squadron or battalion quits
Pogarell; and the Four Columns, punctiliously correct, are all
under way. Two on each side of Ohlau Highway; steadily advancing,
with pioneers ahead to clear any obstacle there may be.
Few obstacles; here and there a little ditch (where Ploschke's
advice may be good, under the sleek of the snow), no fences, smooth
wide Plain, nothing you would even call a knoll in it for many
miles ahead and around. Mollwitz is some seven miles north from
Pogarell; intermediate lie dusty fractions of Villages more than
one; two miles or more from Mollwitz we come to Pampitz on our
left, the next considerable, if any of them can be
counted considerable.

"All these Dorfs, and indeed most German ones," says my Tourist,
"are made on one type; an agglomerate of dusty farmyards, with
their stalls and barns; all the farmyards huddled together in two
rows; a broad negligent road between, seldom mended, never swept
except by the elements. Generally there is nothing to be seen, on
each hand, but thatched roofs, dead clay walls and rude wooden
gates; sometimes a poor public-house, with probable beer in it;
never any shop, nowhere any patch of swept pavement, or trim
gathering-place for natives of a social gossipy turn: the road lies
sleepy, littery, good only for utilitarian purposes. In the middle
of the Village stands Church and Churchyard, with probably some
gnarled trees around it: Church often larger than you expected;
the Churchyard, always fenced with high stone-and-mortar wall, is
usually the principal military post of the place. Mollwitz, at the
present day, has something of whitewash here and there; one of the
farmer people, or more, wearing a civilized prosperous look.
The belfry offers you a pleasant view: the roofs and steeples of
Brieg, pleasantly visible to eastward; villages dotted about,
Laugwitz, Barzdorf, Hermsdorf, clear to your inquiring: and to
westward, and to southward, tops of Hill-country in the distance.
Westward, twenty miles off, are pleasant Hills; and among them, if
you look well, shadowy Town-spires, which you are assured are
Strehlen, a place also of interest in Friedrich's History.--Your
belfry itself, in Mollwitz, is old, but not unsound; and the big
iron clock grunts heavily at your ear, or perhaps bursts out in a
too deafening manner, while you study the topographies.
Pampitz, too, seems prosperous, in its littery way; the Church is
bigger and newer,"--owing to an accident we shall hear of soon;--
"Country all about seems farmed with some industry, but with
shallow ploughing; liable to drought. It is very sandy in quality;
shorn of umbrage; painfully naked to an English eye." That is the
big champaign, coated with two feet of snow, where a great Action
is now to go forward.

Neipperg, all this while, is much at his ease on this white
resting-day, He is just sitting down to dinner at the Dorfschulze’s
(Village Provost, or miniature Mayor of Mollwitz), a composed man;
when--rockets or projectiles, and successive anxious sputterings
from the steeple-tops of Brieg, are hastily reported: what can it
mean? Means little perhaps;--Neipperg sends out a Hussar party to
ascertain, and composedly sets himself to dine. In a little while
his Hussar party will come galloping back, faster than it went;
faster and fewer;--and there will be news for Neipperg during
dinner! Better here looking out, though it was a rest-day?--

The truth is, the Prussian advance goes on with punctilious
exactitude, by no means rapidly. Colonel Count van Rothenburg,--
the same whom we lately heard of in Paris as a miracle of gambling,
--he now here, in a new capacity, is warily leading the Vanguard of
Dragoons; warily, with the Four Columns well to rear of him:
the Austrian Hussar party came upon Rothenburg, not two miles from
Mollwitz; and suddenly drew bridle. Them Rothenburg tumbles to the
right-about, and chases;--finds, on advancing, the Austrian Army
totally unaware. It is thought, had Rothenburg dashed forward, and
sent word to the rearward to dash forward at their swiftest, the
Austrian Army might have been cut in pieces here, and never have
got together to try battle at all. But Rothenburg had no orders;
nay, had orders Not to get into fighting;--nor had Friedrich
himself, in this his first Battle, learned that feline or leonine
promptitude of spring which he subsequently manifested. Far from
it! Indeed this punctilious deliberation, and slow exactitude as on
the review-ground, is wonderful and noteworthy at the first start
of Friedrich;--the faithful apprentice-hand still rigorous to the
rules of the old shop. Ten years hence, twenty years hence, had
Friedrich found Neipperg in this condition, Neipperg's account had
been soon settled!-- Rothenburg drove back the Hussars, all manner
of successive Hussar parties, and kept steadily ahead of the main
battle, as he had been bidden.

Pampitz Village being now passed, and in rear of them to left, the
Prussian Columns halt for some instants; burst into field-music;
take to deploying themselves into line. There is solemn wheeling,
shooting out to right and left, done with spotless precision:
once in line,--in two lines, "each three men deep," lines many
yards apart,--they will advance on Mollwitz; still solemnly, field-
music guiding, and banners spread. Which will be a work of time.
That the King's frugal field-dinner was shot away, from its camp-
table near Pampitz (as Fuchs has heard), is evidently mythical;
and even impossible, the Austrians having yet no cannon within
miles of him; and being intent on dining comfortably themselves,
not on firing at other people's dinners.

Fancy Neipperg's state of mind, busy beginning dinner in the little
Schulze's, or Town-Provost's house, when the Hussars dashed in at
full gallop, shouting "DER FEIND, The Enemy! All in march there;
vanguard this side of Pampitz; killed forty of us!"--Quick, your
Plan of Battle, then? Whitherward; How; What? answer or perish!
Neipperg was infinitely struck; dropt knife and fork: "Send for
Romer, General of the Horse!" Romer did the indispensable: a swift
man, not apt to lose head. Romer's battle-plan, I should hope, is
already made; or it will fare ill with Neipperg and him. But beat,
ye drummers; gallop, ye aides-de-camp as for life! The first thing
is to get our Force together; and it lies scattered about in three
other Villages besides Mollwitz, miles apart. Neipperg's trumpets
clangor, his aides-de-camp gallop: he has his left wing formed, and
the other parts in a state of rapid genesis, Horse and Foot pouring
in from Laugwitz, Barzdorf, Gruningen, before the Prussians have
quite done deploying themselves, and got well within shot of him.
Romer, by birth a Saxon gentleman, by all accounts a superior
soldier and excellent General of Horse, commands this Austrian left
wing, General Goldlein, [(Anonymous) MARIA THERESA (already cited),
p. 8 n.] a Swiss veteran of good parts, presiding over the Infantry
in that quarter. Neipperg himself, were he once complete, will
command the right wing.

Neipperg is to be in two lines, as the Prussians are, with horse on
each wing, which is orthodox military order. His length of front,
I should guess, must have been something better than two English
miles: a sluggish Brook, called of Laugwitz, from the Village of
that name which lies some way across, is on his right hand;
sluggish, boggy; stagnating towards the Oder in those parts:--
improved farming has, in our time, mostly dried the strip of bog,
and made it into coarse meadow, which is rather a relief amid the
dry sandy element. Neipperg's right is covered by that. His left
rests on the Hamlet of Gruningen, a mile-and-half northeast of
Mollwitz;--meant to have rested on Hermsdorf nearly east, but the
Prussians have already taken that up. The sun coming more and more
round to west of south (for it is now past noon) shines right in
Neipperg's face, and is against him: how the wind is, nobody
mentions,--probably there was no wind. His regular Cavalry, 8,600,
outnumbers twice or more that of the Prussians, not to mention
their quality; and he has fewer Infantry, somewhat in proportion;--
the entire force on each side is scarcely above 20,000, the
Prussians slightly in majority by count. In field-pieces Neipperg
is greatly outnumbered; the Prussians having about threescore, he
only eighteen. [Kausler, Atlas der merkwurdigsten
Schlachten, p. 232.] And now here ARE the Prussians,
close upon our left wing, not yet in contact with the right,--which
in fact is not yet got into existence;--thank Heaven they have not
come before our left got into existence, as our right (if you knew
it) has not yet quite finished doing!--

The Prussians, though so ready for deploying, have had their own
difficulties and delays. Between the boggy Brook of Laugwitz on
their left, and the Village of Hermsdorf, two miles distant, on
which their right wing is to lean, there proves not to be room
enough; [ OEuvres de Frederic, ii. 73.] and
then, owing to mistake of Schulenburg (our old pipe-clay friend,
who commands the right wing of Horse here, and is not up in time),
there is too much room. Not room enough, for all the Infantry, we
say: the last three Battalions of the front line therefore, the
three on the utmost right, wheel round, and stand athwart;
EN POTENCE (as soldiers say), or at right angles to the first line;
hanging to it like a kind of lid in that part,--between Schulenburg
and them,--had Schulenburg come up. Thus are the three battalions
got rid of at least; "they cap the First Prussian line
rectangularly, like a lid," says my authority,--lid which does not
reach to the Second Line by a good way. This accidental arrangement
had material effects on the right wing. Unfortunate Schulenburg did
at last come up:--had he miscalculated the distances, then? Once on
the ground, he will find he does not reach to Hermsdorf after all,
and that there is now too much room! What his degree of fault was I
know not; Friedrich has long been dissatisfied with these Dragoons
of Schulenburg; "good for nothing, I always told you" (at that
Skirmish of Baumgarten): and now here is the General himself fallen
blundering!--In respect of Horse, the Austrians are more than two
to one; to make out our deficiency, the King, imitating something
he had read about Gustavus Adolphus, intercalates the Horse-
Squadrons, on each wing, with two Battalions of Grenadiers, and SO
lengthens them;--"a manoeuvre not likely to be again imitated,"
he admits.

