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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.

Friedrich Wilhelm feels this sad contrast very much; the127 more, as the soldier is his own chattel withal, and of superlative inches. Friedrich Wilhelm flames up into wrath; sends off swift messengers to bring these judges, one and all, instantly into his presence. The judges are still in their dressing-gowns, shaving, breakfasting. They make what haste they can. So soon as the first three or four are reported to be in the anteroom, Friedrich Wilhelm, in extreme impatience, has them called in; starts discoursing with them upon the two weights and two measures. Apologies, subterfuges, do but provoke him farther. It is not long till he starts up growling terribly, Ye scoundrels, how could you? and smites down upon the crown of them with the royal cudgel itself. Fancy the hurry-scurry, the unforensic attitudes and pleadings! Royal cudgel rains blows right and left. Blood is drawn, crowns cracked, crowns nearly broken; and several judges lost a few teeth and had their noses battered before they could get out. The second relay, meeting them in this dilapidated state on the staircases, dashed home again without the honor of a royal interview. This is an actual scene, of date, Berlin, 1731, of which no constitutional country can hope to see the fellow. Schlubhut he hanged, Schlubhut being only Schlubhuts chattel. This musketeer, his majestys own chattel, he did not hang, but set him shouldering arms again after some preliminary dusting.

For several weeks the Austrians slowly and sullenly retired. Their retreat was conducted in two immense columns, by parallel roads at some distance from each other. Their wings of foragers and skirmishers were widely extended, so that the hungry army swept with desolation a breadth of country reaching out many leagues. Though the Austrian army was traversing the friendly territory of Bohemia, still Prince Charles was anxious to leave behind him no resources for Frederick to glean. Frederick, with his army, pressed along, following the wide-spread trail of his foes. The Austrians, with great skill, selected every commanding position on which to erect their batteries, and hurl back a storm of shot and shell into the bosoms of their pursuers. But Frederick allowed them no rest by day or by night. His solid columns so unremittingly and so impetuously pressed with shot, bullets, bayonet, and sabre-blows upon the rear ranks of the foe that there was almost an incessant battle, continuing for several weeks, crimsoning a path thirty miles wide and more than a hundred miles in length with the blood of the wounded and the slain. dd. Prussian Cavalry.

I have just finished a journey intermingled with singular adventures, sometimes pleasant, sometimes the reverse. You know I had set out for Baireuth to see a sister whom I love no less than esteem. On the road Algarotti and I consulted the map to settle our route for returning by Wesel. Frankfort-on-the-202Main comes always as a principal stage. Strasbourg was no great roundabout. We chose that route in preference. The incognito was decided, names pitched upon, story we were to tell. In fine, all was arranged as well as possible. We fancied we should get to Strasbourg in three days. With that answer! Sir Thomas replied, in tones of surprise. Is your majesty serious? Is that your majestys deliberate answer?

Never was there a place in the world where liberty of speech was so fully indulged, or where the various superstitions of men were treated with so much ridicule and contempt. God was respected. But those who, in His name, had imposed on mankind, were not spared. Neither women nor priests ever entered the palace. In a word, Frederick lived without a court, without a council, and without a religion.

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And you, sir, responded the king, with an air of great disdain, at the same time placing in his hand the cardinals letter, do you dare to talk to me in this manner?

Charles Albert, who took the title of the Emperor Charles VII., was the son of Maximilian, King of Bavaria, who was ruined at Blenheim, and who, being placed under the ban of the empire, lived for many years a pensioner upon the charity of Louis XIV. Charles was then but seven years of age, a prince by birth, yet homeless, friendless, and in poverty. With varying fortunes, he subsequently married a daughter of the Emperor Joseph. She was a cousin of Maria Theresa. Upon the death of his father in 1726, Charles Albert became King of Bavaria; but he was involved in debt beyond all hope of extrication. The intrigues of Frederick placed upon his wan and wasted brow the imperial crown of Germany. The coronation festivities took place at Frankfort, with great splendor, on the 12th of February, 1742.