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Again he wrote DArgens on the 26th of December, What a pleasure to hear that you are coming. I have sent a party of light horse to conduct you. You can make short journeys. I have directed that horses be ordered for you, that your rooms be warmed every where, and good fowls ready on all roads. Your apartment in this house is carpeted, hermetically shut. You shall suffer nothing from draughts or from noise.

Affairs were now assuming throughout Europe a very threatening aspect. The two French armies, of forty thousand each, had already crossed the Rhine to join their German allies in the war against Austria. One of these armies, to be commanded by Belleisle, had crossed the river about thirty miles below Strasbourg to unite with the Elector of Bavarias troops and march upon Vienna. The other army, under Maillebois, had crossed the Lower Rhine a few miles below Düsseldorf. Its mission was, as we have mentioned, to encamp upon the frontiers of Hanover, prepared to invade that province, in co-operation with the Prussian troops in the camp at G?ttin, should the King of England venture to raise a hand in behalf of Austria. It was also in position to attack and overwhelm Holland, Englands only ally, should that power manifest the slightest opposition to the designs of Prussia and France. At the same time, Sweden, on the 4th of August, had declared war against Russia, so that no help could come to Austria from that quarter. Great diplomatic ability had been displayed in guarding every point in these complicated measures. The French minister, Belleisle, was probably the prominent agent in these wide-spread combinations.60

We can not afford the least narrative of G?rtz and his courses: imagination, from a few traits, will sufficiently conceive them. He had gone first to Karl Theodors minister: Dead to it, I fear; has already signed? Alas! yes. Upon which to Zweibrück, the heirs minister, whom his master had distinctly ordered to sign,554 but who, at his own peril, gallant man, delayed, remonstrated, had not yet done it; and was able to answer: On the 6th of July, the trunk having arrived, the volume of poems was recovered and Voltaire was allowed to go on his way. His pen, dipped in gall, was an instrument which even a monarch might fear. It inflicted wounds upon the reputation of Frederick which will probably never be healed. Four years passed away, during which Voltaire and Frederick were almost entirely strangers to each other. The French minister at the court of Berlin, Count Rothenburg, was a Prussian by birth. He was a man of much diplomatic ability, and a very accomplished gentleman. Having spent much of his life in Paris, he had acquired the polished manners of the French court, and wore the costume appropriate to the Tuileries and Versailles. He and his associates in the embassy attracted much attention as they appeared in their cocked hats, flowing wigs, laced coats, and other gorgeous trimmings. The king, in his homespun garb, was apprehensive that the example so obnoxious to him might spread.

GRUMKOWS CONFERENCE WITH WILHELMINA.

Voltaire, in summing up a sketch of this campaign of 1757, writes in characteristic phrase: But Frederick was now a full-grown man. His heirship to the throne rendered him a power among the courts of Europe. It was doubtful whether he would again submit to a caning. The infirm old king, gouty, dropsical, weakened, and lamed by ulcers, could not conceal from himself that his power, with his energies, was rapidly waning. Indeed, at times, he even talked of abdicating in favor of his son. Whenever there was a transient abatement in his maladies, he roused himself to the utmost, took short journeys, and tried to deceive himself into the belief that he was well again.