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About this time Frederick was somewhat alarmed by a statement issued by the court of Austria, that the emperor, Charles Albert, was no legitimate emperor at all; that the election was not valid; and that Austria, which had the emperors kingdom of Bavaria by the throat, insisted upon compensation for the Silesia she had lost. It was evident that Maria Theresa, whose armies were every where successful, was determined that her husband, Duke Francis, should be decorated with the imperial crown. It now seemed probable that she would be able to accomplish her design. Frederick was alarmed, and deemed it necessary to strengthen himself by matrimonial alliances.

By no means, the king replied. With men like these I shall be sure of victory to-day!114

Again he writes, under the same date, to the Marquis DArgenson: Frederick had hardly reached Berlin ere he was astonished to learn, from dispatches from the Old Dessauer, that the Austrians, not content with driving him out of Bohemia, had actually invaded Silesia. Amazed, or affecting amazement, at such audacity, he sent reiterated and impatient orders to his veteran general to fall immediately upon the insolent foe and crush him. 231 If you make any resistance, you shall be treated as prisoners of war. If you make no resistance, and promise not to serve against us, you may march out of the city unmolested, with your arms.

I forget how the conversation changed. But I know that it grew so free that, seeing somebody coming to join in it, the king warned him to take care, saying that it was not safe to converse with a man doomed by the theologians to everlasting fire. I felt as if he somewhat overdid this of his being doomed, and that he boasted too much of it. Not to hint at the dishonesty of these free-thinking gentlemen, who very often are thoroughly afraid of the devil, it is at least bad taste to make display of such things. And it was with the people of bad taste whom he had about him, and some dull skeptics of his own academy, that he had acquired the habit of mocking at religion.

Still centuries elapsed, leaving little for history to record but war and woe. Fierce tribes swept in all directions. Battle was lifes great business. Man, ignorant, degraded, brutal, could have had but few if any joys. Perhaps, through his degradation, his woes were only such as beasts feel. By degrees, from this chaos, a certain kind of governmental order emerged. Small tribes became united under powerful chieftains. Kings arose. There were all varieties of political organizations, dukedoms, principalities,18 marquisates, and electorates. It is recorded that Adalbert, bishop of Prag, about the year 997, with two companions, as apostles of Christianity, first penetrated these wilds. Like Christian heroes they went, with staff and scrip, regardless of danger. The bishop was fifty years of age, and his gray hairs floated in the breeze. As he landed a stout savage struck him with the flat of his oar, and sent him headlong to the ground.

Was it not your intention to go to England?