History of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. X. (of XXI.) - Frederick The Great—At Reinsberg—1736-1740
by Thomas Carlyle
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Of another Correspondence, beautifully irradiative for the young heart, we must say almost nothing: the Correspondence with Suhm. Suhm the Saxon Minister, whom we have occasionally heard of, is an old Friend of the Crown-Prince's, dear and helpful to him: it is he who is now doing those Translations of Wolf, of which Voltaire lately saw specimens; translate at large, for the young man's behoof. The young man, restless to know the best Philosophy going, had tried reading of Wolf's chief Book; found it too abstruse, in Wolf's German: wherefore Suhm translates; sends it to him in limpid French; fascicle by fascicle, with commentaries; young man doing his best to understand and admire,—gratefully, not too successfully, we can perceive. That is the staple of the famous SUHM CORRESPONDENCE; staple which nobody could now bear to be concerned with.

Suhm is also helpful in finance difficulties, which are pretty frequent; works out subventions, loans under a handsome form, from the Czarina's and other Courts. Which is an operation of the utmost delicacy; perilous, should it be heard of at Potsdam. Wherefore Suhm and the Prince have a covert language for it: and affect still to be speaking of "Publishers" and "new Volumes," when they mean Lenders and Bank-Draughts. All these loans, I will hope, were accurately paid one day, as that from George II. was, in "rouleaus of new gold." We need not doubt the wholesome charm and blessing of so intimate a Correspondence to the Crown-Prince: and indeed his real love of the amiable Suhm, as Suhm's of him, comes beautifully to light in these Letters: but otherwise they are not now to be read without weariness, even dreariness, and have become a biographical reminiscence merely.

Concerning Graf von Manteufel, a third Literary Correspondent, and the only other considerable one, here, from a German Commentator on this matter, is a Clipping that will suffice:—

"Manteufel was Saxon by birth, long a Minister of August the Strong, but quarrelled with August, owing to some frail female it is said, and had withdrawn to Berlin a few years ago. He shines there among the fashionable philosophical classes; underhand, perhaps does a little in the volunteer political line withal; being a very busy pushing gentleman. Tall of stature, 'perfectly handsome at the age of sixty;' [Formey, Souvenirs d'un Citoyen, i. 39-45.] great partisan of Wolf and the Philosophies, awake to the Orthodoxies too. Writes flowing elegant French, in a softly trenchant, somewhat too all-knowing style. High manners traceable in him; but nothing of the noble loyalty, natural politeness and pious lucency of Suhm. One of his Letters to Friedrich has this slightly impertinent passage;—Friedrich, just getting settled in Reinsberg, having transiently mentioned 'the quantity of fair sex' that had come about him there:—

"'BERLIN, 26th AUGUST, 1736 (to the Crown-Prince).... I am well persuaded your Royal Highness will regulate all that to perfection, and so manage that your fair sex will be charmed to find themselves with you at Reinsberg, and you charmed to have them there. But permit me, your Royal Highness, to repeat in this place, what I one day took the liberty of saying here at Berlin: Nothing in the world would better suit the present interests of your Royal Highness and of us all, than some Heir of your Royal Highness's making! Perhaps the tranquil convenience with which your Royal Highness at Reinsberg can now attend to that object, will be of better effect than all those hasty and transitory visits at Berlin were. At least I wish it with the best of my heart. I beg pardon, Monseigneur, for intruding thus into everything which concerns your Royal Highness;'—In truth, I am a rather impudent busybodyish fellow, with superabundant dashing manner, speculation, utterance; and shall get myself ordered out of the Country, by my present correspondent, by and by.—'Being ever,' with the due enthusiasm, 'MANTEUFEL.' [OEuvres de Frederic, xxv. 487;—Friedrich's Answer is, Reinsberg, 23d September (Ib. 489).]

"To which Friedrich's Answer is of a kind to put a gag in the foul mouth of certain extraordinary Pamphleteerings, that were once very copious in the world; and, in particular, to set at rest the Herr Dr. Zimmermann, and his poor puddle of calumnies and credulities, got together in that weak pursuit of physiology under obscene circumstances;—

"Which is the one good result I have gathered from the Manteufel Correspondence," continues our German friend; whom I vote with!—Or if the English reader never saw those Zimmermann or other dog-like Pamphleteerings and surmisings, let this Excerpt be mysterious and superfluous to the thankful English reader.

On the whole, we conceive to ourselves the abundant nature of Friedrich's Correspondence, literary and other; and what kind of event the transit of that Post functionary "from Fehrbellin northwards," with his leathern bags, "twice a week," may have been at Reinsberg, in those years.


Thursday, 25th October, 1736, the Crown-Prince, with Lieutenant Buddenbrock and an attendant or two, drove over into Mecklenburg, to a Village and serene Schloss called Mirow, intending a small act of neighborly civility there; on which perhaps an English reader of our time will consent to accompany him. It is but some ten or twelve miles off, in a northerly direction; Reinsberg being close on the frontier there. A pleasant enough morning's-drive, with the October sun shining on the silent heaths, on the many-colored woods and you.

Mirow is an Apanage for one of the Mecklenburg-Strelitz junior branches: Mecklenburg-Strelitz being itself a junior compared to the Mecklenburg-Schwerin of which, and its infatuated Duke, we have heard so much in times past. Mirow and even Strelitz are not in—a very shining state,—but indeed, we shall see them, as it were, with eyes. And the English reader is to note especially those Mirow people, as perhaps of some small interest to him, if he knew it. The Crown-Prince reports to papa, in a satirical vein, not ungenially, and with much more freedom than is usual in those Reinsberg letters of his:—

"TO HIS PRUSSIAN MAJESTY (from the Crown-Prince).

"REINSBERG, 26th October, 1736.

... "Yesterday I went across to Mirow. To give my Most All-gracious Father an idea of the place, I cannot liken it to anything higher than Gross-Kreutz [term of comparison lost upon us; say GARRAT, at a venture, or the CLACHAN OF ABERFOYLE]: the one house in it, that can be called a house, is not so good as the Parson's there. I made straight for the Schloss; which is pretty much like the Garden-house in Bornim: only there is a rampart round it; and an old Tower, considerably in ruins, serves as a Gateway to the House.

"Coming on the Drawbridge, I perceived an old stocking-knitter disguised as Grenadier, with his cap, cartridge-box and musket laid to a side, that they might not hinder him in his knitting-work. As I advanced, he asked, 'Whence I came, and whitherward I was going?' I answered, that 'I came from the Post-house, and was going over this Bridge:' whereupon the Grenadier, quite in a passion, ran to the Tower; where he opened a door, and called out the Corporal. The Corporal seemed to have hardly been out of bed; and in his great haste, had not taken time to put on his shoes, nor quite button his breeches; with much flurry he asked us, 'Where we were for, and how we came to treat the Sentry in that manner?' Without answering him at all, we went our way towards the Schloss.

"Never in my life should I have taken this for a Schloss, had it not been that there were two glass lamps fixed at the door-posts, and the figures of two Cranes standing in front of them, by way of Guards. We made up to the House; and after knocking almost half an hour to no purpose, there peered out at last an exceedingly old woman, who looked as if she might have nursed the Prince of Mirow's father. The poor woman, at sight of strangers, was so terrified, she slammed the door to in our faces. We knocked again; and seeing there could nothing be made of it, we went round to the stables; where a fellow told us, 'The young Prince with his Consort was gone to Neu-Strelitz, a couple of miles off [ten miles English]; and the Duchess his Mother, who lives here, had given him, to make the better figure, all her people along with him; keeping nobody but the old woman to herself.'

"It was still early; so I thought I could not do better than profit by the opportunity, and have a look at Neu-Strelitz. We took post-horses; and got thither about noon. Neu-Strelitz is properly a Village; with only one street in it, where Chamberlains, Office-Clerks, Domestics all lodge, and where there is an Inn. I cannot better describe it to my Most All-gracious Father than by that street in Gumbinnen where you go up to the Town-hall,—except that no house here is whitewashed. The Schloss is fine, and lies on a lake, with a big garden; pretty much like Reinsberg in situation.

"The first question I asked here was for the Prince of Mirow: but they told me he had just driven off again to a place called Kanow; which is only a couple of miles English from Mirow, where we had been. Buddenbrock, who is acquainted with Neu-Strelitz, got me, from a chamberlain, something to eat; and in the mean while, that Bohme came in, who was Adjutant in my Most All-gracious Father's Regiment [not of Goltz, but King's presumably]: Bohme did not know me till I hinted to him who I was. He told me, 'The Duke of Strelitz was an excellent seamster;'" fit to be Tailor to your Majesty in a manner, had not Fate been cruel, "'and that he made beautiful dressing-gowns (CASSAQUINS) with his needle.' This made me curious to see him: so we had ourselves presented as Foreigners; and it went off so well that nobody recognized me. I cannot better describe the Duke than by saying he is like old Stahl [famed old medical man at Berlin, dead last year, physiognomy not known to actual readers], in a blond Abbe's-periwig. He is extremely silly (BLODE); his Hofrath Altrock tells him, as it were, everything he has to say." About fifty, this poor Duke; shrunk into needlework, for a quiet life, amid such tumults from Schwerin and elsewhere.

"Having taken leave, we drove right off to Kanow; and got thither about six. It is a mere Village; and the Prince's Pleasure-House (LUSTHAUS) here is nothing better than an ordinary Hunting-Lodge, such as any Forest-keeper has. I alighted at the Miller's; and had myself announced" at the LUSTHAUS, "by his maid: upon which the Major-Domo (HAUS-HOFMEISTER) came over to the Mill, and complimented me; with whom I proceeded to the Residenz," that is, back again to Mirow, "where the whole Mirow Family were assembled. The Mother is a Princess of Schwartzburg, and still the cleverest of them all," still under sixty; good old Mother, intent that her poor Son should appear to advantage, when visiting the more opulent Serenities. "His Aunt also," mother's sister, "was there. The Lady Spouse is small; a Niece to the Prince of Hildburghausen, who is in the Kaiser's service: she was in the family-way; but (ABER) seemed otherwise to be a very good Princess.

