- Software name: appdown
- Software type: Microsoft Framwork
- size: 921MB
The stunning news soon reached Frederick that General Fouquet, whom he had left in Silesia with twelve thousand men, had been attacked by a vastly superior force of Austrians. The assault was furious in the extreme. Thirty-one thousand Austrians commenced the assault at two oclock in the morning. By eight oclock the bloody deed was done. Ten thousand of the Prussians strewed the field with their gory corpses. Two thousand only escaped. General Fouquet himself was wounded and taken prisoner. To add to the anguish of the king, this disaster was to be attributed to the king himself. He had angrily ordered General Fouquet to adopt a measure which that general, better acquainted with the position and forces of the foe, saw to be fatal. Heroically he obeyed orders, though he knew that it would prove the destruction of his army.
With almost unprecedented rapidity Frederick pressed his troops along, accomplishing in three marches near upon seventy miles. The course of the Oder here is, in its general direction, northwest. The army marched along its southwestern banks. On Saturday evening, the last day of the year, the advance-guard took possession of the southern and western suburbs of Breslau.229 The city, of one hundred thousand inhabitants, was spread out over both banks of the stream. Frederick established his headquarters at the palace of Pilsnitz, about five miles from the city. There were many Protestants in Breslau, who rejoiced in the idea of exchanging a Catholic for a Protestant government. It is said that some of the sentinels on the walls would watch their opportunity and present arms to the Prussian soldiers, and even at times exclaim, Welcome, dear sirs!
In the midst of one of her animated sentences, a low moan was heard from the inner room. "Excuse me," said Astra hurriedly, amazed to see how completely she had forgotten her cares, fears, and griefs, in the magic of the stranger's presence,"Excuse me, I must go to my mother."
The king, as we have mentioned, allotted to his son a very moderate income, barely enough for the necessary expenses of his establishment. But the prince borrowed money in large sums from the Empress of Germany, from Russia, from England. It was well known that, should his life be preserved, he would soon have ample means to repay the loan. Frederick William probably found it expedient to close his eyes against these transactions. But he did not attempt to conceal the chagrin with which he regarded the literary and voluptuous tastes of his son.
The audacious duplicity of this ambitious young king was still more conspicuously developed by his entering into a secret correspondence with the court of Austria, through certain generals in the Austrian army. And that he might the more effectually disguise his treachery from his allies, the French, he requested Lord Hyndford to write dispatches to various courts292to Presburg, to England, to Dresdencomplaining that Frederick was deaf to all proposals; that nothing could influence him to enter into terms of reconciliation with Austria. It was to be so arranged that the couriers carrying these dispatches of falsehood should be captured by the French, so that these documents should be carried to the French court.It is unquestionable that the mental discipline acquired by this elevated course, to which he consecrated so diligently his hours, prepared him for the wonderful career upon which he soon entered, and enabled him to act with efficiency which filled Europe with his renown.