All these movements and arrangements are effected above a mile from
Mollwitz, no enemy yet visible. Once effected, we advance again
with music sounding, sixty pieces of artillery well in front,--
steady, steady!--across the floor of snow which is soon beaten
smooth enough, the stage, this day, of a great adventure. And now
there is the Enemy's left wing, Romer and his Horse; their right
wing wider away, and not yet, by a good space, within cannon-range
of us. It is towards Two of the afternoon; Schulenburg now on his
ground, laments that he will not reach to Hermsdorf;--but it may be
dangerous now to attempt repairing that error? At Two of the clock,
being now fairly within distance, we salute Romer and the Austrian
left, with all our sixty cannon; and the sound of drums and
clarinets is drowned in universal artillery thunder. Incessant, for
they take (by order) to "swift-shooting," which is almost of the
swiftness of musketry in our Prussian practice; and from sixty
cannon, going at that rate, we may fancy some effect. The Austrian
Horse of the left wing do not like it; all the less as the
Austrians, rather short of artillery, have nothing yet to
reply with.

No Cavalry can stand long there, getting shivered in that way;
in such a noise, were there nothing more. "Are we to stand here
like milestones, then, and be all shot without a stroke struck?"
"Steady!" answers Romer. But nothing can keep them steady: "To be
shot like dogs (WIE HUNDE)! For God's sake (URN GOTTES WILLEN),
lead us forward, then, to have a stroke at them!"--in tones ever
more plangent, plaintively indignant; growing ungovernable.
And Romer can get no orders; Neipperg is on the extreme right, many
things still to settle there; and here is the cannon-thunder going,
and soon their very musketry will open. And--and there is
Schulenburg, for one thing, stretching himself out eastwards
(rightwards) to get hold of Hermsdorf; thinking this an opportunity
for the manoeuvre. "Forward!" cries Romer; and his thirty
Squadrons, like bottled whirlwind now at last let loose, dash upon
Schulenburg's poor ten (five of them of Schulenburg's own
regiment,--who are turned sideways too, trotting towards Hermsdorf,
at the wrong moment,--and dash them into wild ruin. That must have
been a charge! That was the beginning of hours of chaos, seemingly
irretrievable, in that Prussian right wing.

For the Prussian Horse fly wildly; and it is in vain to rally.
The King is among them; has come in hot haste, conjuring and
commanding: poor Schulenburg addresses his own regiment, "Oh,
shame, shame! shall it be told, then?" rallies his own regiment,
and some others; charges fiercely in with them again; gets a sabre-
slash across the face,--does not mind the sabre-slash, small
bandaging will do;--gets a bullet through the head (or through the
heart, it is not said which); [ Helden-Geschichte, italic> i. 899.] and falls down dead; his regiment going to the
winds again, and HIS care of it and of other things concluding in
this honorable manner. Nothing can rally that right wing; or the
more you rally, the worse it fares: they are clearly no match for
Romer, these Prussian Horse. They fly along the front of their own
First Line of Infantry, they fly between the two Lines; Romer
chasing,--till the fire of the Infantry (intolerable to our
enemies, and hitting some even of our fugitive friends) repels him.
For the notable point in all this was the conduct of the Infantry;
and how it stood in these wild vortexes of ruin; impregnable,
immovable, as if every man of it were stone; and steadily poured
out deluges of fire,--"five Prussian shots for two Austrian:"--such
is perfect discipline against imperfect; and the iron ramrod
against the wooden.

The intolerable fire repels Romer, when he trenches on the
Infantry: however, he captures nine of the Prussian sixty guns;
has scattered their Horse to the winds; and charges again and
again, hoping to break the Infantry too,--till a bullet kills him,
the gallant Romer; and some other has to charge and try. It was
thought, had Goldlein with his Austrian Infantry advanced to
support Romer at this juncture, the Battle had been gained.
Five times, before Romer fell and after, the Austrians charged
here; tried the Second Line too; tried once to take Prince Leopold
in rear there. But Prince Leopold faced round, gave intolerable
fire; on one face as on the other, he, or the Prussian Infantry
anywhere, is not to be broken. "Prince Friedrich", one of the
Margraves of Schwedt, King's Cousin, whom we did not know before,
fell in these wild rallyings and wrestlings; "by a cannon-ball, at
the King's hand," not said otherwise where. He had come as
Volunteer, few weeks ago, out of Holland, where he was a rising
General: he has met his fate here,--and Margraf Karl, his Brother,
who also gets wounded, will be a mournful man to-night.

The Prussian Horse, this right wing of it, is a ruined body;
boiling in wild disorder, flooding rapidly away to rearward,--
which is the safest direction to retreat upon. They "sweep away the
King's person with them," say some cautious people; others say,
what is the fact, that Schwerin entreated, and as it were
commanded, the King to go; the Battle being, to all appearance,
irretrievable. Go he did, with small escort, and on a long ride,--
to Oppeln, a Prussian post, thirty-five miles rearward, where there
is a Bridge over the Oder and a safe country beyond. So much is
indubitable; and that he despatched an Aide-de-camp to gallop into
Brandenburg, and tell the Old Dessauer, "Bestir yourself! Here all
seems lost!"-- and vanished from the Field, doubtless in very
desperate humor. Upon which the extraneous world has babbled a good
deal, "Cowardice! Wanted courage: Haha!" in its usual foolish way;
not worth answer from him or from us. Friedrich's demeanor, in that
disaster of his right wing, was furious despair rather; and neither
Schulenburg nor Margraf Friedrich, nor any of the captains, killed
or left living, was supposed to have sinned by "cowardice" in a
visible degree!--

Indisputable it is, though there is deep mystery upon it, the King
vanishes from Mollwitz Field at this point for sixteen hours, into
the regions of Myth, "into Fairyland," as would once have been
said; but reappears unharmed in to-morrow's daylight: at which
time, not sooner, readers shall hear what little is to be said of
this obscure and much-disfigured small affair. For the present we
hasten back to Mollwitz,--where the murderous thunder rages
unabated all this while; the very noise of it alarming mankind for
thirty miles round. At Breslau, which is thirty good miles off,
horrible dull grumble was heard from the southern quarter ("still
better, if you put a staff in the ground, and set your ear to it");
and from the steeple-tops, there was dim cloudland of powder-smoke
discernible in the horizon there. "At Liegnitz," which is twice the
distance, "the earth sensibly shook," [ Helden-Geschichte;
and Jordan's Letter, infra.]--at least the air did,
and the nerves of men.

"Had Goldlein but advanced with his Foot, in support of gallant
Romer!" say the Austrian Books. But Goldlein did not advance;
nor is it certain he would have found advantage in so doing:
Goldlein, where he stands, has difficulty enough to hold his own.
For the notable circumstance, miraculous to military men, still is,
How the Prussian Foot (men who had never been in fire, but whom
Friedrich Wilhelm had drilled for twenty years) stand their ground,
in this distraction of the Horse. Not even the two outlying
Grenadier Battalions will give way: those poor intercalated
Grenadiers, when their Horse fled on the right and on the left,
they stand there, like a fixed stone-dam in that wild whirlpool of
ruin. They fix bayonets, "bring their two field-pieces to flank"
(Winterfeld was Captain there), and, from small arms and big,
deliver such a fire as was very unexpected. Nothing to be made of
Winterfeld and them. They invincibly hurl back charge after charge;
and, with dogged steadiness, manoeuvre themselves into the general
Line again; or into contact with the three superfluous Battalions,
arranged EN POTENCE, whom we heard of. Those three, ranked athwart
in this right wing ("like a lid," between First Line and second),
maintained themselves in like impregnable fashion,--Winterfeld
commanding;--and proved unexpectedly, thinks Friedrich, the saving
of the whole. For they also stood their ground immovable, like
rocks; steadily spouting fire-torrents. Five successive charges
storm upon them, fruitless: "Steady, MEINE KINDER; fix bayonets,
handle ramrods! There is the Horse-deluge thundering in upon you;
reserve your fire, till you see the whites of their eyes, and get
the word; then give it them, and again give it them: see whether
any man or any horse can stand it!"

Neipperg, soon after Romer fell, had ordered Goldlein forward:
Goldlein with his Infantry did advance, gallantly enough; but to no
purpose. Goldlein was soon shot dead; and his Infantry had to fall
back again, ineffectual or worse. Iron ramrods against wooden;
five shots to two: what is there but falling back? Neipperg sent
fresh Horse from his right wing, with Berlichingen, a new famed
General of Horse; Neipperg is furiously bent to improve his
advantage, to break those Prussians, who are mere musketeers left
bare, and thinks that will settle the account: but it could in no
wise be done. The Austrian Horse, after their fifth trial, renounce
charging; fairly refuse to charge any more; and withdraw dispirited
out of ball-range, or in search of things not impracticable.
The Hussar part of them did something of plunder to rearward;--and,
besides poor Maupertuis's adventure (of which by and by), and an
attempt on the Prussian baggage and knapsacks, which proved to be
"too well guarded,"--"burnt the Church of Pampitz," as some small
consolation. The Prussians had stript their knapsacks, and left
them in Pampitz: the Austrians, it was noticed, stript theirs in
the Field; built walls of them, and fired behind,the same, in a
kneeling, more or less protected posture,--which did not avail
them much.

In fact, the Austrian Infantry too, all Austrians, hour after hour,
are getting wearier of it: neither Infantry nor Cavalry can stand
being riddled by swift shot in that manner. In spite of their
knapsack walls, various regiments have shrunk out of ball-range;
and several cannot, by any persuasion, be got to come into it
again. Others, who do reluctantly advance,--see what a figure they
make; man after man edging away as he can, so that the regiment
"stands forty to eighty men deep, with lanes through it every two
or three yards;" permeable everywhere to Cavalry, if we had them;
and turning nothing to the Enemy but color-sergeants and bare poles
of a regiment! And Romer is dead, and Goldlein of the Infantry is
dead. And on their right wing, skirted by that marshy Brook of
Laugwitz,--Austrian right wing had been weakened by detachments,
when Berlichingen rode off to succeed Romer,--the Austrians are
suffering: Posadowsky's Horse (among whom is Rothenburg, once
vanguard), strengthened by remnants who have rallied here, are at
last prospering, after reverses. And the Prussian fire of small
arms, at such rate, has lasted now for five hours. The Austrian
Army, becoming instead of a web a mere series of flying tatters,
forming into stripes or lanes in the way we see, appears to have
had about enough.

These symptoms are not hidden from Schwerin. His own ammunition,
too, he knows is running scarce, and fighters here and there are
searching the slain for cartridges:--Schwerin closes his ranks,
trims and tightens himself a little; breaks forth into universal
field-music, and with banners spread, starts in mass wholly,
"Forwards!" Forwards towards these Austrians and the setting sun.

An intelligent Austrian Officer, writing next week from Neisse,
[ Feldzuge der Preussen (above cited),
i. 38.]' confesses he never saw anything more beautiful. "I can
well say, I never in my life saw anything more beautiful.
They marched with the greatest steadiness, arrow-straight, and
their front like a line (SCHNURGLEICH), as if they had been upon
parade. The glitter of their clear arms shone strangely in the
setting sun, and the fire from them went on no otherwise than a
continued peal of thunder." Grand picture indeed; but not to be
enjoyed as a Work of Art, for it is coming upon us! "The spirits of
our Army sank altogether", continues he; "the Foot plainly giving
way, Horse refusing to come forward, all things wavering towards
dissolution:"--so that Neipperg, to avoid worse, gives the word to
go;--and they roll off at double-quick time, through Mollwitz, over
Laugwitz Bridge and Brook, towards Grotkau by what routes they can.
The sun is just sunk; a quarter to eight, says the intelligent
Austrian Officer,--while the Austrian Army, much to its amazement,
tumbles forth in this bad fashion.

They had lost nine of their own cannon, and all of those Prussian
nine which they once had, except one: eight cannon MINUS, in all.
Prisoners of them were few, and none of much mark: two Field-
marshals, Romer and Goldlein, lie among the dead; four more of that
rank are wounded. Four standards too are gone; certain kettle-drums
and the like trophies, not in great number. Lieutenant-General
Browne was of these retreating Austrians; a little fact worth
noting: of his actions this day, or of his thoughts (which latter
surely must have been considerable), no hint anywhere.
The Austrians were not much chased; though they might have been,--
fresh Cavalry (two Ohlau regiments, drawn hither by the sound
[Interesting correct account of their movements and adventures this
day and some previous days, in Nicolai, Anekdoten, italic> ii. 142-148.]) having hung about to rear of them, for some
time past; unable to get into the Fight, or to do any good till
now. Schwerin, they say, though he had two wounds, was for pursuing
vigorously: but Leopold of Anhalt over-persuaded him; urged the
darkness, the uncertainty. Berlichingen, with their own Horse,
still partly covered their rear; and the Prussians, Ohlauers
included, were but weak in that branch of the service.
Pursuit lasted little more than two miles, and was never hot.
The loss of men, on both sides, was not far from equal, and rather
in favor of the Austrian side:--Austrians counted in killed,
wounded and missing, 4,410 men; Prussians 4,613; [Orlich, i. 108;
Kansler, p. 235, correct; Helden-Geschichte,
i. 895, incorrect.]--but the Prussians bivouacked on the ground, or
quartered in these Villages, with victory to crown them, and the
thought that their hard day's work had been well done. Besides
Margraf Friedrich, Volunteer from Holland, there lay among the
slain Colonel Count von Finkenstein (Old Tutor's Son), King's
friend from boyhood, and much loved. He was of the six whom we saw
consulting at the door at Reinsberg, during a certain ague-fit;
and he now rests silent here, while the matter has only come
thus far.

Such was Mollwitz, the first Battle for Silesia; which had to cost
many Battles first and last. Silesia will be gained, we can expect,
by fighting of this kind in an honest cause. But here is something
already gained, which is considerable, and about which there is no
doubt. A new Military Power, it would appear, has come upon the
scene; the Gazetteer-and-Diplomatic world will have to make itself
familiar with a name not much heard of hitherto among the Nations.
"A Nation which can fight," think the Gazetteers; "fight almost as
the very Swedes did; and is led on by its King too,--who may prove,
in his way, a very Charles XII., or small Macedonia's Madman, for
aught one knows?" In which latter branch of their prognostic the
Gazetteers were much out.--

The Fame of this Battle, which is now so sunk out of memory, was
great in Europe; and struck, like a huge war-gong, with long
resonance, through the general ear. M. de Voltaire had run across
to Lille in those Spring days: there is a good Troop of Players in
Lille; a Niece, Madame Denis, wife of some Military Commissariat
Denis, important in those parts, can lodge the divine Emilie and
me;--and one could at last see MAHOMET, after five years of
struggling, get upon the boards, if not yet in Paris by a great
way, yet in Lille, which is something. MAHOMET is getting upon the
boards on those terms; and has proceeded, not amiss, through an Act
or two, when a Note from the King of Prussia was handed to
Voltaire, announcing the victory of Mollwitz. Which delightful Note
Voltaire stopt the performance till he read to the Audience:
"Bravissimo!" answered the Audience. "You will see," said M. de
Voltaire to the friends about him, "this Piece at Mollwitz will
make mine succeed:" which proved to be the fact. [Voltaire,
OEuvres (Vie Privee), ii. 74.] For the French
are Anti-Austrian; and smell great things in the wind. "That man is
mad, your Most Christian Majesty?" "Not quite; or at any rate not
mad only!" think Louis and his Belleisles now.

Dimly poring in those old Books, and squeezing one's way into
face-to-face view of the extinct Time, we begin to notice what a
clangorous rumor was in Mollwitz to the then generation of
mankind;--betokening many things; universal European War, as the
first thing. Which duly came to pass; as did, at a slower rate, the
ulterior thing, not yet so apparent, that indeed a new hour had
struck on the Time Horologe, that a New Epoch had risen. Yes, my
friends. New Charles XII. or not, here truly has a new Man and King
come upon the scene: capable perhaps of doing something?
Slumberous Europe, rotting amid its blind pedantries, its lazy
hypocrisies, conscious and unconscious: this man is capable of
shaking it a little out of its stupid refuges of lies, and
ignominious wrappages and bed-clothes, which will be its grave-
clothes otherwise; and of intimating to it, afar off, that there is
still a Veracity in Things, and a Mendacity in Sham-Things, and
that the difference of the two is infinitely more considerable than
was supposed.

This Mollwitz is a most deliberate, regulated, ponderously
impressive (GRAVITATISCH) Feat of Arms, as the reader sees; done
all by Regulation methods, with orthodox exactitude; in a slow,
weighty, almost pedantic, but highly irrefragable manner. It is the
triumph of Prussian Discipline; of military orthodoxy well put in
practice: the honest outcome of good natural stuff in those
Brandenburgers, and of the supreme virtues of Drill. Neipperg and
his Austrians had much despised Prussian soldiering: "Keep our soup
hot," cried they, on running out this day to rank themselves; "hot
a little, till we drive these fellows to the Devil!" That was their
opinion, about noon this day: but that is an opinion they have
renounced for all remaining days and years.--It is a Victory due
properly to Friedrich Wilhelm and the Old Dessauer, who are far
away from it. Friedrich Wilhelm, though dead, fights here, and the
others only do his bidding on this occasion. His Son, as yet, adds
nothing of his own; though he will ever henceforth begin largely
adding,--right careful withal to lose nothing, for the Friedrich
Wilhelm contribution is invaluable, and the basis of everything;--
but it is curious to see in what contrast this first Battle of
Friedrich's is with his latter and last ones.