"The first thing they entertained me with was, the sad misfortune come upon their best Cook; who, with the cart that was bringing the provisions, had overset, and broken his arm; so that the provisions had all gone to nothing. Privately I have had inquiries made; there was not a word of truth in the story. At last we went to table; and, sure enough, it looked as if the Cook and his provisions had come to some mishap; for certainly in the Three Crowns at Potsdam [worst inn, one may guess, in the satirical vein], there is better eating than here.

"At table, there was talk of nothing but of all the German Princes who are not right in their wits (NICHT RECHT KLUG)," as Mirow himself, your Majesty knows, is reputed to be!" There was Weimar, [Wilhelmina's acquaintance; wedded, not without difficulty, to a superfluous Baireuth Sister-in-law by Wilhelmina ( Memoires de Wilhelmina, ii. 185-194): Grandfather of Goethe's Friend;—is nothing like fairly out of his wits; only has a flea (as we may say) dancing occasionally in the ear of him. Perhaps it is so with the rest of these Serenities, here fallen upon evil tongues?] Gotha, Waldeck, Hoym, and the whole lot of them, brought upon the carpet:—and after our good Host had got considerably drunk, we rose,—and he lovingly promised me that 'he and his whole Family would come and visit Reinsberg.' Come he certainly will; but how I shall get rid of him, God knows.

"I most submissively beg pardon of my Most All-gracious Father for this long Letter; and"—we will terminate here. [OEuvres de Frederic, xxvii. part 3d, pp. 104-106.]

Dilapidated Mirow and its inmates, portrayed in this satirical way, except as a view of Serene Highnesses fallen into Sleepy Hollow, excites little notice in the indolent mind; and that little, rather pleasantly contemptuous than really profitable. But one fact ought to kindle momentary interest in English readers: the young foolish Herr, in this dilapidated place, is no other than our "Old Queen Charlotte's" Father that is to be,—a kind of Ancestor of ours, though we little guessed it! English readers will scan him with new curiosity, when he pays that return visit at Reinsberg. Which he does within the fortnight:—

"TO HIS PRUSSIAN MAJESTY (from the Crown-Prince).

"REINSBERG, 6th November, 1736.

... "that my Most All-gracious Father has had the graciousness to send us some Swans. My Wife also has been exceedingly delighted at the fine Present sent her.... General Praetorius," Danish Envoy, with whose Court there is some tiff of quarrel, "came hither yesterday to take leave of us; he seems very unwilling to quit Prussia.

"This morning about three o'clock, my people woke me, with word that there was a Stafette come with Letters,"—from your Majesty or Heaven knows whom! "I spring up in all haste; and opening the Letter,—find it is from the Prince of Mirow; who informs me that 'he will be here to-day at noon.' I have got all things in readiness to receive him, as if he were the Kaiser in person; and I hope there will be material for some amusement to my Most All-gracious Father, by next post."—Next post is half a week hence:—

"TO HIS PRUSSIAN MAJESTY (from the Crown-Prince).

"REINSBERG, 11th Novemher.

... "The Prince of Mirow's visit was so curious, I must give my Most All-gracious Father a particular report of it. In my last, I mentioned how General Praetorius had come to us: he was in the room, when I entered with the Prince of Mirow; at sight of him Praetorius exclaimed, loud enough to be heard by everybody, 'VOILA LE PRINCE CAJUCA!' [Nickname out of some Romance, fallen extinct long since.] Not one of us could help laughing; and I had my own trouble to turn it so that he did not get angry.

"Scarcely was the Prince got in, when they came to tell me, for his worse luck, that Prince Heinrich," the Ill Margraf, "was come;—who accordingly trotted him out, in such a way that we thought we should all have died with laughing. Incessant praises were given him, especially for his fine clothes, his fine air, and his uncommon agility in dancing. And indeed I thought the dancing would never end.

"In the afternoon, to spoil his fine coat,"—a contrivance of the Ill Margraf's, I should think,—"we stept out to shoot at target in the rain: he would not speak of it, but one could observe he was in much anxiety about the coat. In the evening, he got a glass or two in his head, and grew extremely merry; said at last, 'He was sorry that, for divers state-reasons and businesses of moment, he must of necessity return home;'—which, however, he put off till about two in the morning. I think, next day he would not remember very much of it.

"Prince Heinrich is gone to his Regiment again;" Praetorius too is off;—and we end with the proper KOW-TOW. [OEuvres de Frederic, xvii. part 3d, p. 109.]

These Strelitzers, we said, are juniors to infatuated Schwerin; and poor Mirow is again junior to Strelitz: plainly one of the least opulent of Residences. At present, it is Dowager Apanage (WITTWEN-SITZ) to the Widow of the late Strelitz of blessed memory: here, with her one Child, a boy now grown to what manhood we see, has the Serene Dowager lived, these twenty-eight years past; a Schwartzburg by birth, "the cleverest head among them all." Twenty-eight years in dilapidated Mirow: so long has that Tailoring Duke, her eldest STEP-SON (child of a prior wife) been Supreme Head of Mecklenburg-Strelitz; employed with his needle, or we know not how,—collapsed plainly into tailoring at this date. There was but one other Son; this clever Lady's, twenty years junior,—"Prince of Mirow" whom we now see. Karl Ludwig Friedrich is the name of this one; age now twenty-eight gone. He, ever since the third month of him, when the poor Serene Father died ("May, 1703"), has been at Mirow with Mamma; getting what education there was,—not too successfully, as would appear. Eight years ago, "in 1726," Mamma sent him off upon his travels; to Geneva, Italy, France: he looked in upon Vienna, too; got a Lieutenant-Colonelcy in the Kaiser's Service, but did not like it; soon gave it up; and returned home to vegetate, perhaps to seek a wife,—having prospects of succession in Strelitz. For the Serene Half-Brother proves to have no children: were his tailoring once finished in the world, our Prince of Mirow is Duke in Chief. On this basis the wedded last year; the little Wife has already brought him one child, a Daughter; and has (as Friedrich notices) another under way, if it prosper. No lack of Daughters, nor of Sons by and by: eight years hence came the little Charlotte,—subsequently Mother of England: much to her and our astonishment. [Born (at Mirow) 19th May, 1744; married (London), 8th September, 1761; died, 18th November, 1818 (Michaelis, ii. 445, 446; Hubner, t. 195; OErtel, pp. 43, 22).]

The poor man did not live to be Duke of Strelitz; he died, 1752, in little Charlotte's eighth year; Tailor Duke SURVIVING him a few months. Little Charlotte's Brother did then succeed, and lasted till 1794; after whom a second Brother, father of the now Serene Strelitzes;—who also is genealogically notable. For from him there came another still more famous Queen: Louisa of Prussia; beautiful to look upon, as "Aunt Charlotte" was not, in a high degree; and who showed herself a Heroine in Napoleon's time, as Aunt Charlotte never was called to do. Both Aunt and Niece were women of sense, of probity, propriety; fairly beyond the average of Queens. And as to their early poverty, ridiculous to this gold-nugget generation, I rather guess it may have done them benefits which the gold-nugget generation, in its Queens and otherwise, stands far more in want of than it thinks.

But enough of this Prince of Mirow, whom Friedrich has accidentally unearthed for us. Indeed there is no farther history of him, for or against. He evidently was not thought to have invented gunpowder, by the public. And yet who knows but, in his very simplicity, there lay something far beyond the Ill Margraf to whom he was so quizzable? Poor down-pressed brother mortal; somnambulating so pacifically in Sleepy Hollow yonder, and making no complaint!

He continued, though soon with less enthusiasm, and in the end very rarely, a visitor of Friedrich's during this Reinsberg time. Patriotic English readers may as well take the few remaining vestiges, too, before quite dismissing him to Sleepy Hollow. Here they are, swept accurately together, from that Correspondence of Friedrich with Papa:—

"REINSBERG, 18th NOVEMBER, 1736.... report most submissively that the Prince of Mirow has again been here, with his Mother, Wife, Aunt, Hofdames, Cavaliers and entire Household; so that I thought it was the Flight out of Egypt [Exodus of the Jews]. I begin to have a fear of those good people, as they assured me they would have such pleasure in coming often!"

"REINSBERG, 1st FEBRUARY, 1737." Let us give it in the Original too, as a specimen of German spelling:—

"Der Prints von Mihrau ist vohr einigen thagen hier gewessen und haben wier einige Wasser schwermer in der See ihm zu Ehren gesmissen, seine frau ist mit eber thoten Printzesin nieder geKomen.—Der General schulenburg ist heute hier gekommen und wirdt morgen"—That is to say:—

"The Prince of Mirow was here a few days ago; and we let off, in honor of him, a few water-rockets over the Lake: his Wife has been brought to bed of a dead Princess. General Schulenburg [with a small s] came hither to-day; and to-morrow will"...

"REINSBERG, 28th MARCH, 1737.... Prince von Mirow was here yesterday; and tried shooting at the popinjay with us; he cannot see rightly, and shoots always with help of an opera-glass."

"RUPPIN, 20th OCTOBER, 1737. The Prince of Mirow was with us last Friday; and babbled much in his high way; among other things, white-lied to us, that the Kaiserinn gave him a certain porcelain snuff-box he was handling; but on being questioned more tightly, he confessed to me he had bought it in Vienna." [Briefe an Vater, p. 71 (CARET in OEuvres ); pp. 85-114.—See Ib. 6th November, 1737, for faint trace of a visit; and 25th September, 1739, for another still fainter, the last there is.]

And so let him somnambulate yonder, till the two Queens, like winged Psyches, one after the other, manage to emerge from him.

