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25th-28th Aug. 1769. mark, and at length coming close enough; but, at neither the one Interview nor the other, was Poland at all a party concerned,—though, beyond doubt, the Turk War was; silently this first time, and with clear vocality on the second occasion.
In spite of Galitzin's blunders, the Turk War is going on at a fine rate in these months; Turks, by the hundred thousand, getting scattered in panic rout:but we will say nothing of it just yet. Polish Confederation,-horror-struck, as may be imagined, at its auxiliary Brother of the Sun and Moon and his performances,—is weltering in violently impotent spasms into deeper and ever deeper wretchedness, Friedrich sometimes thinking of a Burlesque Poem on the subject;—though the Russian successes, and the Austrian grudgings and gloomings, are rising on him as a very serious consideration. "Is there no method, then, of allowing Russia to prosecute its Turk War in spite of Austria and its umbrages ?” thinks Friedrich sometimes, in his anxieties about Peace in Europe :-“If the Ukraine, and its meal for the Armies, were but Russia's! At present, Austria can strike in there, cut off the provisions, and at once put a spoke in Russia's wheel.” Friedrich tells us he (on,' the King himself, what I do not find in any other Book) sent to Peters'burg, under the name of Count Lynar, the seraphic * Danish Gentleman, who, in 1757, had brought about • the Convention of Kloster-Zeven, a Project, or Sketch
of Plan, for Partitioning certain Provinces of Poland, ' in that view;'—the Lynar opining, so far as I can see, somewhat as follows: “Russia to lay hold of the essential “ bit of Polish Territory for provisioning itself against " the Turk, and allow to Austria and Prussia certain
other bits; which would content everybody, and en
25th-28th Aug. 1769. able Russia and Christendom to extrude and suppress " ad libitum that abominable mass of Mahometan Sen" ,
sualism, Darkness and Fanaticism from the fairest part 6 of God's Creation.” An excellent Project, though not successful! To which Petersburg, intoxicated with its 6
own outlooks on Turkey, paid not the least attention,' says the King:10 He gives no date to this curious statement; nor does anybody else mention it at all; but we may fancy it to have been of Winter 1769-1770,and leave it with the curious, or the idly curious, since nothing came of it now or afterwards.
Potsdam, 20th-29th October 1769. Only two months after Neisse, what kindles Potsdam into sudden splendour, Electress Marie-Antoine makes a Visit of nine days to the King. “In * July last,' says a certain Note of ours, the Electress was invited to Berlin, to a Wedding; “would have been delighted to come, but letter of invitation arrived too late. Will, however, not give up the plan of seeing the great Friedrich.” Comes to Potsdam, 20th-29th October. Stays nine days; much delighted, 'both, with the visit. “Magnificent palaces, pleasant gardens,
ravishing concerts, charming Princes and Princesses: the pleasantest nine days I ever had in my life,” says the Electress. * Friedrich grants, to her intercession, pardon for some culprit. “ Diva Antonia,” he calls her henceforth for some time; she him, “Plus grand des mortels,” “ Salomon du Nord," and the like ' names.'"1 Next year, too (September 26th-October 5th, 1770), the bright Lady made a second visit ;!? no third,—the times growing too political, perhaps; the times not suiting. The Correspondence continues to the end; and is really pretty. And would be instructive withal, were it well edited. For example,– if we might look backwards, and shoot a momentary spark into the vacant darkness of the Past,-Friedrich wrote (the year before this):
Potsdam, 3d May 1768. * * “Jesuits have got all cut adrift: 10 Euvres de Frédéric, vi. 26. 11 Ibid. (Correspondance avec l'Electrice Marie-Antoine), xxiv. 179-186. 12 Rödenbeck, iii. 24.
25th-28th Aug. 1769. “ A dim rumour spreads that his Holiness will not rest with that “first anathema, but that a fulminating Bull is coming out against “ the Most Christian, the Most Catholic and the Most Faithful. “ If that be so, my notion is, Madam, that the Holy Father, to “ fill his table, will admit the Defender of the Faith” (poor George III.) “ and your Servant; for it does not suit a Pope to 6 sit solitary.”
“A pity for the human race, Madam, that men cannot be “ tranquil,—but they never and nowhere can! Not even the little 66 Town of Neufchâtel but has had its troubles; your Royal High
ness will be astonished to learn how. A Parson there” (this was above seven years ago, in old Marischal's reign13) “had set forth “ in a sermon, That considering the immense mercy of God, the “ pains of Hell could not last forever. The Synod shouted mur“ der at such scandal; and has been struggling, ever since, to get “the Parson exterminated. The affair was of my jurisdiction; “ for your Royal Highness must know that I am Pope in that “ Country ;-here is my decision: Let the parsons, who make for “ themselves a cruel and barbarous God, be eternally damned, as “ they desire, and deserve; and let those parsons, who conceive “ God gentle and merciful, enjoy the plenitude of his mercy! “ However, Madam, my sentence has failed to calm the minds ; “ the schism continues; and the number of the damnatory theo“ logians prevails over the others.”!!—Or again :
Potsdam, 1st December 1766. “At present I have with me my “ Niece” (Sister's Daughter, of Schwedt), “ the Duchess of Wür
temberg; who remembers with pleasure to have had the happiness of seeing your Royal Highness in former times. She is
very unhappy and much to be pitied; her Husband” (Eugen of Würtemberg, whom we heard much of, and last at Colberg)
gives her a deal of trouble: he is a violent man, from whom “ she has everything to fear; who gives her chagrins, and makes “ her no allowances. I try my best to bring him to reason;"—but am little successful. Three years after this, May 3d, 1769,' we
1 See Letters to Marischal, 'Leipzig, 9th March 1761,' Breslau, 14th May 1762 :' in Euvres de Frédéric, xx. 282, 287.
" • April 20, 1768' (a month before this Letter to Madam), there is riot at Neufchâtel; and Avocat Gardot' (heterodox Parson's Advocate) killed in it' (Rödenbeck, ii. 303).
3d-7th Sept. 1770. find Eugen, who once talked of running his august Reigning Brother through the body, has ended by returning to Stuttgard and him; where, or at Mümpelgard, his Apanage, he continued thenceforth. And was Reigning Duke himself, long afterwards, for two years, at the very end of his life.15 At this date of 1766, ‘my poor Niece and he' have been married thirteen years, and have half a score of children ;—the eldest of them Czar Paul's Second Wife that is to be, and Mother of the now Czars. December 17th, 1765.
“I have had 12,360 houses “ and barns to rebuild, and am nearly through with that. But “ how many other wounds remain yet to be healed !”
July 22d, 1765. “ Wedding festivities of Prince of Prussia. Duchess of Kingston tipsy on the occasion !"-But we must not be tempted farther. 16
Next Year, there is a Second Interview; Friedrich
making a Return-Visit during the Kaiser's Moravian Reviews (Camp of Mährisch-Neustadt, 3d-7th September 1770).
The Russian-Turk War, especially in this Second Campaign of it,—“ Liberation of Greece," or, failing that, total destruction of the Turk Fleet in Greek waters; conquest of Wallachia, as of Moldavia; in a word, imminency of total ruin to the Turk by land and sea, —all this is blazing aloft at such a pitch, in Summer 1770, that a new Interview upon
it to neighbours so much interested, seem more desirable than ever. Interview accordingly there is to be: 3d September, and for four days following.
Kaunitz himself attends, this time; something of real business privately probable to Kaunitz. Prince Henri is not there; Prince Henri is gone to Sweden;
15 "Succeeded,' on his Brother Karl's death, '20th May 1795 ; died, 232 December 1797, age 75.'
16 Euvres de Frédéric, xxiv. 90-155.
may well, 3d-7th Sept. 1770. on visit to his Sister, whom he has not seen since boyhood: of which Visit there will be farther mention. Present with the King were:17 the Prince of Prussia (luckier somewhat in his second wedlock, little redcoloured Son and Heir born to him just a month ago);18 Prince Ferdinand; two Brunswick Nephews, Erbprinz whom we used to hear of, and Leopold a junior, of whom we shall once or so. No Seidlitz this time. Except Lentulus, no General to name. But better for us than all Generals, in the Kaiser's suite, besides Kaunitz, was Prince de Ligne,—who holds a pen, as will appear.
"Liberation of the Greeks" had kindled many people, Voltaire among the number, who is still intermittently in correspondence with Friedrich : “A magnificent Czarina about to revivify that true Temple of Mankind, or at least to sweep the blockhead Turks out of it; what a prospect!" Friedrich is quite cool on Greece; not too hot on any part of this subject, though intensely concerned about it. Besides his ingenious Count-Lynar Project, and many other businesses, Friedrich has just been confuting Baron d'Holbach's Système de la Nature ;19 — writing to Voltaire, Potsdam, 18th August 1770, on this subject among others, he adds: “I am going for Silesia,
on the Reviews. I am to see the Kaiser, who has “ invited me to his Camp in Mähren. That is an amiable “ and meritorious Prince; he values your Works, reads " them as diligently as he can; is anything but super" stitious: in brief, a Kaiser such as Germany has not " for a great while had. Neither he nor I have any “ love for the blockhead and barbaric sort;—but that " is no reason for extirpating them: if it were, your
17 Rödenbeck, iii. 21.
19 • Examen Critique du Système de la Nature' (in Eurres de Frédéric, ix. 153 et seq.), ‘finished, July 1770.'