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crated by the insulting conqueror. I experi- time till his deathbed, the same feeling
an inspiration. It was the ruling notion
“ Napoleon's return from Egypt took place the apostle of German nationality; but, if within a few days of my departure from Paris. his mission was glorious for its patriotism, I had watched that great ambitious figure of the it was not the less an apostolate of hatred. time in his rise and progress; I had followed all No doubt the provocation he had endured his intrigues, his victories, his proclamations, excessive and intolerable. The his conquests; I know not whether I had rightly French exercised the powers understood him, but after the battle of Marengo not call them rights — of conquest over
we will I learned to shudder before that figure then so idolized by so many and so mighty men; and Germany with an unsparing hand; and that shuddering was but an unconscious premo- no curse was ever laid on Europe more nition of the ten years' woe which was to come.
bitter than the savage and selfish tyranny But my utter wrath - - a wrath that at the of the armies and the men born of the thought of the degradation of Germany and French Revolution of 1793. Europe and Europe often became a very frenzy this was Prussia had their revenge in 1814 and 1815, awakened by the peace of Luneville, and the and it was a just one. But we were not disgraceful stipulations, the underhand bar, prepared, after half a century of peace gainings by means of which Talleyrand and and firesidely intercourse, for a fresh outMaret stripped and portioned out the divisions break of those vindictive passions, stamped and the destinies of the Fatherland. The events with all their original intensity; and we of 1805 and 1806 tore away the last supports can regard with no friendly or indulgent on which anything truly German could any longer lean; the worst was come; the least and eye those who have kept alive these sentithe greatest, the unknown and the famous, all ments in the hearts of a people, and have that made Germany, lay in one common mass dug up the war-hatchet, after an interval of desolation, and the Gallic cock crowed his of fifty or sixty years, with the ferocity victorious note over the ruins of her desecrated of a savage tribe. France entered with glory. The day was come for all individual most culpable levity into the war which feelings, all opinions, all prejudices, all passions, has just devastated so many of her fairest all preferences, to sink together in one common provinces, under the impression that she crash. It was when Prussia and Austria, both was seeking a passage of arms, of no after unavailing struggles, lay prostrate in the very dreadful import or long duration. dust, it was then that my heart began to love She instantly encountered a nation arraed them, and to love Germany, with a real love, at every point, animated by the deadliest and to hate the French with a true and holy hostility, and bent on her total destruchate. It was not Napoleon only — not the crafty, calculating, taunting Corsican, born in
tion. Whatever may be the political view the land where the very honey is a poison, not taken of the war, it is impossible to deny the man whom liars afterwards were ready to that the existence of intense national hamake the great scapegoat for all the just wrath treds is a dreadful calamity, and the cause of Europe,- it was not him I hated most; of all other calamities, for it acts and rewas the French themselves — the deceitful, acts incessantly. The greatest indication proud, ambitious French, the crafty, treacher- of progress that we can trace in our own ous enemies of Germany through centuries gone country is that we appear to have outby; it was these I hated in the very fulness of grown these feelings. The English enterwrath, as in that very fulness of wrath I recog- tain at this time no national hostilities at nized my Fatherland, and loved it in a passion all, and hardly condescend to notice the of love. All that was merely Swedish died out hostilities occasionally expressed against from me; the very hero-names of Sweden be
themselves. Our national songs are songs came for me but the echoes of the bygone time; and just when, through its divisions, Germany of loyalty and of independence, but not had no longer an existence, my heart embraced of hatred. But it is not so in Germany the notion of its oneness and its unity."
or in France. There all the sentimental
and imaginative powers of the nation have Be it said, in passing, that from that been wrought upon by their poets, by
their statesmen, by their leaders, until a The year 1804 he spent for the most contest between these nations appears to part in Sweden, still zealously continuing each of them to be a contest against the his studies of nationality, and publishing Powers of Evil, and no sacrifices are too his experiences there as he had done those great to procure the defeat and humilia- gathered in his other travels. Some tion of their foe. To the propagation of smaller works, mainly political in their this irrational and sanguinary passion purpose, date from the same period. But Arndt and his imitators have not a little it was the news of the disasters of Ulm contributed. They have responded but and Austerlitz which evoked the first part too faithfully to the sanguinary chorus of of the passionate work, “ The Spirit of the the “ Marseillaise."