Friedrich's Letters to his Father are described by some Prussian Editors as "very attractive, SEHR ANZIEHENDE BRIEFE;" which, to a Foreign reader, seems a strange account of them. Letters very hard to understand completely; and rather insignificant when understood. They turn on Gifts sent to and sent from, "swans," "hams," with the unspeakable thanks for them; on recruits of so many inches; on the visitors that have been; they assure us that "there is no sickness in the regiment," or tell expressly how much:—wholly small facts; nothing of speculation, and of ceremonial pipe-clay a great deal. We know already under what nightmare conditions Friedrich wrote to his Father! The attitude of the Crown-Prince, sincerely reverent and filial, though obliged to appear ineffably so, and on the whole struggling under such mountains of encumbrance, yet loyally maintaining his equilibrium, does at last acquire, in these Letters, silently a kind of beauty to the best class of readers. But that is nearly their sole merit. By far the most human of them, that on the first visit to Mirow, the reader has now seen; and may thank us much that we show him no more of them. [Friedrich des Grossen Briefe an seinen Vater (Berlin, 1838)]. Reduced in size, by suitable omissions; and properly spelt; but with little other elucidation for a stranger: in OEuvres, xxvii. part 3d, pp, 1-123 (Berlin, 1856).

Chapter IV. — NEWS OF THE DAY.

While these Mirow visits are about their best, and much else at Reinsberg is in comfortable progress, Friedrich's first year there just ending, there come accounts from England of quarrels broken out between the Britannic Majesty and his Prince of Wales. Discrepancies risen now to a height; and getting into the very Newspapers;—the Rising Sun too little under the control of the Setting, in that unquiet Country!

Prince Fred of England did not get to the Rhine Campaign, as we saw: he got some increase of Revenue, a Household of his own; and finally a Wife, as he had requested: a Sachsen-Gotha Princess; who, peerless Wilhelmma being unattainable, was welcome to Prince Fred. She is in the family-way, this summer 1737, a very young lady still; result thought to be due—When? Result being potential Heir to the British Nation, there ought to have been good calculation of the time when! But apparently nobody had well turned his attention that way. Or if Fred and Spouse had, as is presumable, Fred had given no notice to the Paternal Majesty,—"Let Paternal Majesty, always so cross to me, look out for himself in that matter." Certain it is, Fred and Spouse, in the beginning of August, 1737, are out at Hampton Court; potential Heir due before long, and no preparation made for it. August 11th in the evening, out at solitary Hampton Court; the poor young Mother's pains came on; no Chancellor there, no Archbishop to see the birth,—in fact, hardly the least medical help, and of political altogether none. Fred, in his flurry, or by forethought,—instead of dashing off expresses, at a gallop as of Epsom, to summon the necessary persons and appliances, yoked wheeled vehicles and rolled off to the old unprovided Palace of St. James's, London, with his poor Wife in person! Unwarned, unprovided; where nevertheless she was safely delivered that same night,—safely, as if by miracle. The crisis might have taken her on the very highway: never was such an imprudence. Owing, I will believe, to Fred's sudden flurry in the unprovided moment,—unprovided, by reason of prior desuetudes and discouragements to speech, on Papa's side. A shade of malice there might also be. Papa doubts not, it was malice aforethought all of it. "Had the potential Heir of the British Nation gone to wreck, or been born on the highway, from my quarrels with this bad Fred, what a scrape had I been in!" thinks Papa, and is in a towering permanence of wrath ever since; the very Newspapers and coffee-houses and populaces now all getting vocal with it.

Papa, as it turned out, never more saw the face of Fred. Judicious Mamma, Queen Caroline, could not help a visit, one visit to the poor young Mother, so soon as proper: coming out from the visit, Prince Fred obsequiously escorting her to her carriage, found a crowd of people and populace, in front of St. James's; and there knelt down on the street, in his fine silk breeches, careless of the mud, to "beg a Mother's blessing," and show what a son he was, he for his part, in this sad discrepancy that had risen! Mamma threw a silent glance on him, containing volumes of mixed tenor; drove off; and saw no more of Fred, she either. I fear, this kneeling in the mud tells against Prince Fred; but in truth I do not know, nor even much care. [Lord Hervey, Memoirs of George the Second, ii. 362-370, 409.] What a noise in England about nothing at all!—What a noisy Country, your Prussian Majesty! Foolish "rising sun" not restrainable there by the setting or shining one; opposition parties bowling him about among the constellations, like a very mad object!—

But in a month or two, there comes worse news out of England; falling heavy on the heart of Prussian Majesty: news that Queen Caroline herself is dead. ["Sunday evening, 1st December (20th Nov.), 1737." Ib. pp. 510-539.] Died as she had lived, with much constancy of mind, with a graceful modest courage and endurance; sinking quietly under the load of private miseries long quietly kept hidden, but now become too heavy, and for which the appointed rest was now here. Little George blubbered a good deal; fidgeted and flustered a good deal: much put about, poor foolish little soul. The dying Caroline recommended HIM to Walpole; advised his Majesty to marry again. "Non, j'aurai des maitresses (No, I'll have mistresses)!" sobbed his Majesty passionately. "Ah, mon Dieu, cela n'empeche pas" (that does not an experience of the case). There is something stoically tragic in the history of Caroline with her flighty vaporing little King: seldom had foolish husband so wise a wife. "Dead!" thought Friedrich Wilhelm, looking back through the whirlwinds of life, into sunny young scenes far enough away: "Dead!"—Walpole continued to manage the little King; but not for long; England itself rising in objection. Jenkins's Ear, I understand, is lying in cotton; and there are mad inflammable strata in that Nation, capable of exploding at a great rate.

From the Eastern regions our Newspapers are very full of events: War with the Turk going on there; Russia and Austria both doing their best against the Turk. The Russians had hardly finished their Polish-Election fighting, when they decided to have a stroke at the Turk,—Turk always an especial eye-sorrow to them, since that "Treaty of the Pruth," and Czar Peter's sad rebuff there:—Munnich marched direct out of Poland through the Ukraine, with his eye on the Crimea and furious business in that quarter. This is his second Campaign there, this of 1737; and furious business has not failed. Last year he stormed the Lines of Perecop, tore open the Crimea; took Azoph, he or Lacy under him; took many things: this year he had laid his plans for Oczakow;—takes Oczakow,—fiery event, blazing in all the Newspapers, at Reinsberg and elsewhere. Concerning which will the reader accept this condensed testimony by an eye-witness?

"OCZAKOW, 13th JULY, 1737. Day before yesterday, Feldmarschall Munnich got to Oczakow, as he had planned,"—strong Turkish Town in the nook between the Black Sea and the estuary of the Dnieper;—"with intention to besiege it. Siege-train, stores of every sort, which he had set afloat upon the Dnieper in time enough, were to have been ready for him at Oczakow. But the flotilla had been detained by shallows, by waterfalls; not a boat was come, nor could anybody say when they were coming. Meanwhile nothing is to be had here; the very face of the earth the Turks have burnt: not a blade of grass for cavalry within eight miles, nor a stick of wood for engineers; not a hole for covert, and the ground so hard you cannot raise redoubts on it: Munnich perceives he must attempt, nevertheless.

"On his right, by the sea-shore, Munnich finds some remains of gardens, palisades; scrapes together some vestige of shelter there (five thousand, or even ten thousand pioneers working desperately all that first night, 11th July, with only half success); and on the morrow commences firing with what artillery he has. Much outfired by the Turks inside;—his enterprise as good as desperate, unless the Dnieper flotilla come soon. July 12th, all day the firing continues, and all night; Turks extremely furious: about an hour before daybreak, we notice burning in the interior, 'Some wooden house kindled by us, town got on fire yonder,'—and, praise to Heaven, they do not seem to succeed in quenching it again. Munnich turns out, in various divisions; intent on trying something, had he the least engineer furniture;—hopes desperately there may be promise for him in that internal burning still visible.

"In the centre of Munnich's line is one General Keith, a deliberate stalwart Scotch gentleman, whom we shall know better; Munnich himself is to the right: Could not one try it by scalade; keep the internal burning free to spread, at any rate? 'Advance within musket-shot, General Keith!' orders Munnich's Aide-de-Camp cantering up. 'I have been this good while within it,' answers Keith, pointing to his dead men. Aide-de-Camp canters up a second time: 'Advance within half musket-shot, General Keith, and quit any covert you have!' Keith does so; sends, with his respects to Feldmarschall Munnich, his remonstrance against such a waste of human life. Aide-de-Camp canters up a third time: 'Feldmarschall Munnich is for trying a scalade; hopes General Keith will do his best to co-operate!' 'Forward, then!' answers Keith; advances close to the glacis; finds a wet ditch twelve feet broad, and has not a stick of engineer furniture. Keith waits there two hours; his men, under fire all the while, trying this and that to get across; Munnich's scalade going off ineffectual in like manner:—till at length Keith's men, and all men, tire of such a business, and roll back in great confusion out of shot-range. Munnich gives himself up for lost. And indeed, says Mannstein, had the Turks sallied out in pursuit at that moment, they might have chased us back to Russia. But the Turks did not sally. And the internal conflagration is not quenched, far from it;—and about nine A.M. their Powder-Magazine, conflagration reaching it, roared aloft into the air, and killed seven thousand of them," [Mannstein, pp. 151-156.]—

So that Oczakow was taken, sure enough; terms, life only: and every remaining Turk packs off from it, some "twenty thousand inhabitants young and old" for one sad item.—A very blazing semi-absurd event, to be read of in Prussian military circles,—where General Keith will be better known one day.

