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closed, in the midst of a rigorous winter, the mountains, had been transferred to the Aus. situation of Prussia appeared desperate. The trians. The Russians had overpowered the only consoling circumstance was, that, in the king's generals in Pomerania. The country West, Ferdinand of Brunswick bad been more was so completely desolated that he began, by fortunate than his master; and by a series of his own confession, to look round him with exploits, of which the battle of Minden was the blank despair, unable to imagine where remost glorious, had removed all apprehension cruits, horses, or provisions were to be found. of danger on the side of France.
Just at this time two great events brought The fifth year was now about to commence. on a complete change in the relations of al It seemed impossible that the Prussian terri- most all the powers of Europe. One of those tories, repeatedly devastated by hundreds of events was the retirement of Mr. Pitt from thousands of invaders, could longer support office; the other was the death of the Empress the contest. But the king carried on war as Elizabeth of Russia. no European power has ever carried on war, 'The retirement of Pitt seemed to be an omen except the Committee of Public Safety during of utier ruin to the House of Brandenburg. the great agony of the French Revolution. He His proud and vehement nature was incapable governed his kingdom as he would have go- of any thing that looked like either fear or verned a besieged town, not caring to what treachery. He had often declared that, while extent property was destroyed, or the pursuits he was in power, England should never make of civil life suspended, so that he did but make a peace of Utrecht;-should never, for any head against the enemy. As long as there was selfish object, abandon an ally even in the last a man left in Prussia, that man might carry extremity of distress. The continental war a musket-as long as there was a horse left, was his own war. He had been bold enough that horse might draw artillery. The coin was -he who in former times had attacked, with debased, the civil functionaries were left un- irresistible powers of oratory, the Hanoveriano paid; in some provinces civil government policy of Carteret, and the German subsidies altogether ceased to exist. But there were still of Newcastle-to declare that Hanover ough rye-bread and potatoes; there were still lead to be as dear to us as Hampshire, and that he and gunpowder; and, while the means of sus-would conquer America in Germany. He had taining and destroying life remained, Frederic fallen; and the power which he had exercisco, was determined to fight it out to the very last. not always with discretion, but always with
The earlier part of the campaign of 1760 vigour and genins, had devolved on a favour was unfavourable to him. Berlin was again ite who was the representative of the Tory occupied by the enemy. Great contributions party-of the party which had thwarted Wilwere levied on the inhabitants, and the royal liam, which had persecuted Marlborough, and palace was plondered. But at length, after which had given up the Catalans to the veniwo years of calamity, victory came back to geance of Philip of Anjou. To make peace his arms. At Lignitz he gained a great battle with France-to shake off with all, or more over Laudohn; at Torgau, after a day of hor- than all, the speed compatible with decency, rible carnage, he triumphed over Daun. The every Continental connection, these were among fifth year closed and still the event was in the chief objects of the new minister. The snspense. In the countries where the war had policy then followed inspired Frederic with raged, the misery and exhaustion were more an unjust, but deep and bitter aversion to the appalling than ever; bat still there were left English name; and produced effects which are men and beasts, arms and food, and still Fre- still felt throughout the civilized world. To deric fought on. In truth he had now been that policy it was owing that, ome years later, baited into savageness. His heart was ulce- England could not find on the whole Continent rated with hatred. The implacable resentment a single ally to stand by her, in her extreme with which his enemies persecured him, though need, against the House of Bourbon. To that originally provoked by his own unprincipled policy it was owing that Frederic, alienated ambition, excited in him a thirst for vengeance from England, was compelled to connect him. which he did not even attempt to conceal. "It self closely, during his later years, with Rus. is hard," he says in one of his letters, " for a sia; and was induced reluctantly to assist in man to bear what I bear. I begin to feel that, that great crime, the fruitful parent of other as the Italians say, revenge is a pleasure for great crimes--the first partition of Poland. the gods. My philosophy is worn out by suf Scarcely had the retreat of Mr. Pitt deprived fering: I am no saint, like those of whom we Prussia of her only friend, when the death of read in the legends; and I will own that I Elizabeth produced an entire revolution in the should die content if only I could first inflict a politics of the North. The Grand Duke Peter portion of the misery which I endure." her nephew, who now ascended the Russian
Borne up by such fzelings, he struggled with throne, was not merely free from the prejudices various success, but constant glory, through which his aunt had entertained against Frethe compaign of 1761. On the whole, the re- deric, but was a worshipper, a servile imitator, sult of this campaign was disastrous to Prus- a Boswell, of the great king. The days of the sia. No grear battle was gained by the enemy; new czar's government were few and evil, but but, in spite of the desperate bounds of the sufficient to produce a change in the whole state hunted tiger, the circle of pursuers was fast of Christendom. He set the Prussian prisoners closing round him. Laudohn had surprised at liberty, fitted them out decently, and sent the important fortress of Sweidnitz. With them back to their master; he withdrew his that fortress, half of Silesia, and the command troops from the provinces which Elizabeth had of the most important defiles through the decided on incorporating with her dominions,
and absolved all those Prussian subjects, who multitude saluted him with loud praises and had been compelled to swear fealty to Russia, blessings. He was moved ly those marks of from their engagements.