Age," by which he at once asserted the But we must return from this digres- power of his vigorous patriotism over the sion, which has been wrung from us by German mind. It was not as a savant, as the present lamentable dissensions of Eu- an original thinker, as a profound statesrope, to the career of Arndt himself, which man, that he came before his fellow-men. now assumed a more serious character. To have appealed in such a character
His first political work appeared some-would have been to address a limited where about 1803, after his name had be- audience indeed, and what he had to come extensively known by the several say was meant for all. It was as volumes in which he had just published honest, simple, unpretending citizen, as a the notes of his journeyings in various believing Christian man, as one who delands. The special point of politics on plored the corruptions and felt the miswhich he entered concerned what was then eries and scorned the despairing fatalism to him in some sort a home question. of the time, that he spoke to the nation, His work was entitled “ History of Serf- and struck the chord of faith and hope dom in Pomerania and Rügen,” and, ex- and patriotism which has never ceased posing, as it did, the cruel tyranny exer- since then to tremble in the German soul, cised in too many cases, up to the very and which now, after a lapse of threescore time of his writing, by the nobles against years, seems at last to be swelling mightily their dependents, drew down upon him to its grandest and fullest vibration. Like the enmity of the ruling class, the dis- all the mightiest things he wrote, whether pleasure of the King (of Sweden), and a in prose or verse, his book, as he says himthreat of criminal prosecution. His ac- self, was “ forged upon the glowing anvil count is entertaining :
of the hour;” out of the abundance of a “The book was shown to the King, his in-generous heart, stirred by the terrible formant having marked with a red pencil many necessity of the time, his mouth was passages in which I was supposed to have been forced to speak. Indeed almost literally too free in censuring acts of some of his distant to speak, for his book is far more an oraancestors upon the throne. The King, in the tion than a composition; and none who first storm of his displeasure, sent the book, 80 ever knew the man, in reading such a marked, to General von Essen, the chancellor work, could fail to fancy, as sentence folof my university (to whom I had dedicated my lows sentence and follows
page work), requiring him to call the audacious au- they could hear the utterance Howing
page, thor to account and, if needful, to proceed ju- from his lips. But the book was no mere dicially against him. General von Essen summoned me to Stralsund, gave me a hint of who rhapsody, though even that might have my accusers were, and asked me how I meant been permitted, might even have been to extricate myself from the difficulty I was profitable, at the time. Starting from a placed in, as the King seemed seriously dis- common-sense view of the intellectual pleased. I took the book and underlined with condition of the period, he portrays the my pencil a number of passages showing beyond spirit of the age as it then was, and proves all question the great cruelty and injustice still the truth of his portraiture by the writprevailing, and begged the general to point out ings as well as by the actions of his conthese passages to the King. He did so, and the temporaries. King replied: “ In that case the man is right
He contrasts the past state of naenough;” and so I returned to Griefswald none tions as history displays them with their the worse.”
state as he had learned to judge them Arndt modestly adds in a "perhaps, by his personal experience, and, gradwhat is an unquestionable fact, that his ually passing in review the moral weakbook contributed towards the abolition ness and the political profligacy of Gerof serfdom a few years afterwards by many, breaks out at length into a cry the same king of Sweden Gustave of bitter lamentation over the terrors and Adolf IV.
the miseries of the time; accusing and admonishing those on whom he shows the catastrophe of Jena in the year 1806 gave blame to rest. From page to page, as the France the upper hand in Germany. work proceeds, the accusations become Obliged to fly across the seas, he found an more definite and pungent, the admoni- asylum at Stockholm, where, while occutions more impressive and striking. At pied in one of the Government offices, he one time he scourges, with incisive plain- still laboured constantly for the cause he ness of speech, the princes who, coquet- had made his own. At intervals during ting and intriguing, with the foreigner, the next two years he published the varicould in such unprincely fashion betray ous portions of the second part of his their dignity, their duty, and their people; “ Geist der Zeit.” But the thundercloud at another it is the nobles in whose teeth of the year 1809 spread over Sweden too, he flings the shame of such unchivalrous and in its fury swept away the very throne forgetfulness as could let them wear the itself. cross of the Legion of Honour, accepted Though left unmolested, Arndt felt the at the Gallic despot's hands, as a reward very soil burn under his feet; and, as may for their shedding of their fellow-Germans' be imagined, the struggles of the year blood. Again, with a sort of awe which 1809 on the Danube, in the Tyrol, aye, can scarce help shuddering before the even the gallant Schill's fatal enterprise, mighty force of the man's nature, he de- and his death at Stralsund, made it impospicts “the Corsican upstart” himself. In sible for Arndt to remain where he was. him he recognizes, so to speak, the very In spite of the peril he incurred, he made incarnation of the “spirit of the time; his way homewards in disguise, through and then, turning again to consider the many difficulties and obstructions, travelage itself which produced such a man as ling chiefly by night from place to place, Napoleon, his utterances, like his feelings, here and there when necessary disarming oscillate violently between the anguish of suspicion by simple audacity, and coming despair and the awakening of hope. at last, under a feigned name and charac“ Now,” he exclaims, “we are suffering ter, to his brother's house, from whence for our sins of ten years ago, and of five the ferment of the time brought him to years ago; the chariot-wheels of desola- Berlin. tion are rolling further and further, and how and where shall they be stayed?” of the public entry of the King and Queen. I
“I arrived just before Christmas, on the day “ Never,” he replies, “till some equally
saw the procession and the rejoicings (such as tremendous power be found to oppose
they were); all hearts then were united in one Never, in fact, till all the German race common German spirit through those misforcould feel as he himself could. Fortunes, in the blame of which each man felt conArndt's last utterance is like his first in scious of having a part to bear. Berlin, once 80 this. He proclaims the faith of believing proud and glorious, lay in dust and ashes. . hope as opposed to the promptings of a I went out from my place of concealment and fatalistic resignation. He calls upon each mingled in the crowd, who with shouting and living individual man to rouse from the weeping filled the Lindon and the Schloss-platz. mechanical condition to which “ the spirit ! speak of those who wept among others who reof the age” had degraded him, to his joiced, for more eyes were wet with sorrow proper sense of freedom, virtue, and pa- Queen presented herself before the people in the
than were bright with joy. When the lovely triotism. “ If,” he says, “ each of you can feel your own heart honest, your country reddened eyes how deep an anguish mingled
balcony of the palace, we could see in her tearworthy, your laws holy, your Fatherland with the gladness of her welcome. I looked for imperishable, and your princes noble
Scharnhorst,* and saw him ride slowly past then have no fear, for so the world is saved. with the other generals, pale and preoccupied, For every hundred such as you are worth and bending sadly forward in his saddle." a host of other men.”
It was not, however, as a mere rhetori- Though he gives few details of his life cian that Arndt took his part so heartily in Berlin, beyond mentioning that, despite with the race of his loption. When his the multitude of spies, both French and “Spirit of the Age” appeared he was ly- | German, busily occupied there, he coning dangerously ill at Stralsund, shot trived to associate with a circle of men through the body in a duel with a Swedish like-minded with himself, and to practise officer whom he had called to account for assiduously, as they did, in rifle and pistol language reflecting upon the people of galleries, in the hope of one day turning Germany. Nor was this all he suffered in
* See in the Poems the two pieces “ Der Wafthe cause. Just in proportion as his influ
fenschmidt der Deutschen Freiheit,” p. 249, and ence was great, so was his peril when the “ Scharnhorst der Ehrenbote," p. 252.