Russian War with the Turk: that means withal, by old Treaties, aid of thirty thousand men from the Kaiser to Russia. Kaiser, so ruined lately, how can he send thirty thousand, and keep them recruited, in such distant expedition? Kaiser, much meditating, is advised it will be better to go frankly into the Turk on his own score, and try for slices of profit from him in this game. Kaiser declares war against the Turk; and what is still more interesting to Friedrich Wilhelm and the Berlin Circles, Seckendorf is named General of it. Feldzeugmeister now Feldmarschall Seckendorf, envy may say what it will, he has marched this season into the Lower-Donau Countries,—going to besiege Widdin, they say,—at the head of a big Army (on paper, almost a hundred and fifty thousand, light troops and heavy)—virtually Commander-in-Chief; though nominally our fine young friend Franz of Lorraine bears the title of Commander, whom Seckendorf is to dry-nurse in the way sometimes practised. Going to besiege Widdin, they say. So has the poor Kaiser been advised. His wise old Eugene is now gone; [Died 30th April, 1736.] I fear his advisers,—a youngish Feldzeugmeister, Prince of Hildburghausen, the chief favorite among them,—are none of the wisest. All Protestants, we observe, these favorite Hildburghausens, Schmettaus, Seckendorfs of his; and Vienna is an orthodox papal Court;—and there is a Hofkriegsrath (Supreme Council of War), which has ruined many a General, poking too meddlesomely into his affairs! On the whole, Seckendorf will have his difficulties. Here is a scene, on the Lower Donau, different enough from that at Oczakow, not far from contemporaneous with it. The Austrian Army is at Kolitz, a march or two beyond Belgrade:—

"KOLITZ, 2d JULY, 1737. This day, the Army not being on march, but allowed to rest itself, Grand Duke Franz went into the woods to hunt. Hunting up and down, he lost himself; did not return at evening; and, as the night closed in and no Generalissimo visible, the Generalissimo AD LATUS (such the title they had contrived for Seckendorf) was in much alarm. Generalissimo AD LATUS ordered out his whole force of drummers, trumpeters: To fling themselves, postwise, deeper and deeper into the woods all round; to drum there, and blow, in ever-widening circle, in prescribed notes, and with all energy, till the Grand Duke were found. Grand Duke being found, Seckendorf remonstrated, rebuked; a thought too earnestly, some say, his temper being flurried,"—voice snuffling somewhat in alt, with lisp to help:—"so that the Grand Duke took offence; flung off in a huff: and always looked askance on the Feldmarschall from that time;" [See Lebensgeschichte des Grafen van Schmettau (by his Son: Berlin, 1806), i. 27.]—quitting him altogether before long; and marching with Khevenhuller, Wallis, Hildburghausen, or any of the subordinate Generals rather. Probably Widdin will not go the road of Oczakow, nor the Austrians prosper like the Russians, this summer.

Pollnitz, in Tobacco-Parliament, and in certain Berlin circles foolishly agape about this new Feldmarschall, maintains always, Seckendorf will come to nothing; which his Majesty zealously contradicts,—his Majesty, and some short-sighted private individuals still favorable to Seckendorf. [Pollnitz, Memoiren, ii. 497-502.] Exactly one week after that singular drum-and-trumpet operation on Duke Franz, the Last of the Medici dies at Florence; [9th July (Fastes de Louis XV., p. 304).] and Serene Franz, if he knew it, is Grand Duke of Tuscany, according to bargain: a matter important to himself chiefly, and to France, who, for Stanislaus and Lorraine's sake, has had to pay him some 200,000 pounds a year during the brief intermediate state.


These remote occurrences are of small interest to his Prussian Majesty, in comparison with the Pfalz affair, the Cleve-Julich succession, which lies so near home. His Majesty is uncommonly anxious to have this matter settled, in peace, if possible. Kaiser and Reich, with the other Mediating Powers, go on mediating; but when will they decide? This year the old Bishop of Augsburg, one Brother of the older Kur-Pfalz Karl Philip, dies; nothing now between us and the event itself, but Karl Philip alone, who is verging towards eighty: the decision, to be peaceable, ought to be speedy! Friedrich Wilhelm, in January last, sent the expert Degenfeld, once of London, to old Karl Philip; and has him still there, with the most conciliatory offers: "Will leave your Sulzbachs a part, then; will be content with part, instead of the whole, which is mine if there be force in sealed parchment; will do anything for peace!" To which the old Kur-Pfalz, foolish old creature, is steadily deaf; answers vaguely, negatively always, in a polite manner; pushing his Majesty upon extremities painful to think of. "We hate war; but cannot quite do without justice, your Serenity," thinks Friedrich Wilhelm: "must it be the eighty thousand iron ramrods, then?" Obstinate Serenity continues deaf; and Friedrich Wilhelm's negotiations, there at Mannheim, over in Holland, and through Holland with England, not to speak of Kaiser and Reich close at hand, become very intense; vehemently earnest, about this matter, for the next two years. The details of which, inexpressibly uninteresting, shall be spared the reader.

Summary is, these Mediating Powers will be of no help to his Majesty; not even the Dutch will, with whom he is specially in friendship: nay, in the third year it becomes fatally manifest, the chief Mediating Powers, Kaiser and France, listening rather to political convenience, than to the claims of justice, go direct in Kur-Pfalz's favor;—by formal treaty of their own, ["Versailles, 13th January, 1739" (Olrich, Geschichte der Schlesischen Kriege, i. 13); Mauvillon, ii 405-446; &c.] France and the Kaiser settle, "That the Sulzbachers shall, as a preliminary, get provisional possession, on the now Serenity's decease; and shall continue undisturbed for two years, till Law decide between his Prussian Majesty and them." Two years; Law decide;—and we know what are the NINE-POINTS in a Law-case! This, at last, proved too much for his Majesty. Majesty's abstruse dubitations, meditations on such treatment by a Kaiser and others, did then, it appears, gloomily settle into fixed private purpose of trying it by the iron ramrods, when old Kur-Pfalz should die,—of marching with eighty thousand men into the Cleve Countries, and SO welcoming any Sulzbach or other guests that might arrive. Happily old Kur-Pfalz did not die in his Majesty's time; survived his Majesty several years: so that the matter fell into other hands,—and was settled very well, near a century after.

Of certain wranglings with the little Town of Herstal,—Prussian Town (part of the Orange Heritage, once KING PEPIN'S Town, if that were any matter now) in the Bishop of Liege's neighborhood, Town highly insignificant otherwise,—we shall say nothing here, as they will fall to be treated, and be settled, at an after stage. Friedrich Wilhelm was much grieved by the contumacies of that paltry little Herstal; and by the Bishop of Liege's high-flown procedures in countenancing them;—especially in a recruiting ease that had fallen out there, and brought matters to a head. ["December, 1738," is crisis of the recruiting case (Helden-Geschichte, ii. 63); "17th February, 1739," Bishop's high-flown appearance in it (ib. 67); Kaiser's in consequence, "10th April, 1739."] The Kaiser too was afflictively high in countenancing the Bishop;—-for which both Kaiser and Bishop got due payment in time. But his Prussian Majesty would not kindle the world for such a paltriness; and so left it hanging in a vexatious condition. Such things, it is remarked, weigh heavier on his now infirm Majesty than they were wont. He is more subject to fits of hypochondria, to talk of abdicating. "All gone wrong!" he would say, if any little flaw rose, about recruiting or the like. "One might go and live at Venice, were one rid of it!" [Forster (place LOST).] And his deep-stung clangorous growl against the Kaiser's treatment of him bursts out, from time to time; though he oftenest pities the Kaiser, too; seeing him at such a pass with his Turk War and otherwise.

It was in this Pfalz business that Herr Luiscius, the Prussian Minister in Holland, got into trouble; of whom there is a light dash of outline-portraiture by Voltaire, which has made him memorable to readers. This "fat King of Prussia," says Voltaire, was a dreadfully avaricious fellow, unbeautiful to a high degree in his proceedings with mankind:—

"He had a Minister at the Hague called Luiscius; who certainly of all Ministers of Crowned Heads was the worst paid. This poor man, to warm himself, had made some trees be felled in the Garden of Honslardik, which belonged at that time to the House of Prussia; he thereupon received despatches from the King, intimating that a year of his salary was forfeited. Luiscius, in despair, cut his throat with probably the one razor he had (SEUL RASOIR QU'IL EUT); an old valet came to his assistance, and unhappily saved his life. In after years, I found his Excellency at the Hague; and have occasionally given him an alms at the door of the VIEILLE COUR (Old Court), a Palace belonging to the King of Prussia, where this poor Ambassador had lived a dozen years. It must be owned, Turkey is a republic in comparison to the despotism exercised by Friedrich Wilhelm." [OEuvres de Voltaire (Vie Pricee, or what they now call Memoires ), ii. 15.]

Here truly is a witty sketch; consummately dashed off, as nobody but Voltaire could; "round as Giotto's O," done at one stroke. Of which the prose facts are only as follows. Luiscius, Prussian Resident, not distinguished by salary or otherwise, had, at one stage of these negotiations, been told, from head-quarters, He might, in casual extra-official ways, if it seemed furthersome, give their High Mightinesses the hope, or notion, that his Majesty did not intend actual war about that Cleve-Julich Succession,—being a pacific Majesty, and unwilling to involve his neighbors and mankind. Luiscius, instead of casual hint delicately dropped in some good way, had proceeded by direct declaration; frank assurance to the High Mightinesses, That there would be no war. Which had never been quite his Majesty's meaning, and perhaps was now becoming rather the reverse of it. Disavowal of Luiscius had to ensue thereupon; who produced defensively his instruction from head-quarters; but got only rebukes for such heavy-footed clumsy procedure, so unlike Diplomacy with its shoes of felt;—and, in brief, was turned out of the Diplomatic function, as unfit for it; and appointed to manage certain Orange Properties, fragments of the Orange Heritage which his Majesty still has in those Countries. This misadventure sank heavily on the spirits of Luiscius, otherwise none of the strongest-minded of men. Nor did he prosper in managing the Orange Properties: on the contrary, he again fell into mistakes; got soundly rebuked for injudicious conduct there,—"cutting trees," planting trees, or whatever it was;—and this produced such an effect on Luiscius, that he made an attempt on his own throat, distracted mortal; and was only stopped by somebody rushing in. "It was not the first time he had tried that feat," says Pollnitz, "and been prevented; nor was it long till he made a new attempt, which was again frustrated: and always afterwards his relations kept him close in view:" Majesty writing comfortable forgiveness to the perturbed creature, and also "settling a pension on him;" adequate, we can hope, and not excessive; "which Luiscius continued to receive, at the Hague, so long as he lived." These are the prose facts; not definitely dated to us, but perfectly clear otherwise. [Pollnitz, ii. 495, 496;—the "NEW attempt" seems to have been "June, 1739" ( Gentleman's Magazine, in mense, p. 331).]