Considering the Battle of Mollwitz, and then, in contrast, the
intricate Pragmatic Sanction, and what their consequences were and
their antecedents, it is curious once more! This, then, is what the
Pragmatic Sanction has come to? Twenty years of world-wide
diplomacy, cunningly devised spider-threads overnetting all the
world, have issued here. Your Congresses of Cambray, of Soissons,
your Grumkow-Seckendorf Machiavelisms, all these might as well have
lain in their bed. Real Pragmatic Sanction would have been, A well-
trained Army and your Treasury full. Your Treasury is empty
(nothing in it but those foolish 200,000 English guineas, and the
passionate cry for more): and your Army is not trained as this
Prussian one; cannot keep its ground against this one. Of all those
long-headed Potentates, simple Friedrich Wilhelm, son of Nature,
who had the honesty to do what Nature taught him, has come out,
gainer. You all laughed at him as a fool: do you begin to see now
who was wise, who fool? He has an Army that "advances on you with
glittering musketry, steady as on the parade-ground, and pours out
fire like one continuous thunder-peal;" so that, strange as it
seems, you find there will actually be nothing for you but--taking
to your heels, shall we say?--rolling off with despatch, as second-
best! These things are of singular omen. Here stands one that will
avenge Friedrich Wilhelm,--if Friedrich Wilhelm were not already
sufficiently avenged by the mere verdict of facts, which is
palpably coming out, as Time peels the wiggeries away from them
more and more. Mollwitz and such places are full of veracity;
and no head is so thick as to resist conviction in that kind.


Of the King's Flight, or sudden disappearance into Fairyland,
during this first Battle, the King himself, who alone could have
told us fully, maintained always rigorous silence, and nowhere
drops the least hint. So that the small fact has come down to us
involved in a great bulk of fabulous cobwebs, mostly of an ill-
natured character, set agoing by Voltaire, Valori and others {which
fabulous process, in the good-natured form, still continues
itself); and, except for Nicolai's good industry (in his ANEKDOTEN-
Book), we should have difficulty even in guessing, not to say
understanding, as is now partly possible. The few real particulars
--and those do verify themselves, and hang perfectly together, when
the big globe of fable is burnt off from them--are to the
following effect.

"Battle lost," said Schwerin: "but what is the loss of a Battle to
that of your Majesty's own Person? For Heaven's sake, go; get
across the Oder; be you safe, till this decide itself!" That was
reasonable counsel. If defeated, Schwerin can hope to retreat upon
Ohlau, upon Breslau, and save the Magazines. This side the Oder,
all will be movements, a whirlpool of Hussars; but beyond the Oder,
all is quiet, open. To Ohlau, to Glogau, nay home to Brandenburg
and the Old Dessauer with his Camp at Gottin, the road is free, by
the other side of the Oder.--Schwerin and Prince Leopold urging
him, the King did ride away; at what hour, with what suite, or with
what adventures (not mostly fabulous) is not known:--but it was
towards Lowen, fifteen miles off (where he crossed Neisse River,
the other day); and thence towards Oppeln, on the Oder, eighteen
miles farther; and the pace was swift. Leopold, on reflection,
ordered off a Squadron of Gens-d'Armes to overtake his Majesty, at
Lowen or sooner; which they never did. Passing Pampitz, the King
threw Fredersdorf a word, who was among the baggage there:
"To Oppeln; bring the Purse, the Privy Writings!" Which
Fredersdorf, and the Clerks (and another Herr, who became Nicolai's
Father-in-law in after years) did; and joined the King at Lowen;
but I hope stopped there.

The King's suite was small, names not given; but by the time he got
to Lowen, being joined by cavalry fugitives and the like, it had
got to be seventy persons: too many for the King. He selected what
was his of them; ordered the gates to be shut behind him on all
others, and again rode away. The Leopold Squadron of Gens-d'Armes
did not arrive till after his departure; and having here lost trace
of him, called halt, and billeted for the night. The King speeds
silently to Oppeln on his excellent bay horse, the worse-mounted
gradually giving in. At Oppeln is a Bridge over the Oder, a free
Country beyond: Regiment La Motte lay, and as the King thinks,
still lies in Oppeln;--but in that he is mistaken. Regiment La
Motte is with the baggage at Pampitz, all this day; and a wandering
Hussar Party, some sixty Austrians, have taken possession of
Oppeln. The King, and the few who had not yet broken down, arrive
at the Gate of Oppeln, late, under cloud of night: "Who goes?"
cried the sentry from within. "Prussians! A Prussian Courier!"
answer they;--and are fired upon through the gratings;
and immediately draw back, and vanish unhurt into Night again.
"Had those Hussars only let him in!" said Austria afterwards: but
they had not such luck. It was at this point, according to Valori,
that the King burst forth into audible ejaculations of a lamentable
nature. There is no getting over, then, even to Brandenburg, and in
an insolvent condition. Not open insolvency and bankrupt disgrace;
no, ruin, and an Austrian jail, is the one outlook. "O MON DIEU,
O God, it is too much (C'EN EST TROP)!" with other the like
snatches of lamentation; [Valori, i. 104.] which are not
inconceivable in a young man, sleepless for the third night, in
these circumstances; but which Valori knows nothing of, except by
malicious rumor from the valet class,--who have misinformed Valori
about several other points.

The King riding diligently, with or without ejaculations, back
towards Lowen, comes at an early hour to the Mill of Hilbersdorf,
within a mile-and-half of that place. He alights at the Mill;
sends one of his attendants, almost the only one now left, to
inquire what is in Lowen. The answer, we know, is: "A squadron of
Gens-d'Armes there; furthermore, a Prussian Adjutant come to say,
Victory at Mollwitz!" Upon which the King mounts again;--issues
into daylight, and concludes these mythical adventures. That "in
Lowen, in the shop at the corner of the Market-place, Widow
Panzern, subsequently Wife Something-else, made his Majesty a cup
of coffee, and served a roast fowl along with it," cannot but be
welcome news, if true; and that his Majesty got to Mollwitz again
before dark that same "day," [Fuchs, p. 11.] is liable to
no controversy.

In this way was Friedrich snatched by Morgante into Fairyland,
carried by Diana to the top of Pindus (or even by Proserpine to
Tartarus, through a bad sixteen hours), till the Battle whirlwind
subsided. Friendly imaginative spirits would, in the antique time,
have so construed it: but these moderns were malicious-valetish,
not friendly; and wrapped the matter in mere stupid worlds of
cobweb, which require burning. Friedrich himself was stone-silent
on this matter, all his life after; but is understood never quite
to have pardoned Schwerin for the ill-luck of giving him such
advice. [Nicolai, ii. 180-195 (the one true account); Laveaux,
i. 194; Valori, i. 104; &c., &c. (the myth in various stages).
Most distractedly mythical of all, with the truth clear before it,
is the latest version, just come out, in Was sich die
Schlesier vom alten Fritz erzahlen (Brieg, 1860),
pp. 113-125.]

Friedrich's adventure is not the only one of that kind at Mollwitz;
there is another equally indubitable,--which will remain obscure,
half-mythical to the end of the world. The truth is, that Right
Wing of the Prussian Army was fallen chaotic, ruined; and no man,
not even one who had seen it, can give account of what went on
there. The sage Maupertuis, for example, had climbed some tree or
place of impregnability ("tree" Voltaire calls it, though that is
hardly probable), hoping to see the Battle there. And he did see
it, much too clearly at last! In such a tide of charging and
chasing, on that Right Wing and round all the Field in the Prussian
rear; in such wide bickering and boiling of Horse-currents,--which
fling out, round all the Prussian rear quarters, such a spray of
Austrian Hussars for one element,--Maupertuis, I have no doubt,
wishes much he were at home, doing his sines and tangents. An
Austrian Hussar-party gets sight of him, on his tree or other
standpoint (Voltaire says elsewhere he was mounted on an ass, the
malicious spirit!)--too certain, the Austrian Hussars got sight of
him: his purse, gold watch, all he has of movable is given frankly;
all will not do. There are frills about the man, fine laces, cloth;
a goodish yellow wig on him, for one thing:--their Slavonic
dialect, too fatally intelligible by the pantomime accompanying it,
forces sage Maupertuis from his tree or standpoint; the big red
face flurried into scarlet, I can fancy; or scarlet and ashy-white
mixed; and--Let us draw a veil over it! He is next seen shirtless,
the once very haughty, blustery, and now much-humiliated man;
still conscious of supreme acumen, insight and pure science; and,
though an Austrian prisoner and a monster of rags, struggling to
believe that he is a genius and the Trismegistus of mankind. What a
pickle! The sage Maupertuis, as was natural, keeps passionately
asking, of gods and men, for an Officer with some tincture of
philosophy, or even who could speak French. Such Officer is at last
found; humanely advances him money, a shirt and suit of clothes;
but can in nowise dispense with his going to Vienna as prisoner.
Thither he went accordingly; still in a mythical condition. Of
Voltaire's laughing, there is no end; and he changes the myth from
time to time, on new rumors coming; and there is no truth to be had
from him. [Voltaire, OEuvres (Vie Prive), ii.
33-34; and see his LETTERS for some were after the event.]

