- Software name: appdown
- Software type: Microsoft Framwork
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In September, 1749, Madame Du Chatelet, the divine Emilie of Voltaire, suddenly died. The infidel philosopher seemed much grieved for a time. Frederick, who never fancied Madame Du Chatelet, was the more eager, now that she was out of the way, that Voltaire should come to Sans Souci, and aid him in his literary labors. A trivial incident occurred at this time worthy of record, as illustrative of the character of the king. At the close of the year 1749 there had been a review of Austrian troops at M?hren. It was not a very important affair, neither the empress queen nor her husband being present. Three380 Prussian officers made their appearance. It was said that they had come to inveigle soldiers to desert, and enlist under the banners of Prussia. They were peremptorily ordered by the Austrian authorities to leave the ground. Frederick, when he heard of it, said nothing, but treasured it up.
Do not press each other, my children. Take care of yourselves that the horses may not trample upon you, and that no accident may happen.
In this fiery humor, the king leaped upon his horse and galloped to Schweidnitz. Here he met the Old Dessauer. He must have been not a little mortified to learn that his veteran general was right, and he utterly in the wrong. Prince Charles had returned home. Marshal Traun was in command of the Austrians.342 He had a compact army of 20,000 men, flushed with victory and surrounded by countless thousands of Pandours, who veiled every movement from view. He had established himself in an impregnable position on the south side of the Neisse, where he could not be assailed, with any prospect of success, by the force which Leopold could then summon to his aid.He resumed his statement. "At first, of course, I paid no attention to these rumors; my ears and eyes were closed against them by that blind, foolish trust in you, of which I have spoken. By and by, they came thicker and faster, and in a shape to compel my consideration. I began to understand that the possible heir of Bergan Hall possessed an immense advantage over the humble physician;although it might be well to keep a hold on the latter until the former was secure, and his inheritance certain. By way of two strings to the bow, there might be two secret engagements. I commenced an investigation. I traced the reports which I have mentioned back to their source"
In this assembly of gay young men religion was generally a topic of ridicule. Even Jordan, the ex-preacher, was either willingly or unwillingly borne along by the current. Subsequently, when youth and health had fled, and he was on a sick-bed suffering from lingering disease, he felt the need of those consolations which Christianity alone can give. He wrote, under date of April, 1745, to Frederick, who was then king, and whose friendship continued unabated:"And hehe dared to ask for my daughter?"