同舟共济 守望相助——记武汉市台协会长萧永瑞

There was no need of that pretext about the waters of Plombires in demanding your leave. You can quit my service when you like. But, before going, be so good as to return me the key, the cross, and the volume of verses which I confided to you.

The morning of a hot August day dawned sultry, the wind breathing gently from the south. Bands of Cossacks hovered around upon the wings of the Prussian army, occasionally riding up to the infantry ranks and discharging their pistols at them. The Prussians were forbidden to make any reply. The infantry457 pours along like a plowman drawing his furrow, heedless of the circling crows. The Cossacks set fire to Zorndorf. In a few hours it was in ashes, while clouds of suffocating smoke were swept through the Russian lines.

CHAPTER XIV. THE DEFEAT AND FLIGHT OF FREDERICK. Frederick was rapidly awaking to the consciousness that Maria Theresa, whom he had despised as a woman, and a young wife and mother, and whose territory he thought he could dismember with impunity, was fully his equal, not only in ability to raise and direct armies, but also in diplomatic intrigue. About the middle of August he perceived from his camp in Chlum that Prince Charles was receiving large re-enforcements from the south. At the same time, he saw that corps after corps, principally of Saxon troops, were defiling away by circuitous roads to the north. It was soon evident that the heroic Maria Theresa was preparing to send an army into the very heart of Prussia to attack its capital. This was, indeed, changing the aspect of the war.

At one moment the Russian horse dashed against this line and staggered it. Frederick immediately rushed into the vortex to rally the broken battalions. At the same instant the magnificent squadrons of Seidlitz, five thousand strong, flushed with victory, swept like the storm-wind upon the Russian dragoons. They were whirled back like autumn leaves before the gale. About four oclock the firing ceased. The ammunition on both sides was nearly expended. For some time the Prussians had been using the cartridge-boxes of the dead Russians. My own private conjecture, I confess, has rather grown to be, on much reading of those Rulhires and distracted books, that the czarinawho was a grandiose creature, with considerable magnanimities, natural and acquired; with many ostentations, some really great qualities and talents; in effect, a kind of she Louis Quatorze (if the reader will reflect on that royal gentleman, and put him into petticoats in Russia, and change his improper females for improper males)that the czarina, very clearly resolute to keep Poland hers, had determined with herself to do something very handsome in regard to Poland; and to gain glory, both with the enlightened philosophe classes and with her own proud heart, by her treatment of that intricate matter.

SOPHIA DOROTHEA. Yesterday I joined the army, and Daun decamped. I have493 followed him thus far, and will continue it to the frontiers of Bohemia. Our measures are so taken that he will not get out of Saxony without considerable loss. Of this ex-tutor Frederick bethinks him; and in the course of that same dayfor there is no delayFrederick, who is at Berlin, beckons General G?rtz to come over to him from Potsdam instantly.

Voltaire had, as a pet, a very vicious ape, treacherous, spiteful, who pelted passers-by with stones, and, when provoked, would bite terribly. The name of this hateful beast was Luc. Voltaire gave his friend Frederick the nickname of Luc. He corresponded freely with the enemies of his Prussian majesty. A few extracts will reveal the character of the friendship of the philosopher. Some days after the battle of Kunersdorf Voltaire wrote to DArgental:

Frederick was not unduly elated with his victory. He was still terribly harassed for money. There were campaigns opening before him, in an unending series, requiring enormous expenditure. Even many such victories as he had just gained would only conduct him to irretrievable ruin, unless he could succeed in conquering a peace. In these dark hours the will of this extraordinary man remained inflexible. He would not listen to any propositions for peace which did not guarantee to him Silesia. Maria Theresa would listen to no terms which did not restore to her the lost province.

Mais le ciel, qui de tout dispose,

At one oclock in the morning of May 31 he sent for a clergyman, M. Cochius, and seemed to be in great distress both of body and of mind. I fear, said he, that I have a great deal of pain yet to suffer. I can remember nothing. I can not pray. I have forgotten all my prayers. M. Cochius endeavored to console him. At the close of the interview the king said, sadly, Fare thee well. We shall most probably never meet again in this world. He was then rolled, in his wheel-chair, into the chamber of the queen.

Thus influenced, she yielded. Tears flooded her eyes, and her voice was broken with sobs as she said, I am ready to sacrifice myself for the peace of the family. The deputation withdrew, leaving the princess in despair. Baron Grumkow conveyed to the king the pleasing intelligence of her submission.