Avec de coursiers efflanqus,

My gentleman admitted this, and led the conversation on to the Dutch government. He criticised itprobably to bring me to speak. I did speak, and gave him frankly to know that he was not perfectly instructed in the thing he was criticising.

Fritz went in the royal carriage, with suitable escort, to meet the young marquis on the Prussian frontier, as he came to his bridals. They returned together in the carriage to Potsdam with great military display. The wedding took place on the 30th of May, 1729. It was very magnificent. Fritz was conspicuous on the occasion in a grand review of the giant grenadiers. Wilhelmina, in her journal, speaks quite contemptuously of her new brother-in-law, the Marquis of Anspach, describing him as a foolish young fellow. It was, indeed, a marriage of children. The bridegroom was a sickly, peevish, undeveloped boy of seventeen; and the bride was a self-willed and ungoverned little beauty of fifteen. The marriage proved a very unhappy one. There was no harmony between them. Frederick writes: They hate one another like the fire (comme le feu). They, however, lived together in incessant petty quarrelings for thirty years. Probably during all that time neither one of them saw a happy day.

While Frederick was involved in all these difficulties, he was cheered by the hope that the French would soon come to his rescue. Unutterable was his chagrin when he learned, early in October, that the French had done exactly as he would have done in their circumstances. Appalling, indeed, were the tidings soon brought to him, that Prince Charles, with his army, had marched unmolested into Bohemia; that he had already effected a junction with General Bathyani and his countless swarm of Pandours; and, moreover, that a Saxon army, twenty thousand strong, in alliance with the Queen of Hungary, was on the way to join his already overwhelming foes. It was reported, at the same time, that Prince Charles was advancing upon Budweis, and that his advance-guard had been seen, but a few miles off, on the western side of the Moldau. It would be easier for me to make peace with France than with Prussia. What good could possibly result now from peace with Prussia? I must have Silesia again. Without Silesia the imperial sceptre would be but a bauble. Would you have us sway that sceptre under the guardianship of Prussia? Prince Charles is now in a condition to fight the Prussians again. Until after another battle, do not speak to me of peace. You say that if we make peace with Prussia, Frederick will give his vote for the grand-duke as emperor. The grand-duke is not so ambitious of an empty honor as to engage in it under the tutelage of Prussia. Consider, moreover, is the imperial dignity consistent with the loss of Silesia? One more battle I demand. Were I compelled to agree with Frederick to-morrow, I would try him in a battle to-night.85

59 While the king was thus suffering the pangs of the gout, his irascibility vented itself upon his wife and children. We were obliged, says Wilhelmina, to appear at nine oclock in the morning in his room. We dined there, and did not dare to leave it even for a moment. Every day was passed by the king in invectives against my brother and myself. He no longer called me any thing but the English blackguard. My brother was named the rascal Fritz. He obliged us to eat and drink the things for which we had an aversion. Every day was marked by some sinister event. It was impossible to raise ones eyes without seeing some unhappy people tormented in one way or other. The kings restlessness did not allow him to remain in bed. He had himself placed in a chair on rollers, and was thus dragged all over the palace. His two arms rested upon crutches, which supported them. We always followed this triumphal car, like unhappy captives who are about to undergo their sentence.

You will beforehand inform the high mightinesses in regard to that Advice of April 24th, which they determined on giving me, through his excellency General Ginckel, along with his excellency Lord Hyndford, that such advice can be considered by me only as a blind complaisance to the court of Viennas improper urgencies. That for certain I will not quit Silesia till my claims be satisfied. And the longer I am forced to continue warring for them here, the higher they will rise.

The case is this: I am treated in an unheard of manner by the king; and I know that there are terrible things in preparation against me touching certain letters which I wrote last winter, of which I believe you are informed. In a word, to speak frankly to you, the real, secret reason why the king will not consent to this marriage is, that he wishes to keep me on a low footing85 constantly, and to have the power of driving me mad whenever the whim takes him, throughout his life. Thus he will never give his consent.

Frederick, finding that he could not rely upon the Saxons, sent to Silesia for re-enforcements of his own troops. Brünn could not be taken without siege artillery. He was capturing Moravia for the King of Poland. Frederick dispatched a courier to his Polish majesty at Dresden, requesting him immediately to forward the siege guns. The reply of the king, who was voluptuously lounging in his palaces, was, I can not meet the expense of the carriage. Frederick contemptuously remarked, He has just purchased a green diamond which would have carried them thither and back again. The Prussian king sent for siege artillery of his own, drew his lines close around Brünn, and urged Chevalier De Saxe, general of the Saxon horse, to co-operate with him energetically in battering the city into a surrender.305 The chevalier interposed one obstacle, and another, and another. At last he replied, showing his dispatches, I have orders to retire from this business altogether, and join the French at Prague.

A transient smile flitted across the kings countenance. Then, looking cold again, he added, Follow your own will in that.

Archenholtz describes it as a thing surpassable only by doomsday; clangorous rage of noise risen to the infinite; the boughs of the trees raining down upon you with horrid crash; the forest, with its echoes, bellowing far and near, and reverberating in universal death-peal, comparable to the trump of doom.157

Nearly all of Silesia was again in the hands of Frederick. He seems to have paid no regard to the ordinary principles of honor in the accomplishment of his plans. Indeed, he seems to have had no delicate perceptions of right and wrong, no instinctive appreciation of what was honorable or dishonorable in human conduct. He coined adulterated money, which he compelled the people to take, but which he refused to receive in taxes. In his Military Instructions, drawn up by his own hand, he writes: