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Vastly superior as was the Russian army in numbers, General Soltikof did not venture to advance to attack his terrible foe. He had selected a very strong position on a range of eminences about one hundred feet high, running for several miles in an easterly direction from the river. Upon this ridge, which was called the Heights of Kunersdorf, the Russian general had intrenched himself with the utmost care. The surrounding country was full of bogs, and sluggish streams, and a scraggy growth of tough and thorny bushes, almost impenetrable. As they marched their voices burst forth simultaneously in a German hymn. The gush of their rude and many-voiced melody was borne distinctly on the wind to the eminence where Frederick stood, anxiously watching those movements which were to decide his own fate, that of his family, and of his kingdom. The following is a translation of one of the verses of this hymn:

Voltaire, being safe out of Prussia, in the territory of the King of Poland, instead of hastening to Plombires, tarried in Dresden, and then in Leipsic. From those places he began shooting, through magazines, newspapers, and various other instrumentalities, his poisoned darts at M. Maupertuis. Though these malignant assaults, rapidly following each other, were anonymous, no one could doubt their authorship. M. Maupertuis, exasperated, wrote to him from Berlin on the 7th of April:

The death of George I. affected the strange Frederick William very deeply. He not only shed tears, but, if we may be pardoned the expression, blubbered like a child. His health seemed50 to fail, and hypochondria, in its most melancholy form, tormented him. As is not unusual in such cases, he became excessively religious. Every enjoyment was deemed sinful, if we except the indulgence in an ungovernable temper, which the self-righteous king made no attempt to curb. Wilhelmina, describing this state of things with her graphic pen, writes: 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.

As soon as the roads are surer I hope you will write more frequently. I do not know where we shall have our winter quarters. Our houses at Breslau have been destroyed in the late bombardment. Our enemies envy us every thing, even the air we breathe. They must, however, leave us some place. If it be a safe one, I shall be delighted to receive you there. All-serenest and All-graciousest Father,To your royal majesty, my all-graciousest Father, I have, by my disobedience as Their subject and soldier, not less than by my undutifulness as Their son, given occasion to a just wrath and aversion against me. With the all-obedientest respect I submit myself wholly to the grace of my most All-gracious Father, and beg him most All-graciously to pardon me, as it is not so much the withdrawal of my liberty, in a sad arrest, as my own thoughts of the fault I have committed that have brought me to reason, who, with all-obedientest respect and submission, continue till my end my All-graciousest kings and Fathers faithfully-obedientest servant and son,

Far away in the east the Austrian officers discerned a Prussian column of observation, consisting of about twelve thousand horse and foot, wending along from hollow to height, their polished weapons flashing back the rays of the afternoon sun. Frederick, carefully examining the ground, immediately made arrangements to bring forward his troops under curtain of the night for a decisive battle. His orderlies were silently dispatched in all directions. At eight oclock the whole army was in350 motion. His troops were so concentrated that the farthest divisions had a march of only nine miles. Silently, not a word being spoken, not a pipe being lighted, and all the baggage being left behind, they crossed the bridge of the Striegau River, and, deploying to the right and the left, took position in front of the slumbering allied troops. 444 Good evening, gentlemen, good evening. Can you make room for me here, do you think?

When they reached Strasbourg they provided themselves with French dresses. The king and his brother put up at different inns, that they might be less liable to suspicion. Frederick,200 with several of his party, took lodgings at the Raven Hotel. He sent the landlord out to invite several army officers to sup with a foreign gentleman, Count Dufour, from Bohemia, who was an entire stranger in the place. Some of the officers very peremptorily declined the invitation, considering it an imposition. Three, however, allured by the singularity of the summons, repaired to the inn. The assumed count received them with great courtesy, apologized for the liberty he had taken, thanked them for their kindness, and assured them that, being a stranger, he was very happy to make the acquaintance of so many brave officers, whose society he valued above that of all others.