This much is certain: at Vienna, Maupertuis, prisoner on parole,
glided about for some time in deep eclipse, till the Newspapers
began babbling of him. He confessed then that he was Maupertuis,
Flattener of the Earth; but for the rest, "told rather a blind
story about himself," says Robinson; spoke as if he had been of the
King's suite, "riding with the King," when that Hussar accident
befell;--rather a blind story, true story being too sad. The Vienna
Sovereignties, in the turn things had taken, were extremely kind;
Grand-Duke Franz handsomely pulled out his own watch, hearing what
road the Maupertuis one had gone; dismissed the Maupertuis, with
that and other gifts, home:--to Brittany (not to Prussia), till
times calmed for engrafting the Sciences. [ Helden-
Geschichte, i. 902; Robinson's Despatch (Vienna,
22d April, 1741, n.s.); Voltaire, ubi supra.]

On Wednesday, Friedrich writes this Note to his Sister; the first
utterance we have from him since those wild roamings about Oppeln
and Hilbersdorf Mill:--

KING TO WILHELMINA (at Baireuth; two days after Mollwitz).

"OHLAU, 12th April, 1741.

"MY DEAREST SISTER,--I have the satisfaction to inform you that we
have yesterday [day before yesterday; but some of us have only had
one sleep!] totally beaten the Austrians. They have lost more than
5,000 men, killed, wounded and prisoners. We have lost Prince
Friedrich, Brother of Margraf Karl; General Schulenburg,
Wartensleben of the Carabineers, and many other Officers.
Our troops did miracles; and the result shows as much. It was one
of the rudest Battles fought within memory of man.

"I am sure you will take part in this happiness; and that you will
not doubt of the tenderness with which I am, my dearest Sister,--
Yours wholly, FEDERIC."
[ OEuvres, xxvii. i. 101.]

And on the same day there comes, from Breslau, Jordan's Answer to
the late anxious little Note from Pogarell; anxieties now gone, and
smoky misery changed into splendor of flame:

JORDAN TO THE KING (finds him at Ohlau).

"BRESLAU, 11th April, 1741.
"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 cannot 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.

"M. de Camas is here, very ill for the last two days; attack of
fever--the Doctor hopes to bring him through,"--which proved beyond
the Doctor: the good Camas died here three days hence (age sixty-
three); an excellent German-Frenchman, of much sense, dignity and
honesty; familiar to Friedrich from infancy onwards, and no doubt
regretted by him as deserved. The Widow Camas, a fine old Lady,
German by birth, will again come in view. Jordan continues:--

"One finds, at the corner of every street, an orator of the Plebs
celebrating the warlike feats of your Majesty's troops. I have
often, in my idleness, assisted at these discourses: not artistic
eloquence, it must be owned, but spurting rude from the heart. ..."

Jordan adds in his next Note: "This morning (14th) I quitted M. de
Camas; who, it is thought, cannot last the day. I have hardly left
him during his illness:" [ OEuvres de Frederic, italic> xvii. 99.]--and so let that scene close.

Neipperg, meanwhile, had fallen back on Neisse; taken up a strong
encampment in that neighborhood; he lies thereabouts all summer;
stretched out, as it were, in a kind of vigilant dog-sleep on the
threshold, keeping watch over Neisse, and tries fighting no more at
this time, or indeed ever after, to speak of. And always, I think,
with disadvantage, when he does try a little. He had been Grand-
Duke Franz's Tutor in War-matters; had got into trouble at Belgrade
once before, and was almost hanged by the Turks. George II. had
occasionally the benefit of him, in coming years. Be not too severe
on the poor man, as the Vienna public was; he had some faculty,
though not enough. "Governor of Luxemburg," before long: there, for
most part, let him peacefully drill, and spend the remainder of his
poor life. Friedrich says, neither Neipperg nor himself, at this
time, knew the least of War; and that it would be hard to settle
which of them made the more blunders in their Silesian tussle.

Friedrich, in about three weeks hence, was fully ready for opening
trenches upon Brieg; did open trenches, accordingly, by moonlight,
in a grand nocturnal manner (as readers shall see anon); and, by
vigorous cannonading,--Marechal de Belleisle having come, by this
time, to enjoy the fine spectacle,--soon got possession of Brieg,
and held it thenceforth. Neisse now alone remained, with Neipperg
vigilantly stretched upon the threshold of it. But the Marechal de
Belleisle, we say, had come; that was the weighty circumstance.
And before Neisse can be thought of, there is a whole Europe,
bickering aloft into conflict; embattling itself from end to end,
in sequel of Mollwitz Battle; and such a preliminary sea of
negotiating, diplomatic finessing, pulse-feeling, projecting and
palavering, with Friedrich for centre all summer, as--as I wish
readers could imagine without my speaking of it farther!
But they cannot.


Chapter XI.


The Battle of Mollwitz went off like a signal-shot among the
Nations; intimating that they were, one and all, to go battling.
Which they did, with a witness; making a terrible thing of it, over
all the world, for above seven years to come. Foolish Nations;
doomed to settle their jarring accounts in that terrible manner!
Nay, the fewest of them had any accounts, except imaginary ones, to
settle there at all; and they went into the adventure GRATIS,
spurred on by spectralities of the sick brain, by phantasms of
hope, phantasms of terror; and had, strictly speaking, no actual
business in it whatever.

Not that Mollwitz kindled Europe; Europe was already kindled for
some two years past;--especially since the late Kaiser died, and
his Pragmatic Sanction was superadded to the other troubles afoot.
But ever since that Image of JENKINS'S EAR had at last blazed up in
the slow English brain, like a fiery constellation or Sign in the
Heavens, symbolic of such injustices and unendurabilities, and had
lighted the Spanish-English War, Europe was slowly but pretty
surely taking fire. France "could not see Spain humbled," she said:
England (in its own dim feeling, and also in the fact of things)
could not do at all without considerably humbling Spain. France,
endlessly interested in that Spanish-English matter, was already
sending out fleets, firing shots,--almost, or altogether, putting
forth her hand in it. "In which case, will not, must not, Austria
help us?" thought England,--and was asking, daily, at Vienna (with
intense earnestness, but without the least result), through
Excellency Robinson there, when the late Kaiser died. Died, poor
gentleman;--and left his big Austrian Heritages lying, as it were,
in the open market-place; elaborately tied by diplomatic packthread
and Pragmatic Sanction; but not otherwise protected against the
assembled cupidities of mankind! Independently of Mollwitz, or of
Silesia altogether, it was next to impossible that Europe could
long avoid blazing out; especially unless the Spanish-English
quarrel got quenched, of which there was no likelihood.

But if not as cause, then as signal, or as signal and cause
together (which it properly was), the Battle of Mollwitz gave the
finishing stroke, and set all in motion. This was "the little stone
broken loose from the mountain;" this, rather than the late
Kaiser's Death, which Friedrich defined in that manner. Or at
least, this was the first LEAP it took; hitting other stones big
and little, which again hit others with their leaping and rolling,
--till the whole mountain-side is in motion under law of gravity,
and you behold one wide stone-torrent thundering towards the
valleys; shivering woods, farms, habitations clean away with it:
fatal to any Image of composite Clay and Brass which it may meet!

There is, accordingly, from this point, a change in Friedrich's
Silesian Adventure; which becomes infinitely more complicated for
him,--and for those that write of him, no less! Friedrich's
business henceforth is not to be done by direct fighting, but
rather by waiting to see how, and on what side, others will fight:
nor can we describe or understand Friedrich's business, except as
in connection with the immense, obsolete, and indeed delirious
Phenomenon called Austrian-Succession War, upon which it is
difficult to say any human word. If History, driven upon Dismal
Swamp with its horrors and perils, can get across unsunk, she will
be lucky!

For, directly on the back of Mollwitz, there ensued, first, an
explosion of Diplomatic activity such as was never seen before;
Excellencies from the four winds taking wing towards Friedrich; and
talking and insinuating, and fencing and fugling, after their sort,
in that Silesian Camp of his, the centre being there. A universal
rookery of Diplomatists;--whose loud cackle and cawing is now as if
gone mad to us; their work wholly fallen putrescent and avoidable,
dead to all creatures. And secondly, in the train of that, there
ensued a universal European War, the French and the English being
chief parties in it; which abounds in battles and feats of arms,
spirited but delirious, and cannot be got stilled for seven or
eight years to come; and in which Friedrich and his War swim only
as an intermittent Episode henceforth. What to do with such a War;
how extricate the Episode, and leave the War lying? The War was at
first a good deal mad; and is now, to men's imagination, fallen
wholly so; who indeed have managed mostly to forget it; only the
Episode (reduced thereby to an UNintelligible state) retaining
still some claims on them.