Voltaire, in his Dutch excursions, did sometimes, in after years, lodge in that old vacant Palace, called VIEILLE COUR, at the Hague; where he gracefully celebrates the decayed forsaken state of matters; dusky vast rooms with dim gilding; forgotten libraries "veiled under the biggest spider-webs in Europe;" for the rest, an uncommonly quiet place, convenient for a writing man, besides costing nothing. A son of this Luiscius, a good young lad, it also appears, was occasionally Voltaire's amanuensis there; him he did recommend zealously to the new King of Prussia, who was not deaf on the occasion. This, in the fire of satirical wit, is what we can transiently call "giving alms to a Prussian Excellency;"—not now excellent, but pensioned and cracked; and the reader perceives, Luiscius had probably more than one razor, had not one been enough, when he did the rash act. Friedrich employed Luiscius Junior, with no result that we hear of farther; and seems to have thought Luiscius Senior an absurd fellow, not worth mentioning again: "ran away from the Cleve Country [probably some mad-house there] above a year ago, I hear; and what is the matter where such a crack-brain end?" [Voltaire, OEuvres (Letter to Friedrich, 7th October, 1740), lxxii. 261; and Fredrich's answer (wrong dated), ib. 265; Preuss, xxii. 33.]

Chapter V. — VISIT AT LOO.

The Pfalz question being in such a predicament, and Luiscius diplomatizing upon it in such heavy-footed manner, his Majesty thinks a journey to Holland, to visit one's Kinsfolk there, and incidentally speak a word with the High Mightinesses upon Pfalz, would not be amiss. Such journey is decided on; Crown-Prince to accompany. Summer of 1738: a short visit, quite without fuss; to last only three days;—mere sequel to the Reviews held in those adjacent Cleve Countries; so that the Gazetteers may take no notice. All which was done accordingly: Crown-Prince's first sight of Holland; and one of the few reportable points of his Reinsberg life, and not quite without memorability to him and us.

On the 8th of July, 1738, the Review Party got upon the road for Wesel: all through July, they did their reviewing in those Cleve Countries; and then struck across for the Palace of Loo in Geldern, where a Prince of Orange countable kinsman to his Prussian Majesty, and a Princess still more nearly connected,—English George's Daughter, own niece to his Prussian Majesty,—are in waiting for this distinguished honor. The Prince of Orange we have already seen, for a moment once; at the siege of Philipsburg four years ago, when the sale of Chasot's horses went off so well. "Nothing like selling horses when your company have dined well," whispered he to Chasot, at that time; since which date we have heard nothing of his Highness.

He is not a beautiful man; he has a crooked back, and features conformable; but is of prompt vivacious nature, and does not want for sense and good-humor. Paternal George, the gossips say, warned his Princess, when this marriage was talked of, "You will find him very ill-looking, though!" "And if I found him a baboon—!" answered she; being so heartily tired of St. James's. And in fact, for anything I have heard, they do well enough together. She is George II.'s eldest Princess;—next elder to our poor Amelia, who was once so interesting to us! What the Crown-Prince now thought of all that, I do not know; but the Books say, poor Amelia wore the willow, and specially wore the Prince's miniature on her breast all her days after, which were many. Grew corpulent, somewhat a huddle in appearance and equipment, "eyelids like upper-LIPS," for one item: but when life itself fled, the miniature was found in its old place, resting on the old heart after some sixty years. O Time, O Sons and Daughters of Time!—

His Majesty's reception at Loo was of the kind he liked,—cordial, honorable, unceremonious; and these were three pleasant days he had. Pleasant for the Crown-Prince too; as the whole Journey had rather been; Papa, with covert satisfaction, finding him a wise creature, after all, and "more serious" than formerly. "Hm, you don't know what things are in that Fritz!" his Majesty murmured sometimes, in these later years, with a fine light in his eyes.

Loo itself is a beautiful Palace: "Loo, close by the Village Appeldoorn, is a stately brick edifice, built with architectural regularity; has finely decorated rooms, beautiful gardens, and round are superb alleys of oak and linden." [Busching, Erdbeschreibung, viii. 69.] There saunters pleasantly our Crown-Prince, for these three days;—and one glad incident I do perceive to have befallen him there: the arrival of a Letter from Voltaire. Letter much expected, which had followed him from Wesel; and which he answers here, in this brick Palace, among the superb avenues and gardens. [OEuvres, xxi. 203, the Letter, "Cirey, June, 1738;" Ib. 222, the Answer to it, "Loo, 6th August, 1738."]

No doubt a glad incident, irradiating, as with a sudden sunburst in gray weather, the commonplace of things. Here is news worth listening to; news as from the empyrean! Free interchange of poetries and proses, of heroic sentiments and opinions, between the Unique of Sages and the Paragon of Crown-Princes; how charming to both! Literary business, we perceive, is brisk on both hands; at Cirey the Discours sur l'Homme ("Sixth DISCOURS" arrives in this packet at Loo, surely a deathless piece of singing); nor is Reinsberg idle: Reinsberg is copiously doing verse, such verse! and in prose, very earnestly, an "ANTI-MACHIAVEL;" which soon afterwards filled all the then world, though it has now fallen so silent again. And at Paris, as Voltaire announces with a flourish, "M. de Maupertuis's excellent Book, Figure de la T'erre, is out;" [Paris, 1738: Maupertuis's "measurement of a degree," in the utmost North, 1736-1737 (to prove the Earth flattened there). Vivid Narrative; somewhat gesticulative, but duly brief. The only Book of that great Maupertuis which is now readable to human nature.] M. de Maupertuis, home from the Polar regions and from measuring the Earth there; the sublimest miracle in Paris society at present. Might build, new-build, an ACADEMY OF SCIENCES at Berlin for your Royal Highness, one day? suggests Voltaire, on this occasion: and Friedrich, as we shall see, takes the hint. One passage of the Crown-Prince's Answer is in these terms;—fixing this Loo visit to its date for us, at any rate:—

"LOO IN HOLLAND, 6th AUGUST, 1739.... I write from a place where there lived once a great man [William III. of England, our Dutch William]; which is now the Prince of Orange's House. The demon of Ambition sheds its unhappy poisons over his days. He might be the most fortunate of men; and he is devoured by chagrins in his beautiful Palace here, in the middle of his gardens and of a brilliant Court. It is pity in truth; for he is a Prince with no end of wit (INFINIMENT D'ESPRIT), and has respectable qualites." Not Stadtholder, unluckily; that is where the shoe pinches; the Dutch are on the Republican tack, and will not have a Stadtholder at present. No help for it in one's beautiful gardens and avenues of oak and linden.

"I have talked a great deal about Newton with the Princess,"—about Newton; never hinted at Amelia; not permissible!—"from Newton we passed to Leibnitz; and from Leibnitz to the Late Queen of England," Caroline lately gone, "who, the Prince told me, was of Clarke's sentiment" on that important theological controversy now dead to mankind.—And of Jenkins and his Ear did the Princess say nothing? That is now becoming a high phenomenon in England! But readers must wait a little.

Pity that we cannot give these two Letters in full; that no reader, almost, could be made to understand them, or to care for them when understood. Such the cruelty of Time upon this Voltaire-Friedrich Correspondence, and some others; which were once so rosy, sunny, and are now fallen drearily extinct,—studiable by Editors only! In itself the Friedrich-Voltaire Correspondence, we can see, was charming; very blossomy at present: businesses increasing; mutual admiration now risen to a great height,—admiration sincere on both sides, most so on the Prince's, and extravagantly expressed on both sides, most so on Voltaire's.


His Majesty, we said, had three pleasant days at Loo; discoursing, as with friends, on public matters, or even on more private matters, in a frank unconstrained way. He is not to be called "Majesty" on this occasion; but the fact, at Loo, and by the leading Mightinesses of the Republic, who come copiously to compliment him there, is well remembered. Talk there was, with such leading Mightinesses, about the Julich-and-Berg question, aim of this Journey: earnest enough private talk with some of them: but it availed nothing; and would not be worth reporting now to any creature, if we even knew it. In fact, the Journey itself remains mentionable chiefly by one very trifling circumstance; and then by another, not important either, which followed out of that. The trifling circumstance is,—That Friedrich, in the course of this Journey, became a Freemason: and the unimportant sequel was, That he made acquaintance with one Bielfeld, on the occasion; who afterwards wrote a Book about him, which was once much read, though never much worth reading, and is still citable, with precaution, now and then. [Monsieur le Baron de Bielfeld, Lettres Familieres et Autres, 1763;—second edition, 2 vols. a Leide, 1767, is the one we use here.] Trifling circumstance, of Freemasonry, as we read in Bielfeld and in many Books after him, befell in manner following.

Among the dinner-guests at Loo, one of those three days, was a Prince of Lippe-Buckeburg,—Prince of small territory, but of great speculation; whose territory lies on the Weser, leading to Dutch connections; and whose speculations stretch over all the Universe, in a high fantastic style:—he was a dinner-guest; and one of the topics that came up was Freemasonry; a phantasmal kind of object, which had kindled itself, or rekindled, in those years, in England first of all; and was now hovering about, a good deal, in Germany and other countries; pretending to be a new light of Heaven, and not a bog-meteor of phosphorated hydrogen, conspicuous in the murk of things. Bog-meteor, foolish putrescent will-o'-wisp, his Majesty promptly defined it to be: Tom-foolery and KINDERSPIEL, what else? Whereupon ingenious Buckeburg, who was himself a Mason, man of forty by this time, and had high things in him of the Quixotic type, ventured on defence; and was so respectful, eloquent, dexterous, ingenious, he quite captivated, if not his Majesty, at least the Crown-Prince, who was more enthusiastic for high things. Crown-Prince, after table, took his Durchlaucht of Buckeburg aside; talked farther on the subject, expressed his admiration, his conviction,—his wish to be admitted into such a Hero Fraternity. Nothing could be welcomer to Durchlaucht. And so, in all privacy, it was made up betweeen them, That Durchlaucht, summoning as many mystic Brothers out of Hamburg as were needful, should be in waiting with them, on the Crown-Prince's road homeward,—say at Brunswick, night before the Fair, where we are to be,—and there make the Crown-Prince a Mason. [Bielfeld, i. 14-16; Preuss, i. 111; Preuss, Buch fur Jedermann, i. 41.]

