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Still the conquerors had such dread of their foe that they dared not emerge from their ramparts to pursue him. Had they done so, they might easily have captured or slain his whole army. Frederick bore adversity with great apparent equanimity. He did not for a moment lose self-control, or manifest any agitation.416 With great skill he conducted his retreat. Immediately after the battle he wrote to his friend Lord Marischall:

The public affairs in France, writes Voltaire, continued in as bad a state after the death of Cardinal De Fleury as during the last two years of his administration. The house of Austria rose again from its ashes. France was cruelly pressed upon by that power and by England. No other resource remained to us but the chance of regaining the King of Prussia, who, having drawn us into the war, had abandoned us as soon as it was convenient to himself so to do. It was thought advisable, under these circumstances, that I should be sent to that monarch to sound his intentions, and, if possible, persuade him to avert the storm which, after it had first fallen on us, would be sure, sooner or later, to fall from Vienna upon him. We also wished to secure from him the loan of a hundred thousand men, with the assurance that he could thus better secure to himself Silesia.

DArgens spent the winter with the king at Leipsic. He gives the following incident: One day I entered the kings apartment, and found him sitting on the floor with a platter of fried meat, from which he was feeding his dogs. He had a little rod, with which he kept order among them, and shoved the best bits to his favorites. Under these circumstances, the young queen, urged by her council and by the English court, very reluctantly consented to propose terms of compromise to Frederick. Sir Thomas Robinson, subsequently Earl of Grantham, was sent from Vienna to Breslau to confer with the British minister there, Lord Hyndford, and with him to visit Frederick, at his camp at Strehlen, in the attempt to adjust the difficulties. The curious interview which ensued has been minutely described by Sir Thomas Robinson. It took place under the royal canvas tent of his Prussian majesty at 11 oclock A.M. of the 7th of August, 1741. On Wednesday, April 12, two days after the battle, Frederick wrote to his sister Wilhelmina from Ohlau as follows:

444 Good evening, gentlemen, good evening. Can you make room for me here, do you think? I have passed my winter like a Carthusian monk. I dine alone. I spend my life in reading and writing, and I do not sup. When one is sad, it becomes, at last, too burdensome to hide ones grief continually. It is better to give way to it than to carry ones gloom into society. Nothing solaces me but the vigorous application required in steady and continuous labor. This distraction does force one to put away painful ideas while it lasts. But alas! no sooner is the work done than these fatal companions present themselves again, as if livelier than ever. Maupertuis was right; the sum of evil does certainly surpass that of good. But to me it is all one. I have almost nothing more to lose; and my few remaining dayswhat matters it much of what complexion they be? At length, however, Frederick succeeded in pushing forward a detachment of his army to seize the magazines and the post he so greatly coveted. The troops marched all night. Toward morning, almost perishing with cold, they built enormous fires.304 Having warmed their numbed and freezing limbs, they pressed on to Iglau, to find it abandoned by the garrison. The Austrian general Lobkowitz had carried away every thing which could be removed, and then had reduced to ashes seventeen magazines, filled with military and commissary stores. The king was exceedingly chagrined by this barren conquest. He was anxious to advance in all directions, to take full possession of Moravia, before the Austrians could send re-enforcements to garrison its fortresses; but the Saxon lords refused to march any farther in this severe winter campaign. Frederick complained to the Saxon king. His Polish majesty sent an angry order to his troops to go forward. Sullenly they obeyed, interposing every obstacle in their power. Some of the leaders threw up their commissions and went home. Frederick, with his impetuous Prussians and his unwilling Saxons, spread over Moravia, levying contributions and seizing the strong places.

The worst which can happen to those who wish to travel in Silesia is to get spattered with the mud.