It is singular into what oblivion the huge Phenomenon called
Austrian-Succession War has fallen; which, within a hundred years
ago or little more, filled all mortal hearts! The English were
principals on one side; did themselves fight in it, with their
customary fire, and their customary guidance ("courageous Wooden
Pole with Cocked Hat," as our friend called it); and paid all the
expenses, which were extremely considerable, and are felt in men's
pockets to this day: but the English have more completely forgotten
it than any other People. "Battle of Dettingen, Battle of Fontenay,
--what, in the Devil's name, were we ever doing there?" the
impatient Englishman asks; and can give no answer, except the
general one: "Fit of insanity; DELIRIUM TREMENS, perhaps FURENS;--
don't think of it!" Of Philippi and Arbela educated Englishmen can
render account; and I am told young gentlemen entering the Army are
pointedly required to say who commanded at Aigos-Potamos and
wrecked the Peloponnesian War: but of Dettingen and Fontenoy, where
is the living Englishman that has the least notion, or seeks for
any? The Austrian-Succession War did veritably rage for eight
years, at a terrific rate, deforming the face of Earth and Heaven;
the English paying the piper always, and founding their National
Debt thereby:--but not even that could prove mnemonic to them;
and they have dropped the Austrian-Succession War, with one accord,
into the general dustbin, and are content it should lie there.
They have not, in their language, the least approach to an
intelligible account of it: How it went on, whitherward, whence;
why it was there at all,--are points dark to the English, and on
which they do not wish to be informed. They have quitted the
matter, as an unintelligible huge English-and-Foreign Delirium
(which in good part it was); Delirium unintelligible to them;
tedious, not to say in parts, as those of the Austrian Subsidies,
hideous and disgusting to them; happily now fallen extinct; and
capable of being skipped, in one's inquiries into the wonders of
this England and this World. Which, in fact, is a practical
conclusion not so unwise as it looks.

"Wars are not memorable," says Sauerteig, "however big they may
have been, whatever rages and miseries they may have occasioned, or
however many hundreds of thousands they may have been the death
of,--except when they have something of World-History in them
withal. If they are found to have been the travail-throes of great
or considerable changes, which continue permanent in the world, men
of some curiosity cannot but inquire into them, keep memory of
them. But if they were travail-throes that had no birth, who of
mortals would remember them? Unless perhaps the feats of prowess,
virtue, valor and endurance, they might accidentally give rise to,
were very great indeed. Much greater than the most were, which came
out in that Austrian-Succession case! Wars otherwise are mere
futile transitory dust-whirlwinds stilled in blood; extensive fits
of human insanity, such as we know are too apt to break out;--such
as it rather beseems a faithful Son of the House of Adam NOT to
speak about again; as in houses where the grandfather was hanged,
the topic of ropes is fitly avoided.

"Never again will that War, with its deliriums, mad outlays of
blood, treasure, and of hope and terror, and far-spread human
destruction, rise into visual life in any imagination of living
man. In vain shall Dryasdust strive: things mad, chaotic and
without ascertainable purpose or result, cannot be fixed into human
memories. Fix them there by never so many Documentary Histories,
elaborate long-eared Pedantries, and cunning threads, the poor
human memory has an alchemy against such ill usage;--it forgets
them again; grows to know them as a mere torpor, a stupidity and
horror, and instinctively flies from Dryasdust and them."

Alive to any considerable degree, in the poor human imagination,
this Editor does not expect or even wish the Austrian-Succession
War to be. Enough for him if it could be understood sufficiently to
render his poor History of Friedrich intelligible. For it enwraps
Friedrich like a world-vortex henceforth; modifies every step of
his existence henceforth; and apart from it, there is no
understanding of his business or him. "So much as sticks to
Friedrich:" that was our original bargain! Assist loyally,
O reader, and we will try to make the indispensable a minimum
for you.


The first point to be noted is, Where did it originate? To which
the answer mainly is, With that lean Gentleman whom we saw with
Papers in the OEil-de-Boeuf on New-year's day last. With
Monseigneur the Marechal de Belleisle principally; with the
ambitious cupidities and baseless vanities of the French Court and
Nation, as represented by Belleisle. George II.'s Spanish War, if
you will examine, had a real necessity in it. Jenkins's Ear was the
ridiculous outside figure this matter had: Jenkins's Ear was one
final item of it; but the poor English People, in their wrath and
bellowings about that small item, were intrinsically meaning:
"Settle the account; let us have that account cleared up and
liquidated; it has lain too long!" And seldom were a People more in
the right, as readers shall yet see.

The English-Spanish War had a basis to stand on in this Universe.
The like had the Prussian-Austrian one; so all men now admit.
If Friedrich had not business there, what man ever had in an
enterprise he ventured on? Friedrich, after such trial and proof as
has seldom been, got his claims on Schlesien allowed by the
Destinies. His claims on Schlesien;--and on infinitely higher
things; which were found to be his and his Nation's, though he had
not been consciously thinking of them in making that adventure.
For, as my poor Friend insists, there ARE Laws valid in Earth and
in Heaven; and the great soul of the world is just. Friedrich had
business in this War; and Maria Theresa VERSUS Friedrich had
likewise cause to appear in court, and do her utmost pleading
against him.

But if we ask, What Belleisle or France and Louis XV. had to do
there? the answer is rigorously, Nothing. Their own windy vanities,
ambitions, sanctioned not by fact and the Almighty Powers, but by
phantasm and the babble of Versailles; transcendent self-conceit,
intrinsically insane; pretensions over their fellow-creatures which
were without basis anywhere in Nature, except in the French brain
alone: it was this that brought Belleisle and France into a German
War. And Belleisle and France having gone into an Anti-Pragmatic
War, the unlucky George and his England were dragged into a
Pragmatic one,--quitting their own business, on the Spanish Main,
and hurrying to Germany,--in terror as at Doomsday, and zeal to
save the Keystone of Nature these. That is the notable point in
regard to this War: That France is to be called the author of it,
who, alone of all the parties, had no business there whatever.
And the wages due to France for such a piece of industry,--the
reader will yet see what wages France and the other parties got, at
the tail of the affair. For that too is apparent in our day.

We have often said, the Spanish-English War was itself likely to
have kindled Europe; and again Friedrich's Silesian War was itself
likely,--France being nearly sure to interfere. But if both these
Wars were necessary ones, and if France interfered in either of
them on the wrong side, the blame will be to France, not to the
necessary Wars. France could, in no way, have interfered in a more
barefacedly unjust and gratuitous manner than she now did; nor, on
any terms, have so palpably made herself the author of the
conflagration of deliriums that ensued for above Seven years
henceforth. Nay for above Twenty years,--the settlement of this
Silesian Pragmatic-Antipragmatic matter (and of Jenkins's Ear,
incidentally, ALONG with this!) not having fairly completed itself
till 1763.


It is very wrong to keep Enchanted Wiggeries sitting in this world,
as if they were things still alive! By a species of "conservatism,"
which gets praised in our Time, but which is only a slothful
cowardice, base indifference to truth, and hatred to trouble in
comparison with lies that sit quiet, men now extensively practise
this method of procedure;--little dreaming how bad and fatal it at
all times is. When the brains are out, things really ought to die;
--no matter what lovely things they were, and still affect to be,
the brains being out, they actually ought in all cases to die, and
with their best speed get buried. Men had noses, at one time;
and smelt the horror of a deceased reality fallen putrid, of a once
dear verity become mendacious, phantasmal; but they have, to an
immense degree, lost that organ since, and are now living
comfortably cheek-by-jowl with lies. Lies of that sad
"conservative" kind,--and indeed of all kinds whatsoever: for that
kind is a general mother; and BREEDS, with a fecundity that is
appalling, did you heed it much!--

It was pity that the "Holy Romish Reich, Teutsch by Nation," had
not got itself buried some ages before. Once it had brains and
life, but now they were out. Under the sway of Barbarossa, under
our old anti-chaotic friend Henry the Fowler, how different had it
been! No field for a Belleisle to come and sow tares in; no rotten
thatch for a French Sun-god to go sailing about in the middle of,
and set fire to! Henry, when the Hungarian Pan-Slavonic Savagery
came upon him, had got ready in the interim; and a mangy dog was
the "tribute" he gave them; followed by the due extent of broken
crowns, since they would not be content with that. That was the due
of Belleisle too,--had there been a Henry to meet him with it, on
his crossing the marches, in Trier Country, in Spring, 1741:
"There, you anarchic Upholstery-Belus, fancying yourself God of the
Sun; there is what Teutschland owes you. Go home with that; and
mind your own business, which I am told is plentiful, if you had
eye for it!"