This is Bielfeld's account, repeated ever since; substantially correct, except that the scene was not Loo at all: dinner and dialogue, it now appears, took place in Durchlaucht's own neighborhood, during the Cleve Review time; "probably at Minden, 17th July;" and all was settled into fixed program before Loo came in sight. [OEuvres de Frederic, xvs. 201: Friedrich's Letter to this Durchlaucht, "Comte de Schaumbourg-Lippe" he calls him; date, "Moyland, 26th July, 1738: "Moyland, a certain SCHLOSS, or habitable Mansion, of his Majesty's, few miles to north of Mors in the Cleve Country; where his Majesty used often to pause;—and where (what will be much more remarkable to readers) the Crown-Prince and Voltaire had their first meeting, two years hence.] Bielfeld's report of the subsequent procedure at Brunswick, as he saw it and was himself part of it, is liable to no mistakes, at least of the involuntary kind; and may, for anything we know, be correct in every particular.

He says (veiling it under discreet asterisks, which are now decipherable enough), The Durchlaucht of Lippe-Buckeburg had summoned six Brethren of the Hamburg Lodge; of whom we mention only a Graf von Kielmannsegge, a Baron von Oberg, both from Hanover, and Bielfeld himself, a Merchant's Son, of Hamburg; these, with "Kielmannsegge's Valet to act as Tiler," Valet being also a Mason, and the rule equality of mankind,—were to have the honor of initiating the Crown-Prince. They arrived at the Western Gate of Brunswick on the 11th of August, as prearranged; Prussian Majesty not yet come, but coming punctually on the morrow. It is Fair-time; all manner of traders, pedlers, showmen rendezvousing; many neighboring Nobility too, as was still the habit. "Such a bulk of light luggage?" said the Custom-house people at the Gate;—but were pacified by slipping them a ducat. Upon which we drove to "Korn's Hotel" (if anybody now knew it); and there patiently waited. No great things of a Hotel, says Bielfeld; but can be put up with;—worst feature is, we discover a Hanover acquaintance lodging close by, nothing but a wooden partition between us: How if he should overhear!—

Prussian Majesty and suite, under universal cannon-salvos, arrived, Sunday the 12th; to stay till Wednesday (three days) with his august Son-in-law and Daughter here. Durchlaucht Lippe presents himself at Court, the rest of us not; privately settles with the Prince: "Tuesday night, eve of his Majesty's departure; that shall be the night: at Korn's Hotel, late enough!" And there, accordingly, on the appointed night, 14th-15th August, 1738, the light-luggage trunks have yielded their stage-properties; Jachin and Boaz are set up, and all things are ready; Tiler (Kielmannsegge's Valet) watching with drawn sword against the profane. As to our Hanover neighbor, on the other side the partition, says Bielfeld, we waited on him, this day after dinner, successively paying our respects; successively pledged him in so many bumpers, he is lying dead drunk hours ago, could not overhear a cannon-battery, he. And soon after midnight, the Crown-Prince glides in, a Captain Wartensleben accompanying, who is also a candidate; and the mysterious rites are accomplished on both of them, on the Crown-Prince first, without accident, and in the usual way.

Bielfeld could not enough admire the demeanor of this Prince, his clearness, sense, quiet brilliancy; and how he was so "intrepid," and "possessed himself so gracefully in the most critical instants." Extremely genial air, and so young, looks younger even than his years: handsome to a degree, though of short stature. Physiognomy, features, quite charming; fine auburn hair (BEAU BRUN), a negligent plenty of it; "his large blue eyes have something at once severe, sweet and gracious." Eligible Mason indeed. Had better make despatch at present, lest Papa be getting on the road before him!—Bielfeld delivered a small address, composed beforehand; with which the Prince seemed to be content. And so, with masonic grip, they made their adieus for the present; and the Crown-Prince and Wartensleben were back at their posts, ready for the road along with his Majesty.

His Majesty came on Sunday; goes on Wednesday, home now at a stretch; and, we hope, has had a good time of it here, these three days. Daughter Charlotte and her Serene Husband, well with their subjects, well with one another, are doing well; have already two little Children; a Boy the elder, of whom we have heard: Boy's name is Karl, age now three; sprightly, reckoned very clever, by the fond parents;—who has many things to do in the world, by and by; to attack the French Revolution, and be blown to pieces by it on the Field of Jena, for final thing! That is the fate of little Karl, who frolics about here, so sunshiny and ingenuous at present.

Karl's Grandmother, the Serene Dowager Duchess, Friedrich's own Mother-in-law, his Majesty and Friedrich would also of course see here. Fine Younger Sons of hers are coming forward; the reigning Duke beautifully careful about the furtherance of these Cadets of the House. Here is Prince Ferdinand, for instance; just getting ready for the Grand Tour; goes in a month hence: [Mauvillon (FILS, son of him whom we cite otherwise), Geschichte Ferdinands Herzogs von Braunschweig-Luneburg (Leipzig, 1794), i. 17-25.] a fine eupeptic loyal young fellow; who, in a twenty years more, will be Chatham's Generalissimo, and fight the French to some purpose. A Brother of his, the next elder, is now fighting the Turks for his Kaiser; does not like it at all, under such Seckendorfs and War-Ministries as there are. Then, elder still, eldest of all the Cadets, there is Anton Ulrich, over at Petersburg for some years past, with outlooks high enough: To wed the Mecklenburg Princess there (Daughter of the unutterable Duke), and be as good as Czar of all the Russias one day. Little to his profit, poor soul!—These, historically ascertainable, are the aspects of the Brunswick Court during those three days of Royal Visit, in Fair-time; and may serve to date the Masonic Transaction for us, which the Crown-Prince has just accomplished over at Korn's.

As for the Transaction itself, there is intrinsically no harm in this initiation, we will hope: but it behooves to be kept well hidden from Papa. Papa's good opinion of the Prince has sensibly risen, in the course of this Journey, "so rational, serious, not dangling about among the women as formerly;"—and what a shock would this of Korn's Hotel be, should Papa hear of it! Poor Papa, from officious tale-bearers he hears many things: is in distress about Voltaire, about Heterodoxies;—and summoned the Crown-Prince, by express, from Reinsberg, on one occasion lately, over to Potsdam, "to take the Communion" there, by way of case-hardening against Voltaire and Heterodoxies! Think of it, human readers!—We will add the following stray particulars, more or less illustrative of the Masonic Transaction; and so end that trifling affair.

The Captain Wartensleben, fellow-recipient of the mysteries at Brunswick, is youngest son, by a second marriage, of old Feldmarschall Wartensleben, now deceased; and is consequently Uncle, Half-Uncle, of poor Lieutenant Katte, though some years younger than Katte would now have been. Tender memories hang by Wartensleben, in a silent way! He is Captain in the Potsdam Giants; somewhat an intimate, and not undeservedly so, of the Crown-Prince;—succeeds Wolden as Hofmarschall at Reinsberg, not many months after this; Wolden having died of an apoplectic stroke. Of Bielfeld comes a Book, slightly citable; from no other of the Brethren, or their Feat at Kern's, comes (we may say) anything whatever. The Crown-Prince prosecuted his Masonry, at Reinsberg or elsewhere, occasionally, for a year or two; but was never ardent in it; and very soon after his Accession, left off altogether: "Child's-play and IGNIS FATUUS mainly!" A Royal Lodge was established at Berlin, of which the new King consented to be patron; but he never once entered the place; and only his Portrait (a welcomely good one, still to be found there) presided over the mysteries in that Establishment. Harmless "fire," but too "fatuous;" mere flame-circles cut in the air, for infants, we know how!—

With Lippe-Buckeburg there ensued some Correspondence, high enough on his Serenity's side; but it soon languished on the Prince's side; and in private Poetry, within a two years of this Brunswick scene, we find Lippe used proverbially for a type-specimen of Fools. ["Taciturne, Caton, avec mes bons parents, Aussi fou que la Lippe met les jeunes gens." OEuvres, xi. 80 (Discours sur la Faussete, written 1740).] A windy fantastic individual;—overwhelmed in finance-difficulties too! Lippe continued writing; but "only Secretaries now answered him" from Berlin. A son of his, son and successor, something of a Quixote too, but notable in Artillery-practice and otherwise, will turn up at a future stage.

Nor is Bielfeld with his Book a thing of much moment to Friedrich or to us. Bielfeld too has a light airy vein of talk; loves Voltaire and the Philosophies in a light way;—knows the arts of Society, especially the art of flattering; and would fain make himself agreeable to the Crown-Prince, being anxious to rise in the world. His Father is a Hamburg Merchant, Hamburg "Sealing-wax Manufacturer," not ill off for money: Son has been at schools, high schools, under tutors, posture-masters; swashes about on those terms, with French ESPRIT in his mouth, and lace ruffles at his wrists; still under thirty; showy enough, sharp enough; considerably a coxcomb, as is still evident. He did transiently get about Friedrich, as we shall see; and hoped to have sold his heart to good purpose there;—was, by and by, employed in slight functions; not found fit for grave ones. In the course of some years, he got a title of Baron; and sold his heart more advantageously, to some rich Widow or Fraulein; with whom he retired to Saxony, and there lived on an Estate he had purchased, a stranger to Prussia thenceforth.

His Book (Lettres Familieres et Autres, all turning on Friedrich), which came out in 1763, at the height of Friedrich's fame, and was much read, is still freely cited by Historians as an Authority. But the reading of a few pages sufficiently intimates that these "Letters" never can have gone through a terrestrial Post-office; that they are an afterthought, composed from vague memory and imagination, in that fine Saxon retreat;—a sorrowful ghost-like "TRAVELS OF ANACHARSIS," instead of living words by an eye-witness! Not to be cited "freely" at all, but sparingly and under conditions. They abound in small errors, in misdates, mistakes; small fictions even, and impossible pretensions:—foolish mortal, to write down his bit of knowledge in that form! For the man, in spite of his lace ruffles and gesticulations, has brisk eyesight of a superficial kind: he COULD have done us this little service (apparently his one mission in the world, for which Nature gave him bed and board here); and he, the lace ruffles having gone into his soul, has been tempted into misdoing it!—Bielfeld and Bielfeld's Book, such as they are, appear to be the one conquest Friedrich got of Freemasonry; no other result now traceable to us of that adventure in Korn's Hotel, crowning event of the Journey to Loo.


Feldmarschall Seckendorf, after unheard-of wrestlings with the Turk War, and the Vienna War-Office (HOFKRIEGSRATH), is sitting, for the last three weeks,—where thinks the reader?—in the Fortress of Gratz among the Hills of Styria; a State-Prisoner, not likely to get out soon! Seckendorf led forth, in 1737, "such an Army, for number, spirit and equipment," say the Vienna people, "as never marched against the Turk before;" and it must be owned, his ill success has been unparalleled. The blame was not altogether his; not chiefly his, except for his rash undertaking of the thing, on such terms as there were. But the truth is, that first scene we saw of him,—an Army all gone out trumpeting and drumming into the woods to FIND its Commander-in-Chief,—was an emblem of the Campaign in general. Excellent Army; but commanded by nobody in particular; commanded by a HOFKRIEGSRATH at Vienna, by a Franz Duke of Tuscany, by Feldmarschall Seckendorf, and by subordinates who were disobedient to him: which accordingly, almost without help of the Turk and his disorderly ferocity, rubbed itself to pieces before long. Roamed about, now hither now thither, with plans laid and then with plans suddenly altered, Captain being Chaos mainly; in swampy countries, by overflowing rivers, in hunger, hot weather, forced marches; till it was marched gradually off its feet; and the clouds of chaotic Turks, who did finally show face, had a cheap pennyworth of it. Never was such a campaign seen as this of Seckendorf in 1737, said mankind. Except indeed that the present one, Campaign of 1738, in those parts, under a different hand, is still worse; and the Campaign of 1739, under still a different, will be worst of all!—Kaiser Karl and his Austrians do not prosper in this Turk War, as the Russians do,—who indeed have got a General equal to his task: Munnich, a famed master in the art of handling Turks and War-Ministries: real father of Russian Soldiering, say the Russians still. [See MANNSTEIN for Munnich's plans with the Turk (methods and devices of steady Discipline in small numbers VERSUS impetuous Ferocity in great); and Berenhorst (Betrachtungen uber die Kriegskunst, Leipzig, 1796), a first-rate Authority, for examples and eulogies of them.]

Campaign 1737, with clouds of chaotic Turks now sabring on the skirts of it, had not yet ended, when Seckendorf was called out of it; on polite pretexts, home to Vienna; and the command given to another. At the gates of Vienna, in the last days of October, 1737, an Official Person, waiting for the Feldmarschall, was sorry to inform him, That he, Feldmarschall Seckendorf, was under arrest; arrest in his own house, in the KOHLMARKT (Cabbage-market so called), a captain and twelve musketeers to watch over him with fixed bayonets there; strictly private, till the HOFKRIEGSRATH had satisfied themselves in a point or two. "Hmph!" snuffled he; with brow blushing slate-color, I should think, and gray eyes much alight. And ever since, for ten months or so, Seckendorf, sealed up in the Cabbage-market, has been fencing for life with the HOFKRIEGSRATH; who want satisfaction upon "eighty-six" different "points;" and make no end of chicaning to one's clear answers. And the Jesuits preach, too: "A Heretic, born enemy of Christ and his Kaiser; what is the use of questioning!" And the Heathen rage, and all men gnash their teeth, in this uncomfortable manner.

Answering done, there comes no verdict, much less any acquittal; the captain and twelve musketeers, three of them with fixed bayonets in one's very bedroom, continue. One evening, 21st July, 1738, glorious news from the seat of War—not TILL evening, as the Imperial Majesty was out hunting—enters Vienna; blowing trumpets; shaking flags: "Grand Victory over the Turks!" so we call some poor skirmish there has been; and Vienna bursting all into three-times-three, the populace get very high. Populace rush to the Kohlmarkt: break the Seckendorf windows; intent to massacre the Seckendorf; had not fresh military come, who were obliged to fire and kill one or two. "The house captain and his twelve musketeers, of themselves, did wonders; Seckendorf and all his domestics were in arms:" "JARNI-BLEU" for the last time!—This is while the Crown-Prince is at Wesel; sound asleep, most likely; Loo, and the Masonic adventure, perhaps twinkling prophetically in his dreams.

At two next morning, an Official Gentleman informs Seckendorf, That he, for his part, must awaken, and go to Gratz. And in one hour more (3 A.M.), the Official Gentleman rolls off with him; drives all day; and delivers his Prisoner at Gratz:—"Not so much as a room ready there; Prisoner had to wait an hour in the carriage," till some summary preparation were made. Wall-neighbors of the poor Feldmarschall, in his Fortress here, were "a GOLD-COOK (swindling Alchemist), who had gone crazy; and an Irish Lieutenant, confined thirty-two years for some love-adventure, likewise pretty crazy; their noises in the night-time much disturbed the Feldmarschall." [Seckendorfs Leben, ii. 170-277 pp. 27-59.] One human thing there still is in his lot, the Feldmarschall's old Grafinn. True old Dame, she, both in the Kohlmarkt and at Gratz, stands by him, "imprisoned along with him" if it must be so; ministering, comforting, as only a true Wife can;—and hope has not quite taken wing.

Rough old Feldmarschall; now turned of sixty: never made such a Campaign before, as this of 1737 followed by 1738! There sits he; and will not trouble us any more during the present Kaiser's lifetime. Friedrich Wilhelm is amazed at these sudden cantings of Fortune's wheel, and grieves honestly as for an old friend: even the Crown-Prince finds Seckendorf punished unjustly; and is almost, sorry for him, after all that has come and gone.


We must add the following, distilled from the English Newspapers, though it is now almost four months after date:—

"LONDON, 1st APRIL, 1738. In the English House of Commons, much more in the English Public, there has been furious debating for a fortnight past: Committee of the whole House, examining witnesses, hearing counsel; subject, the Termagant of Spain, and her West-Indian procedures;—she, by her procedures somewhere, is always cutting out work for mankind! How English and other strangers, fallen-in with in those seas, are treated by the Spaniards, readers have heard, nay have chanced to see; and it is a fact painfully known to all nations. Fact which England, for one nation, can no longer put up with. Walpole and the Official Persons would fain smooth the matter; but the West-India Interest, the City, all Mercantile and Navigation Interests are in dead earnest: Committee of the whole House, 'Presided by Alderman Perry,' has not ears enough to hear the immensities of evidence offered; slow Public is gradually kindling to some sense of it. This had gone on for two weeks, when—what shall we say?—the EAR OF JENKINS re-emerged for the second time; and produced important effects!

"Where Jenkins had been all this while,—steadfastly navigating to and fro, steadfastly eating tough junk with a wetting of rum; not thinking too much of past labors, yet privately 'always keeping his lost Ear in cotton' (with a kind of ursine piety, or other dumb feeling),—no mortal now knows. But to all mortals it is evident he was home in London at this time; no doubt a noted member of Wapping society, the much-enduring Jenkins. And witnesses, probably not one but many, had mentioned him to this Committee, as a case eminently in point. Committee, as can still be read in its Rhadamanthine Journals, orders: 'DIE JOVIS, 16* MARTII 1737-1738, That Captain Robert Jenkins do attend this House immediately;' and then more specially, '17* MARTII' captious objections having risen in Official quarters, as we guess,—'That Captain Robert Jenkins do attend upon Tuesday morning next.' [Commons Journals, xxiii. (in diebus).] Tuesday next is 21st March,—1st of April, 1738, by our modern Calendar;—and on that day, not a doubt, Jenkins does attend; narrates that tremendous passage we already heard of, seven years ago, in the entrance of the Gulf of Florida; and produces his Ear wrapt in cotton:—setting all on flame (except the Official persons) at sight of it."

Official persons, as their wont is in the pressure of debate, endeavored to deny, to insinuate in their vile Newspapers, That Jenkins lost his Ear nearer home and not for nothing; as one still reads in the History Books. [Tindal (xx. 372). Coxe, &c.] Sheer calumnies, we now find. Jenkins's account was doubtless abundantly emphatic; but there is no ground to question the substantial truth of him and it. And so, after seven years of unnoticeable burning upon the thick skin of the English Public, the case of Jenkins accidentally burns through, and sets England bellowing; such a smart is there of it,—not to be soothed by Official wet-cloths; but getting worse and worse, for the nineteen months ensuing. And in short—But we will not anticipate!


