A few months after, in May, 1750, there was a grand review at Berlin. An Austrian officer who chanced to be there was invited by his friend, a Prussian officer, Lieutenant Colonel Chasot, to attend. The Austrian was not willing to ride upon the parade-ground without the permission of the king. Colonel Chasot called upon Frederick and informed him that an Austrian officer would be happy, with his majestys permission, to be present at the review.

This letter was addressed to the reverend, well-beloved, and faithful Müller, and was signed your affectionate king. Though the king had not yet announced any intention of sparing the life of his son, and probably was fully resolved upon his execution, he was manifestly disturbed by the outcry against his proceedings raised in all the courts of Europe. Three days before the king wrote the above letter, the Emperor of Germany, Charles VI., had written to him, with his own hand, earnestly interceding for the Crown Prince. In addition to the letter, the emperor, through his minister Seckendorf, had presented a very firm remonstrance. He announced to Frederick William that112 Prince Frederick was a prince of the empire, and that he was entitled to the protection of the laws of the Germanic body; that the heir-apparent of the Prussian monarchy was under the safeguard of the Germanic empire, and that the king was bound to surrender to this tribunal the accused, and the documents relative to this trial.

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.

On the 10th of December, 1729, Dubourgay writes in his journal:70 His Prussian majesty can not bear the sight of either the prince or the princess royal. The other day he asked the prince, Kalkstein makes you English, does not he? To which the prince answered, I respect the English, because I know the people there love me. Upon which the king seized him by the collar, struck him fiercely with his cane, and it was only by superior strength that the poor prince escaped worse. There is a general apprehension of something tragical taking place before long.

Frederick remained at Bunzelwitz a fortnight after the retreat of the Russians. In the mean time the French and English were fighting each other with varying success upon the banks of the Rhine. It is not necessary to enter into the details of their struggles. Fredericks magazines at Schweidnitz were getting low. On the 26th of September he broke up his camp at Bunzelwitz, and in a three days march to the southeast reached Neisse. The Austrians did not venture to annoy him. Frederick had scarcely reached Neisse when he learned, to his amazement and horror, that General Loudon, with a panther-like spring, had captured Schweidnitz, with its garrison and all its supplies. It was a terrible blow to the king. The Austrians could now winter in Silesia. The anguish of Frederick must have been great. But he gave no utterance to his gloomy forebodings. 563 The king seemed to think it effeminate and a disgrace to him as a soldier ever to appear in a carriage. He never drove, but constantly rode from Berlin to Potsdam. In the winter of 1785, when he was quite feeble, he wished to go from Sans Souci, which was exposed to bleak winds, and where they had only hearth fires, to more comfortable winter quarters in the new palace. The weather was stormy. After waiting a few days for such a change as would enable him to go on horseback, and the cold and wind increasing, he was taken over in a sedan-chair in the night, when no one could see him.

Our anger the said Baron P?llnitz never kindled but once.74326 But as the loveliest countries have their barren spots, the most beautiful forms their imperfections, pictures by the greatest masters their faults, we are willing to cover with the veil of oblivion those of the said baron. We do hereby grant him, with regret, the leave of absence he requires, and abolish his office altogether, that it may be blotted from the memory of man, not judging that any one, after the said baron, can be worthy to fill it.

Several well-authenticated anecdotes are given respecting the conduct of Frederick on this occasion, which illustrate the various phases in the character of this extraordinary man. The evening before the battle of Zorndorf, the king, having completed his arrangements for a conflict against vastly unequal numbers, upon whose issue were dependent probably both his throne and his life, sent for a member of his staff of some literary pretensions, and spent some time in criticising and amending one of the poems of Rousseau. Was this an affected display of calmness, the result of vanity? Was it an adroit measure to impress the officers with a conviction of his own sense of security? Was it an effort to throw off the terrible pressure which was upon his mind, as the noble Abraham Lincoln often found it to be a moral necessity to indulge in a jest even amidst scenes of the greatest anguish? Whatever may have been the motive, the fact is worthy of record.