But the sad truth is, for above Four Centuries now,--and especially
for Three, since little Kaiser Karl IV. "gave away all the moneys
of it," in his pressing occasions, this Holy Romish Reich, Teutsch
by Nation, has been more and ever more becoming an imaginary
quantity; the Kaisership of it not capable of being worn by
anybody, except a Hapsburger who had resources otherwise his own.
The fact is palpable. And Austria, and Anti-Reformation Entity,
"conservative" in that bad sense, of slothfully abhorring trouble
in comparison with lies, had not found the poison more mal-odorous
in this particular than in many others. And had cherished its "Holy
Romish Reich" grown UNholy, phantasmal, like so much else in
Austrian things; and had held firm grip of it, these Three Hundred
years; and found it a furthersome and suitable thing, though
sensible it was more and more becoming an Enchanted Wiggery pure
and simple. Nor have the consequences failed; they never do.
Belleisle, Louis XIV., Henri II., Francois I.: it is long since the
French have known this state of matters; and been in the habit of
breaking in upon it, fomenting internal discontents, getting up
unjust Wars,--with or without advantage to France, but with endless
disadvantage to Germany. Schmalkaldic War; Thirty-Years War;
Louis XIV.'s Wars, which brought Alsace and the other fine
cuttings; late Polish-Election War, and its Lorraine; Austrian-
Succession War: many are the wars kindled on poor Teutschland by
neighbor France; and large is the sum of woes to Europe and to it,
chargeable to that score. Which appears even yet not to be
completed?--Perhaps not, even yet. For it is the penalty of being
loyal to Enchanted Wiggeries; of living cheek-by-jowl with lies of
a peaceable quality, and stuffing your nostrils, and searing your
soul, against the accursed odor they all have!--For I can assure
you the curse of Heaven does dwell in one and all of them; and the
son of Adam cannot too soon get quit of their bad partnership, cost
him what it may.

Belleisle's Journey as Sun-god began in March,--"end of March,
1741," no date of a day to be had for that memorable thing:--and he
went gyrating about, through the German Courts, for almost a year
afterwards; his course rather erratic, but always in a splendor as
of Belus, with those hundred and thirty French Lords and Valets,
and the glory of Most Christian King irradiating him. Very diligent
for the first six months, till September or October next, which we
may call his SEED-TIME; and by no means resting after nine or
twelve months, while the harrowing and hoeing went on. In January,
1742, he had the great satisfaction to see a Bavarian Kaiser got,
instead of an Austrian; and everywhere the fruit of his diligent
husbandry begin to BEARD fairly above ground, into a crop of facts
(like armed men from dragon's teeth), and "the pleasure of the"--
WHOM was it the pleasure of?--"prosper in his hands." Belleisle was
a pretty man; but I doubt it was not "the Lord" he was doing the
pleasure of, on this occasion, but a very Different Personage,
disguised to resemble him in poor Belleisle's eyes!--

Austria was not dangerous to France in late times, and now least of
all; how far from it,--humbled by the loss of Lorraine; and now as
it were bankrupt, itself in danger from all the world. And France,
so far as express Treaties could bind a Nation, was bound to
maintain Austria in its present possessions. The bitter loss of
Lorraine had been sweetened to the late Kaiser by that solitary
drop of consolation;--as his Failure of a Life had been, poor man:
"Failure the most of me has been; but I have got Pragmatic
Sanction, thanks to Heaven, and even France has signed it!" Loss of
Lorraine, loss of Elsass, loss of the Three Bishoprics; since Karl
V.'s times, not to speak of earlier, there has been mere loss on
loss:--and now is the time to consummate it, think Belleisle and
France, in spite of Treaties.

Towards humbling or extinguishing Austria, Belleisle has two
preliminary things to do: FIRST, Break the Pragmatic Sanction, and
get everybody to break it; SECOND, Guide the KAISERWAHL (Election
of a Kaiser), so that it issue, not in Grand-Duke Franz, Maria
Theresa's Husband, as all expect it will, but in another party
friendly to France:--say in Karl Albert of Bavaria, whose Family
have long been good clients of ours, dependent on us for a living
in the Political World. Belleisle, there is little doubt, had from
the first cast his eye on this unlucky Karl Albert for Kaiser;
but is uncertain as to carrying him. Belleisle will take another if
he must; Kur-Sachsen, for example;--any other, and all others, only
not the Grand-Duke: that is a point already fixed with Belleisle,
though he keeps it well in the background, and is careful not to
hint it till the time come.

In regard to Pragmatic Sanction, Belleisle and France found no
difficulty,--or the difficulty only (which we hope must have been
considerable) of eating their own Covenant in behalf of Pragmatic
Sanction; and declaring, which they did without visible blush, That
it was a Covenant including, if not expressly, then tacitly, as all
human covenants do, this clause, "SALVO JURE TERTII (Saving the
rights of Third Parties),"--that is, of Electors of Bavaria, and
others who may object, against it! O soul of honor, O first Nation
of the Universe, was there ever such a subterfuge? Here is a field
of flowering corn, the biggest in the world, begirt with elaborate
ring-fence, many miles of firm oak-paling pitched and buttressed;
--the poor gentleman now dead gave you his Lorraine, and almost his
life, for swearing to keep up said paling. And you do keep it up,--
all except six yards; through which the biggest team on the highway
can drive freely, and the paltriest cadger's ass can step in for
a bellyful!

It appears, the first Nation of the Universe had, at an early
period of their consultations, hit upon this of SALVO JURE TERTII,
as the method of eating their Covenant, before an enlightened
public. [20th January, 1741, in their Note of Ceremony, recognizing
Maria Theresa as Queen of Hungary, Note which had been due so very
long (ADELUNG, ii. 206), there is ominous silence on Pragmatic
Sanction; "beginning of March," there is virtual avowal of SALVO
JURE (ib. 279);--open avowal on Belleisle's advent (ib. 305).]
And they persisted in it, there being no other for them.
An enlightened public grinned sardonically, and was not taken in;
but, as so many others were eating their Covenants, under equally
poor subterfuges, the enlightened public could not grin long on any
individual,--could only gape mutely, with astonishment, on all.
A glorious example of veracity and human nobleness, set by the gods
of this lower world to their gazing populations, who could read in
the Gazettes! What is truth, falsity, human Kingship, human
Swindlership? Are the Ten Commandments only a figure of speech,
then? And it was some beggarly Attorney-Devil that built this
sublunary world and us? Questions might rise; had long been
rising;--but now there was about enough, and the response to them
was falling due; and Belleisle himself, what is very notable, had
been appointed to get ready the response. Belleisle (little as
Belleisle dreamt of it, in these high Enterprises) was ushering in,
by way of response, a RAGNAROK, or Twilight of the Gods, which, as
"French Revolution, or Apotheosis of SANSCULOTTISM," is now well
known;--and that is something to consider of!


The operation once accomplished on its own Pragmatic Covenant,
France found no difficulty with the others. Everybody was disposed
to eat his Covenant, who could see advantage in so doing, after
that admirable example. The difficulty of France and Belleisle
rather was, to keep the hungry parties back: "Don't eat your
Covenant TILL the proper time; patience, we say!" A most sad
Miscellany of Royalties, coming all to the point, "Will you eat
your Covenant, Will you keep it?"--and eating, nearly all; in fact,
wholly all that needed to eat.

On the first Invasion of Silesia, Maria Theresa had indignantly
complained in every Court; and pointing to Pragmatic Sanction, had
demanded that such Law of Nature be complied with, according to
covenant. What Maria Theresa got by this circuit of the Courts,
everybody still knows. Except England, which was willing, and
Holland, which was unwilling, all Courts had answered, more or less
uneasily: "Law of Nature,--humph: yes!"--and, far from doing
anything, not one of them would with certainty promise to do
anything. From England alone and her little King (to whom Pragmatic
Sanction is the Palladium of Human Freedoms and the Keystone of
Nature) could she get the least help. The rest hung back; would not
open heart or pocket; waited till they saw. They do now see;
now that Belleisle has done his feat of Covenant-eating!--

Eleven great Powers, some count Thirteen, some Twelve, [Scholl,
ii. 286; Adelung, LIST, ii. 127.]--but no two agree, and hardly one
agrees with himself;--enough, the Powers of Europe, from Naples and
Madrid to Russia and Sweden, have all signed it, let us say a Dozen
or a Baker's-Dozen of them. And except our little English Paladin
alone, whose interest and indeed salvation seemed to him to lie
that way, and who needed no Pragmatic Covenant to guide him, nobody
whatever distinguished himself by keeping it. Between December,
1740, when Maria Theresa set up her cries in all Courts, on to
April, 1741, England, painfully dragging Holland with her, had
alone of the Baker's-Dozen spoken word of disapproval; much less
done act of hindrance. Two especially (France and Bavaria, not to
mention Spain) had done the reverse, and disowned, and declared
against, Pragmatic Sanction. And after the Battle of Mollwitz, when
the "little stone" took its first leap, and set all thundering,
then came, like the inrush of a fashion, throughout that high
Miscellany or Baker's-Dozen, the general eating of Covenants (which
was again quickened in August, for a reason we shall see):
and before November of that Year, there was no Covenant left to
eat. Of the Baker's-Dozen nobody remained but little George the
Paladin, dragging Holland painfully along with him;--and Pragmatic
Sanction had gone to water, like ice in a June day, and its
beautiful crystalline qualities and prismatic colors were forever
vanished from the world. Will the reader note a point or two, a
personage or two, in this sordid process,--not for the process's
sake, which is very sordid and smells badly, but for his own sake,
to elucidate his own course a little in the intricacies now coming
or come upon him and me?