attachment, and repeatedly exclaimed—“Long Not content with concluding peace on terms live my dear people!-Long live my children !" favourable to Prussia, he solicited rank in the Yet, even in the midst of that gay spectacle, he Prussian service, dressed himself in a Prus- could not but perceive everywhere the traces sian uniform, wore the Black Eagle of Prus- of destruction and decay. The city had been sia on his breast, made preparations for visiting more than once plundered. The population Prussia, in order to have an interview with the had considerably diminished. Berlin, howobject of his idolatry, and actually sent fifteen ever, had suffered little when compared with thousand excellent troops to reinforce the most parts of the kingdom. The ruin of prie shattered army of Frederic. Thus strength-vate fortuneş, the distress of all ranks, was ened, the king speedily repaired the losses of such as might appal the firmest mind. Almost the preceding rear, reconquered Silesia, de- every province had been the seat of war, and feated Daun at Buckersdorf, invested and re- of war conducted with merciless ferocity. took Schweidnitz, and, at the close of the year, Clouds of Croatians had descended on Silesia. presented to the forces of Maria Theresa a Tens of thousands of Cossacks had been let. front as formidable as before the great reverses loose on Pomerania and Brandenburg. The of 1759. Before the end of the campaign, his mere contributions levied by the invaders friend the Emperor Peter having, by a series amounted, it was said, to more than a hundred of absurd insults to the institutions, manners, millions of dollars; and the value of what and feelings of his people, united them in hos- they extorted was probably much less than the tility to his person and governnient, was de- value of what they destroyed. The fields lay posed and murdered. The empress, who, uuder uncultivated. The very seed-corn had been the title of Catherine the Second, now assumed devoured in the madness of hunger. Famine, the supreme power, was, at the commence- and contagious maladies the effect of famine, ment of her administration, by no means par-had swept away the herds and flocks; and tial to Frederic, and refused to pernit her troops there was reason to fear that a great pestilence to rnain under his command. But she ob- among the human race was likely to follow in served the peace made by her husband; and the train of that tremendous war. Near fifPrussia was no longer threatened by danger teen thousand houses had been burned to the from the East.
ground. England and France at the same time paired The population of the kingdom had in seven off together. They concluded a treaty, by years decreased to the frightful extent of ten which they bound themselves to observe neu- per cent. A sixth of the males capable of trality with respect to the German war. Thus bearing arms had actually perished on the ne coalitions on both sides were dissolved; field of battle. In some districts, no labourers, and the original enemies, Austria and Prussia, except ivomen, were seen in the fields at harremained alone confronting each other. vest time. In others, the traveller passed shud
Austria had undoubtedly by far greater means dering through a succession of silent villages, than Prussia, and was less exhausted by hos- in which not a single inhabitant remained. tilities; yet it seemed hardly possible that The currency had been debased; the authority Austria could effect alone what she had in of laws and magistrates had been suspended; vain attempted to effect when supported by the whole social system was deranged. For, France on the one side, and by Russia on the during that convulsive struggle, every thing other. Danger also began to menace the im- that was not military violence was anarchy. perial house from another quarter. The Otto- Even the army was disorganized. Some great man Porte held threatening language, and a generals, and a crowd of excellent officers, had hundred thousand Turks were mustered on fallen, and it had been impossible to supply the frontiers of Hungary. The proud and re-their places. The difficulty of finding recruits vengeful spirit of the Empress-Queen at length had, towards the close of the war, been so gave way; and, in February, 1763, the peace great, that selection and rejection were impes. of Hubertsburg put an end to the conflict sible. Whole battalions were composed of dewhich had, during seven years, devasted Ger- serters or of prisoners. It was hardly to be many. The king ceded nothing. The whole hoped that thirty years of repose and industry Continent in arms had proved unable to tear would repair the ruin produced by seven years Silesia from that iron grasp.
of havoc. One consolatory circumstance, in'The war was over. Frederic was safe. His deed, there was. No debt had been incurred. glory was beyond the reach of envy. If he had 'The burdens of the war had been terrible, not inade conquests as vast as those of Alex- almost insupportable; but no arrear was ander, of Cæsar, and of Napoleon-if he had left to embarrass the finances in the time of not, on field of battle, enjoyed the constant peace. success of Marlborough and Wellington-he Here, for the present, we must pause. We had yet given an example unrivalled in history, have accompanied Frederic lo the close of his of what capacity and resolution can effect career as a warrior. Possibly, when these Meagainst the greatest superiority of power and moirs are completed, we may resume the conthe utmost spite of fortune. He entered Berlin sideration of his character, and give some acin triumph, after an absence of more than six count of his domestic and foreign policy, and years. The streets were brilliantly lighted up, of his private habits, during the many years of and as he passed along in an open carriage, tranquillity which followed the Seren Years' with Ferdinand of Brunswick at his side, the / War. VOL. IV.-67