the skill they thus acquired to the profit, useful and important duties, that he should of their country, he unquestionably did in some sort remake his character, when much towards awakening and spreading already he had reached middle life, and the spirit of resistance to that power of resume his professorial duties to remove Napoleon which only too many Germans suspicions which no doubt were readily were disposed to regard as irresistible. heaped upon him by those enemies of his In the Easter of the following year, 1810 country against whom he had been so out(its former Pomeranian territory having spoken, and from whom, day by day, he been restored to Sweden), Arndt returned went in danger of his life. to his professorial chair at the University The views which Germany held in those of Greifswald, General von Essen, the years of terrible abasement were by no Governor, receiving him as if he had spent means as high and as unanimous as those in England the whole time from his leav- it holds now. Had they been so, Arndt ing Stockholm.
would not have been what he was, or have But it was not with the purpose of re- done what he did. His was au utterance, maining there permanently that he resumed not a mere reverberation. German unity his professorship. The man's heart was is the one cry heard to-day; but it was one too deeply engaged in the salvation of his among very many when the modest simplecountry to allow selfish ease or secure po-minded Arndt threw his whole soul into sition to tempt him from what he had un- the task of sounding it in the ears of his dertaken as an irresistible duty. Of compatriots, and even among many who course, though he does not say so, he was had been his friends at Greifswald, his a conspirator. He held too firmly the views met little sympathy. Several of the hopes which he so ardently instilled into thrones of Germany were filled by French others not to be ready to stake his all on nominees ; hundreds of Germans, and any reasonable effort to deliver Germany amongst them men as distinguished as from its slavery. He recognized too fully John Müller the historian, had willingly what he preached so clearly, that the only accepted office under their conquerors; the prospect of general salvation lay in individ- Confederation of the Rhine recognized ual self-sacrifice, to place himself in any Napoleon as its Protector; and multitudes situation which might silence his voice or of German troops were serving in or with hamper his hand when the great time the French armies. No wonder, then, that should come. He went back to his post, Arndt took an early opportunity of setting as he tells us in touching words,
himself free from all official trammels, as “ With neither the desire nor the hope of re
we have seen. taining it long. Who could at that time calcu- Warned by some loyal friends of the late on anything remaining a year or two secure watchfulness of the French spies, and the or unchanged? But two objects were essential partial discovery of the German secret soto me; first, make myself a position in an hon-cieties, he hastened to Berlin, where he ourable and irreproachable civil capacity, and procured a passport for Russia (in which secondly, to settle my family affairs. Both of country, as he says "there was still a Euthese objects I had secured by the summer of rope"), providing himself with another the following year (1811), and then sent in my passport for the Bohemian baths, to be resignation, packed up my books, papers, and used in case of need. He was scarcely possessions, and betook myself
to my old home back a day in Trantow when the alarm must fly, or to journey, if my country wanted came; but we will give in his own words me.' (Erinnerungen, p. 114.)
the narrative of his escape from Swedish
into Prussian territory : We have called these touching words, for the sentence we have underlined im- “ A number of us were assembled in a joyous plies more than it says; it implies that party at the house of the Provost of Loitz, when this true self-sacrificing patriot felt him- a mounted messenger brought me a line from self more or less at a disadvantage from my friend Billroth in Greifswald stating that the very conditions of life which had pre- have the whole country occupied within a day
the French had crossed the fruntier, and would pared him to be most useful to his coun
We all separated at once. I drove try; that, in fact, at times he felt for him that very night to Stralsund, which as yet the self, and possibly at times was made by French had not renched, obtained some money, others to feel, that his wandering and ap- slept the next night at a friend's house, starting parently unsteady course in life was a early the following morning by sledge, and, wrong and a discredit. It became then a passing on my way several detachments of part of his purpose, an essential to qualify French cavalry, got by sunset to Greifswald, him, even in the eyes of his own party, for which I found full of french troops. I bid á few farewells there, and, avoiding the high found; and the unexpected call to coroads, made my way across country to a spot operate with one so great as Von Stein where a sledge of my brother's met me, and found him every way prepared :brought me back to Trantow that night.