1. ELECTOR OF BAVARIA.--Karl Albert of Baiern is by some counted
as a Signer of the Pragmatic Sanction, and by others not;
which occasions that discrepancy of sum-total in the Books. And he
did once, in a sense, sign it, he and his Brother of Koln;
but, before the late Kaiser's death, he had openly drawn back from
it again; and counted himself a Non-signer. Signer or not, he, for
his part, lost no moment (but rather the contrary) in openly
protesting against it, and signifying that he never would
acknowledge it. Of this the reader saw something, at the time of
her Hungarian Majesty's Accession. Date and circumstances of it,
which deserve remembering, are more precisely these: October 20th,
1740, Karl Albert's Ambassador, Perusa by name, wrote to Karl from
Vienna, announcing that the Kaiser was just dead. From Munchen, on
the 21st, Karl Albert, anticipating such an event, but not yet
knowing it, orders Perusa, in CASE of the Kaiser's decease, which
was considered probable at Munchen, to demand instant audience of
the proper party (Kanzler Sinzendorf), and there openly lodge his
Protest. Which Perusa did, punctually in all points,--no moment
LOST, but rather the contrary, as we said! Let poor Karl Albert
have what benefit there is in that fact. He was, of all the Anti-
Pragmatic Covenant-Breakers (if he ever fairly were such), the only
one that proceeded honorably, openly and at once, in the matter;
and he was, of them all, by far the most unfortunate.

This is the poor gentleman whom Belleisle had settled on for being
Kaiser. And Kaiser he became; to his frightful sorrow, as it
proved: his crown like a crown of burning iron, or little better!
There is little of him in the Books, nor does one desire much:
a tall aquiline type of man; much the gentleman in aspect; and in
reality, of decorous serious deportment, and the wish to be high
and dignified. He had a kind of right, too, in the Anti-Pragmatic
sense; and was come of Imperial kindred,--Kaiser Ludwig the
Bavarian, and Kaiser Rupert of the Pfalz, called Rupert KLEMM, or
Rupert Smith's-vice, if any reader now remember him, were both of
his ancestors. He might fairly pretend to Kaisership and to
Austrian ownership,--had he otherwise been equal to such
enterprises. But, in all ambitions and attempts, howsoever grounded
otherwise, there is this strict question on the threshold: "Are you
of weight for the adventure; are not you far too light for it?"
Ambitious persons often slur this question; and get squelched to
pieces, by bringing the Twelve Labors of Hercules on Unherculean
backs! Not every one is so lucky as our Friedrich in that
particular,--whose back, though with difficulty, held out.
Which poor Karl Albert's never had much likelihood to do.
Few mortals in any age have offered such an example of the
tragedies which Ambition has in store for her votaries; and what a
matter Hope FULFILLED may be to the unreflecting Son of Adam.

We said, he had a kind of right to Austria, withal. He descended by
the female line from Kaiser Ferdinand I. (as did Kur-Sachsen,
though by a younger Daughter than Karl Albert's Ancestress); and he
appealed to Kaiser Ferdinand's Settlement of the Succession, as a
higher than any subsequent Pragmatic could be. Upon which there
hangs an incident; still famous to German readers. Karl Albert,
getting into Public Argument in this way, naturally instructed
Perusa to demand sight of Kaiser Ferdinand's Last Will, the tenor
of which was known by authentic Copy in Munchen, if not elsewhere
among the kindred. After some delay, Perusa (4th November, 1740),
summoning the other excellencies to witness, got sight of the Will:
to his horror, there stood, in the cardinal passage, instead of
"MUNNLICHE" (male descendants), "EHELICHE" (lawfully begotten
descendants),--fatal to Karl Albert's claim! Nor could he PROVE
that the Parchment had been scraped or altered, though he kept
trying and examining for some days. He withdrew thereupon, by
order, straightway from Vienna; testifying in dumb-show what he
thought. "It is your Copy that is false," cried the Vienna people:
"it has been foisted on you, with this wrong word in it; done by
somebody (your friend, the Excellency Herr von Hartmann, shall we
guess?), wishing to curry favor with ambitious foolish persons!"
Such was the Austrian story. Perhaps in Munchen itself their
Copyist was not known;--for aught I learn, the Copy was made long
since, and the Copyist dead. Hartmann, named as Copyist by the
Vienna people, made emphatic public answer: "Never did I copy it,
or see it!" And there rose great argument, which is not yet quite
ended, as to the question, "Original falsified, or Copy falsified?"
--and the modern vote, I believe, rather clearly is, That the
Austrian Officials had done it--in a case of necessity. [Adelung,
ii. 150-154 (14th-20th November, 1740), gives the public facts,
without commentary. Hormayr ( Anemonen aus dem Tagebuch
eines alten Pilgersmannes, Jena, 1845, i. 162-169,--
our old Hormayr of the AUSTRIAN PLUTARCH, but now Anonymous, and in
Opposition humor) considers the case nearly proved against Austria,
and that Bartenstein and one Bessel, a pillar of the Church, were
concerned in it.] Possi-ble? "But you will lose your soul!" said
the Parson once to a poor old Gentlewoman, English by Nation, who
refused, in dying, to contradict some domestic fiction, to give up
some domestic secret: "But you will lose your soul, Madam!"--
"Tush, what signifies my poor silly soul compared with the honor of
the family?"--

2. KING FRIEDRICH;--King Friedrich may be taken as the Anti-
Pragmatic next in order of time. He too lost not a moment, and
proceeded openly; no quirking to be charged upon him. His account
of himself in this matter always was: "By the Treaty of
Wusterhausen, 1726, unquestionably Prussia undertook to guarantee
Pragmatic Sanction; the late Kaiser undertaking in return, by the
same Treaty, to secure Berg and Julich to Prussia, and to have some
progress made in it within six months from signing.
And unquestionably also, the late Kaiser did thereupon, or even had
already done, precisely the reverse; namely, secured, so far as in
him was possible, Berg and Julich to Kur-Pfalz. Such Treaty, having
in this way done suicide, is dead and become zero: and I am free,
in respect of Pragmatic Sanction, to do whatever shall seem good to
me. My wish was, and would still be, To maintain Pragmatic
Sanction, and even to support it by 100,000 men, and secure the
Election of the Grand-Duke to the Kaisership,--were my claims on
Silesia once liquidated. But these have no concern with Pragmatic
Sanction, for or against: these are good against whoever may fall
Heir to the House of Austria, or to Silesia: and my intention is,
that the strong hand, so long clenched upon my rights, shall open
itself by this favorable opportunity, and give them out." That is
Friedrich's case. And in truth the jury everywhere has to find,--so
soon as instructed, which is a long process in some sections of it
(in England, for example),--That Pragmatic Sanction has not, except
helpless lamentations, "Alas that YOU should be here to insist upon
your rights, and to open fists long closed!"--the least, word to
say to Friedrich.

3. TERMAGANT OF SPAIN.--Perhaps the most distracted of the Anti-
Pragmatic subterfuges was that used by Spain, when the She-dragon
or Termagant saw good to eat her Covenant; which was at a very
early stage. The Termagant's poor Husband is a Bourbon, not a
Hapsburg at all: "But has not he fallen heir to the Spanish
Hapsburgs; become all one as they, an ALTER-EGO of the Spanish
Hapsburgs?" asks she. "And the Austrian Hapsburgs being out, do not
the Spanish Hapsburgs come in? He, I say, this BOURBON-Hapsburg, he
is the real Hapsburg, now that the Austrian Branch is gone;
President he of the Golden Fleece [which a certain "Archduchess,"
Maria Theresa, had been meddling with]; Proprietor, he, of Austrian
Italy, and of all or most things Austrian!"--and produces
Documentary Covenants of Philip II. with his Austrian Cousins;
"to which Philip," said the Termagant, "we Bourbons surely, if you
consider it, are Heir and Alter-Ego!" Is not, this a curious case
of testamentary right; human greed obliterating personal
identity itself?

Belleisle had a great deal of difficulty, keeping the Termagant
back till things were ripe. Her hope practically was, Baby Carlos
being prosperous King of Naples this long while, to get the
Milanese for another Baby she has,--Baby Philip, whom she once
thought of making Pope;--and she is eager beyond measure to have a
stroke at the Milanese. "Wait!" hoarsely whispers Belleisle to her;
and she can scarcely wait. Maria Theresa's Note of Announcement
"New Queen of Hungary, may it please you!" the French, as we saw,
were very long in answering. The Termagant did not answer it at
all; complained on the contrary, "What is this, Madam! Golden
Fleece, you?"--and, early in March, informed mankind that she was


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