严高鸿:模范理论工作者

Berlin, 1st of March, 1743. 333 Such a swarm of hornets as darkens the very daylight! writes Carlyle. Vain to scourge them down, to burn them off by blaze of gunpowder; they fly fast, but are straightway back again. They lurk in these bushy wildernesses, scraggy woods; no foraging possible unless whole regiments are sent out to do it; you can not get a letter safely carried for them.

I answered that my regard for him had never been of an interested nature; that I would never ask any thing of him but the continuance of his friendship; and that I did not wish for one penny if it would in the least inconvenience him.

It is curious how old peoples habits agree. For four years past I have given up suppers as incompatible with the trade I am obliged to follow. On marching days my dinner consists of a cup of chocolate. They reached Milkau Tuesday night, the 20th. Here they were allowed one day of rest, and Frederick gave each soldier a gratuity of about fifteen cents. On Thursday the march was resumed, and the advance-guard of the army was rapidly gathered around Glogau, behind whose walls Count Wallis had posted his intrepid little garrison of a thousand men. Here Frederick encountered his first opposition. The works were found too strong to be carried by immediate assault, and Frederick had not yet brought forward his siege cannon. The following extracts from the correspondence which Frederick carried on at226 this time develop the state of public sentiment, and the views and character of the king. His friend Jordan, who had been left in Berlin, wrote to him as follows, under date of December 14, 1740, the day after the king left to place himself at the head of his army:

Upon reaching the neighborhood of Landshut, the king was surrounded by a troop of two thousand Protestant peasants. They begged permission of him to massacre the Catholics of those parts, and clear the country of them altogether. This animosity arose from the persecutions which the Protestants had suffered during the Austrian domination.

This, however, stirred up great strife in Poland. The nobles were roused. Scenes of confusion ensued. The realm was plunged into a state of anarchy. Frederick, being in cordial co-operation with the czarina in all her measures, instructed his minister in Warsaw to follow her policy in every particular. It has generally been supposed that Frederick was the first to propose the banditti division of the kingdom of Poland between Prussia, Russia, and Austria by means of their united armies. This is not certain. But, whoever may have at first made the suggestion, it is very certain that Frederick cordially and efficiently embarked in the enterprise.178

We arrived at Berlin the end of October. My younger brothers, followed by the princes of the blood and by all the court, received us at the bottom of the stairs. I was led to my apartment, where I found the reigning queen, my sisters, and the princesses. I learned, with much chagrin, that the king was ill of tertian ague. He sent me word that, being in his fit, he could not see me, but that he depended on having that pleasure to-morrow. The queen-mother, to whom I went without delay, was in a dark condition. Her rooms were all hung in their lugubrious drapery. Every thing was as yet in the depth of mourning for my father. What a scene for me! Nature has her rights. I can say with truth I have almost never in my life been so moved as on this occasion. My interview with my mother was very touching.

This way! storm the others with hot tears; Adjutant Von Platen takes the flag: Platen too is instantly shot; but another takes it. This way, on! in wild storm of rage and grief; in a word, they managed to do the work at Sterbohol, they and the rest. First line, second line, infantry, cavalry (and even the very horses, I suppose), fighting inexpressibly; conquering one of the worst problems ever seen in war. For the Austrians too, especially their grenadiers there, stood to it toughly, and fought like men; and every grenadier that survived of them, as I read afterward, got double pay for life.

Count Von Kaunitz, an able but proud and self-conceited man, was prime minister of the Emperor of Germany. His commanding mind exerted quite a controlling influence over his imperial master. Kaunitz records the following conversation as having taken place at this interview between himself and Frederick:182