“ Arrived at the house I slipped in by a back “ If any ask from what sources I as a pilgrim door and reached a side room from whence, in and fugitive could be possessed of means and case of alarm, I could easily escape into the nuoney, I reply: as a boy my heart was filled by thickly-planted shrubberies and so make my God with a presentiment of my destiny; from flight good to the woods. A number of French horror of self-indulgence and luxury I early troops, both officers and privates, were billeted grew hardy and self-reliant, and learned how to in the house; but my brother plied them well be needy as well as how to abound. And this with liquor, they were weary and exhausted system I had persisted in even beyond my fortiwith long marching over ice and snow, and eth year, disciplining myself by voluntary desnored away in quiet repose while I spent the privations of food, drink, and sleep. I had well whole night in packing and arranging papers, tested my pedestrian powers, and often walked writing letters, and giving my parting commis- as much as thirty miles at a stretch, while my sions, blessings, and good wishes to my friends. brothers rode about on handsome horses. Froin For as long as a man lives, though the death- the time of Napoleon's elevation I had felt we candle be burnt down low enough to scorch his should have hard trials to undergo, and I had fingers, he always feels he has something to set ordered myself and my mode of life acc
agly. in order and arrange. The snow creaked under From the profits of some of my books, my offimy footsteps, as with the first streak of dawn Icial salary in Stockholm, and some years' arwithdrew by the back way from the house; my rears of my Greifswald appointment, which were cousin, my sister, and my little ten years old paid in full in the year 1810, I was provided boy clúng closely around me, and held me fast. with sufficient means for my purpose. Now With a last caress and a sad violence I had to and then indeed, in the company of my friends, thrust them from me and hurry away. I heard I might spend a duoat or a Friedrich’s d'or, my little son's footsteps as he ran after and but when alone or on my wanderings my wants tried to overtake me, I heard his voice crying were of the very slightest. I cannot tell how loudly behind me; and my whole soul was šlled many a time my table was no better provided with rage, almost with curses. (Erinnerung- than that of a huntsman in the woods, or of a en, p. 117 seq.)
hussar on a march.” (Erinnerungen, p. 125.)
In August 1812, he reached St. PetersHe made his way in safety to Berlin, to burg, and was received into Von Stein's find himself in the midst of that great as- house, where he entered on his functions sociation of Germans whose one engrossing as a secretary, his salary and appointments bond of union consisted of hatred of the being paid by the Russian Government, French, determination to shake off their at whose call Von Stein also was working yoke, and longing for their destruction. in “ the good cause.” But there, too, he found the place too hot
In the following passage Arndt gives his for him, and, furnished with good and in- own account of his meeting with Von fluential recommendations, he took his way Stein, and of the work he had to do: with Colonel Count Chazot to Breslau, on his way to Russia. From Breslau he
Towards the end of August 1812, I stood for passed to Prague, where, strangely enough, Minister Baron von Stein. I saw before me a
the first time in the presence of the famous he met with information which he had failed to receive weeks before by letter, and slightly stooping, but with the brightest of
man of middle stature, already greyish-haired that the Minister Von Stein, summoned eyes and a most friendly bearing. Attracted to thence to St. Petersburg some time pre-me as he had been by the perusal of some of my viously, was specially desirous of his ser- writings, he had invited me to join him in the vices in the great work of liberation he most cordial manner, and as I stood before him was organizing.
I seemed to feel as if the impression I produced Thus the man at last had found his mis- upon bim satisfied his friendly expectations. sion. By what many would call a chance, He received me with as pleasant an ease as if but he himself honestly believed to be a we had been already years acquainted, and for special Providence, he found himself on my part, notwithstanding the deep respect I the way to his work, his passport ready, felt before a man so famous, I could not help and his place appointed. It was for this feeling, as if we were old friends. . . . Stein sort of service he had been making his pointed out to me as nearly as possible the powhole life a preparation. From the early him, though he never gave me cause to feel my
sition I was to occupy with and for and under days of his boyhood, in all the modesty self subordinate. He never spoke of his own and simplicity of his nature, he had still position towards the Emperor of Russia, merely nursed the presentiment of being useful to saying, “ You know what my object here is jnst his Fatherland, when that Fatherland was ' as well as what your own has been in coming so