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SIXTH CAMPAIGN OPENS : CAMP OF BUNZELWITZ.
To the outward observer, Friedrich stands well at present, and seems again in formidable posture. After two such Victories, and such almost miraculous recovery of himself, who shall say what resistance he will not yet make? In comparison with 1759 and its failures and disasters, what a Year has 1760 been! Liegnitz and Torgau, instead of Kunersdorf and Maxen, here are unexpected phenomena; here is a King risen from the deeps again,—more incalculable than ever to contemporary mankind. “How these things will end ?” Fancy of what a palpitating interest then, while everybody watched the huge game as it went on; though it is so little interesting now to anybody, looking at it all finished! Finished; no mystery of chance, of worldhope or of world-terror now remaining in it; all is fallen stagnant, dull, distant;—and it will behove us
to be brief upon it.
Contemporaries, and Posterity that will make study, must alike admit that, among the sons of men, few in any Age have made a stiffer fight than Friedrich has done and continues to do. But to Friedrich himself it is dismally evident, that year by year his resources are melting away; that a year must come when he will have no resource more. Ebbing very fast, his resources; -fast too, no doubt, those of his Enemies, but not so
25th April—19th Aug. 1761. fast. They are mighty Nations, he is one small Nation. His thoughts, we perceive, have always, in the background of them, a hue of settled black. Easy to say, “Resist till we die;" but to go about, year after year, practically doing it, under cloudy omens, no end of it visible ahead, is not easy. Many men, Kings and other, have had to take that stern posture;few on sterner terms than those of Friedrich at present; and none that I know of with a more truly stoical and manful figure of demeanour. He is long used to it! Wet to the bone, you do not regard new showers; the one thing is, reach the bridge before it be swum away.
The usual hopes, about Turks, about Peace, and the like, have not been wanting to Friedrich this Winter; mentionable as a trait of Friedrich's character, not otherwise worth mention. Hope of aid from the Turks, it is very strange to see how he nurses this fond shadow, which never came to anything! Happily, it does not prevent, it rather encourages, the utmost urgency of preparation : “ The readier we are, the likelier are Turks and everything!” Peace, at least between France and England, after such a Proposal on Choiseul's part, and such a pass as France is really got to, was a reasonable probability. But indeed, from the first year of this War, as we remarked, Peace has seemed possible to Friedrich every year; especially from 1759 onward, there is always every winter a lively hope of Peace :“ No slackening of preparation; the reverse, rather; but surely the Campaign of next Summer will be cut short, and we shall all get home only half expended !"'1
Practically, Friedrich has been raising new FreeCorps people, been recruiting, refitting, and equipping, with more diligence than ever; and, in spite of the al
Schöning (in locis).
25th April-19th Aug. 1761. most impossibilities, has two Armies on foot, some 96,000 men in all, for defence of Saxony and of Silesia, -Henri to undertake Saxony, versus Daun; Silesia, with Loudon and the Russians, to be Friedrich's heavier share. The Campaign, of which, by the one party and the other, very great things had been hoped and feared, seemed once as if it would begin two months earlier than usual; but was staved off, a long time, by Friedrich's dexterities, and otherwise; and in effect did not begin, what we can call beginning, till two months later than usual. Essentially it fell, almost all, to Friedrich's share; and turned out as little decisive on him as any of its foregoers. The one memorable part of it now is, Friedrich's Encampment at Bunzelwitz; which did not occur till four months after Friedrich's appearance on the field. And from the end of April, when Loudon made his first attempt, till the end of August, when Friedrich took that Camp, there was nothing but a series of attempts, all ineffectual, of demonstrations, marchings, maneuverings, and small events; which, in the name of every reader, demand condensation to the utmost. If readers will be diligent, here, so far as needful, are the prefatory steps.
Since Fouquet's disaster, Goltz generally has Silesia in charge; and does it better than expected. He was never thought to have Fouquet's talent in him; but he shows a rugged loyalty of mind, less egoistic than the fiery Fouquet's; and honestly flings himself upon
his task, in a way pleasant to look at: pleasant to the King especially, who recognises in Goltz a useful, brave, frank soul;-and has given him, this Spring, the Order of Merit, which was a high encouragement to Goltz. In Silesia, after Kosel last Year, there had been truce between Goltz and Loudon; which should have pro25th April—19th Aug. 1761. duced repose to both; but did not altogether, owing to mistakes that rose. And at any rate, in the end of April, Loudon, bursting suddenly into Silesia with great increase to the forces already there, gave notice, as per bargain, That “in 96 hours” the Truce would expire. And waiting punctiliously till the last of said hours was run out, Loudon fell upon Goltz (April 25th, in the Schweidnitz-Landshut Country), with his usual vehemence;---meaning to get hold of the Silesian Passes, and extinguish Goltz (only 10 or 12,000 against 30,000), as he had done Fouquet last Year.
But Goltz took his measures better ; seized the Gallows-Hill of Hohenfriedberg,' seized this and that; and stood in so forcible an attitude, that Loudon, carefully considering, durst not risk an assault; and the only result was: Friedrich hastened to relief of Goltz (rose from Meissen Country, May 3d), and appeared in Silesia six weeks earlier than he had intended. But again took Cantonments there (Schweidnitz and neighbourhood);—Loudon retiring wholly, on first tidings of him, home to Bohemia again. Home in Bohemia; at Braunau, on the western edge of the Glatz Mountains, —there sits Loudon thenceforth, silent for a long time; silently collecting an Army of 72,000, with strict orders from Vienna to avoid fighting till the Russians come. Loudon has very high intentions this Year. Intends to finish Silesia altogether;—cannot he, after such a beginning upon Glatz last year? That is the firm notion at Vienna among men of understanding: ever-active Loudon the favourite there, against a Cunctator who has been too cunctatory many times. Liegnitz itself, was not that (as many opine) a disaster due to cunctation, not of Loudon's ?
Loudon is to be joined by 60,000 Russians, under a 30 May 1761. Feldmarschall Butturlin, not under sulky Soltikof, this Year; junction to be in Upper Silesia, in Neisse neighbourhood. “We take that Fortress,” say the Vienna people; “it is next on the file after Glatz. Neisse taken; thence northward, cleaning the Country as we go: Brieg, Schweidnitz, Glogau, probably Breslau itself in some good interim: there are but Four Fortresses to do; and the thing is finished. Let the King, one to three, and Loudon in command against him, try if he can hinder it!" This is the Program in Vienna and in Petersburg. And, accordingly, the Russians have got on march about the end of May; plodding on ever since, due hereabouts before June end: "junction to be as near Neisse as you can: and no fighting of the King, on any terms, till the Russians come.” Never were the Vienna people so certain before. Daun is to do nothing “rash” in Saxony (a Daun not given that way, they can calculate), but is to guard Loudon's game; carefully to reinforce, comfort, and protect the brave Loudon and his Russians till they win ;-after which, Saxony as rash as you like. This is the Program of the Season :-readers feel what an immensity of preliminary higglings, hitchings and maneuverings will now demand to be suppressed by us! Read these essential Fractions, chiefly chronological;and then, at once, To Bunzelwitz, and the time of close grips in Silesia here.
‘Last Year,' says a loose Note, which we may as well take with us, "Tottleben did not go home with the rest, but kept “ hovering about, in eastern Pommern, with a 10,000, all Winter; • attempting several kinds of mischief in those Countries, especially attempting to do something on Colberg; which the Rus
sians mean to besiege next Summer, with more intensity than ever, for the Third, and, if possible, the last time.
“ Storm “ their outposts there,” thinks Tottleben, “especially Belgard,