The Idyllium of Reinsberg—of which, except in the way of sketchy suggestion, there can no history be given—lasted less than four years; and is now coming to an end, unexpectedly soon. A pleasant Arcadian Summer in one's life;—though it has not wanted its occasional discords, flaws of ill weather in the general sunshine. Papa, always in uncertain health of late, is getting heavier of foot and of heart under his heavy burdens; and sometimes falls abstruse enough, liable to bewilderments from bad people and events: not much worth noticing here. [See Pollnitz, ii. 509-515; Friedrich's Letter to Wilhelmina ("Berlin, 20th January, 1739:" in OEuvres, xxvii. part 1st, pp. 60, 61); &c. &c.] But the Crown-Prince has learned to deal with all this; all this is of transient nature; and a bright long future seems to lie ahead at Reinsberg;—brightened especially by the Literary Element; which, in this year of 1739, is brisker than it had ever been. Distinguished Visitors, of a literary turn, look in at Reinsberg; the Voltaire Correspondence is very lively; on Friedrich's part there is copious production, various enterprise, in the form of prose and verse; thoughts even of going to press with some of it: in short, the Literary Interest rises very prominent at Reinsberg in 1739. Biography is apt to forget the Literature there (having her reasons); but must at last take some notice of it, among the phenomena of the year.

To the young Prince himself, "courting tranquillity," as his door-lintel intimated, ["Frederico tranquillitatem colenti" (Infra, p. 123).] and forbidden to be active except within limits, this of Literature was all along the great light of existence at Reinsberg; the supplement to all other employments or wants of employment there. To Friedrich himself, in those old days, a great and supreme interest; while again, to the modern Biographer of him, it has become dark and vacant; a thing to be shunned, not sought. So that the fact as it stood with Friedrich differs far from any description that can be given of the fact. Alas, we have said already, and the constant truth is, Friedrich's literatures, his distinguished literary visitors and enterprises, which were once brand-new and brilliant, have grown old as a garment, and are a sorrow rather than otherwise to existing mankind! Conscientious readers, who would represent to themselves the vanished scene at Reinsberg, in this point more especially, must make an effort.

As biographical documents, these Poetries and Proses of the young man give a very pretty testimony of him; but are not of value otherwise. In fact, they promise, if we look well into them, That here is probably a practical faculty and intellect of the highest kind; which again, on the speculative, especially on the poetical side, will never be considerable, nor has even tried to be so. This young soul does not deal in meditation at all, and his tendencies are the reverse of sentimental. Here is no introspection, morbid or other, no pathos or complaint, no melodious informing of the public what dreadful emotions you labor under: here, in rapid prompt form, indicating that it is truth and not fable, are generous aspirations for the world and yourself, generous pride, disdain of the ignoble, of the dark, mendacious;—here, in short, is a swift-handed, valiant, STEEL-bright kind of soul; very likely for a King's, if other things answer, and not likely for a Poet's. No doubt he could have made something of Literature too; could have written Books, and left some stamp of a veracious, more or less victorious intellect, in that strange province too. But then he must have applied himself to it, as he did to reigning: done in the cursory style, we see what it has come to.

It is certain, Friedrich's reputation suffers, at this day, from his writing. From his NOT having written nothing, he stands lower with the world. Which seems hard measure;—though perhaps it is the law of the case, after all. "Nobody in these days," says my poor Friend, "has the least notion of the sinful waste there is in talk, whether by pen or tongue. Better probably that King Friedrich had written no Verses; nay I know not that David's Psalms did David's Kingship any good!" Which may be truer than it seems. Fine aspirations, generous convictions, purposes,—they are thought very fine: but it is good, on various accounts, to keep them rather silent; strictly unvocal, except on call of real business; so dangerous are they for becoming conscious of themselves! Most things do not ripen at all except underground. And it is a sad but sure truth, that every time you SPEAK of a fine purpose, especially if with eloquence and to the admiration of by-standers, there is the LESS chance of your ever making a fact of it in your poor life.—If Reinsberg, and its vacancy of great employment, was the cause of Friedrich's verse-writing, we will not praise Reinsberg on that head! But the truth is, Friedrich's verses came from him with uncommon fluency; and were not a deep matter, but a shallow one, in any sense. Not much more to him than speaking with a will; than fantasying on the flute in an animated strain. Ever and anon through his life, on small hint from without or on great, there was found a certain leakage of verses, which he was prompt to utter;—and the case at Reinsberg, or afterwards, is not so serious as we might imagine.


In late months Friedrich had conceived one notable project; which demands a word in this place. Did modern readers ever hear of "John Pine, the celebrated English Engraver"? John Pine, a man of good scholarship, good skill with his burin, did "Tapestries of the House of Lords," and other things of a celebrated nature, famous at home and abroad: but his peculiar feat, which had commended him at Reinsberg, was an Edition of HORACE: exquisite old FLACCUS brought to perfection, as it were; all done with vignettes, classical borderings, symbolic marginal ornaments, in fine taste and accuracy, the Text itself engraved; all by the exquisite burin of Pine. ["London, 1737" (Biographie Universelle, xxxiv. 465).] This Edition had come out last year, famous over the world; and was by and by, as rumor bore, to be followed by a VIRGIL done in the like exquisite manner.

The Pine HORACE, part of the Pine VIRGIL too, still exist in the libraries of the curious; and are doubtless known to the proper parties, though much forgotten by others of us. To Friedrich, scanning the Pine phenomenon with interest then brand-new, it seemed an admirable tribute to classical genius; and the idea occurred to him, "Is not there, by Heaven's blessing, a living genius, classical like those antique Romans, and worthy of a like tribute?" Friedrich's idea was, That Voltaire being clearly the supreme of Poets, the HENRIADE, his supreme of Poems, ought to be engraved like FLACCUS; text and all, with vignettes, tail-pieces, classical borderings beautifully symbolic and exact; by the exquisite burin of Pine. Which idea the young hero-worshipper, in spite of his finance-difficulties, had resolved to realize; and was even now busy with it, since his return from Loo. "Such beautiful enthusiasm," say some readers; "and in behalf of that particular demi-god!" Alas, yes; to Friedrich he was the best demi-god then going; and Friedrich never had any doubt about him.

For the rest, this heroic idea could not realize itself; and we are happy to have nothing more to do with Pine or the HENRIADE. Correspondences were entered into with Pine, and some pains taken: Pine's high prices were as nothing; but Pine was busy with his VIRGIL; probably, in fact, had little stomach for the HENRIADE; "could not for seven years to come enter upon it:" so that the matter had to die away; and nothing came of it but a small DISSERTATION, or Introductory Essay, which the Prince had got ready,—which is still to be found printed in Voltaire's Works [OEuvres, xiii. 393-402.] and in Friedrich's, if anybody now cared much to read it. Preuss says it was finished, "the 10th August, 1739;" and that minute fact in Chronology, with the above tale of Hero-worship hanging to it, will suffice my readers and me.

But there is another literary project on hand, which did take effect;—much worthy of mention, this year; the whole world having risen into such a Chorus of TE DEUM at sight of it next year. In this year falls, what at any rate was a great event to Friedrich, as literary man: the printing of his first Book,—assiduous writing of it with an eye to print. The Book is that "celebrated ANTI-MACHIAVEL," ever-praiseworthy Refutation of Machiavel's PRINCE; concerning which there are such immensities of Voltaire Correspondence, now become, like the Book itself, inane to all readers. This was the chosen soul's employment of Friedrich, the flower of life to him, at Reinsberg, through the yea? 1739. It did not actually get to press till Spring 1740; nor actually come out till Autumn,—by which time a great change had occurred in Friedrich's title and circumstances: but we may as well say here what little is to be said of it for modern readers.

"The Crown-Prince, reading this bad Book of Machiavel's, years ago, had been struck, as all honest souls, especially governors or apprentices to governing, must be, if they thought of reading such a thing, with its badness, its falsity, detestability; and came by degrees, obliquely fishing out Voltaire's opinion as he went along, on the notion of refuting Machiavel; and did refute him, the best he could. Set down, namely, his own earnest contradiction to such ungrounded noxious doctrines; elaborating the same more and more into clear logical utterance; till it swelled into a little Volume; which, so excellent was it, so important to mankind, Voltaire and friends were clear for publishing. Published accordingly it was; goes through the press next Summer (1740), under Voltaire's anxious superintendence: [Here, gathered from Friedrich's Letters to Voltaire, is the Chronology of the little Enterprise:—1738, MARCH 21, JUNE 17, "Machiavel a baneful man," thinks Friedrich. "Ought to be refuted by somebody?" thinks he (date not known). 1739, MARCH 22, Friedrich thinks of doing it himself. Has done it, DECEMBER 4;—"a Book which ought to be printed," say Voltaire and the literary visitors. 1740, APRIL 26, Book given up to Voltaire for finished; Book appears, "end of SEPTEMBER," when a great change had occurred in Friedrich's title and position.] for the Prince has at length consented; and Voltaire hands the Manuscript, with mystery yet with hints, to a Dutch Bookseller, one Van Duren at the Hague, who is eager enough to print such an article. Voltaire himself—such his magnanimous friendship, especially if one have Dutch Lawsuits, or business of one's own, in those parts—takes charge of correcting; lodges himself in the 'Old Court' (Prussian Mansion, called VIEILLE COUR, at the Hague, where 'Luiscius,' figuratively speaking, may 'get an alms' from us); and therefrom corrects, alters; corresponds with the Prince and Van Duren, at a great rate. Keeps correcting, altering, till Van Duren thinks he is spoiling it for sale;—and privately determines to preserve the original Manuscript, and have an edition of that, with only such corrections as seem good to Van Duren. A treasonous step on this mule of a Bookseller's part, thinks Voltaire; but mulishly persisted in by the man. Endless correspondence, to right and left, ensues; intolerably wearisome to every reader. And, in fine, there came out, in Autumn next,"—the Crown-Prince no longer a Crown-Prince by that time, but shining conspicuous under Higher Title,—"not one ANTI-MACHIAVEL only, but a couple or a trio of ANTI-MACHIAVELS; as printed 'at the Hague;' as reprinted 'at London' or elsewhere; the confused Bibliography of which has now fallen very insignificant. First there was the Voltaire text, Authorized Edition, 'end of September, 1740;' then came, in few weeks, the Van Duren one; then, probably, a third, combining the two, the variations given as foot-notes:—in short, I know not how many editions, translations, printings and reprintings; all the world being much taken up with such a message from the upper regions, and eager to read it in any form.

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